Lisa Waldrep

Green Pizza Recipe

At CURE Program, we encourage others to try healthy recipes. We love the green pizza recipe from eating well and would like to share it with you.

Makes: 6 servings

Active Time: 

Total Time: 


  • 1 pound prepared pizza dough, preferably whole-wheat
  • 2 cups chopped broccoli florets
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 5 ounces arugula ,any tough stems removed, chopped (about 6 cups)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup prepared pesto
  • 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese


  1. Position oven rack in the lowest position; preheat to 450°F. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to about the size of the baking sheet. Transfer to the baking sheet. Bake until puffed and lightly crisped on the bottom, 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, cook broccoli and water in a large skillet over medium heat, covered, until the broccoli is crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in arugula and cook, stirring, until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Spread pesto evenly over the crust, top with the broccoli mixture and sprinkle with cheese. Bake until crispy and golden and the cheese is melted, 8 to 10 minutes.


  • Per serving: 323 calories; 13 g fat ( 4 g sat , 7 g mono ); 19 mg cholesterol; 33 g carbohydrates; 15 gprotein; 3 g fiber; 511 mg sodium; 241 mg potassium.
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (45% daily value), Calcium (34% dv), Vitamin A (31% dv).
  • Carbohydrate Servings: 2
  • Exchanges: 2 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 medium fat meat, 1 1/2 fat

The power of reframing

“Never let go of hope. One day you will see that it all has finally come together. What you have always wished for has finally come to be. You will look back and laugh at what has passed and you will ask yourself… ‘How did I get through all of that?” ~Author Unknown

Almost everything in life can be reframed! Do you think that the cup is half empty or half full? Is this a crises or is this an opportunity for growth? Are you fearful or are you simply excited? At one point or another, everybody in the self-development field has addressed the concept of reframing, or changing the frame of reference of a situation.  This month we are going to talk about reframing the story that you tell others about your life, so that it is presented in the most positive perspective possible. Why is this important?

The key point to understand is that after reframing an event, a new meaning is created. When that meaning is activated or validated by a person (when he or she says, “yes, that is true”) it becomes a belief. As you have heard all your life, whatever you believe becomes your reality.

Reframing is the strategy to change the meaning of something (an event, experience, news, or situation) by creating another frame (reference point) to it. Basically, reframing creates a new and different interpretation that reaches a different conclusion. It allows you to feel and behave in a different way. It is a very powerful tool for mastery if one is committed to a successful and enjoyable life.

A basic example of reframing can be someone who attempted to do something and she did not get the desired outcome she wanted. Under this scenario, the outcome was a failure. Well, an empowerment coach could help that person to reframe the meaning of that event, and instead of labeling it a “failure, ” can decide to label it as “one more way you have learned how not to do something”, or “getting one step closer to your goal.” Does that make sense?

Below I have listed some simple Thriving Techniques that can help you to reframe a situation and connect the dots of your own story in a more positive, empowering way:



·        Connect the dots in your life and reframe your story as a powerful, positive journey.

·        Choose to be positive; remember, rejection is merely a concept that exists only in your head.  When you experience rejection, you are no worse off physically than you were before.

·        See perceived obstacles as opportunities to grow and to stretch

·        Persistence allows you to pursue your goals.  In the face of obstacles, and feedback, you can adjust your course and reach your ultimate goal!  Persistency equates success.  Persistence is the difference between mediocrity and excellence.

·        Live in the magical moment of “NOW”.

And remember what John C. Lily said, “Every belief is a limit to be examined and transcended.”

Good luck on your journey, and the joy the empowering, exciting process of effective communication! 


In Love We Trust,

Lisa Waldrep  

Sugar Free Foods linked to Weight Gain

Sugar free foods linked to weight gain

Sugar free foods linked to weight gain



It’s old news that sugar can cause weight gain, but what about sugar-free foods and drinks? Few Americans know the disastrous effects of Aspartame. They may know it is “bad for you,” but it is not as well known that Aspartame can actually cause weight gain due to insulin spiking and fat storage. This is bad because the food industry is literally using foods containing artificial ingredients and deemed “sugar free” and “fat free” and marketing them as foods and drinks that are helpful for weight loss and maintenance.

A recent article published by FashionablyFamous, addresses the issues surrounding artificial sweeteners and summarizes the findings of a study conducted by Dr. John Olney, a neuroscientist at Washington State. Dr. Olney recently conducted a study measuring the effects of Aspartame. The rats that were given Aspartame showed a physiologic change in brain chemistry , unlike the rats that were not given Aspartame. In addition, aspartic acid was found to cause holes in the brains of the rats who were given the ingredient.

