Bite Me! Change Your Life One Bite At A Time

Bite Me! Change Your Life One Bite At A Time

by Toni Julian

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Overview

Bite Me! Change Your Life One Bite At A Time by Toni Julian

The only sustainable lifestyle and meal solution with attitude!
"I've had the opportunity to meet and interview a lot of local authors and personalities. But rarely do I find someone as passionate and true to their cause as Toni! She is an individual who leads by example and truly cares about helping others change their lives. It is her compassion that has led her to successfully transform the lives of hundreds of people! Toni is true to her word, a follower of her own advice, and a force to be reckoned with. A contagious positive attitude and genuine passion for health and fitness make her one of the best in the industry!" Ramona Gwargis, Times Media, Inc.
"This book and my determination have changed me for the better, for life. I will always incorporate style of eating in my life, and my future family's life. I've had numerous people ask me, "what are doing, what is different, you are shrinking!" All I can do is forward them the link to this book, and smile because I know what lies behind the first turned page - a change to your life forever if you are ready to take that leap of faith!"
Heather Buchholz, client and 2010 recipient of the BITE ME! "Best Buns" Award

In this book you will find:
· An Inspirational Story of Reinvention by the Author
· A Lifestyle Assessment
· Tools to Make Healthy Foods your New Convenience Foods
· How to Overcome Societal Expectations, Misinformation and Fast Food InFATuation
· Over 50 Delicious, Nutritious and Simple Meal Solutions
· 10 Quick Tips for Healthy, Clean Eating
· How to Convert Your Favorite Recipe from Mean to Clean!
· Complete Nutrient Breakdown for Each Recipe
· How to Eat Healthy While On-the-Go
· 325 Calorie Meal Template
· Success Stories from Real People Like You
· The Official Eight Week "BITE ME!" Challenge

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781463419370
Publisher: AuthorHouse
Publication date: 07/07/2011
Pages: 280
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)

Read an Excerpt

BITE ME! Change Your Life One Bite at a Time

An Inspirational Journey of Re-Invention to a Sustainable, Healthy Lifestyle
By Toni Julian

AuthorHouse

Copyright © 2011 Toni Julian
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-4634-1938-7


Chapter One

ONE BITE AT A TIME

"The greatest wealth a man may acquire is the wisdom he gains from living. And sometimes out of small beginnings come the forces that shape a whole life." ~John Tucker Battle, Screen Writer

You can change your life one bite at a time, one meal at a time, and one day at a time, just by making simple changes in your diet and lifestyle. Eventually all those good choices add up to a better lifestyle and quality of life; one with increased energy, a leaner body, an improved immune system and happier outlook.

What we eat, where we eat, and how much we eat is entirely our decision. It is through the choices we make on a daily basis that have the most significant impact on how we look and feel. Unfortunately, the majority of Americans are misled and left at the mercy of whatever information is conveniently accessible, which is ironically how most of us eat; whatever is convenient and accessible. The quality of this information is as poor as the quality of our food.

We need to regroup; get back to a common sense approach about our nutrition because the way we look and feel is largely impacted by what we eat. And frankly, dining at most restaurants, or buying processed, prepared or fast foods puts us at a disadvantage. Even with the new nutrient disclosure laws, we often do not know the quality of ingredients used or if the information is even accurate. Portion size is yet another issue. Food labeling can be intentionally misleading, and going on diets where the foods are provided or fad diets where certain food types are restricted may be helpful short term, but only while you strictly adhere to them, and they won't teach you how to make choices for yourself that are sustainable. An astonishing 95% of people who attempt fad diets gain their weight back within the first year.

The better alternative: Learn how to build a strong nutritional foundation; eat in a life-smart way that balances your blood sugar, helps stave off disease and puts you in a better position to persevere through illness, stress and whatever else life happens to throw your way.

Make simple, wholesome meals for yourself and your family, and you will see the benefits within a short time. You will be introduced to the concept of "clean eating" in the next chapter, and if you read on, you'll be enlightened to learn how to apply simple guidelines to your life so these healthy eating habits will be sustainable, for the rest of your life. You will begin to feel phenomenal, and your family won't realize they are eating so much healthier. Think about the positive role model you will be setting for your children; leading by example. Start making good choices now. It's really never too late to start making positive changes and it's not as difficult as you think. You can still eat the foods you love in moderation and you won't need to make changes you're not ready for.

