Awakening Internal

Personal growth through the eyes of love


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Transformation Tuesday…Transformation Life

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My before picture was taken in my parents kitchen in October 2002 and it stirs so much emotion in my core. A stay at home mother of 4, a wife of almost 7 years, a sister to 2, an aunt to many and more friends than I could count. I was VERY involved in the school my oldest two children were attending, church and religion; wrapped up in the legalities of religion and working nearly full time, volunteering on just about every committee at church, plus doing a weekly, intense bible study that involved an hour or more of study/homework daily! Oh, and did I mention that I’m very OCD over my house and IT.WAS.IMMACULATE. My youngest two children were dressed in boutique attire, my oldest two were involved in sports every season, music lessons, school…..YOU NAME IT! WHEW! I’m tired just thinking about it!!!

Why does my before picture stir so much emotion? Because when I look at my picture, and I will never forget, how deeply I was hurting, how worthless I thought I was, how desperately I wanted to be loved and how desperately I wanted to love and how much I HATED myself. NOW, on the “love front”, I have to give a very insightful disclaimer: Even if I had someone in my life, at the time, that loved me completely, respected me, cherished me and saw my value, I could not have handled it at all because I thought I was worthless and would have never believed in a million years that I would have deserved such a blessing. So, at that time, I had what I felt I deserved.

You might be looking at my before and after picture wondering, HOW did she make such a physical change? Well, it was a process…first physical, then internal, then BOTH. You see, inside my 258 pound body, was ME! I was hiding, building a physical wall around me. This wall was built to protect me from more pain, it ALWAYS gave me great ways to judge and punish myself and make great excuses for when I was rejected or cheated on ( “I don’t blame him for cheating…LOOK AT ME!!!” “I wouldn’t want to have sex with me either, I’m disgusting!!!” and the horrible dialogue went on and on…). In November 2002, I reached out to a doctor to have weight loss surgery (out of serious desperation!!) and in my mind, this was going to solve all of my problems. I had gastric bypass January 31, 2003 and 10 1/2 months later, I was a very healthy weight and wearing my goal size…..yay!!!!!!!! Transformation complete, right??!! My life was NOW perfect, right???!! This solved all of my problems, right??!! Not hardly, the only two things in my life that changed was 1- I couldn’t really use food as a vice anymore and 2- My dress size. My weight loss provided more energy for me to do even more…which kept me busy enough to not have to think..which was the subconscious goal!! I was still being rejected, I STILL wasn’t “enough” to keep his attention and I still thought I was a worthless piece of trash. In September 2004, my marriage came to a point of crisis and we started marriage counseling and then I started one on one counseling…this started my internal changes. My marriage survived another 8-9 years (by the skin of its teeth!), and over that 9 years I dove head first into personal growth and healing. During this 8-9 years, Bikram Hot Yoga was the biggest part of my life for a year (2008) thanks to vanity and pride….seeking to seal the physical transformation, but received a much greater gift…major internal work, spiritual healing and love from a community of the most loving people…WHO KNEW I would gain so much from a great “workout”??!! Through connections, I was introduced to people that, unknowingly at the time, were guiding me on my path to the health/wellness industry.

NOW my life is perfect, right?? Well, yes and no. Yes, because I’m right where I’m supposed to be for a season but it is a challenging season, so it doesn’t “feel” perfect. As I have learned with all of my personal life experiences though, there are no mistakes and everything happens for a reason. There are clear perfections in my life and some of them are my children and my 7 month old granddaughter, check her out!! (what kind of Yaya would I be if I didn’t show her off?!)

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Another perfection in my life, is my relationship with my boyfriend. I am genuinely respected, genuinely cherished, he knows my value and he can see into the depth of my soul and loves me like no other. One of the beautiful aspects of this for me personally, is that because I learned to love myself, I can NOW handle the love that I was so desperate for, many years ago!

Do you have a transformation story to share? Does this article resonate with you and/or help you? I would love to hear from you in the comments section or if you would like to share privately, feel free to email me at michelledancy.healthcoach@gmail.com

Through The Eyes of Love,

Michelle Dancy, CHHC, AADP

Awakening Holistic Healthcare
http://awakening-internal.com

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Do You Feel….YOU?????

