Thursday, February 27, 2014

That's my final answer (on herbaLIES post)

This will be my end all of comments. Quite frankly I'm exhausted of repeating myself and I'm not going to get into petty arguments over the Internet; I have far too much life to enjoy. So here's my reply each of the various remarks...

Most of the negative replies imply you didn't fully read or understand what I meant. Perhaps you got caught up one part you wanted to argue, thus not actually 'hearing' all of what I had to say. So, please feel free to re-read it with an open mind and see if that helps. A few of you have said it's not what I said, it's how I said it type thing. Well, I do admit that I have a snarky comical flare to my writing. I'm truly a very kind person, but my sense of humor is sarcastic. I wasn't outright calling anyone who is a part of this company stupid, though some of you interpreted it that way, and for that I'm sorry. Most are actually just unaware, I was simply trying to make you aware.

Many of you want citations  in order to give me any credibility. I did disclaim that I don't hold a degree or license in the fields of medicine, nutrition, and such. I never claimed to be any of those things, so erase your remarks about that. When I was doing my research on the subject, it wasn't an experiment. I didn't go gather intel for the purpose of "bashing" them. At one point, I thought it sounded great, but I am someone who investigates a little deeper so that I have a full understanding of something before hopping on board. Yes, I admit it; the stuff sounded wonderful and I've even tasted some samples; undeniably delicious. However, my gut instinct told me to dig deeper. So I asked my doctor about it, and was given the exact advice I've given here; eat right and exercise, these products may quicken that process but they're not doing me favors and explained the harm in these things. I also talked to my child's pediatrician, as I wanted to know what affects taking ANY supplements could have while breastfeeding, I was also discouraged to use the products there. I talked to personal friends and acquaintances that are registered and licensed nutritionists, dietitians, personal trainers, doctors of sports medicine, sports trainers for professional athetes; and came to the consensus that this stuff isn't good. So to cite them? I can't, or won't. It's not information I got from a book or website that I could easily link you to, though there are beyond several that back me up. I also refuse to provide their names, as you don't need to know my personal healthcare or friends, I also won't put them up for the same bitter backlash that I've been given. So to get my point across, I started my research on it, while interested in it. Once I educated myself on it is when I decided against it.

No, I'm not a scientist and didn't major in it. I do, however, know how to read a nutrition label and figure out what each things is. There are many current writings that express how Herbalife can't prove their scientific back up. I'm not fully educated on the subject, so I won't delve into it. Just don't ask me for mine, when the company you're defending can't prove theirs.

For those of you who have an understanding of business, marketing, and finance and seem to think I don't. I'm more educated on the subjects than you know, but I'm not going to get into a (pardon me) pissing contest over experience, assets, finances and the like. Your arguments are that the government approves the company, that the government shuts things down if they are illegal and monitors these things closely, that the company is approved not only in the US, but many other countries, and you say it's not a pyramid because they don't profit off of the recruitees below them. Okay, yes. You are in fact right. I'm well aware that a company of such volume has to be approved, is monitored, and could be shut down if discovered there is illegitimacy. I will contradict with the fact that not everyone gets caught right away; people smart enough to create such a large industry, are smart enough to cover their tracks too. There have been several major businesses who do later crumble when exposed. There have been several government officials that have crumbled in the same manner. Not everybody is on the up and up about our world, unfortunately. As for standards from other countries, well, there regulations and laws are different. If you're trying to sell me on the size of the company, it's popularity, and amount of money it makes, my response is... tobacco. (I don't want to get into a heated debate about that either, sorry smokers!) I'm just saying there's a prime example of a trillion dollar industry that is (unfortunately) very popular AND legal, yet horrible for you with proof it is unhealthy and can kill you, it is still allowed. So drop the "it's approved thing." A lot of awful things are.

