Mar 31, 2013


There is a lot of confusion as to which order we should apply skin care products to the skin. So I thought I would put together a 'Quick & Easy' list of the basic and most common items used with their order of application.

Vit C Serum
Sunscreen and Moisturizer.
*If using a Chemical SS this needs to be applied *before* moisturizer. If using a Physical SS which are products that contain Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide these can be applied *before or after* moisturizer, whichever you prefer.
Primer (if you use it)
Cleanser *Please Note* If you use a Physical SS during the day you will need to remove this with an Oil Cleanser. If you use a Chemical SS you can use whichever cleanser you prefer.
Niacinamide Toner
(wait 15 minutes)
Vit C Serum
Wait 15 minutes
Retin A
Hydroquinone (if used)
Both the Retin A & Hydroquinone can be applied together by mixing in the palm of the hand first if preferred.
If you would like to introduce an AHA product into your routine this needs to be used in the P.M and alternated between the use of Retin A for example:
Monday & Thursday use AHA products and omit Retin A use
Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday use Retin A and omit AHA use

Mar 23, 2013

Weight Loss Tips

Signs of Food Addiction

Eating more than planned especially when you start eating certain foods.
The need to keep eating certain foods even if you're no longer hungry.
The need to eat certain foods on a regular basis.
The ice cream in the refrigerator or potato chips in the pantry 'speak to you'.


I have a dear friend who has a very addictive personality when it comes to food and soda. She is in complete denial but to the experienced eye it is very obvious. She cannot (and I mean cannot) have one of it a piece of candy or a can of soda. I have never seen her leave anything on her plate and amazingly this has not affected her weight significantly (she hovers between 5-10 lbs above her ideal). She is an intelligent women who is fully aware as to the consequences this will eventually have on her health and therefore has moments of 'clarity' and a resolve to stop these bad habits. Her determination and desire to overcome is genuine but no matter how hard she tries she 'always' ends up falling off the wagon.

Eventually, the food that gives you that feeling of satisfaction and 'high' will eventually cease to do so, and you will convince yourself that you eat it because you 'want too' rather than because you 'need too'. You will then, either increase the quantity (causing weight increase) or swap your vice for something different but equally unhealthy. (See the pattern here)?



We are often told by the multi billion dollar weight loss industry that we should not 'deprive ourselves' of anything. That we can eat that chocolate bar and still lose weight. Well that may be okay for some but for those of us that have food addictions this is not the case. In fact this advice is a recipe for failure and disaster!


You wake up in the morning swearing today’s the day when you’ll quit the candy, potato chips, fast food (what ever your vice is). You prepare a healthy bowl of oatmeal with chopped banana then 'bam' you remember that there is left overs of your favorite pastry in the pantry. You convince yourself that 'just one bite' wont do any harm but within moments you find yourself wolfing down the whole thing and wanting more. When you finally come down from your sugar high, and the reality of what you’ve done begins to settle in, the cycle of shame, guilt and sometimes disgust take over followed by 'I cant do this so why even bother'!


1: Start to recognize and list the foods that you have no control over. The things that you know you cannot just eat 'one piece of', the things that 'speak' to you from the refrigerator or pantry. Only you know what they are! This list may not be as long as you think but recognition is the first step to conquering and taking control of your addiction.

2: Remove the above from your diet exceptions!
Will this be difficult? Absolutely. This will take 28 days in total for you to lose the 'craving'. If you manage 10 days then fall of the wagon start the 28 days from scratch. This will be the most difficult part of the whole journey but so worth the end result!

Post or Pre Menopausal Diet

In my experience a low carb diet works best for those post or premenopausal. Taking it to extremes is not a requirement. I choose limit my intake of bread, pasta and refined sugar to a bare minimum and get my good fats from:
Greek yogurt
Olive Oil
Fatty Fish (tuna, Salmon,Mackerel)
Omega 3 supplements
When I first started eating this way many years ago my weight loss was very noticeable mainly due to the fact that I switched from a high carb/sugar diet therefore I lost fat quite quickly.
On the occasion's I have regressed from a low carb regime I am very aware as to how sluggish I feel along with becoming bloated around my mid section and I quickly revert back on track!


Like most medication, diet pills (either FX or OTC) have a lot of controversy attached to them. The majority of OTC diet pills are nothing more than caffeine stimulants that just give you the jitters. However, there are numerous FX diet pills that do give outstanding results:


This works by blocking approximately 30% of dietary fat being absorbed by your body


Meridia is an appetite suppressant that works by acting on neurotransmitters in the brain. Meridia increases the amount of serotonin, dopamine and norepinepphrine in the synapses of your brain—which results in a decrease in appetite.
Meridia has potential side effects such as dry mouth, constipation, high blood pressure.


This is probably one of the most popular FX diet pills on the market but is only prescribed for short term as they lose there efficiency with long term use.

Modafinil (Modalert)

This medication was originally prescribed for those suffering from shift work sleep disorder (narcolepsy) enabling shift workers to stay awake during the night. It has also been used in the military when it has been a requirement for airmen to stay awake for long periods of time whilst on missions but allowing them to be alert and function to there optimum. However, it was found that whilst taking the drug it had a side effect of weight loss.

Below is an article from Wikapedia:

Studies on modafinil (even those on healthy weight individuals) indicate that it has an appetite reducing/weight loss effect. All studies on modafinil in the Medline database that are for one month or longer which report weight changes find that modafinil users experience weight loss compared to placebo. In 2008, one small-scale study on individuals performing simulated shift work quantified the effect as a 18% decrease in total caloric intake on 200 mg/day, and a 38% decrease on 400 mg/day.

