Kerry Fleckenstein, Therapeutic Lifestyle Recovery Coach
9:43 am

Healthy Habits start now!

A diet is not just about eating less calories.  A diet should be about changing your lifestyle into one that is healthier and something that can be maintained for energy, happiness and health.  In today’s world, with all that can be bought and all you are bombarded with at the grocery store, the TV ads, the products and medications to fix them, it is no wonder there is so much confusion about what to eat, how to eat, what is healthy.  I know it is hard to change, but it is harder to spend that last 20 or more years of your life on medication, facing diabetes and medications, or not being able to live the quality of life you pictured.

People who are overweight or obese are more likely to develop heart disease and stroke, even if they have no other risk factors. Obesity is unhealthy because excess weight puts more strain on your heart. It can raise blood pressure and blood cholesterol. Losing weight is one of the best ways to reduce your risk of heart problems and other diseases.  

It’s easy to start a diet. Staying on one is harder! Prepare yourself by setting goals, thinking ahead to roadblocks along the way, and deciding how to deal them.

It’s never wise to follow fad diets, go without eating, or try to lose weight too fast. Think about your eating habits. It may be helpful to pick a certain room in the house and not eat anywhere else. Decide how to handle temptation. When you’re offered high-calorie foods, turn them down nicely, but firmly. Try to eat out at places where there are low-calorie foods to choose from.

Plan ahead. If a bad mood, stress or boredom makes you want to eat a lot, decide in advance what action to take. You could take up a new hobby, go for a walk, call a friend or read a book.

Be realistic and expect setbacks. If you go off your diet, don’t quit and don’t get mad at yourself. Just get back on track.  The best I have for you today…..  Pick up and keep going.  Everyone has a bad day, falls off the wagon, and makes an unhealthy decision.  So what.  Just pick up where you left off.  

YOU CAN DO THIS!!  Join a level today!


Kerry Fleckenstein, Therapeutic Lifestyle Recovery Coach
11:48 am

Eat your best anti-inflammatories!

Omega-3 fats:  found in fatty fish like wild Alaskan salmon help fight inflammation throughout your body. It’s particularly important for brain health and metabolism.

Dark leafy greens:  such as kale, spinach, Escarole, and Romaine lettuce contain powerful antioxidants and vitamin C which help protect against cellular damage. Try to opt for organic as much as possible to avoid toxins.  Feel free to juice, make smoothies, or blend into a drink for a delicious, easy way to get greens into your diet.

Blueberries:   rate very high in antioxidant capacity compared to other fruits and vegetables. They are also lower in sugar than many other fruits.  This is a great thing to add into those smoothies!!

Probiotics and fermented foods:  Your gut flora is important for a well-functioning immune system, and helps ward off chronic inflammation.  Most inflammatory diseases start in your gut, as the result of an imbalance in bacteria.  Fermented foods such as kefir, miso, tempeh, pickles, sauerkraut, olives, and other fermented vegetables, will help load your gut with beneficial bacteria.  Fermented foods help to get rid of toxins as well.

Shiitake mushrooms:   contain strong compounds that help fight inflammation, which inhibits oxidative stress. Because of this they fight heart disease and cancer as well.

Garlic:  has been used as medicine for centuries. It’s also one of the most heavily researched plant foods around. Over 170 studies show it benefitting more than 150 different conditions. It’s anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal, and has antioxidant properties.  This stems from its Sulphur properties.

Spices that help in inflammation and can be used in food, tea, smoothies etc. are:


Favorite new recipe!!  Tumeric Tea. 

Brew tea, add ginger, honey, milk/almond milk/tumeric, ginger, and cardamon or cinnamon.

Kerry Fleckenstein, Therapeutic Lifestyle Recovery Coach
9:15 am

The spirituality and stress Connection. Are you connected?

the path less traveled by exploring your spirituality can lead to a clearer life purpose, better personal relationships and enhanced stress management skills - The Mayo Clinic

There is a misconception sometimes that spirituality is connected to one specific belief system or religious affiliation. This doesn’t have to be true. Spirituality gives our lives more context. A connection to yourself, others, a connection to the universe and in what some circles is called “a higher power.”   A meaning to life outside of your family circle, your work obligations and all the minutia of daily life.

