Archive for the ‘raw food’ Category

Always Some Excuse

So breakfast was juice and lunch was a smoothie. But the weather was cold and I was heating up lunch for my daughter.. and I broke down. I ate some cauliflower with cheddar and butter and some black-eyed peas with carrots that had been prepared using smoked turkey and chicken stock. Did I eat any grains? No. Anything processed? Not really. Anything with refined sugar? No. But I had animal products and beans which I said I wouldn’t have. Was I asleep by ten? Yes. Did I wake up early and do yoga? Yes. I am proud of what I accomplished but annoyed with myself for not sticking to my plan, especially as I look in the mirror and see my checks are still covered with hives or this rash or whatever this is.

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It is winter. We got a ton of snow yesterday. I want warm food. In the movie Joe fasted when it was warm weather. So did the other guy they highlighted, Phil. I’m pretty sure it was warm when Daniel and Jesus  and Gandhi and other religious figures fasted. Who solely drinks cold juices when it’s 20 degrees outside? I’m sure people do it but gosh darn it if it doesn’t make it more difficult. Though, then again, some folks fast without any food or drink and do it when it’s 100 degrees outside. It’s done. It’s not comfortable. It’s not supposed to be easy or fun or comfortable. I think this really illuminates what kind of person I am. I want what I want when I want it. I gave in. I indulged myself. I didn’t persevere. I gave up.

I gave up.

It got too hard.

It wasn’t fair.

I did the yoga, I got some sleep. I avoided grains and sugar… so I justified eating the food. I did part of it.

But I didn’t do exactly what I set out to do.

Why not? Why was I okay with doing just a half-assed job? Or rather (because I was not okay with it) why did I give up? My skin/energy level/health are suffering! Isn’t that enough?

What is my deal?

I have no idea. This is interesting though. Depressing. Enlightening. Maddening. Infuriating! Sad.

On to Day 2. Or rather Day 1 again. Wish me luck.

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October Unprocessed

Okay, I signed up for another challenge to see if I can make it for a sustained period of time with a support network. It’s called October Unprocessed. Check out Andrew Wilder’s blog, Eating Rules, which explains it all (click on his logo), but in a nutshell for the month of October you don’t eat anything that someone with reasonable skill couldn’t replicate in their kitchen. He says you can do this for every meal for the entire month or just dinners or just weekdays–basically whatever works best for you. My plan is to completely eliminate wheat and maybe dairy and sugar. I’m not going to do “unprocessed” per se as I think it’s better for me to eat the frozen veggie burger than a loaf of homemade bread. Plus, to be honest, I have way too much going on right now to cook every meal from scratch. Better for me to just eliminate something(s). I was going to start after the hamburger buns and bread and pasta were eaten, but you know what? That is just an excuse to delay it even further. No! I am starting tomorrow. Goal is to eat NO WHEAT for October. I’m pretty convinced it is at the root of my problems (well, that and sugar) but it is one I am pretty confident I can stick to (so much easier than raw!) and I can eliminate something else once I am able to conquer this hurdle. I hope to see the rash under my chin and on my left thigh go away, eliminate post-meal bloating and regain some energy.

Won’t  you join me in the challenge? It’s not too late to sign up!

October Unprocessed 2013

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!

Aha Moment

It can be confusing, all you read about food choices. There is conflicting information everywhere. Vegetarianism is best. No, vegan. No, raw vegan. No, that will make you sick you should eat Paleo. Go gluten-free. Go sugar-free. Dairy-free. Low fat is best. High fat, low carb. Stay away from processed foods. Stay away from GMOs. Eat strictly organic. Eat a clean diet. It’s hard to know what is best and it’s enough to make your head spin!!!  For years I went back and forth not knowing what was best until I finally realized that they are all (for the most part) right because what makes one person feel great does not necessarily make someone else feel great. Everybody’s body is different. Some people thrive on a vegan diet. Some feel fantastic on Paleo. And they can both be right. It’s important to listen to your own body.

What I did find though in all my research is one thing that should be avoided across the board: sugar. No one says to continue eating sugar. No one. And no one says to eat a diet of highly refined, processed foods. No one. And I know that I personally feel better when I avoid them. So those will be my two non-negotiables, along with hot dogs, corn and soy. Hot dogs, though yummy, are just downright disgusting when you think about it and corn and soy are two of the most genetically modified products in the US (along with sugar beets whatever those are) so I won’t consume them at all unless they’re organic.

So. clean eating for me will be the following:

1. No corn, soy or hotdogs ever

2. Limit consumption of red meat, sugar and processed foods (will make exceptions on birthdays, Christmas, etc.)

3. Eat as many one ingredient foods as possible, organic for the dirty dozen (see graphic below from environmental working group)

4. Try to make each meal at least 50% raw

6. Drink lots of filtered water

That’s it! I think this is totally doable and what I should be eating. It makes sense for me. I am excited about it actually and I think I will be an excellent role model for my daughter if I eat this way.

Starting Over

I woke up today feeling terrible! I have terrible back pain reminiscent of how it used to feel often in the past year. I used to blame the mattress but now I’m not so sure. I didn’t have any back pain when I was eating raw. None and now it’s back. It could be partly because I feel asleep in a sugar-induced coma on the floor last night after writing my blog post and transferred to my bed in the middle of the night sometime but it could also be due to the food. But let’s be real: Falling asleep in a massive sugar-induced heap on the floor isn’t a good look!

So let’s recap. Last night for dinner I had bread with olive oil and spices and I ate one of my friend’s grilled shrimp. Then I ate my salad which was Romaine, cherry tomatoes, croutons, cucumber and dressing. For dinner I ordered grilled salmon with a Creole mustard sauce and broccoli. The broccoli was boiled to death and was mushy and had no flavor. What a travesty to ruin a delightfully, vibrant vegetable like that! I couldn’t even force my daughter to eat that it was so bad. I had 1.5 glasses of Sauvignon Blanc with it and then a double scoop of ice-cream: cookies and cream and chocolate chip.

Could it have been any worse?! Dairy. Gluten. Alcohol. Sugar!!! Who knows what the culprit was but I am paying the price. I feel bloated and gross this morning and it’s been ten hours. Back pain, bloating, grogginess, achy joints, feeling tired–not well rested at all. Sure I enjoyed just eating whatever I wanted in the moment but this feeling is so not worth it. Really. I’m going to hit the Farmer’s Market today and load up on healing, delicious raw foods and I am going to swing by Bed, Bath and Beyond and get a citrus juicer.

And here’s one more thing that makes me so mad I ate like that last night: I had planned on taking my daughter on a hike this morning. It isn’t hot or raining and we  have the time. It’s a perfect Saturday to do this but I have no energy! I feel sick! I just want to lie here and do nothing. This is no way to live! What kind of role model am I to my daughter if I eat junk and lie like a slug on the floor on a Saturday morning? I want to be the active family who eats fresh foods and bounces out the door on the weekends to do active things. If that is to happen it is up to me.

Please send some good vibes out there to the Universe for me to get back in focus. I really really do want this.

Thai Food is Not Allowed on a Water Fast

Just clarifying that for you in case you were unaware. :(. Ok, so yeah. Today on the 28 day cleanse was supposed to be a water fast and today was the day I totally broke my raw foods stint and ate cooked food.

I woke up exhausted and with a sore throat. I don’t think it was any kind of detoxing symptoms but rather that it was freezing in my apartment. Then again I was also super emotional yesterday too. I was feeling overwhelmed by the things in my life and felt like crying all day. I don’t know what that was about but I digress. So anyways it was really cold, like 50 degrees last night…in July! I am not kidding. I was SOOO cold! So I woke up feeling like crap and I knew only water today wasn’t going to cut it.

I started the day with a smoothie made with blueberries, kale, one tiny sugar plum, a peach, banana and some almond milk. It was really good but a few hrs later I was hungry for some food so I made myself a sandwich with wheat bread and sunflower nut butter and banana and had a glass of almond milk. I gotta be honest: it was just okay. I snacked on the goji berry cacao squares I have stashed in my freezer and had some more blueberries then I went out for dinner later.

Dinner was at a Thai restaurant. My friend got delayed on the Metro and I really wanted a glass of wine while I waited but instead I ordered the seaweed salad. When he arrived we shared some salmon avocado sushi which was delicious. For dinner I ordered a dish with eggplant, chicken and basil and ate it with rice. I also had a bite of his lamb. My daughter, on the other hand, was truly horrified that he was eating lamb. I asked to sample it and he offered some to her. She had a sad look on her face and said, “No, I will never eat lamb! I like lambs, I don’t eat lambs! They are so cute!!” Of course I immediately had a picture of a sweet, fluffy lamb on a green pasture and could barely swallow my bite. She’s right, we shouldn’t be eating lambs, they are sweet. I wouldn’t be surprised if she became a vegetarian at some point in her young life.

Anyways, I ate my food but it was just okay. It was weird to have my food at that high (heat) temperature. That was a sensation I wasn’t used to and chewing on the chicken wasn’t really as good as I was expecting. The sauce also was very salty to me. I used to really like that restaurant but maybe because I’ve been eating so clean can don’t enjoy the oils and sauces that might have been bottled or poorer quality. I found myself not able to finish my food which is highly unusual when it comes to me and Thai food.

After dinner my daughter wanted some ice cream and she decided on mint. She was raving about it and both she and the saleslady were encouraging me to sample it but I couldn’t. I had ZERO taste for that sugary treat. Really, really odd. I LOVE ice cream but I just haven’t had any interest since starting this raw foods cleanse in eating sweets. My cravings have essentially disappeared. I love this side benefit.

After dinner I felt bloated and gassy and fell right to sleep exhausted. I am typing this, however, at 3:40am. I woke up about an hour ago very hot (I slept in a sweatshirt) and got up to pee and decided to look at videos on raw food on YouTube and type this post instead. You know what’s crazy though?! I was waking up in the middle of the night for weeks and as soon as I started eating raw I was sleeping through the night. One day of cooked food and I’m back to waking up. Interesting.

I need to force myself to get back to sleep now because, well, sleep is necessary and good for you but also because I’m touring a private school tomorrow for my daughter and I’m sure they will be sizing me up as well. After this experience I think it will be easy to get back on track tomorrow.