Remember to exercise extreme caution when drinking or eating packaged foods labeled “sugar free” or “low fat.” These foods are actually causing weight gain- the exact opposite of what consumers buy them for. It is always best to stick with the foods that are natural and unprocessed.

Lower Stress Through Superior Self Care

Women today need Self-Care More than Ever
Lisa Waldrep explains the importance of self-care for the modern day woman

Lisa Waldrep explains the importance of self-care for the modern day woman

Imagine this scenario: A woman gets on a plane with her two small children, on her way to visit family across the country. Suddenly, the flight attendant announces that the plane is experiencing extreme turbulence and instructs all passengers to put on their oxygen masks. The woman does not place the oxygen mask on either of her children. She places the mask on to her mouth and inhales deeply several times. She then places the oxygen mask on one of her children and tells him to take a deep breath. She then switches the oxygen mask onto her other child, instructing her to do the same. Together the three of them continue to take turns breathing in the oxygen. The mother wasn’t being selfish- she had to put the mask on herself before her children so that she would be alive and able to help them receive enough oxygen. She was forced to put herself before them.

Women experience so much stress today and the need for women to practice self-care has never been more urgent. Yet many of the women whom I have worked with struggle with the concept of self- care. They feel guilty. They feel selfish for putting their needs before anyone or anything else. I use what I like to call the “airplane analogy” to explain to my clients that in order to be the best possible YOU, you absolutely have to consider self-care top priority.

I am certainly no stranger to stress. My two beautiful twins are the light of my life. They came to me eight years ago and were diagnosed with Autism shortly after. In addition, my husband and I also own several small businesses specializing in weight loss and wellness, where my husband is a weight loss surgeon and is on call at all times for his patients, which many times requires him to leave unexpectedly. It’s a lot to handle, and sometimes I don’t feel like I can do it. Self-care is what gets me through the rough days and unexpected challenges that come along with a marriage, motherhood, and running a business. If I didn’t have my “me time” I wouldn’t be able to function.

Here are some of the techniques that I make sure to practice regularly:

1. Prayer & Meditation. Every day at the same time I set aside a half hour for myself to reflect and get in tune with myself. I do this first thing in the morning- before the kids wake up, before I start responding to e-mails and phone calls and before I get dressed for the day.

2. Schedule and separate time alone with your significant other. Some people are skeptical of this, but I have found that it is essential for me to schedule AND separate work from pleasure. Because my husband and I regularly attend business mixers, I make sure that we have at least one night per week where he and I have a private dinner together- no business calls, no technology, no kids. Unless it’s an emergency, it can wait.

3. Practice good nutrition, not depravation. Good nutrition is so important, but I don’t eat healthy 100% of the time. Being trained as a specialist in psychology of eating often gives people the impression that I practice a “strict diet” 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, when in reality, I make sure to get plenty of fresh foods and eat mindfully. I will indulge once in awhile if I really feel like I have to have that scoop of ice cream.

4. Make a conscious effort to do at least one activity a day that makes you happy. Even if it’s just something small, like writing someone you love a handwritten note, or walking your dog. The little things in life can make a big impact.

5. Reach out to friends and family for support. I cannot imagine if I did not have my friends and family to reach out to. All of us need a little help sometimes and turning to your family and friends during times of need is one of the best uses of self-care that one can practice.

Are Your Hormones Causing Weight Gain? Tips to Fix Hormonal Imbalance!

Are Hormones Causing You to Gain Weight?

Our hormones play a big role when it comes to our health and weight, but many of our patients are usually unfamiliar with our  hormones actually are and how they influence our bodies on a daily basis. I usually explain to our patients that hormones are important because they transport chemicals in our bodies to various organs that we need in order to function properly. Our bodies produce hormones through our endocrine glands and our sexual reproductive organs (Testes in men, Ovaries in women) and can affect everything from our development to our metabolism, reproduction, and our mood. According to Marc David, Published Author and Founder of the Psychology of Eating Institute, there are many things to consider when it comes to hormonal imbalance and trying to lose or maintain weight. Here are some of the basic tips that I recommend and try to practice regularly:

1. Avoid “Man-Made Fats.” We’ve all heard it before, “fats are good for you, as long as they’re the GOOD type of fats!” But this can get confusing (even our  Nutrition Coach admits that she sometimes gets confused!) As a rule of thumb, anything that has been made by man should be avoided when it contains fat, ESPECIALLY trans fat. Trans Fat (think Margarine, Oreos, Burger King, Snickers, Movie theatre popcorn, etc) has been linked to Obesity, Heart Disease, Diabetes, and many other diseases that are literally causing death in humans. Trans Fats are so bad for you that some states are working to remove “partially hydrogenated oils” (another name for trans fat) from grocery stores and restaurants. You should try to consume “healthy” fats that are not man made, which include coconut oil, fish oil, avocado, and nuts, to name a few.

