Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Stepping into the world of a plant based diet.

So it's been about two weeks, since I said goodbye to meat.  It's been interesting.  I've had to learn how to cook all new meals.  Now I wouldn't say I'm a gourmet cook, but I can cook and now I'm learning to adapt old favorites into meatless favorites.  If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook you may have seen some of my food pictures.

I've become totally passionate about this new way of life.  I've been reading websites, blogs, searching recipes and reading books.  My current favorite is The Engine 2 Diet, and blog. The author Rip Esselstyn a Texas Firefighter is the son of one of Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr. one of the doctors who brings us the video and cookbook Forks over Knives. Then their is my juicing website that started it all from the movie Fat Sick and Nearly Dead.  I love the way the simply share the information, and explain the health differences in eating a plant strong diet, vs the way America eats.  It makes me think of so many people who are suffering with chronic illness, cancer, and so many other problems that the diet we all consumed have either caused or contributed too.  I just want to share it with everyone.

So what have I've been cooking.  Well all kinds of things.  Since I'm gluten intolerant I can't use the whole wheat things, so that adds an extra challenge to some things.  So I've made pizza with polenta as the crust, and a portabella mushroom as a burger and a pizza crust.  Both yummy.

I've altered a few recipes from Skinny Taste website (another favorite website) that already has great Vegan and Gluten Free recipes.  I took her recipe for Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Zucchini, and altered into a vegan recipe.  It turned out really good.  I substituted the chicken filling for her Arroz Congri (Cuban Rice and Black Beans) and added the zucchini insides in the rice.  Next up I'm going to try making her Spicy Black Bean Burgers, just have to figure out how to substitute the eggs.  It's something new all the time.

I love cooking and juicing.  So here is sample of my daily diets.
Breakfast:  Oatmeal with fruit and Almond Milk and a juice made of carrots, apples, celery, beets, and a lemon.

Lunch:  (yesterday example) Portabella Mushroom pizza.  Mushroom for the crust, pizza sauce and veggies topping it off.

Dinner: sautéed grape tomatoes, carrots, green beans, bell-pepper, and onions, on top of Quina. And a juiced green lemonade.  Kale, lemon, apple, cucumber, celery and a bit of ginger.

Dessert: was frozen banana, strawberries, and pineapple all blended together in my food processor with a bit of Almond milk and vanilla.  It's like frozen yogurt but no added sugar, and it's so good.  I take the left over and put it in Dixie cups with Popsicle sticks and they make great frozen fruit treats.

Snacks: varies, nuts, cocoa and gogi berry bars,  fruit, cut up veggies and raw revolution bars.

Also I drink at least a liter of water a day and some herb teas.

So see it's not so bad.  But the best part is I feel better, and other people can see the difference.  I've lost 8 pounds without even trying.  People are telling me how good I look.  My skin looks better, my hair is looking better.  I now walk through the grocery store untempted.  I know what effect that Stoffer's Lasagna is going to do to me, or that I'll feel sick if I eat bacon and eggs things I use to love so much.

Are there things I miss of course.  Who doesn't love pizza, and burgers.  Going to the Giant's game I won't eat my hot dog however I will partake in the Garlic Fries, even though the grease will make my stomach feel yucky.  And if I do slip off the wagon, I'll just hop back on.  It's okay, I'll probably feel the effects right away.

So yes it's a challenge, eating out is very difficult, but possible.  I've had more people tell me they could never give up their meat of choice.  But for me it's all worth it.  I don't feel sick all the time, I don't need a nap when I come home for lunch two things I thought were just how I had to live feeling that way for the rest of my life.   Now I know I don't have to I'd say it's definitely worth it.

Check in with you all later.


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Wow I have an 8th grader.

It's amazing to me sometimes to look at this picture and realize my baby girl is not so little anymore.

This summer my daughter Brinn turned 13. A major milestone in life, she stepped into the world of teenagers in just a few short years she'll be getting ready for college and moving into a whole new chapter. But I still have 5 more years for sure of her at home.

I'm proud of my daughter. She is kind loyal loving and has a compassionate heart. Her faith is growing more and more and she makes choices with that in mind. She's not ashamed to call herself a Christian and say she loves Jesus.

We have a strong bond and I truly enjoy her and the friends she has. They make me laugh.

Now don't get me wrong Brinn isn't perfect and her dad and I are far from the perfect parents. Brinn is a lot like me so we know what buttons to push. Her room is messy and she doesn't have much interest in changing that. She's sensitive and gets her feelings hurt easy so my joking around or sarcasm can hurt her feelings. But we learn and forgive.

So I pray for my daughter as she grows. Wisdom to be a good and Godly parent. For her to be safe and to grow and continue to deepen her relationship with Jesus and for her future. School marriage and friends.

I know God is watching over us He always has.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Wow I'm going Vegan

What your a what?  I can hear it now from many of my friends, and even some family as I have always loved meat and cheese.  Where will you get your protein?  Not from meat.  Where will you get your calcium? Not from milk or cheese.

So the dietary changes have been happening since June 1.  I found out that my daughter and I can't tolerate wheat, gluten, and dairy.  So we began a journey to find foods to replace the things we use to eat.  Luckily God has put so many people in my path to help guide me through this.

With my health issues, my chiropractor and nutrition specialist have been encouraging me to eat as clean as a diet as I can.  Then they told me I shouldn't eat eggs.  Ok so good by to some of the things I enjoy again.

