Tuesday, July 9, 2013


As I said before, this book YOUNGER NEXT YEAR is a very interesting read. Most of us have bought into the belief that once one turns 60 they are on a slippery slope to the end but these guys are saying NOT. Through changing your lifestyle and exercising 6 days out of each week you can produce a life that has a gently tipped plateau of good health that lasts well into the eighties. This is in place of the slippery slope of bad health. You could even produce an upward slope of much improved health and fitness until when you reach your eighties. Yes it can happen, just a matter of getting up off your couch now and doing the exercising and engaging life as it is meant to be engaged.

The following is the link where you can purchase this book I am talking about:

Please be advised that if you do purchase the book using this link I will get a commission from amazon.

Cheers, be happy

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Aging and Decaying

The book I mentioned in the last post, YOUNGER NEXT YEAR, is indeed an interesting read. It tells me that aging is not what we say it is. The stuff that happens to generally a lot of us, diabetes, cancers, high blood pressure, strokes, osteoarthritis and etc., as we emerge into the 50’s and 60’s is as a result of decay of our bodies not aging. Aging is the graying of our hairs, the slowing down of our maximum heart rates, and the price cut of movie tickets, these we cannot do anything about. They will happen but the other stuff is as a result of decay of our bodies and we can absolutely do something about it.

What brings about decay of our bodies, according to these authors, is “our modern, sedentary lifestyle. Decay comes from turning on the t.v. when the sun is out. From cracking open that beer while you are watching the t.v., from every drive to a fast-food place to get a super-size order of fries and a soft drink full of sugar and caffeine…from sitting home alone. It comes from giving up on life and failing to engage.” (page 40) But as they say we can do something about it. “ The keys to to overriding decay are daily exercise, emotional commitment, reasonable nutrition and real engagement with living. But it starts with exercise”. (page 34)

So I ask you to get up and start walking, start eating right, meet people, find a cause you can be passionate about…quit decaying on your couch day after day. You were given reasons for living on this wonderful earth, find them and bless people with them.

Here are some exercises you can do in your home but be careful if you have not done exercises for a while. You might want to work with your doctor first to make sure nothing goes wrong. The exercises shown will certainly increase your heart rate and blood flow, it will make you feel good and make you sleep good tonite. The exercises are on youtube, to access just click on the link.


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Younger Next Year and More Smoothies

It was 25 degrees celsius where I am at here in northern Ontario in Canada...I guess that's 77 f. Its beautiful up here. Maybe next time I will post some pictures of the area.

Anyway I started reading this book titled, Younger Next Year by Chris Crowley and Henry S. Lodge. It sounds interesting so far. It talks about how as when you are reaching your 50's and 60's you really don't have to just stand there and accept the veritable ravages of aging, that in fact you can do something about it so that you will stay healthy well into your 80's. To accomplish this Chris says on page 11, "All he wants you to do <Chris is referring to Henry> is change the way you live. Fundamentally and forever. Me, too." Ladies and gentlemen therein lies the magic of achieving good health and fitness levels, your ability to change the way you live. Fundamentally and forever. Just like what I have been saying in my previous posts. Now a medical doctor (Henry) confirms this. So I wish for you to get that spirit that will enable you to make the necessary changes to the way you are currently living your life. The giver of life, the Creator, does not want you to live your life in pain or in bad health. He wants you to enjoy the life He has given you on this earth.

I found some smoothies on the internet the other day that you may enjoy to help you in your determination to live a healthy life. They are nutritious.

The goal here is to create a smoothie packed with nutrients that is super filling, but low in calories, that you can have for breakfast or lunch. In other words, it’s not a snack (i.e. in addition to regular meals), but a meal replacement (instead of meals). To make a meal, a smoothie needs to include carbohydrates, protein and a little fat. Fat is important because helps you feel full, as does protein.

