February 17, 2016

School is back, routine is returning, and many women can now turn their attention to themselves, even for just a short time each day. If you’ve been off-track over the past month or two, don’t worry about it. It’s quite normal to have ups and downs, and of course there are times in life where you need to focus on other things. To get started again, you may need the 10 Step Restart Action Plan later in the newsletter.

Our 2015 Slimmer of the Year competition had three winners: one for the most weight lost and two for the Most Inspiring Story – we couldn’t split them! Read one of these stories from Billie: a true inspiration in every sense of the word.

Valentine’s Day is coming up and with it the too-easy gifts of flowers and chocolates. If you have a loved one who likes to spoil you in this way, get in early and let them know that chocolate is off your wish-list year. It may help to have a stand-by suggestion… Diamonds, anyone? In all seriousness, if you’re trying to lose weight then it is important that your loved one supports and encourages your efforts, so it may be up to you to help them avoid sabotaging you.

Healthy Inspirations is interested in more than just weight loss and exercise: did you know that we share many links on our Facebook page? If you don’t already Like us, take a look and get a regular dose of inspiration, information and education.

Slimmer of the Year Winner – Billie L, Frewville, SA

Lost 26.4 kilos

2014 was a tough year for me, after tragically losing both my sister and brother in February and May of that year unexpectedly.

My sister left behind four beautiful children that I now help to care for with my parents. Through this huge upturn in our family, I found comfort in food and work. I kept my self very busy working 3 part time jobs and studying full time. I had always been overweight since my early teenage years; however I had gained even more by the end of that year through grief, and simply not prioritising my own needs.

I was physically and emotionally exhausted, always reaching for food to gain energy. One morning on my way home from work, I fell asleep at the steering wheel. I realised I had suffered a huge sugar drop after eating a bag of lollies on night shift, and this was my wake-up call that something had to change. It was this same week that my friend invited me to a class at Healthy Inspirations, and so my journey began! It has been a fun but challenging experience with endless shift work and family commitments, all while trying to complete my degree! I set a goal to achieve my weight loss by the time I graduated as a Registered Nurse. I was looking forward to wearing the dress of my dreams for the Graduation Ball, and savour the moment with all of my beautiful nursing sisters. That night, I had achieved my goal and was able to celebrate the two greatest achievements of my adult life!

I am a huge believer of being the change I want to see in the world. As a nurse, I wanted to achieve health and practice what I preached! This will always keep me accountable and motivated to inspire others by being true to myself. The happiness effect of weight loss is contagious, and people around me have been inspired to make changes in their life too. Already, my Mum has lost 12 kg in the last 3 months by following the Healthy Inspirations reset program!

I have come to realise the incredible capability of the human body. Not only of my own body, but that of the whole family at Health Inspirations! The women here are of all ages and backgrounds, and each member has their own story to tell. We inspire each other with flowing positive energy and acknowledge each little win. Women banding together as a powerful force is a catalyst for success!

~ Billie L ~

10 Step Restart Action Plan

Once school goes back it’s common for people to get back on track with their eating plan. Some feel disappointed or ashamed that they did not stick with it during the holiday season, but what they don’t realise is that it’s perfectly normal.

Breaking old habits takes time. These old habits are probably exactly what people slipped back into recently, and they’ve been developing since childhood. Habits are strong predictors of behaviour, and when the going gets tough, or when the demands of life take attention away from the new eating plan, these old habits resurface.

If this happened to you, don’t worry, don’t feel guilty, and don’t think you’re a failure. Just make the commitment now to create new habits, and over time you’ll make these new habits take hold.

