Tag: diet

Day 12

Well, no eating out today, actually hardly any eating today at all. Not feeling well. I’ve slept most of the day. Good news is that I don’t think I’ve had any seizures. In the past, this exhaustion and illness I think came with seizures. It doesn’t seem that way today and I’ve been able to start feeling better with ibuprofen and a little extra CBD oil. I hope this means a more rapid recovery. In the past, I’ve felt tired and foggy for days.

So, thus far today I’ve just had an apple and a few cups of cottage cheese. We’ll see if my stomach is ready for any more later today.

Day 10

Okay, so I will admit I haven’t entered the food I ate today into My Fitness Pal. It’s been an unusual day of eating, not a bad day, but an unusual one. I had two work events today that involved buffets. So, while I just had a smoothie for breakfast, lunch and dinner were both a bit more filling and varied.

I did well with fruits and vegetables intake. I started the day with a smoothie that had rhubarb, greens, apple, banana, and strawberries. It’s a tasty start to the day! With lunch there was a nice salad and a more veggies, though I don’t know if there was much more health quality with some super cheesy, cheesy broccoli with rice as well as some lasagna. Then tonight’s dinner had more salad and some green beans. I wasn’t able to measure things out at lunch or dinner, but I know that I had at least 4 cups at breakfast. So, I’m going to guess that I was between 7 and 8 cups today.

It is proving quite possible and not all that difficult to eat 6 cups of fruits and vegetables per day. 9 cups is a bit more challenging, but I think is more doable when I eat at home.

Now, I am hoping for nice weather tomorrow to get back to my garden to see what might be ready to harvest. With so much rain lately it’s been a challenge to get to the garden and there may be mostly weeds to harvest. Last I was out there though it looked like some greens would be ready soon along with maybe some peas and the first of the tomatoes. I am hopeful.

Plus, tomorrow is the local farmers market, so even if my garden is growing mostly weeds there will be other options. Fresh, tasty, local, and affordable, all the best!

9 Days and Learning

Well, today was a better day than yesterday. It was still interesting, but better. My breakfast was filled with fruits and veggies. I started with banana and strawberries with a little plain yogurt. Then I took a apple/rhubarb/ strawberry smoothie along to work to sip on throughout the morning.

Work was where things got interesting. I arrived to find that the carpets had just been shampooed. The offices had been spared, but the common areas were all still wet with powerful fans blowing cyclone winds. One of my workmates spoke of how as a young person he’d considered working on a Navy ship. Now, he felt like he knew what it was like with those incredibly loud fans. Instead of being wise and going back home to work, I just closed my office door. I didn’t realize the impact until I had to go to a meeting in a room that had been cleaned. After 2 hours in that meeting with those carpet cleaning toxins I felt simply stoned!

So, the morning went well diet wise. Lunch was small and tasty, homemade tomato soup with cheese and a side of broccoli and carrots with hummus. But, after this afternoon’s meeting in my carpet cleaner stoned state, I went out for a burger with some sweet potato fries. It was quite tasty. I made it to over 6 cups of veggies. I don’t think I made it up to 9 again yet though.

I’ve not quite hit my calorie lowering goals yet. But, looking back at my Fitness Pal reports over the past few months it seems that my average calorie consumption may be going down slightly. It’s difficult to tell for sure because before beginning this challenge there were quite a few days that I missed entering my meals. However, I know that I’d often skip entering if I knew I’d eaten a lot or things that I wished I hadn’t.

It seems that it is a good way for me to look at food, focusing on making sure I eat a lot of something good rather than getting caught up in making sure that I’m not eating something unhealthy. It works on the concept of gifting myself rather than denying myself, or at least I think it does. Only nine days in it’s difficult to tell. I’ve not lost weight yet, but I’m feeling healthy and positive and that’s a good start.

One Week In On The Fruits and Veggies Challenge

Well, if I made six cups of fruits and veggies today, it was just by the skin of my teeth. I took a trip to South Dakota this afternoon. It was the 152nd annual Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Wacipi (powwow) and it felt time to go. I am glad that I went. Powwows, however, are not the place to find nice, healthy fruits and vegetables. They are though the place to find the best fry bread known to humanity and that’s reason enough to go.

So, my food at home was good and healthy; yogurt with strawberries, mango, and banana, fresh green beans to snack on, things like that. At the powwow though I enjoyed a delicious Indian taco and some nachos with cheese. The day wound up a bit under 1600 calories, so not too bad even with some high carb indulgences which were well worth it.

The food was just one piece of the powwow. I’ve gone to many before and they are always good for the heart. There’s a special power in the drum. It’s good to feel the music. I find myself watching the dancers, thinking it’s probably nearly time for me to step away, but I can’t just yet after all it’s men’s fancy, my favorite dance. Then a few minutes later I think it’s near time to go, but I can’t right now, it’s women’s traditional, my favorite dance. This goes on through all the different dances. Each has it’s own strength. Each holds a role in teaching the children to be proud of who they are. It’s a gift to get to sit there on the sidelines and witness what remains, how the strength of generations continues forward never to be squelched by the colonizers.

