Monday, August 11, 2008

Do I look Fat????

This is a question my husband hears weekly from me but I'm getting better. For a lot of us weight gain and loss is an issue!!! Here are my tips for weight loss that have worked for me and many others. Just so you know, I break all of the rules, I am not perfect!

1. Sugar is Sugar is Sugar!! When I say sugar you may picture a bowl of refined white powder but sugars are in everything! When you eat bread the Carbohydrates turn into sugars in your body. Sugars and fats are the easiest things for your body to burn for energy so if you cut them out for a while you body will take it's energy from your fat stores. Once you have got your weight to where you want it you can add back in healthy sugars and Carbs like Oat meal and whole grains even then you need to watch how much you consume.

2. Calories!!! A calorie is a unit of measurement for energy. If you give you body more units of energy than you burn, it stores it as fat! I don't believe in counting every calorie I eat during the day but I did for a little while until I understood just how many calories I was consuming. For instance, one of my favorite lunches was a whole box of Mac and Cheese with two Veggie Hot Dogs in it!!!! I know right! That gave me 1,390 calories!! That is almost my entire recommended daily value of calories for a person my size! I did this with a lot of my "favorite" meals and now can no longer eat any of them because I just can't stomach eating that many unneeded calories. If you want to find out how many calories you favorite meals are go to Nutrition

3. High water / Low sugar fruits. Apples, oranges, bananas and other sweet fruits are so yummy and trick us into thinking we are eating "healthy". Sorry to burst your bubble but, most of those fruits have been breed to have more sugars and less nutrients so that they will be more appealing to the customer! The fruits that I speak of are tomatoes, cucumbers, Bell peppers, and many more! These fruits have less calories and sugar and a lot more nutrients!

4. Dark Leafy Greens, what can I say it's what we are made to eat. You don't even have to count these calories, have as much as you want just don't cook them to death and chew well so you get all of the goodness!

5. Remember that the world is working against you! Sorry! Everywhere you hear advertisements for junkie food and even things that seem good for you like 100% fruit juice(sugar). I try to look at it like Satan is trying to get me to mess up this wonderful body my Heavenly Father gave me and I'm not going to let him.

6. Read the word of Wisdom everyday! There are promises in there that will encourage you and give you strength!

So those are my tidbits, do with them what you will.
Please leave a comment when you read this, I would like to get an Idea of who is reading this blog and I would love to hear any tips that have worked for you. If it is OK for me to comment on your comment please say so. Thanks!

Monday, August 4, 2008

My Goal...

I'm worried that I may have offended people, not just those that have commented to me but others who remain silent.

In my Last post I wrote,

"The Lord says in section 89, "And it is pleasing unto me that they should not be used, only in times of winter, or of cold, or famine." This makes it clear to me that Heavenly Father does not want me to eat animals except for in the dire times that he lists."

I offered up this scripture as Heavenly Father telling us that it would please him if we would not eat animals unless we are in times of winter, or of cold, or of famine. I stand by that. However, I don't believe that anyone should "Convert" to a vegetarian diet by my interpretation alone. Please read section 89 and fast and pray about it. I did and my answer was over whelming (Story for another time) No one can tell anyone how to live their life, because we have free agency we can choose our own paths. I started this blog as an outlet to bear my testimony of what I know to be true. If you have a strong testimony of anything (Christ, the Church, prayer, fasting, or family) It burns in you to share it, right? That is exactly what I am doing, and I feel really good about.

I do not feel good about the idea of offending anyone or making any one feel uncomfortable so I will not use a comment from anyone in my posts because I no longer think it is a good idea. Unless you'd like me to, then you can say so in your comment. If anything in this blog is not to your liking then you can dismiss it as Samantha's rantings and move on :) I love to bear my testimony and this is a very comfortable way for me to do it. I love this Gospel, I love this Church, and I know with all my heart it is true!
Here is a pretty picture of flowers to lighten the mood!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Debate Sparked :)

Jewelianna said...
Bruce R McConkie says in 'Mormon Doctrine' -There is no prohibition in Section 89, for instance, as to the eating of white bread, using white flour, white sugar, cocoa, chocolate, eggs, milk, meat, or anything else, except items classified under the headings, tea, coffee, tobacco, and liquor. As a matter of fact those who command that men should not eat meat, are not ordained of God, such counsel being listed by Paul as an evidence of apostasy. God has created "meats," he says, "to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth." (1 Tim 4:3.)If some particular food or drink disagrees with an individual, then that person should act accordingly without reference to the prohibitions in this particular law of health. (for more of her comment go to the comment section of the previous post)

Bruce R McConkie's book is his opinion and his opinion only. It is not doctrine.