My reason for calling it a pyramid scheme comes from the exact descriptions I was given BY YOUR OWN PERSONNEL. Or life coaches or whatever you call them. The booths are everywhere, I've listened to a few dozen different pitches. All of them explained, in different wording, but equal naivety, that I could make money off of selling the products AND the essential "buy in" from each person I recruit, and so on down the ladder. By some I was told I could also buy my way up, by paying more money to have a higher title. Explain to me what that is then, for the experts. Are these Herbalife "coaches" misleading me? Is the company in fact not a scheme? Perhaps! If that's the case, then several of your people are misguided and giving out false information. Maybe if they provided more training/education or a more thorough "hiring/recruiting/whathaveyou" process they could weed out people who aren't doing the company justice. It seems they'll allow anyone to do their work though. So you pick Herbalife. Are you a scam or do you allow anyone and everyone to sell for you thus giving out inconsistent and false information? Either way, it's not right and something should be done. You can follow the Ackman case if you want more legal verbiage and opinions from a much bigger opinion and case than I. And to clarify, no I'm not "in his camp". I became aware of his issue with the company long after I had established my own.

Which brings me to the point of my issue with it. Many of you are saying I must have had bad results with it or failed at some other MLM deal. I haven't had either, seeing as I've educated myself before diving into anything in life. So, no, besides the samples of "blueberry muffin smoothie" and "burn a hundred calorie tea" I was offered during sales pitches, I have not used the products. I've also never joined, invested in, etc to any company and failed. Anything I've put my time and money into has been very rewarding. None of which, were those types of business. Then there are you with the opposite insult, saying I'm knocking it without trying it. Yes, yes I am. I never said it didn't work, if you actually read it though, I agreed it can help with desired goals. I just added that it wasn't a healthy way to go about it. I can tell you that doing heroine is bad without having done it myself, and so on.

For those of you who've said that you do or they do encourage healthy eating and exercise, well good for those who do. I've been told, again, by your own kind, that by taking these products, I don't need to lift a finger, and I'll quote "My dad works a 9-5, and doesn't workout at all. He drinks this tea that burns a hundred calories by the glass all day at his office job, and he's lost seventeen pounds in two weeks!" I think we can all agree that is a comment to vomit over. This HL distributor even said the tea is the only product his dad uses, he doesn't even do the shakes, meals, etc. So tell me HL experts? Can your tea alone, in fact do this? If so, please provide your scientific backing, be sure to legitimately cite it, as you've all requested of me. Oh, right. So it doesn't  in fact work like that? Then again, YOUR OWN PEOPLE, are misleading, and in this case straight lying with their "personal testimony" to the public about your products. You pick herbalife, you pick. Other HLs (Herbalifers for short now, k?) have also said they've been able to skip the gym way more just by using the products. Again, no encouragement to exercise. I admit, I do know a couple HLs that are also gym rats, but were long before HL and used different supplements then. For the majority though, I'm told the products can take the place of exercise. I have not seen the promotion for it. Also, saying it promotes health eating brings me back to exactly what I blogged, which I'm not going to explain again, but end with eat a balanced diet of real foods; proteins from fish, chicken, meat, nuts, quinoa, Greek yoghurt. Eat complex carbs; steel cut oats and sweet potatoes. Eat fruits and veggies for other carbs and healthy forms of sugar. Get plenty of essential good fats from things like salmon, walnuts, and avocados. You can supply yourself with all of the nutrients it takes to have a healthy fit body without every touching a chemical or supplement products. You're encouraging the product with the food, not saying food can do it alone, which it can. So even if you're providing a dish full of kale and salmon, but you're also telling them they need to take such and such with it. When in fact, they don't. My scientific backing of that is that I lost 53lbs, traded plenty of body fat for muscle, in six months without any of those products.

For those who are just writing down right insulting and moronic statements, well you're not worth my time. Just know you look void of any intelligence and ability to maturely be part of an intellectual debate. I doubt this paragraph even made sense to you.

For those inquiring about other brands or companies, I can't speak on behalf of any of those, because I haven't educated myself on them, yet. With anything, I'd say consult your doctor before taking it. If it feels all to familiarly set up like this brand, well... you go with your gut. Remember to check ingredients, know what they really mean, and decide if that's something you want in your body.

