Eric and Maleka Beal of BetterChoices


Eric and Maleka Beal of BetterChoices

“Making one better choice at a time”
Interviewed and written by Aaron Robinson - Editor
 
Maleka and Eric Beal

When Eric and Maleka Beal packed up a couple computers and their two loving children to leave New Orleans for a hurricane evacuation they never realized that their life would change forever. While staying at a Houston hotel in Texas for a couple of days, they both would later watch the news, becoming surprisingly informed that they couldn’t come home due to their home and town being flooded by 8 feet of water. Unfortunately, they lost everything due to Hurricane Katrina. Because of these unlikely circumstances taking precedence in their life, such as unhealthy eating and thoughts that lead them to make the wrong decisions; they would eventually overcome the horrible devastation and later make choices to better not only their lives but others as well. “We bounced around to 3 hotels and lived in the last one for three months. We had no access to a kitchen. Even if I wanted to cook we couldn’t,” says Eric who proudly served five years with the United States Army. He is an honored Gulf War combat veteran and recipient of the Kuwaiti Liberation Medal.

After 15 years of marriage and surviving Hurricane Katrina the couple has since started a healthy lifestyle company, BetterChoices, which is dedicated to teaching, motivating, & empowering people to change their lives by making one better choice at a time. “Actually to break it down in our own personal lives, it started in 2006 when I went to the doctor’s office. She checked my temperature; it was alright. My blood pressure was a little elevated. When it came time for me to get on the scale it was a problem. The scale couldn’t actually consent how much I weighed. So they were a little confused. She goes to the front to get some other women to help and I see hands moving all around me. All of a sudden I heard the nurse on the right-hand side say 398 pounds, write it down. That blew my mind. So at that point I decided to make a change to live longer. I started working out the very next day. It took her [Maleka] about 3 days. She kept giving me excuses of why she couldn’t commit to one hour a day. I sat her down and said God gave us 24 hours within a day, you are worth at least one. We put anything and everything and everybody before us and never asked who’s going to look after self,” explains Eric regarding what occurred in he and his wife’s life that made them come together in hopes of making a positive change in other people’s life.

When it comes to BetterChoices, Eric and Maleka, both being life coach teachers, continue to educate about healthy living & weight loss, marriage & relationships, organization & structure, just to name a few. “The beautiful thing about BetterChoices is really when we tell our clients or when we’re working in the community that BetterChoices expands way beyond health. It is the premises of helping folks to understand how, why and what will work for you. The thing that God has given us all is the ability to choose. That’s the one thing that we tend to leave behind. At the end of the day, that’s the only thing that we have, is our ability to make a choice. The goal in life is obvious, it’s to make one better choice at a time,” explains Maleka.

Eric and Maleka
before the weight loss

BetterChoices’s healthy lifestyle company inspires people to become more accountable for their actions and to stop accepting excuses in hopes to bring about real, sustainable life change and happiness. Over the course of the couple’s initiative they have experienced some great accomplishments from a spiritual and mental standpoint for Eric and Maleka. “It’s quite simple, I can’t speak for anybody else but me and my wife, because she was right beside me. No one told us to indulge in the whole entire pack of Oreos, or the whole ice cream container or the whole apple pies. Those were all choices. 3 times a day, 5, 6, or 7 times a week,” clearly expresses Eric. Maleka adds to the conversation. “We let our circumstances and all of these things come into our life and allow them to think they’re interfering with our decision ability. Truth is they don’t. We just have to be empowered to make better choices. A lot of times we don’t know what those additional choices are. It was a lot of things that we overcame together. When I tell you God listens, God listens!”

BetterChoices has 3 core principles and guiding philosophies: Tell the truth, know the options, and it’s a lifestyle. During our daily walk of life, some people are embarrassed or either afraid to make a change or changes in their life. Eric and Maleka share some pointers of how an individual may overcome the notion of fear in order to get over a task or obstacles. “It’s about being aware. We all make choices every day. We tell everybody it took will power. As long as we’re avoiding nutrition’s, we’re going to have the outcome we have. We got caught up on a few things: Taste, food and how much it cost,” explains Eric. “People think willpower is like a magic pill. It’s a constant choice. What are you afraid of? Ask the question am I ready to change? Until people make up their mind in what they want to do, they are not going to do it,” says Maleka.”

Eric and Maleka have also released a cook book called Let’s Cook! BetterChoices Healthy Lifestyle Cookbook where they share 50 of their favorite recipes, including their New Orleans’ favorites such as red beans & rice, sweet potato pie and baked macaroni. This recipe cookbook also includes tips to a healthier lifestyle. They also produced a journal called Truth Journal, where individuals write effective notes and their thoughts to change their thought process and their life. BetterChoices has also began field trips, where they take people to the grocery store. “[The Grocery Store Fill Trip] teaches people how to shop,” excitedly says Maleka. Eric continues, “When people go to the store they go to the middle of the store. That’s where all of the bad stuff is…sodium and bad stuff.” Eric and Maleka are also motivational speakers. They look forward to developing and pursuing more healthy events this summer. “We teach people the basis of creating a healthy lifestyle for themselves and still enjoy the foods they love. You can live a healthier life, lose weight and take care of your family,” says Maleka. BetterChoices additional programs include BC7Healthy Lifestyle Program, where they offer seminars and workshops or group coaching programs, and Healthy Lifestyle Coaching where the power couple raises awareness and empowers clients to make better choices when it comes to reducing blood pressure, regulating glucose levels, improving and controlling cholesterol levels. Nonetheless, eliminating the need for medications.

When it comes to business, Eric and Maleka has over 20 years combined. Eric’s background consists of him owning and operating a commercial collection agency called Professional Asset Recovery that was committed to being the voice of reason and reconciling relationships; whereas, Maleka has owned and operated MJB Design, a small branding/graphic design studio. Some of her other works consist of working successfully to build and unify brands with start-ups, small businesses, organizations, non-profits, and local government. As successful business owners, they share valuable information with individuals looking to make their businesses successful. “It was for us to create a social media platform to make sure we can educate people and motivate people to make great choices, and it’s been amazing to see the amount of people we have been able to help and indirectly through our social media platform,” happily says Maleka as she continues to give encouraging information. “Whatever you are deciding to do…is it going to be long term? You are embarking on a lifestyle. We were on a quest to change our life and our health, not only as a couple but as parents.” “People pay attention when you make changes in your attitude and behavior. The decisions are in you! Follow your dreams and dream and don’t give up no matter how hard it gets. Believe in yourself. Teach other people how to believe in you,” encouragingly states Eric.

After losing everything to Hurricane Katrina, Eric and Maleka are not only winners but champions in their own rights. Although it was July of 2007 before they could move back home; nonetheless, they continue to make a positive impact on people’s lives.

For more information about BetterChoices please visit www.BetterChoices.co.

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