Epigenetics

Huh? Epigenetics, what’s that even mean!

That was my exact thought when I first heard the word epigenetic in my Functional Nutrition courses. I was literally mind blown to learn that Epigenetics is the study of how our behaviors, environment and life choices can alter the way our genes work. Maybe read that line again! Yes you can alter your genes with your thoughts and with what you choose to put at the end of your fork! While epigenetics are reversible and can’t change your DNA sequence, they can change how your body reads the DNA sequence. A little scientific I know, but I’ll try to put it in terms that helped me understand it better.

Our genes only have 5% to do with determing our risk of developing a particular disease. That means 95% has to do with our behaviors, environments and lifestyle choices. That doesn’t mean that if you do develop a disease it’s 95% your fault. A lot of people cannot control their environment. It does mean that we can greatly influence our genes with what we choose to put in our mouths and our outlook on life. So when I hear people say things like, “My whole family is obese so I am obese,” doesn’t fly. Or my mother and grandfather died of heart disease so I probably will too. Here’s the thing….if you know you have these traits in your family, whether that be heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimers, ADHD, MS, Parkinson’s, the list goes on and on, then you actually have the upper hand. You know you can alter your genes with the your life choices. Epigenetics can turn a gene on or off. If you have heart disease in your family, you can choose to exercise, eat well, live as stress free as possible and keep your waist line down. By choosing this way of life, you can alter that gene in a positive way. If you choose to ignore the fact that your family has a history of diabetes, and you eat a highly processed diet, a lot of sugar and carbohydrates, live a stressful life, then your epigenetic will be influenced in a negative way and you may very likely turn that gene on.

Epigenetics and Pregnancy

One of the most awesome things a mom to be can do for her unborn child is change their behavior before they become pregnant. You see a mother’s food choices, such as eating a healthy diet, avoiding too much sugar, and living as stress free as possible can actually change the unborn Childs epigenetics. Your baby doesn’t have a choice is in this, it’s up to you to impact it’s genes in a positive or negative way. These changes to your babies epigenetic can impact the child for decades and may make your child more likely to get certain diseases.

Epigenetics and Aging

I have been literally so excited to learn that aging doesn’t have to be a terrible thing. We’ve been conditioned to believe that menopause for women and aging in general for men and women is awful. We’ve been told menopause is terrible and all the symptoms that go with it are just the way it is. Men have been conditioned to believe that as they age they’ll lose some of their libido, their bellies will just naturally get bigger, and our mental prowess will begin to decline. But it’s totally not true! We can absolutely impact aging with our behaviors, life choices, and amount of stress we allow in our lives. I’ve personally experienced how changing my diet and lifestyle habits has impacted my moods. How choosing the right foods and supplements has changed peri-menopause symptoms. Of course, it’s not all fun, and I’ve had a few symptoms that were challenging, but it’s definitely not the normal symptoms that I’ve been conditioned to believe were going to happen!

Ultimately, it’s up to you. You play the most crucial part in how your life plays out. I’d love to help you with getting on the right track! If you’re interested in working one on one with me to learn the best choices for your particular health and mental needs, let me know by setting up an appointment below. Health isn’t black and white and neither should your healthcare be. Everyone has different needs and conventional medicine doesn’t address those, but I will!

Cause we’re not there yet, but perhaps together, we’ll get there Soon Enuff…..

Sincerely,

Amy Lopez, FNC

To set up an appointment with me click the link below:

https://calendly.com/grounded-inthe-present/the-powerful-fork-client-intake?month=2021-10

You Choose

Your Choices

Did you know you can halt the disease process by learning to control your thoughts, or should I say by not allowing your thoughts to control you.

When you allow your thoughts to linger in the past, your brain doesn’t recognize that it’s the past, it thinks it’s right now and affects every part of your body. It sends messages through the vagus nerve to your gut and that gets your stomach all upset and in knots, causing all sorts of gut trouble, including inflammation. An inflamed gut wreaks havoc. You know that feel good hormone, Seratonin, well, guess what, that comes from your gut, and an inflamed gut blocks the production of serotonin.