  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 scoop whey protein powder
  • ½ medium banana
  • 1 cup frozen mixed berries
  • ¾ cup milk (skim/ almond/ soy)
  • 3 to 5 ice cubes
Mixed berries (carbohydrates) provide energy and are packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and are a natural sweetener. Chia seeds are incredibly rich in omega-3 fatty acids (healthy fat), protein antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Chia seeds also contain super high levels of soluble and insoluble fiber, making them uncannily filling and a great addition to low-calorie smoothies.

Filling smoothie ingredients: chia seeds, ground psyllium husks, whey protein, low-fat Greek yogurt.

Smoothies are perfect for breakfast on the go. All the goodness of a healthy breakfast in one cup. Quick cook oats and nuts help to slow down the absorption of sugar from the fruit, keeping blood sugar levels steady, and giving you more energy for longer. Yogurt and milk are rich in protein, which makes this smoothie filling. The fruit are a source of vitamins and minerals, as well as fiber and carbohydrates, making the smoothie nutritious and energizing.

  •  ¼ cup quick cook oats (not instant)
  • ¼ cup nuts (walnuts, almonds, or pecans)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 cup frozen fruit (mango, blackcurrants, or strawberries)
  • 2 ½ tbsp low-fat yogurt
  • 1 cup of milk (skim/ soy/ almond)

Is there anything worse than laying in bed trying to sleep, concentrating on trying to sleep, and thus not getting to sleep at all? You can’t mentally force yourself to sleep (a self-defeating effort); but you can physiologically. To that end, this smoothie is made up of foods (banana, peanut butter, milk) that contain tryptophan, a sleep-promoting substance, which is converted to serotonin or melatonin. This smoothie is also rich in carbs and calcium, which intensify the effect of tryptophan. Cherries contain melatonin and bananas are a great source of potassium and magnesium, which are natural muscle relaxants.

  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • ¼ cup pitted cherries
  • ½ banana
  • 1 cup milk (skim/ almond/ soy)
  • Ice cubes

 Enjoy :-)

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Resolving To Change

I wrote earlier of how it is essential to look at eating differently and exercising as changing yourself. Saying so and doing it are two different things because it can be very difficult to do it...changing yourself I mean. After living a certain way (lifestyle) for many years you will find that it is really hard to make the necessary changes that will bring good health and fitness to your life. You know in your mind that the foods you are eating are making a contribution to your health issues and not exercising is what will bring about lifestyle illnesses like diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, etc. You cant escape nodding to this as there are many public messages that say this but we continue to do what we do. We convince ourselves it can't happen to us, maybe to others but not us. But some point in time these things are going to come knocking on your door. If at that time you feel you really have to do something about the state of your health and fitness then there are many people out there that will help you on this journey.

The hardest part is accepting the situation and saying to yourself that you are sick because of the lifestyle choices you have made. So on any any journey you have to know where you are right now and start to build a road map to where you want to be. In other words you have to begin to know yourself. So from this context, you should get a notebook and chronicle your days for 2 weeks at the very least. It would be better to do this over a month. In this chronicle, you write down every thing that goes into your mouth during this time period, and I mean everything. You also write how you spend each hour of your day, especially when you are at home after your work day. Then you review it, preferably with someone that you know is actively taking care of their health. You will be shocked at what you are eating and how much time you waste just doing nothing. From this point, if you are true to yourself, the shock you experience will provide you with motivation to begin to do something to change yourself.

Anyway that is the beginning from which you will take your first step on your journey to good health and healing yourself from your illnesses.


Monday, June 24, 2013

Standing Up To Diabetes

My A1C Blood Test
The picture on the left depicts my blood tests measuring my glucose levels since last August. During my recent visit to the doctor he informed me that I do not have diabetes from all indications of the measurement given by the test.

