Tuesday, December 2, 2014

5 Real Reasons You Are Hungry

Ever wonder why after eating through your entire fridge, then returning to the freezer for seconds, you still feel hungry? You know that whole food is more satisfying than processed junk so you opt for avocado toast or a hearty, homemade chili, but you are still left with that urge to eat more. Your unbuttoned jeans finally tell you to put down the gluten free crackers and figure out what’s really going on.

So what IS really going on?

1. You aren’t getting enough micronutrients.

Specifically from vegetables. Health articles constantly badger us to eat more seeds, nuts, beans, spices, etc., but it’s our old friends in the vegetable drawer that want to fill our bellies. While eating plenty of wholesome fats and proteins is important, vegetables give us those micronutrients we crave in much larger quantities, giving us that satisfaction we just can’t seem to achieve from eating a free range, three egg omelette with jack cheese and bacon. The more we mix up the colors, textures, and cooking style of our veggies, the more this will ring true.
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2. You’re thirsty.

Thirst is so easily mistaken as hunger. Even if you aren’t seriously dehydrated, your body might be telling you that it just needs a simple glass of water. To take it a step further, drink two glasses of water first thing in the morning and drink a glass of water 20 minutes before eating to get that true full feeling.
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3. Boredom has taken over.

When boredom strikes, hunger strikes. When there is nothing else within arms reach to give us immediate pleasure, food looks like a pretty good option. If you’re wondering how to tell whether you are eating out of hunger or boredom, ask yourself, “Am I actually hungry?” Another powerful question is, “Am I craving junk food or real food?” If the answer is “no” or “junk food” then you probably aren’t hungry and should find something else that makes you happy, like taking a walk or calling an old friend.

4. You’re tired.

When the body is tired it searches for an external energy source, like coffee and sugar. Ever notice when you stay up late you start to get hungry around 11pm? It’s your body’s way of helping you stay awake. The middle of the afternoon is another major time of the day when we start to crash and grab the closest sugar item to keep us awake. Instead of eating that cookie or bag of chips, talk a walk, do some stretches, or just go to bed if it’s that time of the day.
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5. You’re hungry for life.

There’s a concept of primary food and secondary food, secondary food being what we actually eat. Primary food is how we spend our time, who we spend it with, our connection to something greater than us and it comes before actual food for good reason. If we are just going through the motions of life-working, taking care of the kids, paying the bills-and not taking time to do what we love on a regular basis, then that lack of fulfillment will translate into hunger. Have you noticed that when you’re laughing with close friends or seeing your favorite band in concert that you aren’t hungry, or don’t notice your hunger until it’s over? It’s because you’re full of primary food. So make a list of everything that gives you joy, from baking cookies to walking the streets of Paris, and do them!

Hunger is your body’s way of telling you to take more time for yourself and enjoy your life in every moment. So if you just can’t seem to find that satisfaction you know is there, eat more vegetables, break out of your normal routine a bit, and have fun!

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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Falling In Love With Hawaii

As my WWOOF roommate, Rachael, puts it, I had my “Wow” moment today. Of course it was in one of the most crowded places on the island, swallowed by resorts reaching for the sky and cheesy Hawaiian music, but it was here nonetheless. I tend to shy away from tourist attractions in attempts to avoid large crowds who seem to have left their common sense at home, but in the heart of Waikiki beach is where it all began.

The morning started with the four of us standing on hot pavement waiting for a bus that would take at least an hour to get us where we wanted to go. We decided to walk around a little while we waited and ended up at a Hawaiian candy/smoothie store. Having very little money, I was thrilled that samples were scattered throughout the store, but each one was more disappointing than the last. This was not helping me get pumped up for Honolulu.

Finally, our bus came and the air was muggy, dirty, and tasted like stale breath. Feeling increasingly groggy from lack of fresh air, I tried to think less and less about the day to come, hoping that my money wouldn’t all be spent on over-priced tourist restaurants and chemical laden sunscreen. But boy, was I wrong.

After 2 hours on 2 busses, we finally get to the famous Waikiki section of Honolulu. The four of us stumbled into Duke’s and my three farm mates ordered the buffet, letting me mooch turkey pesto paninis, fish, and fresh Hawaiian fruit. I felt human again.

