Don’t stress out and over eat this holiday season

Chef Timothy
 Dr. Timothy Moore

Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone and the shopping rush has begun, I’m sure the stress and tension of buying gifts for loved ones will be ratcheted up several notches this holiday season.

Stress levels are always high during this time of year. It can be overbearing and even exhausting to some people who don’t have the money to buy gifts and, in some cases, food. But those who can afford to buy food don’t always buy the most nutritious food to eat.

When it comes to your health, you have to take charge. It would behoove food producers to consider the health of consumers. What if food regulators, for example, would put labels on food packages to warn of the dangers of saturated fats and other fat laden foods? They warn us about the dangers of cigarettes and alcohol. They can do the same thing with food.

There is madness in the health care world and it’s getting out of control. People are getting fatter and fatter. Who should we blame? Ourselves. We have become gluttons, eating any and everything that tastes good. If we’re not careful, most of us will become obese. It’s an American tragedy – an epidemic. I’ve written a lot about diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, cancer and a host of other health related issues, but obesity is a problem that should not be taken for granted.

 Too much of a good thing, even Thanksgiving turkey can be bad for you. (Photo by Tyrone P. Easley)

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of every three adults is obese and one out of every six children is obese. Obesity leads to major health related issues such as diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer. There is no simple solution. People just have to make better choices when preparing their meals.  

Obesity costs $150 billion a year, which equates to about one out of every dollar that’s spent on healthcare. I believe the problem is with fast food restaurants. There seems to be one on every corner. I’m sure it’s the convenience of getting a meal served in less than 4 minutes that keeps us coming back. The only problem is most fast food is unhealthy.

There is a high incidence of diabetes in the African-American community – about 13 percent. But then one out of 13 Americans is diabetic according to the World Health Organization. The problem is growing exponentially. You should ask yourself: What can I do to achieve a healthy lifestyle and reduce, or reverse, those grim statistics?

Educating people about healthy foods is the first step. Just because you’re grappling with a minuscule budget doesn’t mean you can’t buy good, wholesome, quality food that’s beneficial to your overall health. It wouldn’t even hurt to ask your neighborhood grocer or market proprietor to bring in fresh fruit and vegetables. Eating fresh fruit and vegetables, of course, can control obesity.

I understand economics, but it’s a shame that neighborhood grocery stores and markets would rather put profits before health and nutrition. There is nothing wrong with making money – but at the expense of consumers who are already grappling with obesity? It’s preposterous.

The U.S. Diabetes Prevention Program, a major multicenter clinical research study nearly a decade ago, has shown that with a lifestyle change and modest weight reduction, a person with pre-diabetes can prevent or even delay the onset of diabetes by 58 percent. But those who are prone to diabetes will have to consume more fruit and vegetables and switch from a meat-based diet to a plant-based diet in order to stop the onslaught of full diabetes.

Buying and cooking the right kind of food sometimes depends on which side of the track you live on. But that’s the society we live in. In my opinion, the poorer the neighborhood, the poorer the food choices. Better food is often found, not in the inner city, but in many cases in ritzier neighborhoods.

If you’d stop, observe and think about what you’re buying and putting in your mouth, you’ll be much better for it. You don’t have to be a glutton this holiday season to be happy. And, by all means, don’t stress out and over eat. Be mindful that obesity is on the rise.

(Dr. Timothy Moore teaches nutrition, heart disease and diabetes reversal through a plant-based lifestyle. He is a professional speaker, wellness coach and personal plant-based chef. He can be reached by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit him on the Web at or; or text him at 33938 message Chef.)

Trying to regain your health? Change is the buzzword

Chef Timothy
 Dr. Timothy

It is far easier to stay the course in any area of life than change direction. But when that course is littered with unsuspecting potholes and dangerously meandering turns, it pays to change course, particularly when your health depends on it.

Life is short, the old folks used to say. But life doesn’t have to be short if you control what you put in your body. Eating the right kinds of food will keep your body working at optimum levels. Though food can be addictive, it is up to you to discern what nutrients are best for your body. There isn’t a magic bullet or a short cut to good health, though.

If you’re grappling with bad health, you could blame your parents for your growth and development when you were a child. That’s where it all began. We develop our eating habits from our parents, directly and indirectly. Each generation, for example, continues to pass those bad eating habits down until family members are stricken with high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, etc.

Are some diseases hereditary? There may be some validity to that, but most illnesses are the result of bad eating habits and total neglect of the body. If it tastes good, then it must be good. That is so not true! Cakes and pastries taste good, but too much sugar is not good for the body. Meat dishes may taste good, but a daily heaping will surely affect your health.

A healthy lifestyle starts in your mind, and once you decide to change the way you’ve always done things, you’ll discover that it’s best for the long haul. The quest for optimal health should be your goal. Some people may prefer to remain in their present condition – unhealthy. But the reality is they’ll most likely die from something that could be prevented if only they’d take time to feed the body its proper nutrients.

Age is only a number, goes the adage. For example, 50 might have seemed old at one point. But then when you reached that milestone, you really couldn’t tell the difference – unless your body was broken down or you were stricken with a disease.