The Lord says in section 89, "And it is pleasing unto me that they should not be used, only in times of winter, or of cold, or famine." This makes it clear to me that Heavenly Father does not want me to eat animals except for in the dire times that he lists.

The second scripture I see misunderstood is Section 49 Verse 18. It reads, "And whoso forbiddeth to abstain from meats, that man should not eat the same, is not ordained of God;" This scripture is often offered up to me as evidence that I am actually wrong for not eating animals. The words are tricky in this verse and I will try my best to get the true meaning across. First it says, "And whoso forbiddeth" So that is referring to the person doing the forbidding. "to abstain from meats." a person who abstains from meat would be me, a vegetarian. So that first part is actually saying, Whoever forbids a person from being a vegetarian. If you know your grammar you now that the commas separating "That man should not eat the same" from the rest of the sentence mean that the sentence was interjected and should be able to be read clearly with or with out the interjection. So, With out the interjection the scripture reads, "And whoso forbiddeth to abstain from meats is not ordained of God." So if some one were telling another person "you need to eat meat", they would not be ordained of God. Now put the interjection back in "that man should not eat the same" That part is speaking about the forbidder. It's saying that not only is forbidding a man not to eat meat not ordained of God but the forbidder should not eat meat either. If you can explain this scripture in a different way I would love to hear it! Or section 89 as well.

I Just want to add that I know the Church of Jesus Christ is true and I know that The prophet is a true prophet and so were the ones that passed before him. I also know that just like me they are not perfect and they do make mistakes. I love this Gospel and I love the people of this church. I am so grateful to be part of two wonderful families with people who care so much about me and my little family.

Thanks Julie for your comments, I really appreciate your open mind and your kind heart!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Why do I abstain from eating animals?

I have gotten a lot of comments from people lately that lead me to believe they don't understand the answer to this question. I'm going to bear my testimony as simply as I can.

First I know that animals have spirits and it is immoral to take their life just so that I can have pleasure. Second, I think the way animals are mass produced for our consumption is not only cruel but is devastating for our planet. Third, it has been shown in numerous studies (If you would like examples go to the Cancer website, the link is to the left) cutting the consumption of animals out of your diet reduces the risk for Cancer , and heart disease and so many other unpleasant things. Forth, I know that my body is a gift from God and that it is my job to care for it in the best way possible. There are many promises in Doctrine and Covenants Section 89 that I would love to obtain. I am in no way perfect and I still have a lot of work to do concerning the things I put into my body, however, I know that I will never again consume another animal unless it is to save my life and even then I would do it with dignity and respect to one of Heavenly Fathers creatures. I write these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

P.S. The comment I have heard most often from SO many people is "Moderation in all things". This comment really confuses me because if I were to do everything moderately then I would smoke a cigarette a day and only one beer a day, only cheat on my husband occasionally... I'm kidding obviously but that statement can only be true if moderation is defined as the "right" amount which could be none at all such as smoking, drinking, and adultery. I've said my two cents and I would LOVE to here your comments. I really would like to here from anyone who has their own two cents. I love sparking debates and learning new things from others.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Super Fast and Easy Veggie Chili

( I use the Morning star veggie crumbles a lot. they can be found by the frozen breakfast stuff. I plan on learning to make my own so I can make it cheaper and when I do I will share that as well!)

My Dad taught me the base of this recipe and me and Nate have tweaked it to our own liking. This is so easy and fast to throw together and is packed with protein!

1 15 oz. Can diced stewed tomatoes, or diced stewed tomatoes with green chilies if you like it hotter!
1 15 oz.Can Ranch Style Beans
1/3 Package of Veggie Crumbles (I use this very sparingly because it is expensive sometimes)
1 15 oz. can of corn drained or 1 cup frozen corn
And anything else you want to throw in there :)

Pour it all into a pot and bring it to a boil then let simmer for five to 10 minutes, until it is heated all of the way through. Serve with cheddar Cheese on top and with salad and multi grain Crackers on the side! Yummy! P.S. Caden loves!!!!! this chili!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

How to get your Spinach!

I don't know about you but I know that spinach is amazing nutritionally, however, I have trouble eating it! If I have it in a salad I have to have it mixed with iceberg and even then I don't eat very much! So when I was in Arizona my dad showed me how to make a spinach drink (He invented) that is not only a power house of nutrition but gives you energy to boot! It's also very low calorie and very filling! When you cook food you are breaking down cell walls so that nutrients can be digested however you are also losing nutrients in the cooking prosses. By blending the spinach you are breaking down every cell wall and not losing any of the good stuff. You body is getting 3 times the nutrients it would be getting if you chewed all of the spinach. I recorded a video of me making it and I feel like such a dork in it but I think it's important to see how it's made. Here is what you will need;


10 frozen or fresh strawberries

1/3 to a 1/2 of lime juice, about four limes

1 packet of Crystal Light


Blend it all together in a blender adding enough water to get it all blended, then top it off with water till it makes a complete gallon.

Caden Loves this drink but I like to make him one that is all Natural (No Crystal light).

1 apple peeled or not

1 cup of Water

2 hand fulls of spinach

I like to blend it all together and add more water if it looks too thick. You can also toss any other fruit in along with it, I've done mango, cantaloupe, strawberries, carrots and others. If you think your child might be weary of drinking something green then put it in one of these green cup lid straw combos that you can get at any store for pretty cheap. Now, Caden loves this drink and begs for more but he's never had full strength juice so his taste buds aren't spoiled yet, if you find that your child doesn't like it, add some apple juice and then each time you make it add a little less apple juice. You can also add less spinach at first and work you way up.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Three Bean Veggie Tacos!

This is an absolute Favorite at our house! We have had lots of non vegetarian friends over who loved it!

What you will deed:

Taco shells, how ever you like them! We do Corn tortillas fried and salted

1 Bag of Morningstar Crumbles

1 Can of Dark Red kidney beans

1 Can of black beans

1 packet of Taco seasoning

Ketchup (secret ingredient, shhhhh)

1 Can of refried beans





Pour Crumbles, taco seasoning(follow packet instruction for how much water to add), and a good squirt of ketchup into a skillet start heating on medium while you open the kidney beans and black beans. Drain and rinse to get all of the sugars and preservatives off and add half a can of each to the skillet, Mix the rest together in a Tupperware and save for next time or as a snack for the kids, Caden loves them fresh out of the fridge. Set the skillet to a nice simmer, stirring occasionally while you cut lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and heat the refried beans(Microwave, I'm lazy!). You can build your taco however you want but the Packer family style is; Tortilla, refried beans, taco mixture, cheese, lettuce and tomato! This is a delicious meal packed with protein and by adding the inexpensive beans it fills it out add makes the more expensive Veggie crumbles go a long way! Let me know if anyone tries it!

Monday, June 30, 2008

Cancer, Nutrition, and the Word of Wisdom

Photo by Summer Drake, Pikes Place Market
By William T. Stephenson, MDDr. Stephenson is a physician at Kansas City Cancer Center, Kansas City, Missouri. He also has a degree in nutrition from Brigham Young University and currently serves as a bishop.

William T. Stephenson, “Cancer, Nutrition, and the Word of Wisdom: One Doctor’s Observations,” Ensign, Jul 2008, 42–47
Knowing our health and our spirituality are interrelated, I would like to offer a few medical insights into what the scientific world is learning about cancer.
Doctrine and Covenants 89, known commonly as the Word of Wisdom, is a remarkable revelation given to the Prophet Joseph Smith almost 175 years ago—long before there was any scientific proof to influence him on issues of health.
Though at first reading, Doctrine and Covenants 89 may seem to be simply a list of dos and don’ts about such nonspiritual topics as tobacco, alcohol, and diet, it is much more. The Lord says, “all things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal” (D&C 29:34).
On Tobacco
“And again, tobacco is not for the body, neither for the belly, and is not good for man” (D&C 89:8).
While studying cancer medicine at Indiana University, I was assigned to the oncology clinic at the Veterans Administration hospital there. The patients I saw were almost all heavy current or former smokers. They came in with lung cancers, bladder cancers, esophageal cancers, and other smoking-related malignancies. At the same time, they had emphysema and heart disease made worse by years of tobacco use, rendering their treatments both more difficult and less effective.
Tobacco has now been linked to many types of cancer, including lung, bladder, esophagus, head and neck, throat, cervix, stomach, pancreas, and kidney cancers, as well as acute myeloid leukemia.1 Lung cancer, however, is foremost among them. Smoking causes about 90 percent of male lung cancer deaths, about 80 percent of female lung cancer deaths,2 and a total of approximately 440,000 deaths annually.3
A 2004 report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that “compared to nonsmokers, men who smoke are about 23 times more likely to develop lung cancer, and women who smoke are about 13 times more likely.”4 In addition, smoking is a major cause of emphysema, coronary heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, infertility, dental diseases, and other diseases.5
On Hot Drinks and Caffeine
“And again, hot drinks are not for the body or belly” (D&C 89:9).
The consumption of coffee or tea, whether hot or cold, is recognized by the Church as a violation of the Word of Wisdom. Coffee and tea contain substances such as caffeine, which has been linked to disease. While the Word of Wisdom does not specifically mention caffeine, it is commonly understood in the medical community that higher doses of caffeine are associated with infertility, Meniere’s disease (a disease affecting balance), insomnia, sudden infant death syndrome (with maternal consumption in utero), and fibrocystic disease of the breasts. In addition, gastric acid disease (ulcers of the stomach and duodenum) may also be linked to consumption of both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee, lending credence to the Word of Wisdom’s advice to avoid “hot drinks.” From the perspective of medical science, most investigators who have examined the effects of caffeine suggest that caffeinated beverages should not be consumed in large quantities.6
On Alcohol
“Inasmuch as any man drinketh wine or strong drink among you, behold it is not good. … And, again, strong drinks are not for the belly, but for the washing of your bodies”(D&C 89:5, 7).
The Word of Wisdom is clear on this point. Among doctors, as a result of scientific studies, it is commonly accepted that alcohol consumption is associated with cancers of the esophagus, liver, and pancreas. A relationship between alcohol and the development of breast cancer has been debated for years. The largest study on this subject was presented recently. The Nurses’ Health Study, a study of 121,700 nurses followed over a 20-year period, found that even modest alcohol intake was associated with an increased risk of postmenopausal breast cancer.7
On Dietary Recommendations
Although we often consider the verses teaching us to avoid alcohol, tobacco, and hot drinks to be the most important parts of the Word of Wisdom, the larger portion of this revelation is actually devoted to teaching us what we should consume: wheat, other grains, fruits, and vegetables. Grains are mentioned repeatedly in this revelation, with special mention of “wheat for man” in verse 17.
“And again, verily I say unto you, all wholesome herbs God hath ordained for the constitution, nature, and use of man—
“Every herb in the season thereof, and every fruit in the season thereof; all these to be used with prudence and thanksgiving.
“Yea, flesh also of beasts and of the fowls of the air, I, the Lord, have ordained for the use of man with thanksgiving; nevertheless they are to be used sparingly;
“And it is pleasing unto me that they should not be used, only in times of winter, or of cold, or famine.
“All grain is ordained for the use of man and of beasts, to be the staff of life, …
“All grain is good for the food of man; as also the fruit of the vine; …
“Nevertheless, wheat for man” (D&C 89:10–14, 16–17).