One point in time the doctor said that I had diabetes and put me on medicines, 2 medformin at one time, to lower my blood glucose levels which had gone up to 22 at one point. I went into some sort of funk after that and sort of accepted that I had diabetes since my mom had and various other members of my family. Generally most First Nations people are susceptible to diabetes 2 and this sort of made it easy for me to give up and accept the condition. I guess also I was undergoing some sort of grieving process because I had just lost something and that was my good health. After awhile though I came out of my funk and started researching this diabetes and read lots about it. In the course of doing that I came upon cases where people have stopped the progression of the disease and in fact, in some cases, reversed the disease. It made me remember my mother and how she was able to live with and manage her diabetes until well into her 70's. She remained relatively healthy by eating well and exercising, she walked and ran for an hour each and every day. She used to tell us to do the same thing but of course, in the busyness of life, you have a tendency not to take good advice.

Anyway I was told I had diabetes and it shook me up as I said. But through reading and research the thought formed in my head that I could do something about this disease and I think have. As the numbers indicate on my blood test I do not have diabetes. How have I been able to arrive at this state? A lot of hard work and determination to change the way I thought about my eating and my life style was involved.

When I was young and in high school I was very active and played a lot of sports. As a result I was physically fit. However as I entered my twenties I did not do those things that made me a fit person, I got busy with working and with my family like everyone of you that may be reading this. I had no time to be physically active as I once had been. I was just to tired at the end of the day to even go for a walk. By the time I was in my forties I was quite a bit overweight. My highest weight was 235 lbs.

Anyway back to being told I had diabetes and after the funk, I determined to do something about it as those persons who had overcome this disease. As a beginning I started to walk and just cut in half how much I was eating. Amazingly I lost weight, got down to 220 lbs. in very short order. Through just walking 20 minutes to 30 minutes everyday and weight lifting I maintained this weight for the longest time and actually became physically fit, at least I could walk without huffing and puffing. Anyway after a time I began to think I could lose more weight than I had thus far. It occurred to me that it might have to do with the way I was eating. So back to reading and researching and found that I have to change what was on my plate each day. Through this process I have lost more weight and am now down to 188 lbs.

Today I eat a lot of fruit and vegetables, lean meats like chicken and fish most of the time. Below is a picture of my favourite breakfast smoothie which I make myself most days.

Strawberry/Banana/Peanut Butter Smoothie
The ingredients for this are as follows:

  • 6 to 8 strawberries
  • 1 banana
  • 2 tablespoons of natural peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 1 teaspoon each of pure vanilla extract and ground cinnimon
  • 2 tablespoons of flaxseed meal
  • 1 tablespoon of maca powder
  • 1 tablespoon of ground almond nuts (optional)

Put all these in a blender (this is what you have to invest in, some of these blenders can be pricey but I'm sure when it comes to restoring your good health this won't stand in your way. Buy Kitchenaid brand it is the best) and blend away. Drink it in the morning as your breakfast and you wont feel hunger until well into the afternoon. In the meantime until your next meal, have fruit and veggies as your snacks.

Eating like this will take some time to accomplish. Our systems are so used to sugar processed foods, greasy foods and etc. Taking yourself away from these type of foods will shock your system, at least for the first 2 weeks anyway. But persist and you will come out at the end with more energy and feeling of well-being that you have not experienced for a long time. In fact if you try to eat these foods, greasy and processed foods, after being on this new way of eating for a while you will get sick and be barfing in short order. There are a lot of resources that you can look up that will help you to produce a well thought plan with respect your new way of eating that is easily available these days.

Another thing I do is take supplements to aid in my new way of eating and staying healthy. Some stuff I take are as follows:

  • 1000 IU of vitamin D3
  • 1000 mg of vitamin C
  • Green Coffee Bean Extract 800 mg (2x400mg pills each morning)

Advertisements for the coffee bean extract say that it helps with lowering blood sugar levels. Im not sure if there have been clinical trials to prove this out but what the heck I say to myself. I know in and of itself it may not have made the total difference in my new diabetes outlook. What changed it is my way of thinking and doing things for my health and lifestyle.

