Top 10 Ways to Wellness in SoDu

Top 10 Ways to Wellness in SoDu

Do you love SoDu? We do too!

As a registered dietitian, and owner of Well Balanced Nutrition, I am always on a mission to find more health and wellness resources for myself and my clients. The original intent of this article was to highlight the different wellness businesses and programs in South Durham; instead, I discovered not just businesses but passionate individuals on a mission to help others live an active, happy, and healthy life.

It is exciting to see and experience how many different avenues the SoDu community can take to create a well-balanced lifestyle right here in our own backyards. Below you will find ten options for taking the next step on your wellness journey. We know there are so many more! Tell us what other SoDu offerings have helped you reach your health goals!

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There you have it!

These are just 10 of what I’m sure are countless ways to create a healthy lifestyle in South Durham. As we gear up for the Summer season, I’m curious what tool or program will be most helpful for you? 

Also, we would love to know what additional SoDu offerings have made a difference in your life? Tell us in the comments below! 

About the authors:

Lucy Hayhurst and Kristen Norton are Licensed and Registered Dietitians/Nutritionists and the owners of Well Balanced Nutrition. It’s their mission to improve lives by teaching, empowering and connecting people one wellness adventure at a time.

How a Permission Slip can help…

How a Permission Slip can help…

Imagine getting a call and learning that you have the opportunity to sit down with Oprah for an interview. Would you be nervous and awestruck? Would you try to play it cool? When Brene Brown, author and researcher, had this very experience she went through all those emotions. Before she went on the show, she found a pen and a post-it note, then jotted down a permission slip for herself that allowed her to be present in the moment, to enjoy it no matter how uncool she might look when she got excited and giddy. Brene apparently uses this technique often. I think it’s brilliant!

The other weekend I had an opportunity to either spend time with my family just relaxing, or get caught up on laundry and all the other chores. I felt the pull to get things on the to-do list checked off as usual, but I also knew the importance of unwinding with my family on a Sunday. Inspired by Brene’s written permission slip method, I got out a scrap piece of paper. On it, I wrote, “You have permission to relax and enjoy the day. Your to-do list can wait.”

That was powerful. The act of writing it down helped me let go of the ambivalence I was experiencing in my head. I went on to enjoy my Sunday as I should… relaxing with my family.


Lucy and I give you permission to take good care of yourselves or to keep it simple, but sometimes only you will know what you need. So for what can you write yourself a permission slip? To enjoy a food you’ve been craving without guilt? To politely pass on a social opportunity that would make you fall off your current eating plan? Or maybe it’s permission to rest because your body is begging for a day off from your workouts.

Permission slips aren’t excuses; they are a way of silencing that inner critic who is always telling you that you aren’t enough and they are great for those moments when feel a battle going on inside your head. Permission slips help you honor your needs, be your own best friend, and solve the doubts in your mind.

Do you need to replace electrolytes on these hot steamy days?

Do you need to replace electrolytes on these hot steamy days?

A recent visit back to my hometown in Indiana inspired me to answer this very question. My dad always has his refrigerator stocked with little bottles of Gatorade for him and the grandkids and I was reminded that many people believe Gatorade is the best way to hydrate. He was a little offended and surprised when I told him that it wasn’t the healthiest thing to offer the kids. “What? Why not? Don’t they need electrolytes after playing outside?” he said. I get where he is coming from, I do… Here is the gist of what I told him…

Sports drinks tout themselves as electrolyte replacers and marketers have made us believe that a sports drink is the best way to quench our thirst and replace our electrolytes on a hot summer day. But is it really?

What the sport drink companies don’t tell you is that sports drinks are designed for athletes or those who exercise intensely for more than 60 minutes, not your average person or kid. Most of us can easily get enough electrolytes from food. Plus no one really benefits from the added sugar, artificial flavors, and colorings that are found in many sports drinks.

Did you know: The amount of sodium and potassium in a sports drink is low compared to what you eat in typical meals.

But what if you ARE an athlete or you just sweat a lot in this heat?