I read something this week that really resonated with me,from the book Slow Sex by Nicole Daedone.  She is talking about how people, women specifically, have been trained to not feel sensation.  Nicole gives the following example: a mother is taking her little girl to her first day of kindergarten and the little girl states that she has butterflies in her stomach.  Her mother dismisses the feeling that is in her daughter’s belly by stating that she’s just nervous.  Now, in my opinion, the mother has 100% good intentions, but isn’t this the beginning of being taught to not being present with what’s going on inside of us? Is this resonating with you already? Does this training spill over into every other area of your life?    Does this mentality spill over into your sensual life..your sensual self? It did mine! Ever since I read this, I have been very intentional about “feeling” and being really in tune with WHAT I’m feeling specifically in my body..paying attention to my core.  Do you see how being intentional about “feeling” what’s going on inside of you could be so beneficial on SO many levels?
We are taught as women to “hide”our sensuality, so we are deemed as “good girls”, but our sensual selves is WHO WE ARE and it’s natural and normal, it doesn’t make us “bad girls”!
This weekend and week ahead, be very intentional about “feeling” what you have going on inside of you and embrace it..Good or unpleasant and see what kind of shift happens in you personally.  There is no right or wrong way to feel what you’re feeling.  Honor where you are, acknowledge where you are, be present and LOVE yourself for it!!

Through The Eyes of Love,
Michelle Dancy, CHHC, AADP
michelle.manning@awakening-internal.com


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What is a Holistic Health Coach?

I get the question all of the time….”What is it you do exactly??”

First things first, what in the heck does “Holistic” mean??  My little handy dandy dictionary app defines holistic as 1. “incorporating the concept of holism in theory or practice: holistic psychology” 2. “Medicine/Medical.  Identifying with principles of holism in a system of therapeutics, especially one considered outside the mainstream of scientific medicine, as naturopathy or chiropractic, and often involving nutritional measures: holistic medicine.”.  Synonyms (adjective: complete, whole) are listed as:  Aggregate, comprehensive, entire, full, integrated, total and universal.  Synonyms (adjective: of broad-ranging consciousness-raising movement) are listed as: Age of Aquarius, alternative, astrological, balanced, crystal healing, holistic, mystic, occult, planetary, spiritual, supernaturalist.  Synonyms (adjective: good for health) are listed as:  Healthy, holistic, salubrious, wholesome.  Antonyms:  unhealthy.  My definition in layman’s terms: holistic is working with a client/patient as a WHOLE person and at every level:  Physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.  Each of us are made up of 3 parts, the physical body, the spirit and our mind/emotions.  If one of our 3 parts is out of balance and/or sick, then it will affect the other 2 parts. Example:  Suzy Q can eat as clean and eat exactly what her body needs to be at optimum health BUT if Suzy Q has a stressful job, that she dreads going to and absolutely hates, then this WILL affect her physically, potentially raising blood pressure, causing belly fat and/or disrupting sleep.   Make sense???

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Who do I work with?

I work with clients that want to:  lose weight, eat healthier, manage stress, sleep well, heal their bodies naturally, have better relationships, want to live life to the fullest, enhance and grow their spiritual life, have success with weight loss surgery, learn to love themselves, have fulfilling sex lives, have a better quality of life, manage their time more efficiently, cook more.

Example:  I have a client that started with me when she was 38 and she has Graves Disease. Her Doctor’s RX was to do radiation on her thyroid, but of course, my client didn’t want to do this if it wasn’t necessary.  She came to me with hopes of learning some ways to tweak her diet and lifestyle in order to just regulate her thyroid levels; stress and diet impact the thyroid and was contributing to her levels being off.  By the end of her six month program with me, she went for a check up with her doctor and her levels were regulated, yay!!  Two months later, her levels were actually improved and her doctor has finally told her that she will leave her alone with regards to doing radiation on her thyroid…again, YAY!!!!  I am SO super proud of my client, because without her actually doing the “work”, nothing would’ve changed for her.

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What is my approach? 

Well, that depends on YOU!  Nutritionally, I take a bio individuality approach with each of my clients. What is bio individuality??  Bio individuality recognizes that everyone is a unique individual that has nutritional and physical activity requirements based on that uniqueness to reach optimum health.  In other words, food that is healthy and healing for me, could be poison for you.  Physical activity- same thing, everyone is different.  Example:  Your body may thrive on walking two miles a day, gentle yoga or a quick bike ride, whereas, my body NEEDS 90 minutes of KICK ASS, balls to the wall physical activity, 6 days a week, whether it’s Hot Yoga, running or an intense bike ride ALL uphill to be at optimum health.  Spirituality- I meet my clients where they “are”, through the eyes of love and support them through their journey to becoming fulfilled in their spiritual life, whatever that may look like for them.

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When do I work with my clients?