For all of the POSITIVE feedback, THANK YOU! I appreciate the support from all of you. Whether you agreed, and know a ton about the topic or even if you knew nothing, but now understand and agree with me. I appreciate all of the encouragement and support so much! For all of those who've commented and especially all of the messages asking for my help with diet and exercise, thank you! It means a lot that you want my help and I take it as a huge compliment. I want to individually and whole heartedly respond to each of you and your needs, and I promise I will. I just ask you have patience with me, as I want my responses to be genuine and helpful to YOU, and not just some thrown together generic response. As the mama of a toddler and our busy lifestyle, my hands are often very full. So I just ask for patience as I take the time to get back to you, but I promise I will. In the interim, continue to educate yourself on your health and fitness, and do your best! Props to all for making real healthy choices for their body.

The reason I posted this was to help. Regardless, of what you think my intentions were, I'm trying to provide truth and helpful advice to those who will listen. I know that no matter what I say, there's always going to be someone that disagrees, and I'm fine with that. I think I've made it clear I'm not afraid to stand my ground and speak my mind. However, this post was not intended to anger or hurt anyone, though I did expect the backlash from some. My true intentions were to help. Throughout the process of me getting my body into fit and healthy shape after having my daughter, I've sparked interest in a lot of people. I'd post healthy recipes or progress photos of myself, motivational quotes, and gym related pictures. The responses were overwhelmingly kind. So many told me how I inspire and motivate them to be their best self. That brings me so much joy! Inquiries upon inquires of what I did to achieve what I have, flooded in, and I have personally responded with advice to all of them, all thanking me and most telling me how great it is working for them. Not everyone committed themselves, but the ones that have are seeing results. This came simply from my advice and encouragement. Which is why I wrote this blog post. For those same people who've looked up to my fitness and health, I wanted them to be aware and not take this route. I made no personal gain, other than knowing I'm helping others to achieve a healthy body the right away and the satisfaction that is helping others. That's how I can "back up" my intentions. I wasn't paid to write this, I don't work for a competitor and wasn't trying to put down one to make something else look better, I am obviously not compensated for promoting real food and exercise; seeing as I am not offering personal training or meal plans for a price. The natural food I refer to comes from the Earth, while God supports me, He didn't send me a paycheck for saying "Eat your veggies!" (ps. Let's not have any religious comments.) So again, I had true intentions to help those who've been following me. I figured that those who I personally know and had interest would read it and maybe share with some of their circles. I never anticipated that it would be seen globally, with over 325,000 views. I'm sure glad it has though, because I've spread awareness much further than I had even hoped.

Despite the backlash, I'm still glad I posted this. I'm proud of what it's accomplishing and of myself for solidly standing my ground.

So this is my final retort, as I believe it has covered all of the replies. Any positive people, feel free to continue, the rest will be ignored. You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink. So if you don't like, believe, support what I've said; that's fine. You are just as entitled to live your life freely, as am I. I am not forcing you to read my blog, nor am I forcing you to make or not make any other choices in your life. So go on with yours, but for those who've opinions I've changed and helped, this is why I wrote this. For you.

To all, make it a great day!(:

