Expressions of Health Blog
"Videos, Motivations, and Other Positive Stuff"
  1. “Get Out and Vote, Billy Goat!”

    9 year-old Lia telling it like it is in this election year. Please share!

  2. New Years Wish from Expressions of Health!

  3. “Get a Good Night’s Sleep, Sheep”


    The Better Sleep Council recognizes the month of May as Better Sleep Month, so that makes this a great month to practice better sleep habits and enjoy the benefits of quality sleep. We talk a lot about nutrition and regular physical activity as a part of our wellness journey, and the importance of sleep may slip out of focus. The Better Sleep Council has information that supports many families are falling short of a restful night’s sleep at least one day per week. Review your practices around sleep, your routines that lead up to periods of restful sleep, and assess how the family functions when sleeping well. Keep a sleep log this month and look for connections to how the family responds to physical activity, stress, meal planning, homework, or family dynamics. Some questions you may answer in the log include: what was the routine that lead up to bed time, was the night restful, how long was the period of sleep, what was the mood at wake time, and what was the mood at sleep time. Have fun looking for connections and enjoy a better night’s sleep for the entire home.

    ———re-posted from YMCA of America

  4. Happy Earth Day (Spriggles Video)!!

    Spread the word, Hummingbird!!

  5. CHARITY YOGA EVENT – 3/24/2013

    We are thrilled to announce a very special charity yoga event 
    on Sunday, March 24 from 4-7 pm at Expressions of Health in 
    The evening will begin with a 2-hour yoga class based on the 
    theme of "Spirit of Community".  The class will incorporate 
    postures (asanas), breath work (pranayama), and meditation. 
    We will follow class with a wonderful vegetarian meal that 
    we will provide.
    Suggested donation: $20 with 100% of all proceeds donated 
    to the Oscoda High School auditorium renovation project 
    spearheaded by Scott Heinrich and Giuseppe Canale of Northeast 
    Academy of Dance.
    We have room for just 10 people and we expect this to 
    fill up quickly.  Please email ( or 
    phone (989/739-5498) ASAP to reserve your spot!!
  6. Sponsoring 3 Families at OCC


    Hi everyone!

    We’re asking for your help in identifying 3 families that Expressions of Health (and Spriggles Books) will sponsor at the Oscoda Community Center for the remainder of the season.  The following is the news release concerning this endeavor:


    Martha and Jeff Gottlieb, owners of Expressions of Health and authors of Spriggles Motivational Books for Children, are looking to sponsor three family memberships at the Oscoda Community Center for the remainder of the 2012/2013 season.  The Gottliebs have established a ”Spriggles Fund” in which a portion of the proceeds from the sale of Spriggles books goes toward avenues which help children lead healthy and active lives.   It is  this fund that will provide the support for the family memberships.

    In order for a family to be considered for this sponsorship, a short essay must be submitted that introduces the family and details how this membership will benefit them (including, but not limited to, importance of health, health goals, and time willing to commit).  Three worthy families will be chosen from all entries.  Essays may be emailed to or mailed to Expressions of Health, 6170 Ridge Road, Oscoda, MI 48750 no later than Dec. 7, 2012.  Families will be notified by Dec. 10, 2012.


    If you are aware of any families that may like to participate, please pass this information along to them.

    Thanks, and happy holidays!!!!!!!!

    Martha and Jeff

  7. Tips for a Healthier Thanksgiving!


    Get Active 

    Create a calorie deficit by exercising to burn off extra calories before you ever indulge in your favorite foods. Make fitness a family adventure by taking a walk early in the day and then again after dinner. It is a wonderful way for families to get physical activity and enjoy the holiday together.


    Eat Breakfast 

    While you might think it makes sense to save up calories for the big meal, experts say eating a small meal in the morning can give you more control over your appetite. Start your day with a small but satisfying breakfast — such as an egg with a slice of whole-wheat toast, or a bowl of whole-grain cereal with low-fat milk — so you won’t be starving when you arrive at the gathering.


    Lighten Up 

    Whether you are hosting Thanksgiving dinner or bringing a few dishes to share, make your recipes healthier with less fat, sugar, and calories. Use fat-free chicken broth to baste the turkey and make gravy, use sugar substitutes in place of sugar and fruit purees instead of oil in baked goods, reduce oil and butter wherever you can and try plain yogurt or fat-free sour cream in creamy dips, mashed potatoes, and casseroles.


    Police your Portions 

    Thanksgiving tables are bountiful and beautiful displays of traditional family favorites. Before you fill your plate, survey the buffet table and decide what you’re going to choose. Then select reasonable-sized portions of foods you cannot live without.


    Skip the Seconds. 

    Try to resist the temptation to go back for second helpings.


    Choose the Best Bets on the Buffet 

    While each of us has our own favorites, keep in mind that some holiday foods are better choices than others. White turkey meat, plain vegetables, roasted sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, defatted gravy, and pumpkin pie tend to be the best bets because they are lower in fat and calories.


    Slowly Savor 

    Eating slowly, putting your fork down between bites, and tasting each mouthful is one of the easiest ways to enjoy your meal and feel satisfied with one plate full of food, experts say. Choosing whole grains, fruits, vegetables, broth-based soups, salads, and other foods with lots of water and fiber add to the feeling of fullness.


    Go Easy on Alcohol 

    Don’t forget those alcohol calories that can add up quickly.


    Be Realistic 

    The holiday season is a time for celebration. With busy schedules and so many extra temptations, this is a good time to strive for weight maintenance instead of weight loss.
    [modified from source WebMD]
  8. New Research: Sit Less and Live Longer!


    The following article cites several new studies that have shown if we reduce the amount of time we sit on a daily basis, we can actually increase our life expectancy. Sitting less than three hours a day could increase life expectancy by 2 years.   Of course, this is not always easy, considering our jobs, but there are simple stretches and exercises outlined in this article to help in those situations.  In fact, by just reducing the amount of time spent sitting in front of the TV each day to less than two 2 hours, life expectancy could increase by 1.4 years.

    As well, this article introduces us to Foundation exercises, which attack the root cause of most low back pain…weakness and imbalance in the posterior chain of muscles (muscles involving the pelvis, spine, and hips).    The simple and basic Foundation exercises displayed in this article are enormously beneficial to anyone who finds themselves sitting for an extended period of time as well as to those of us with ongoing low back pain.

    We urge you to read this article, sit less, and live longer!!

  9. Appetite for Health


    Great news!!!  Our Spriggles Motivational Books for Children are being featured on the wonderful Appetite for  Health website, a great site dedicated to offering positive nutritional information and inspiration with a unique twist.  For a chance to win a free set of these books, please visit by midnight, October 28, 2012.

  10. “Sitting Kills”


    Published in the Archives of Internal Medicine (2012), a study involved 222,497 Australian adults, aged 45 and older.  Researchers compared data from the “45 and Up” Study with mortality data from early 2006 through late 2010.  Not surprisingly, parallels emerged between daily sitting time and premature death.


    This data was consistent across the sexes, age groups, body mass index categories, and even physical activity levels.

    So the bottom line is….get off your bottom.  Don’t sit, get fit!!!


    story from IDEA Fitness Journal, July/August 2012