HEALTHY LIFESTYLE NEWS October, 2014 Issue #107


  • Promotion of the Month
  • Healthy Quote for This Issue
  • No Finger Foods
  • The 10 Commandments of Family Harmony
  • Look at Things As They Can Be
  • Healthy Recipe: Lemon Soup with Garbanzo Beans
  • A Touch of Humor: Medical Records


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“Give a man health and a course to steer, and he’ll never stop to trouble about whether he’s happy or not.” — George Bernard Shaw

By Caryl Ehrlich

If you’re really convinced that you’re hungry, it’s time to eat. This means food on a plate to be eaten with utensils (knife, fork, spoon, chopsticks), not fingers. What a radical thought.

When I was losing weight, a friend called me at work: “Did you have lunch?” Franklin asked.

“No. I just grabbed a hot dog on the corner,” I said.

To me, the words just, grabbed, and on the corner” meant it didn’t count because, a) it was only a hot dog, a small amount of food, b) I could hold it in my hands, so it was too insignificant to count, and, c) it was eaten on the corner with fresh air and sunshine. How could it be bad?

I thought that eating food sold on a street corner wasn’t really a meal. It was . . . well, that’s the point. It didn’t fit any category. So I ended up having a second lunch with my friend.

Another friend and I were walking down First Avenue in Manhattan around 5 p.m. as Paula spied Ray’s Pizza. She said: “Let’s have a slice.” Knowing it was a visual stimulus that had pushed her salivating button, I asked: “Are you hungry?”

“Oh yes,” she replied. “I’m starving.”

“Okay” I said. “Then let’s have a slice of pizza which we can eat with a knife and fork, and order a salad, too. It’ll be dinner.”

I’m not that hungry,” she said. What she really wanted was to have a slice of pizza and eat dinner, too.

How frequently do you eat finger food and think it didn’t somehow count?

When I talk about putting food on a plate and eating it with a knife and fork, I mean committing to the structure of a meal.

If you eat slowly and thoughtfully, cutting, spearing, chewing, sipping, and swallowing, you are present at mealtime. You experience the feelings of satiation and enjoyment. The meal registers. Then, an hour or two later, if you’re thinking of eating again because you see or smell something tempting, you know you couldn’t possibly be hungry. You just had this terrific breakfast, lunch, or dinner two hours ago. You remember it.

When eating finger foods, the reverse happens. Even a few minutes after consuming a finger food you think: “I can eat again because I didn’t really eat. I only had a bagel chip, some black coffee, one rice cake, a low-fat pretzel, and a carrot stick. It was nothing. It doesn’t really count towards my daily food consumption because it was so small, or so low in calories, or so insignificant. It couldn’t possibly count.”

By rushing through the eating experience, by shoving food into your mouth, by not savoring your food, you numbly fill up your body, without satisfying it.

One cracker may contain only 11 calories. That’s not the point. The question is:  How many crackers are in the box and how many boxes have you knocked off already and it’s only Tuesday in the middle of February, May, September, or whenever?

An apple a day becomes bushels at the end of the year. Do you eat bread so often you could count it in loaves? How much of your food enters your mouth without your seeing it so you think none of it counts? It all adds up.

How often do you mindlessly put your fingers into a box, bag, or basket of something and put the contents into your mouth without thinking about it? Do you wonder every morning why the scale remains where it was the day before, or, more depressingly, goes up?

Are sandwiches, bagels, muffins, and hors d’oeuvres at parties a part of your life? Is a bag of popcorn your appetizer? Are nachos a main course? How many chicken wings make a meal? Hard to count. Hard to know.

Now think: Are you hungry enough to commit to a real meal with food on a plate to be eaten with a knife and fork? Or are you not that hungry?

Author Profile: This article is an excerpt from the book Conquer Your Food Addiction published by Simon and Schuster. Caryl Ehrlich, the author, also teaches The Caryl Ehrlich Program, a one-on-one behavioral approach to weight loss in New York City. Visit her at to know more about weight loss and keep it off without diet, deprivation, props, or pills.

By Mark Sichel, LCSW

Family feuds can cause depression, anxiety, sleeplessness, loss of  appetite, sadness, confusion, and rage.  No one wants to live like  that!  Here are some simple rules for turning family feuds into  family fun.  Try following some of the Ten Commandments of Family  Harmony to find some familial relief.

