Real Food: The Cure for Obesity?

Real Food: The Cure for Obesity?

According to the CDC 36.5% of American adults are obese. Because obesity increases our risk for heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and several types of cancer, this is a serious and costly problem. In 2008, its medical cost in the U.S. alone was $147 billion. The emotional price is incalculable.

Definition of food graphic.Sadly, although we spend $20 Billion dollars a year on weight-loss products, and an average of an hour a day exercising the obesity rate keeps climbing. Maybe weight loss products and exercise gadgets aren’t the answer. Could something as banal as eating only real food (nutritious substances) be the solution?

I’m not a weight loss expert, but everyone I know who has managed to lose weight and keep it off attributes most of his or her success to a commitment to eat only real food. This means different things to different people. Some followed a paleo type diet, some became vegetarians or vegans, others simply gave up fast food and Frankenfood; but they all stopped eating processed junk and started eating the dictionary definition of food.  Most importantly, they didn’t start eating junk again because they got bored. They started eating for health.

What exactly is junk food?

Miriam-Webster defines junk food as: (1) food that is high in calories but low in nutritional content (2) something that is appealing or enjoyable but of little or no real value. This is a good definition, but I would also include (3) Any food regardless of its nutritional value that you can’t seem to stop eating, even when you’re not hungry.

The foods that I personally make a strong effort to never eat, because once I start, I have trouble stopping are include:

  1. Ice Cream and store bought frozen treats
  2. Cookies and most baked sweets
  3. Chips,crisps, pretzels and snack crackers

Your personal trigger foods may be different. The important thing is to discover what they are and eliminate them from your diet completely. Stop buying your trigger foods. Throw away anything that stands between you and your best self. It doesn’t take long for cravings to completely disappear once you make a decision to do so.

If you can’t quit cold turkey, find easy to make, nutritious substitutes to take their place. You can replace ice cream with smoothies; make your own baked goods with nutritionally dense ingredients; bake or air fry vegetables for healthy snacks… be creative.

What should we do if we give in to temptation?

Take a few minutes to think about why and come up with a plan to do better from that moment forward. Write it all down to solidify your plan in your own mind. Don’t beat yourself up. Just press your own reset button and keep moving forward.

I’m not interested in changing my career, nor do I want a share of the weight-loss industries earnings. My only goal is to share what really works.

We should kindly encourage each other to be our very best.

Following are a couple of great resources to get you started:

Every now and then, I plan to share my progress, other free resources and some of my family’s favorite healthy recipes.

Your comments, ideas and suggestions are welcome.








Don't give up. Press RESET and start over.Is it time to push your RESET button?

One out of three people ditch their New Year’s Resolutions by the end of January. Don’t be one of them! Never give up on your resolutions or goals. If you have a set back, just press your own RESET button and keep trying.

Why you should never give up

“But, I’m too tired and too busy to think about my resolution right now, I’ll start again next year,” you say.  I say, start again right now. If you wait until next year, as of today, the habits that you are trying to change will have another 329 days to become more deeply ingrained.  This will only make it harder for you to make positive changes that will improve your life.

Resolutions are important life changing goals that deserve daily focus and attention.

They should not be something that you are willing to give up on or postpone for another year. To help prove my point, I will share one of my wife’s resolutions and one of my own.

Like many women her age, my wife wants to lose weight. I love her and think she is beautiful inside and out. But, she says that being overweight makes her feel dumpy, unattractive and unlovable. In order to lose weight and feel better about herself, my wife has resolved to eat a healthy diet and to exercise at least half an hour a day. Thank God that she’s a smart woman. She knows that if she cheats on her diet or skips a workout, it won’t keep her from reaching her goals permanently, but an all or nothing thinking will. If she messes up, she pushes her RESET button and starts over. How do you think she would feel if she gave up on her resolutions?

One of my goals is to avoid provoking my children to anger, while bringing them up in the discipline and instruction that will help them to live good lives (Ephesians 6:4). So I consciously avoid creating adversarial relationships with my teenagers. I listen to them, let them know that I care about everything in their lives and that I want the best for them. Kids don’t come with instruction manuals and I’m not perfect,  so sometimes things get ugly, but I don’t use this as an excuse to behave in a way that would ruin my relationship with them or to stop trying to be a good dad. I push the RESET button and keep moving forward.