So here’s a 10 step action plan to help you get started:

  1. Get ready. Clear your cupboards, desk drawer and car of any foods that are not part of your new eating plan. Don’t test your willpower by allowing this deliberate sabotage opportunity to be present.
  1. Visualise your new goals.Having a clear vision – one you can actually ‘see’ in your mind – helps you to achieve it.
  1. Make a commitment to record everything. Ensure that everything you eat and drink is recorded – whether not it was planned. This helps to identify problems and develop appropriate strategies.
  1. Identify your triggers. What people, situations, times or days signal the return of an old habit that deviates from your healthy eating plan?
  1. Let others know that you’ve made this new commitment. The influence of your family, friends and workmates can be very powerful, but if you don’t tell them they won’t know how to help. Who knows, they might actually join you?
  1. Set your boundaries.What are you willing to avoid in order to achieve your goals? Over time, the power of these temptations becomes gradually less and less.
  1. Commit to the “must do’s”. Adequate water, stress reduction strategies, 7-8 hours of sleep, adding salt to your meals, and engaging in daily physical activity are important for your weight and health.
  1. Plan ahead. Plan your meals and snacks for the week. Being organised means that being tired or busy doesn’t stop you from eating well.
  1. Go back each week and evaluate what you’ve done. You can do this by yourself, with a friend, or you may prefer to have help from your nearest Healthy Inspirations centre.
  1. Ask for help.You will make mistakes. You’ll have questions. You’ll need help. Accept that you don’t have to be alone in this, and ensure that you have the right support.

Is 10,000 steps a day enough?

A Sydney Morning Herald report earlier this week featured an article questioning the effectiveness of walking 10,000 steps daily. Apparently this number was nothing more than a marketing ploy to sell early activity trackers, and somehow it became an urban myth.

The reality, it seems, is that for weight loss you’d need to walk many more steps each and every day to effect change.

The article focused on the effect of activity, so did not make mention of daily dietary patterns in weight loss.

We know that walking, or any form of exercise, is effective in maintaining and, if you push yourself, improving fitness and overall health. Those with weight to lose, however, also need to focus on dietary change. Even if you consider just calories, it’s much easier to adjust your diet to include fewer calories than it is to increase your exercise so that you burn more calories.

It’s important not to get caught up in the idea that losing weight is about eating less and exercising more. Eating too little means that people don’t have the energy to exercise, so how can they then exercise more? It doesn’t make sense.

The article suggests that for those wanting to lose weight and who are not currently active, walking (without dietary change) would require 25,000 steps daily: this is 20km or 50 laps of a running track, and would take about 4 hours and 15 minutes. Who has time for that?

Instead, eating the right types of foods will allow overall caloric intake to reduce while maintaining high energy levels and avoiding hunger. If you feel full of energy and satisfied by your meals and snacks, going out for a walk is easier and it’s certainly easier to walk further if you wish.

Avoiding processed and packaged foods in favour of fresh is a great start. If a farmer, truck driver and shopkeeper are responsible for your food supply, you’ll be doing all right. If chemicals, factories, marketing agencies and multi-national companies play a larger role in your food supply, you may need to think about making a change.

Get your food right and your exercise consistent, and you’ll be on a winning strategy.

Healthy Recipes – Asparagus with Mushroom and Hazelnuts

Serves 4


  • 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • sea salt to taste
  • fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 bunches asparagus, ends trimmed
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 500g mushrooms
  • 8 spring onions, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp chopped roasted hazelnuts


  1. Heat oil in a wok over high heat. Add spring onion and garlic, and cook, stirring regularly, for 2 minutes. Add chilli flakes and cook for 2 minutes. Fold in the tamarind paste, prawns and soy sauce, and cook until prawns are just cooked through. Remove from the wok and keep warm.
  2. Crack eggs into a small bowl and whisk thoroughly. Pour eggs into the wok and swirl around until they set. Remove to a plate and cut into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Combine the lime juice, chilli, spring onions, sprouts, and chives, and pour over the prawn mixture.
  4. Divide the salad mix between four plates and top each with the prawn mixture. Top with the coriander leaves, chopped egg, and cashews.


How many minutes?

Popular fast foods, snacks and drinks may be very tempting but give some thought to the number of minutes of exercise you will need to set aside, on top of your normal exercise, to burn off the extra energy they provide. Even a very small ‘treat’ can have a negative impact on your weight loss success.

Question: How many extra hours/minutes of activity does it take to burn off a small (147g) Love Lindor Gift Box?

Strenuous Aerobics: 2 hours & 31 minutes
Social Golf: 3 hours & 47 minutes
Energetic Dancing: 3 hours & 2 minutes
Jogging 8 kph: 2 hours and 31 minutes
Swimming: 3 hours & 2 minutes
Walking: 3 hours & 47 minutes