2. Get Proper Sleep!  Lack of sleep can increase our hunger and appetite through a hormone called Leptin. According to David,  Leptin is a “master hormone” and if it is not balanced in our bodies, none of our other hormones will function properly! This is extremely important! Lack of sleep has also been linked to Cortisol, which is the “stress hormone” that increases our risk for Heart Disease, Hypoglycemia, Strokes, and the storage of belly fat.

3. Avoid Too Much Caffeine. Your cup of Joe (or 3 or 4) can cause major dysfunction. It can cause your hormones to go haywire; especially when you are under stress or are pregnant. Try to limit your consumption of caffeine if you cannot remove it from your diet. Herbal teas are a great substitute, and you can also add 1 tablespoon of blended coconut oil for a “healthy fat coffee!”

4. Exercise Lightly. Exercising too intensely can cause problems if your hormones are  imbalanced. Try to focus on your sleeping habits and routine while performing low- impact exercises such as walking and swimming. You should try to avoid high-impact exercises until your hormones are regulated.

5. Take Advantage Of Supplements- they can work wonders for your waistline and  regulating your hormones if paired with a proper diet and lifestyle. We often give our patients our Magnesium and Vitamin D supplements to help them improve their weight loss/maintenance habits and moods.

These tips can help you regulate your hormones and manage your weight more effectively. Remember, hormones are “messengers” of the chemicals in our bodies, and we need them in order to function appropriately.

– Information from the desk of Lisa Waldrep,CPC, PES

Is Exercise Making You Fat?

As a coach, I am always surprised how many clients come to see Dr. Waldrep and the rest of our team frustrated because they “cannot seem to lose the weight.” Everyone always says that it’s simple, “just eat less, and exercise more,” right?  Wrong. If losing weight were that simple, we would all be thin. Exercise is not a great way to lose weight.  I love this explanation, according to Rachel Reilly’s article, written on Daily Mail:  “‘One pound of fat has 3,500 calories, If you ran a 26-mile marathon, where you burn about 100 calories per mile, you would burn 2,600 calories.  Surprisingly that 26 mile marathon falls 900 calories short of burning one pound of fat!” So there must be multiple factors taking place, factors that the simple “calories in, calories out” formula does not address.  When we simplify the weight loss process to that type of thinking, it leaves people with little confidence and even lower self-esteem.

Woman measuring her slim body isolated on white

The fact is that exercise alone is NOT a great way to lose weight.  In fact, exercise can effectively cause you to GAIN weight.  We tend to overestimate the amount of calories that we’re burning when we exercise and then use it to justify eating that snack we’ve been craving.  “I worked out for an hour and a half, I deserve that extra piece of pizza” is a common justification that I often hear from our patients. The truth is, while exercise is great for your cardiovascular health, it’s not a great way to lose weight by itself.  I was intrigued by Dr. Waldrep’s statement to a group of weight loss surgery patients the other day.  “Exercise is not really very effective for weight loss, people misunderstand that.  They don’t realize that exercise is most important after you’ve already lost the weight. It’s more beneficial for weight maintenance.”

That’s oneof the reasons Dr. Waldrep and the CURE Program team stress that there is nothing wrong with a person who exercises to no avail.  Their frustrations are normal, and they have not “failed” at anything.  They simply haven’t been educated properly. Programs, like CURE, which integrate approaches such as the psychology of eating, excavate the underlying emotional and behavioral conditions that cause weight gain.  We help patients triumph in their weight loss because we let them know that they are normal and that the system has failed with all its “quick fix” solutions and unmet promises.  Weight loss involves taking many things into consideration.  I am proud to work with Dr. Waldrep, because our team makes it a goal to demystify all of the myths surrounding weight loss, allowing people to actually lose the weight that they have struggled to shed for years.