The by product of your choices

Now that your thoughts have gotten you all upset the ball is in motion. Now your thoughts are sending messages to your brain that it is stressed and your body starts producing cortisol because it wants to rescue you from this stress. And remember your gut is lowering the production of serotonin already. This release of cortisol causes you to crave sugary, salty foods, which, if you give in, cause you to feel even worse. This can be a vicious cycle, especially if your thoughts are in control of you day in and day out. It can really impact your health regardless of how well you may be trying to eat.

“Only you choose, every day, every hour, how your life will play out. You have more control over developing disease than the genes you were born with. Choose well.” Dr. Mary Hyman

So what to do…..

What I practice doing when thoughts of a past trauma start to creep in is sit with the thoughts from the place of a third party. Reminding myself that I am no longer experiencing the trauma, the trauma has passed. I don’t necessarily try to ignore it, instead I try to love myself through it. Deep breathing has drastically helped me. I find that I can free my mind of most thoughts by concentrating on my breath. Inhaling through my nose to a count of 4, holding that breath for a count of 2, then sighing it deeply out of my mouth to a count of 6. I only practice this for a few moments, then I get up and move. I have found that moving, whether that is doing yoga, going for a walk, a run, a bike ride, or simply walking around in my yard just looking at nature brings me back to the present moment.

Stay Present

I’d be misleading you if I didn’t also tell you that you need to practice staying present. Any time I feel my thoughts starting to take over, you know, that rambling voice in my head gets on a roll, I bring myself back to a state of aware presence. Reminding myself that I am here in this space, wherever it is, right now. Reminding myself that I am the observer of my thoughts, my thoughts are not who I am. Usually bringing some silence, even if it’s noisy around me, helps me focus on the present moment.

Cause you know what, we may not be there yet, but perhaps together, we’ll get there Soon Enuff.

The Powerful Fork

Amy Lopez, FNC

The Art of Being Okay…

Are You Okay?

Have you ever really thought about how you need your life to be in order to be okay? Have you thought about how often you are attempting to create safety and control by defining how you need life to be in order to be okay? I’m here to tell you that this way of thinking, though we all do it, is how the world becomes a frightening place.

While attempting to be in control doesn’t sound frightening, it is. When you think this way, life becomes “me against life” very quickly. We all have fears and instead of facing them and letting them pass, we try to create scenarios in which we never have to face our fears. We start to feel like this person isn’t acting the way they should, and this event is not unfolding the way you want it to. You see your past as disturbing and your future loaded with potential problems. You even have set definitions of desirable and undesirable, good and bad, and they all came about because of your need of how you feel things need to be in order to be okay.

Is Your Fear Okay?

So how is it that we come to this idea that life isn’t okay just how it is? Or that it won’t be okay the way it will be? Who taught us that the way life naturally unfolds isn’t all right? Well the answer is ….Fear! Most people don’t understand that fear is just a thing. Another object in the world that we are all capable of experiencing. And we choose to do one of two things with fear: We recognize we have it, and thus, start working on it, or we keep it inside and try to hide from it. The problem is, life is ever changing, and so at some point something will eventually trigger your fear, no matter how safe you try to keep yourself and how in control you attempt to be at orchestrating your life.

The easiest thing to do is stop fighting against life. When life pushes you to the edge, and you feel that fear creeping up inside you, simply recognize it for what it is. It’s an object. The fear is not who you are, you are the one recognizing that you have the fear. If you can look at your fear from a state of mental clarity, you can make the best decision in the moment and the fear will pass. The problem occurs when you let the fear distract you and draw you in. When this happens, you can become totally lost in the fear. It could last a few moments, hours, days and sometimes even years. Once you become lost in the fear, things head down hill quickly. Many times when we are lost thoughts come into our minds that want to get us out of here as quickly as possible. You may start packing your bags, quit your job, or begin verbally abusing someone that happens to be near by. The thing is, any decision made out of fear, without mental clarity isn’t going to be a good decision at all. Most assuredly, you are going to regret any decisions made when you are lost in fear. See fear is okay, if you learn to let it pass, and it will pass. But the moment you don’t, well….then fear isn’t okay anymore.

