The arrested development of autumn in the 815 provided warmer-than-average temperatures for October and November. With the season seeming more like an extended summer, it would be easy to forget that the warm weather eventually gives way to the invigorating cold of winter. Cabin fever, cabin schmever . . . embrace the change of seasons and see for yourself how much fun you can have outdoors in the winter!
This protein-rich soup pairs rice and lentils, while cumin, turmeric and black pepper not only give this soup a wonderful aroma and mesmerizing, spicy flavor, but also are functional foods providing antioxidants shown to reduce inflammation, combat cancer and boost metabolism. I like to enjoy this warming Spicy Lentil Soup on crisp winter evenings.
Picture yourself walking into your favorite restaurant. Outside, a man and a woman chat about nothing particularly important while they take drags off of their cigarettes, faces scrunched and red from the cold air. You think to yourself, “Why must they smoke those disgusting cancer sticks? I’ll never understand. At least they have to take it outside now,” as you belly up to the bar and order your favorite cocktail after a particularly long day at the office. You pull out your cell phone and check your work email, even though you’ve had it up to *here* with everyone at work today. Next to you, a man picks the last lonely buffalo wing out of a forest of carrots and celery; he thoughtlessly tosses the bones into a now dozen-high pile and takes a deep gulp from his pint of beer.
For the vast majority of the population, there are two variables that dictate our ability to stay at a healthy weight. Our diets, which determine how many calories that we consume, and our activity levels, which determine how many calories our bodies use, are the two levers that we can pull to affect our body weight.
Americans have made weight loss a big industry. We spend tens of billions of dollars annually between our gym memberships, diet programs, nutritional supplements, etc. Some of us have even decided to go to the extremes of bariatric surgery to downsize our stomachs in the hopes that we will be able to stop eating so much and perhaps attain the physique for which we have longed.
I loved playing sports when I was growing up. No matter the season, there was always a sport that I was competing in or possibly another for which I was training. Looking back, the challenge of competing and the overall good feeling I got from being so active did a lot to shape the person I am today.