Friday, February 21, 2014


I've decided not to sugarcoat things, as we all know, I try to avoid sugar.
So, here we go...
"Our Mission is to change people’s lives by providing the best business opportunity in direct selling and the best nutrition and weight management products in the world."
Uh, false.
Raise your hand if you know what a pyramid scheme is? Okay well those of you have your hands up, props to you for physically responding to a blog. Those of you who didn't, because you don't know, I certainly hope you're not part of one, because chances are you're at the bottom. Bottom of what you ask? A mountain of twenty-somethings [or so it seems to be] who've hopped on the Herbalife train without the slightest REAL clue as to where the tracks are taking them. Sure, you may have sat through some really convincing fancy schmancy seminar about how amazing these products are, but even better how YOU [I'm pointing at you Uncle Sam style] can benefit financially from it. More than likely, you saw a bunch of your friends post about it on Facebook, and now we have a bunch of I-think-I'm-a-nutritionists. #dontactuallyknowwhatyouretalkingabout "OMG! I'm going to get skinny and rich, so totes perf!" NOT.
 By definition, a pyramid scheme is "a form of investment (illegal in US & elsewhere) in which each paying participant recruits two further participants, with returns being given to early participants using money contributed by later ones." also sometimes covered up as "multi-level
marketing". So some guy with a savvy sales pitch, and probably bro-tastic hair and big biceps gave you a spiel about these "awesome tasting shakes that rock, and this tea that burns a hundred calories just by drinking it [EXCUSE ME WHILE I VOMIT ON THAT BS!], and yeah, man you can sell this stuff to all of your equally gullible friends, and if you can get them to join the cult, you can make money off of that too. Herbalife for the win, bro!"
Well, let me break down the ugly truth for you...
As for the financial part of it, for those who were looking to make a buck. This is where the tippy top part of the pyramid is, those are the ones who can make a lucrative "job" selling 'poison' recruiting others out of it. There are a select few that have the sales techniques to get a bunch of naïve people to join, however, this is not the case for most. Most of you stay at the bottom of the pyramid, maybe occasionally recruiting others, but certainly not enough to make a life off of, or even support your own product purchases. At least not for as long as you'd need to take them for them to keep working. Which is forever, by the way, or at least until the crap in them negatively affects you. Ah yes, because when you stop taking these products, that lost weight comes hurdling back to attach itself to you.
So there you are, with all of your weight back, all of your money gone, and the lack of sense on how to actually properly achieve a healthy body. You've
relied on supplements and chemicals to keep the weight off, which has in turn left you for lack of a better term actually I like this term screwed. You haven't the slightest idea how to eat and exercise to obtain your dream body, you've been dependent on an aid the entire time. Your metabolism has in fact, lost all of it's marbles, and doesn't know how to react to eating normally anymore, and it will burn things at a much slower rate than it should. In fact, because it's been deprived for the duration of the weight loss program, when it finally does get the proper amount of food, it's afraid it may not get it again, and actually goes into starvation mode, storing things as fat for later, instead of burning it off and using it as fuel, like a stable metabolism should. Dear Grammar Gosh that was a lot of commas for one sentence. Oops.

Now, before you attack back with how it's actually worked on you or someone you know, save it. I know that it can in fact, cause weight loss. Great. So can anorexia. ***I'm not mocking eating disorders, and certainly not encouraging them, I'm simply giving an example that there are plenty of ways to lose weight, though most of them are not healthy! There are many people who have shed pounds by using the weight loss program, but at a price, and I'm not just talking about the cost of the products. I'm referring to the damage they've caused their bodies, most might not even be aware. However, there are quite a few that noticed some of the more obvious side effects, such as headache, weakness, faintness/dizziness, extreme cramping, bloating, nausea, and diarrhea. So, where do I sign up? Those are just the apparent issues, but do you know what you've actually been consuming, and more importantly what that does to your body? 
Let's take a looksie at the ingredients for a protein shake, shall we?
Numero Uno: soy protein isolate. That's genetically modified soy (USDA estimates that over 94% of soy in America is genetically modified). It's not healthy when highly processed into this crap. Feel free to educate yourself on the negativity that is genetically modified soy. SO what's next? Oooh yay, some tasty monoglycerides and diglycerides, also known as TRANS FATS. Some more overly-processed toxins and synthetic crap tossed in here and there. Then there's some sucralose, which is an artificial sweetener made by replacing hydrogen-oxygen groups on the sugar molecule with chlorine atoms, leaving you with a product as sweet as sugar, but awful for you but without the sugar's calories. Mmm, chlorine, my favorite. There's a reason why you're not supposed to swallow pool water. So there's your "super duper" shake that's terrible for you, but hey, at least it tastes like banana pudding. I'm sure banana pudding places high on the last meal of death row requests.
So, you've had your shakes. What can you have on your way too low-calorie meal for the day? How about the highly processed "low-fat" foods they recommend, or even their brand name foods you can purchase? Don't mind that they're full of hydrogenated soy, autolyzed yeast extract [aka MSG], canola and cottonseed oils, corn syrup, wheat protein, margarine, and artificial flavors. Oh, that's all okay though, because they also suggest you eat lots of fruits and veggies with it, yeah, because that makes up for it. The foods they suggest are void of any nutrients, and replaced with absolute garbage. If you don't know what any of the underlined or bold things written here are, I highly suggest researching them, you won't want to consume them afterward. Herbalife likes to use different terminology to list their ingredients. Basically, different name, same killer. You know how criminals sometimes have different aliases to cover their dirty tracks? EXACTLY.
So what do I recommend then? Oh you know, just good ole fashion clean eating. Meaning eating a nutrient rich diet from real and natural foods, organic and locally grown if you can. Which you can afford if you quit wasting money on crap products. EAT REAL FOOD AND EXERCISE, that's what a healthy lifestyle is. Cut out the alcohol, get good sleep, discover world peace, you know the drill. You've heard it time and time again, I've preached it time and time again, yet people still sit with a puzzled look on their face. They just can't seem to fathom that eating real, healthy food and good ole fashion exercise is going to help their body. It does, I PROMISE. I lost the fifty-three pounds I gained while pregnant by the time Brooklynn was six months old. I didn't take any magical pills, shakes, or teas. I didn't do any weird crash diets or extreme low calorie fads. I didn't develop an eating disorder or use drugs. I didn't have any surgeries of any kind, or wear plastic wraps. I didn't sprinkle any magical pixie dust and do the hokeypokey while balancing a cup of fat-burning tea on my head. You know what I did do? I ate right, I exercised, I won't lie; I don't get adequate sleep, but that's motherhood, I don't drink, but the occasional wine or celebratory champagne, I don't smoke/do drugs. I live a healthy lifestyle.
You know what else? I've never felt better! Sure, there were plenty of melt downs along the way, where I felt insecure and wanted to resort to some of the said above not realistic methods, but I didn't. I took pride in doing things the right way, the way that was going to be best for me now AND in the long run. I take comfort in knowing we're raising our daughter to live a healthy lifestyle too. I won't even start on the fact that they make products for children, it boils my blood too high, and if you're someone who subjects your kids to it; SHAME ON YOU! Back to a positive note though, don't fall for the herbaLIES or any other bullsh scam out there, do things the tried and true way, I promise you'll thank yourself!
I'm sure the heat is coming. I know this post probably pissed the hell out of a lot of people. Truth often does. I can handle it, because I know I'm right. If you choose to stick to your unhealthy guns, so be it. However, I hope this post instead sheds light on the issue, and may change some of your opinions and habits.
Now, I'm off to enjoy some sweet potato with almond butter and then hit the gym for some serious HIIT [high intensity interval training] murder.(:
My proof
***I am not a doctor, nurse, dietician, nutritionist, or health professional of any kind. Though, I have consulted many who do hold those titles to educate myself on these things.***