There is more to how I have changed my thinking and the process of it that I have not laid out here but I will get to that in later posts. For now I hope that I have encouraged you to change your lifestyle to combat the inevitable illnesses that come at you when you don't take care of yourself.



Saturday, April 27, 2013

Daniel's Diet Challenge and Its Social Impact

In the first chapter of the Book of Daniel in the Bible there is an interesting account of how 4 young men vowed to stay true to healthy living and how this commitment affected a powerful kingdom of their day.

King Nebuchadnezzer of Babylon decided he wanted to implement an equal opportunity program for a minority group within his Kingdom. This he did with the Israelites. He picked the 4 young boys noted above, Daniel,Meshach, Shadrach, and Abednego to be in the program. As part of his program the king ordered that they be fed well with royal rations of food and wine. There must be an account somewhere of what this food was made up of but for sure it was probably a lot of meat and potatoes covered in spice and grease. The young boys decided this would not be good for them so they asked their direct boss to let them eat what they were used to eating. But the direct boss hesitated because he was afraid the King would put him to death if the boys were not up to par physically as the rest of the young people groomed to be part of operation of the Kings palace. Daniel convinced him put him and the 3 others to a ten day test of eating nothing but vegetables and water. The "boss" reluctantly agreed. Well after the 10 day test " was observed that they appeared better and fatter than all the young men who had been eating the royal rations." (Daniel 1:15). Verse 17 continues to say that God gave these young men knowledge and skill in every aspect of literature and wisdom: Daniel himself was especially gifted in understanding visions and dreams. The king was so impressed with these young men that he had them stationed in his court. They were 10 times better than "all the magicians and enchanters in his whole Kingdon".

This story shows that when one is disciplined in looking after themselves in all aspects of their person, intellect, spiritual, and physically your influence to those around you can be profound in a very positive way. When you have a healthy body you will have a clear mind to think about things and have the ability to figure out ways to improve things. As a result, you will be more cognizant of the fact that there is much more than what the physical world shows.

Your influence may not encompass kings and queens but there are people who look to you for things, these could be your family, your kids and grand kids. You want to be be able to be around to see them grow into adulthood and you want to be able to pass on to them wisdom that will keep their worldly loads light. Most of all you want to be able to pass on to them knowledge of a greater power that holds all things together and one that can be trusted through all things. To help them in this, you need to keep yourself fit physically and to keep yourself healthy. To keep healthy you need to eat right. The knowledge to do all this is so profoundly easily available today. You can get this education just by turning on your computer and looking up the required information about good eating. I know that in the remote north or any other remote place for that matter this can be a challenge but nothing is impossible where there is a will. My late mother survived diabetes until she was in her mid-70's and she lived in a challenging environment where proper nutritious food was not so easily available.

So think about it. There are people around you who are counting on you give them that sense that everything will be alright, they will follow your example to attain that sense of security for themselves.


Sunday, March 31, 2013

Losing Weight

Hi, how wonderful that it is you have made it into the year 2013. A new year usually signifies a new resolve to do things differently with your life. One of these "things" almost always is to lose weight and achieve some higher level of fitness than where you currently are. This is a good goal to have. The benefits of achieving it are many e.g., longer life, good quality of life into the golden years, enjoyment of seeing grandchildren reaching adulthood, etc. But what often happens is that many of us fail to hold to this resolve beyond 2 or 3 weeks into January. Why does this happen to us? Why can't we maintain the strength of our resolve beyond this time frame?

I've come to the conclusion that the answer has a lot to do with how we integrate the notion of good health and fitness into a framework where all this becomes a habit. So with that in mind we should not approach our goal of losing weight and increasing our fitness singularly but to develop habits that promote this. How do we do this?

