Monday, January 23, 2012

Tea Tuesday with Food for Thought

"If tea is to be enjoyed, tea cups will most certainly become involved.
I would draw a line at avoiding the tea because of the vessel."  ~ Unknown

Since many are celebrating the Chinese New Year, I would like to show this Blue Dragon Tea Set that I found online. The Dragon is on one side and a phoenix on the other. It's an artistic depiction of destruction and rebirth, and a unique take on the ancient philosophy of Yin and Yang. This could allow one to reflect back on all the mysteries of life.

This Chinese New Year is the Year of the Dragon!


Have you ever wondered if you could possibly be a Pre-Diabetic? We know that diabetes is rampant in the United States. My husband is a Type 2. We found this out a few years ago when he had a foot infection between his toes. His foot started to hurt really bad one day, so the next day we went to the doctor and his foot was already turning black. The doctor told him he was a diabetic and that he would probably lose his toe and a big possibility to lose his foot. They did drastic measures to save his foot by giving him high doses of antibiotics by IV everyday for over a month. We got his diet in order and his foot was saved. If you are wondering if you could be pre-diabetic, then by all means see your doctor.

Instead of us waiting for test results or a trip to the emergency room, we should play an active role in our own health. Take an active role in wellness! We could live more simply.

There are so many labor-saving devices (which we are mainly very thankful for them all), they have actually taken away our way of exercise. These everyday behaviors use to keep us active and healthy. Now we are more sedentary and find easier ways to get things done.

My friend Marianne just said to me the other day, "Lawn blowers should be outlawed! Pick up a dang broom and get some exercise for heaven's sake!!"  She was a little annoyed at some activity going on outside while she was taking a nap, but her comment is really actually RIGHT-ON!!  Every now-n-then I do just that. I get my broom and I sweep my side yard. It works better than a rake. But I'm not sure that I could do the whole yard. LOL!

According to research, you may be suffering from pre-diabetes 
if you have any three of the following:

  • Most of your excess weight is concentrated around your waistline. For example, if you're a woman and your waist is 35" or more, and 40" or more if you are a man.
  • Your BMI (Body Mass Index) is 27 or higher. If you don't know, type in "BMI" in your search engine to find a tool that calculates it for you.
  • Your HDL ("goo") cholesterol is less than 50 mg/dL for women or less than 40 mg/dL for men.
  • Your triglycerides are greater than 150 mg/dL. 
  • Your blood pressure is higher than 130/85 mmHg.
  • Your fasting blood sugar is greater than 85 mg/dL.
  • Your A1C is higher than 5.5.
  • Other possible symptoms may be uncontrollable sugar cravings and feeling fatigued.
Pre-diabetes is your body's cry for help and it can be turned around by diet and activity levels. It's possible to improve insulin resistance and reduce weight according to a recent study. The secret?  Avoid simple carbohydrates (bread, rice, potatoes, and pastas) for two days every week. This study involved women who were at high risk for developing breast cancer, but the results improved weight and reversed insulin resistance by 22 percent for the two days on low carbs and no more than 650 calories total on each day. To me, that's very FEW calories and I wouldn't advise this without a doctor's approval. 

 The other study was at 14 percent with no calorie restrictions (allowed to eat as much protein and good fats as they wanted on the two days). The last study had a result of 4 percent, placed on  a Mediterranean diet of 1,500 calories. All members lost weight, but the best results occurred in the first group.

Other important things to do are to choose the right beverages. Cut out the diet and energy drinks, sugared coffees and most juices. Have instead Green Tea! Growing research shows that drinking two to four cups of green tea daily prevents high blood sugar from damaging various organs in the body. It also increases weight reduction by boosting your metabolism. It's good to be a tea drinker!!

It is said that unsweetened cranberry juice is another smart beverage choice. This drink has already shown to benefit the heart and urinary tract.  In a new study it was found to improve several markers of pre-diabetes women. Using 28 ounces of fresh, filtered water with 1/2 cup unsweetened cranberry juice and drinking it all day has great health benefits.