Letting Go from the Beginning is the Best Way to Stay Okay

So what if you had let the fear/disturbance go right from the beginning? What if no matter what happened, you just turned your eyes upward and relaxed your heart? What if you could stay in that place of mental clarity, staying present in the moment, and just watching your fear or whatever disturbance come and go. You see if you don’t give it your attention, it can’t disrupt your energy, it can’t draw you in. But if you do fall, don’t worry, just get yourself back up and move along as soon as possible. Always, always, try to let go as soon as you’re aware that you’ve gotten drawn in. You’ll undoubtedly have ups and downs along the way, we all do, but this can be a great reminder that whatever is holding you down, fear, jealousy, loneliness, can become the source that eventually raises you up.

Cause I’m not there yet, but perhaps together, we’ll get there Soon Enuff….

Sincerely,

Amy Lopez

Check out the tab above to find my books, “Present Ground” and “Soon Enuff,” as well as free PDF’s on how to live a more present life.

I AM

“I am the way, the truth, the life.” Know who said that? Correct, his name was Jesus. He also said, “All things I do and greater things you will also do.” You see, Jesus is the personification of pure consciousness. I Am, is the way, the truth, the life.

I AM more than the person

If you only know yourself as the person: the mother, the wife, the daughter, the school teacher, the nurse, the doctor, the girlfriend, the sister, etc. then you are disillusioned. What happens when you are no longer the mother? Your child passes, or they simply grow up and don’t need you in the same way? What happens if your spouse passes or leaves you? What happens when your parents pass away and you are no longer the daughter? What happens when you lose your job and are no longer the Dr., teacher, nurse? What should happen is a grieving period but you are never lost. Because who you are, your true essence isn’t tied to any of those things. You are still you, you are still present. Your true essence is The I AM. All these other titles emerge from that. You are pure consciousness. Only when you know your essence identity can you fulfill your true purpose.

The caterpillar doesn’t become a butterfly, it already is the butterfly. The butterfly emerges from the caterpillar.

A deeper sense of purpose

We can all align ourselves with the deeper purpose of the universe. It’s not a religion, it’s a realization. When you learn to stay present in each moment, it’s the most freeing feeling. I like to think of my, I Am, as a beautiful mystical figure that sits in the center of my chest, my soul. This is where it watches all that is going on around me and in me. I see the thoughts and I let them go. I watch conflicts arise and can choose my reactions from a place of consciousness instead of reacting unconsciously. I watch the wife emerge from me as I take care of my husband and home. I smile as the mother emerges and sends my grown children funny or inspirational messages. I delight as the coach emerges from me and teaches others around me. But I don’t attach myself to these things. I know at some point they will all be gone. And I know that what will remain is me, I am.

Cause I’m not there yet, but perhaps, together, we’ll get there “Soon Enuff.”

Sincerely,

Amy

If you’d like to read more inspirational quotes that help inspire you to live a more present life, my book, “Present Ground” is on sale this month. You can find it by clicking on the above tab or worldwide on Amazon!

Thinking Backwards

“It’s something that I thought I’d never say, but today,

I think I’m going to think backwards.” –Amy Lopez–

A backwards day

When I wake up in the morning I always enjoy a few minutes of silence while looking out the window, or if the weather is nice, I sit outside, getting some much needed morning light on my face. I am very present and try not to let my thoughts about all the things I need to get done today take over my mind. But recently I thought I’d experiment with something new.

Instead of thinking about what I needed to get done first, I thought about how I want to feel when I climb back into my comfy bed tonight at the end of the day. I want to feel satisfied and happy with all the choices I make today. I want to feel at peace and worry free. And then I went backwards.

Backwise Planning

I’ll give you an example of what I like to call “backwise planning.” Around 10:00pm I slip into my comfy pj’s and do a little night time yoga. A nice stretch for my hips and back. At 9:00pm I turn my phone to “Do Not Disturb” and stay off social media and email. At 8:30 I cozy up on the couch and watch a program on tv. At 8:00 I start to dim the lights around the house. At 7:30 as soon as I get home from work, I wash my face and have a nice cup of decaffeinated bedtime chai. Between 3-7pm while I’m at work I have so much fun with the kids at the gym. I react to the parents coming into my facility with gratitude and am present with each person speaking to me. Between 10am and 2pm I enjoy my day. A nice workout to get my cardio up then yoga to calm down and relax. I eat good and choose only the foods that I know are going to be healthy for me. All my interactions are conscious ones. I don’t open my mouth without thinking first. Between 8am-10am I enjoy my morning coffee/tea and reading/writing. I do a short meditation and some breathwork. I sit outside for at least 10 minutes, weather permitting, if not I look out the window at the beautiful morning I’ve been given.

