Recommended Reading and Book Review for our Readers!

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The Carb Lovers Diet

Pasta (bad). Bread (off-limits). Potatoes (napalm for my waistline). Pizza (not in this lifetime). If this sounds a lot like the nagging voice inside your head when you imagine your favorite foods, you’ve been doing yourself—and your waistline—a huge disservice. That’s why you must read the first-ever diet book from Health, the leading authority on healthy living: THE CARBLOVERS DIET (Oxmoor House; August 2010; Hardcover; $24.95; ISBN 978-0-8487-3370-4).
For decades the diet industry has said that your favorite foods make you fat, bloated, and sluggish. You followed their advice. Then you gained weight, felt deprived—and blamed yourself. It’s not your fault. Millions of other people jumped on the low-carb bandwagon too, and we as a nation got FATTER than ever before!

This book reveals the hidden truth—well known to weight-loss scientists—that eating carbs is the only proven way to get and stay thin. Moreover, hundreds of new studies show that a breakthrough ingredient called Resistant Starch, found exclusively in carb-filled foods, has the power to turn off your appetite, turn on your metabolism, and improve your health and mood!


About Health:

Health ( is America’s most-trusted health-and-wellness magazine, giving women credible, useful, and up-to-date information and inspiration on how to live healthier, happier lives. Health covers well-being, fitness, nutrition, and beauty with intelligence and flair, showing that healthy living isn’t just important — it’s fun, too. The magazine is published 10 times a year, reaching nearly 8 million readers with each issue.


Spice Up Your Treadmill Workout
By Minna Lessig

Author of Tank Top Arms,
Bikini Belly, Boy Shorts Bottom

Like many folks, I do my cardio on a treadmill. But because the pounding of running makes my back hurt and tightens my hips, I created this 30-minute treadmill routine. Now, I'm passing it on to you. Some of the moves can be tricky at first, but that's a good thing, especially if your current treadmill workout feels a bit stale. As you learn this routine, feel free to walk, jog, or run instead of doing any of the moves.

Minutes 1 to 5: Warmup with Upper Body Moves

  • Warmup. Holding the rails or handles of your treadmill with both hands, round your upper back for a few steps. Straighten up, then lift your chest toward the ceiling for a few steps. Repeat 3 to 5 times.
  • Single-Arm Reaches. Keeping one hand on the rail or bar, extend your other arm straight over your head as you walk. Lower it, then repeat with your other arm. Try to reach higher with each rep. Do 10 to 20 alternating reaches.
  • Bend Down Low. Walk briskly for 10 to 20 steps. Then bend your knees slightly and walk in this fashion at the same pace for 10 to 20 steps, keeping your upper body upright. Alternate between brisk walking and bent-knee walking. Repeat 3 to 5 times.

Minutes 6 to 25: Speed Up and Change Up

  • Minutes 6 to 8. Fitness walk: Increase your pace to a level 4 or 5 RPE (see page 11 for the RPE scale). Walk briskly.
  • Minutes 9 to 10. Step-step-sashay: Step forward with your right foot, then your left foot. Then sashay: Step forward again with your right foot and hop to bring your left foot to meet your right, landing first on your left foot and then your right foot. Immediately step forward with your left foot and hop to bring your right foot to meet your left, landing first on your right foot, then your left foot. Continue to alternate sashays after each two regular steps forward. Before you try sashays on the treadmill, be sure you can do them on the floor or other nonmoving surface!
  • Minutes 11 to 14. Step-togethers: Think of this move as walking sideways in a straight line. Raise the incline to 3.0 (Novice) -- 6.0 (Master). Novice: Reduce the treadmill's speed to 1.8-2.0 mph. Skilled: Reduce the treadmill's speed to 2.0-2.5 mph. Master: Set the speed as you see fit. Hold the rail or bar with your left hand and turn your body to the right, so that your left shoulder is closest to the bar and your body is a quarter turn to the right. Leading with your left foot, step to the side and then bring your right foot to meet your left. Do step-togethers on one side for minutes 11 and 12, walk forward briskly for a few seconds, then switch to the other side for the remainder of minutes 13 and 14. Advanced exercisers can try hopping together instead of stepping together.
  • Minutes 15 to 18. Keep the treadmill set at a 3.0-6.0 incline. Side-squat walking: Facing a quarter turn to the right on the treadmill, place your hands on your thighs, bend your knees, and lower yourself into a step-together. Hold a half-squat position as you walk sideways with your left foot leading. Do side-squat walking leading with the left foot for minutes 15 and 16, walk forward briskly for a few seconds, then switch to the other side for the remainder of minutes 17 and 18.
  • Minutes 19 to 21. Depending on your fitness level, keep the incline up or reduce it. Walk briskly as you hold your arms straight over your head. For less of a challenge, place your hands behind your head. This less-difficult variation still forces your core to work harder and makes a nice little abs workout.
  • Minutes 22 to 24. Incline walking: In accordance with your fitness level, walk, jog, or run on an incline of 3, 4, or 5 to work your glutes and hamstrings.
  • Minute 25. Novice: Lower the incline and perform one last blast of fitness walking. Skilled and Master: Keep an incline, but reduce the treadmill's speed (to 1.8-2.5 mph for Novice and Skilled levels and up to 3.0 mph for Master). Holding the bars or rails, carefully turn 180 degrees so that your back is to the rail or bar and you are walking "backward." Hold on to the rail or bars as you walk backward -- you'll feel a burn in the front of your thighs. Carefully turn until you're facing forward.

Minutes 26 to 20: Cooldown

  • Repeat the Warmup. Reduce the treadmill's incline. Slow your pace even more until you are walking very slowly. Shake one leg, step, step, shake the other leg, step, step. Repeat until you've shaken each leg 10 to 20 times.
  • Take Two Deep Breaths. Extend both arms over your head on the inhalation and lower them on the exhalation. 

Reprinted from: Tank Top Arms, Bikini Belly, Boy Shorts Bottom: Tighten and Tone Your Body in as Little as 10 Minutes a Day by Minna Lessig © 2007 by Rodale Inc. (April 2007;$18.95US/$22.95CAN; 978-1-59486-562-6) Permission granted by Rodale, Inc., Emmaus, PA 18098. Available wherever books are sold or directly from the publisher by calling at (800) 848-4735.

Minna Lessig is a sought-after personal trainer and an internationally recognized fitness supermodel who has been featured on the covers and inside such magazines as Muscle and Fitness, Fit, and Women's Fitness International. The star and creator of numerous best-selling workout videos, she lives in Virginia Beach.

For more information, please visit


Boosting Metabolism
By Joy Bauer, MS, RD, CDN with Carol Svec

Authors of
Joy Bauer's Food Cures

Clients -- and just about everyone I meet who learns I'm a nutritionist -- ask me this question all the time: How can I boost my metabolism?

Metabolism is simply the total of all body processes that burn calories -- your basal metabolic rate plus your activity factor. When it comes to improving your metabolism, there's good news and bad news.

First the bad news: Most of what controls your metabolism isn't under your control. Some people are genetically blessed with a high-burning metabolism. They didn't ask for it, they were born with it. (So don't hate them for it, unless, of course, they rub it in!) On average, men have a metabolism that is 10 to 15 percent higher than women's, mainly because of their larger size and greater muscle mass. Whether you're a man or a woman, your metabolism naturally decreases with age. Scientists have estimated that metabolism slows about 5 percent per decade, beginning at age 40, as we lose muscle mass and increase body fat. Hypothyroidism (under-active thyroid) lowers metabolism and causes weight gain. Fortunately in this case, if a blood test confirms there's a problem, your doctor will prescribe medication that can boost it back up to baseline.

Now the good news: Your metabolism doesn't have to remain stagnant or take a nosedive. You can burn more calories, lose more weight, just by changing the way you think about eating and moving.

