7 Habits of Highly Successful “Weight Losers”

Are you struggling to lose weight? Do you often wonder why some people stay thin and want to know their secret? Here are 7 habits that are consistent with people who lose weight and keep it off.

  1. They do some form of exercise most days of the week. 
  2. They eat breakfast.
  3. They have portion control
  4. They stick with basic, whole foods.
  5. They have a method to keep track of calories/nutrients.
  6. They deal with emotional eating issues.
  7. They have a support system in place. 

How many habits are true for you?

If you are struggling with some of these habits and have picked up poor habits that are contributing to your weight gain, maybe it is time to face each bad habit and work to change them, ONE at a time.

For example: if skipping breakfast is a bad habit you have, then each day when you wake up, try to have something small to eat, such as a hard boiled egg, fruit, yogurt or oatmeal. You must do this for 21 days to break a bad habit and create a new one.

Do this until you can check off all 7 habits. This may take you 7 months long, but it is worth it because it is a permanent change.  Most people try to change too many things at once which can be very difficult and leads to failure and giving up.

Small steps and you are on your way to a healthier, fitter, happier YOU!

Reach out for help in creating habits that last.

Your Friendly Naturopath,

jen-banners-3-1030x242Dr. Jen Cisternino, ND

416-301-3477

[email protected]

My Birthday Message to You

Top-10-birthday-quotes-05“Another year older, another year wiser, with increasing love, joy and gratitude in my heart and soul” ~~Dr. Jennifer

Yesterday was my birthday and I am feeling so blessed and grateful for all the experiences I have had in my life, both positive and seemingly “negative”. I have learned to cherish the difficult times and challenges I have faced, as they were pivotal to my spiritual growth. I have learned to celebrate the small things as well as the “big” achievements, since I am always trying my best and I know that this is enough.

As I reflect on my life thus far, which most people do around the time of their birthday, I would like to share with you words of wisdom that I live by. This wisdom has come to me through my experiences, through books, movies, spiritual teachers, meditations, my clinical practice and a ceaseless “curiosity” about life. I hope that these words will help you find peace, love, newfound knowledge, greater health and inspiration to live a life you have always dreamed of.  It is never too late! Remember, age is just a number 😉

10 truths Dr. Jen has come to know:

  1. Learning to love myself unconditionally has been the hardest thing to do but the most precious gift I have given myself. Unconditional love for self and others has been the healer and the creator in my life.
  2. My thoughts play an important part in my life. My beliefs shape my reality and the life I live. I choose to think positive and constructive thoughts about myself and others.
  3. I am a human being with unlimited potential. We all are. When you know this, you begin to create and imagine your dreams coming true with more strength and vigour. Reach for the stars!
  4. God/Source is in all that we are and all that we do. We are an extension of His/Her/Source energy. Therefore, we do not need to look outward for help, but instead inward.
  5. Your life is not measured by how much money/possessions you have or by how many people you know. What matters is that you love unconditionally, help when you can and make a difference where you can.
  6. I believe that my purpose in life is to be the most loving person to myself and to also teach others how to love themselves and all those around. When this happens, miracles happen and healing takes place on all levels- mind, body and spirit.
  7. Every disease that we create-yes, we create-stems from a lack of self love.
  8. Practicing gratitude is the key to being happy and loving. Happiness is a choice that you make.
  9. You are in charge of your life. All that you experience is a result of your thoughts and behaviours. Taking personal responsibility for your health and life is extremely important and necessary in the face of change.
  10. The Universe is always supporting me, guiding me, loving me and appreciating me. Realize that this is the same is for YOU. Acknowledging this is awakening!

With Loving Kindness,

Dr. Jen Cisternino, ND

Do you LOVE Yourself?

Let me ask you a question you probably don’t get asked everyday and that is “Do you love yourself?”

If you answered “Yes”, then lets answer the next few questions:

I recommend you get a pen and paper and answer these questions honestly and thoroughly. Don’t rush. Take your time. You are worth it!

  1. What behaviours reflect the love you have for yourself?
  2. Are you happy? If not, why?
  3. Are you healthy? If not, why?

After completing these questions, see if your answer has changed. If you answered yes and you love yourself then awesome! Keep it up 🙂

If you answered “No” to my initial question, Why?

What has happened or not happened that has made you feel this way?

On a piece of paper, list some of the reasons why you do not love yourself. Take your time. This is important.

What if I told you that until you come to a place of unconditional self love, you would always feel unhappy, judge yourself, never feel that you do enough, have enough or are enough? Would you still choose to not love yourself?

What does unconditional love look like?

Unconditional love for self is total self acceptance. It is looking at yourself in a mirror and saying “I love you, I accept you, I forgive you, I appreciate you, I am here for you always.” Try this. This is a powerful exercise that can help you see the parts that you do not accept about yourself, which is the ego talking, not the true authentic self.

The ego says, “I will love you when………fill in the blank……you lose weight……you get a better paying job…..you get married…….you buy a house…….etc. The ego operates on conditions, hence conditional love. Opposite of the love that I am asking you to have.