Why is this so good for you?

  • It helps you have a bigger sense of purpose. - It helps give you clarity to what is most
  • Meaningful to you in your life.
  • You get a world connection – If you are alone you will feel a bigger sense of peace knowing you Are a part of a bigger whole
  • Release your sense of control – you are able to be more accepting and realize you are not responsible for everything that happens. Only what you can control.

How can you connect to your spirituality? 

Staying connected to your inner spirit and the lives of those around you can enhance your quality of life, both mentally and physically. Your personal concept of spirituality may change with your age and life experiences, but it always forms the basis of your well-being, helps you cope with stressors large and small, and affirms your purpose in life.

  • Look at your community
  • Look at your most important relationships, the ones that give you joy;
  • What gives you hope?

When you start thinking about the answers to these questions, you can start understanding your faith and begin or continue your search for spirituality.

Kerry Fleckenstein, Therapeutic Lifestyle Recovery Coach
9:15 am

Do you even know what stress looks like?

In today’s world everyone is connected to technology. We all walk around with cell phones, have computers, iPad, tablets, watches…   What does that mean? It means we are always “turned on.”

You know that feeling during a power outage when the house goes silent? You never really heard the background noise of a house turned on, did you? The refrigerator, electricity, and many other things. Only when it became truly silent did you see the difference.

Stress is like that. So is the toll it is taking on your physical being. Are you carrying around extra weight but eat healthy? Stress. Are you feeling anxiety but just think you are super busy? Stress. We don’t always recognize the signs. However maybe you are at the point where you have been told you are on the threshold of chronic illness? You need to lose weight or you have unexplained aches? These are the signs that your body and your LIFE are telling you something.

Some signs:

  1. Bizarre or recurring dreams
  2. Jaw and or tooth pain (I experienced that for 2 years!)
  3. Hair loss
  4. Stomach aches or digestive distress
  5. Acne
  6. Always sick
  7. Itchy skin, rashes, hives (yup had that too)
  8. Abdominal fat

These symptoms can and HAVE to be controlled. 85% of all chronic illness generally has an undercurrent associated with stress. Because stress causes inflammation. The hormone cortisol is produced during stressful situations. When those situations have no end but continue in daily life, your body stops coping. Obesity, heart disease, depression….they will occur.

Why live life as a time bomb? Peace, joy and happiness is around the corner. That silent feeling of a house without a hum can be your body working at its optimum. Your mind and your body are one. Treat them that way. Lifestyle change is hard, but illness is harder.

Kerry Fleckenstein, Therapeutic Lifestyle Recovery Coach
9:15 am

9 Traits of Genuinely Happy People


1. Love Themselves

I mean this in the sense that they are comfortable in your own skin. They accept and embrace your character, your mind and your body, not needing others approval. They make the best of everything.

2. See relationships as a part of, the whole of life

Relationships are a wonderful part of life. All kinds… parental, romantic, friendship, work. However, they cannot dictate happiness. To be dependent on a relationship to keep you happy leaves a void if something goes wrong with the relationship. Genuinely happy people are self-content and then embrace relationships as an extension to their happiness

3. Embrace Change

Life, if you don’t know by now, is inconsistent, undependable and always changing. Truly happy people (and let’s clarify here, not happy every minute of every day, but generally happy inside) are open to change, they truly listen to suggestions, respect and consider all opinions, and take criticism constructively rather than offensively.

4. Are happy for others without comparisons or jealousy

Jealousy is a dangerous emotion that causes unnecessary stress. Happy people usually see and use the accomplishments of others as motivation to achieve the same thing rather than harbor resentment. We have all been there. Life gives some people more than their fair share of hell while other seem to sail through without many scratches. Oh well…. It is what is. Use it. Get what you want instead of wishing you had what they did.  