First of all if we analyse our past experiences with this resolve, we always jump into it with tremendous gusto and energy. We get on the treadmill, exercise bike, or whatever form of exercise you go into and go for half an hour, maybe even more; we pump up 50 lbs or 100lbs. Then we get tired out or we hurt ourselves, after this we begin to talk to ourselves that maybe this isn’t for us or we tell ourselves that we don’t have time for this. Pretty soon our resolve gets justified somewhere back into the recesses of our minds until it disappears all together. This is very sad.

So to have a measure of success, take it slow. You wracked up the weight over many years you are not going to take them off in two weeks. Be prepared to devote 5 years or more to reach a good weight and level of fitness that will take you well into your 70’s and 80’s in good condition.

So to start, every morning without fail get on an exercise bike or some form of exercise, maybe running in place at a brisk pace but not so much it kills you in 1 minute, and do this for 5 minutes for one week every day. At the end of the day take a brisk walk for 5 minutes for one week. Doing this won’t tire you out so much but you have to do it every day without fail. Also it feels easy to do; you won’t think that it is an inconvenience to do. Then the following week you add 2 minutes to the 5 minutes of the past weeks exercises for a total of 7 minutes. The next week you add 2 minutes for a total of 9 minutes and so on until you reach 30 minutes for each activity; that is 30 minutes for the mornings exercise whether that’s biking or running in place and 30 minutes of walking. It will take you a total of 14 weeks to get to 30 minutes. By this time you will have trained your mind that this is a way of life and that it is a good way of life. If you miss a day you will feel terrible because it has become ingrained in your mind that you just have to do the exercising. As time moves on and you maintain the new habit the exercising becomes effortless. Your focus on weight loss becomes sort of secondary to the need to have that good feeling that comes from a post workout session. 

Exercising is only a part of developing good habits that will actually see you shed weight. The way you eat will have a lot to do with actually losing more weight than you would if you were to just exercise alone. There is so much material in bookstores about good nutrition and so forth, which will help you in developing a plan for good eating for weight loss. The first step in this matter is to know you eat too much and that you eat all the wrong things. Believe you me this is a very hard thing to do. Nobody likes to be told they are doing things wrong. But it is the way to make real changes in one’s life; in fact it is the only way I think. How do we get started in doing this? Get a notebook and title it however you want, maybe, “How I eat, What I eat, and When”. For everything that goes into your mouth you enter it into your journal. Don’t try reviewing it, just enter it and be truthful about it always. At the end of 2 weeks or even 4 weeks review your journal. You will be shocked at what you have put into yourself in that time period. What will even be more shocking is the realization that you have been doing this for years and years. When you get over the shock you will no longer be able to deny that you may be over eating and eating all kinds of wrong stuff. It is at this time you will be so open to trying to find out what it is you need to do to change things. Again you have to be aware that you can’t change things overnight. Embarking on a self-abusing diet of some sort will not do it. You have to think that it will take some time to lose the weight just like the realization that you had in getting into exercising will take some time to show results. In any event I would suggest you read lots and educate yourself on good nutrition. There is so much material out there to help you. What I would strongly suggest though is to go and see a dietitian or nutritionist. They will help you in your planning how to eat well as well as be a source of accountability in your efforts to develop good habits for good eating.

I am hoping that I was of some help in your resolution towards good health for you and your family in this post-holiday season. It took me a while to figure this out myself. Intellectually, just like you, I’d always known exercising and good eating were the answer to good health but putting into practise was always something that eluded me. Over the last five years I have been able to lose a total of 50 lbs and have maintained a level of fitness that seems to have worked for me. It’s just a matter of forming good habits and thinking that makes the difference, and also finding good role models that encourage you in this endeavor. Mine was my mom who passed away a little over a year ago. She battled diabetes for over 35 years with exercise and good eating. An awesome mom I had.

May all that is good be yours in this New Year of 2013


Douglas Semple

Saturday, March 23, 2013


I'm starting this blog mainly to keep track of my thoughts and personal musings about keeping fit as I move on in my years. I hope I learn new things and hopefully you learn things about the importance of keeping yourself healthy and fit from my random thoughts. Cheers.