I am asking you to connect to the authentic love that exists in you. Choose to love yourself NOW. When you make this choice, your thoughts become more positive which affect your actions being more loving and self serving, which essentially changes your life for the better. Why wouldn’t you want that for yourself? Self love draws in more of what you want and desire in an equally matching and loving way.

What happened and why don’t I love myself?

You must understand that as children, our parents were our first teachers when it came to love. Some parents are better teachers than others. The relationships we had with them and the one that was modeled to us by them played a very important role in our definition of love.

Ask yourself this:

What did my parents teach me about love?

Do I have the same beliefs today?

I am modeling these same beliefs today?

These may be positive or negative, however, very important in how your thoughts and beliefs were shaped. If you are not satisfied with your belief or it is not serving you, then work to change it. You do not have to limit yourself because of your past. Change your beliefs and see your life change.

If you are ready to jump into love, reach out as I can help you one on one come to this place. You will be healthier in mind, body and spirit. It is a journey, and definitely worth the trip!

Further reading on love can also be found in the book Loveability by Robert Holden.

Much love,

profile picDr. Jen Cisternino, ND

Let’s Change the Conversation We Have About Weight Loss

Street signs decide on same old way or change choose new path and direction

Too often I hear people conversing with each other saying things like: “Look how fat I look”, “you shouldn’t eat that, it will give you cellulite”,”I hate the way I look”, “I am on a carb-free diet and I have lost 8 lbs in one week”, “I need to lose weight, I am so unhappy”. One of the most talked about topics among couples, families and friends is weight loss and body image. How depressing! There are so many beautiful things to talk about like fond memories, goals and dreams for the future!

What if we changed the conversation we had with others and ourselves about weight loss? What if instead, we were kinder to each other and spoke words and suggestions that were more loving such as “move your body and eat for nourishment, instead of “let’s go stuff our faces and then diet tomorrow.”

There is a massive negative culture around our physical appearance and looking sexy, thin and fit at all costs.
I am asking you to see yourself and those around you in a different light. See beneath the skin, through the eyes, into the soul of your friends, family and dearest to you, which ultimately is love and light.
Don’t encourage dieting and emphasis on the “physical body shape”. It weakens us and brings on a lot of anxiety and stress. We are all beautiful and we need to encourage those around us to see that beauty.
If you are surrounding yourself with “dieters” who have a very negative self image and are constantly talking about weight gain/loss, do yourself and them a favour and do these 3 things:
1. Stop your friends/family from talking negatively about themselves because it is not helping them in any way. It is actually moving them further away from reaching their goals.
2. Tell them to seek professional help (help with someone who sees weight loss as a lifestyle change not a “restrictive diet”)
3. Say to them, I will support you and I love you just as you are! Let’s go for a walk!

Further example of how to change the conversation:
Friend: “I am so fat, I need to go on a diet.”
You: “You need to stop saying that to yourself. You are beautiful inside and out. If you wish to be healthier in mind and body then I understand. A diet is not the answer. Make some lifestyle changes so that you can be happier. I know a great Naturopath (Dr. Jen) that helps people love and accept themselves as they make changes to their life and health.”

In my past, when I had an eating disorder, I was surrounded by people, friends, family and social media who fed my disorder and probably caused my distorted beliefs about food and my body. I wished so very much that someone could have taken me by the hand and looked into my eyes and said “STOP hurting and punishing yourself. Love and accept yourself just as you are. You are enough. You are a loving soul who has so much love and purpose in this life. I will show you how to love and nourish yourself so you may live a life of happiness, love and great health.” It did not happen exactly this way, but thankfully, I was guided in the right direction and I overcame my eating disorder. I have lived to share my experience and I have more passionate than ever to share my message with the world and all those people who want to lose weight but feel hopeless.

If you are struggling or you know someone who is struggling with weight or body image issues, let me be that person who takes your hand and shows you the way to love and great health! It really is the only way 😉

Your Friendly Naturopath,

profile picDr. Jen Cisternino, ND

242 Appelwood, Unit 3

Concord, On

416-301-3477

[email protected]

What is your purpose? Are you living your potential?

spiritual-awakeningLet me ask you a question you probably don’t get asked everyday: “What is your purpose?”

Over the many years of practicing as a Naturopathic Doctor, I have been trained to ask my patients a lot of questions to ascertain how they feel and what they experience to help them solve their health problems. Some common questions I ask are:  “How many hours of sleep do you get a night? What do you eat each day? Do you experience anxiety? Do you have regular bowel movements?” etc…

As I delve into the spiritual realm and the deeper meaning of our existence, I have added this question to the list: “What is your purpose?”

This question is not always easy to answer. Most people will say, “I don’t know, I have never thought about it before.” Some will say, “My purpose is to be a mom and raise children to the best of my ability” or “to provide for my family” or “to help find a cure for cancer”, among many others. There is no wrong answer. How would you answer this question?

Go ahead and think about the reasons why you were born and what you were called to do? This is definitely a question for the soul so you may need to do some “soul searching”.