With tummy’s filled and the memory of the over-crowded bus fading, we worked our way out to the beach of blue water, blue like Chase Crawford’s eyes. Surprisingly, we managed to plop down in a relatively spacious area with easy access to a resort bathroom. A hula dancer and two musicians soundtracked our beach lounging.


Eventually, an old friend (well, as old as any friend can be when you’re 20) from high school made his way down to us with hilarious stories from high school and PBR to share. We spent hours making fun of people in their awkward teenage years and reliving tales of parties past. Something about finding a connection from home, some one to talk about “the good ol’ days”, brought so much ease and comfort to my homesick spirit.

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After the sunset, my friend went home and the four of us girls began our hunt for dinner, which is not an understatement with Marisa being vegan AND gluten free. Somehow, Jimmy Buffet’s “Cheeseburger in Paradise” is what we landed on. Still not sure how that happened, but the pineapple beignets I ordered for dinner didn’t let me doubt our decision.

It was almost 9pm at this point and we still had to figure out how to take the bus home. We brainstormed about seducing the guitarists playing at the restaurant to take us home, since we were on their way back, or sleeping on Waikiki Beach and befriending some meth heads (also not my idea). Finally, we just asked our kick ass waitress.

“Sooooo, we live in Waianae, about an hour from Honolulu, and we don’t want to take the bus back but we also don’t want to pay for a cab. How do we get home?”

Our waitress furrowed her brows and sucked her breath in through clenched teeth, “Oh man. I know that route and IT SUCKS. If you don’t want to pay for a cab, the bus is pretty much your only option. Are any of you twenty-one?” She looks at us for a moment before Marisa realized she’s twenty-two. “Okay, here’s what you gotta do: go to the store to buy some alcohol and soda so you can dump out some of the soda to pour in the alcohol. This bus ride will be a piece of cake if you’re drunk.”


Of course, we all laughed like the naive car-reliant girls that we are before we realized she’s right. Shit. We payed and headed out to wander aimlessly around Waikiki debating whether or not to take a cab.

After too much time spent trying to come to a decision, Marisa walked over to an eco cab and just asked the driver how much it would cost.

“To Waianae? Probably about $80.”

We perked our heads up faster than a dog hearing the word “bacon.”

“Only $80?! We should totally do that. My phone says the bus will take SIX HOURS.” Haley looked up from the screen, hopeful about the cab. The cabs waiting in line behind our driver started honking and giving us dirty looks. Marisa, being from New York, asked the driver for his card so he could get out of the way.

After another ten minutes of debating (we found out the price was actually $130) and calling the cab driver at least twice, we decided to take it. Yet, again, Marisa was the one to call him.

“Hi. It’s the annoying girl. We decided that we need a ride.”

Ten minutes later he showed up and after we finished giggling about which Pandora station to pick, we grilled him with questions.

Marisa, sitting in the front seat asked him about his birthday, rising moon, and zodiac sign, “Aired, Cancer, Scorpio, Capricorn, Leo?”

“Nope,” he said, letting his irritation fade.

“Libra, Taurus, Gemini?”


Finally, I say, “Pisces, duh.”

“Yes. My birthday is in March.”

Barely giving him time to finish his sentence, Marisa blurts out, “Can I read your palm?!”

“Ummmm, sure?” He didn’t really seem to know how to react.

As soon as she gave the first description, the barriers between all of us came crashing down, like concrete being demolished.  She then went on to read mine, Haley’s, and Rachael’s, predicting our love life to the tee.

“After this turn our house is on the right, but you can just drop us off here,” Marisa told him.

He looked over at her and said, with a little uncertainty in his voice, “You can call me any time. Not just for a ride, but to, you know, chat.” We all awed at him taking such a liking to us when we started out as the passengers from hell.

We squeamishly ran down the dark driveway, still fearful of mice, lizards, and other mysterious tropical creatures of the night, squealing and giggling, but secretly enjoying these last moments of our adventure.

Opening the front door officially ended the day, but began our tight bond and my love for this trip. Any doubts in my head wondering if this is really where I am supposed to be were left in the cab headed back to Honolulu. The next 6 weeks are going to rock.