Change is necessary, if you want to live a healthy lifestyle. It is not just a slogan that President Barack Obama used as a buzzword on the campaign trail. It was key to his ascension to the presidency and could be the key to your success, if you keep in mind that no one can open the door to a healthier lifestyle but you.  

Food is a mystery to some people who may not be used to preparing nutritious dishes. You might want to stay away from pig’s feet and other pig products – or any meat dishes for that matter – that were cooked in lard, grease and oils and loaded with transfat. In fact, most food is actually dangerous and unhealthy when nutrients are obliterated in the cooking process, or when the choice of food is not taken into consideration in the first place.  

There is nothing wrong with eating vegetables. You don’t have to eat meat to live. Some animals – other than us Homo sapiens – are meat eaters. Others feed on grass, nuts and berries – not steak, chicken, French fries or a chocolate shake. A plant-based diet loaded with vegetables and fruit will keep the body strong and fit.

A healthy lifestyle is not complicated if it’s something you want to achieve. But here again, you have to make a change, even if change means eating healthy, staking out a different environment and making new friends. Sometimes the company we keep will impede our progress and keep us mired in the muck of an unhealthy lifestyle.  

I’m amazed at how much money we spend to bury our loved ones. But just think for a moment: What if that money was used on the front end of life to fortify the body with nutrients rather than on the tail end for burials? Sounds like an investment you can live with? I would hope so.

Here’s a little advice: Choose your food wisely. Read the ingredients. Fresh and unprocessed food is so much better. Now that’s change you can live with.

(Dr. Timothy Moore teaches nutrition, heart disease and diabetes reversal through a plant-based lifestyle. He is a professional speaker, wellness coach and personal plant-based chef. He can be reached by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit him on the Web at or; or text him at 33938 message Chef.)

Chef Timothy’s Thanksgiving Dressing

Before Lincoln, the early settlers threw a feast that lasted three days. They prepared fish, eels, shellfish, wild fowl, grains, berries and vegetables. If you’re preparing dressing this Thanksgiving, try my recipe.

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Soul lives in Memphis

Recently, I got the opportunity to be a part of a couple of great events that spotlighted two of the best musical offerings Greater Memphis has to offer.

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That sound? Oh, it’s just the President, singing

What's happening Myron?
 Myron Mays

That sound? Oh, it’s just the President, singing

Shouts out to our president! Who would have thought the guy could carry a note. But he pulled it off, singing a few notes of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” during an appearance at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem recently.

I’m reminded of Bill Clinton playing the saxophone on the “Arsenio Hall Show” prior to Clinton’s election as President of the United States. I do believe that was one of the things that got him elected.

As for President Obama, I think his brief melodic moment may just help him secure a second term. If you ask me, he should have done the whole song. Mr. President, Frankly, you held out on us.

We want more!

It’s ‘my year’ for Oscars

About every two years or so, the Academy Awards is actually worth me taking the time to sit down and watch, and 2012 is my year, thanks largely to “The Help.”

The movie that cost $25 million to make while grossing over $205 million to date netted four Oscar nominations, including Best Picture. In addition, nominations were announced this week for Viola Davis (Best Actress), and Octavia Spencer and Jessica Chastain (Best Supporting Actress consideration for both).

Now granted, I will probably be channel flipping a little bit because I like the Animation Domination cartoon lineup on Fox Sunday night. I love “Family Guy” and I make no apologies for it. However, I will not miss any of the Academy Awards’ “good” parts, trust me. (lol)

By the way, “The Help” – told through the view of Mississippi maids battling racism during the early 1960s – airs on ABC on February 26 at 8 p.m.

Memphis Rebirth Entertainment presents ‘Soul Talk’

“Soul Talk” goes down this Saturday night at the Marshall Arts Gallery at 639 Marshall Ave.

A fully interactive lounge session, “Soul Talk” allows patrons to control the evening by creating their own music playlists. Throughout the evening, the DJ will spin the songs submitted, and between sets we will discuss various topics as it relates to the music industry. Complimentary wine, beverages and food will be served all evening. The show starts at 8 p.m.

Comedy at the Desoto Civic Center

Sommore, Bruce Bruce and Earthquake will be shaking up the Desoto Civic Center in March. The Royal Comedy Tour (RCT) has been around since 2009 and continues to showcase those comedians who are presently the voice of the industry.

In the tradition of “Def Comedy Jam” and BET’s “Comicview.” the RCT is raw, real and in your face. The show also features Tony Rock and Mark Curry. Be sure to get your ticket and show up at the Desoto Civic Center on March 4. Tickets are available at the Desoto Civic Center Box Office.

Bobby Womack at the Fitz

The Unsung special on TV One featuring Bobby Womack really makes me want to see him in concert.

Well, guess what? “The Poet” himself is coming to the Mid South at Fitzgerald’s Casino in just a few weeks! If you like hits such as “Across 110 Street,” “If You Think You’re Lonely Now,” and “That’s The Way I Feel About You,” you might wanna mark your calendars now for February 18th!

For more information, call The Fitz at 1-800-766-5825.

PARTING SHOT: Just a reminder to mark your calendars for What’s Happening Wednesday! There will be great food, drinks and lots of bowling! So make plans to hang out with me on Feb. 8! Until then, that’s what’s happening.

(If you have an event you’d like for me to cover or attend, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .)