Archive for August, 2013

Hello, America

Being healthy is hard if you live in the United States. There is fluoride in the water, GMO “foods” sold without labels in the markets, processed food everywhere and so many overweight people that  you start to think of your extra twenty pounds as being no big deal.

I  have been eating a terrible diet for the past two weeks. I started my new job and they have been providing a lot of meals and most of it is stuff I shouldn’t be eating. It’s a shame, really. In Asian countries it’s acceptable and normal to eat rice, broth, fish and vegetables for meals with unsweetened tea or water. Americans, meanwhile, chow down on pasta with sauces, sugary drinks and desserts. Trying to choose just the salad and water when everyone around you is eating lasagna, lemonade and chocolate cake is really hard. No wonder there are so many fat people here and I am slowly becoming one of them.

This weekend is dedicated to organizing my life so health and wellness are the focus. I need more sleep, more water.  healthier foods and exercise. I don’t have a choice. How? Well, for one since I have to be at work at 7am, it’s going to be “early to bed and early to rise”. New bedtime? 9pm – or 10pm at the latest if occasionally necessary. Then I am going to unpack my overseas shipment and locate my cutting boards, juicer, etc. and start using them. I haven’t figured out yet where exercise is fitting in but the other plan is to be vegan until 6pm. Have you heard of that book? I don’t know where I first read about it but here’s the Amazon link:

http://www.amazon.com/VB6-Before-Weight-Restore-Health/dp/0385344740/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1377964273&sr=8-1&keywords=vegan+until+6

The basic premise is to eat vegan (fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds specifically) until 6pm and then for dinner you can eat what you want in moderation. I think this is great! I am busy at work so I won’t have much temptation anyways but then it allows for me to go to happy hour, go on dates or hang out with friends without being on some crazy restrictive diet plan. I love it and the author had great results with it.

Now if I could only find a time and place to exercise..

Rough Adjustment!

Okay, quick rant: I have been extremely disappointed by food In the States. Since we STILL do not have our overseas shipment (6 weeks+ late) we have been eating out a lot. I have left restaurants multiple times with a stomach ache. Seriously, like 75% of the time! Ethiopian, BBQ, Mexican, Thai, American.. It’s crazy And really surprising. I think most of them probably  use oils we haven’t eaten for almost two years: canola oil, vegetable oil, cottonseed oil, corn oil, etc. For two years we have only been eating olive and coconut oils about 90% of the time so it could be that but it’s not necessarily that. We’ve been eating almost 100% organic and a mostly food cooked at home. And we rarely had stomach disturbances so being home and having issues is annoying and quite surprising! Just not used to it! (When I eat raw though it’s always organic and I’m not sick, bloated, gassy or lethargic at all.)

Anyhoo!! I look forward to posting more soon. I got conjunctivitis and due to my allergic reactions to something in this apartment we were able to get out of our lease. We are moving tomorrow. This weekend we will be out of town and then we start school and work next week. When we get settled and back into our routine, I will get back in the kitchen preparing home-cooked foods, doing regular juicing , exercise and updates on how fierce I am becoming! I need to update you on my (less) dry feet, new hair color, kitchen and more so please hang in there! Thanks!

Fresh Basil Plant

I bought an organic basil plant from the grocery store. This thing is awesome! I just pick off the leaves to add to my salad dressing and a few days later more are there in its place! I don’t know why I am so amazed. 🙂  I guess I just love that I am saving money. As soon as we are in a house I plan on planting a large garden.

IMG_0946On another note, I am almost back to normal. My voice is back but I think I have pink eye! Will go to the doctor tomorrow. Meanwhile, I wrote my apartment complex and explained I think the rug is giving me an allergic reaction. The property  manager is supposed to get back to me tomorrow. I don’t want to move out but I am not sure what other options there are. I asked them if we could remove the carpeting and was told no. I asked to move to a unit with hardwood floors and they say there aren’t any but I know for a fact that underneath my wall to wall carpeting are hardwood floors so maybe they will make an exception. I’ll find out tomorrow.

Down for the Count

I’ve been away from blogging for a while because I am really sick!  Hell, I don’t know if it’s dust or dairy or stress but I feel like crap! Woke up in the middle of the night coughing, can’t sleep, sore throat, post nasal drip.. just plain run down. I haven’t eaten terribly but no energy to do much prepping and planning. Can’t wait to get well and get back on track. In preparation I have bought a food processor (for chopping nuts and dates, etc.) and a new salad spinner and exchanged my juicer because that darn thing did not like kale or celery and those are necessary components of my morning juices and smoothies. I am also excited to start working out again. Still waiting for my shipment from overseas but inside are my yoga and kettle bell tapes that I have never used but plan to when they arrive. The mindset is ready, now I just need the rest of the factors to fall into place!

Dust Allergy!

I’m losing my voice. I don’t know what is going on with me! I used to lose my voice about once a year when I lived in the States but it didn’t happen one time abroad. I had forgotten that this used to happen until it just happened to me this week.

…update: I started this post a couple of days ago and I have been dealing with coughing, sore throat and,  as I type this at 3:32am, being up at night with post nasal drip. Though dairy surely isn’t helping, I actually don’t think that is the cause of my coughing. I think it’s the rug in my new apartment! I haven’t had wall to wall carpeting in two years and now that I have it again I have the problem with coughing and clearing my throat incessantly again. I’m sure this is the cause! I didn’t think it would be an issue but I do have a diagnosed dust allergy and I am sure the rug is the culprit.

Problem now is how to convince my landlord to allow me to switch apartments. I don’t know if this will be a tough sell bit I need a unit with hardwood floors!

Bye-Bye Dairy

I have a full-on cold. The real deal, like with phlegm and everything. I can’t remember the last time I was sick. I used to get sore throats in the tropics but I rarely had phlegm and coughing. I think the sore throats there were more due to the pollution but this seems to be directly related to poor health/compromised immune system. I find this curious because I am sleeping a lot more. I don’t feel as tired during the day so I think I must be sleeping better and my stress level has been reduced considerably. The only thing left is food! We rarely ate dairy products overseas but here I am putting yogurt in my smoothies (never did that before). Also the ice cream seems much richer here and the pizza had tons more cheese. I really think this is what it is! My daughter also has a constant runny nose that she had when we lived here before. Overseas she rarely had a runny nose.

I’m sad to say it but we are going to go (mostly) dairy-free. I will no longer buy yogurt or cheese or ice cream. Sniff. We already drink almond milk exclusively so that will stay the same and I think coconut yogurt for smoothies sounds good but there really aren’t good substitutes that I know of for cheese and ice cream. Those are going to be missed! Butter on the other hand will stay. I don’t do margarine or vegan spreads so butter stays and I am sure we will eat pizza or ice cream from time to time but I won’t buy dairy from the market anymore (again except for my beloved butter). In other words they will be reduced drastically. I am hoping this helps with my phlegm issues!

Have you noticed any health benefits when you cut out dairy?

Ethiopian Food

We love Ethiopian food in our house and we were excited to eat this last night. My daughter who doesn’t like spicy food loves mesir wat! (well she is Ethiopian!)IMG_0826It tasted good but I am up this morning with a stomach ache and my fingers feel swollen. I also have a sore throat. What is going on? There wasn’t any gluten in it (injera is made with gluten-free teff flour) and it didn’t have any dairy either (though I did have leftover pizza for lunch!) so who knows? Guess I can’t really blame the Ethiopian food. Maybe I am just coming down with a cold. And the bad news? I am back up to 154. I guess pizza and ice cream will do that! Note to self: don’t spend googabs of money on organic produce if you are going to order pizza! It’s almost 3 weeks into the raw foods cleanse and I can officially say that I am back up to my exact same starting weight of 154 and I feel like crap–but of course that has nothing to do with the cleanse that I am not doing! The one thing that I have learned is that I prefer foods that I make myself and I feel great when I eat raw and vegan. Lessons learned as I move forward.

This morning I made a smoothie with blueberries, strawberries, banana, cucumbers and grapes. It was pretty good. Then we hit the farmer’s market and picked up some organic corn which I was thrilled about. I have been searching high and low for organic corn and haven’t been able to find it anywhere! Corn is one of the most genetically modified crops in the US. Ugh. I did find this app that sounds useful. Haven’t tried it though. We also picked up some cilantro, basil, tomatoes and orange peppers (all organic). I am looking forward to eating our delightful bounty today!