If this seems difficult, be patient with yourself. You need not answer right away. Instead, think about what you love doing. When are you at your happiest? When does your heart sing? What activity makes you forget about the world and your worries? For some, it can be painting, drawing, dancing or photography. For others, it is when they are helping other people or helping mother nature.  What is true for you? This can give you insight into your life’s purpose.

I will share with you two different patient interactions I had in regards to this question.  I had a patient tell me that other people were commenting on how good of a photographer she was. She captured the most beautiful moments in the lives of others. She was eloquent and gentle in her approach and it was valued by those around her. She herself loved taking pictures and even loved painting, but did not have the same confidence in herself.  She remained in a secretarial job that brought her no joy at all. This feeling made her hide her talents. This is an example of fear and low self confidence holding you back from exploring your talents.  I advised her not to deny her god given talents and to make strides to admire her work just as much as others did. “Keep practicing, doing and believing”, I suggested to her. Of course, this is the “ego” telling her that her work is not as good as others. When we listen to the “ego” we can easily become stuck in life and unhappy with what we do day to day. What do people tell you you are good at? This can be insight into your talents and gifts that can be shared with the world.

I will mention another story. Be cautious when solely looking to other people for admiration and positive feedback. It is important to not put too much emphasis on other people’s opinions of you and what you do.  A patient of mine came to see me feeling very depressed. She was an interior decorator and she loved her career choice. She did great work and always went over and above for her clients. Over the years, people made positive comments about her work, but also negative ones. Unfortunately, the negative comments stuck a little more and this is all she could think about. She started to have low self confidence and her passion soon became her nemesis. Negative comments made by others can be hurtful and they can prevent someone from fulfilling their life purpose. If you feel this way, then maybe you are being too sensitive to the opinion of others and are not being true to yourself. I advised that she spent some time appreciating and valuing her own work regardless of others’ opinion. I told her that she cannot please everyone and she must first please herself. If her work was done with authenticity and love then it is enough and she is enough. I always tell people to never take any negative comment personally, as most of the times, it is never about them, but instead an insecurity or ego driven thought of another person. I ask that if you are struggling with this, spend some time in deep reflection or seek help.

In this life, you are meant to blossom into more of who you really are not what others think of you or how the ego wants you to be. Finding your authentic nature feels good. When you “are in the flow” of your life,  you become healthier. You digest better, you lose weight, you sleep better and your emotions are that of joy and happiness.

As Dr. Wayne Dyer says, “Don’t die with your music still inside you.” Life is too short to do otherwise!

With Authenticity,

Dr. Jen~ Your Friendly Naturopath

416-301-3477

[email protected]

Why are Infertility rates on the Rise? What you can do.

Natural insemination: sperm and human egg

 

Infertility is defined as the inability for a couple to conceive after trying naturally for one year. In women older than 35, infertility is diagnosed after 6 months of regular, unprotected intercourse.

What is happening?

If you are a female, there are a number of the risk factors that may affect fertility.

  • Maternal age (after age of 35)
  • Medical conditions such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
  • Endometriosis
  • Blocked fallopian tubes (often due to sexually transmitted diseases)
  • Fibroids or polyps in the uterus

If you are a male, risk factors that may contribute to infertility are:

  • Paternal age (although this does not affect men to the same extent as women, it can decrease sperm quality and levels of testosterone)
  • Medical conditions having to do with the male reproductive system
  • Exposure to sexually transmitted diseases

Risk factors for both include:

  • Being overweight or obese
  • Smoking
  • Drinking too much alcohol or caffeine
  • Cancer treatments (chemotherapy or radiation)

What about my career?

More women are entering the work force and delaying childbirth. If this sounds like you, I think it is important to consider your health, the amount of stress you have and how this can potentially affect your fertility. Sometimes we need to be reminded that the human body is not a machine and needs nourishment. Our bodies do not have any “on” or “off” switches. Being pregnant is no simple task and so the right amount of nutrients, balanced hormones, and rest is required. I advise women to think about their wants about having a child, and try to prepare their bodies and mind at least 6 months before they plan on conceiving.

What about stress?

We have all heard the saying “stress kills”, but most people do not believe this to be true or sure don’t act like it’s true. In my clinical practice, I have witnessed the causal link of how stress weakens the physical body as well as the mind and soul. There is an apparent “societal push” to work more, have more and earn more. With this mentality, there leaves little room for relaxation, play and joy in one’s life. Individually, it is wise to manage your stress and learn to trust and listen to your authentic self rather than the ego. Social media has become an open book for the way people live their lives. It is also a place where the ego decides that what you have is not enough in comparison to others and can leave you feeling hopeless, angry and sad. If you have been struggling with fertility issues, I would advise that you take a social media holiday for a few months and see how you feel.

Are you healthy?

If you have a known medical condition that might pose a risk for fertility, and your future offspring, then take some time to nourish yourself to better health and vitality. Naturopathic Doctors do a great job at helping the body heal with nutrition, herbs, supplementation, acupuncture, stress management and lifestyle modifications.

I always suggest that each partner spend time improving their health in mind, body and spirit.

