Erba Vita 2-Week Review

While I was wandering Europe over the summer, Alyssa informed me of another product review opportunity I had waiting for me upon my return.  I’m pretty keen on using body cleansing products so when I found out that the company offering the product was Erba Vita, a business that specializes in products with more naturally-occurring ingredients, I was excited to give it a chance

Unfortunately I came down with the plague within a week of my return and had to wait until I was off all my medication before I started putting anything else into my body.

I began taking two capsules a day of the company’s “Weight” pills to ease myself into the transition as they had ingredients like green tea extract in it.  With other ingredients like L-carnintine, cassia nomame, and chitosan, these little capsules were packed full of powders that would help cleanse my system and aide in weight loss.  I did feel a bit healthier over the past two weeks but I feel if my eating behavior was better, I’d probably have more noticeable results.  Of course, I can’t see what has been going on within my body so I shouldn’t only count numbers as results.  I definitely have been more regular, if that fun fact helps explain these supplements better.

Erba Vita also sent over these cool detoxifying bottle tops, appropriately named DETOX,  with fun ingredients like milk thistle extract, burdock extract, and more green tea.  The caps are designed to easily twist onto a bottle of water so it can easily be mixed but my plastic bottle (which made me cheat on my reusable BOBBLE) didn’t fit so I ended up just pouring it into a glass.   The mixture tasted like water with a hint of lime and herbal supplement flavor, as one would expect when packing so many different extracts into one serving.

Now that my body is finally starting to feel ALMOST normal again, I’m going to start taking the recommended four pills a day along with making a point of actually drinking the DETOX drinks as well. Alyssa and I both are going to start getting our acts together today and I’ll be sharing my meal plans later on this week.

 

The American holiday season is quickly drawing near and I know the opportunities to lose weight will draw sparse with every party that I am invited to or every cookie that I will be offered.  If I can start being hardcore now, by the time the sugar season rolls around, perhaps I will be able to resist all those sweet temptations.

Thank you everyone to all your positive wishes regarding my past few posts for my health and education, I love reading the comments and am trying to get better at actually responding!

I hope you all had a lovely Labor Day weekend and if you do happen to be working today, THANK YOU for whatever you happen to be doing to support our country and the way it functions.

Love and lime,

AprilSignatur

10 Day Liver Cleanse and Detox: Metagenics Clear Change, Day Three

Hi Chinners, happy Tuesday! Remember how last month I found out that I had elevated liver enzymes? So basically, there was one liver count test where the high average was supposed to be like 30.. and mine was 120. Yeah, about that. So I really don’t drink, maybe prior to going on Metformin, once a week, a glass of wine or two. I do know that I’m the cheapest date in the world in that it takes me only one glass of wine to get a buzz, and I’m super easily affected by caffeine. All of these things can point to a sensitive liver, which clearly I haz. (HELP ME! MY BLOGGING IS TURNING ME INTO A LOLCAT!)

A delicious detox-approved green salad, with chick peas, avocado, cucumber, tomato and assorted butter lettuce.

A delicious detox-approved green salad, with chick peas, avocado, cucumber, tomato and assorted butter lettuce.

Under my awesome doctor’s orders, we decided to do a liver detox and re-test my liver enzymes after six weeks. The six week mark is fast approaching, so I ordered the Metagenics Clear Change Program – 10 Day. I specifically waited to start the cleanse until after FitBloggin’, because  I didn’t want to have any issues with my stomach while doing things like bouncing around on mini-trampolines or trying out crossfit for the first time. On Saturday, I made a very expensive Whole Foods trip and stocked up on organic pears, apples, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, beets, carrots, rice cakes and organic, unfiltered, unsweetened apple juice. In addition to ingredients you provide yourself, you drink a “medical shake” a few times daily.

The food part of the detox basically involves a vegan, whole foods diet from days one through three with some milk substitutes and rice allowed, and then on day four, you start getting more hardcore with no rice, no milk substitutes and no meat. Days five to seven are what have me shaking in my boots – those are days where I can only eat “Cruciferous vegetables”, aka, the fart-bombs of veggie-land; broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, cabbage and greens. Oh my. Thankfully on those days I can still have some beans and my lovely organic apples and pears, but YIKES. I get HANGRY when I’m hungry, so this should be interesting.

A healthy mixed vegetable stir fry over a tiny bit of brown rice.

A healthy mixed vegetable stir fry over a tiny bit of brown rice.

So far I’ve been feeling okay. Days one through two were easy, though I had to watch it to “remember” I couldn’t eat certain things. Thankfully I love vegetables, so eating like a rabbit isn’t really unpleasant for me. However, today has been a little more dicey, as I started taking the detoxification capsules and shakes, and I’m feeling kind of run down and sluggish. Not to mention I’ve got some interesting stomach things going on, but as my handy little program guide tells me, these types of signals are all just signs that the program is working. Of course the few hardest days happen RIGHT WHEN OUR AIR CONDITIONER BREAKS AND IT’S GOING TO BE 104 DEGREES. Murphy’s law, right? Such is life…

So now that you know what’s up with me and my liver, tell me — have you ever tried a detox or a cleanse? What was it like? Did you experience any amazing after effects?

 

 

 

What has a month of doing Pilates and Yoga twice a week done?

It’s been a little over a month now since school began and I can honestly say that my excitement for school to END is not because of the work load, it’s because I’m so excited to see how my body turns out.

I was super smart and decided to take Pilates and Yoga back to back through my college, knowing that I would be forced to stick with the classes because if I dropped them,  I would lose my financial aide.

So every Monday and Wednesday from noon to two, as I practice feeling my pelvic floor and sun salutations, I think to myself how proud I am for choosing to take these classes.  I started taking yoga a few years ago but would only go at random times so didn’t feel the full benefits from regular practice.  Now that’s it been a month of regular routine, I feel stronger, leaner, and more grounded than ever before.  I notice that my waist, though still fluffified with fat, is getting these cool lines going down the sides of it, as if I have DEFINED ABS. Haha!  I also noticed that my back rolls of fat are basically gone, which I find to be a HUGE accomplishment considering it hasn’t even been that long of classes.  I’m sure doing my hula hoop has helped with that too!

One of the amazing Pilates moves I learned - Click on the photo for more from ultimatepilatesworkouts.com

One of the amazing Pilates moves I learned – Click on the photo for more from ultimatepilatesworkouts.com

Pilates has been making me discover muscles I  never knew I had before.  For example, in class last Wednesday we did these crazy leg moves where we were on our hands and knees and along with the standard up and down leg lifts, we also had to move our legs from side to side.  When we were done with those, we laid upon our mats on the cold and polished floor, eager to rest.  BUT NO!  Instead, our teacher had us bend our knees up and practice lifting our pelvis and thighs off the ground, while still keeping our knees and stomachs on our mats.  Pilates introduces many moves that seem so hard the first time that I try them, but now that we’ve been repeating them, they keep getting easier and easier.

Like Pilates, I have progressed very nicely in my yoga class as well.  I have a goal set to be able to reach my “nose to my toes” and this previous class, for the first time in my adult life, I was able to reach my forehead to the tops of my toes.  I didn’t expect this type of achievement to come so soon so you can imagine how happy I felt after class when I gave it a shot.

Yoga has given me so much confidence in what my body can do.  I feel so proud of myself when I am able to do the harder poses my teacher labels as “level two and level three”.  I love yoga because it has yet to make me feel once that I was simply too fat to achieve the poses.  Plus, between doing the Pilates and yoga, my posture has improved and has made me take note of when I’m slouching more.  My Dad’s days of pulling my shoulders back to teach me to stand-up straight might be coming to an end!

April doing “Half Moon”

I am also very proud to report that since I began again on my weight-loss adventure on January 2nd, I have lost eight pounds.  This week alone provided me with a four pound loss because of the detox I have been doing.  As I write this, it’s the night of Day Four, and I have been going strong!  Every day is easier than the one before and while I still hear the faint voices of the caffeine Gods calling out to me, my determination to complete the week puts ear muffs over me and refuses to respond to their calls.

I look forward to reporting back in another month what TWO months of regular yoga and Pilates has done for my body.  This is probably the best positive change I have ever been able to make for my body and I have a solid belief that my practice of both won’t end when the semester does.

What kind of positive change have you made in your life that has had a great effect on your health?

Lots of love,

AprilSignatur

Trying something new: Eating Clean

My mom and I hiking in Malibu

This week, I’m trying something new. After a somewhat bad-eating weekend (a cupcake here and movie popcorn there), I decided I wanted to do a re-set. I wanted to eat clean.
So since Tuesday morning, I haven’t eaten a single processed thing. NOT ONE PROCESSED THING. Nary a processed “convenience” item has passed my lips. I realized I eat a lot of packaged crap on Weight Watchers – the frozen SmartOnes baked Ziti, little Weight Watchers chocolate cream cakes, peeps, crystal light, fiber one bars… My Yo-Yoing has made me realize it doesn’t matter if it keeps me on plan or within my points. It’s still crap, and it’s stuff I wouldn’t want my future children eating daily, so why am I? It’s easy to pop a SmartOne into the microwave on days when I’m heading to class or stuck in a lunch meeting, but I’m kind of over them. Sure, they’re tasty and low points, but they’re also filled with salt and preservatives. I’m not raggin’ on them, because it works, but I think I’m relying on them too much. Crap is crap is crap no matter how it’s packaged, marketed or prepared.

I’ve stayed in my points allotment but I’m doing it a little differently. Here’s how: tons of vegetables, fresh fruits, dried fruits, seeds, lean protein and water and tea. LOTS OF IT. Here’s what I ate yesterday (and stayed within my points allotment on):

1 Apricot Mango Greek Yogurt, Organic (8 points – I mistakenly bought the full fat version and wondered why it was so damn delicious and tasted like icecream. Then I calculated the points. Haha!)
1 Mug of Green Mint Tea (0 points)
1 Banana (0 points)

1/2 cup pumpkin seeds in shell (4 points)
2 cups vegetable beef soup, homemade (packed with spinach, zucchini, carrots, celery, onions, cabbage, peas and tomatoes) 5 points
4 prunes (2 points)
Water

1/2 Cup Cantaloupe (0 points)
1/2 Cup Pineapple (0 points)

Grilled chicken breast (boneless, skinless) 4 points
1 cup asparagus, sauteed (1 point)
1 small baked potato with butter (5 points)
Water

4 slices dried mango (3 points)
3 squares 85% dark chocolate (2 points)
Water

I’m actually somewhat under points on this, but I don’t feel hungry. I’m not even craving diet pepsi, which is weird because I usually have one at every lunch. This is probably TMI for you so close your eyes and skip to the next line if you’re squeamish, but I’m also like….regular. Haha! I have no idea what this little plan of mine will result in tomorrow on the scale, but I’m hoping it’s good. If it’s not, I’ll decide what to do then. I also have been walking at least a mile on breaks at work every day, and yesterday I did an hour of dance class. On Sunday, I hiked for two hours with Matt and my mom. I’m trying, and like Thomas the train, I’m chugging along saying to myself, “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can….”.

Have you ever tried to do a “detox” of sorts by eating clean? How did it go?