Obviously, I don’t have all of the answers. I’m just doing the best that I can with what I have and what I know, but by the grace of God, at least I’m smart enough to push the RESET button and to never give up on what is important  to me.



Warm Body Syndrome

warm body syndrome

Do you want this guy cleaning your floors and fine furnishings?

The October 2015 issue of Cleanfax magazine featured an article entitled The Warm Body Syndrome. Warm Body Syndrome can be defined as the practice of hiring a warm body to get a job done, without much thought as to who the body belongs to.  This article, written for business owners,  begins with this question: “How many times over the years have you allowed yourself and your company to hire someone because they had a pulse and were breathing?” It goes on to explain why and how employers should conduct background checks on potential employees.

Background checks are good things and every responsible business owner should already be conducting them.  My questions to potential clients is: Why take a chance when you don’t have to?

Don’t be a victim of Warm Body Syndrome!

Do business with a small company like mine:

  1. Small businesses like my own are more flexible, personal, passionate. and straight-forward.
  2. We are less likely to harm the environment.
  3. We’re more likely to be cater to our locale.
  4. We are more aware of and in control of our energy costs and less likely to engage in wasteful practices.
  5. Another advantage of small business over national ones is the possibility of ensuring satisfaction. I chose to remain small  because that is the only way that I can insure top quality work at each and every job.
  6. The only training that can make up for over twenty years of experience is over twenty years of experience! I do all of my work myself.
  7. When you chose my company, you know that “the buck stops here.” I am responsible for every service that I perform for you and will never try to pass responsibility off to someone else.  I like it this way because it allows me to take 100% of the credit for a job well done.
  8. I care enough to go the extra mile to earn your repeat business and referrals.
  9. I have excellent customer testimonials and published reviews to prove it.
  10. And, I’m 100% immune to Warm Body Syndrome.

Could you say the same for the warm bodies that other companies send to your home or business?

A sad, but true case of Warm Body Syndrome 

The following headline appears on the front page of the Final Edition of the Sunday, July 31, 2016 Palm Beach Post: “Attack by worker raises homeowner awareness.”  A Boynton Beach woman was beaten by a worker that she allowed to enter her home.

Know who you are opening your door to.



Snow White or Sisyphus

Snow White or Sisyphus

Snow White cleaning, Snow White or Sisyphus

Snow White whistles while she works on cleaning.

Most of us clean our homes or hire others to do it. It has to be done, but do we approach housework more like Snow White or Sisyphus?

For Disney Princesses cleaning is easy and fun. After all, they have adorable forest creatures or magically animated household objects to keep them company and help them. They also know how to make tasks fun. They sing, dance and whistle while they work with permanent smiles painted on their pretty glowing faces.

Sisyphus, Snow White or Sisyphus

Housework can seem like the torture of Sisyphus.

Unfortunately, many of us don’t glow; we sweat as we clean. Most of the time, we don’t have anyone to keep us company or to help. Although, we know that a positive attitude makes everything better, we have to admit that we don’t always feel like cleaning, much less smiling while we do it.

For many of us, housework isn’t a lot of fun. Sometimes, we feel more like Sisyphus than like Snow White. Sisyphus was a character from Greek mythology that was condemned to roll an enormous boulder up a hill, only to watch it roll back down again, repeating this action for all of eternity. Like Sisyphus, we clean, wash, scrub, wipe, dust, polish… then have start all over again. No wonder we sometimes identify with him! But with a little creativity and planning, we might be able to change this.

Cleaning can be hard, boring and repetitive work, but unlike the torture of Sisyphus, it is not pointless. Housework is necessary and important. We are not scouring, mopping or vacuuming for nothing. There are real and vital reasons to do it:

  1. Top Ten Reasons for Organizing and Cleaning Your Home
  2. The Importance of Having a Clean House

There is good news: We can choose to identify with Snow White or Sisyphus.

We can choose to whistle while we work and use our creativity and other resources to enjoy cleaning, by figuratively tearing pages out of Disney Princesses’ books and doing what they did to make our tasks less monotonous and more enjoyable.

We should plan ahead, decided what our priorities are and handle them one at a time.

  • Breaking things up into small tasks prevents us from getting overwhelmed.
  • We should get all of our supplies together for one task and finish it before we begin another.