Try these simple lifestyle modifications:

    • Avoid antibiotic/hormone fed animal meats and GMO foods.
    • Exercise 5 days a week.
    • Eat 8 servings of fruits and vegetables.
    • Take a high quality multivitamin.
    • Avoid caffeine, alcohol and cigarettes.
    • Find ways to manage stress. ie. yoga, journaling, meditation, acupuncture.
    • Connect and strengthen your love and bond with your partner.

With both partners healthy, not only does this increase your chance of fertility but also makes you a healthier parent for your child. The future generations depend on your health. It starts with you.

 If you are trying to conceive without success, ask yourself these questions:

  1. What do I believe to be true for the reasons I have not yet had a baby?
  2. Have I done everything I can to help my situation? Including the naturopathic options? Acupuncture?
  3. Is there a lesson in this journey I am on?

“Unexplained Infertility”

If you have been given this diagnosis, I am sure it is frustrating. Sometimes the medical community cannot come up with a diagnosis. However, if you see an acupuncturist or naturopath we see the body in a holistic way and through our means of diagnosis we can help you increase energy, balance and relaxation.

Be kind with your words when asking about childbearing to a couple.

Due to the increased number of fertility rates, I advise that people be more considerate when asking a couple about children. Of the patients I have treated, a similar report was that people are so insensitive to the topic and it bothers them tremendously. It can be very emotionally draining going through the process of trying to conceive. If you are someone who has never gone through it, what you can do is be sympathetic and avoid questions such as “when are you going to have a baby?”

Love yourself a little more.

As you know, I am the Naturopath who preaches on having more self love. Self love is the healer for all things. Miracles are created out of love. A lot of women can be hard on themselves, blame themselves and have tremendous guilt if things are not going to plan. This does not help you. Healing on a deeper level through a process of forgiving and loving is necessary. Detoxing the mind from fear can also be helpful. Fear is a negative emotion that inhabits the body and causes destruction. It starts in the mind, and finds its way into the heart and soul. Only love can conquer fear. I urge you to look at the thoughts and beliefs that shape your fears and try to work on changing them to ones that are more positive and loving. This takes time and a lot of effort but it is worth it. Here are some affirmations you can do to be more loving on your journey to motherhood. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WDr5TaABRyg

I believe that each and every one of us has been called to be more loving towards ourselves and others. Love can create miracles. Try loving yourself a little more.

Reach out if you would like support. I offer support and nourishment for the mind, body and soul.

Dr. Jen Cisternino, ND

[email protected]

www.drjencisternino.com

416-301-3477

 

 

 

I am constantly TIRED. HELP ME!

fatigue

 

 

Hey you! Yes you, I know reading this is a struggle, isn’t it? You have been putting off helping yourself because you have no time. You are either a busy mom or dad, work full time, stressed out student (been there), entrepreneur or might have just had a change in your life or need a change. Or maybe none of the above, but you are still not feeling up to life..

It really does not matter the reason for the fatigue or as I call it lack of self care, my goal is to help “pick you up” so that you may take better care of yourself and resolve this fatigue.

What is the definition of FATIGUE: Lack of energy and motivation.

There are many possible causes for fatigue:

  • Low iron/minerals
  • Underactive Thyroid
  • Adrenal Fatigue
  • Sleep Disorders: Insomnia, Sleep Apnea
  • Depression
  • Stress/Negative Environment
  • Grief
  • Anti-depressants
  • Substance abuse
  • Chronic Pain
  • The list continues…

Let me ask you these questions:

  1. Do you get at least 7 hour of sound sleep a night?
  2. Do you have a well balanced diet? Eat fruits, vegetables, lean protein and whole grains each day?
  3. Do you have more water than coffee each day?
  4. Do you manage your stress by meditating, finding inner peace and relaxation each day?
  5. Do you exercise 3 x a week?
  6. Do you have positive loving thoughts each day about yourself?

If you answered NO to some or all of these questions, then maybe it is time you make some changes to your day to day routine.  If you do, you may noticed better energy and vitality.

You see, the human body is not a machine. It needs nourishment on all levels- mind, body and spirit. A feeling of fatigue is your body sending you a signal that you need to change something about how you live your life day to day. It may also be a signal that you should seek help to interrogate further the cause of your fatigue so that you may restore your body/mind back into balance.

Positive Mindset for Fatigue:

How many times a day do you say to yourself or others, “I AM TIRED”. Did you know that your thoughts have a direct effect on how you feel?  Changing your thoughts can do wonders for your energy. Each day say this to yourself instead: “I feel great. I am well rested and energetic. I have all the energy I need to do all my tasks today.” 

Reach out if you would like to resolve your fatigue once and for all.  A wholistic approach can provide you with the most benefits long term. Here to help!

With an abundance of energy!

Dr. Jen Cisternino, Naturopath

416-301-3477

[email protected]

242 Applewood Cresc- Unit 3. concord

6 Reasons Why The Weight Loss Industry is FAILING YOU!

ABCDid you know that the weight loss industry is a multi-billion dollar industry? Did you also know that the rates of obesity are on the rise and are at an all time high? What is happening and why aren’t people being helped to make permanent changes to their health? I think I have some answers.