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Friday, October 3, 2014

All I Want To Do Is Farm And Write

Dead and brown outside, but my body feels so clean inside. Hawaii is such a contrast of counting down the days until I can go home and pure love for getting my hands dirty. I kind of hate it here, in the way I always hate travelling; “introverted homebody” should be my middle name. The more I accept my dread of the next 47 days, the more I fall into the sweating and weeding and deep down exhaustion. Strangely enough, I love the manual labor. Seriously, I was kind of bummed to stop weeding tonight.


All I want to do is farm and write. Tomorrow, we are going into Honolulu and I’m absolutely dreading it, but I’ll do it anyways because I know that I need to make the most of my time in Hawaii. “Will I ever come back?” is the mantra that keeps playing over and over in my head, like the chants we did in our morning meditation.

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Just 2 days of this lifestyle and I’m ready to live this way forever: meditation and yoga in the morning followed by 3 hours of farming with a 5 hour break before another 2 hours of farming. Yoga, farm, nap, farm, write, sleep, repeat. Just don’t make me go to Honolulu. Please.

As I watch the sun go down behind the kind of clouds Pillsbury would make, I start to feel such gratitude for where I am and what’s to come in these next 6 ½ weeks. The opening of my soul has begun and it’s powerful. No more stickiness in my belly. No more fatigue. No more mindless eating. In my discomfort I’m filling up on knowledge that what I’m doing with my time actually matters to the survival of humanity.

I’ve travelled enough to know that this is how it works: the beginning is awful--all I want to do is go home and drink my fermenting kombucha--but as time goes on, I grow from being so far out of my comfort zone. It pushes me to find more of myself in the way that only those once-in-a-lifetime teachers can.

So bring on the growing and the misery that holds it’s hand. I’m ready for you and everything you have to teach me about the way I want to live my life.


Monday, September 15, 2014

So you're ready to find your happiest self?

Unfortunately, sugar is just plain bad and adds unwanted fat to our bodies. We've been told for so long that fat makes us fat, but in fact, sugar does, not to mention it brings down our mood and is as addictive as cocaine, if not more. If you're still not quite sure if this is right for you, let me tell you some unpleasant signs that you may be experiencing if you have a sugar problem:
  • Bloating, stiff joints, feeling puffy
  • Skin issues like acne and eczema
  • Brain fog and lack of concentration
  • Not being able to lose weight
  • Mood swings and depression
  • Not being able to get enough sleep and having a hard time getting out of bed in the morning
  • Strong cravings for refined grains and sweets
  • Fatigue after eating
  • Fatigue in general
The nasty side effects of sugar make it hard for us to get the most out of every day, leaving us feeling tired, cranky, and less than our best. Fortunately for you, my cleanse will help you rid your body of toxic sugar and give you the opportunity to get all of these amazing benefits:

  • Increased energy that will last you through the afternoon slump
  • Help you get to your natural weight
  • Healthier, glowing skin
  • Better sleep quality
  • Lowered risk for disease, especially diabetes
  • Less distraction from intense food cravings
  • Less mood swings
  • Better brain function
  • Reducing inflammation in the body
    • less bloat, acne, and stiff joints

Now that you're on board, here's the details on what I give you to help you look and feel better than ever:
  • An e-book to keep and use for as long as you want
  • Recipes and meal plans
  • Valuable information to last a lifetime
  • A whole new level of understanding yourself 
This is an incredible journey you are about to embark on, finally learning the real reasons that we crave sugar and how to break free from its tight hold on our mind. By the end of these 21 days, you'll feel empowered, energized, and totally jazzed to share your new knowledge. 

Now that we've covered the fun stuff, let's talk money. The cost of the program is $9 via https://www.etsy.com/listing/217696917/21-day-cleanse-to-feel-happy-healthy-and. If you have any more questions or are ready to sign up, please don't hesitate to shoot me an email at ksharford@yahoo.com. I'm totally addicted to my iPhone, so it won't take me long to respond. 

I can't wait to hear from you!


Healthy Holidays Workshop!

I'm hosting an awesome workshop about how to stay healthy this holiday season without depriving yourself of your favorite treats.