I typically work with my clients twice a month, either in my office face to face or through a phone or Skype appointment.  Through technology, I can literally work with anyone, anywhere in the world.  My clients have ongoing support from me between appointments through my private Facebook page (that is for my clients only) and through email, text or phone.  The first appointment is a Consultation Session, or as I like to call it, a Breakthrough Session.  During the Breakthrough Session, we cover concerns, goals and decide what the best approach is to help them reach their goals.

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My heart!

I DO LOVE each and every one of my clients SO much!  Each of them have impacted me in such a way, that I’m a better person for knowing them and for them making me apart of their lives.  I learn from each of my clients and feel my spirits lift each time I see them.  My heart is for each one to see themselves through the eyes of love and to see themselves as the perfection that they are! I thrive on the breakthroughs, the light bulb moments and the tears of healing…because I love the person in front of me and he or she deserves the absolute best that life has to offer them ♥

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How can you start YOUR process?

It’s actually very simple, just the way I like it!  Just visit my website by clicking here to get even more info.  From the landing page (home page),  click on the “Connect” tab and choose “health forms” from the drop down menu, then just submit your health form once you fill it out.  Once I receive it, I will contact you to set up your BREAKTHROUGH SESSION!  See….isn’t that easy!?

Feel free to share this article and if  you still have questions, or you have any comments, please feel free to drop a line below in the comments section….I love to hear from you!!

Through The Eyes of Love,

Michelle Dancy, CHHC, AADP

 


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What Are GMO’s Anyway??

You hear a lot about GMO’s these days.  What is the best way to avoid GMO’s?  Eat organic, whole foods!  What exactly is a GMO?  Genetically modified foods have had foreign genes inserted into their genetic codes.

“Genes change every day by natural mutation and recombination, creating new biological variations. Humans have been exploiting this for centuries—shuffling genes in increasingly systematic ways and using extensive crossing and artificial selection—to create many combinations that would never otherwise have occurred. Just about everything we eat is derived from livestock, crops, and microorganisms bred specifically to provide food. Humans have also redistributed genes geographically: the soybean is native to Asia but is now grown throughout the Americas, and the potato, native to the American continent, is grown throughout the temperate world. DNA has never been “static,” neither naturally nor at the hand of people.

Genetic modification is an extension of this. However, unlike conventional breeding, in which new assortments of genes are created more or less at random, it allows specific genes to be identified, isolated, copied, and introduced into other organisms in much more direct and controlled ways. The most obvious difference from conventional breeding is that genetic modification allows us to transfer genes between species.”  Leighton@campden.co.uk

The average American’s diet relies heavily on corn, not so much in its vegetable form, which is okay in moderation but in its more toxic forms like high-fructose corn syrup, which is found in a lot of the fake, processed foods available in your grocery store or restaurants.  If you are vegan or vegetarian, you probably get soy in your diet as a protein substitute.

Potential benefits of genetically engineered food include:

  • More nutritious food
  • Tastier food
  • Disease and drought-resistant plants that require fewer environmental resources (water, fertilizer, etc.)
  • Decreased use of pesticides
  • Increased supply of food with reduced cost and longer shelf life
  • Faster growing plants and animals
  • Food with more desirable traits, such as potatoes that absorb less fat when fried
  • Medicinal foods that could be used as vaccines or other medications

Potential risks include:

  • Modified plants or animals may have genetic changes that are unexpected and harmful.
  • Modified organisms may interbreed with natural organisms and out-compete them, leading to extinction of the original organism or to other unpredictable environmental effects.
  • Plants may be less resistant to some pests and more susceptible to others.

It is easy to see that there are perceivable benefits to genetically modifying our foods.  It is less apparent to many that there can be a huge and detrimental impact upon our health by eating the same.  So…what should we do?

  1. Remove processed foods from your diet and eat whole foods.
  2. Eat animal protein that is organic and naturally raised.

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It’s virtually impossible to provide a complete list of genetically modified food (GM food) in the United States because there aren’t any laws for genetically modified crops!

Some estimates say as many as 30,000 different products on grocery store shelves are “modified.” That’s largely because many processed foods contain soy. Half of North America’s soy crop is genetically engineered!

 

Rapeseed – Resistance to certain pesticides and improved rapeseed cultivars to be free of erucic acid and glucosinolates. Gluconsinolates, which were found in rapeseed meal leftover from pressing, are toxic and had prevented the use of the meal in animal feed. In Canada, where “double-zero” rapeseed was developed, the crop was renamed “canola” (Canadian oil) to differentiate it from non-edible rapeseed.

