STOP STRESSING AND IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH!

Positive thinking: Reduce stress by eliminating negative self-talk

Positive thinking helps with stress management and can even improve your health. Practice overcoming negative self-talk with examples provided.

By Mayo Clinic staff

Is your glass half-empty or half-full? How you answer this age-old question about positive thinking may reflect your outlook on life, your attitude toward yourself, and whether you’re optimistic or pessimistic — and it may even affect your health.

Indeed, some studies show that personality traits like optimism and pessimism can affect many areas of your health and well-being. The positive thinking that typically comes with optimism is a key part of effective stress management. And effective stress management is associated with many health benefits. If you tend to be pessimistic, don’t despair — you can learn positive thinking skills. Here’s how.

Understanding positive thinking and self-talk

Positive thinking doesn’t mean that you keep your head in the sand and ignore life’s less pleasant situations. Positive thinking just means that you approach the unpleasantness in a more positive and productive way. You think the best is going to happen, not the worst.

Positive thinking often starts with self-talk. Self-talk is the endless stream of unspoken thoughts that run through your head every day. These automatic thoughts can be positive or negative. Some of your self-talk comes from logic and reason. Other self-talk may arise from misconceptions that you create because of lack of information.

If the thoughts that run through your head are mostly negative, your outlook on life is more likely pessimistic. If your thoughts are mostly positive, you’re likely an optimist — someone who practices positive thinking.

The health benefits of positive thinking

Researchers continue to explore the effects of positive thinking and optimism on health. Health benefits that positive thinking may provide include:

  • Increased life span
  • Lower rates of depression
  • Lower levels of distress
  • Greater resistance to the common cold
  • Better psychological and physical well-being
  • Reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease
  • Better coping skills during hardships and times of stress

It’s unclear why people who engage in positive thinking experience these health benefits. One theory is that having a positive outlook enables you to cope better with stressful situations, which reduces the harmful health effects of stress on your body. It’s also thought that positive and optimistic people tend to live healthier lifestyles — they get more physical activity, follow a healthier diet, and don’t smoke or drink alcohol in excess.

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CRAVING SOMETHING CHOCOLATE??? TRY THESE LOW CAL CHOCOLATE SOUFFLES!!!

 
 
 
 
Yields:
4 servings
Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
15 mins
Meal Type:
 
 
 

Chocolate Banana Souffles

These are little bowls of heaven, so creamy and rich.

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 °F (205° C). Coat 4, 6 oz ramekins with butter flavored cooking spray. Place on a baking sheet.
  2. In a medium bowl, mash bananas and vanilla together.
  3. Sift cornstarch and cocoa powder over bananas and stir well.
  4. In another medium bowl, beat egg whites with sugar until they form soft peaks.
  5. Fold 1/3 of egg whites into banana mixture. When incorporated, fold in the rest of the egg whites.
  6. Spoon mixture into ramekins. Wipe the top 1/4 inch “collar” of the ramekin to remove any excess batter so that the souffle will rise straight. Place ramekins on a baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes. Serve immediately.
270 members have added this recipe to their cookbook.
 

 

CHOCOLATE COVERED BANANA SHAKE!!

Banana-Chocolate Sipper

When you crave something sweet, cold and chocolatey.

Ingredients

Directions

  1. In a blender combine milk, frozen banana, cocoa powder, honey, and vanilla.
  2. Cover and blend until smooth and frothy.
  3. Makes 4 (8 fl oz) servings.
  4. Note: for frozen banana, peel and slice banana. Place banana slices in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with plastic wrap. Freeze about 1 hour or until firm.
  5. Note: for better drink thickness, add less milk.
 

CHANGE UP YOUR SALAD WITH CILANTRO LIME VINAIGRETTE!!

   
   
   
Yields:
8 servings
Prep Time:
10 mins
 
 
 
 

Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette

Light and flavorful salad dressing for Mexican style salads.

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Blend the dressing until smooth.
  2. Let the flavors settle together for at least 30 minutes before using (to taste).

SCRUMPTIOUS BAKED ZUCCHINI CHIPS!

   
   
   
Yields:
4 servings
Prep Time:
5 mins
Cook Time:
10 mins
 
 

Baked Zucchini Chips

A quick, healthy way to use some zucchini from your garden (or pantry).

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 475° F (250° C).
  2. In one small bowl, stir together the bread crumbs, pepper and parmesan cheese.
  3. Place the egg whites in a separate bowl.
  4. Dip zucchini slices into the egg whites, then coat the breadcrumb mixture.
  5. Place on a greased baking sheet.
  6. Bake for 5 minutes in the preheated oven, then turn over and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes, until browned and crispy.

AMAZING GRILLED PESTO AND TOMATO CHICKEN KABOBS!!!!

 

Grilled Pesto Chicken and Tomato Kebabs

 
 

These chicken kebobs just SCREAM summer, made with my skinny basil pesto and grape tomatoes. Serve this as an appetizer at your next backyard bash, or have them for dinner any night of the week with a great big salad or over pasta. 

 

 

We grow sooo much basil in my garden all summer long, so I make a lot of pesto and use it so many ways. This is super easy and can be made a day ahead, in fact the longer it marinates the better! Doubling the skewers helps keep everything in place while grilling, and makes them easier to turn. I love how the tomatoes taste after they are grilled, and they smell just divine when they come off the grill. To make my pesto skinny, I use less oil and make it without the pine nuts – but it’s still so flavorful you won’t miss them! If you’re having this for dinner, I would serve 2 skewers, rather than one with salad or grilled veggies on the side.

These are gluten free, inexpensive, low-carb, clean and simple. If you want to make them paleo, you can leave out the parmesan and swap it for pine nuts. If you love pesto as much as we do, you may also love Skinny Chicken Pesto BakeGrilled Pesto Shrimp Skewers, or this delicious Eggplant Panini with Pesto – so good!!

Grilled Pesto Chicken and Tomato Kebabs
Skinnytaste.com
Servings: 8 • Size: 1 kebab • Old Points: 4 pts • Weight Watcher Points+: 4 pt 
Calories: 147 • Fat: 7.5 g • Carb: 3 g • Fiber: 1 g • Protein: 18 g • Sugar: 0 g
Sodium: 104 mg (without salt) • Cholest: 2.5 mg

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • kosher salt and fresh pepper to taste
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1-1/4 lbs skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 24 cherry tomatoes
  • 16 wooden skewers

Directions:

In a food processor pulse basil, garlic, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper until smooth. Slowly add the olive oil while pulsing.

Combine the raw chicken with pesto and marinate a few hours in a bowl. Soak wooden skewers in water at least 30 minutes (or use metal ones to avoid this step). Beginning and ending with chicken, thread chicken and tomatoes onto 8 pairs of parallel skewers to make 8 kebabs total.

Heat the outdoor grill or indoor grill pan over medium heat until hot. Be sure the grates are clean and spray lightly with oil. Place the chicken on the hot grill and cook about 3-4 minutes; turn and continue cooking until chicken is cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes.

 

DO YOU HAVE A GREAT HEALTHY RECIPE THAT’S EASY FOR KIDS TO MAKE??

WE WOULD LIKE TO SHARE IT WITH OUR BLOG!  SEND US A MESSAGE AND WE WILL FEATURE YOUR RECIPE! 

ALSO, COMING SOON…. SUMMER SMOOTHIE CHALLENGE!!!!   DO YOU HAVE THE BEST SMOOTHIES???? IF YOU DO YOU COULD WIN A NICE LITTLE PRIZE!!!!!