You see, if you have a goal in mind, it makes it much easier to stay in that mindset all day. Basically, you are present in each moment. When things start to get stressful with your kids or at your job, think about your goal of feeling at peace and then make your reactions conscious ones. That’s ultimately the only way to go to bed at night happy and satisfied with the choices you made, with the reactions you had to outside circumstances. It’s the only way to peace.

I recently read a book and highly recommend it, “Active Hope,” by Joanna Macey & Chris Johnstone. In one section Joanna talks about thinking about what your preferred future looks like in say, 30 years. Then starting there in the future and working backwards to help you see how to get there. And it made me wonder why this same concept wouldn’t work daily, and well, it does work! I hope this idea helps you too!

If you’d like more ideas on how to live a more present life, check out my course “10 Days to a More Present You.” It’s available by clicking the tab Course Library.

Cause I’m not there yet, but perhaps together, we’ll get there Soon Enuff…

Amy

If you’re interested, here is the link to the book, Active Hope. https://www.activehope.info/

The Journey

Journey Alone

I hope no one ever promised you it would be easy….you see, the most important journey, my love, is done alone.

Phases of the Journey

You’ll go through phases of sadness when you realize things should have been different. You’ll struggle with some realities you never knew before. You’ll uncover secrets that you’ll wish would have stay buried. But in the end, the journey to finding who you truly are, well, that starts right now.

The real journey is always right now

Regardless of your past, regardless how you were raised, regardless of previous relationships….right here, right now in this moment is where you decide your next step, you decide what your story will be today. So do the necessary work to let go of the past, to use what you learn as possible lessons moving forward, but don’t dwell there. Tell your mind to move along. Experience the sadness, even the happiness of past memories and then leave them where they belong…..

Cause I’m not there yet, but perhaps together, we’ll get there, Soon Enuff.

“The most important journey, my love, is done alone.”

-Amy Lopez-

Get Still

Get still & set an intention

It’s a new day and a brand new beautiful week. Can you take just a few moments for yourself? A little quiet time in meditation.

When we float through our days and weeks with no clear purpose it makes it easy to get lost in our thoughts. It’s so important to take a few moments for yourself every morning, but especially at the beginning of the week.

“Still Time”

You are the most important person in your life. You deserve some “still time.” Get still, write down what your intention for what you want to happen this week is. Then each day, think about that intention. It makes it so much easier to stick to something when you’ve written it down. When you recognize the importance of setting intentions, of making manifestations, and affirmations. You owe it to yourself, to your spouse, lover, friends, family, etc. To be your best you, you’ve got to invest in yourself.

Cause we’re not there yet, bur perhaps together, we’ll get there…...Soon Enuff!

Hey guys, I just uploaded a brand new course in the Course Library! It’s a 4 week course on the Transformational Power of Acceptance. Click the tab above for more information!

Life’s not Static

Life isn’t static and neither are your life choices

So many struggle with feeling like they’re out of place or that they’re not doing what they are supposed to be doing. This happens to us all at some point. It happens to those that have spent years and years in college or years and years in training to be in a profession that at one point they felt called to be in. And guess what…..it’s totally normal!

Life is in constant motion. Everyday brings about change. So why would we ever think our Life Purpose wouldn’t change? Now it may be that your Life Purpose is similar, maybe you’ve always felt called to “Help others.” And perhaps you began as a therapist, but now you’re feeling called to quit the job force and write self help books. Maybe you were a Doctor in a prestigious hospital but now you feel called to travel to foreign countries and give your services for free. The list is endless. The point is, sometimes we need to say goodbye to callings too.

Your life purpose doesn’t necessarily stay the same.

There can be goodbyes to callings too.” -Amy Lopez-

Follow your dreams

It’s okay to say goodbye to what you thought would be your life long purpose. It’s okay to start new. And it’s okay if you start new many many times. I think it’s important to listen to your intuition, to meditate on what is calling you and then to pursue your passions with everything you’ve got in you.

After all, life is meant to be lived out loud, to be lived in the present moment. And in the present moment we can’t see into the future. All we can do is what we feel called to do right now, maybe that changes tomorrow and maybe it doesn’t.