Here's why you should join us:

  • Just thinking about Christmas parties makes you tired
  • Barely staying awake on the drive home from Thanksgiving is the norm
  • Eating the plate of holiday candy your neighbor brought over as a meal is totally justified because you saw a walnut in the fudge
  • Guilt for indulging keeps you from truly enjoying time with family and friends
  • You hide the scale from Halloween until New Years
  • You don't expect to button your pants again until February

Here's what we will be doing:

  • Talking about why the holidays zap so much of our energy, leading to extra pounds and how to keep our precious energy
  • Going over different ways to avoid overeating that actually works; no guilt tripping or calorie counting
  • Getting awesome recipes and baking tips so we can still enjoy our favorite holiday treats
  • Getting my online 21 Day Sugar Cleanse program sent to your inbox for free

If you have any more questions or are ready to sign up feel free to send me an email at ksharford@yahoo.com or visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/healthy-holidays-workshop-tickets-13471328105 

I'm totally addicted to my iPhone so rest assured you will get a timely response.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Tribute to Toner

Every now and then, we come across people who really speak to us on that deeper level of human existence, without even trying. They reach a hand into our souls, not to take anything, just to write their name as if it were a fogged up mirror. So far in my 20 short years on this planet, I’ve only come across 3.

Last week, at the beloved Sonora Farmers Market, I made two trips in hopes that I would run into my college English professor, Jim Toner. And that I did. For at least fifteen minutes we stood baking like cinnamon rolls on the asphalt catching up about his year spent abroad with his son and wife and my major discoveries as a young adult. It was one of those few experiences when the elements couldn’t matter less because I was just so overcome with happiness. It barely felt as if a week had passed; we picked up exactly where we left off.

Obviously, I told him that I have a blog and he winced about neglecting his.

“How about we make a challenge?”

With a slight gasp, I answer, “Of course!”

“If you write four blog posts in the next seven days, I will buy you a cucumber and slice it for you, right here at the market. And if I write four by next week…”

“I’ll write you an honorary blog post!” Little does he know it’s already on my to-do list of blog ideas. He draws his hand up to his mouth to think and I’m convinced he hates it.

“Yeeeeees. YEEEEES. YES!”


So here I am at 7:09am, an hour before I leave for the farmers market, writing his tribute (which I am counting as my fourth blog post, oops). Let’s get to it.

  1. You taught me the value of saying “yes” and how this one little word can drastically improve the quality of life.
  2. You showed me how natural writing is when you just let go and only think of the next sentence.
  3. Which leads me to teeka-teeka. Involuntarily, this is how I now approach everything. Just think about the next kayak paddle or focus on this round of sun salutation and even taking the dishes one at a time. Teeka-teeka is how I write, clean, exercise, everything.
  4. You’ve shown me how wonderful it is to open up my heart on paper and to everyone I meet. You opened my eyes to a world of people being themselves completely and allowing human nature to rule their thoughts, not unnatural societal standards.
  5. You’ve taught me how natural it is to love each other as fellow human beings and there’s no reason to hold back showing our love.

Jim Toner, I could continue forever with this list, but it is time for me comb my hair that’s sticking out in directions I didn’t even know existed and finish my detox tea so I can claim my pre-sliced cucumber and revel in all the glorious words we somehow managed to put down on digital paper this week. Thank you for the inspiration to keep writing, no matter how serious or silly, and I will forever be one of your blog apostles, cherishing every word that comes from your anti-handyman fingertips.


P.S. I won’t forget to feed my rabbit if you don’t forget to feed your pillow. Deal?

Friday, July 25, 2014

Cucumber, cucumber!

Cucumber, cucumber!
Where art thou now?
Cucumber, cucumber!
There’s sweat on my brow.

When I opened the fridge
You were nowhere to be found
To slice through your ridge
Is better than to be crowned

Your sweet, tender tongue
Is all I desire
Your siren has been sung
Step away from the fire!

The holiest of vegetables
And better than any fruit
Some give you bad labels
To me you’re a flute

The disappointment is overwhelming
How ever will I carry on?
This sorrow is helming
Like an offended Don

My life can’t continue
This ear of corn is looking sharp
All I have to--but wait! What is that?

Can it be?
My beloved cucumber
Next to the ghee?

What are you doing out here?
You silly little thing
By the beer
And the coil spring

Never again will I lose you
For there is the cutting board
Time to say “Adieu”
My mouth you are moving toward.