***I was also not endorsed or compensated in any way to write this, it was my own opinion and desire to post.***

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

our day at the park.

This past Sunday was the first day of gorgeous weather, after what seems to have been a long and freezing winter. So we seized the opportunity to take Brooklynn to the park. It was her first time on the slide and swings, she had an absolute blast! I think Travis and I had even more fun just watching in awe at the pure joy exuding from her. There's nothing quite like the squeals of happiness from your babe and watching their fascination as they take in new surroundings. With the sweet breezes blowing through our hair and sunshine warming our skin, we breathed in the fresh air of the upcoming spring and enjoyed our beautiful day at the park.(:

The slide was kind of take it or leave it to her, probably wasn't much of a ride seeing as our legs were the length of it. She'll grown into it soon enough. The swings though, oh the wonderful swings!

"This is so much fun Daddy!"
Perhaps I'm biased, but I can't look at these without smiling ear to ear!(:

peek-a-boo belly button.(: 
"Woooooah wooooooah wooooah!" 

Not sure where this tongue thing came from, but I think it means she's having a blast!(:

"Bye bye park, be back soon!"<3

Saturday, February 15, 2014

hearts on hearts on hearts<3

Some bits of love from our lovely Valentine's Day...

This mama was feeling creative and loving, so naturally I made festive breakfast for Travis and Brooklynn.

Travis got a hearty breakfast of heart-shaped eggs in toast with heart toast cutouts for yolk dipping and funky-shaped heart-shaped bacon. 

He followed it up with lots of smooches, so I'd say he got the message "I <3 you!"

Brooklynn got heart-shaped pancakes  drizzled in almond butter. (healthy recipe here, just cook batter like pancakes instead of cookies.) 

Clearly, she was a fan.(: 

She also loved her Valentine's presents...
"Happy Valentine's, Curious George." and an elovephant, or that's what I'm calling it anyway. 