In experimental studies, the appetite reducing effect of modafinil appears to be similar to that of amphetamines, but, unlike amphetamines, the dose of modafinil that is effective at decreasing food intake does not significantly increase heart rate. Also, an article published in the Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, presented the case of a 280 pound patient (BMI=35.52) who lost 40 pounds over the course of a year on Modafinil (to 30.44 BMI). After three years, his weight stabilized at a 50 pound weight loss (29.59 BMI). The authors conclude that placebo controlled studies should be conducted on using Modafinil as a weight loss agent.


Mar 2, 2013

Age Related Weight Gain

The two most common factors to excess weight are consuming to much food (over eating) and a sedentary lifestyle (not active enough).
Now of course, the first thing we are told by the professionals in the multi billion dollar world of weight loss is all we need to do is 'decrease' our food intake and 'increase' our mobility and for those who are on the constant treadmill of trying to lose those few extra pounds OR trying to lose a monumental amount of excess weight this is not what we WANT to hear!
The majority of well seasoned dieters know exactly what they need to do. They have read every book. Followed every diet plan (old and new). Enrolled in numerous gym memberships. Bought endless pieces of equipment, all with the intent of succeeding 'this time'.
So why is it that even though we 'despise' how we feel, hate our reflection in the mirror, feel repulsed when we eat 'another' family sized bag of Milky Ways we cannot STOP!
The main issue here is that food is 'addictive' and we have to feed this addiction on a regular basis everyday so as to survive and I think this is a major issue that is just pushed aside and completely overlooked.

So why is it that the weight loss industry continues to grow even when the economic climate is on a down hill slope?

Because they fail to focus on the main issue which is addiction!  They continue to remind us as to what 'we' need to be doing which is 'eat less' and 'move more'and by failing to cure the real problem (food addiction) they continually have us returning for more and more help.
How many of you out there 'eat less' for 5 days a week then binge at the weekends?
How many of you out there 'move more' just so as you can 'eat more'?
Sound familiar!
I spent years, along with my sister running and owning a 'Diet & Fitness' club. We had over 1200 members who would come to our classes on a weekly basis. This was a combination of a one hour weight loss discussion group with a one on one weigh in followed by an hour of aerobic exercise. We had the privilege of meeting and sharing the lives of some of the most courageous women who were all struggling to not only 'lose' weight but also trying to keep the weight 'off'.
We realized over time that they 'all' had two things in common. 
1: They all truly 'desired' to lose weight. 
2: This was 'not' there first attempt.
So why was it after the first few weeks and sometimes months of commitment, eagerness and determination did so many of them stop losing or slowly start gaining? The easy option would of been for my sister and I to blame this on a lack of commitment on there behalf and just wait for the next 'new' members to enroll but being committed to these ladies of which we had become bonded with, we were not willing to accept this! Delving deeper and asking some pertinent questions we realized that there was a third factor in a high percentage of them and that was they had an 'addiction' to food!   

Can age have anything to do with excess pounds?

There is a lot of controversy in regards to this question. Some say that metabolism does slow down with age whereas others claim that an increase in weight is more due to the fact that with age we naturally slow down which decreases our ability to burn calories efficiently whilst still eating the same volume.
Cortisol definitely plays a big part in middle age weight gain. High cortisol is mainly due to stress and as we all know stress can be very difficult to control.
I believe that hormone imbalance plays the biggest part in middle-age weight gain and is often a symptom of your body simply being out of balance, not necessarily a lack of willpower or exercise. Symptoms of insulin resistance and adrenal fatigue due to lifestyle may have been developing over a period of time, but it is only after estrogen levels dip (for menopausal women) or fluctuate (for perimenopausal women) that they become noticeable. The seemingly “new” symptoms are a result of the link between insulin, metabolism, and body fat. Over time a low fat, high carbohydrate diet can lead to insulin resistance which causes the body to convert calories into fat, even on a diet. I personally choose to follow a low carb diet and have found that I can control my weight extremely well without to much effort. 
However, rather than using this as an 'excuse' we need to empower ourselves with this knowledge and use it to our benefit.

So is there a foolproof solution to loosing weight and keeping it off?

Unless we can sit in a room minus the temptations of alluring TV food commercials, have a complete shut down of fast food facilities, stop the production of cakes, cookies, ice cream and candy and have the return of food rationing then the answer is NO!

So what can we do?

We can stop believing that there will ever be a 'miracle' cure.
We can stop 'blaming' ourselves for being over weight....This falls into the categories of: I'm lazy....I'm greedy....I'm a failure.
Start to 'believe' in yourself and the power of 'will' and never succumb to the belief that you will 'never' lose the extra pounds (never say never)!
Repeat to yourself over and over again throughout the day that you 'are' at your ideal weight...believe it enough and it 'will' become your reality!
Commit to doing 'the best you can do'.

Over the next week I will be covering things that I have personally found to 'work' which will enable you to overcome or at least help with food addiction such as things you can do and supplements you can take.
Of course we are all very different and what works for one may not for another. However, having had the privilege of working with those who suffer with weight issues and/or food addictions I realize that there is one thing that everyone has in common and that is the need to have someone who will listen and understand......and hopefully I can fill that void.
Please feel free to leave your comments or questions below.