New Year’s Resolutions with Robin McGraw
The new year is here, and it’s time to make New Year’s resolutions! Whether your goal is to get fit, eat right or improve your appearance, The Doctors and guest co-host, Robin McGraw, a New York Times best-selling author and passionate and outspoken advocate for women's health, want to help you learn to stick to your resolutions.
“We, as women, need to take care of ourselves. We need to put ourselves at the top of the list sometimes,” says the devoted wife and mother of two sons. “It just comes down to a choice: It’s that you live every day of your life wanting to be the healthiest, the happiest, that you could possibly be.”
Robin shares the secrets behind her new book, What’s Age Got to Do with It? “I put my age on the front of the book because I am 55 years old and very proud of it,” she says. “I feel like at 55, I have enough experience to share with women out there. It’s for every age group.” She explains that when she was 32 years old, her mother passed away unexpectedly at age 58, and at that point she transformed the way she took care of herself. “I took her tragedy, and I changed how I live, and I just really feel passionate about getting that message out to other women.”
Robin stresses the importance of women taking the time to care for themselves, as well as those they love. “I feel like I was put on this earth to be a wife and mother. I’m very passionate about that. That’s my role, but I’ve never, ever forgotten that I’m also a woman, and I’ve let my whole family know that,” she says. Shortly after her first son, Jay, executive producer of The Doctors, was born, she realized that women had to set boundaries for themselves and live by them. She also let her husband and sons know that even though she was a woman, she was just as important as they were. She tells all women, “It is not selfish to put yourself first.”
What’s Age Got to Do with It? is on sale now. Read an excerpt.
The Doctors' Resolutions
Travis says that his New Year’s resolution is to bike to work every day. Lisa reveals that she has an addiction to candy that she wants to end. Dr. Jim shares that he’s recently gained a few pounds that he wants to shed, so he’s signed up to compete in and Ironman race in May. Read more about it in his blog!
Robin adds, “My resolution is definitely to quit eating almost an entire meal before bedtime.”
Dr. Ordon says that he is creating goals that he can stick with. “As we get older — I am the senior surgeon here — it’s so important that we get a little bit of aerobic, cardio exercise every day, and they say that is 30 minutes of moderate activity — so that’s number one for me,” he says, noting that he is also going to monitor his portion size at mealtime.
Fitting in Fitness
Christine shares that her New Year’s resolution is to make physical activity part of her everyday schedule so she can lose the last 20 pounds remaining from her pregnancy. “I seem to make the same resolution every year, but can’t stick to it,” she says, explaining that between taking care of her young son, cleaning the house and cooking, there’s no time for exercise. “I usually get to bed around 10:00 or 11:00. I’m totally drained. When am I supposed to work out?”
The Doctors send celebrity trainer Kim Lyons to Christine’s house to show her ways to be active during her daily routine. Kim suggests that when Christine takes her son for a walk, she does a quick warm-up, like running 100 steps and then walking 100 steps. “I want you to think fit all day,” Kim says. “Everything you do is an exercise move.” She shows Christine how to do lunges and squats while picking up her son’s toys and how to engage in resistance training with her laundry basket. In the kitchen, Kim shows Christine how tone her calves, gluteus maximus muscles and outer thighs by doing leg lifts while standing at the sink. Next, Kim demonstrates that Christine can tone her midriff and upper body by placing paper plates under her feet while on her hands and toes, and move her body as if she were running in place. Christine even learns an activity that incorporates her son as weight resistance.
In the studio, Christine tells The Doctors, “I was quite sore at first, but I’m starting feel a lot better and have a lot of energy now.” She adds that she’s lost three pounds.
“It was fun because we didn’t have to have a lot of expensive gadgets,” Kim says. “There are so many ways to do it, so there’s just no excuse.” Kim assures women that doing resistance training is not going to build large muscles. “You have to do resistance training,” she says. “And the best part of it is the more muscle you have, the more calories you’re going to burn just by sitting there. You’re going to burn more calories when you sleep. You burn more calories when you have muscle on your frame, and of course, it’s not all just about vanity; It’s about your health. It can help osteoporosis, along with a ton of other things.”
Kim, Robin, Christine and Dr. Travis demonstrate some exercises that can be done using household products. To tone your arms, Kim suggests buying two small bottles of laundry detergent and using them as weights in each hand while doing lifts. The audience joins the activities using an Aylio exercise band.