– From the desk of Lisa Waldrep,CPC, PES


Reflecting on Rosy Esparza rollercoaster victim and obesity

 In light of the recent death of a woman, Rosy Esparza,  while riding a roller coaster at Six Flags in Texas, I am reminded of all of our patients who come in before surgery with the simplest of dreams:  “I want to pick up my grandchildren, I want to paint my nails, I want to ride a roller coaster….” So many overweight  and obese people are afraid of doing the simplest things, and for good reasons. It is literally dangerous for morbidly overweight people to ride a roller coaster, because the restraining belt isn’t made to safely close properly on the lap.

Roller Coaster Credit :

I am not saying that this is the case in the recent situation at Six Flags.  Although the woman who died was obese, that isn’t necessarily the cause of the accident.  But I triggered in my memory of all those conversations with OUR patients where they expressed a desire to do things that the rest of the world takes for granted.
I think that is one of the reasons I am so passionate about what Dr. Waldrep and I do to help patients achieve their weight loss goals and weight management.  It might not seem grand or exciting… but facilitating someone to have weight loss surgery is like helping someone to gain back their life. We have learned from our patients and through personal experience just how drastic the toll obesity can take on daily living and activities.
Some of my favorite clients have expressed not only an increased energy after surgery (imagine carrying around 10 ten pound bowling balls and being able to finally set them down!) but also the release of fear and shame associated with being obese.  I know that patients, typically afraid of  flying, can finally get on a plane – simply because they don’t have to face the embarrassment of asking for a seat belt extender.  I wonder in the back of my head if Rosy Esparza didn’t wonder if the restraining belt didn’t seem to slide into place as it should, but was perhaps too embarrassed to bring it to anyone’s attention; fearing the shame of being led of the roller coaster because they determined she was ‘too fat” to safely ride it. Just a thought….
Regardless, my prayers go out to the family.  I cannot help but admire a woman who obviously lived her life to the fullest and had many people who loved her.
~From the desk of Lisa Waldep, CURE Program’s Certified Professional Coach & Psychology of Eating Specialist

CURE Program Before & After

CURE Program Before & After

CURE Program Before & After: We love helping our patients transform their lives through weight and wellness programs. If you’re struggling with your weight, body image, or relationship issues, visit our website at to learn more about how we can help!

Five Smart Tips for a Healthy 4th of July

Healthy 4th of July

Many of us will be enjoying the holiday tomorrow, but are also wondering about how to enjoy the food and spirits without jeopardizing our waistlines! There are a lot of healthy “secrets” that you can easily take advantage of. Whether you’re socializing with friends and family or cooking at home, there are many different things you can do to maintain your weight. We’ll share some of our favorite healthy tips with you so that you can have fun and enjoy the holiday while eating still eating healthy!

1. Have a healthy snack- It’s always a good idea to have a healthy, balanced snack about an hour prior to arriving to the party. Make sure you eat some protein to keep you satisfied and full. A medium apple with a couple of tablespoons of almond butter or a handful of unsalted almonds will help you feel more in control and not as tempted when you arrive.

2. Bring your own 4th of July dish- Bringing a healthy dish is the best way to enjoy the holiday without feeling like you’re depriving yourself. By bringing your own dish, you can be sure that you’re still eating healthy without having to worry about the extra calories. Check out some of our favorite 4th of July dishes here.

3. Avoid foods that will jeopardize your goals- Healthy choices aren’t always plentiful at bbq’s or parties, but you need to avoid the bad items if you want to continue to maintain your weight. Steer clear of anything fried or refined including chips, bread, desserts, and heavy sauces or dips. Enjoy healthy foods such as fresh fruit and vegetables, lean grilled meat, and whole-wheat pasta dishes. Beware of salads with heavy or creamy dressing- it’s best to bring your own!

4. Be smart about what you eat- If you do decide that you absolutely have to have a not-so-healthy beverage or sliver of apple pie, make sure that you limit it to one drink or a small slice. Remember that a glass of champagne or wine is okay- but not in addition to dessert and bread.

5. Stay active & have fun- Getting physical activity can help you feel great and can also help work off any of the extra calories that you eat during the day. Go for a walk or a jog in the morning to get your cardio in. High Intensity Interval (HIIT) workouts will help boost your metabolism and keep your body burning calories throughout the day. Alternate 30 seconds of jogging or sprinting with 1 minute of walking for 25 minutes. It will save you time, you’ll have great energy, and you’ll also work off any unwanted calories!

The most important thing is to remember to enjoy yourself and to not worry too much about your diet the majority of the time. Remember to relax and to enjoy your time with friends and family. Happy Independence Day!