Food Fixes for Metabolism
Remember -- our basal metabolic rate includes the energy we need for body processes, including digestion. About 10 percent of our calories are used to process the food we eat. As the calories are burned, our bodies generate heat. This phenomenon, known as the thermic effect of food, is influenced by how much, how often, and what we eat. In addition, food can directly affect metabolism by altering the way the body functions (which changes the amount of energy it needs). Here are my best recommendations for maximizing metabolism:

  • Eat at least 1,000 calories per day. Although it is generally true that eating a low-calorie diet will help you take off weight, if you eat too few calories, your metabolism will get slower and slower as it tries to conserve energy. As your metabolism crashes, the weight you take off will most likely creep back on over time. Plus, you'll be more likely to binge on junk food if you reduce your calories by too much.
  • Eat every four to five hours. A regular meal schedule helps keep your body working to digest and absorb foods. Between breakfast and bed, aim to eat a meal or snack every four to five hours. And try to eat breakfast within 90 minutes of rising. People who regularly eat a 
    healthy breakfast are more likely to control their weight. If you wait to eat until you're really ravenous, you're more likely to overeat later in the day. Also breakfast helps fire up your metabolism after a full night on a slow simmer.
  • Eat protein with every meal. All foods contribute to the thermic effect, which means that all foods -- carbohydrates, fats, and proteins -- help to give metabolism a gentle nudge higher when we eat them. But protein has the greatest thermic effect of all. In addition, protein can increase metabolism by helping to maintain and build muscle mass.

Exercise Fixes for Metabolism
A big percentage of your maintenance calories -- the amount you burn in the course of a clay -- comes from your activity level. If you go from having average activity levels to being extremely active, you can double the amount of calories burned (that's activity factor calories, not BMR calories). This is why any activity -- every extra step you take -- can help boost your metabolism. Part of my recommendation is to move as much as possible: climb the stairs instead of taking the escalator, park at the opposite end of the mall and walk to your favorite store, garden instead of watching TV . . . anything, as long as it is movement.

In addition, I strongly encourage everyone to exercise regularly. The optimal weight-loss exercise program consists of both aerobic exercise and strength training. Regular exercise can increase your activity factor and your metabolism. As you get older and your metabolism slows, you can rebalance your energy needs by increasing the duration or intensity of your workouts.

  • Aerobic exercise. Aerobic exercises use energy and increase many different metabolic processes (such as your heart rate), all of which burn calories. All aerobic activities -- including running, brisk walking, swimming, skating, skiing, and cycling -- increase metabolism while you're exercising, and also keep your metabolism burning higher for hours afterward. I recommend doing some form of aerobic activity four or five days per week, for at least 30 minutes per day.
  • Strength training. Exercises that work your muscles without necessarily raising heart rate are considered strength training. These include lifting weights, working with resistance bands, yoga, Pilates, circuit training, and calisthenics (including push-ups, chin-ups, and abdominal crunches). These activities directly increase your BMR by building muscle, so you will burn more calories every minute of every day. I recommend doing some form of strength training two or three days per week. Plan a strength training regimen that's realistic for both your schedule and personality. For some people that may mean 15 minutes of calisthenics in the privacy of your bedroom, and for others it may involve a more elaborate weight-training regimen at the gym.

Reprinted from: Joy Bauer's Food Cures: Treat Common Health Concerns, Look Younger & Live Longer by Joy Bauer, MS, RD, CDN with Carol Svec. Copyright © 2007 Joy Bauer, MS, RD, CDN. (Published by Rodale; April 2007;$18.95US/$22.95CAN; 978-1-59486-466-7) Permission granted by Rodale, Inc., Emmaus, PA 18098. Available wherever books are sold or directly from the publisher by calling at (800) 848-4735.

Joy Bauer, MS, RD, CDN
, is the nutrition expert for the Today show and, and monthly weight-loss columnist for SELF magazine. She has built one of the largest nutrition centers in the country, with offices in Manhattan and Westchester County, New York. Her clientele includes high-profile professionals, celebrities, Olympic gold medalists, and the New York City Ballet. The author of several best-selling books, she lives in New York.

For more information, please visit

True Stories of False Memories
By Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson, authors of Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me)

False memories allow us to forgive ourselves and justify our mistakes, but sometimes at a high price: an inability to take responsibility for our lives. An appreciation of the distortions of memory, a realization that even deeply felt memories might be wrong, might encourage people to hold their memories more lightly, to drop the certainty that their memories are always accurate, and to let go of the appealing impulse to use the past to justify problems of the present. If we are to be careful about what we wish for because it might come true, we must also be careful which memories we select to justify our lives, because then we will have to live by them.

Certainly one of the most powerful stories that many people wish to live by is the victim narrative. Nobody has actually been abducted by aliens (though experiencers will argue fiercely with us), but millions have survived cruelties as children: neglect, sexual abuse, parental alcoholism, violence, abandonment, the horrors of war. Many people have come forward to tell their stories: how they coped, how they endured, what they learned, how they moved on. Stories of trauma and transcendence are inspiring examples of an resilience.

It is precisely because these accounts are so emotionally powerful that thousands of people have been drawn to construct "me, too" versions of them. A few have claimed to be Holocaust survivors; thousands have claimed to be survivors of alien abduction; and tens of thousands have claimed to be survivors of incest and other sexual traumas that allegedly were repressed from memory until they entered therapy in adulthood. Why would people claim to remember that they had suffered harrowing experiences if they hadn't, especially when that belief causes rifts with families or friends? By distorting their memories, these people can "get what they want by revising what they had," and what they want is to turn their present lives, no matter how bleak or mundane, into a dazzling victory over adversity. Memories of abuse also help them resolve the dissonance between "I am a smart, capable person" and "My life sure is a mess right now" with an explanation that makes them feel good and removes responsibility: "It's not my fault my life is a mess. Look at the horrible things they did to me." Ellen Bass and Laura Davis made this reasoning explicit in The Courage to Heal. They tell readers who have no memory of childhood sexual abuse that "when you first remember your abuse or acknowledge its effects, you may feel tremendous relief. Finally there is a reason for your problems. There is someone, and something, to blame."

It is no wonder, then, that most of the people who have created false memories of early suffering, like those who believe they were abducted by aliens, go to great lengths to justify and preserve their new explanations. Consider the story of a young woman named Holly Ramona, who, after a year in college, went into therapy for treatment of depression and bulimia. The therapist told her that these common problems were usually symptoms of child sexual abuse, which Holly denied had ever happened to her. Yet over time, at the urging of the therapist and then at the hands of a psychiatrist who administered sodium amytal (popularly and mistakenly called "truth serum"), Holly came to remember that between the ages of five and sixteen she had been repeatedly raped by her father, who even forced her to have sex with the family dog. Holly's outraged father sued both therapists for malpractice, for "implanting or reinforcing false memories that [he] had molested her as a child." The jury agreed, exonerating the father and finding the therapists guilty.

This ruling put Holly in a state of dissonance that she could resolve in one of two ways: She could accept the verdict, realize that her memories were false, beg her father's forgiveness, and attempt to reconcile the family that had been torn apart over her accusations. Or she could reject the verdict as a travesty of justice, become more convinced than ever that her father had abused her, and renew her commitment to recovered-memory therapy. By far, the latter was the easier choice because of her need to justify the harm she had caused father and the rest of her family. To change her mind now would have been like turning a steamship around in a narrow river -- not much room to maneuver and hazards in every direction; much easier to stay the course. Indeed, Holly Ramona not only vehemently rejected the verdict; she bolstered that decision by going to graduate school to become a psychotherapist. The last we heard, she was encouraging some of her own clients to recover memories of their childhood sexual abuse.

Yet every once in a while someone steps forward to speak up for truth, even when the truth gets in the way of a good, self-justifying story. It's not easy, because it means taking a fresh, skeptical look at the comforting memory we have lived by, scrutinizing it from every angle for its plausibility, and, no matter how great the ensuing dissonance, letting go of it. For her entire adult life, for example, writer Mary Karr had harbored the memory of how, as an innocent teenager, she had been abandoned by her father. That memory allowed her to feel like a heroic survivor of her father's neglect. But when she sat down to write her memoirs, she faced the realization that the story could not have been true.

Copyright © 2007 by Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson from Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me); Published by Harcourt, Inc. May 2007; $25.00US; 978-0-15-101098-1

Carol Tavris is a social psychologist, lecturer, and writer whose books include Anger and The Mismeasure of Woman. She has written on psychological topics for the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, Scientific American, and many other publications. She is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science, and a member of the editorial board of Psychological Science in the Public Interest. She lives in Los Angeles.

Elliot Aronson is one of the most distinguished social psychologists in the world. His books include The Social Animal and The Jigsaw Classroom. Chosen by his peers as one of the 100 most influential psychologists of the twentieth century, he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and is the only psychologist to have won all three of the American Psychological Association's top awards -- for writing, teaching, and research. He lives in Santa Cruz, California.