Our ancestors lived their lives more moderately. In America, just 150 years ago, men, women and children lived challenging lives. Women needed to eat about 4000 calories each day just to provide them with energy to get through their agrarian day; working the fields, cooking, washing, and tending to their families. Present day, we live an over-abundant lifestyle, to the point that we need to create ways to expend our excess energy. To put it very simply, we eat too much and move too little. Even 50 years ago lifestyles were better calorically balanced. We need to learn how to eat like our grandparents, not our parents, who began to incorporate highly processed, convenient foods into their diets.

Anyone who knows me has heard me brag about my family. My Grandmother, Nancy, is 102 today as I write. Although I grew up geographically distanced from her, even as a young child I watched her with an intense curiosity. She is a feisty and petite Italian with beautiful skin, white teeth and a propensity for waking you up by throwing a shoe at your head. Just ask my father.

What I remember most about her is her lifestyle, which may be a strange thing for a kid to notice. She was different from my parents, from the "old world" with a heavy Italian accent and unrefined ways. Every day she walked for a miles touring the neighborhood, picking mustard greens from nearby fields for dinner. While it's one thing to pick a neighbor's weeds—I realized early she was completely oblivious of neighborly etiquette—when she came home with bunches of roses from their garden too. She made her own pasta from scratch, using a fork to pinch the edges of the ravioli together. A typical Italian, she never measured ingredients and the kitchen was coated with a dusting of flour. For dessert she would slice fresh oranges and put them on the table. All her foods were whole. She bought little that had a nutrition facts label attached to it. It came from the Earth, and embarrassingly I learned, at times from the neighbor's front yard.

We are the new centurions if we play our cards right, we too will live to be 100 like my grandmother. Although to me it's not so much the length of life we lead as much as the quality in which we live it, which makes it vitally important to shift the way we think about our eating and fitness habits while we have the opportunity and work toward not only extending our lives but the quality of our life as well.

You will learn how to make lifestyle changes, while eating the foods you love, in a way that is simple and convenient. You will be walked through the process of learning how you metabolize foods and how to reset your own metabolism. You will be motivated and encouraged, and most of all finally see the rewards from your efforts. So let's get started on our journey together!

Chapter Two

TONI'S STORY OF REINVENTION

"My main goal is to inspire you to take impeccable care of yourself. I have proven it is never too late to start." ~ Toni Julian

It took a while for me to understand the benefits of being proactive with my health. I learned the hard way; I am hoping you will not have to repeat my mistakes. Whether you're a teacher, an engineer, a firefighter or a busy parent, why not be at the top of your game? We're always "on" and spending our days not feeling as well as we can, takes away a part of our gift of life and erodes our happiness. Not every ailment or disease is preventable, but why gamble? At a minimum, improve the quality of your life so you are in the best position to get through whatever life throws at you.

Essentially, I've experienced a full and diverse life; from the joyfulness of love and marriage and babies, to the challenges of illnesses, divorce, hospitalizations, horrific car accidents and permanent injuries, while juggling a business and blending a family.

I'd like now to share my story with you, a story of healing, of self-improvement, and of stretching well beyond the confines of the routine of my predictable daily life, in hopes that you may relate to at least parts of it.

I was the typical mom, striving to maintain that delicate balance between being a full time working mother; having a full time career and blending a new family in a dynamic household with a husband and four kids; a "yours, mine and ours" family, including our new infant and three elementary age kids. I taught art in their classrooms and was a "room mom" for years. I juggled soccer practices and Girl Scout cookie sales, made Halloween outfits and had home cooked meals on the table every night. Eventually, our three older kids were in high school, and heading into college to explore new-found freedoms in different parts of the country.

After spending decades in the corporate world—I had several businesses, one of which was a Marketing Communications firm where we provided trade show, conference and special event program management services to a hostoftechnologycompaniesinSiliconValley—aswellasanInterior Design Firm—finding balance between taking care of myself, and all the other demands of family life, were beginning to take its toll.

Although I thought I took good care of myself—I ate reasonably well, healthier than most, worked out at a local gym, and was very active, it wasn't enough. I didn't feel well most of the time, and more often than not felt "under the weather." When my life was not in balance, say I was a little sleep deprived, maybe didn't eat as well as I could and it was "that time of the month," my husband would joke with me about it being the "perfect storm." My temperament was so delicate; I'd get hit with a massive migraine if I couldn't keep all elements of my life in balance.