I sat today on the sidelines when the older man sitting in front of me turned to talk with me. He asked where I was from when I answered and asked where he was from he told me, just down the road and then proceeded to speak to me in Dakota. I looked at him confused. He translated what he’d said for me. He told me he’d learned English when he went to school and asked me if I was surprised that he was Native. I was a bit, but I’ve known a fair number of blond haired, blued eyed Native people in Minnesota, so it wasn’t too big a surprise. Then he went on and told me stories of his life. He must have talked for at least an hour talking of his family, ancestors, speaking in both English and Dakota. He shared so many bits of wisdom. It was one of those life moments that cannot be anticipated and reaches in to do amazing things.

It was a good day and has been a good first week. Let’s see where next week goes.

6 Days Into the Journey

I had a strong start today with an apple/rhubarb/strawberry smoothie with just a bit of greens thrown in and some scrambled eggs with greens, banana peppers, broccoli, and tomatoes. It sounds like a lot of food as I write it down, but it was only a bit over 400 calories. It’s really amazing how much one can eat when you eat the right foods.

My dog, Buddy, and I celebrated his first birthday this morning with a trip to Monson Lake State Park for a nice little hike. He’s so happy when he gets to go on an adventure in the woods, sniffing for treasure everywhere, finding mud puddles to lay in, meeting new friends. We followed up our hike with a bit of human indulgence. We went to Willmar for a stop at Culvers. I was happy with myself though for not getting any pop or ice cream, just a cod sandwich and onion rings. Still, a meal like that is roughly 1,000 calories, the same as the total of my other two meals for the day and it’s not really more food. It’s just the wrong food to eat too often. I am happy that there isn’t a Culvers near Morris and it’s a special treat to go.

We did take advantage of being in Willmar though and gave Buddy another treat for the day. We went to the dog park. Buddy had a great time! He met two huge Great Danes, Stout and Porter, who were just a few weeks younger than him and each about 70 lbs bigger. They came with their little friend, Ebony, a Springer Spaniel mix about a year older than Bud, but closer to his size. It was a laugh to watch Buddy play and wrestle with his new pals. It was a gift to see him so friendly with the giants and to feel his trust as he ran toward them and then would come back to me when he needed a bit of space and assurance. I am grateful for his trust. He’s a good friend.

The rest of the day was napping, joining the community band in a parade, watching the pageant at the Starbuck Heritage Days, and just generally relaxing. It was good.

I am doing really well with getting 6-9 cups of vegetables and fruits each day, though some days, like today, I’m at the lower end. My challenge is to keep away from too many trips to the places that serve me high calorie and unhealthy options. I can get there.

Day 5 of the 78 Day Challenge

Thinking today about my recent visit with the dietitian. It was basic visit, too basic for me. I’ve read a lot, watched a lot of videos, and listened to quite a few professionals in health care over the past twenty or so years. But, I needed to see a dietitian to get the okay on dietary changes so that my neurologist and general practitioner might know I’ve seen a professional to approve how I feed myself. It’s a messed up system. After all, who knows our bodies better than ourselves? Still, I visited with hopes that she could give me new insights that would help me along my journey. Here’s what I came up with.

She encouraged me, as health professionals do, to pre-plan my meals and write out a shopping list. She told me that it’s okay to sometimes go out to eat and indulge in my favorite pizza, but I should have a salad as well so that I would fill up and not eat as much pizza. I was frustrated as I left with that simple advice, late on my way to another meeting.

Today, I thought about it a bit more as I indulged in some of my favorite pizza choices along with a large salad and some pickled beets. I realized that even with the salad and beets that I could easily eat just as many slices of pizza as ever. I’d just added a bit more food rather than cut any out. With that I was reminded how little food has to do with physical hunger, at least that’s true in my world as a reasonably economically stable white person in the United States today. Eating is more about filling a space, emotional or social or maybe something else, but it isn’t simply physical. We eat for the comfort of eating. I certainly don’t go to Pizza Ranch for the quality of their food. I go to read a book, enjoy some quiet time, imbibe in some stuff that is rich and greasy and some that is sweet, decompress from whatever stress I’ve been facing. I don’t go to fill my caloric needs. That’s not why we eat, at least not the primary reason. The question then becomes, how else might I fill those needs?

I don’t know the answer to that yet. I do know that answer needs to be found for my happiness. Meanwhile, I think I hit six cups of fruits and vegetables today, and, not surprisingly given that I went to Pizza Ranch, I wound up high on calories, carbs, proteins, fats, and sugar. Still, much better than a lot people in the US, so it’s okay. I am on my way.

Halfway Through Week One

This experience has me baffled at the moment. I weighed myself this afternoon and the scale read the highest that it has in more than a year. I hope that it means that the batteries are dying in my scale.

Today was a low calorie day. I did well today with my fruits and vegetables intake. I hit nine cups! Strawberries, mango, banana, rhubarb, asparagus, mixed greens, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber, and a bit of hummus. The hot weather helped. I didn’t want to cook so smoothies, yogurt and fruit, fresh vegetables and hummus were all good options for the day.