We don’t have to do it alone. Our helpers may not be furry bunnies or talking tea pots, but cleaning is always more fun when we have someone to do it with. Our partners, family members and friends can be recruited to help.

  • Set a timer and keep our cleaning sessions short.
  • Take time to enjoy each other’s company and keep it playful.
  • Involve our kids and make a game out of it.
  • We should return the favor.
  • Or we can hire a professional to do some or all of the work for us.

When we have to clean alone, we don’t have to feel lonely. Our TVs, stereos, computers and other gadgets can keep us company. In fact, cleaning time is perfect for multitasking.

  • We can listen to our favorite music or talk show.
  • Students, can play lectures and learn while they work.
  • This is a great time to treat ourselves to wonderful audiobooks (Lots of titles are available at your local library and on Youtube),
  • Or we can simply enjoy the relative silence, organize our thoughts, plan ahead, daydream…

How about you? When you are cleaning, do you identify more with Snow White or Sisyphus? Do you have any tips for making housework more enjoyable? Leave your thoughts and comments.

By J.C. Bryant





Call Us

Call Us!

Don’t “fill in the boxes” on some third party internet site and hope for the best! Call us instead.

call us: Don't sell yourself short!We know that some people think that it’s a good idea to enter their personal information into little boxes on the internet and not have to pick up a telephone to talk to a real person. This seems to be a convenient way to book an appointment. Maybe they don’t know that their information is usually sold to third parties.  This often leads to miscommunication, inaccurate estimates or worse. Where is the accountability when you are dealing with another business entity? Call us instead and speak directly with the company that does the work and takes full responsibility for everything. Take advantage of your ability express your concerns and to ask questions. Avoid unpleasant surprises.

We want our prospective customers to call us and communicate directly with us, not just fill in generic blanks.

You owe it to yourself to know exactly who you’re dealing with before you share any personal information or let anyone in your home or business. Call the business you are dealing with.

If we don’t know exactly what your needs and expectations are,  how can we give you an honest estimates? 

Open communication before you book an appointment also allows us to give our customers the very best price possible. We pride ourselves on delivering the highest quality service at very competitive prices. If we squandered our time and energy on appointments that are a waste of time for any reason, our clients would be the ones who pay for it.

When the information potential customers give us over the telephone is honest, we guarantee that the price quoted is the price they pay. We do not believe in bait and switch or game playing. Nor will we share or sell your information with anyone.

Experience and common sense tell us that filling out a form and hoping for the best, usually gets us the worst. I wish I had a cent for every time that someone tells me that they booked an appointment with someone else because they got a low quote then wound up paying more for inferior service, and for every poor devil that took a day off from work to get something done but had to throw the shysters out instead. Ugly confrontations, arguments and wasted time will make you lose sleep at night and take years off of your life.

I value my time, my energy, my well-being and my paying customers too much to play the just fill out the boxes and hope for the best game. Pick up the phone and call us. Tell us about your needs, concerns, availability …  Ask questions.  You’ll get an accurate estimate over the phone. If we can serve you, you’ll get the best quality service available and avoid unwanted consequences and unpleasant surprises.




Memorial Day

Memorial DayMemorial Day, the last Monday of May is almost here. This is the day that we have set aside to remember the men and women who died while serving in our nation’s armed forces.

Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day.

On this day mourners honored the Civil War’s dead by decorating their graves with flowers. In 1868, James Garfield made a speech at Arlington National Cemetery.  After the speech 5,000 participants decorated the graves of the more than 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers. This celebration was inspired by local observances that had taken place in various locations in the three years since the end of the Civil War. For this reason several cities claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day.

By the late 19th century, many communities across the country had begun to celebrate Memorial Day, and after World War I, observers began to honor the dead of all of America’s wars. In 1971, Congress declared Memorial Day a national holiday.

This day should be about more than super sales and long weekends.

Traditionally, our flag was raised to the top of the staff and then solemnly lowered to the half-staff position, where it remains only until noon. It is then raised to full-staff for the remainder of the day. The half-staff position honors those who gave their lives for our country. At noon, their memory is raised by the living, who resolve not to let their sacrifice be in vain, but to rise up in their stead and continue the fight for liberty and justice for all.

Other observances included wearing red poppies, visiting cemeteries, decorating the graves of fallen heroes with flags and flowers, and visiting memorials.