Being afflicted with frequent migraines and chronic lower back pain, from multiple rear-end collisions, a skydiving accident and a near-death car accident in my twenties, the cumulative effect was debilitating. If I tripped on a curb, I was so de-conditioned, I was sure to throw my back out. When our youngest daughter was eight weeks old, I happened to sneeze while holding her and dropped to the floor, completely blowing out my back. Fortunately, I had the wherewithal to gently place her on the bed before I crumpled into a heap on the floor, then crawled to the phone for help. I found myself in bed for nine days with a cooler of yogurt and diet drinks to sustain me while my husband was at work. I began participating in physical therapy, but it wasn't enough and more importantly, it made me feel old and like an invalid!

Waking up to coffee in the morning, diet Pepsi's and a Lean Cuisine at lunch, and winding down at night over a bottle of wine shared with my husband, I did not realize I was self-medicating to overcome the stress, the lack of energy, the exhaustion, and the anxiety of the challenges that can (and did) come along while blending our families in a healthy way. I was on medications for the migraines, the anxiety and situational depression, and felt just like a bottle of 7up that's been sitting out open for a week ... flat!

In spite of these challenges, I always looked on the upside. I felt happy, blessed and appreciative for all I had going in my life. But honestly, something had to give, it was no longer working for me, but I had difficulty envisioning being able to make the necessary changes. It just seemed too overwhelming and I was so close to the tree all I could see was the bark, rather than the composite of beautiful branches and leaves called my life. I was not enjoying my life the way I knew I wanted to.

The Wake-up Call

I didn't fully come to the realization that I had really bitten it, until I was given a harsh wake-up call. That epiphany came with the death of my best friend, Barbara Wyman-Sun, in the summer of 2007. We had been friends since we were 11 years old, nearly 40 years, and we lead parallel lives both being pregnant with our respective youngest children. Barb was an amazing mother; she didn't just have a refrigerator to showcase her kid's art work, she dedicated an entire kitchen wall. She knew how to have fun and loved being silly, regardless of what other people thought. I still remember her birthday, sitting on a throne on her front lawn with a crown and a robe, surrounded by her subjects (friends). I admired her being so authentic and unique. Sadly, Barb was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer at the age of 48 and through my research learned there was only a 1% chance of survivability after one year. I kept telling her, "Barb, that one percent can be YOU!"

Feeling powerless to help, I went to church for the first time in 30 years. I was prompted to pray for a miraculous recovery for my friend. I felt there was something I needed to learn from this situation and also felt certain I would gain some important help. The take-away was two strong messages I knew I was meant to hear. First, use your skills to help those around you, and the second was to live your life with grace. Don't ask for life to easy, because it isn't; ask God to learn how to live it gracefully.

At the same time I was also diagnosed with high-risk cervical dysplasia (CIN1) and underwent surgery to hopefully prevent the spread of full-blown uterine cancer. I was unaware of this dormant virus until my immune system became compromised and unleashed the disease. I would go to bed at night with tears streaming down my cheeks, thinking "How could this be, we have four kids?" One of my other closest friends, Jan, had shared with me that she had been diagnosed with the exact disease many years earlier, and within nine months had developed into ovarian cancer and hemorrhaged after surgery. She is fortunate to have survived it. I was terrified.

JOURNAL ENTRY 3/23/07

"A few days ago I was diagnosed with CIN1, Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia. I was told I had been infected with HPV, and that it is the high risk type virus that can lead to full-blown cervical cancer if left untreated. Part of me wants to sound clinical but the other part of me has tears streaming down my cheeks as I write. It's 12:39AM and I can't sleep. I close my eyes and the most extreme and dark thoughts go through my mind and I am ashamed I have invited them."

Given my friends deteriorating condition, I could not even tell her I was sick. Within a couple of days of my discovery, I was honored to be asked by her family to help with her care after they set her up in a hospital bed at home so she could be closest to those that loved her. I brought cookie dough, cutters and colorful sprinkles and spent some time with her kids, baking in the kitchen. I was so very blessed to be with her, to have an opportunity to talk with her albeit briefly. I didn't know if she was lucid, but I told her I loved her and thanked her for helping me through my difficult high school years (that you will learn about later) in hopes that my words and feelings would be heard. The next day, after a 17 month battle, she left a devastated husband, two kids and loving parents behind. Out of respect for the family, I am omitting the private details.

My husband and I had previously planned a trip to Italy and were on a plane the very next day. I could not stop the steady stream of tears and my despair plunged even deeper when I realized I would miss her funeral the following week. Feeling guilty and trapped so far away from home, I decided to pay respects to her in my own way by going into every church I encountered in every city we visited and decided to say a few words for her in the less popular, restricted areas for prayer, while thousands of tourists flocked the halls of the basilicas in Florence, Venice, Sorrento, Cinque Terre and Rome. A sense of levity had settled in my soul as I felt her presence and was comforted—knowing she was with God—and whispered a silent commitment to help others, although it was not clear in what way at the time.