For every CUP of sweat, you can expect to lose around 225mg of sodium, 50mg of potassium, 4mg of calcium and 3g of magnesium. Are you sweating that much? If so, you might benefit from a 12 ounce serving of Gatorade which contains 80 calories, 21g carbs, 160mg sodium and 45mg potassium. You could also just drink a cup of chocolate milk.

8 ounces of chocolate milk contains 120 calories, 20g carbs, 150mg sodium, 350mg potassium. It also has calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, protein, riboflavin, niacin and vitamins A, B12 and D.

Marathoners and other endurance athletes who don’t eat much before or during exercise would be wise to choose a sports drink.  In contrast, hikers, bicyclists, and people who eat before and during lengthy workouts can do fine with just plain water. That’s because food helps retain fluid in your body. In comparison, plain water consumed on an empty stomach quickly goes in one end, out the other.

If you are planning to sweat for more than four hours in this NC heat, a sports drink is helpful but not your only option. You can eat salty foods beforehand. A salty meal can help your body retain fluid, keep you hydrated longer and will enhance endurance.

Bottom Line

If you are exercising for less than an hour/day and eating 3 balanced meals you are likely getting plenty of electrolytes through your diet. So for most of us, we don’t need to do anything special to replace electrolytes. We do, however, need to stay hydrated and the best way to do that is by simply drinking water.

Endurance athletes need extra electrolytes during longer bouts of exercise and may benefit from a sports drink. Food is usually a better source than sports drinks and athletes can choose salty foods before and after workouts to aid in performance and recovery.

Have questions about your personal electrolyte and nutrition needs? Contact us today to set up your own personal wellness adventure.  

Charity’s #TransformationTuesday Story

Charity’s #TransformationTuesday Story

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

I started with Well Balanced Nutrition because I had gained weight and I wanted a boost to continue my weight loss journey and to get healthy.

Where it all started

I had been exercising and trying to eat right, but the scale wasn’t moving. My husband contacted Lucy because he works for The City of Durham. Lucy met with both of us then I switched to one-on-one appointments. She is a very kind and considerate person who wants you to succeed. She explained about the Well-Balanced Plate and how it works. Lucy also suggested I write down everything I ate. This helped until I got stuck again and we figured I was eating too many carbohydrates so she recommended I cut down to eating one carb per meal. Once I started doing this the scale started to move again and I achieved my goal.

How I know I’m on track

I knew I was on-track when I saw the scale started to show my progress and boosted my confidence. I have a habit of weighing myself every morning, but this helps me because if I ate too much then I know how to get back on track.

I know I can make mistakes but I get myself turned back around and just keep going and stay positive. Sweet foods have always been my weakness and I know they cause me to overeat. When this happens, I get myself turned back on track when I see that the scale has gone up. I start eating more fruits, vegetables, and protein to get full verses something sweet. I stay positive with the help from family and friends.

Secrets to success

The best strategy I learned from WBN is writing in my food journal daily and knowing I can do this with help and support. Lucy has helped me get to where I am and I am someone special and will continue to strive to be the best I can be!



Lucy’s Friday Favorites!

Lucy’s Friday Favorites!

Friday, Feb 24, 2017

My favorite at home yoga tool:

This is a fantastic resource for people that are interested in doing more yoga or starting out and feel intimidated by the group fitness classes. There are several styles offered and different levels depending on your ability. The length of the videos start at 5 minutes and some classes are up to 75 minutes. So many options! 

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My faToby face!vorite Toby Face!

On Tuesday
 we had movers coming into the apartment and instead of leaving Toby, our beautiful 9-year-old yellow lab, to bark at them all day he came to the office with me. I decided we needed a picture with the newly bloomed daffodils. And this is the face Toby made! 

Favorite recipe: Carrot Raisin Oatmeal Bread w/ Coconut Flour 

To wrap up our heart health whole-grain month, I’m including a version of the carrot raisin bread I made with oats and coconut flour last week. Yummy!