Here are some of the misconceptions of the “weight loss industry” that you should be aware of.

 

  1. You need to go “ON” a DIET and restrict yourself to lose weight. Think back to how many diets you have been on and off? Maybe 10-20? How successful were they for you? How many times do you come across an ad claiming “lose 10 lbs in 10 days”? To boot, they tell you Jennifer Aniston does this diet and this is the reason she looks good. So you think to yourself, “OK, let’s do this! More motivation to eat celery and protein all day if I can look like Jennifer Aniston!” But Remember this truth, anytime you go ON a diet, you are going to come OFF a diet. Then what? Most people who go on restrictive diets and lose weight initially, find themselves eventually gaining the weight back and more! The weight finds them again, taking them back to square one, trying to find the next “quick fix” to lose it again. Most people are filled with guilt, shame, failure and regret. Let me tell you, there are many quick fix diets out there but none are healthy and sustainable. This type of dieting is called yo-yo dieting. It is actually more harmful for the human body and mind than being overweight. It is my mandate that lifestyle changes are the way to go. My mantra holds true, EVERYTHING IN MODERATION!
  2. If you lose weight you will be happy. I can’t tell you how many times I hear, “I am depressed because I am overweight. If I just lose 10 lbs I will be happy”. The 10 lbs comes off and I ask people if they are any happier? They usually respond “not as much as I thought”. Why is this? Because your physical appearance is one thing. Your life, marriage, family, career, living situation and thoughts about these things don’t change because you lost some weight. Some people have more confidence as a result of weight loss, but at the core, they are unchanged and their environment tends to remain the same. I advise my patients to get happy first, and weight loss will happen as a result with very little effort.
  3. You need WILL POWER to lose weight. So here is the truth. Yes will power can help get you started, but something stronger than our will to lose weight are the thoughts and beliefs that we have about ourselves. Over the long run, it is our beliefs and thoughts that win the battle over will power. Our beliefs and thoughts strongly influence our behavior. The behaviour may be to restrict food, binge eat, sit on the couch all day, give up or try harder. If someone has a very negative self image and at their core they tell themselves “I am fat, I am worthless” and believe that they never succeed at anything, no amount of will power will help them lose the weight they desire. Your self-image, thoughts and beliefs must be in alignment with your desire for success to happen.
  4. Your emotions don’t matter when it comes to weight loss. This is not something that is talked about often enough. In the media, there is a lot of emphasis on food control and exercise techniques. But what about the emotions that underlie one’s ability to eat well, make healthy choices and move their body? I am a firm believer that if you carry emotional weight, this will drive you to eat and sooner or later, this will manifest as physical weight. So emotions play a huge role in helping you lose weight. No diet that I ever went on asked me to look at why I eat or how to heal my emotions.
  5. It’s your hormones not you! Ok so we know that hormonal fluctuations can increase weight gain around the abdomen and thighs, especially estrogen in women. We also know that people who have higher stress have increased abdominal weight due to higher than normal cortisol levels. Now here is the thing– these hormones don’t just show up in our bodies and start spiking for no reason. Our brain controls these hormones. We have total control over our brains. Yes we do! Most people don’t stop to think about the thoughts they feed their body each day. Hear me out again. You have the CHOICE to choose positive thoughts or negative ones. If you choose negative, then your hormones will be reflective of thoughts of fear, stress, anxiety, depression, etc. So in a nut shell, you can control your hormones by controlling your thoughts and behaviours. This last remark is for the menopausal women who say, “well after I hit menopause all this weight came on and I can’t take it off”. If that is a belief you have then that will be true for you always. Change your thoughts, change your body.
  6. Your body needs a pill or supplement to lose weight. Did you know that the body has an amazing ability to heal itself and find balance naturally? The weight loss industry does a good job of making you feel like you can’t achieve a healthy weight unless you do something drastic or take something to help. Did you also know that most of the claims supplements/drug companies make are falsified and not clinically researched? This is disheartening and can lead to negative health consequences. I fell into this trap when I took fat burners to help me burn fat faster. Did it work? NO! It gave me anxiety which in turn made me want to eat more. How about garcinia cambogia? In 2009, the FDA warned everyone to stop taking it because people were developing serious liver problems. I wouldn’t want that for myself, but some people are so desperate to fit into a size 2 they will risk their lives! Ads and infomercials tell you that you need to take something to help you lose weight. WRONG! Stop looking outside yourself and I urge you to look within. Start by asking yourself some personal questions. Explore your behaviours, beliefs and self image. Ask yourself why you have these thoughts about yourself? You have all the answers and your body has all the tools it needs to bring you back to health and balance.

Why am I so passionately about writing about this? Many years ago, I struggled with my weight and was desperately searching for ways to lose weight. I tried all sorts of diets– liquid diets, no carb diets, diet pills, over-exercising, etc. NOTHING worked because they were too restrictive, unhealthy and quite frankly, I was looking in the wrong places. When I began to look “within”, I realized what I needed. It wasn’t products or strict diets. It was self-love, respect and happiness. I started an exploration within myself which involved addressing my emotions, thoughts, limiting beliefs, and poor self-image. Through a process, I ultimately created a healthier environment within myself. My outer reality began to reflect my inner loving self. Weight loss happened almost immediately and effortlessly without much concern about food. It truly was a remarkable experience and I can’t begin to tell you how freeing it is to not concern myself with weight issues. I want the same for you! It is my mission to help you achieve a healthy mind, body and soul.

If you would like to lose weight for good and explore the root cause of your weight gain,  please send an email to: [email protected] I have a program that I can offer you which can change your life and end your struggles with weight forever!

Talk soon!

Dr. Jen Cisternino, ND

416-301-3477

[email protected]

What you need to know if you are preparing for MOTHERHOOD

AS

Motherhood- A Holistic Approach Pre and Post Conception

Being a mother is both a gift and a blessing. This role is an honor and divine creation. The process of procreation is so delicate and beautiful. Once conception occurs in a woman’s body, the rest of her pregnancy is taken care of by the subtle love and energy of the Higher Spirit. Have you ever sat back and been amazed at how carefully and precisely the infant develops in 9 months in the womb? From the beautiful creation of cells that come together to form the brain, ears, eyes, heart and all the organs, glands and bones that it needs to live and thrive. It truly is a miracle and a gift from above. What amazes me is that this process happens in the perfect time without the need for human interference. The mother does not need to think about creating all these tiny body parts for her child. She does not have to feed her child or make sure he/she sleeps. The one responsibility God gives a mother is to ensure that she foster a healthy environment in which the baby can grow. What does this environment look like? I will share with you my beliefs based on books by Dr. Northrup, Louise Hay and from my clinical experiences and innate wisdom.

  1. A healthy, fertile environment must be TOXIN-FREE. Most women need to detoxify the body before pregnancy and I do highly suggest this. Part of the detoxification process is ensuring that the body is clear of things like:
  • The Birth Control Pill– stop for at least 3 months before conception
  • Smoking (Tobacco and Marijuana) or any other Drug- stop for at least one year before; this includes being around people who smoke- 2nd hand smoke is just as harmful.
  • Alcohol– remove for at least 3 months before conception
  • Caffeine– remove for at least 3 months before conception
  • Remove CHEMICALS AND JUNK FOOD: Remove saturated fats, trans fats, aspartame, fast food, packaged food, artificial dyes, pesticides, chemicals, preservatives and even suspected Food Allergies (we can test for this in my clinic) for at least 6 months and continue as a part of your lifestyle.
  1. Ensure that you have all the VITAMINS and MINERALS you need to keep you and baby healthy and flourishing. There is a strong cultural belief in society that the mother should sacrifice everything for the sake of the child. A lot of women with this belief will not take vitamins because they figure the baby will take what they have leaving them depleted and this is ok. It is NOT ok. This can lead to a lot of negative health consequences like thyroid disorder, weight gain, post-partum depression, anxiety and more. How is a mother to care for her child, if she cannot care for herself? You can ensure that you are getting adequate doses of minerals by taking a good quality multivitamin. I meet a lot of women who take Materna and I will mention that it is not the highest quality vitamin out there. Most women who take this one-a day vitamin feel very nauseous; hence they stop. Overloading the body with vitamins all at once (one a day) can upset any stomach, as if the hormones in pregnancy aren’t enough. I recommend all women take a high grade Prenatal for at least one year before pregnancy. The vitamin I suggest is dosed one per meal to ensure easy digestion and absorption. (If you want to take a test to see your mineral content, we can do this in my clinic with a hair sample)
  2. A healthy environment is one that is STRESS-FREE: Did you know that when a woman is pregnant and experiencing stress, less blood flows to the growing fetus? Chronic stress can starve a child of essential nutrients. Did you also know that the stress hormones that circulate in a woman’s body can also circulate in the fetus? Can you imagine giving birth to a baby who is already stressed? We have been cultured to believe that until a baby is born, there is not much to do but wait and go for ultrasounds and take some vitamins. WRONG! With this awareness, do your best to manage your stress. It is easier to find healthy ways to cope with stress NOW before you decide to birth a being into this world. I believe this is why acupuncture works so well in my office because it gives women a chance to relax, understand their stresses and let go of any negative emotions.
  3. Get to a HEALTHY WEIGHT: Women who are overweight increase their risk of complications during pregnancy and may have more difficulty conceiving. Most women I meet who are overweight (I was there once too) tend to have a negative self- image, low self-esteem and poor lifestyle habits. If having children is a necessity then let that motivate you to take the right steps to lose weight. (I offer a lot of support in this area so reach out) The healthier you become in mind, body and spirit, the healthier your child will be. Did you know that a child born to a mother with an eating disorder will be more likely to develop one themselves?
  4. Remove TOXIC EMOTIONS: I am referring to the emotions of fear, guilt, sadness, anger, hurt, shame, jealousy, judgment. Imagine creating a pure innocent baby in that toxic environment. The mental/emotional aspect of pregnancy is often overlooked but it must not be. The only way to release negative emotions is to become aware of them and take the appropriate steps to resolve the thoughts and beliefs that tend to accompany the emotion. In your marriage/relationship, if you are having arguments, having a baby is not going to resolve the arguments. Resolve the issues before you have the child. This may take time, but it is so essential and freeing. Forgiveness is really the only way to release your past and move forward.
  5. Be prepared to BREAST FEED: Breast feeding your baby is one of the surest ways to cultivate a healthy loving environment in which baby and mother bond and the baby feels safe and secure in her world with her needs being met. Not only that, milk from the breast is the cleanest (if your diet is also clean). Breast fed babies tend to have a healthy weight and decreased risk of allergies and asthma among many other conditions. I know some women who try really hard to breast feed but are unable to produce enough milk. If this is the case, don’t hold emotions of guilt or anger. Let it go and know you tried your best.
  6. Practice unconditional SELF LOVE and SELF ACCEPTANCE: This is a must and not only will it help you to conceive, it will help you foster a healthy environment for your child to flourish. Did you know that the more you love yourself, the more people feel loved by you. How amazing is that? You wouldn’t want to withhold love from your child, so don’t withhold it from yourself.  I ask that you look back on your childhood and explore the relationship you had with your mother. What was it like? Did you wish it was different? If so, what would you change? Try to emanate those qualities that you feel would have provided you with a more loving foundation in which to build self esteem and healthy values. Most people report that they wished their mothers were more loving and supportive and less controlling and judgmental. Children are very perceptive and soon enough they will start to look and act like you. Be the best version of you for you and baby.
  7. Assess your DESIRE to have a child. Be honest with yourself. Are you ready? Are you scared? Do you feel pressured? Have a heartfelt conversation with yourself, God and also with your partner. Some people decide to have a child because it is what society puts pressure on if you are female and over 25 years old. Some people have a child out of fear because they believe that if they reach a certain age they won’t be fertile. There is a lot of information floating around about infertility but don’t let that scare you. Please don’t let this fear get into your beliefs, because trust me, your beliefs affect your physical body. If you cultivate healthy thoughts, self love and nourish yourself emotionally and physically you are well on your way to becoming a mom!