 

Honey – Honey can be produced from GM crops. Some Canadian honey comes from bees collecting nectar from GM canola plants. This has shut down exports of Canadian honey to Europe.

 

Cotton – Resistant to certain pesticides – considered a food because the oil can be consumed. The introduction of genetically engineered cotton plants has had an unexpectedly effect on Chinese agriculture. The so-called Bt cotton plants that produce a chemical that kills the cotton bollworm have not only reduced the incidence of the pest in cotton fields, but also in neighboring fields of corn, soybeans, and other crops.

 

Rice – Genetically modified to contain high amounts of Vitamin A. Rice containing human genes is to be grown in the US. Rather than end up on dinner plates, the rice will make human proteins useful for treating infant diarrhea in the developing world.

 

Soybean – Genetically modified to be resistant to herbicides – Soy foods including, soy beverages, tofu, soy oil, soy flour, lecithin. Other products may include breads, pastries, snack foods, baked products, fried products, edible oil products and special purpose foods.

 

Sugar cane – Made resistant to certain pesticides. A large percentage of sweeteners used in processed food actually come from corn, not sugar cane or beets. Genetically modified sugar cane is regarded so badly by consumers at the present time that it could not be marketed successfully.

 

Tomatoes – Made for a longer shelf life and to prevent a substance that causes tomatoes to rot and degrade.

 

Corn – Resistant to certain pesticides – Corn oil, flour, sugar or syrup. May include snack foods, baked goods, fried foods, edible oil products, confectionery, special purpose foods, and soft drinks.

 

Sweet Corn – Genetically modified to produces its own insecticide. Officials from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have said that thousands of tonnes of genetically engineered sweet corn have made their way into the human food supply chain, even though the produce has been approved only for use in animal feed. Recently Monsanto, a biotechnology food producer, said that about half of the USA’s sweet corn acreage has been planted with genetically modified seed this year.

 

Canola – Canola oil. May include edible oil products, fried foods, and baked products, snack foods.

 

Potatoes – (Atlantic, Russett Burbank, Russet Norkatah, and Shepody) – May include snack foods, processed potato products and other processed foods containing potatoes.

 

Flax – More and more food products contain flax oil and seed because of their excellent nutritional properties. No genetically modified flax is currently grown. Herbicide-resistant GM flax was introduced in 2001, but was soon taken off the market because European importers refused to buy it.

Papaya – The first virus resistant papayas were commercially grown in Hawaii in 1999. Transgenic papayas now cover about one thousand hectares, or three quarters of the total Hawaiian papaya crop. Monsanto, donated technology to Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, for developing a papaya resistant to the ring spot virus in India.

 

Squash – (yellow crookneck) – Some zucchini and yellow crookneck squash are also GM but they are not popular with farmers.

 

Red-hearted chicory – (radicchio) – Chicory (Cichorium intybus var. foliosum) is popular in some regions as a salad green, especially in France and Belgium. Scientists developed a genetically modified line of chicory containing a gene that makes it male sterile, simply facilitating the production of hybrid cultivars. Today there is no genetically modified chicory on the market.

 

Cotton Seed Oil – Cottonseed oil and linters. Products may include blended vegetable oils, fried foods, baked foods, snack foods, edible oil products, and small goods casings.

 

Tobacco -The company Vector has a GMO tobacco being sold under the brand of Quest® cigarettes in the U.S. It is engineered to produce low or no nicotine.

 

Meat – Meat and dairy products usually come from animals that have eaten GM feed.

 

Peas – Genetically modified (GM) peas created immune responses in mice, suggesting that they may also create serious allergic reactions in people. The peas had been inserted with a gene from kidney beans, which creates a protein that acts as a pesticide.

 

Vegetable Oil – Most generic vegetable oils and margarines used in restaurants and in processed foods in North America are made from soy, corn, canola, or cottonseed. Unless these oils specifically say “Non-GMO” or “Organic,” it is probably genetically modified.

 

Sugar beets – May include any processed foods containing sugar.

 

Dairy Products – About 22 percent of cows in the U.S. are injected with recombinant (genetically modified) bovine growth hormone (rbGH).

 

Vitamins – Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is often made from corn, vitamin E is usually made from soy. Vitamins A, B2, B6, and B12 may be derived from GMOs as well as vitamin D and vitamin K may have “carriers” derived from GM corn sources, such as starch, glucose, and maltodextrin.

