My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Saturday, January 9, 2010

the good, the bad and the ugly

I started the last blog post with my turkey/veggie meatloaf. I'm going to start there again. I think it's Austin's new favorite food. He cannot get enough of it. The fact that I can take a pound of turkey and make 3 meals out of it for us makes me happy. The fact that I can stick a dozen veggies in it and a teenager loves it makes me happy. The way it tastes makes him happy. I even sliced it and wrapped each slice individually for easy reheating. He loved the ease of it. I'm going to stick some oats in the next loaf and see how that works...

If I can make it out of Frozen Tundra Acres today, I'll be picking up more ground turkey and possibly ground chicken. This, apparently, is a good thing.

He also loves smoothies. You can cram a whole lot of good stuff in a smoothie. We use fat free yogurt and skim milk and whatever frozen fruit we have on hand. Dairy, protein, fruit... feels like drinking a milkshake... yep, it's a good thing.

I'm the Queen of Roasted Veggies. Take any vegetable... drizzle in olive oil... stick it on a cookie sheet and roast. Caramelization is a beautiful thing... an incredible layer of flavor. The parsnips I made yesterday were incredible! Just sliced, a little fresh ginger, a drizzle of honey and a drizzle of olive oil... cooked in the oven along with the turkey meatloaf and YUM! We also love roasted asparagus, roasted chickpeas, roasted broccoli, roasted beets... really good stuff.

Knowledge is power. I spent last night (re)researching vitamins and why we need them - what role they play in the body. It's good stuff! Did you know that lack of vitamin B6 can cause depression and insomnia? Hmmm... did you know that more vitamin B12 can give you more energy? Did you know that certain vitamins are necessary to be able to absorb other important things like protein for fuel and carbohydrates for blood sugar regulation? Did you know that a diet rich in vitamin A helps with vision? Vitamin D helps with dental health?

Basically you need to know to eat a rainbow of fruits and veggies... but when you understand WHY you need different things... it helps. If you're not eating what you need to be able to metabolize carbohydrates, you're going to have wild dips in energy (um... 2pm slump, anyone?)

There is an endless amount of knowledge on this... and honestly, I was really interested in food that heals from the start of my last weight loss journey... so much, in fact, that I wanted to go back to school to get a degree in nutrition and... well, HE wouldn't let me even think about spending time/money getting a degree that wasn't going to earn me major bucks. Forget job satisfaction, forget passion for something that really interests you... it was all about the money. As that dream died, so did my interest in understanding how all of this fits together. It's nice to be spending time re-learning this stuff. When the person you love the most in the world doesn't respect your dreams, you stop having them. You stop caring about yourself.

The ugly of this post is that I allowed someone to take my dreams from me. The good is that I still have the power within myself to get them back.

I'm going to increase my water consumption today to help cleanse some of the toxins from my body... I can tell that it's already getting rid of some of it - that's both good and ugly! - and since I'm probably not leaving the house today, it's a good day to push the fluids. Also - this dry heat has my skin dried out. I need to mega-hydrate.

I have now been three nights in a row without ambien. That's the longest span without it in 15 months! Stasha prays for me every night that I'll be able to sleep... maybe that's what I needed all along, some sweet saint praying for me to sleep... I can tell you this, I'm sleeping better NOW than I did with the ambien and I'm waking up feeling rested and clear headed. This is VERY GOOD! After a month of healthy eating, I'm going to have my blood pressure checked and if it's good, then I'll start lowering my blood pressure meds. The blood pressure medicine I'm on also does double duty as migraine prevention and I can really tell when I miss a dose because the migraines set in. BUT... if I'm eating in a way that lowers blood pressure, that will also lower the risk of migraines. It all works together.

After that is successful, I'll work on getting off anti-depressants. The research I did last night reminded me how closely nutrition, exercise and depression are linked. Depression is also a huge side effect of ambien. I think - now that I'm in a happier and more empowered place - that once I put the "happy" blocks under me as a firm foundation, I'll need less (or none, I hope) pharmaceutical assistance. As a suicide survivor, I take depression INCREDIBLY seriously and definitely would never go off anti-depressants without careful preparation and medical supervision so please don't take this as encouragement to do so! It may very well be that I will still need them and if I do, there's no shame in that. I'm just going to explore as many natural anti-depressant remedies as possible.

The ice on the road in front of my house has evaporated (it certainly hasn't thawed!) but I would still prefer NOT to drive around unless absolutely necessary. There are just too many variables around here with shady, cooler spots that might very well still be icy. And it's too dang cold. The wind chill this morning was 3. I know some of you think, "that's a heat wave"... but remember, you guys have cold weather gear... Usually I don't even need to wear a jacket in the winter. That's the bad.

The good is that I get to learn how well we do eating healthy from the bounty of the pantry. Usually grilled cheese on white bread is my "end of the groceries" meal. We still have black beans and brown rice.... we have canned tomatoes so I'm going to try my hand at homemade salsa... and Austin wanted oatmeal last night so I think I'm going to make us a nice warm bowl of oatmeal for dinner. Why not?

I read yesterday that to lose weight you should eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper. The idea is to fuel up first thing in the morning... when you have the longest amount of time to burn... eat lighter at night... I think that is a very easy lifestyle change to make, especially on weekends. For breakfast today I had collard greens and the turkey veggie meatloaf with a scoop of fat free greek yogurt.

I also have been concentrating on chewing my food twice as long as usual... eating slower, taking smaller bites, savoring each bite for longer, making digestion easier... it's a way to make the most of what I'm eating. Good.

My goal of 15 minutes a day of "unusual activity" has worked well. Good! This week I'm upping it to twenty minutes. One day all I did was move my stack of "waiting to be folded laundry" from one side of my room to the other... but it was unusual. So there you go! I just want to get moving. And now... I'm going to get moving by getting off of here and cleaning up from breakfast.

Hope you have a great day! Stay warm!


moshell's lilbit of space said...

You should check into going back to school :)

My dinner is almost done and it looks really yummy...probably not the "best" thing I made all could have been McDonalds lol.

Remo said...

Lots of learning on the fly, eh? It's good to see you excited about this stuff. My pantry is stuffed full of minerals and vitamin supplements. Don't forget to include a protein in the morning for breakfast - it is key to regulating your insulin levels throughout the day. If you get a chance, I recommend you check out the Paleo Diet for a look at how we are built to eat.

GReality said...

Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a princess and dinner like a pauper?? I like that and it makes sense. I'm tempted to try the meat loaf w/extra veggies.

Missie said...

Enjoy your Sunday. Hope you're all starting to warm up.