Short Memorial Day Poem, On This Memorial Day

We ask you to help us celebrate this day, not just by honoring the dead, but also the living. Please join us in  supporting veterans and active duty servicemembers.


Exorcising Rage

Exorcising Rage

Exorcising rage may seem like a strange topic for your friendly neighborhood cleaner to write about. But sadly, I deal with rage-aholics everyday: driving to and from appointments, in homes, in businesses… Too many people seem highly reactive, unpredictable, controlling, insecure and addicted to rage.

I am human too. I also get angry when I see unfairness and abuse. Anger is a normal, often healthy, emotion. But, if I let it control me rather than the other way around, it can easily spin out of control and become a destructive waste of my precious time and and limited energy.

Save your energy for something more productive than rage

Experience has taught me that anger can and should be controlled, modulated, or at least well-oriented. So without further ado, here are a few simple truths that help me remember to save my energy for something more productive than rage.

  • Before you get upset, ask yourself if your anger can turn things around. If the answer is no, Why bother? Anger that can’t be used to change things is a waste of energy! It doesn’t solve anything. It builds nothing, but it can destroy everything.
  • Sometimes it is enough that you know you are right. It is not always necessary that everyone else agree with you.
  • Reserve your rage for your enemies. Then remember that someone worthy to be called an enemy may enjoy your anger and the harm it causes you.Road Rage
  • Remember that road rage kills! Aggressive driving is dangerous and a temper tantrum isn’t going to intimidate heavy traffic into lightening up.
  • Nobody is perfect but no one is beyond redemption. But, redeeming everyone singlehandedly isn’t my job, nor is it yours. Remember that nobody likes being bossed around or controlled.
  • Try to understand others before judging them. I once heard a story about children misbehaving in a restaurant, while the father just sat there with a blank look on his face. They were chasing each other around noisily and disturbing the other diners until one of them had the courage to shake the father out of his fog: “Hey man! Control your kids! Are you blind and deaf or just inconsiderate?” The young man shook his head, looked up with bloodshot eyes and quietly said, “I’m so sorry. We just buried their mother…”

I’m a cleaner, not a shrink! So, if you want expert advice, read:

  1. Anger Management by The Mayo Clinic
  2. Controlling Anger Before It Controls You by The American Psychological Association
  3. And pray continually. Divine intervention might be the best choice for exorcising rage.

May the force be with you, but with quiet propriety.


Fur-kid Friendly

Fur-kid friendly: Pig in a stroller eating a popsicleI never thought about whether or not I’m fur-kid friendly before.

I was somewhat surprised and a little amused the other day when I saw a well dressed couple take their equally well dressed miniature pig out of a stroller, cradle her in their arms, point up to the sky and say. “Look up honey, look at the plane!” She  –at least I assume it was a girl based on the frilly pink outfit she was wearing– didn’t seem too interested in the airplane that was passing overhead, but that didn’t seem to lessen her humans’ enthusiasm.

That pink clad bundle of joy was their fur-kid. They were proud to be her doting pet-parents and they didn’t seem to care what anyone else thought about them.

What’s a fur-kid?

A fur-kid is a pet such as a dog, cat, or miniature pig that is treated as if it were a child by its owners. Oops! I’m sorry! Please forgive my political incorrectness. I meant to say, “A fur-kid is person that is not a Homo sapien, but is treated as an equal or better by the humans that are lucky enough to be included in their families.”

The fur-kid industry in the United States is booming.

fur-kid friendly bar mitzvah

Pampering them is becoming the norm, as pet-parents’ expenses moves far beyond the necessities of food, veterinary care and grooming.

Specialty luxury products and services are popping up everywhere: Fine jewelry and accessories;  designer apparel; custom made bedding, furniture, carriers, bowls…finishing schools, day spas, extended vacations, birthday parties, religious celebrations…

According to NBC news, Americans will spend more than SIXTY BILLION DOLLARS on their pets this year.

Shouldn’t at least a few of those dollars be spent on fur-kid friendly specialty cleaning services?

Your fluffy bundles of joy deserve a fresh, clean, healthy environment and these services should be provided by professionals that understand their needs and that are fur-kid friendly. After all, even the best parents can’t do everything all by themselves.