The following is an excerpt from the book On Becoming Fearless 
by Arianna Huffington
Published by Little, Brown and Company; April 2007;$12.99US/$16.50CAN; 978-0-316-16682-9
Copyright © 2007 Arianna Huffington


On Becoming a Fearless Mother

Motherhood brings out reserves of courage we never knew we had. Huffington Post commenter Deborah Daniels Wood writes: "Being a mom is probably the one thing that will make most women fearless. We would gladly step in front of a speeding train, a bullet, a raging mad dog, whatever it was that was threatening our children."

That's how I got through Isabella's eating issues. What helped me at the time, and has always helped me in dealing with my fears, is that I have to be fearless for them, because there is nothing that strikes fear in a child's heart faster than a fearful parent. Knowing that you have to at least appear fearless for your children -- to convey the assurance that everything is going to be all right -- can have the effect of actually making you fearless.

Huffington Post reader Lia Hadley sent me an e-mail about a trip she took to London with her then nine-year-old daughter: "When we arrived at the airport, it was late in the evening, and we had to take a long train ride into the center of the city. As we were waiting for the train (with not another child in sight), my daughter began to cry because it was all so strange, there were so many people, and it was dark and way past her bedtime. Trying to show her that she didn't have to worry because, hey, she was with her mom and a world traveler to boot, we had a discussion, which at least calmed her to the point that she stopped crying. By the end of the journey (five days later), she had had such a good time that she said she wanted to move to London when she grew up."

Some time later, Lia asked her daughter what had changed the London adventure from being scary to being fun. "I think," she said, "it was because I realized that despite the fact that you got lost all the time, we always managed to get to where we wanted to go. You would ask all sorts of strangers for directions, and the people were so friendly and so helpful, and we had such interesting conversations, that I realized being lost can be a lot of fun."

When I look back at my own childhood, my mother looms large as a teacher of fearlessness. Some of the ways she taught fearlessness to my sister and me were more eccentric than others.

One night when my sister and I were in our teens, we were on our way to see Chekhov's Three Sisters. We walked out of the house, closing the door behind us. My mother immediately realized that she'd forgotten her purse inside -- the purse containing not only the tickets to the show and her money but the key to the house. Any normal person would probably have rearranged the night's priorities, canceling the theater and getting a locksmith to open the door.

Not my mother. She didn't blink an eye. She went to the superintendent's apartment, knocked on the door, and asked him for some cash. We all climbed into a taxi, and when we arrived at the theater, she went up to the box office and explained what had happened.

They had us wait until everyone had been seated, and then they gave us three empty seats. My sister, Agapi, and I kept asking how we were going to get back into the house, to which my mother would say, "Don't think about it, just enjoy the play [which we did, by the way], and it will all work out."

It so happened that our apartment in Athens was on the third floor, opposite the fire station. My mother had a plan. When we got home, she went over to the firehouse and, in her charming way, asked the firemen if they could please bring a ladder over to a window of our apartment. Which they did. In short order, the window was open and we were in the house. Of course, my mother then served them soup, and we all had a great time!

I remember that night whenever I'm faced with canceled flights, lost wallets, and plans gone awry. My mother was a master at not ever panicking and trusting life to always give her solutions. She preferred to live in the moment -- even if that moment was one in which she was not in possession of the keys to her apartment -- with the assurance that it would all work out. The ability to trust is an amazing quality, and it was deep in her DNA. That trust and lack of fear paid her back well, keeping her open and receptive to solutions.

For Diane von Furstenberg, the most powerful lessons in fearlessness also came from her mother. Diane took the fashion industry by storm in the seventies when she designed a little wrap dress that launched a billion-dollar business. Thirty years and many ventures later, she still credits her mother. "My mother," she told me, "always said that fear is not an option. When I was eight years old she put me on a train from Brussels to Paris on my own. I was very afraid, but I was also proud to arrive safely at my destination. My mother was a Holocaust survivor, and when she was freed from the concentration camp by the Russians in 1945, she weighed forty-nine pounds. It took me a very long time to realize the enormity of what she had been through and of my heritage -- and the way she had been able to turn such pain into something positive. I grew up with a legacy that life is a miracle and that I'm the daughter of a survivor, not a victim. So when I'm in pain or in fear, I look through it for the light and the fearlessness."

When there are dead ends there are also U-turns, and if we don't panic, bridges can appear -- we just need to trust that there is a way. And there is always a way. That knowledge is a gift of fearlessness we can model for our kids.

Not All Fears are Created Equal

If courage is the knowledge of what is not to be feared, there is nothing like becoming a mother to help us prioritize and recognize how trivial many of our fears are compared to what really matters.

Janet Grillo, a writer-producer living in Los Angeles whose son has autism, told me: "The biggest fear a mother has is that her child will become damaged. That the perfect wonder of her baby will be undone somehow. That she will turn her head just at the moment he slips. That the spill of scalding coffee, the outturned handle of a pot, the stray pill, will find her child. I don't know if the vaccines I insisted upon, as a responsible parent following responsible medical advice, caused him harm. Or if the antibiotics prescribed to fight off strep did him in. Or if the toxins in the air and water that pervade everything we eat and breathe crescendoed, after generations, to a breaking point. Or if it was none of this, but maybe my son's genetic destiny, a ticking clock that would strike when he turned two no matter what I did or did not do. Or perhaps my fear itself called it forth, as some sort of extraordinary response from an unkind God.

"What I do know is that when my alert, engaged, charming, and vivacious son turned two, he began, hour by hour, day by day, to drift away. As if by helium, he lifted away from us, from our family, from our world, and inward toward a remote and private place."

It was the hardest and most frightening thing Janet and her husband, film director David O. Russell, had ever faced. But, Janet told me, "Ultimately, faith and fear could not coexist. One had to eventually prevail out of this eternal pull. I simply did not have the luxury to feel fear. Fear had become, in the face of my child's immediate need, an indulgence. He was here and autism was engulfing him, and I could either reach beyond myself and into the fog that gripped him and pull him out or I could continue fearing that I would lose him. Fear had to fall by the wayside. And faith is what emerged in the tiny triumphs of his returned gaze."

Children clearly help us tap into this faith, the source of the life force that vaporizes fears. They help us see the world in a more trusting way and discover a love we did not know was possible. 

Copyright © 2007 Arianna Huffington

Arianna Huffington has written eleven widely praised books, appeared on numerous television and radio shows, and founded the Huffington Post, an enormously successful online source of news and opinion. In 2006 she was chosen as one of Time magazine's "100 Most Influential People in the World." She wrote this book for her two daughters, in the hope that they will lead fearless lives.


The Sneaky Chef
Simple Strategies for Hiding Healthy Foods in Kids' Favorite Meals

By Missy Chase Lapine
Published by Running Press
April 2007;$17.95US/$21.50CAN; 978-0-7624-3075-8


If you think your kids will never eat anything healthy -- think again!

Learn how to make the meals your children already love -- but with secret sneaky ingredients that pack a healthy punch. Your kids will never suspect that there's blueberries pureed into their brownies, cauliflower in their mac 'n' cheese, or sweet potatoes in their lasagna -- but they'll love every bite! Here are simple, practical recipes and techniques that will help every busy parent create healthy meals for the whole family.

"Sneaky" recipes include:
Masterful Mac 'n' Cheese · Power Pizza · Incognito Burritos · Hi-Fi Fish Sticks
Guerilla Grilled Cheese · Brainy Brownies
5-minute quick fixes for Jello® and other kid-popular mixes
And much more!

Missy Chase Lapine is the former publisher of Eating Well magazine and the founder of the natural baby product line Baby Spa®. A mother of two daughters, she started experimenting in both her professional and family kitchen to create The Sneaky Chef recipes. She is on the Culinary Arts faculty of The New School, in New York City, and also offers Sneaky Chef workshops, cooking classes, and coaching to teach families how to eat healthier. Lapine lives with her family in Westchester, New York.


For more information, please visit


Edging Into Exercise
By Martha Beck, PhD

Author of The Four Day Win

One of my all-time favorite clients was a professional baseball player I’ll call Dan, who was making the transition from athletics to civilian life. Dan was an impressive specimen in every way: smart, funny, energetic, and incredibly fit. At the time he consulted me, I was doing a lot of my usual traveling and public speaking. Between my erratic scheduling, sleep loss, lack of access to healthy food, and adrenal burnout, I’d gained several pounds and fallen off all the various wagons of healthy eating and exercise habits. I kept meaning to cut back on the flan and get back to regular exercise, but I never seemed to find the time or energy. Then one day, when we were talking about his baseball career, Dan tossed out an offhand comment that would change my muscle tone forever.