Now I must say my sister Phyllis, has been talking to me about diet and health changes for years.  My mom did as well.   I can remember being a kid in 1975 and being the only kid who ate whole wheat bread (the chunky kind) fresh ground peanut butter, no sugar cereal and this stuff called carob.  There were no whole foods just teeny little health food markets run by hippies and flower children.  Mom also gave me supplements.  Not Flintstones vitamins but actual swallow the pills and don't argue.  Little did I know how ahead of the game my mom and sister were.  Both of them become vegetarians, except they ate fish, and eggs.  (There's a name for it but I don't know it)

Recently I've watched 3 documentaries.  All about how eating the right foods a micro nutrient diet (plant based diet) can heal your body.  The first was Foodmatters , Fat Sick and Nearly Dead and Forks Over Knives each one is different but yet tells and shows evidence that the way America eats is making us sick, and if we eat micro nutrient vegetable based diet our bodies heal.  My husband was most intrigued with the last two, and had decided to make the change himself.  This is something I never thought would happen.

So now we are looking up Vegan recipes, juicing at least twice a day, and weaning away our unhealthy eating habits.  I'll let you know how it goes.  My goal is to get off my 6 medications, I've already been able to leave my stomach medicine behind.  Get my physical body in healthy shape through diet and exercises, but I'm not on a diet.  Although in a few months I do want to try a 10 day juice fast but I'm still weaning and adjusting to the changes I've made so far.

So what have I given up so far, well you read about the wheat, gluten, eggs, and dairy.  I also gave up coffee and all cafine drinks, soda, and this week processed and artificial sugars.  I'm seeking wisdom in prayer and the people God is bringing into my life.  I already feel better, I have more energy, my skin is starting to change, my water retention is reducing, and I've even lost about 4 lbs.  I'm not an expert but I would encourage people to check out the videos.  I want to be healthy, I want my husband to be healthy, and I want to teach my daughter to be eat healthy and that the food she puts in her body is just as important of a decision as all the other choices she'll make in life.  Our choices today always have an affect on our future.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Starting Over

So if any of my old blog friends are still out there and wondering what happened since 2010, you now know I didn't fall off of the face of the planet.  It's a very long story, and to keep it brief as possible.

In brief 2009 and 2010 were really difficult.  I hit a down hill slide in my health, I was in and out of the hospital and the ER from about Sept of 2009 through most of 2010. My husband's grandma went to be with the Lord in June (on my daughter's birthday) of 2010, he loved her dearly.  In addition my husband lost his job, like many to lay offs in October of 2010, I changed positions in my company to something that would be easier on my health.  I had a dear Aunt pass away from Cancer, then later her son was in a motorcycle accident and lost his leg.  (he is doing wonderfully now).

In 2011, my husband finally got some work although nothing near the income we had before, but it is a job none the less.  In March my mother went to be with the Lord.  It was sudden and unexpected but at 83 she had lived a life of many adventures.  I miss her everyday. 

We lost our home in July of 2011 and moved to were I work, forcing a change in schools for the second year in a row for our daughter who was going from 6 to 7th grade, and age that is already full of insecurity and new experiences.  Once again she had to navigate a new school and make new friends.

There were many other challenges along the way.  I don't share all this to sing you my pity party song.  (although there were plenty of days believe me when I looked to the Heavens and said really Lord, really do I have to do this too.)  I share it to tell you that even through the trials God is faithful.

I no longer have to drive to work, I walk 35 steps from my apartment to my office.  I'm close when my daughter is home, and she even comes and hangs out with me in the office sometimes.  Where we live now is so much easier to get to everything, before everything was a 15 minute drive and if it was commute time even longer, and now it's a shorter drive for my husband to his job. 

My husband has started to look at what his strengths are and how God is using this time too reshape him.  Also learning that giving up all the material things we sought after wasn't anything close to loosing people we love.

My daughter is now enrolled in the top rated middle school in the area, and is doing well with A's and B's.  She has a sweet group of friends, and has become even closer to her youth group friends.  She's even looks at some of the public school discussions from a biblical point of view and we discuss them at home.

As my health had been on such a decline it has forced me to figure out alternatives from the western medicine, and God has been bringing people in my life to help and encourage me through this.  He has also rekindle an old passion of mine from my child hood, and that is animal rescue. For me it's dogs, specifically the misunderstood "Pit Bull"  he has been teaching me the simplest sweetest lessons from some of the most abused and broken dogs. 

Old friends that I haven't seen and talked to in years are now apart of my life again.  They make me laugh and support me and we can just laugh together.  I've made many new friends, some that have made such a huge impact on my life and some I've only met but feel like I've known them forever.

There are so many things that have come from the difficult times but isn't that the way God works.  It's in our weakness and sorrows that we find healing and strength that can only be given by God.

God has moved me to start blogging again.  To share with you, my journey to a healthier lifestyle. From the way I eat to working my way back up to being physically fit.  The lessons and stories of the dogs and other things that touch my heart.  And my journey through Proverbs.

I have given my self a challenge, to really learn to gain my wisdom through God.  We started a series at church on Ecclesiastics and also includes the Proverbs.  My goal is to read all of the Proverbs 1- 30 each month, and really soak them in.  Different versions of text, and study notes, over the next year.  I feel like God has somethings he wants to show me, to guide me and help me understand the changes we've been through. 

If you want to check in and see what I'm up to please do.  I appreciate any positive feed back. 

So hope to see you all around here and there.