Sunday, July 31, 2011

Spent the morning prepping veggies

I picked up another big shipment of vegetables from the CSA farm yesterday. More chard, beets (and their tops), summer squash, tomatoes, oak leaf lettuces (two big heads!), jalapenos, corn, onions, basil...OMG! There's even more stuff! I've worked all morning to get it all washed and put away.

We've been eating really well at our house since I joined the CSA. Plenty of veggies, but they were starting to come in a little faster than my boys and I were able to eat. So last week I started blanching and freezing the vegetables that can survive those conditions. Namely the greens and the corn. It's simple to do, and the instructions for it can be found on the Pick-Your-Own website. (Pick-Your-Own vegetables...not your nose.)

(Sorry, I've been hanging out with my 13-year-old.)

So now I have close to a dozen bags of greens (collards and radish from last week, chard and beet from this week), and four family servings of corn on the cob set aside for the winter. How cool is that! In the fridge, there's three big bags of washed lettuces, cucumbers and leeks, ready for salads. On the counter I've got tomatoes in various stages of ripening. I'm having a huge craving for a BLT salad at lunch.

I have to say, with all these veggies, my intestines are finally happy. I've been reading up on pre- and pro-biotics, how eating those can be more important than eating a lot of fiber. The pro-biotics are the foods responsible for introducing the right bacteria in the intestines to support healthy digestion, and the pre-biotics are important for feeding that bacteria. Keeping that bacteria healthy and thriving is what helps food to digest and pass through, plus it helps maintain our immune system which prevents us from getting sick or speeds our recovery when we do get sick.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Very low calorie snacking

I tried avoiding the in-between snacks. There are no snack foods in my house. Just ask my kids. I don't really do the snack thing. But, I have no issue with putting together an entire meal when I'm feeling noshy. I can really eat a lot if left unsupervised and emotionally compromised, which is practically all the time during menopause. (Really, who wants to be around a menopausal woman? Are there examples of sexy menopausal women? No! Do cougars on TV struggle between taking their evening primrose or taking their pool boy? NO!)

(Yes, I'm having abandonment issues at the moment...wait it out, it'll change to something else soon.)

So, a lot of times, I want something to snack on. It only recently occurred to me to find something really low calorie to keep nearby. Usually I have the Trader Joe's Just a Handful of Almonds in the individual packets. And I will eat a whole avocado. No, not part of one. The whole one. And I've always got hard-cooked eggs or Portuguese sardines packed in olive oil at the ready. But none of these snacks are conducive to the calorie cutting measures I'm supposed to be taking.

Saturday I got my shipment of vegetables from my local CSA, Fresh Edibles Farm. There were three big beautiful heads of butter leaf lettuce in the crate. I washed them up, separated the leaves, spun them in my OXO salad spinner and bagged them for the refrigerator. And forgot about them. On Monday, whilst checking the refrigerator to see if anything new and tasty had magically appeared, the bags of lettuces caught my eye. I reached in and grabbed a leaf and ate it. Cold, crisp and naked butter leaf lettuce. So freakin' tasty! And more interesting than celery.

I'm going to have to start experimenting with fillers, because these little things are perfect for dips or as a mini lettuce wrap. I'm making some roasted eggplant dip tomorrow to dip them into, about 30 calories per tablespoon for my recipe. I'll take pictures and post it on my Paleo Eats page over the weekend.

My son made some taco wraps yesterday, with just a little seasoned ground turkey, olives, cheese and salsa. Must be careful not to let the calories creep back up. Two cups of lettuces are worth just 15 calories. Munching on those is satisfying. But just like anything else, this can get out of control!

Other very low calorie snack ideas (these are not ground breaking, I just hadn't considered them before). I'm shooting for items under 40 calories, because if I just eat a little bit, then I'm still burning stored fat and can go for a longer time without eating a big meal.

Cucumber slices
Blanched greens (dandelion, amaranth, chard, collards, kale) with garlic and fish sauce
Miso soup (I just found some that's soy-free and I can't wait to try it!)
Chicken broth with lemon (good cold too)
Chopped fresh tomato with salt

I'll add to the list as I think of things, maybe post them to Paleo Eats. I always accept suggestions to post. But I have to stick to minimally processed and lower carb foods.

(By the way, after a roller coaster ride back over 300 lbs, I'm happy to share I'm back down to 297 lbs, as of today. For now. Stupid menopause!)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Off-track with the supplements - bad

Okay, so while I was fully on all my supplements, I guess I wasn't just peeing expensive water.

I laid off the vitamins and supplements since I went on vacation, just to see what would happen to me. It's been over a month since I took anything and I feel like crap! I don't remember feeling like this before I started taking them all. It was a slow build of supplements and now I don't really remember which one is for what. (There must be a supplement for that.) So I'm going to write it all down here and then I can refer back to it.

  • PB 8, a pro-biotic acidophilus by Nutrition Now. 2 capsules every morning, on an empty stomach, to support digestive health. 
  • Bayer Low Dose Aspirin. I take two to prevent clots. This is the only medication I take and it was prescribed by my doctor because I have type 2 diabetes and this is supposed to help with heart health.
  • Alive! Once Daily Women's 50+ Ultra Potency Multi-vitamin by Nature's Way. One tablet (giant horse pills!) 100%+ RDA on everything but calcium and magnesium.
  • Pro╬▓eta by PharmaTerra. 2 capsules in the morning, 1 in the evening. To support and rejuvenate the pancreas.
  • Porcine Thyroid by Nutri-Meds. 2 capsules in the morning, 2 in the afternoon. To support thyroid.
  • Adrenal by Nutri-Meds. 1 tablet in the morning. To support adrenal.
  • Potassium Citrate by NOW. 1 capsule 3 times a day. To support electrolyte balance and helps with blood pressure. (I also eat foods rich in potassium like kale, chard, bananas, mushrooms, turnip greens.)
  • Oreganol Oil of Wild Oregano. 1 gel cap. As an antiviral and antibacterial, plus added anti-inflammatory. (I also use Greek oregano in my salads every day.)
  • Cranberry 2000 mg by Nature's Bounty. 2 caplets, three times a day. For urinary tract health.
  • Dandelion Root by Nature's Way. 3 capsules as a diuretic. Helps blood pressure.
  • Liver Blend SP-13 by Solaray. 1 capsule, for liver support
  • Kelp Caps by NOW. 1 capsule, for thyroid support. Provides iodine.
  • Pomegranate Extract by Source Naturals. 2 tablets twice a day. Antioxidant plus stimulates skin's collagen production.
  • GTF Chromium by Nature's Way. 1 capsule. Helps balance blood sugar.
  • Cinnamon Bark by NOW. 2 capsules, twice a day. Anti-fungal/viral/parasitic/inflammatory, plus helps regulate blood sugar, especially in conjunction with chromium, and a good source of manganese.
  • Silent Night with Valerian by Nature's Way. 4 capsules an hour before bedtime. (By the way, these smell terrible!) Helps me keep my circadian rhythm in the groove.
  • Vitamin D-3 by NOW. 1 softgel per week, because I don't spend a lot of time in the sun.
I started taking my supplements again yesterday. I still feel pretty yucky, but today I'm feeling just a little more energized than usual. I gained 10 lbs in the last two days (funny how I'm burying that info so far down in this post), but all my size 24 clothes still fit me. My hands and other joints are swollen and hurt a lot, so there's a lot of inflammation going on. Very likely some serious water retention. Because I did NOT even eat half of the 35,000 calories in the last few days that would have been required to gain this much so quickly.

What I did differently this last week was to increase fruit. I also caved to some carbs that I don't usually have. So I know this water weight is from the carbs needing to hang on to some water. Not going to be disheartened. Just keep moving, back to eating on plan, keep drinking water, keeping the sodium low. I think the struggle with water will continue until I'm done with menopause. My period is now coming every two weeks, but it's not as heavy as it was earlier in the year.

What do I do with all my unused feminine products? There must be someplace I can donate them.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

I'm having one of those weeks...

The food plan, not feelin' it.

The fitness plan, not feelin' it either.

Hoping going to Pilates will get me out of my funk. I don't have anything mind-blowing to share, nothing new to report really. I weighed in at 297 a couple days ago, but it's not impressing me much. I think this is the summer doldrums. I get reverse S.A.D., and I'm much crabbier in the summer than I am in the winter. (And my oldest says, "Mom, please point out to me how you're more crabby now than during the winter, because I don't see the difference.")

Actually, I want to nap. My sleep cycle is way off. So I'm turning off my computer and I'll have a lie down for an hour and then I'll go to Pilates. Since I'm already dressed for it. And I wrote it down in a public place and am sending it out to the world and people will hunt me down and drag my ass to class if I miss another one.

In the meantime, a little thought-provoking reading for you...

PS) Sheri, Rhyan wants to come over to swim tomorrow afternoon. Is that okay?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

299 and holding

I had a self-indulgent holiday weekend, so I knew better than to step on the scale on Tuesday morning. I spent a couple days getting back on track with lower calories, upped water intake, sleep patterns. I don't do well during the summer. I have that S.A.D. that happens when there's too much sunlight, heat and humidity. I need an air conditioner for my bedroom, because the house's a/c doesn't make it quite all the way to the back of the house. I tried to get up early to exercise when it's cooler. I'm going to have to shoot for something like 5 a.m. That still doesn't add up to enough sleep!

However, despite all of that, I am still clinging to 299 lbs. And my size 24 pants.

I've not been back to Pilates since I left for my vacation. When I return, I am going to be so sore! I'm hoping by morning. I've been busy with my mother's medical dramas this week. She has a way of killing my motivation! But this blog is about me! The other blog is about her!

For the weekend, I intend to get back into Pilates, weight training and cardio with some fun DVDs that I have. Not going to go nuts and kill myself, but I don't want to be overly sore after I go back and risk losing out on the benefits because my muscles are cranky. And I think this is going to be a very low carb weekend. Last weekend was a higher than normal carb/calorie weekend. It's only fair to balance this out.

I think I may be adding some tabs at the top of my blog soon. Recipes, book and dvd reviews, stuff like that. What do you think?