“Ninety percent of being in shape,” he said, “is getting to the gym.”

For me it was, as Oprah might say, a lightbulb moment. Right then and there, I decided that I would re-establish a pattern of going to the gym -- not doing anything at the gym, just getting there. So the next day, I dropped off my kids at school and drove directly to the gym, where I parked my car, listened to a song on my favorite radio station, started the car again, and went home. The next day I did the same thing . . . and the next . . . and the next.

By the 4th day, my new daymap pattern came very easily -- my brain and body expected to drive to the gym after taking the kids to school. Then I knew I could safely up the ante -- a little. For the next 4 days, after arriving at the gym, I went in and pedaled a stationary bike for approximately 3 minutes, just long enough to listen to another favorite song on my MP3 player. My next 4-day win consisted of increasing my pedaling sessions to 7 minutes (two songs). When that felt habitual, I added one round of circuit training with light weight to my cycling routine (I bought a few new tunes from the Internet as a reward).

After the third 4-day win, something rather dramatic happened. I’d been increasing my workout by tiny increments, but suddenly, my body took over and decided it loved the gym. I no longer needed a reward for showing up and exercising; in fact, I felt edgy and disappointed if I didn’t get a chance to lift weights (please remember, I’d previously chosen this form of exercise because I find it inherently enjoyable). Despite the chaos of my schedule, my sometimes-crippling autoimmune disease, and my utter athletic ineptitude, I’m now something of a gym rat.

Whatever your preferred exercise, you can increase your own activity to healthy levels by using a similar 4-day win strategy. As your very first action on your 4-day win exercise program, I’d like you to modify your daymap so that you show up in an appropriate place to exercise, at approximately the same time, for 4 consecutive days. What exercise you choose to do is less important than your arrival at the designated location.

Reprinted from: The Four Day Win: End Your Diet War and Achieve Thinner Peace by Martha Beck, PhD. Copyright © 2007 Martha Beck. (January 2007;$25.95US/$33.95CAN; 9781594866074) Permission granted by Rodale, Inc., Emmaus, PA 18098. Available wherever books are sold or directly from the publisher by calling at (800) 848-4735.

Martha Beck, PhD, is a Harvard-educated life coach and monthly columnist for O, The Oprah Magazine. She is the author of the bestsellers Finding Your Own North Star: Claiming the Life You Were Meant to Live and the memoir Expecting Adam. She lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with her family. Her hobbies include excessive viewing of the Discovery Channel, occasional pondering, and naps.

She can be contacted at



The following is an excerpt from the book Cholesterol Down 
by Janet Bond Brill, Ph.D., R.D., LDN
Published by Three Rivers Press; December 2006;$13.95US/$17.95CAN; 978-0-307-33911-9
Copyright © 2006 Janet Brill, Ph.D.

The Whole-Grain Goodness of Oatmeal

A patient once said to me, “My grandfather ate oatmeal every morning of his life and he lived to be a hundred.” My response was “Do what your grandfather did.”

Whole-grain oats are tasty and inexpensive, and have a long history of health benefits. This simple grain has been shown to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, normalize blood sugar, appease the appetite, and ameliorate intestinal problems. Remember the oat bran craze of the 1980s? That phenomenon grew out of an overwhelming amount of scientific evidence that began to build during the 1960s, linking oat consumption with dramatic declines in blood cholesterol.

What Makes a Grain Whole?

Whole grains are kernels of grain that are consumed with all three naturally occurring components still intact: the outer fiber-rich bran layer, the middle energy-packed endosperm, and the inner nutrient-rich germ layer. The outer bran holds the mineral cache, with up to 80 percent of all the minerals found in the kernel concentrated in this coating. The bran also contains fiber, protein, and some B vitamins. The endosperm is a pocket of energy-yielding starch (complex carbohydrate), some protein, iron, and a minuscule amount of B vitamins, all used to nourish the growing seedling. The germ is packed with a gold mine of vitamins including vitamin E (wheat germ is one of the richest sources of vitamin E), B vitamins (especially high in folate), some trace minerals (iron, magnesium, selenium, and potassium), fiber, and phytosterols (plant hormones that lower cholesterol).

Why whole grains are best

When grains are milled or refined, they are stripped of the outer bran and germ layers and thus lose many of the naturally occurring vitamins and minerals, healthful fats, and phytonutrients. Processing leaves behind only the starchy endosperm. In 1942 the U.S. government passed a law requiring iron and B vitamin enrichment of processed grains to combat vitamin deficiency as a result of eating refined products, devoid of their natural lode of vitamins and minerals. This is why when you purchase a refined grain product such as white bread or white rice (made solely from the endosperm of grains), it will by law be “enriched,” meaning a few nutrients have been added back -- often niacin, iron, thiamin, riboflavin, and folate. Unfortunately, what are lost in the processing and not required to be replaced are wholesome nutrients such as fiber, vitamin E, several B vitamins, potassium, minerals such as manganese, magnesium, copper, and zinc, and various healthful phytochemicals such as lignans, flavonoids, and saponins. Clearly, whole grains are the far superior choice over refined grains for fiber, vitamins, minerals, and other important nutrients.

Whole Grains for Good Health

A diet rich in whole grains -- rather than highly processed, refined grains -- has been linked with reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and certain types of cancers, as well as with lower blood pressure and improved bowel function.

The connection between whole grains and heart health is where the science is particularly strong, with a huge body of research backing the notion that diets high in whole grains reduce your risk for heart disease. Data from the Iowa Women’s Health Study have provided sound evidence that whole grains keep a woman’s cardiovascular system in good health, even after menopause. Researchers took detailed dietary and health histories from 34,492 postmenopausal women between the ages of fifty-five and sixty-nine and followed them over a nine-year period. The women who consumed the most servings of whole grains had more than a 30 percent decrease in risk of death from heart disease than the women who ate less than one serving per day.

Whole grains also stop inflammation of the arteries, according to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition. Inflammation is related to plaque buildup, or atherosclerosis. C-reactive protein is a protein circulating in the bloodstream that is used by doctors as a marker for inflammation and a predictor of future cardiovascular disease (a value above 3 mg/L is considered indicative of high risk for heart disease). Analyses of almost 4,000 American men and women showed that the higher the fiber intake (whole grains are one of the best sources of dietary fiber), the lower the blood concentration of C-reactive protein.

What’s good for the heart is also good for the brain, according to a study by researchers at Harvard Medical School. As part of the famed Nurses’ Health Study, 75,521 women nurses between the ages of thirty-eight and sixty-three were followed for ten years, providing dietary and health data at four separate intervals. The study found that nurses who ate two to three servings of whole grains daily were 43 percent less likely to have an ischemic stroke (blockage of the artery feeding the brain) than those women eating less than one serving per day.

The benefits of whole grains are not just for women -- eating whole grains helps men live longer and healthier lives, too. Boston researchers examined associations between whole-grain cereal intake and risk of death from all causes in data drawn from 86,190 U.S. male physicians participating in the Physicians’ Health Study. Researchers followed the physicians over a period averaging five and a half years. Higher whole-grain cereal consumption compared to refined grains was found to significantly reduce the risk of dying not only from heart disease but in fact from all causes.

How much whole-grain food should you eat?

The most recent U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) food guide pyramid ( recommends consuming three whole-grain servings daily. If you’re like most Americans, though, your whole-grain intake is woefully short of this goal. According to the USDA, on average we barely even get in one wholegrain serving per day, with only roughly 7 percent of Americans eating three a day. The reason, say some nutrition scientists, is that Americans have become lazy about cooking and eating whole grains because they take longer to cook, chew, and digest than refined grains. Perhaps it is also true that outside of your grocery or health food store, whole grains are nearly impossible to find. When is the last time you ordered quinoa at McDonald’s?

My advice is that you don’t follow the path of the 46 percent of all adults who eat no whole grains at all. Instead, try to get in at least three servings each day to increase your fiber and nutrient intake and begin reaping the plethora of health benefits. Eating a morning bowl of oatmeal is a great first step to get you a third of the way there.

The Cholesterol-Lowering Power of Oats

Scientists have long recognized that oats lower cholesterol, especially “bad” LDL cholesterol, and have proven it in at least fifty studies in humans over forty years of research. Furthermore, oats reduce LDL cholesterol without a concurrent reduction in the level of “good” HDL cholesterol -- and may even raise HDL. Some time ago, researchers at the University of California, Davis, performed a study in which 84 grams (roughly 3 ounces) of oat bran (the most soluble fiber-rich portion of oats) were added to the subjects’ usual low-fat diet. LDL cholesterol fell an amazing 17 percent in just six weeks.