Ask Our Doctors and Robin
Ashley from Maryland says, “I absolutely love chocolate. I can’t give it up. It tastes too good. For my New Year’s resolution, I want to give up chocolate and lose some weight. Is there something I can substitute without being deprived of my chocolate craving?”
“There’s really no need to completely give up chocolate,” Dr. Travis says. “Dark chocolate not only gives us energy, it releases endorphins that make you feel good, and it has antioxidants that are actually anti-aging amongst other things. So a little bit of dark chocolate can go a long way.” But he cautions that chocolate is high in calories. To curb Ashley’s craving, Dr. Travis suggests she try Luna mini-bars and dark chocolate-covered goji berries, both low in calories.
Robin shares that she loves chocolate, but only a little at a time. “I keep M&M’s around the house, Hershey’s Kisses, miniature candy bars, and I give myself one a day,” she says. “It’s all done in moderation.”
Dr. Jim adds that he eats dark chocolate, but only one section of a bar per day.
“The key to this is portion size,” Dr. Travis tells Ashley.
Cindy in Texas tells Robin, “I’m 50 years old but feel like I’m going on 70. I’m always very tired. I’m about 20 pounds overweight. You always look amazing. What do you eat to stay looking so great?”
Robin shares that she eats small meals multiple times a day. “I enjoy certain foods all day long, and they’re blueberries, walnuts, almonds,” she says. “For breakfast, I love the Greek yogurt, and sometimes I will add the blueberries to it. I like low-fat, fat-free cottage cheese, and I love to pile the fruit, the berries, the nuts. I love sunflower seeds. There are healthy things that I have, and I don’t limit myself. I just snack on them the entire day.” Robin adds that for a snack, she toasts Ezekiel bread — a dense, gluten-free grain bread — and tops it with almond butter and honey.
Ensuring a Good Night’s Sleep
If you find yourself stressed out, you may also notice you’re not getting a good night’s sleep. June says she wakes up every night at 3:00 a.m. and can’t fall back to sleep. The Doctors send sleep expert Dr. Michael Breus to June’s home for a sleep call.
After chatting with June, Dr. Breus says, “Maybe there are some things in your bedroom that could be preventing you from being able to fall asleep.” June shows Dr. Breus where she slumbers, and right away he notices some problems. “Light right before bed can actually affect your internal biological clock,” he tells her, and suggests she use a LightWedge book light that illuminates only the page of the book, not the room. Another way to limit the amount of light in the bedroom is to use lower-wattage light bulbs for lamps on bedside tables. Dr. Breus also advises June to place what he calls a black-out curtain in front of her electronic equipment so she cannot see the lights on the machines. She tells him that her husband often snores, and the doctor suggests she have her spouse use an all-foam pillow that has a special resting place for the head. This will help her husband’s airway remain open during sleep, lessening his snoring.
“You still have got to be able to quiet your mind,” Dr. Breus says to June, suggesting she write in a worry journal. “On one side of the paper, you put down whatever it is that you’re thinking about or worried about. On the other side, you put one solution. Place it in the bedside table and close your mind on that issue.”
In the studio, June shares that making the little changes has worked wonders. “Since Dr. Breus came to my house, I am sleeping phenomenally better,” she says.
June also suffered from night sweats, and Dr. Breus gave her special pajamas to help combat that problem. “What’s really fascinating about these pajamas is that they’re made with a moisture-wicking fabric,” he explains.
Holding up the PJs, Robin comments that they are not only healthy, but very fashionable. “I had night sweats and hot flashes when I first started menopause, and I would have loved to have had something like this,” she says.
Using an animated graphic, Dr. Lisa explains that women get hot flashes and night sweats during menopause because estrogen causes body temperature to fluctuate which makes more blood flow to certain areas, bringing on the heat. As the temperature rises, the body cools itself by sweating.
Another important factor for getting a good night’s rest is changing the pillows on your bed at least once a year. Dr. Breus also suggests using an aromatherapy mist that you spray on your pillow. “There are double-blind placebo-controlled studies to show that there’s actually an effective component for aromatherapy,” he says.
Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep
• Write your stresses in a worry journal.