With the loss of this beautiful long-time friend, combined with experiencing the tumultuous emotions of the unpredictability of my own medical condition, I was forced to assess my mortality as well as question whether I had done all I could for my friend. Pangs of guilt passed through me as I asked myself what caused her to pass at such a young age. Was there something I could have done to help prevent this disease? Could it have been related to her diet or the excess "baby weight" as she called it, that she carried around her middle? Her physicians said she was "unlucky." Although this provided no answer to the questions I pondered, I knew in my heart it was time to raise my personal wellness bar and reach out to help others to do the same.

It was the motivation I needed to make lifestyle changes and begin to reinvent myself. It was time. I came through it when my friend didn't and I was determined to make something good come from the loss. My conviction was further reinforced as my awareness of the plight of those around me, and I began to delve into what I call "the American de-condition," or gradual loss of our wellness and fitness conditioning in this country.

(Continues...)



Excerpted from BITE ME! Change Your Life One Bite at a Time by Toni Julian Copyright © 2011 by Toni Julian. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Contents

Introduction....................xiii
Chapter 1: One Bite at a Time....................1
Chapter 2: Toni's Story of Reinvention....................5
The Wake-Up Call....................8
The Real Journey Begins....................11
Life-Smart Changes and My Family....................11
The Ultimate Challenge....................15
Sustainability and a Test of Fortitude....................17
Chapter 3: Lifestyle Changes for Life!....................23
What Is A Lifestyle Change?....................23
Take The Lifestyle Assessment....................25
Where Should I Start?....................28
Sustainable Lifestyle Change Examples....................29
Chapter 4: Why Diets Don't Work....................31
Chapter 5: Retraining Your Metabolism....................34
Chapter 6: Blood Sugar—A Delicate Balance....................37
Lowering Your Glycemic Load....................42
Good Sleep Hygiene....................43
Chapter 7: Your Positive Attitude Will Set You Free!....................46
Your True Motivation....................48
Chapter 8: Arm Yourself with Assertion Skills, a Fork and an Attitude....................51
Societal Expectations....................51
Misinformation....................56
Food Industry Deceptions....................58
Foods That Bite Back....................59
Non-Stick Cooking Spray....................59
Fast Food InFATuation....................60
Chapter 9: Just Say "Bite Me!"....................63
Top 10 Undermining (and horribly unattractive) Habits....................63
Daily Habits....................64
Excuses, Excuses!....................66
Time Management....................66
Stress....................67
Persevere Through Your Past....................69
Traumatic Events Called Life....................74
Aging and Appreciation....................76
Chapter 10: Medical Issues and Living with Chronic Pain....................79
Establishing Your Wellness Benchmark....................80
Critical Health Numbers....................83
The Complexities of Medication....................85
Chapter 11: Learn to Eat Clean....................88
10 Quick Tips for Healthy, Clean Eating....................89
Clean Meal Solutions....................90
Benefits of Clean Eating—From the Inside, Out!....................90
How to Select the Correct Foods....................91
Building Your Meal....................92
Supplementation....................96
Chapter 12: Let's Get Organized!....................99
Sample Daily Menu—Based on 1500 Calories Per Day....................100
Weekly To-Do List....................100
Five-Fork Rating....................101
"Bite Me!" Grocery List....................103
Necessary Kitchen Tools....................103
The Perfect Pantry....................103
Chapter 13: The Only Reason I Have a Kitchen is it Came with the House When I Bought It....................105
No-Cooking-Required-Meal Solutions....................105
Restaurant Ordering Tips....................106
So You're Packing....................108
325 Calorie On-The-Go Meal Template....................108
Chapter 14: Progress Reports from Inspirational People....................110
Chapter 15: Ready, Get Set, Let's Eat!....................125
Understanding the Nutrient Profile....................126
Recipes and Meal Solutions....................129
Convert Your Favorite Recipe from Mean to Clean!....................234
Journaling Foods....................236
Chapter 16: The Eight Week "Bite Me!" Challenge....................241
Contestant Results....................243
Are You Ready for the Challenge?....................249
Take Three Easy Steps!....................250
Enroll in the Official 8 Week "BITE ME!" Challenge....................252
Pay It Forward....................252
Chapter 17: Trouble-Shooting Guide....................253
Chapter 18: Q& A....................256
Acknowledgements and Gratitude....................261

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