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.

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