I suspect that at some point I will start to see weight loss. But, I wonder when? It is a strange thing that my weight is up rather than stable or down. I think I need to do some more reading to better understand what is happening.

I feel good though. It’s been a quiet couple of days without a whole lot going on and sometimes being so quiet can get me feeling down. I noticed today that I didn’t feel that. I just felt quiet, but not melancholy. I don’t know if my eating over the past few days has impacted my emotions, but I can hope that it has.

Now, I suppose might be a good time to put some thought into my grocery list for the weekend.

And oh, for those who’ve been following this journey, I waited for morning to have the berries and yogurt. I recognized last night that I was just wanting to eat for entertainment and not to assuage my hunger. I decide to find other ways to entertain myself.

Day 3

Still high on the calories, that, I will admit, was due to a trip to Pizza Ranch though. The good news though on my pizza indulgence was that it included a large salad and a little less pizza then previous trips. I don’t know how much that matters given that their salads are made with spinach that is probably well sprayed with chemicals throughout its growth and nuts that are glazed with sugar. But still, it tells me that it is possible to have a meal out that is mainly reasonably healthy food and still enjoy it.

I didn’t hit the full nine cups of fruits and vegetables today, but I am within my goal of six to nine cups with roughly six cups. Given that most Americans are eating less than two cups of fruits and vegetables a day, I feel quite good about that. Plus, I am still considering a bowl of freshly picked strawberries with some yogurt. It feels a bit late and I am well over the calories for the day, but I just went to the U-Pick this afternoon and came home with just over twelve pounds of berries. It seems a shame not to eat some right away. Doesn’t it? Hmmm…..

2 Days In

Day 2 of the 78 day challenge was a hungry one, but I am happy to say that I didn’t slide into the world of pizza and I did well with getting about nine cups of fruits and vegetables.

A purist in this journey toward better health might say that I’m depending too much on berries and bananas. But I’m going to say that in the world of sweets that some berries and bananas with a bit of cream and some sugar-free chocolate chips is a pretty good healthy option and I’m willing to go with it if it means that I’m not eating cake and ice cream.

For dinner I treated myself to dinner out at Mi Mexico. So, my calories were high for today. Still with a vegetarian option, I was able to keep on track with my vegetable intake goals. My protein, which is typically low, was also right on target. I’m hoping that this means tomorrow will not be a hungry day.

Feeling good. I am already not as tired as I was a week ago. I suppose, at this point, it’s mere coincidence, but we’ll see how it continues. I am hopeful that my health will continue to improve.

Sweet Holidays

About one and a half years ago I changed my diet. I didn’t go on a diet. In my experience, diets are almost always temporary fixes that don’t lead to long term solutions. I opted instead to change the foods I eat for a lifetime in order to live longer and better with hopes that it would help decrease my seizures and help with the bouts of depression that I’d been facing.

I worked with an old friend who now is a medical professional to test my food allergies. We found nine. Not surprisingly, most were things that I was eating daily, things like potatoes and cane sugar. I was craving these items just like any other addict would crave the substances that harm them. So, my list of harmful substances in hand I cleaned out my kitchen and began again.

It was tough at first, but I began to quickly see the benefits and they kept me going. Over time I lost 50lbs, found greater energy, began to be able to sleep through the night again, felt mentally clearer, and stopped needing to run to the bathroom every two hours. The change of eating habits definitely has helped my life a great deal. It’s hard to say whether it’s cut my seizures or not, but I’m down to about one a year which is much better than bouts of them every few months where I was a few years ago.

Over the holidays I decided to try an experiment to see how my body has healed in the last one and a half years. I decided that while I was visiting family for the week between Christmas and New Year’s that I wouldn’t stick with my healthy food choices. I wouldn’t go overboard, but I would allow myself things like sugary Christmas cookies and cheesy potatoes if I wanted them.

It is amazing to me the impact that food has on our bodies. There were many meals this past week that told me immediately that they weren’t right for me. I wondered how I handled the food roller coaster for the first forty-five years of my life. I’d find myself eating some food that I’d once loved; processed macaroni and cheese, buttered noodles from Noodles and Company, rice crispy bars, all these heavily processed, sugar laden, super carb foods that were one minute tasty on the tongue and the next causing me to say “ugghhh, I should not have done that.” Food should not elicit that kind of response.

Over the week I found that most of my allergens I can live with or without and not care too much, but there is that one demon. Yes, you probably guessed it, sugar. I am only allergic to cane sugar, but just eliminating that from my diet significantly cut my overall sugar use. When I reintroduced it this past week, I suddenly found myself reaching for more and more Christmas cookies even though I knew that within the hour I’d want a nap. Every day I slept for about an hour in the afternoon. Every night I got up at least once. I could see and feel the changes in my complexion and just my body overall even in just nine short days. And, the cravings were amazing. It is a strange thing to find myself thinking about the next cookie or piece of chocolate or whatever.

I am glad that I did the experiment and glad to be home and going back to my normal way of eating. I’ll probably be juice fasting for a few days to rid myself of toxins. Then, I hope I can keep passing all the sugary processed stuff everywhere and get back to being healthy. Wishing you all the best of health in the new year.