If you’d like help with discovering your life purpose in this moment schedule an appointment with me, I’d be glad to discuss with you 🙂

Cause we’re not there yet, but perhaps together we will be, Soon Enuff…..

https://linktr.ee/amylopez

Are you Settling because you think you don’t deserve more…..

Settling or Accepting

Okay, let’s not get things twisted…..settling is not the same as accepting. When you accept a life situation for what it is, it doesn’t mean you’re being passive, or weak, or giving up and it definitely doesn’t mean you’re settling. Actually, it’s the opposite. You see when you’re aware of something and you acknowledge it and accept it for what it is, only then can you decide if a change needs to be made or not. After all, how can you change something or heal from something that you’re in denial of? Something that you don’t acknowledge can’t be let go of or healed from.

If you’re simply resigning yourself to be miserable or you’re settling on something or someone just to make everyone else happy, or not to, “Rock the boat,” then you are essentially telling yourself, “I am not deserving of anything better.” But here’s the thing, you are deserving, we all are! We all deserve happiness, joy, and to live a fulfilling life.

AAA

Who do you call when you are broken down on the side of the road? Many of us call Triple A. It’s a great service if you’re stranded with no other options. So what do you do in your personal life when you have an internal disturbance? When you feel a resistance to something? When you’re struggling to forgive, either yourself or another. We can use the same concept, AAA for ourselves:

Aware: You become aware of the resistance/disturbance in your life

Acknowledge: You acknowledge the disturbance or resistance in your life

Accept: You accept it for what it is

This is a lifelong practice but I’m living proof that it is truly transformational when you put AAA into practice.

I have a brand new four week course for exactly this practice. It’s called “The Transformational Power of Acceptance.” It’s a 4 part pre recorded video sequence. You’ll receive the videos to watch at your own leisure plus you’ll have them for a lifetime. You’ll also have access to a private Facebook Group that is only for the participants of this course to engage with each other or ask questions of me. You’ll also receive a 30 minute private zoom conference with me as well as a 30 minute group meeting with all the participants in this course. If you’re interested in learning how to let go, how to heal from the past, how to live a more authentic and healthy you inside and out, then join me for this transformational course. The link is below if you’re interested!

Cause we’re not there yet….but perhaps together, we’ll get there, “Soon Enuff.”

https://view.flodesk.com/emails/6033ebd4b05f940e23925ea2

Live Present,

Amy

The Power of Acceptance

Explore your Power

As a young woman I often wondered how some did it. How were they just happy most of the time. How did they get over a break up and just move on to the next one with seemingly no emotions? How did they handle the accident that took their loved one and just kept going? How can they be wheel chair bound after being so athletic and still seem so filled with joy? After years of studying this, while I myself struggled with so many life situations, I found the answer is Acceptance.

So I can already hear some of you now….”If I accept a situation then I’m giving up!” Let me start right off with saying that Acceptance of the situation is not the same as giving up. You can accept a situation and still choose to make changes. So throw that notion right out the door 🙂

How can we Harness the Power of Acceptance

So how do we do it? How do we accept things when we simply don’t want to?

Acknowledge, explore, embrace. These three things are key. You see the problem is unless we acknowledge the reality of our life in this moment we can’t accept it, we just keep believing a lie. If we never explore our feelings, and we just push them away every time they come up, then we can never deal with them and leave them in the past. And until we embrace the reality we are in right now, until we fully accept it, we can’t decide what to do about it. You see change comes when you accept things as they are. Once you accept them, you decide what to do with them or about them.

“When was the last time you explored your feelings

instead of pushing them away….” -Amy-

It’s not easy, and it definitely takes some work but the process is truly transformational.

The Transformational Power of Acceptance

I’ve put together a four week course with every day exercises to teach you the Transformational Power of Acceptance.

We’ll learn acceptance in everyday little things: the mundane tasks that you dread, the relationships you’re struggling with, your career, your life path, aging, children. I’ll teach you skills that can apply to every life situation.

I am living proof of the transformation and I can’t wait to work with you through this course! I hope you’ll check it out 🙂

Cause we’re not there, but perhaps together, we’ll get there “Soon Enuff!”

https://view.flodesk.com/pages/602d3a9d54e757e2524dbcdd