So, on this note, like I said at the beginning of this article, the BEST way to avoid GMO’s, is to eat organic, whole foods.  Stay away from processed food and it is very important to cook at home as much as you can; by cooking at home, you know exactly what you’re getting!!

If you enjoyed this article, feel free to share or comment below!  I love hearing from each and everyone of you!

Visit my website at http://michelle-manning.healthcoach.integrativenutrition.com/

Sources

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1046/j.1365-313X.2001.01119.x/full

http://www.umm.edu/ency/article/002432.htm

http://www.disabled-world.com/fitness/gm-foods.php#ixzz1urCkFYvD

http://www.bmj.com/content/318/7183/581.short

http://archlinux.arch.ttu.edu/w/images/d/d8/Genetically_Modified_Foods.pdf

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/285/5426/384.short

http://promitheas.iacm.forth.gr/lm/?p=2463


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Banana Bread-Gluten and Dairy Free

Banana Bread

I have taken a favorite recipe of mine, from my mother and tweaked it so I can have a gluten and dairy free version of banana bread, being that I’m intolerant to both gluten and dairy.  A lot of the time, when I purchase gluten and dairy free breads, I find that they are dry and a little tough…but you will NOT find that with this recipe!!  This banana bread is moist and I mean MOIST and very soft…probably because we really didn’t even give them time to cool down before we started shoving them in our pie hole!!

INGREDIENTS:

Not quite ¾ cup of Grade B maple syrup (organic)

½ cup earth balance shortening

3 ripe bananas (organic)

2 eggs well beaten (local, organic)

1 1/3 Bob’s Red Mill Flour

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/3 cup chopped pecans (organic)

Directions:

Cream syrup and shortening together then add bananas and eggs. Put flour, salt and baking soda together separately and mix.  Blend wet and dry ingredients and pecans but don’t over mix.  Bake in a loaf pan for 50 minutes at 350 degrees or in a muffin pan for approximately 12-15 minutes.

When you try this recipe, please comment on this post and let me know just how DELISH you think it is too!!!


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Pumpkin Soup

 

Tis Punkin’ Season!!!

It’s amazing how my body craves foods that are in season. This is something that started about 3-4 years ago for me. Craving foods that are in season; this is how our bodies are designed to operate and if our digestion is working correctly and addictions aren’t driving our cravings, then our bodies will crave what our bodies need AND seasonal. Today I threw together a new creation that I wanted to share with you.

Pumpkin Soup
(It’s important to use organic ingredients every opportunity you can)

Put a spoonful of ghee, butter, earth balance (whatever you use for butter) in your pan to melt.
Puree a few carrots, quarter of a sweet onion, half of a clove of garlic and coconut milk. Add pureed mixture to melted butter and stir in one can of pumpkin. Add a pack of stevia, honey or maple syrup (whatever you prefer),a little vanilla, cinnamon, salt and pepper to taste. Add additional coconut milk if needed to reach desired consistency. Bring to a slow boil, slowly stirring the whole time and cut heat down to low for five minutes.

It’s ready to eat! I did grind a little salt and pepper on top once in my bowl and its delicious!

Let me know if you try it and I’d love to hear what you think about it!  Start to finish took me about 10-15 minutes total, super quick and super easy!

 

Pumpkin Soup


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Homemade Veggie Soup

Homemade Veggie Soup

Ingredients:

2 Free Range Chicken Legs

2 tablespoons Organic, cold pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 Cartons of Organic Vegetable Soup Broth

2 Cloves of garlic (1-keep whole, just peeled and 1-minced)

Organic Kale (washed and torn from the stem, tear into bite size pieces)

Organic Onion (sliced and diced)

Organic Carrots (julienne)

Organic Parsnips (peel with carrot peeler and julienne)

Organic Cauliflower

Organic Celery (julienne)

5 Organic Red Potatoes (halve and slice)

Directions:

Boil chicken legs with a clove of garlic, salt and pepper
In a separate pot, sauté onions and fresh, minced garlic in two tablespoons of olive oil with salt and pepper, until tender.
Add two cartons of organic vegetable broth.
Meantime, julianne carrots and parsnips, halve and slice 5 red potatoes. Chop cauliflower and celery.
When chicken is falling off of the bone, discard the skin and bones and combine the chicken, veggie broth and the broth from the boiled chicken. Add all veggies and simmer until the potatoes are tender, last five minutes add kale.

This would be great to make on Sunday to have for the week. It’s so good that you won’t even want to grab a bite to eat while you’re out and about because you will know you have this waiting for you, ENJOY!!
Homemade Veggie Soup