If you would like more support, whether it be nutritional, emotional or best ways to relax and detox, reach out and send an email to [email protected]

I also perform Acupuncture in my office for fertility and relaxation.

Warmly,

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Dr. Jen Cisternino, ND

[email protected]

416-301-3477

www.drjencisternino.com

What JUNK are you feeding your MIND? You are not a Trash Can!

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Can you imagine being fed “junk” all day and not even knowing it?! I heard a lecture given by Joel Osteen that was titled “Don’t let that shit get into your mind”. It peaked my interest and after hearing it, I agree wholeheartedly with his message. I was already subconsciously “detoxing” my mind and spirit and feeling great! I wish the same for you. What does this look like you ask? I will share with you later in the blog. But first, what is the “junk” we are feeding our minds?  When you hear the word “feeding”, you automatically think about FOOD. I wont be talking about food in this blog, as I think there are enough articles about healthy eating. I will be addressing the stuff that feeds the brain, specifically, the subconscious.  I am referring to “the noise” we hear and “the sights” we see and read about each day. These things are being programmed into our subconscious minds and most people are not even aware of the effect it has on our mood, thoughts and behaviour. The subconscious mind is a part of the brain that houses our beliefs, thoughts and how they both play out in our daily lives. You can consider it the seat of the soul, our direction and driving force behind most decisions we make in our life. Why wouldn’t you want to protect this part of your brain? Let me describe a few things that I believe are “polluting” the minds of human beings. My goal here is to make you aware, shed light on the issue and help you to become an awakened being who has control over the trash you take in.  After each concern I have included affirmations, which are positive statements to help you.