EXERCISE, EXERCISE, EXERCISE!  You have to move it or lose it!!
If you don't like the thoughts of a routine exercise, then try dancing around in the house. Put on some good music that MOVES you! While you are watching TV, do a few sit-ups on the edge of your couch. MARCH into your kitchen or bathroom and back; or around your coffee table. The other day I did some lunges through my kitchen. I didn't think it was doing any good, but I tell you, I could really feel it the next day and I only did a few. So any little bit helps!

Maybe do like my friend Marianne said, go out and SWEEP your yard!

Here's to your health!!

I am linking with Sandi for Tea Cup Tuesday.


  1. Hi Brenda,
    the dragon tea things look great. Good idea to chose them for the dragon year. Thank you for sharing all this interesting informations.
    Best greetings, Johanna

  2. Hi, Brenda...beautiful teapot!! And Happy Chinese New Year to all!!

    Your post is chock full of great ideas and good information. In fact it's inspired me to lay off of excess sugar this week, especially at work where I am totally tempted to give in to stress cravings.

    I love unsweetened cranberry juice, and it is sooo healthy. Since it's unsweetened most people find it hard on the pallet, so when I drink it I dilute it with cool water...very refreshing and not as 'sour'. I haven't tried this yet, but adding some spices to it may help with the taste; such as cinnamon, cloves,and the like.

    COL...that you mentioned the lawn blower quote...sweeping off the driveway and sidewalk can be exhilarating and much quieter; great exercise, and less noise pollution.

    I always look forward to your great posts.

    Love you,
    Marianne xo

  3. Hi Brenda,

    Happy "tea time"! The dragon tea set you found does look great. I am happy to know drinking green tea helps prevent high blood pressure. Wishing you a wonderful day.

  4. Happy Tea Day, Brenda! I drink a lot of green tea and Hubby drinks a lot of cranberry juice. You have provided us with some great information today. Your tea set is unique! Thank you for sharing and joining me for tea.


  5. Happy Lunar New Year! Love the dragon tea pots. Thank you for the great health information. Happy Tea Day!

  6. Pretty tea set...Great healthy information. I love green tea, especially matcha and usutcha~ ENjoy the end of January!

  7. Happy Chinese New Year! it's a water dragon year! and i love your chinese tea set! oh thank goodness i picked up cranberry juice yesterday when we went shopping! I'm soooo glad that your hubby's foot was saved! reading your post always make me aware when other times i forgot and eat junk! Thank you soo much for the helpful information and sharing with us! i'm going to put on some music and dance in the house now! exercise, exercise!!!


  8. I'm off to put the kettle on for a pot of green tea!

  9. Hi Brenda,
    Love the tea sets you share. So unique. And, all your info about Diabetics is right on. My mother had it and I know first hand the challenge. Thankfully my family and I all have good numbers, but I am very diligent on our diet and activity. I am so happy and thankful for you and your hubby that he is under control and did not lose his foot. As I was becoming an artist, I worked in podiatry surgery and I tell you, we had to do surgery on many a patient and it was very difficult.
    Thank you for sharing your great advice and details. It really does matter.

    Hugs to you my friend, Celestina Marie XO

  10. Hi Brenda: I just love visiting your blog. You never no what you will be sharing about. I am Diabetic and control my sugar with diet. It is the hardest thing I have ever done. I have never heard of the green tea benefits. Thank you so much for sharing and for your wonderful and interesting blog. Have a great week dear friend. Hugs, Martha

  11. Thanks for the information, Brenda. I'm so glad that your husband's foot is alright now. Isn't tea time the best? I have been taking time out each day to have a cup of tea. It is very calming. You know, we saw one of the Chinese Dragons at a festival one time just galloping along the crowds. It was such a grand sight!!
    ~Sheri at Red Rose Alley