On one side of the page, write what you’re worried about or can’t stop thinking about. On the other side of the page, write one solution to the problem. “That solution can be, ‘I’m going to think about this tomorrow,’” Dr. Breus says. “You don’t have to solve your problem right then and there.” Once finished, close the paper and put it away for the night.
• Dim the lighting in your bedroom.
"We know that light actually can decrease the production of melatonin, so we don’t want to have a lot of light available at night while we’re going to bed,” Dr. Breus explains. He suggests using a LightWedge book light that illuminates only the page of the book, not the room, or lower-wattage light bulbs in your bedside lamps.
• Changing your pillow regularly.
"You should be changing your pillow almost once a year,” Dr. Breus says. Make sure your pillow offers support as well as ventilation.
• Wear pajamas that breathe and wick away moisture.
If you suffer from hot flashes, you may find yourself sweating during the night. Find pajamas that are made with a natural moisture-wicking fabric that will help keep your body temperature cool.
• Use aromatherapy.
"There are double-blind placebo-controlled studies to show that there’s actually an effective component for aromatherapy,” Dr. Breus says.
New You Facial
Many women constantly strive to look younger, and one place they focus on is their face. Dr. Ordon shows off the new Glymed DermaSound Elite, a new ultrasonic machine for performing facials. He demonstrates how it works.
“Based on an ultrasonic system, it does three things,” he says. “By creating an ultrasonic wave, it exfoliates your skin. That means it’s cleaning, it’s getting rid of that dead skin. It opens up the skin and actually allows moisturizers to penetrate deeper, and as we know, it’s all about moisturizing. And third, it actually helps to tighten the collagen in your skin. It’s sort of three systems in one.” He adds that he’s had the procedure performed on his face.
Lisa, whose skin suffers from sun damage as well as red and brown spots, undergoes the facial by Dr. Ordon. “The first thing I did was exfoliate and remove that dead skin, get rid of that outer layer, and then I added the moisture back into her skin with this polypeptide recovery complex,” he explains.
Lisa shows off her new face and says, “My skin feels fabulous. It’s smooth.”
The DermaSound treatment usually begins as three sessions, with a follow-up session once a month. Each treatment costs $100 to $200.
Robin tells the audience they will receive a jar of Glymed’s Peptide Skin Recovery Complex.
You can also use ingredients found in your own kitchen to attain a youthful glow. Robin shares her special recipe for a facial scrub that anyone can make in their own home.
Robin’s Almond Oatmeal Honey Facial Scrub
• 1 cup oatmeal
• 1 cup almonds
• ½ cup honey
Put oatmeal and almonds in the blender and combine. “Make it as fine as you think you want, because you want it dense enough to scrub,” Robin says.
Add the honey to the oatmeal almond mixture. Apply to the face and wash off.
If you choose to make larger batches, you can keep the extra in a plastic bag in the refrigerator.
“One thing I love about this is you can do it every day, because it’s all natural, won’t harm your skin and really exfoliates well,” Robin says.
Kicking Smoking in the Butt
One of the most common resolutions people make every year is to quit smoking. Sandy’s been puffing away for 21 years and is desperate to quit. She’s tried patches, gum and pills, but nothing has worked. Backstage during the show, addiction specialist Karen Stewart, Psy.D gives her a Freedom Laser Therapy Treatment.
Karen explains, “I’m applying a cold, low-level laser to energy meridians on her body that are going to help her break her nicotine addiction.” The laser is applied to Sandy’s wrists, hands, face and ears. Karen says she shouldn’t feel any pain, only a feeling of relaxation. “It’s going to give her an endorphin release, similar to the feeling she has with a cigarette, but it’s natural, and it’s going to get her over that crucial detox period to nicotine.”
At the end of the show, Sandy joins Dr. Travis onstage, and he asks her, “Any urge to smoke a cigarette?”
“None whatsoever,” she replies with a grin.
Karen points out that one 30-minute treatment should be enough to keep Sandy kicking the habit. “She needs to take vitamins for the next 30 days to get over all the detox and to get [her] through that crucial detox period,” she says. Facing Sandy, she continues, “Getting through that hump period, you have to rid yourself of nicotine throughout your life, your house and your car. If you have a spouse or friend who smokes, make sure they put them outside.”
Dr. Travis adds that Sandy should also stay away from caffeine and alcohol.