  1. THOU SHALT ZIP IT. Learn to think before you speak.  Bite your tongue before that  provocative remark comes out of your mouth and you get embroiled in a  huge fight.
  2. THOU SHALT CLEAN THY SPLEEN.   Write a hateful, nasty letter to your family, telling them all your  resentments and rages.  Drop the letter into your personal “dead  letter box”; and move on with a smile on your face.  🙂
  3. THOU SHALT LISTEN.  THOU SHALT NOT DISPUTE.   Hey, words are only words.  Sometimes people vent frustration in  inappropriate ways by going on wild diatribes.  Don’t get sucked down  to their level.  When your Mom blows her top and starts howling about  the time you came home late when you were nineteen and how you never  come to see her any more and how Mrs. Johnson’s daughter is SUCH a  better daughter than you… you can hear her out and simply say, “I’m  sorry you feel that way.”  When your mom cools off, she will probably  feel bad, but you won’t have to.  Avoiding that tit-for-tat argument  kept you from having to spend a week in the “burn center.”
  4. THOU SHALT REMEMBER: GOOD FENCES MAKE FOR GOOD FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS.   Create boundaries, set limits.  You know how much contact you can  take and how much will ignite your internal nuclear bomb.
  5. THOU SHALT REMEMBER OCCASIONS AND EVENTS.   It doesn’t cost much to remember birthdays, anniversaries, and the  Christmas holidays.  Whatever the occasion, a card makes people feel  remembered, and when people feel remembered, they feel loved and  hence, another feud is avoided.
  6. THOU SHALT NOT OVERREACT, EVER.   When family members feel neglected, they often will present a  scenario that invites your overreaction.  Invites?  Heck, BEGS for  it!  But remember — overreactions can cause all-out wars.  Do not do  it!
  7. THOU SHALT GIVE IN.  If you want to win the war (or in our case, avoid the war all  together); sometimes it’s strategically advantageous to lose the  battle.  Assess a family situation carefully, strategize, and weigh  your gains and loses in any given situation.  For example, if your  aging mom needs a weekly phone call to avoid starting a fight with  you, why not give it to her?  Is the inconvenience of the call really  weightier than the inconvenience of a brawl?  Practice artful dodging  if necessary, call when you know she won’t be there, and leave a  message telling her you love her and miss her.  A little can go a  long way.
  8. THOU SHALT LET BREVITY AND PAUCITY BE THY MOTTO.   In volatile families, keeping contact limited and utilizing a cordial  and polite silence to avoid fights, can often extinguish the flames  of conflict.  Again, artful dodging is a useful tool.  If your Dad  calls and you can tell he’s looking for trouble: “Got to go Dad, the  Pastor’s at the door for his annual visit.  Speak to you later!”
  9. THOU SHALT CHANT: “WHAT YOU SEE IS WHAT YOU GET.”  Do not ever try to change your relatives.  Remember, people can  change themselves, but we cannot force another to change.  Accept  your family for who they are, whether you like them or not: trying to  change another causes battles, poor self-esteem (because you’re  trying to do something that can’t be done and are doomed to failure),  and depression.
  10. THOU SHALT STAY IN THE DRIVER’S SEAT.   Take control of potentially volatile family situations and take  charge of managing them.  For example, if you come from an alcoholic  family and you know that going out to dinner means that cocktail hour  is the main course and family flambé is the dessert, arrange  breakfast meetings where drinking won’t occur.

© Copyright 2014 Mark Sichel

Author Profile: Mark Sichel is a psychotherapist, consultant, and speaker on a broad range of issues related to family, mental health, and interpersonal problems.  He is the editor and principal author of the award winning self-help website,  For a more detailed guide to overcoming the panic brought on by dysfunctional family experiences, read Mark Sichel’s new book, Healing From Family Rifts : Ten Steps to Finding Peace After Being Cut Off From a Family. For more information about this book visit the author’s website:

By Mentor Max

Your range of available choices right now is limitless.
The only limits you have are in your mind.
You’ve got it in you to succeed.

Just make up your mind and stick with it.
You weren’t born with any limits on your powers
or any set limits to your capacity.

At any moment, you have more possibilities than you can act upon.
Just imagine your possibilities and your vision expands.
Capture your dreams in your mind, and your life becomes full.
Reach out and touch the limits of your being with your mind.

Be thankful of life
because it gives you a chance to live your dreams.



  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1 15-16 oz can garbanzo beans — rinsed and drained
  • 6 garlic cloves — chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbs chopped fresh mint


  1. Combine broth, beans, garlic, turmeric and cumin in large saucepan, bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.
  2. Whisk eggs and lemon juice until well-blended. Gradually whisk 2 cups soup at a time into egg mixture.
  3. Return to saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until heated through, about 5 minutes. (Do not boil.)
  4. Add cayenne. Season with salt.
  5. Ladle into bowls, sprinkle with mint.


The following quotes were taken from actual medical records as dictated by physicians . . .

  • By the time he was admitted, his rapid heart had stopped, and he was feeling better.
  • Patient has chest pain if she lies on her left side for over a year.
  • On the second day the knee was better and on the third day it had completely disappeared.
  • She has had no rigors or shaking chills, but her husband states she was very hot in bed last night.
  • The patient has been depressed ever since she began seeing me in 1983.
  • The patient is tearful and crying constantly. She also appears to be depressed.
  • Discharge status: Alive but without permission.
  • Healthy appearing decrepit 69 year-old male, mentally alert but forgetful.
  • The patient refused an autopsy.
  • The patient has no past history of suicides.
  • The patient expired on the floor uneventfully.
  • Patient has left his white blood cells at another hospital.
  • The patient’s past medical history has been remarkably insignificant with only a 40 pound weight gain in the past three days.
  • She slipped on the ice and apparently her legs went in separate directions in early December.
  • The patient had waffles for breakfast and anorexia for lunch.
  • The patient was in his usual state of good health until his airplane ran out of gas and crashed.
  • Since she can’t get pregnant with her husband, I thought you would like to work her up.
  • She is numb from her toes down.
  • The skin was moist and dry.
  • Occasional, constant, infrequent headaches.
  • Coming from Detroit, this man has no children.
  • Patient was alert and unresponsive.
  • When she fainted, her eyes rolled around the room.

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