  1. Video Games: I am referring to the video games that promote violence such as fighting, killing and shooting. Several studies have demonstrated the link between violent video games and increased aggression. These games initiate feelings of anger, anxiety and at some level enjoyment and pleasure. Subconsciously children and adults who play these games are becoming more aggressive and some even go on to commit crimes and acts of violence. This exemplifies the power of the subconscious mind. Affirmation: I will not let video games pollute my mind or my child’s mind.
  2. Social Media: I am referring to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snap Chat etc. Specifically, I am referring to the content that may be less uplifting such as people venting about their life, trash talking other people, exploiting their bodies, bullying and judgements that are formed because people’s lives are “open books”. I am not saying that all social media is bad, however for a subset of people, it has been shown to increase rates of depression, isolation, anxiety and even suicide. Why? Social media has become a platform for people to post all sorts of things. It has also become a platform where people compare their lives to people’s highlight reel.  This is the EGO’s favourite place to be!  You and I both know that most people will post only the “good times”.  Most commonly wedding pictures, engagements, babies, relationships, vacations, family gatherings etc. Although those are happy and joyous moments, if you are someone who is seeing this, you may believe that you have to achieve all these things in order to be happy. Spend less time on social media or choose to connect with people that are inspirational and authentic.  Affirmation: I will not let social media pollute my mind.
  3. TV Shows: It is said that the television programs that are created and watched cater to common day people. The shows that people watch pertain to families that are arguing and full of drama, the married couple that is having issues or the working businessman who cheats on his wife, etc. If you immerse yourself in TV show drama, guess what…TV will create your character. You will draw more drama into your life. Be aware that television glamorizes a lot of the wrong things, especially in marriage. It is said that 91% of intimacy on TV is shown outside the marriage, in affairs. This can work on your subconscious mind, lowering your standards and eventually temptation may be harder to resist.  Affirmation: I will not let TV shows pollute my mind.
  4. Radio: I have been so much more aware of the messages the songs on the radio carry. I always wondered why I woke up in a great mood and then once I got to work, after listening to the radio, I felt different, like something shifted. I started to listen to the song lyrics and realized they are not positive at all! You have to understand that singers/song writers write as a way to express their emotions, their pain, breakups, affairs, power struggles, etc. If you truly are aware of the songs’ meanings, you will stay clear of the negative messages they are feeding your subconscious mind. Listening to Adele or Sam Smith can definitely make you feel sad. Listening to Drake will make you feel like relationships are a waste of time because “you used to call me on my cell phone”. Did you know that the average American spends 400 hours a year in the car. That is a lot of time to be dumping trash into your mind. What are you feeding yourself? Affirmation: I will not let depressing/low vibrational songs pollute my mind.
  5. The News/Newspaper: Are you someone who stays up late to watch the news or must be “in the know” about what is happening in the world around you. Most of the time, the news will highlight all that is wrong in our society. The stabbings, the killings, the accidents, the deaths, the robbing, destruction etc. This promotes emotions of fear, anxiety and worry. This is what you are feeding yourself when you watch the news. Some people will argue that it is good to know what is happening so you are aware and can be on the watch and protect those around you. For some instances yes, but 90% of the time, focusing on the negative and being in a state of fear doesn’t help anyone. The time before bed is when you should be relaxing and programming positive intentions for the day ahead. If you watch the news and go to sleep in a state of fear and worry, this will stay with you in your subconscious mind owing to feelings of anxiety. Some people will read the paper first thing in the morning, sending the brain messages of fear and worry. Not a great way to start your day is it? How would your life be different if you started your day with some exercise, meditation and positive visualizations? Affirmation: I will not let the news pollute my mind.
  6. Negative People: If you surround yourself with people who are always complaining, enjoy drama and conflict, I suggest you lessen your time with these people. I don’t know about you, but I work hard to keep my energy levels up and protect my essence. You are who you hang around. So choose your company wisely. If you have friends who are not happy in their marriages and are always complaining…. guess what, sooner or later you will find something to complain about in your own marriage. If you hang around people who do drugs, smoke and have unhealthy behaviours….. guess what, sooner or later you may find yourself doing the same. It is your duty and responsibility to be the best version of yourself. This is my aim so that I may be the best for my husband, children, family and patients. We are put on this earth to fulfill a purpose and to be beings of light who help others. If we allow negative people to bring us down, it will be hard to do just that. Affirmation: I will not let negative people pollute my mind.

DETOX YOUR SUBCONSCIOUS MIND/DETOX YOUR LIFE

So I am asking you to DETOX your mind. Say those affirmations above and try to make the changes I am suggesting below. You may need to start with one. Progress is the aim.

  1. I am asking you for one week to watch only TV shows that are uplifting and positive…better yet, keep the tube off and engage in conversation with your loved ones or do some physical activity.
  2. I am asking you to turn your radio off when you drive or put in a relaxing CD or maybe one with positive affirmations.
  3. I am asking you to ditch the negative people in your life…OK, this may not be possible, but spend less time with them if you can and let them know that you are trying to be more positive.
  4. If you have children, remove them from their video games and really be aware of what they are experiencing and how it is affecting their minds. Spend time reading, laughing or playing with your children instead. If you yourself play video games, take a break for a while and see how you feel.
  5. Go on a social media detox! I did this and it feels amazing. At a minimum, unfriend negative, drama filled people on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter and only follow people that are genuine, loving and inspirational, like ME!       FB: Dr. Jen Cisternino, ND Instagram: dr_jen_cisternino
  6. Try not to engage in the negative news! Don’t read the newspaper or listen to the news for one week. You will notice that the things you were concerning yourself with have very little to do with you anyway. At a minimum, don’t listen to the news before bed. Fill your mind with positive thoughts and affirmations like “I am healthy, I am happy, I am loving, I am blessed, I am grateful for all that I have”.

I hope to have shed light on some of the lesser known ways you are polluting your mind which is preventing you from experiencing true love and happiness. Try these tip or newfound way of life and let me know how the experience is for you. Please write to [email protected] or leave a comment below.

Thanks and Be Well 🙂

Soulfully yours,

Dr. Jen Cisternino, Naturopath, Blogger, Speaker

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