Why should you choose oatmeal over a refined wheat cereal such as Special K for breakfast? Researchers at Colorado State University showed that eating oats can change the characteristics of LDL particles to a more desirable fatter and fluffier shape. Thirty six subjects were given either an oat cereal or a wheat cereal for twelve weeks. Not only did the amount of dangerous small, dense LDL particles drop considerably in the oat-eating group, but members also showed beneficially altered LDL particle size. This change protects you against heart disease because the smaller or denser LDL particles are more susceptible to oxidation, have less of an affinity for the liver LDL receptors (recall that the receptors are the only way out of the bloodstream for LDL), remain in the bloodstream longer than larger LDL particles, and can slip into the arterial wall easier.

Copyright © 2006 Janet Brill, PH.D.

Janet Bond Brill, Ph.D., R.D., LDN, is a registered and licensed dietitian/nutritionist, exercise physiologist, and certified wellness coach. She has been published in the International Journal of Obesity and the International Journal of Sport Nutrition, as well as in the popular pres

Send Love Letters To Your Kids

By Bernie Siegel, MD
Author of Love, Magic & Mudpies

Smile at your children, smile at each other -- it doesn't matter who it is -- and that will help you to grow up in greater love for each other.
--Mother Teresa


It's not enough to love your kids. You have to tell them that you love them. They need your love poem tattooed on their hearts so they can take it with them wherever they go. The famous poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote, "I love you not for what you are but for what I am when I am with you." That's the essence of a family. Let your children know that their mere presence makes your life better every day and that they don't have to do anything other than be themselves to make the world a better place. That is what makes your life and theirs meaningful. Don't just say it; write it down for them. Words seem to carry more weight when they are on paper. Write love letters to your kids, send cards, and leave notes for them around the house.


Today, while searching through some desk drawers, I found a passage from a poem called "I'm So Proud of You," by Ruthann Tholen, that we sent to our children on Valentine's Day 1993. "When I held you as a child it was like taking up in my arms all of my hopes for the future," the poem begins. "I wondered then what you would become, and you haven't let me down.


"My child, you are a person to be proud of. You are sensitive, but strong, with the courage to follow your own path, to know and do what is right for you. The love between us needs few words, but is the foundation for all we give by being there, by sharing time and effort, by our talks, and by our caring. I'm proud when you accomplish things, but even prouder of the way you live. Whether you win or lose, you do it with dignity and integrity and humanity, and I respect that. From your own efforts, there has grown a deep goodness in you. I can wish nothing more than that your life will hold a future of happiness."

We signed each note, "I love you, and I'm very glad you are my child."


I can assure you that poem is going out again. I know our children will be pleased to remember when they first received it, and that it will encourage them and underscore how much they are loved as they face their own challenges with their families.


While you're spreading love around, be sure to tell all of your family members, your neighbors, and your kids' teachers how highly you think of your children and how much you love them. Why? Because the word will get back to your kids, and they will know you weren't saying it to them just to make them feel better. If you are telling it to everyone, they'll believe that you must really mean it. And they will be right.


How to Make the Magic: Get a book of poetry and and some meaningful poems to read or send to your children. Share them with all of your kids, whether they're still sitting in high chairs or facing them, feeding kids of their own. If you're having trouble with one, give him or her a poem anyway. Do it today. Then go through your calendar and make a note to give them another one on each and every holiday. After all, no matter what conflicts arise, they will always be your children, and you still have the right to love them, and they deserve to be loved.


Reprinted from: Love, Magic & Mudpies: Raising Your Kids to Feel Loved, Be Kind, and Make a Difference by Bernie Siegel, MD © 2006 Bernie Siegel, MD. (November 2006; $17.95US/$21.95CAN; 1-59486-554-X) Permission granted by Rodale, Inc., Emmaus, PA 18098. Available wherever books are sold or directly from the publisher by calling at (800) 848-4735.


Bernie S. Siegel, MD, was born in Brooklyn, New York. For many, Bernie needs no introduction. In 1978, he began talking about patient empowerment and the choice to live fully and die in peace. In 1986, his first book, Love, Medicine & Miracles was published; the book became a worldwide bestseller and redirected his entire life. Bernie and his wife, Bobbie, have five children and eight grandchildren. In times past, their home outside of New Haven, Connecticut, with its many children, pets, and interests, has resembled a cross between a family art gallery, museum, zoo, and automobile repair shop. It still resembles these things, although the children are trying to improve its appearance in order to avoid embarrassment.


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Keeping your Post-holiday Spirits Up and your Weight Down
By Judith J. Wurtman, PhD, and Nina Frusztajer Marquis, MD
Authors of The Serotonin Power Diet

To recoup from the holidays, what you need most cannot be found at any post-holiday sale. Although you might get some great deals on some fantastic stuff, serotonin will leave you, and your credit card account, in better shape.

Serotonin is a brain chemical with two important functions. First, it balances your mood. This is why so many antidepressants, like Prozac, and other mood stabilizers have their effect via serotonin. The other important function of serotonin is to shut off your appetite. It is appetite, not hunger, that leads you to eat when you’re bored, stressed, or tempted by delicious foods around you. Appetite-induced overeating, not hunger, can add extra pounds and make it difficult to lose weight. And if you feel a post-holiday let-down, you’re exhausted, or you’re feeling a bit down because of the dark days of winter, you’re even more likely to overeat to soothe your emotions, your mood, or both. Under these circumstances, few people opt for steamed vegetables and broiled fish as they eat to comfort themselves. You’ve been there before and most likely you’ve chosen high fat sweet or salty foods like ice cream, potato chips, cookies, buttery mashed potatoes, pasta alfredo, or donuts. Eat more than a few nibbles of these foods and before you know it your weight is out of control. The good news is that certain foods can cut your appetite and make you feel good because of their effect on serotonin production. The key is to eat the right foods at the right times in the right amounts to make the serotonin you need.

You may have seen serotonin or one of it’s building blocks such as 5-HTP or tryptophan sold as supplements at a health food store, but don’t waste your money buying them. They will do nothing to get more serotonin into the brain. The only way to give your brain more serotonin is to eat sweet and starchy carbohydrates. (Of note is that the sugar in fruit, fructose, will NOT increase serotonin in your brain).

This is great news for anyone who wrongly believes that they should avoid carbohydrates because they’re either bad for you or they’ll make you gain weight. Eating carbohydrates sets off a series of biochemical reactions that allows the brain to make serotonin. The carbohydrates need to be fat free or low fat because fat slows the process of making serotonin. And too much dietary fat can make you feel sluggish. Also, in order for the brain to make serotonin, you must eat carbohydrates without protein. While protein is an important component of a healthy diet, it interferes with the brain’s ability to make serotonin.

What you need to do is simple: eat carbohydrates when serotonin levels are naturally lower and when you’re more susceptible to overeating. For nearly everyone, it is late afternoon and evening. That’s when we crave carbohydrates anyway and explains the long lines at Starbuck’s in the afternoons. Our clients are thrilled to learn they can have pretzels or fat free cookies as an afternoon snack and then dine on low fat carbohydrate dishes like pasta marinara sprinkled with parmesan cheese or a large bowl of butternut squash soup with crusty bread followed by fat free hot chocolate and vanilla wafers. This afternoon and evening comfort food soothes the appetite and makes you feel good when otherwise you would suffer from cravings and a bad mood.

Make sure you have protein and, if you choose, fruit, in the early parts of the day. Then, when you need a serotonin boost, for example late in the afternoon, in the evening, or during periods of stress, eat fat free or low fat carbohydrates.

Before dinner, have a handful of pretzels or crackers. This will take the edge off your appetite. You’ve probably done something similar in a restaurant when the bread basket came. You munched on a few pieces and by the time your appetizer and entrée were served you weren’t nearly as hungry as when you placed your order. Next time, order two appetizers or just an entrée and eat some bread while you’re waiting to be served. At home, try a starchy meal like polenta with sautéed mushrooms and a dollop of sour cream for dinner to boost your evening serotonin. Or, if others at home want some meat, chicken, or fish for dinner, have a bite or two then save the rest of your portion for lunch the next day. Opt for lots of vegetables for good nutrients and wholesome starches like brown rice, sweet potatoes, and whole wheat bread or pasta.

Feeling calm and getting control of your eating will allow you to move beyond the holiday season with your own spirits restored and your weight in check. Serotonin is the gift that keeps on giving all year long.

Copyright © 2006 Judith J. Wurtman, PhD, and Nina Frusztajer Marquis, MD

Judith J. Wurtman, PhD, has been recognized worldwide for decades of pioneering research into the relationship of food, mood, brain, and appetite. Dr. Wurtman received her PhD in cell biology from MIT and took additional training as an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow in nutrition/obesity. The author of five books for the general public, she has written more than 40 peer-reviewed articles for professional publications.

Nina Frusztajer Marquis, MD, received her master's degree in nutrition from Columbia University and her medical degree from George Washington University. Her articles on weight, stress, and lifestyle have appeared in numerous publications. With Judith Wurtman, she founded the Adara Weight Loss Centers in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she lives, and in Boston, where Dr. Wurtman resides.

They are the authors of The Serotonin Power Diet: Use Your Brain’s Natural Chemistry to Cut Cravings, Curb Emotional Overeating, and Lose Weight. Published by Rodale. January 2007; $24.95US/$31.00CAN; 1-59486-346-6.

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Lose Weight Over the Holidays? It’s Possible, and Here’s How
by Tom Weede, author of The Entrepreneur Diet

Forget about adding pounds to your waistline this holiday season. With a few simple lifestyle adjustments, you actually can lose weight -- and still enjoy the festivities. 

Although it’s commonly asserted that on average people put on at least 5 pounds between Thanksgiving and January 1, research from Tufts University shows that most people add about a pound. So shedding some fat can be a reality -- with a little strategic planning, according to Tom Weede, author of The Entrepreneur Diet: The On-the-Go Plan for Fitness, Weight Loss and Healthy Living ($22.95, Entrepreneur Press, January 2007).

“It’s true that parties and a busy schedule can squeeze out exercise and eating well,” says Weede. “But you can resist the holiday bulge, and maybe even trim some excess, by tweaking your routine just a little. Think of it as a gift to yourself.”

’Tis the season to be in shape, and here’s how, according to Weede:

·         Be whole -- Before heading to a party or a big meal, eat a toasted whole-wheat bagel or a bowl of oatmeal. You won’t show up hungry and the whole grains are complex carbohydrates that take longer to digest, helping you feel fuller longer so you won’t over-snack on the pre-meal munchies.

·         Water it down -- Drink a tall glass of ice water along with your holiday feast -- this will help fill your stomach and leave less room for eggnog and stuffing. You’ll even burn a few extra calories as your body warms the water temperature.

·         Beware the buffet -- At an all-you-can-eat affair, fill up on veggies first, then stand or sit a good distance from the table.

·         Take a post-meal walk -- Research indicates that physical activity after a big holiday meal may the lower levels of fat in the blood.

·         Get creative with exercise -- Maximize the little time you have for exercise with circuit workouts, which combines strength and cardiovascular training. Here’s how: Move from one exercise to the next with minimal rest between exercises (which keeps your heart rate up). Once through all the movements, cycle back through the circuit one or two more times.

·         Recruit a workout partner -- Plan ahead of time to exercise with a friend at set times each week during the holidays. If they’re counting on you to show up, you’ll be there. 

·         Work out at the mall -- Mega malls have massive parking lots and stores as far as the eye can see. Take advantage of the size and park on the opposite side from where you intend to shop -- you could get in 20 minutes of walking this way.

·         Solve your stress -- Schedule a massage at least once during the holidays. Chronic stress can cause elevated levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which can boost your appetite. No time? Practice “belly breathing” a few minutes a day. Sitting in a comfortable chair, take a slow, deep breath through your nose, feeling as though you’re filling every part of your lungs. Pause, then let the air flow out slowly from your mouth or nose. Completely exhale, and then repeat five to 10 times.

·         Get shuteye -- Sleep deprivation can result in lower levels of the hormone leptin, which helps regulate hunger. This may lead your brain to think the body hasn’t taken in enough food, setting you up to overeat. 

·         Don’t count calories -- Focus on the big picture -- a few holiday indulgences aren’t going to burst your belt. It’s the overall calories you eat and the overall calories you burn during the whole holiday period that count. 

“You really don’t have to deprive yourself during this season,” Weede says. “Just make some good choices, stick to them, and you’ll start the New Year ahead of the game.”

Packed with advice from fitness and nutrition experts, The Entrepreneur Diet offers quick meals, healthy-fast food choices, and simple exercises for anyone on a tight schedule. It will be available nationwide and at in January. 

Tom Weede, a former senior editor of Men's Fitness magazine, is a certified health/fitness instructor with the American College of Sports Medicine as well as a certified strength and conditioning specialist with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. He overcame struggles with his weight by starting a regular running routine in his late 20s. He is now an avid runner and cyclist and has completed several Ironman triathlons. Currently a freelance writer specializing in health and fitness topics, he lives with his wife Adrienne in Oro Valley, Arizona. 


The Ultimate New York Diet
The Fastest Way to a Trimmer You!
By David Kirsch
Published by McGraw-Hill
October 2006;$24.95US/$29.95CAN; 0-07-147582-6


Lose Weight -- and Keep it Off -- in a New York Minute!

When supermodel Heidi Klum needed to get into tip-top shape for the Victoria's Secret fashion show -- just eight weeks after giving birth to her second child -- she turned to a miracle worker, celebrity fitness trainer David Kirsch, and his Ultimate New York Diet.

But you don't have to be a celebrity -- or a New Yorker -- to reap the benefits of this fresh approach to a healthy, fit lifestyle. All you need is the desire to take control of your eating and your body and the willingness to change your life for the better. Once you take that first step to a new, improved you, there's no limit to how fabulous you can look and feel!


The Ultimate New York Diet provides the tools to slim down quickly and safely:


·         A diet broken down into three phases over the course of eight weeks, so you can see results fast and be inspired to stay on track

·         Advice on how to make healthy choices at all types of restaurants, allowing you to eat out every night

·         A guilt-free cheat day that allows you to splurge

·         64 quick, easy-to-prepare recipes for healthy, satisfying meals

·         Ten-minute workouts you can do anywhere -- from your cubicle to a taxicab -- that will raise your metabolism so the weight comes off fast 


David Kirsch, author of the wildly popular Ultimate New York Body Plan, has written this book for the needs of people with busy, multitasking lives -- people who want to be on top of their game when it comes to their careers and their bodies. This is not just a diet; it's a life transformation. After completing The Ultimate New York Diet, your attitude toward food, exercise, and wellness will be forever changed and you'll finally have the key to a fit and fabulous body. 


David Kirsch is the founder and owner of the Madison Square Club, celebrated for its custom-designed fitness training and nutritional counseling. Visit David's website at

The Maui Millionaires
by David Finkel, Diane Kennedy, CPA
Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; October 2006;$24.95US/$29.99CAN; 0-470-04537-X
Copyright © 2007 David Finkel and Diane Kennedy

Chapter 17

The Five Wealth Factors

There are five Wealth Factors that cumulatively determine your real financial wealth. Let’s walk through each of these five Wealth Factors in turn and see how you can use this understanding to speed you on your way to becoming a Maui Millionaire.

Wealth Factor One: Cash Flow

Cash flow is the money that flows to you. This could be a paycheck, an owner’s draw, a check at the closing when you sell a property, or a quarterly distribution from a passive partnership. The distinguishing feature to this form of wealth is that it is liquid money -- cash -- that comes to you.

There are three main types of cash flow that we’re interested in at the moment:

1.      Earned income, also known as active cash flow.

2.      Passive cash flow.

3.      Passive residual cash flow.

Earned Income:

Earned income is active cash flow that you work for day after day. Most people’s main source of wealth comes from earned income, whether this be wages or salary they earn from working a job or net profit they generate from running a business. Please understand one very important fact. You will almost never become wealthy from earned income alone. Why not? Because the way our culture works is that the more you work and earn in the form of earned income, the harder it is for you to become financially free just from this source of income alone.

Earned income is like sugar. It gives you a jolt of energy but leaves you feeling empty and tired. Earned income comes in and out of your life so quickly that it often makes it harder to become wealthy. We know this is counterintuitive, but still we've observed this in the lives of many of the people who've come to us for coaching to become wealthy.

Here is the sad cycle we’ve observed build up and repeat in so many people’s lives. They focus on getting the right job or profession so that they can earn a good salary (earned income.) As they start to earn more they begin to spend more. In fact, not only do they spend on those nice little extras like a trip here or a meal out there, but they also spend on things that create a higher fixed cost of living. They buy a bigger house; they make payments on two or three nicer cars; they send their kids to expensive private schools. These are the things that have payments due month after month, year after year. Once they acquire these things it is very difficult to ever stop paying for them. The higher their cost of living goes up, especially their fixed cost of living, the more they feel trapped in the rat race of working to support their lifestyle. They are forced to work long hours just to keep from falling too far behind.

We want you to imagine that earned income is like sugar. It tastes sweet but burns fast. It doesn’t last. And in its wake it leaves you craving more. To get your next sugar fix, you’re forced to go back to a job you don’t love, to spend 8 to 12 hours with people you may not enjoy, come home tired and stressed, so that the next morning you can wake up and repeat the process.

Most people are addicted to sugar and living their life on a treadmill chasing after their next month's sugar.

And, if you can imagine its possible, things are actually even worse for those people who live off the sugar of earned income. It is the heaviest taxed form of income! This means that for every dollar you earn of earned income you are paying from 15 to 50 percent more tax than if it was another form of income. This means you have to work even harder just to keep from flying off the back end of the treadmill. Is it any wonder so many people feel that the harder they work the further and further they are falling behind?

Think about the average high earner for a moment. They may earn $200,000 to $500,000 or more in income, but they end up paying 45 to 55 percent or more of this in taxes at the state and federal level. They tend to spend more than they earn supporting a lifestyle that has little or no enduring value, but has high fixed costs to maintain. They spend on things like big houses and fancy cars and impressive vacations. They live a life of instant gratification (also know as a fast high) where they live in a peer group of other spenders (also known as environmental pressure to use) where day by day they have to work harder and harder to maintain the lifestyle they no longer feel they have the time or energy to enjoy. Welcome to the rat race!

Remember, active income is just like sugar. It provides calories, but these are empty calories, that sustain people but don't nourish them. And like sugar, active income burns fast and is highly addictive. And as with any addictive substance, we start to build a tolerance for it -- and continually spend more and more. Once the cycle can no longer be maintained, when a person no longer has the active income to support a lifestyle habit, there are massive withdrawal pains.

When you're living on the edge, addicted to sugar, scared to get off the treadmill for fear it will all come crashing down, you are caught in the rat race. If you're poor, then you struggle to survive, to just get through the day. If you're middle income, then you struggle to make ends meet each month. And if you're a high earner, you may the king rat, but you have a hidden struggle to keep up appearances.

Understand this. If you must work to feed your lifestyle then you are still in the rat race. There is a simple test to see where you currently stand. If you stopped working for income, would you still have the passive, residual cash flow to support your lifestyle? If the answer is no, then you are running in the rat race.

There is nothing wrong with the rat race. All Maui Millionaires started out there, but they all made a conscious commitment to escape as quickly as possible. And you can do the same thing. So what’s the way out of the rat race? To invest and grow the other four wealth factors, and to cultivate healthier types of cash flow (aka passive cash flow and passive residual cash flow.)

Maui Millionaires know how important it is to use active income to invest in accumulating the assets that generate the passive, residual income they need to support their lifestyle in a healthy way.

Here’s the bottom line -- Maui Millionaires know that earned income is only one of the five wealth factors, and in fact it is the least important. We hope you find this encouraging if you are on the front end of your wealth building.

Passive Cash Flow

It’s time to talk about the next type of cash flow -- passive cash flow. Passive cash flow is money that flows to you without your having to actively work to get it. Now with any investment it takes some time to set it up and to oversee it, so we have created the litmus test for whether or not a specific stream of income is passive or active. Passive cash flow is income that flows to you with your having to work less than 10 hours per month to maintain that income stream.

While that 10-hour limitation is arbitrary (we could have chosen 12 hours or 8 hours) it has come out of our personal experiences building wealth and coaching other people to build great wealth.

Your goal is to generate enough passive cash flow so that you never have to work again. When you reach this place you now are financially free. Chances are you’ll still work, but you’ll do this out of choice and freedom not out of constraint and desperation.

A Simple Story That Explains the Fundamental Secret of the World’s Wealthiest People

Most of you will remember the old folk tale of the goose that laid the golden egg. It seems there was this farmer who one morning made the incredible discovery that one of his geese had laid a golden egg. He took in his precious discovery to show his wife who hovered over him as they weighed their valuable egg. To the delight of both of them, the next morning their amazing goose produced another golden egg.

Well, this grew to be a regular occurrence, with the goose producing one single golden egg each morning. Finally the farmer’s wife grew upset over waiting for that stingy goose to only give them one egg each day. So she convinced her husband to butcher the goose and get all the golden eggs in one fell swoop. And reaching for his ax, that is exactly what the farmer did. Only to his and his wife’s dismay, they found that once the deed was done that there were no more eggs inside the goose at all. We like to think of this as a metaphor describing one of the key lessons for wealth builders: If you are investing solely for capital gains, then you are investing by fattening up and slaughtering your goose. This may work to eat well for one fine meal, but to eat over the long term you would do better to gather the eggs month after month, year after year.

So what is the difference between investing for capital gains and investing for residual cash flow? Well, capital gains comes when you sell an asset you own. And as you can figure out, once you sell something you no longer are able to sell it again or use it to earn ongoing income. Residual cash flow, on the other hand, are things like quarterly disbursements of profits from a business partnership, or monthly cash flow from an investment property. It is something you get again and again and again, provided the goose (read asset) is properly fed and cared for. One way to see your role in building wealth is that of a breeder and caretaker of golden geese.

Why It Isn't Enough to Create Passive Income

The key point is that forced appreciation takes time and energy to realize. It is the foundation of most great fortunes. But it should not be the stopping point.

Passive, Residual Cash Flow:

We’ve already talked about the need to create passive cash flow if you want to be financially free, but now we need to drill down even deeper. You can make passive cash flow in the form of a lump sum payment you receive when you sell off an asset you own but didn’t take more than 10 hours per month to oversee. But while this money may be passive, it still is just a one time payment and not a secure income stream. Going back to our folk tale, it's a slaughtered goose and not the daily golden eggs. No matter how delicious that goose may be, it still won't feed you forever.

This is why Maui Millionaires know that they need to create not just passive cash flow, but more importantly, passive residual cash flow. Passive, residual cash flow is money that flows to you each month or quarter, year after year. It is out of passive, residual cash flow that true financial freedom is built. 

So which is better, capital gains or residual cash flow? The answer is that you need both! Early on in your wealth building you will be investing for what is called “forced appreciation.” This is where you buy or build an asset and put in energy and work to vastly increase the value of that asset. For example, you might buy a foreclosure house for a 40 percent discount in price, fix it up, then resell it for a large profit. The house you paid $300,000 for was worth $500,000 when you sold it. This is an example of forced appreciation. You forced the asset to be $200,000 more valuable because you both fixed it up and you changed the circumstances of the person owning it. Now that you have created this equity you might tap into it by selling (capital gain) and buying an even bigger property.

Another example of forced appreciation comes when you grow a business. In the early years you put in sweat equity to grow the market and your business’s share of that market, knowing that if you are successful, you will be rewarded hundreds of times over for your time and effort. Many Maui Millionaires made their first fortune by starting and building a successful business of their own. For example, Stephanie and Jack, two Maui Millionaires from California, invested 17 years to build their thriving manufacturing business. Today that business is worth well over $15 million. 

Once you reach a certain point you need to transition your wealth focus from forced appreciation to creating passive, residual cash flow. 

Copyright © 2007 David Finkel and Diane Kennedy

David Finkel is one of the nation's most respected wealth masters. A former Olympic-level athlete, he is a self-made multimillionaire and the cocreator of Maui Mastermind, the world's most exclusive wealth retreat. He is also the bestselling author of five financial books, including The Real Estate Fast Track, from Wiley, and his how-to financial articles have appeared in periodicals across the United States.

Diane Kennedy, CPA, is a top financial author and investing expert. She is the founder and owner of DKA, a leading tax strategy and accounting firm. A past recipient of the prestigious Blue Chip Enterprise Award, Kennedy is also the author of Loopholes of the Rich and coauthor of The Insider's Guide to Real Estate Investing Loopholes, both from Wiley.

