Monthly Archives: October 2009

Flu Shots and Random Thoughts


This Swine Flu, H1N1, has certainly been center stage for a while now.  I keep thinking it doesn’t seem as bad as I feared it was going to be.  We certainly have had students with the H1N1 flu at school…but not nearly as many as we anticipated…although some may say it is because the season has just begun.  I am praying that that is not the case.

I keep an eye on the news… I remember stories told about my great great uncle George who, after being a hot-air balloonist in World War 1, lost the love of his life, Louise,  to the Spanish Flu Epidemic of 1918.  He never recovered from her loss, familial legend says, and he died a taciturn bachelor, Dakota grain farmer.

While I was in junior high, in 1976, my family and I stood in a long line in Loveland, Colorado,  to receive the Swine Flu vaccination for an epic epidemic that never occurred.

I  remember hearing stories of people who were later affected by the vaccine, not by the flu…and I anxiously and silently waited for similar side effects to hit me.  Luckily, my dramatic premonitions, like the expected epidemic, never came to fruition.

I have decided not to get a  vaccination for the H1N1 flu.   There seems to be a lot of unanswered questions about the flu and the vaccine…..so I will do my best to remain healthy by consciously taking care of myself.

There are several simple precautions you can use to proactively help lessen your chances of getting the flu (of any sort) this season:

1) Wash your hands every time you think about it.  Be especially careful to wash before meals, after coming home, after being around others….you get it…just keep washing!  Wash your hands with soap and water after handling money, shopping carts, doorknobs, public bathrooms, public phones, etc.

2) DO NOT touch your eyes, nose, and lips if your hands are not clean.  Viruses can easily enter your system via these openings.  Like I tell my students at school: don’t put that borrowed pencil in your mouth, don’t share your chap stick or soda…. Stay away from people who are visibly sick. Don’t use other people’s pens, and phones.

3) Get lots of rest…really…8 hours is so much better for your immune system than 5-6 hours.

4) Eat health whole foods; get plenty of protein and lots of antioxidants from colorful fruits and vegetables, avoid sugar and excessive caffeine

5) Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day

6) Take a goodWomenVitamins recommends relaxing and smelling the flowers multivitamin and include extra Vitamin C, Zinc, A, D and fish oil (Omega-3) (all known supporters of healthy immune systems)

7) Manage your stress with meditate, relaxation, having fun, and most importantly by listening  to your body.

WomenVitamins recommends relaxing and smelling the flowers
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When Exercise and Diet Fail


Catchy title, eh?

When exercise and diets fail…..but wait…there’s a problem…THEY DON”T FAIL!

This week I was looking for topics to blog about.  seems like every time I turned around…the facts presented themselves that exercise, healthy foods, and vitamins can help with everything from:

  • depression
  • weight loss
  • autism
  • ADD/ADHD
  • diabetes….   the list goes on

    Balancing exercise with healthy food and women vitamins

    Balancing exercise with healthy food and women vitamins

When we exercise and take care of ourselves, we feel good, we create all kinds of natural chemicals and compounds that allow the body to regulate itself in a healthy manner. The manner it was designed to be.

Yet,  for some reason,  we prefer to pretend that our problems can only be cured with pills, prescriptions and other people’s programs.

Somewhere on the path, we have lost the ability or desire to save ourselves…we are not proactive– we are reactive. We would rather place the blame on someone else and forget that we are  solely responsible for ourselves.  We want quick and easy and painless “fixes” …  forgetting that sweat equity, dedication, and investment bring personal rewards returns on so many levels.

Somewhere in the last 40 years we have bought the theory that a pill can fix everything…I remember my grandma’s medicine cabinet….holding toothpaste, deodorant, aspirin, Vick’s vapor-rub, tea tree oil, oil of cloves, oil of peppermint…..and that assortment seemed enough to see her thru 86 years of independent healthy living….no arthritis, no heart issues, no broken bones.