What does medical science teach us about this kind of diet? Certainly all kinds of diets are being recommended by one seeming authority or another. The diets in fashion change from year to year. Consistently over the years, however, the evidence favors a diet in keeping with the recommendations contained in the Word of Wisdom. The medical community widely accepts that a low-fat diet consisting mostly of complex carbohydrates found in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, along with limited amounts of nuts and high-protein foods like low-fat meats, is associated with lower incidences of disease and a longer life.
The benefits of this type of diet are likely related to many different interrelated nutritional factors. For example, such a diet is naturally low in fat. I recently attended the American Society of Clinical Oncology meetings, where I heard research presented on postmenopausal women who had undergone treatment for early-stage breast cancer. Women who followed a low-fat diet, which was remarkably similar to the foods recommended in the Word of Wisdom, were less likely to have their breast cancer return after treatment.8
On Nutrition and Cancer Prevention
It would be impractical to discuss all the data in support of the dietary principles promoted by the Word of Wisdom, but I would like to review a few examples from the cancer literature that I find particularly interesting.
Several studies have looked at the ability of vitamin supplements in pill form to prevent cancer. One study examined male smokers from Finland who took vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) and vitamin A (beta carotene) in tablet form. The results were unexpected. The authors found no reduction in the incidence of lung cancer among these smokers after five to eight years of dietary supplementation with alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E); they found an 18 percent increased risk of lung cancer among those supplemented with beta carotene (vitamin A).9
In several follow-up studies, participants were asked to give dietary histories showing what kinds of foods they commonly ate.10 The results were also surprising. Those individuals who had the highest intake of fruits and vegetables had a lower incidence of lung cancer.11 The best results were seen in individuals with diets high in vitamin A–rich foods, such as tomatoes and dark green or dark yellow vegetables and fruits. A second study, the Beta-Carotene and Retinol Efficacy Trial (CARET) Study, confirmed these results.12 Other studies have also confirmed the value of eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables.
Additional studies have linked diets high in whole grains and rich in fiber to lower incidences of colon and other cancers. Nuts also appear to be important and could logically be included in the Word of Wisdom’s “fruit of the vine” (D&C 89:16).
In a modern world we often look for easy ways to live healthily by substituting fad diets or pills for healthy eating habits. Many fad diets promote the opposite of the Word of Wisdom, including diets high in meat and fat, which may temporarily lower weight. However, research indicates that a diet following the recommendations outlined in section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants, consisting primarily of grains, fruits, and vegetables, is generally considered the healthiest way to eat.
On Cancer Incidence and Longevity
Science has also looked specifically at Latter-day Saints to see if our health practices influence our chances of getting cancer. The results are encouraging.
When looking at Latter-day Saints living in Utah, one study found a 24 percent lower rate of developing cancer. Looking at just smoking-related cancers, the study found a 50 percent lower incidence in men and a 60 percent lower incidence in women compared to the U.S. rate.13
A University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) study of Latter-day Saint high priests in California found they were about 50 percent less likely to die from cancer and 70 percent less likely to die of tobacco-related cancers than the general population.”14
Life expectancy for Latter-day Saint males living in Utah is 7.3 years longer than their non-LDS counterparts. Female Latter-day Saints appear to live longer too—an average of 5.8 years.15
Standards for Temporal Health
While the Word of Wisdom does not rely on scientific proof, it has stood the test of time, and science is slowly proving the truths it contains. The Lord revealed and the Prophet Joseph Smith taught important standards for temporal health that science is now corroborating many decades later.
Thanks to the recommendations contained in section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants, Latter-day Saints live longer and are less likely to get cancer. Although members of the Church often focus on aspects relating to avoiding smoking, alcohol consumption, coffee, and tea, the Word of Wisdom provides further direction for blessing Latter-day Saints. Eating a diet consisting primarily of wheat and grain products, fruits, and vegetables, as outlined in the revelation, is being shown scientifically to be the best possible way to eat. Since the Lord promises that those who follow these teachings will have “health in their navel and marrow to their bones” (v. 18) and will “find wisdom and great treasures of knowledge, even hidden treasures” (v. 19), I am eager to do all I can to live by the precepts taught in the Word of Wisdom.