8 Body Signs Women Should Heed  


Joan Liebmann-Smith, Ph.D. and Jacqueline Nardi Egan

Authors of Body Signs


When we have persistent pain, fever, or bleeding, it’s usually a wake up call that something’s seriously wrong and we should see a doctor. But when our bodies send us more subtle signs, such as hair loss, droopy eyelids, or excessive gas, we tend to write them off as cosmetic concerns and try to ignore or cover them up. However, if you turn a blind eye to nasty nodules, a deaf ear to strange sounds, or your nose up at smelly smells, you may be missing important warning signs of various diseases and disorders.


Here are 8 body signs women may be tempted to ignore that may spell trouble:



While thinning hair in women can be a sign of female-pattern baldness, an inherited condition, it can also be signal a nutritional deficiency or a type of diabetes related to excess androgens. If you suddenly start noticing lots of hair in your drain or on your pillow, it can be a tell-tale sign of a hormonal disorder such as hypopitituitarism, or more commonly, hyperthyroidism. Other signs of an over-active thyroid include weight loss, jitteriness, excessive hunger and thirst, and heat intolerance. One of the most common but often under-diagnosed autoimmune diseases, hyperthyroidism is 7 times more likely to strike women than men. The good news is that it’s easily treatable.



Hair sprouting in undesirable places, especially on the face and chest, usually signals a hormonal imbalance from such conditions as Cushing’s syndrome or polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Cushing’s is a rare condition that affects more women than men and usually strikes between the ages of 20 and 50. Weight gain, fat on the upper back ("buffalo hump") and torso but thin arms and legs, round face, irregular periods, and fatigue are other common signs. PCOS is much more common, affecting 6% to 8% of women of childbearing age, and is a major cause of infertility. Other signs include acne and being overweight. Both conditions are usually treatable with drugs. And while having some facial hair is fairly common during menopause because of the decrease in estrogen and increase in androgen, a lot of facial or body hair in postmenopausal women can signal the presence of ovarian cysts or ovarian cancer.



If you find yourself shivering year round, you may be suffering from hypothyroidism, one of the most under-diagnosed conditions in women. Indeed, it’s estimated that more than half of the cases of go undiagnosed. This is very unfortunate since an under-active thyroid causes a variety of unpleasant signs such as weight gain, constipation, dry hair, skin, and nails. Hypothyroidism is much more common in women than men and usually affects them over the age of 50. Like other hormonal disorders, it can be treated with medication.



The skin on our eyelids, as well as under our eyes, naturally sags as we get older. Droopy eyelids can also be another warning sign of hypothyroidism, which tends to affect older women. In younger women, however, droopy eyelids can signal myasthenia gravis, an autoimmune, neuromuscular disease that is more common in women than men. It tends to strike women between the ages of 20 and 40 (and men over 60), and it’s more common in women than men. Other signs may include double vision, difficulty swallowing, hoarseness, and muscle weakness. If you only have one droopy eyelid, it may be due to Bell’s palsy, a temporary facial paralysis, or Horner’s syndrome, a nerve-damage disorder. If one eyelid suddenly droops, it can be a serious warning sign of a stroke.



In winter, many women notice that their eyes and skin are dry and their mouths are parched as a result of low humidity and over-heated rooms. Mucous membranes can also become dry as a side effect of various medications, as well as from the loss of estrogen that normally accompanies aging. But dry eyes, mouth, and other mucous membranes, including the vagina, can also signal Sjorgren’ s syndrome, a serious autoimmune disease that primarily affects women in their 40s and 50s. Joint inflammation or tenderness is another common sign. Although Sjorgren’s is not rare, it often goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed for years. Unfortunately it’s a progressive disease that, without treatment, can cause eye damage, dental decay and gum disease, and can damage the digestive and reproductive systems. Although there is no cure, early detection and treatment can help alleviate the symptoms and help stop the progression of the disease.



A deep, husky voice in a woman is often a dead giveaway that she is or was a heavy smoker. But a chronically hoarse or gravelly voice can also signal gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), commonly known as reflux. It can also be a sign of iron deficiency anemia, as well as a host of serious autoimmune conditions, including hypothyroidism, myasthenia gravis, rheumatoid arthritis, and Sjögren’s syndrome. A husky voice may signal a hormonal imbalance, and many women notice their voices deepening during or after menopause. Lastly, chronic hoarseness can be a warning sign of benign or malignant growths on the vocal cords, throat, mouth, or neck.



Many women get swollen breasts before their periods and when they’re pregnant. But if you have a swollen breast that’s red or discolored and feels warm, it may be a sign of inflammatory breast cancer (IBC), a rare, but very aggressive, form of breast cancer. Unfortunately, IBC is often misdiagnosed by doctors as an infection or even an insect bite. And, unlike with other forms of breast cancer, most women with IBC do not have a breast lump. The skin of the breast may also be dimpled like the skin of an orange, and there may be breast tenderness, itching, or aching. With early diagnosis and treatment, more women are surviving this deadly form of cancer.



Excessive gas can cause flatulence, not to mention embarrassment. When the gas doesn’t get released, our bellies become distended and we feel bloated. Being gassy or bloated may be a sign that you have lactose intolerance or food allergies. It can also be an indication of some serious gastrointestinal conditions such as gallstones and irritable bowel syndrome, or even cancer of the digestive system. Bloating can also be an early warning sign of ovarian cancer, one of the deadliest and one of the most under-diagnosed cancers in women. Other early warning signs include pelvic or abdominal pain, difficulty eating or feeling full quickly, and feeling a frequent or urgent need to urinate. The prognosis is good if diagnosed early. Unfortunately, most cases 80% aren’t caught early enough to save a woman’s life.


The bottom line is if you notice any of these signs, be sure to mention them to your doctor as soon as possible. He or she can determine whether it’s something you can safely ignore or something that warrants further diagnosis or treatment.

Joan Liebmann-Smith, Ph.D., is a medical sociologist and award-winning medical writer. Her articles have appeared in American Health, Ms., Newsweek, Redbook, Self, and Vogue, and she has appeared on numerous television talk shows, including The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Today Show. She has a daughter, Rebecca, a cat, Fazelnut, and lives with her husband, Richard -- also a writer -- in New York City.

Jacqueline Nardi Egan
 is a medical journalist who specializes in developing and writing educational programs with and for physicians, allied health professionals, patients, and consumers. She is also a former medical editor of Family Health magazine. She has a daughter, Elizabeth, two dogs, Coco and Abby, and divides her time between Darien, Connecticut, and Sag Harbor, New York. Visit
 for more info.

Body Signs; Bantam Dell December 2007;$25.00US/$30.00CAN; 978-0-553-80507-9 is available at all booksellers.


Full-Time Woman, Part-Time Career

Are you recently married, wondering what you are going to do about your career once you have children?


Are you a former career woman turned stay-at-home mom, whose kids are now in school, looking for a way to rejoin the workforce?


Or, have you simply ever wanted to start your own business?


While most home-based businesses involve selling cosmetics, kitchen accessories, or other products from well-known companies, these options are not necessarily well-suited or appealing to all women. Until now there were not a lot of options for career-oriented or professional women who want to use their existing skills to go into consulting, public speaking, training, writing, coaching, or other areas. Full-Time Woman, Part-Time Career is the first book of its kind to bridge the gap by offering professional and technical career options to women who are looking for a more flexible career, lifestyle, and income while raising a family. 


You will learn:

  • The Top Ten Qualities Required to Go Out On Your Own and Start a Business (How to find out whether or not this is for you)

  • The Top Five Ways to Sell Yourself and Your Services

  • Five Criteria to Consider When Setting Fees

  • Five Ways to Establish Credibility

  • Six Things to Remember When Negotiating Contracts

  • And Much More!

Told from the perspective of someone who has done it, the author shows you how, in as little as two years, you can build a flexible professional business, working from home, that affords you ample income and more time with your family. Full-Time Woman, Part-Time Career is loaded with tips, advice, case studies, and personal testimonials from other women who have gone out on their own.


Available September 15, 2005 from,,, or any bookstore. $19.95 USA.


About the Author

Karen Steede Terry is self-employed as an independent consultant and software instructor. A best-selling author in her field of expertise, her clients range from Fortune 500 companies and state agencies, to numerous county and municipal governments. As a new mom herself, Karen wrestled for many years with how to resolve the "traditional" role of women as wives and mothers versus having a career. The result is her new book: Full-Time Woman, Part-Time Career.

Do you want to advertise your business in this spot?  Click here to learn more!

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