Saturday, February 23, 2013

Raw Food Plant Based Diet

Hi There Friends!

I pray this finds you all well.  Today I thought I would jot down a little bit about what we've been doing lately.

Last February my husband changed his diet to a plant based diet after hearing about his dad's 8th stent in order to clear the plaque from his arteries.   Cardiac related issues seem to be genetic in his fathers family where his grandfather died before his 40th birthday.  A series of medical issues related to high blood pressure and high cholesterol which put my husband in the hospital several times finally drew him to the understanding that if he didn't change his eating habits, he would not be here for his family.  We both will be turning forty years old in two years.

Since that time, my husband has lost 50lbs and has stuck to the lifestyle and lower or getting completely rid of his meds related to cardiac meds.

He still has some tweaking to do. Less carbs and more smaller meals throughout the day since now his metabolism is REALLY working.  We're also researching ways for him to gain the muscle back that he lost.  Since he went full force into plant based eating, he lost so much weight that he also lost some muscle. It's coming back slowly however it IS something we have to watch constantly as we start moving as a family into a healthier lifestyle.

I too have been working on a healthier lifestyle.  It hasn't come as easy as my husbands cold turkey method however.  Since I am on an insulin pump, my body is getting excess insulin and only uses some of the insulin that is given to the body. I am known as SEVERELY insulin resistant.  Which brings me to another frustrating issue.  Any excess insulin NOT used by my body gets stored as FAT.  Ugh! Dreaded fat.

I've been learning what works for my body and what really doesn't. Let's face it. A type II insulin resistant diabetic will react MUCH faster to fruits with higher natural sugar content than those higher in fiber and less sugar. Same thing with vegetable carbs.  Whole grain carbs...whether it be cereal, whole grain pastas, breads, etc....they are lethal.  I'm learning that these just raise my sugars and my body just doesn't digest them very well.  Taken that my body doesn't do well with glutenous grains, think about my addiction to cakes, cookies, pies and chocolate!

So here's where I am today.  I try to stay away from most soy products.  I'll have them once in awhile but given that I have a thyroid condition and hormonal imbalance, soy products aren't something my body needs right now.  When I DO, I try to make sure it's fermented and REALLY organic.  Most (even organic) soy products have been sprayed with MAJOR pesticides, etc.  Soy actually has one of the highest contents of toxic chemicals in it and the least likely to be regulated because much of it is imported.  You REALLY need to know the source of your soy products before ingesting them.

Meat.  I've stopped eating red meat and fish.  On occasion I'll eat chicken but give the fact that it's in the freezer and isn't really a staple anymore I think it's just for "emergencies".

What I struggle with is cheese, milk and eggs. I don't have eggs an awful lot, but I DO like them in the morning. CHEESE. I come from an Italian family on one need I say more??  Milk.  No excuse!  Honestly I started drinking almond milk and liked it. We transitioned our daughter BACK to regular milk for specific reasons and I find myself drinking it while my husband continues to drink the almond milk.  It's something that should and WILL get back into my diet.

Something different from my husband.....I've been REALLY looking at and somewhat eating RAW plant based diet.  I like the foods, I like the taste now and I'm just working into getting everything balanced.  Believe it or not there IS protein in a plant based diet.  So many people ask where we would get our protein. Protein comes from MANY greens you eat. Spinach, Kale, Broccoli.  Can come from Quinoa and lentils, Soy products or fermented Tempeh, and beans such as black beans.  You can even pair beans and rice to make one full protein.

There are plenty of ways to incorporate a healthy lifestyle using no animal protein.  In fact, we're the only creatures on this earth that will feed our babies milk outside mothers breast milk. There is no real need for animal protein. ESPECIALLY since we are a culture that is mostly sedentary compared to those in the past who had to live in cooler climates, work hard and also fight hard to gather their foods.

One of my FAVORITE youtube channels is OKRAW with John Kholer (hope I spelled his last name correctly)  His video's have helped me understand the raw food diet and how to get all the nutrients while having good taste. He teaches where to find quality organic foods at minimal cost, how to garden to get all your nutrients from your OWN products without relying on the grocery stores and has great insight.  I like his site.  My husband does too now.  Check him out if your interested:

Enjoy this video until I come back for another installment of what we've been up to.  In the meantime, I pray you find joy and peace in your day as you walk with God.

P.S., please scroll down to the very bottom of the page to mute the music so you can hear the video.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Engine 2 Hummus Recipe.

Healthy Homemade Hummus

2 cans chick peas, rinsed and drained
3 cloves garlic
Juice of 1 lemon
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons Bragg Liquid Aminos
1/4 cup water or vegetable broth

I mash the beans together in a bowl, quickly chop up the garlic cloves and throw them in, add the ground cumin and stir.  Throw it in the blender and blend all ingredients into a thick paste adding the lemon juice, liquid aminos and broth to the mixture so it won't clog. 

Customize by adding one or more of the following:
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
1 fresh jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1 roasted and chopped red bell pepper
1 cup dark or Kalamata olives
1 bunch fresh mint
1 cup fresh spinach
1 cup cooked eggplant

NOTE: This is the most basic of the spreads. You can find a variation of this recipe in almost any grocery store, but 95 percent of them are made with either olive oil or tahini (sesame paste), which pushes up the fat content. Your best bet is to take three minutes and make a batch on Sunday that will last you for the week.

You can find the source at Engine 2. A Vegan site we frequent quite often. I HAD to share this hummus recipe because it's FAT FREE.  Cut the grocery store brand and make it yourself. It's fresh and Yummy!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentines Day!

I hope this day finds you well my friends.  We spent the past two weeks celebrating love.  Our anniversary was last week so we spent the weekend celebrating by getting massages, acupuncture and wading in a lovely waterfall hot tub. It was AMAZING. We then moved on to Indian Curry, a trip to the book store then onward to get our daughter.  The next day we went to the mall, which says a lot about LOVE since my husband absolutely HATES mall shopping.  We ended it with Mexican food.

While Today he had to work, we still spent much of the week celebrating with each other.  We've been praying together, the other day we shared a day filled with errands but VERY calming. It was nice to spend the day with baby bear and my husband.

He left for work but not without sacrificing the day with running on an errand with us leading to the french patisserie for chocolate, the store for baby food and home where he managed to send me an e-card.

I must say that I am married to a man who was hand-picked by God to love me.  If it weren't for God I'd probably be single. I'm high maintenance. Not in the way most men would assume. I can live without makeup, high end clothes and such.  He has lived with my medical issues for many years now. Most of which aren't always fun to be around. I get moody, my body doesn't always work the way it should and when most men would be out the door my husband stood his ground and kept to the Covenant with which we took before God.  

He is not perfect, but for ME he comes close. Remembering why I married him is quite easy.  He's Gods Fence Mender. Loving, Kind and Gentle with LOADS of patience. He loves me for who I am and has made me want to be a better person.  I love that He loves the Lord. It blesses my heart and I've come to understand the importance of what a man who loves the Lord provides to his home and family.

Over the years I've understood that love isn't always a fairytale. There are bad times, sometimes downright draughts! It's easy for people to give up or say they just "fell out of love". In order to fall out of love you have to give up on it. You have to stop putting LOVE into your marriage. You have to stop making your marriage of importance and you have to have made God somewhere outside the 1st priority to your household.

When God becomes the sole priority in which you base the very foundation of your house and home is THEN that you find prosperity in your marriage and home life.  God, Husband, children, etc.  This is NOT to say that my life is perfect. In fact, I have much to learn.  We must trust that marriage and love goes beyond what we sometimes FEEL because there are times we must sacrifice or compromise. 

As I speak, my biggest stronghold is patience.  Nothing good comes from losing it.  So God is teaching me in all directions just how important patience is and how it affects so much of our lives. In learning to be patient, we'll find self control. Through both my family and I reap the benefit from Gods teachings.

I leave you with two scriptures that bless my heart today:

1 Corinthians 13:4-8
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
 Love never fails. 

Romans 5:1-4

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peacewith God through our Lord Jesus Christ,  through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.  Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.  And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.