Fur-kid friendly posts and helpful advice for pet-parents:


Spring Cleaning

While winters are short and mild here in sunny South Florida, Spring Cleaning is still a worthwhile practice. We can all benefit from a cleaner, fresher, and better organized home. Most people would agree that a neat and clean house feels more peaceful; you can breath better. In this post, I will share how my family approaches Spring Cleaning and the many benefits we get from doing it.

Spring Cleaning: A Simple Three Step Approach

Family Spring Cleaning

The first step to Spring Cleaning is organizing.

We begin by emptying closets, cabinets and storage areas. Then, we divide items into three categories: to keep, to give away, and to donate. Here are a few of the benefits we get from doing this:

  • We rediscover treasures that we forgot we had.
  • We get rid of clutter so that we can find and use what we decide to keep.
  • We get the pleasure of giving things we no longer want to people who can use them. For example, when she was cleaning out her closet, my daughter saw an outfit that she no longer wears and remembered that her close friend loves it. Her friend was happy to get it.
  • When we do not have anyone to give items to, we like to donate them to charity. We do not have the time for yard sales.  Other families prefer to sell things for a little extra cash.
  • We can then really clean dust, germs, allergens …etc. from closets and other storage areas.

The second step is to thoroughly clean storage areas.

We always work from top to bottom. For example, in a closet we will start by vacuuming the ceiling. Then we work our way down the walls and closet systems to the floors.

After all of the surface have been vacuumed to remove dust, we clean.  Cleaning tips:

  • Be careful to use a cleaner that is safe for the material.
  • Always look for green and non-toxic solutions. Read labels.
  • If you have no idea how to clean something that needs it, but you are afraid of ruining it, check with the manufacturer.

 The third step is to reorganize.

Group similar items together in a way that makes sense to you and your family, then put everything back. Remember that the more organized things are, the easier they are to find.

Work together as a family.

When you are done, everyone will know where things belong. If you have kids, this will help them to learn that there is a place for everything and everything should go back to its place after it is used. Part of having something is taking care of it. Make taking care of your home, your possessions and each other every family member’s responsibility.

I’m no Martha Stewart.  So, I’ll close with her  Spring Cleaning tips.








Help a Hoarder

Help a Hoarder: Are your storage areas overflowing?How to help a hoarder

Why would anyone even think about how to help a hoarder?

This weekend I helped my elderly mother move. In the process I discovered that she’s turning into a hoarder. From what I saw, many of her neighbors are  borderline hoarders too.  Their possessions are hurting instead of helping their quality of life. Sadly, none of them would admit that they have a problem, nor will they accept help, nor seek it.

What is a hoarder?

A hoarder is a person that collects and keeps a lot of things that appear useless or of very little value to most us. Their things cause distress or problems in their day-to-day activities and clutter their living spaces.  While this is clearly the case for my mom and some of her friends, they deny that they are becoming hoarders and claim that they have simply collected a lot of things over the years.

To be fair, neither my mom nor her friends are being buried alive by their odd collections of things yet. At first glance, their apartments appear to be relatively clean and neat. However, there is a big difference between accumulating and collecting. Collectors are proud of the things they collect, keep them well organized and proudly display them. My mom and her friends just have a lot of stuff that they have accumulated in varying degrees of disarray. They are ashamed of the clutter. They attempt to hide their things in closets, drawers, under beds, behind sofas…etc. Some of these areas are so stuffed that they haven’t been opened or cleaned in years. When they need something from these areas, it seems easier to go out and buy it than to deal with the mess. Eventually, the new purchases wind up buried with the rest of their clutter. Shame keeps them from inviting people over and enjoying their own homes. A few of them even complained about the mess and the dust it collects aggravating their allergies. Yet, they refuse to get rid of their useless stuff and are more than willing to take even more.

How can you help a hoarder when they don’t want to be helped?

Frankly, I don’t know how to help my hoarder. Because of the move, I did manage to get my mother to part with a few useless items. But, it wasn’t easy and she wasn’t happy about it. If you’re dealing with similar issues here are a couple of resources that you may find helpful:

I know that we have a lot to learn. We have a lot of work ahead of us. I’m reading and learning more about hoarding and how to help loved ones deal with it.  I’m also praying that with time, patience, love, and understanding, I can help my mother make better choices. Eventually, maybe, we can even help her friends with their hoarding issues too.