5. Is not a victim

We’ve all been the so-called “victim.” You can be victimized by a boss, a relationship, a family situation, a crime or a serious abusive situation. It happens. Instead of dwelling on the terrible thing that happened, truly happy people tend to accept it and use it to get stronger. When people say, “Wow I don’t know how you made it” I say that I learned good lessons. I choose to look at what life brought me and turn it into a new beginning rather than a terrible loss.

6. Lives in the moment. Is Present

The past is gone and the future is not here yet. Happy people tend to realize that. Not only that, they tend to use that knowledge as motivation to make the most of each and every moment. In addition to being motivating, presence can also come in handy for truly appreciating those moments of relaxation, allowing yourself to be truly in them rather than distracted by future concerns. You don’t get where you’re going looking behind you and you won’t get there any faster than you can handle. Enjoy and accept the journey.

7. Believes Everything Happens For A Reason

This can very easily be paired with the choice to not be a victim, but happy people tend to trust the process and existence of everything in their life. They know that nothing is ever too big to handle and choose to embrace what life is currently throwing at them rather than cowering at the sight of it.

8. Understands it’s not always about the money

We all need money and need to make it. There is now running away from that. However there are choices that differentiate what we need and what we want. To make every decision in life based on money is a losing proposition. Is uncreative. A little risk might bring a great reward. For happy people money is not the ultimate dictator.

9. Look Within For Solutions

Genuinely happy people understand that change comes from the inside out. Whether you want to change your diet, your body, your mind, or your life the decisions come from within. There is no outside source to your thoughts or your happiness. If you want to lose weight, you have to understand why you gained it. If you are too stressed, ask yourself what can be different. Why is this in your life? Why is he/she in your life, why do you keep an unsatisfying job?

You have all the answers, you own the key to your happiness, peace and joy. Sometimes you just need help turning the key….

Kerry Fleckenstein, Therapeutic Lifestyle Recovery Coach
9:04 am

4 Best foods for Auto-immune Disease

1. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Auto-immune disease is made more uncomfortable when your diet included many processed foods.  Substituting Extra Virgin Olive Oil is easier to digest than many shortenings, processed fats, and especially margarine.  Heck I take a shot of it a day!  I always joked with my kids about the olive oil brownies they were eating.  But seriously, delicious.  Try substituting it in one thing at a time.  Try it on a savory oatmeal.

2. Fresh Vegetables

Fresh vegetables are essential to include in your diet if you suffer from autoimmune disease. It’s important to maintain your health and nutrient level.  If you experience digestive distress try eating a lot of veggies, try them cooked.  Steamed.  You maintain the integrity of the veggie and the fiber but some of the breakdown has already happened for you.  Broccoli is super-food.  Try organic veggies as much as possible.  This limits your intake of extra toxins.

3. Whole Grains

Just as you should avoid processed fats and shortenings, you should also avoid processed carbohydrates. Instead of opting for heavily refined and processed sugars or flour, select whole grain alternatives. Locally made fresh bread is a good choice over standard loaves of bread that you can buy in the grocery store. Opt for natural sugar sources instead of refined sugar; maple syrup, molasses and honey make excellent sweeteners as alternatives to regular white sugar.  Try Oatmeal with any of the aforementioned sweeteners.  The key is to have as few ingredients as possible, especially in your grain foods.  How about Brown rice pasta?  As a general rule of thumb, go gluten free at least at first.

4. Easy to Digest Dairy

Although dairy is a potentially dangerous item to include in your diet if you suffer from autoimmune disease, it's still an important element of your diet. Choose dairy that is easier to digest, like eggs and yogurt. Kefir is a great option.  Try it plain, with honey, or in a smoothie.  Opt for low fat versions to reduce the stress on your body and to eliminate the opportunity for autoimmune episodes to develop. 
Remember.... eat as few ingredients as possible to start eliminating symptoms.