Image and Lifestyle

Fashion, Style, and Professional Impression in Hong Kong

A minute on the lips…

When I was a teenager, someone told me “remember, a minute on the lips, a lifetime on the hips”.  I think of that now after the holidays when everyone (including myself) is trying to lose 5-10 pounds.  Ugh!  It’s not easy.

Losing just a few pounds requires effort.  You have to REALLY want it.  Fortunately, I’ve already shed 1 KG in 9 days from working out and eating right… feeling slightly hungry before bed, daily sweat sessions and cardio with the jump rope, reducing my intake of refined carbs and processed foods, and increasing my water consumption.  1KG is just 2.2 lbs, but it all adds up.

If you want to lose weight, you definitely can… but you need to be realistic and want it more than you want other lifestyle choices such as sugars, excess food, alcohol, laziness, and comfort.  YOU have control over what your body looks like, and you can choose to build your own body however you want and make a decision to live and eat well.  Maybe you’ve just skimmed over those last few sentences like “blah, blah, blah”… but it’s true that you really have complete control over the way you look.

Some of my tips for trimming up a bit:

  • Drink two large glasses of water after waking up and before meals.
  • Drink 1 large glass of water after each meal.
  • Make sure breakfast is 50% fruits; lunch & dinner are 50% vegetables.
  • Avoid eating and drinking foods that weren’t in existence in the 1800’s (this is a good one).
  • To curb cravings between meals, drink hot tea.
  • Limit fried foods and processed foods as much as possible.
  • Add psyllium husk to foods to increase bulk and aid digestion


Filed under: Belly, Belly and Core, Exercise, Fitness - Motivation, Health, Healthy Eating, Losing Weight, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Health All-Star: Psyllium Husk

Hello Friends,

I consider psyllium husk fibers a Health All-Star when incorporated into a diet for additional fiber, digestive health, and appetite control.  This saw-dust-looking powder is a natural, taste-free, gluten-free, nearly no-calorie, fiber-rich food which turns liquids, smoothies, soups, etc into a somewhat gel-like substance if not consumed immediately.  It is this gel-like texture which forms bulk in your GI system and promotes a healthy colon by absorbing fats and cholesterol from the digestive tract, pushing out mucoid plaque, and preventing constipation.  Other beneficial health properties of psyllium husk include the following:

  • Blood pressure improvement
  • Treatment of IBS
  • Treatment of yeast infections
  • Pain management and treatment of hemorrhoids and cystitis
  • Anti-inflammatory properties
  • Weight loss control
  • Pregnant women should consult a physician prior to use

Personally, I find psyllium husk helpful during weeks of detoxing and tightening up my diet, or mornings after a wonderfully indulgent evening out (see shake recipe below).  Although I do not consume this product daily, it helps me feel clean, refreshed, and light and is a welcome addition to my personal health program.  I purchase 200-300 gram packages at 360 supermarket in Elements or Hyrdohealth in Central and keep it refrigerated and sealed for freshness.

Jennie’s Super Healthy Morning Shake: Blueberries (any fruit as desired), heaped spoon spirulina, heaped spoon psyllium husk fibers, 1 cup almond milk, 1 cup ice, 1 tablespoon flaxseed oil, 1 heaping spoon vanilla protein powder.  Blend and be prepared to eat with a spoon… the psyllium will make this thick… and it becomes thicker the longer it sits out.  Add psyllium powder to the blender after the milk for easier cleaning.  Almond milk is used for the naturally sweet taste, protein, and low calorie properties.  Spirulina has a strong earthy flavor balanced by the fruit and vanilla protein powder.

Filed under: Belly, Health, Healthy Eating, Hong Kong, Losing Weight, Tummy, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , , ,

Dressing for Pot Bellies, Tummies, & Guts

You try EVERYTHING and can’t get rid of your belly?

Here is the truth: when you get to the point when everything else looks good – legs, arms, back, shoulders, tush – you start to worry about the belly.  Then, you’re so upset about your midsection, you don’t realize how fit the rest of your body is.  If the rest of you looks good, you’re probably pretty fit and maybe you’ll always have a bit of a belly because your body-type chooses to store any extra fat there.  So, either make significant health changes (visit …. or dress around it. 

Summer Dressing: Wear clothing which shows off the body parts you feel confident about and do not wear baggy clothes to hide your tummy.  Oversized clothes will make you look bigger. The seam on your shirt’s shoulder should hit right at the edge of your shoulder… not half-way down your bicep.   A mistake to avoid is the basic 50% top and 50% bottoms look – which brings a dividing line right across your waist.  Aim for either a higher or lower dividing line, but just make sure any color change in your outfit is not directly at the waist.  Wear darker colors around the mid-section, and brighter colors or detailing in the areas you like.  For example, a black shirt with white horizontal stripes across the chest are, paired with black bottoms will make your chest look bigger, draw attention there, and the rest of you is a thinner column of black. Pattern also helps, but the pattern size should be similar to your own size.  A medium or large check on a medium person, smaller print on a smaller person, etc.  Wear patterns which keep the eye moving to avoid attention focused on the tummy. 

  • Ladies may consider tops and dresses which draw the attention to another place with detail and color.  Consider showing off your legs with shorter hemmed skirts and dresses.  I believe short-shorts are hard to wear after college-age and should be avoided unless you’re at the gym, in the house, or have a fabulous body.  Instead, you’ll find skirts and dresses are more cool and forgiving for thighs and you can wear them a little shorter.  Jeans in the cool summer evenings can show off your tush with a flowing, shorter top.   And, don’t forget how attractive an unusual necklace or pair of earrings looks when the rest of your outfit is very neutral.  Pick one thing to highlight so all eyes go there instead of the midsection.
  • Men should consider v-neck shirts, perhaps with a different color or pattern around the neck by finding polo shirt with interesting collars, button details, etc.  Opt for polo shirts, short-sleeve button downs in darker colors, and v-neck shirts in darker colors with interest around the neck or shoulders.  If details are not your thing, you will always look perfect in a premium quality solid-color  v-neck shirt or polo in navy blue or black.   Find a brand you like and buy several.  I personally think Hugo Boss maintains a wonderful collection for men’s shirts.

To briefly quote Pulp Fiction:

Fabienne: I was looking at myself in the mirror.
Butch: Uh-huh?
Fabienne: I wish I had a pot.
Butch: You were lookin’ in the mirror and you wish you had some pot?
Fabienne: A pot. A pot belly. Pot bellies are sexy.
Butch: Well you should be happy, ’cause you do.
Fabienne: Shut up, Fatso! I don’t have a pot! I have a bit of a tummy, like Madonna when she did “Lucky Star,” it’s not the same thing.
Butch: I didn’t realize there was a difference between a tummy and a pot belly.
Fabienne: The difference is huge.
Butch: You want me to have a pot?
Fabienne: No. Pot bellies make a man look either oafish, or like a gorilla. But on a woman, a pot belly is very sexy. The rest of you is normal. Normal face, normal legs, normal hips, normal ass, but with a big, perfectly round pot belly. If I had one, I’d wear a tee-shirt two sizes too small to accentuate it.
Butch: You think guys would find that attractive?
Fabienne: I don’t give a damn what men find attractive. It’s unfortunate what we find pleasing to the touch and pleasing to the eye is seldom the same.

Filed under: Belly, Belly and Core, Dressing Style Tips, Fall Fashion 2010, Fitness - Motivation, Tummy, , , , , , , ,