Gram worked all her life, walked and walked, drank gallons of coffee, baked and shared her creations with others, attended church, drove like an Indy 500 racer, and passed of a stroke in her sleep.  I think she would have been baffled by life today…Her mantra was “mind over matter, Kersty.”  She believed you were in charge of your life and you were supposed to do what had to be done; no self pity, no waiting to be saved by others or by pills or by some magic mystical thinking.

Bill Mahr, a favorite comedian of mine has a set that sort of focuses on this same issue:


Women Vitamins: Angelita’s Lap Dance…


Here’s a story for all of you who have a dream and think you need someone else to help you get thereYou Don’t!

I worked for a short while with a woman (I’ll call Angelita Flowers) who had been obese, and who decided to have lap band surgery.  She lost a lot of weight, had several cosmetic surgeries, damn she looks good…..

Then she realized that there was a niche of over-weight people out there, just like the person she had been, who were, desperate for help with their weight issues.  Who was she to step aside from a bunch of people with desperation and cash?

So, long story short, she started a business linking obese women with bariatric doctors.  She skipped around from various clinics and doctors to other clinics and other doctors.  Made a name in the local Houston “obesity” arena, and started several companies for herself along the way.  She is one sharp cookie…a shrewd hustler…

I have to hand it to her, she knows her stuff.

Angelita , came to me and proposed a business to

Thoughts on Vitamins and Womens Health

Such an optimist! Must be the women vitamins!

address some of the nutritional needs of bariatric patients.  She ended up taking me and a friend of mine for an “expensive” ride; a lap dance (if you’ll pardon the pun).

In other words, she teased and tantalized.  We did the work, created a product and when the time came to promote the products, she just ‘got up’ and left us….taking the business, the dream, the cash, and the product..

Long story short= she lied, cheated and stole from us…..  and never looked back...there’s an experience for you…I can hardly believe it happened…until I look at my savings account..that’s my proof of her perfidy  (always wanted to use that word!)

But—Things Angelita taught me  about obesity and bariatric surgery:

Perhaps you didn’t know:
•    When you go thru bariatric surgery, you are pretty much altered for ever….your body is no longer the bio-entity it was prior to surgery
•    It’s expensive financially, emotionally, and mentally
•    It may seem like a “quick fix” but it’s not it’s a life-long choice
•    You will most likely suffer from transfer addictions
•    Food will taste different and your body will react to it in strange ways
•    You can’t hold your alcohol as well if you drink, which you probably shouldn’t anymore
•    You may end up unexpectedly pregnant (if you are female) your fertility runs amok

You can lose a lot of prior medical problems:
•    Heart issues improve
•    Diabetic Issues can sometimes be eliminated
•    Sleep Apnea conditions lessen
•    High Blood Pressure Issues are resolved
•    Risk of premature death  is reduced

You will most likely:
•    Need more surgeries to fix the problems of left over, sagging skin
•    Lose your hair
•    Be unable to efficiently assimilate the vitamins and minerals your body needs
•    Develop teeth issues
•    Have chronic muscle aches and cramps
•    Need protein assistance

So, what is the big picture I learned from Ms Angelita Flowers?

  1. Take care of yourself…before you become over-weight or obese
  2. Exercise, move it, and lose it
  3. Eat sensibly….you can do portion control without the lap band….okay so you don’t dump, get nauseated, throw up, and otherwise revolt, but you can watch what you eat.
  4. Deal with the emotions that trigger over eating….because emotions remain to haunt you with or without bariatric surgery.
  5. Put some stock in yourself.  You are worthy of being taken care of by yourself….SO…take care of yourself!
  6. Invest in exercise activities, good wholesome foods, common sense multi-vitamins supplements, efficient protein shakes supplements….
  7. And then forgive and forget those who have hurt you, caused you pain, given you reasons to doubt… take a deep breath and step away from that old attitude and response.

Live those extra years that a healthy life style and healthy body weight can give you…

Be happy, be healthy, take your WomenVitamins, and be blessed, Kersten