Thursday, January 28, 2016

Road Trip

I don't cheat with wheat EVER.

But if I'm to be honest, I have had a bit of rice, some french fries, potato chips, and a few pieces of candy a few times since the two years I have been eating this way. 

This is what I can say about doing that. 

Whenever I do that, I always can correlate it to a week or so of bad eating, cravings and such following that slip.Then I usually gain a bit, feel depressed, crave more sweets and the cycle continues, and I struggle to break it and get back on track. That doesn't happen when I stay away from sugar. 

When I say bad eating, I am not talking about wheat. Again, I never have any. I am so sure that it is the root of many problems that I don't ever have it. 

But if you are looking to control that surge in appetite that makes you overeat, or the urge for something sweet that makes you overindulge, it is best to stay away from all processed foods including sugary treats and such. 

I've learned eating healthy and losing weight is really not about will power, it's about controlling your cravings and appetite and that only happens when you keep your blood sugar stable. 

The ups and downs in blood sugars are the problem. The downs follow a surge in blood sugar caused by eating sugar, and carbs are just chains of sugar.

But the best advice I can give anyone, including myself, is to realize the big reason you chose to eat this way which is better health. And if you slip consciously or unconsciously, then get right back on track. 

One slip doesn't matter. If you were going on a road trip and made a wrong turn, you wouldn't turn around and go home. You would readjust your plan and head towards your destination.

Happy, Healthy Travels!

Thought for the day:

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

January 2016

I like January.

 I didn't realize I did for many years. That's because I love Christmas and the whole joyfulness of the holiday season. January felt like a let down. A drab, dull, grey month following on the heels of the festive, colorful, merry and bright, month of December.

But January is quiet. It's a reset month. It's a pause and reflect month. It's a make a list, start a new project, out with the old and in with the new month. It's like a nap month after a long hard holiday partying month.

Parties are done, gifts are given, promises and resolutions are made. The whole year lies ahead. What to do with it?

I have taken a break from blogging, but January feels like a good time to put my thoughts and ideas back out there.

I hope you will follow along to see what 2016 has in store.

Thought for the day: Breathe and release anything that does not serve you.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Happy Labor Day!

An appropriate birthday gift from my Mom!

Happy Labor Day Everyone!
The summer has flown by, but there are still many warm and wonderful days left to enjoy. I love August. Maybe because I was born in August, married in August, and while it is still a summer month, we begin to feel that hint of Autumn which is just around he corner. Shorter days, cooler nights, fireflies (or lightening bugs depending on where you live!!) and the warm summer weather, make it  the perfect month in my opinion. Yet we know another great season, Autumn, is just around the corner.
I hope your summer was wonderful, and if you are using the start of fall as a time to get healthy for whatever reason, I hope you find a plan you can live with for the rest of your life. It has to be a lifestyle change, plain and simple. You have to be able to do it forever. You may slip and fall, you may lose your way, but you have to have something that you believe in to fall back on. If you don't you will never change permanently, only temporary. If you fail to plan, then you should plan to fail.
As many of you know I started my journey to health with the original Belly Fat Cure by Jorge Cruise. This taught me to count my sugar, limit carbs, avoid processed foods, artificial sweeteners and junk foods. It's a great place to start and I have many fellow bloggers that lost weight and have kept it off following this plan. My friend Rosalie has a great blog that gives you all the information you need to know as well as great motivation and recipes. Check it out.

If you don't know where to start, and you want to get healthy and also lose weight, the Belly Fat Cure is a great book. You will see and be shocked at the amount of sugar, natural and processed, you are eating in the foods that you thought were healthy for you. You will understand how many carbs you should have in a day and why too much insulin is such a bad thing for our bodies. Even as a nurse, I was shocked at what learned
I have taken it a step further and now I follow a wheat free and grain free way of eating. I bought and read the Wheat Belly and Grain Brain books and my husband and I have made a life change. Now this didn't happen over night. I bought Wheat Belly a year or so ago. I was following a wheat free way of eating about 80% of the time. But as the author Dr. Davis states, 'if you follow it 80% of the time, you will only get 20% of the results.'
So January 1, 2014, my husband and I decided to give Wheat up for good. We have never felt better. In fact just yesterday, he said 'you've saved my life but getting me to follow this way of eating.' Dramatic statement? Yes. But he has had dramatic results. His  chronic acid reflux is gone, his chronic joint pain is gone, his chronic foot tendonitis is gone.  We both have experienced positive health results. My thyroid medication has decreased, my knee pain is greatly diminished, my perimenapausal hot flashes and  mood swings are decreased, and my skin looks so much better. I can really see the difference and others have commented on it as well. And there are many other positive changes, some subtle, but changes for the better any way you look at it.
Many people may be skeptical, but I say, what have you got to lose? Try it for a few weeks. See for yourself. It's really not that hard at all once you get the hang of it. I read many, many posts and testimonies on facebook groups and blogs, and the dramatic positive health changes people are reporting cannot be casually dismissed. If you suffer from any debilitating health problem, (migraines, joint pain, asthma, GERD, cardiac or respiratory issues) I really think you should open your mind to the possibility that you could be helped by following a wheat free way of eating. What if this one simple change could have a huge impact on your health? People are quick to take a pill to correct something, but changing ones diet seems impossible for many. It's really not that hard.
Next time I post, I'll give you some tips to get started. You can also go to Dr. Davis blog, It's easy to get started even if you don't want to buy the book.
Enjoy the last days of summer!
Thought for the day: If you do what you've always'll get what you've always gotten!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Summer days.....drifting away.....

Well here we are in the waning days of summer. I can't believe it's the middle of August already. I hope you found some time to refresh, recharge, and rejuvenate this summer. If not, there are still a few weeks left, so make time for yourself. Grab that book you've been wanting to read and hit the lounge chair by the pool, lake, beach or backyard deck. Pencil it in your schedule and make it a priority. Grab a cold beverage to sip while you are at it.

Water is one of the best beverages for your health. One of the challenges I have is getting enough of it. Did you ever notice that people always say they drink a lot of water. But how much do they really consume in a day? It's probably not enough.

Water is filling, hydrating, and needed for all the metabolic functions to work properly in the body. I'm not going to get too scientific here, and you will always find reports, studies, & opinions that contradict the amounts of water needed daily. Let me just tell you that I follow a lot of Facebook groups and blogs, and a common comment I hear, especially among those trying to lose weight, is that the weight loss is accelerated during the weeks where they really made a conscious effort to consume at least 8 - 10 glasses a day.

To encourage myself to drink water through out the day, I have tried many tricks. My latest one is filling a beautiful dispenser with a whole pitcher of filtered Brita water. I add some fresh cut lemons, mint, or sliced cucumbers. You can make it the way you want. Some frozen or fresh berries will give you a hint of flavor. The goal is to drink it, and it just seems more palatable and fun when you jazz it up.

So grab a cold glass of water and take some time to enjoy these last lazy, hazy days of summer.

They will be gone before you know it!

Thought for the day: Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability. ~Sam Keen

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

What's for breakfast.... Blueberry Almond Flaxseed Pancakes

Many times I get asked what you can eat for breakfast if you are eating wheat and grain free. Just because you don't use white flour doesn't mean you have to give up pancakes. In fact, there are so many great pancake recipes floating around out there which are made with almond flour and various other ingredients. It just might be hard to come up with your favorite one.

I have been making these as my go to pancake. I make up a huge batch, and freeze in packages. I keep a package in the fridge for the week. It's easy to grab one and heat in the microwave. See my tips at the bottom, as well as some great variations. Don't be afraid to experiment and change things up a bit. I don't think you can mess these up!

Blueberry Almond Flaxseed Pancakes

Mix dry ingredients together. Mix wet ingredients together and combine with dry. Mix until blended.

Drop approx 1/2 cup until well oiled griddle. Dip your hand in water to flatten out. Flip after a few minutes.

My Tips:
  • I buy golden flaxseed meal. It's finer and tastes better. 
  • Honeyville almond flour is the best for baking. It's fine texture makes baked goods better. You can find it here. I have also found it at Costco at a low price. It really makes a difference in texture.
  • Trader Joes sells bags of organic frozen blueberries. It's also easy to freeze your own in ziploc bags during the summer, and then you'll have them all winter long.
  • For more even distribution of blueberries, add them to the pancakes on the griddle
  • These pancakes have a heavier texture. Don't make them too big or they will be hard to flip. After flipping, press down on them to help cook evenly.
  • You can add some walnuts, a few tbs of pure pumpkin puree or some sour cream for variations.
  • I don't use Splenda, Nutrasweet or Sweet n Low. They are harmful and full of chemicals. I use products that have sugar alcohols in them. Natures Hollow has great sugar free syrups. I buy from Netrition.Lots of great products and one low  flat rate shipping price.
    These are the products I use.

    Dipping hand in water before pressing down, keeps the pancake from sticking when pressing down.
    Adding the blueberries after you drop the pancakes onto the griddle, allows for even distribution.

    Delicious topped with butter and Sugar free syrup.

    Thought for the day: 

Drama is very important in life: You have to come on with a bang. You never want to go out with a whimper. Everything can have drama if it's done right. Even a pancake. Julia Child

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Dark Chocolate Nut Bark

I wrote this post awhile ago, but some family and friends have been asking for it, so I'm reposting.

Here's what you need:

9 x 13 baking dish - lined with parchment and
                            sprayed with cooking spray
4 bars of dark chocolate - 85% ( I love Green & Black Organics) 

1/2 - 3/4 cup chopped pistachios, walnuts and almonds - any that you like
coarse sea salt such as fleur-de-sel ( I used a lavender sea salt)

  • Melt chocolate slowly in microwave. 
  • It's very important to melt and stir. If you cook too long the chocolate will seize up, and once that happens, it's done. Start with about 1 1/2 minutes and then stir and most of the chunks will melt. Microwave a few seconds more if necessary.

Pour into prepared pan.

Sprinkle the nuts on top. Gentle press into chocolate. Sprinkle the sea salt over top.

Put the pan in the fridge and chill for at least 30 minutes. When chilled, lift sides of parchment and remove chocolate from dish. Break into pieces.

Change your thinking, Change your life.

If you have followed my blog along the way, you know I am an early adopter, have a fear of missing out, and I'm always looking for the perfect path. 

Since January, 2014 my husband and I became grain and wheat free. Sure, I dabbled it in here and there, since I bought Dr. Davis' book Wheat belly quite awhile ago. But with the start of the new year, I made a decision that this was the way of eating for me. Then I found Dr. Perlmutter's book, Grain Brain and that sealed the deal. Getting rid of the genetically modified, addictive wheat in my diet was going to become my new way of life and way of eating.

It's really not hard. I hear over and over, 'what would I eat?',  or 'I could never give up pasta, bagels, bread'. The simplest advice I can give you, is that you can do this if you change the way you think. Change the way you have always thought things to be. Challenge the information you have been fed by the big food companies, pharmaceutical companies, and even our FDA, and read, research and explore for yourself. There are a myriad of reasons why you should do this. Both of these books convinced me that this lifestyle is a change for the better.

Who says you have to have cereal for breakfast or sandwiches for lunch? Where did that even come from? Possibly from the Kellogs or General Mills marketing department? What did your great, great grandparents eat? Probably bacon and eggs, seasonal fruit and healthy butter. Our ancestors weren't eating some conjured up laboratory margarine goop that has to be colored yellow to make it remotely palatable looking. Lunches were often dinner type meals or leftovers from the night before.  Change your thinking. Don't eat foods thought up by food scientists in a lab, genetically changed, sprayed with chemicals or modified to be fast growing, pest and weed resistant. Ask yourself the question, why do I think and believe what I do?

I have lots of inquiries about some of the recipes I make for myself and my husband ( who by the way since giving up wheat is off all acid blockers and has significantly less joint pain.) He's a believer just by the results he has seen in his life. If you give it a try, and really commit to this as a way of eating, not a diet, but a lifestyle change, I think you will see some great changes to your health, and overall well being, physically and mentally.

This blog started out in a very different direction when I first started it. I followed the Belly Fat Cure by Jorge Cruise. It was with that book that I learned to limit carbs, sugar and processed foods. It's a great plan and there's nothing wrong with it. I went one step more and gave up grains and wheat. 

I've had so many questions and inquiries about my recent changes from family and friends, that I thought it was time to put some of the things I am doing, and changes I am making up on this blog. I'll let you know some of the things I love to make, healthy foods and supplements I buy and also where to buy them. I love to share what I learn. 

I back in big batches. Here are some wheat free muffin tops, granola and two loaves of the Walnut Raisin Bread

Here is one of my favorite recipes from the Wheat Belly Cook Book,  Walnut Raisin Bread.

Walnut Raisin Bread
makes 10 slices

1 1/3 cups almond meal/flour
1/3 cup ground golden flaxseeds
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsps ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp sea salt
3/4 cup raisins
1/2 cp chopped walnuts
2 eggs
1 egg white
1/4 cup butter, coconut oil, or extra light olive oil, melted
1/2 cup buttermilk

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Grease an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 loaf pan
  • In large bowl, sift together first six ingredients. I use a whisk.
  • Add the raisins and walnuts and stir to combine.
  • In another bowl, combine eggs, egg whites, butter or oil and buttermilk. Beat lightly to break up egg yolks
  • Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and mix thoroughly, just until moistened.
  • Spoon the batter into loaf pan and bake for 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes our clean and bread is firm, yet springy to touch.

Per slice 169 calories, 5g protein, 11 g carbs, 13 g fat, 3 g fiber, 220 mg sodium

 My Tips: 

1.make sure your loaf pan is the size listed. Your standard loaf pan is too big. Invest in a few smaller ones. Order online or buy at kitchen store. 

2. Make 2 batches. When cool, I cut into 10 slices with serrated knife. I freeze in batches of 5 slices and take out a pack when you need it.

3. This bread is not a sweet bread. If you find you need it sweeter, you can add some Stevia drops to batter. I think the raisins give it just the right amount of sweetness.It is great with butter or cream cheese and I like it cold out of the fridge, but it can be toasted.

4. I have always made it with butter, so can't speak of the results with olive or coconut oil

I'll continue to post some of my favorite recipes in the weeks to come. Let me know what you think.

Thought for the day: "Don't be afraid to change. You may lose something good, but you may gain something better."