Then I had way too much fun playing with Cupid...
I mean, does it get any cuter?!(:

Travis made us a fantastic dinner of Quinoa pasta with a coconut milk and truffle sauce, mushrooms, asparagus, shrimp, and parmesan. I accidentally ate the kale, Brussels, and green apple salad before photographing it. oops. 
I'm such a lucky girl to have such a talented chef for a hubby.(: 

We hope your day was filled with love and heart-shaped things, and of course as we believe; love love love every day of the year.<333

Friday, February 7, 2014

Brookie's Cookies!

You know what goes great with a snow day? 
 COOKIES! Warm, fresh out-of-the-oven, cookies.

She wasn't very amused, prefers the beach like her Mama.(;

It's a shivery day, and this Mama was craving warmth and sweets, so I decided to make cookies. Well, my little Brooklynn scarfs down everything I eat likes me to share my food with her. Being a clean eater myself, I have a very healthy recipe for cookies, so that I can indulge without the guilt. Don't you worry, I'll share the recipe momentarily.(: However, I use protein powder in mine, and that certainly isn't an ingredient I'm going to give my thirteen month old. So I got experimental and hopeful, and created the easiest, SUPER HEALTHY, and yummy cookies for Brooklynn. I call them Brookie's Cookies... Because I mean, who doesn't love to rhyme? She LOVES them, and I love knowing I'm filling her bitty growing body with nutrients and not junk. You can check out my post all about raising baby healthy here.

The house filled with that cozy and oh so familiar smell, and Brooklynn and I went back and forth from admiring the "pit-eee" (pretty) snowflakes fall outside the window to peering in through the oven glass to see if our "mmm" (yummies) were ready yet. Finally, after that ever so long "cooling period", our cookies were done. We sat together, just me and my baby girl, and shared a plate of cookies and of course, a big glass of almond milk. Such a simple thing, yet so sweet.

I hope that not only will you take away two awesome recipes from today, but remember to take time to just enjoy the little moments with your little ones, or any loved one for that matter. Appreciate the simplicity, for these little moments are the ones to cherish. Not only did I fill my desire for warmth and craving for sweets, I was also filled with the warmth of Brooklynn's love and sweet cuddles.(:<3

Brookie's Cookies:
-1 cup old fashioned oats (NOT instant/flavored crap)
-1 cup puréed pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie filling, but actual pumpkin.) 
-1 cup cooked sweet potato (We always have some cooked and mashed on hand, but you may need to allow extra time if you're baking yours first.) 
-1 tbsp. almond butter (the ONLY ingredient in ours is almonds.) 
-1 dash of cinnamon to your liking 
-1 smidge of coconut oil, just to grease the cookie sheet. 

***[Mamas ONLY: Use the same recipe and add a scoop of your favorite protein powder (be creative with flavors!) for the extra bit of oomph you might need! I nibble on them throughout the day to sustain energy and keep my metabolism going between meals.]***

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees 
-Pour all ingredients into whatever mixing device you use when baking that has blades, it will require them to turn oats into flour. I suppose a typical mixer would just give you an 'oatier' texture, but I cant make any guarantees that way. We use a food processor. 
-While it's mixing, grease a cookie sheet with coconut oil. It doesn't take much. 
-Once it's fully mixed (you may need to push down the batter, as it collects to the sides.) plop it out in whatever size portions you'd like onto cookie sheet. 
-Place them in the oven for 13-18 minutes. (Ovens DO vary and I don't want to be blamed for burned cookies, so adjust accordingly.)
-Set out to cool. (They will be soft and moist inside, that's how they're supposed to be; easier for bitty ones to chew/mash.
-PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE be sure they're cooled off enough before your baby bites into one!!!
-Serve with a sippy cup of milk! We use Silk Original Almond Milk. 
-Drizzle a bit of almond butter on top while they're still warm for extra ooey gooey goodness. 
-Enjoy cookies with your kiddo!(:


Here's a picture of the ingredients I used, to keep it  sugar-free, wheat free, and dairy free. These are all REAL ingredients, and don't contain any junk! 

I hope you enjoy them as much as we did! As always, feel free to ask any questions and of course share any baby friendly or healthy Mama recipes!(: