Day 4 – Lots of Energy

Today went pretty well.  After a few days of getting my feet wet with eating vegan, I’m feeling a little more confident on what I should eat and on the philosophy of Eat to Live.  Some of the concepts I’m applying to each day:  eat one cup of beans a day (I’ve been eating 1/2 cup on a salad at lunch and 1/2 cup on a salad for dinner), eat a tablespoon of flax meal each day, eat a large salad with at least lunch and dinner (breakfast, too, if you can stomach it first thing in the morning), and have a healthy, vegan dessert each day.  So far, it’s working pretty well.  I’ve been eating and feeling satisfied.  Today, the caffeine withdrawal headache finally went away and so did the body aches and I’m feeling really energetic.  I’ve been sleeping really well.  Internally, I feel healthy.  I’ve lost 7 pounds this week.  This is definitely the most weight I’ve lost in a single week.  I’m sure it will slow down soon, but I really can’t believe how easy it’s been.  I think in general, it would take me about 7 weeks to lose 7 pounds.  I haven’t been going to bed hungry or waking up starving.  I don’t feel like eating a horse by meal time.  My body seems to be functioning like it should.  I know everyone has their views on how much protein you should get, and all of those ‘build muscle mass’ type workout videos tend to really hype the high protein type of diets.  But, this seems to really be working for me.  Seriously, I want to be healthy;  I’m not looking to flex my muscles to whoever would look at them.  That’s not my goal.  I don’t think it’s necessarily pleasing to God to have that sort of pride in my body.  I was like that at one time in my life and I believe that God brought me down a few pegs with health problems, just to teach me what really matters and to teach me to lean on Him instead of my own strength.  But, that’s just my own life.  So, here’s the run down for the day:

Breakfast:  whole oats (oatmeal) w/ black berries, banana, almond milk

Snack:  apple w/ almond butterSalad

Lunch:  leftover Golden Australian Cauliflower soup, salad topped with kidney beans, a bit of non-dairy cheese, chia seeds, and dijon date dressing (this was an awesome salad – I’d eat this all the time)

Snack:  banana, pumpkin seeds

Dinner:  Here’s my Fuhrman friendly recipe for today.  I think I’ll call it  Tempeh Cacciatore:

8 oz. Tempeh, chopped (can use tofu or just skip it if you don’t like it)

2 cups quartered mushrooms

14 oz. can chopped tomatoes

2 cups skinned and chopped eggplant

1 cup chopped red bell pepper

2 large cloves garlic, mincedItalian Tempeh

1 Tablespoon non salt seasoning

1 cup water

1 cup chopped kale

1 medium spaghetti squash, steamed and pulled apart with a fork to make spaghetti like strands

It’s so simple:  To a medium sized saucepan, add the tempeh, mushrooms, tomatoes eggplant, pepper, garlic, seasoning, and water.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium high and cook for 10 minutes, until the eggplant is slightly opaque.  Add the kale and cook for 5 more minutes.  Serve on top of spaghetti squash.  Serves 4.

I enjoyed this a lot.  I was looking for something Italian-ish and this did the trick.  I added a sprinkle of dairy free ‘parmesan’ cheese that I made with almond flour and nutritional yeast flakes (you can find the recipe on my other blog, searchingforglutenfree.wordpress.com).

Dessert tonight was the Yummy banana oat bars (oh, no, I only have one left:  time to make more).  I never was a dessert every night type of person, but I’m starting to like it.  It kind of takes the edge off of any hunger I may be feeling and I think it actually has been making me sleep better.  I’ve been sleeping like a log this week.  I think maybe have something light to last you through the night may make you sleep better, but I’m not positive about that.

Oh, yeah, exercise today was 20 minutes on the exercise bike and 20 minutes of the glider and then yoga.

Until tomorrow….

Day 3 – Going Better

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’m feeling much better today.  Okay, the good news of the day is that I lost 5 pounds – seriously?  Usually it takes me about 5-6 weeks to lose 5 pounds.  Really, it does.  I know, it’s quick water weight, but still, I wasn’t able to lose even quick water weight no matter what I did in the past.  So, the achey, headachey, sick feeling has passed.  I woke with a headache this morning, but it went away throughout the day and now I feel pretty energetic.  The thing I found today was that I’m not able to eat all that much when you eat like this and it stays with you longer.  Here’s the run-down for the day (sorry – no pictures:  I had all left overs today):

Breakfast:  GF Whole Oats cereal w/ almond milk, apple

Snack: pumpkin seeds (yummy)

Lunch:  Leftover Golden Australian Cauliflower soup, salad w/ black beans, ground flax seed, and dijon date dressing on top

Snack:  Grapes, almond butter

Dinner:  Leftover Asian Vegetable Stir Fry, salad w/ kidney beans and Fuhrman Caesar dressing on top

 

I only ate about 1/3 of the stir fry for dinner.  I was just stuffed.  I still have dessert tonight:  Yummy Banana-Oat Bars.  Today I felt really satisfied.  I think at first I was a little worried that I would be way too low on calories, but I’m going by what my body is telling me and I feel satisfied and energetic.  I left some of my dinner out just in case I get hungry, but I feel actually kind of stuffed.  That’s a big difference from my normal m.o.  Seriously, I can usually eat a lot of food.  With this diet, I am eating a lot of food, but it’s a lot of fiber and high nutrient foods so it satisfies more quickly.

Until tomorrow……

mmmm Soup – Day 2

Day two went well today.  I had a rough day physically, but I don’t believe it has anything to do with the diet.  I was unbelievably tired today.  I woke up with a wicked headache, but I was determined to stay on the diet.  I prayed and stuck to it even though my body was telling me to eat bread.  So, I did school today (I’m a homeschooler) and then I spent the rest of the day in bed, except for the time I took to make lunch and dinner.  I was feeling really achey and my glands were swollen.  I’m feeling a bit better right now.  Here’s the run down for the day:

Breakfast:  whole oats oatmeal with dried blueberries, almond milk, and a banana

Snack:  almond butter with a banana

Lunch:  portobello red pepper pita (but I had it on gluten free bread instead of a pita), and a large salad w/ flax seeds, black beans and dijon date dressing on top.

Snack:  apple

Dinner: This was the highlight of the day:  Golden Australian Cauliflower Soup (the Fuhrman recipe) and a salad w/ more beans and Fuhrman’s caesar dressing on top.  I loved this soup!  I could eat this every day.  Here’s the recipe:

GOLDEN AUSTRIAN CAULIFLOWER CREAM SOUPGolden Cauliflower Soup

SERVES 4

1 head cauliflower, cut into pieces

3 carrots, coarsely chopped

1 cup coarsely chopped celery

2 leeks, coarsely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons Dr. Fuhrman’s VegiZest or other no-salt seasoning

2 cups carrot juice

4 cups water

½ teaspoon nutmeg

1 cup raw cashews

5 cups chopped kale leaves or baby spinach

Place all the ingredients except the cashews and kale in a pot. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are just tender. In a food processor or high-powered blender, blend two-thirds of the soup liquid and vegetables with the cashews until smooth and creamy (I used my immersion blender for this). Return to the pot and heat.  Add the kale or spinach and let it wilt.  The original recipe called for pre-steaming the kale, but that wasn’t necessary.

Banana Oat BarsI wasn’t going to have dessert once again, but my daughter wnated to try out the Yummy Banana-Oat bars, so she made them.  They are yummy.

Diet-wise it was a good day.  I’m not sure why I’m so tired today.  I really wasn’t eating that much junk before I started this, so I don’t think I’m detoxing.  I guess it was just one of those days.  I’m enjoying the recipes a lot.  I made sure to get in my beans today (I had a half cup at lunch and half cup at dinner) and I made sure that I ate my flax seeds today.  I felt very satisfied today.

Until tomorrow…..

Day 1 – Oh, my! All those veggies

Okay, day one is past.   I enjoyed the variety of dishes I had today.  There are some great Dr. Fuhrman recipes in the book and on pinterest.  Back in the day of being a vegetarian, I didn’t have a lot of resources for recipes so I did a lot of stir fries (which is funny, because that’s what I chose to do for dinner tonight).

Breakfast:  a blackberry / chia / kale smoothie that I made (with the aforementioned ingredients) plus coconut water, banana, and cinnamon.  It was very yummy and filling.

Snack: apple

Lunch:  Broccoli with sesame ginger sauce and an enormous salad.  The sesame ginger sauce is pretty good.  I didn’t have any miso, so I skipped it, but I think the miso would mellow the taste of the tahini a bit.  It had a bit of a bitter taste to it.  The dressing for my salad was amazing.  It was a Fuhrman dijon date dressing.  Wow!  What an amazing depth of flavor and no oil added.  I could eat that dressing all of the time.  Here is the recipe:

1 cup water

1/3 cup cashew butter or 2/3 cup raw cashews

4 tablespoons Dr. Fuhrman’s Riesling Raisin Vinegar or balsamic vinegar (I used balsamic)

2 tablespoons Dr. Fuhrman’s VegiZest or other no-salt seasoning (I used Spike, that I found in the natural food section of my grocery store)

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

4– 6 dates, pitted

1– 2 cloves garlic, minced

Blend all the ingredients in a food processor or high-powered blender until smooth and creamy.

Snack:  Banana w/ some almondsAsian Stir Fry

Dinner:  Asian Vegetable stir fry and another salad.  I used some mini bell peppers and asian pear on my salad and used the Fuhrman caesar dressing, which is another amazing dressing.  I know the Eat to Live book says to have big salads before you eat your meal, but I kind of went light on the salad.  It was just a regular bowl of salad.  I like salad a lot, but I’m more of a large salad at lunch and small salad at dinner sort of person.  I guess I just prefer warm food for dinner.

This all was a lot of food today.  Well, I guess you can say it was a lot of veggies.  A Lot.  Really, I like veggies.  I’m an adventurous eater.  Even as a kid I like veggies.  I forgot how many veggies I used to eat when I was vegetarian.  I feel pretty good, though, and satiated.  I didn’t even feel like dessert, but decided to make it anyway.  It’s baking right now and the aroma of cinnamon is amazing.  I’m making the apple strudel.  I think I was just being a little lazy.  But, the good news is that I made my salad dressings yesterday for the week and I’m freezing 2 portions of the stir fry for next week and the other one I’m using on Wednesday, so those are some time savers for me.  And, if I can beat back my family from eating my dessert, I’ll have three more nights of that as well.

Day one done.  I haven’t had any cravings for anything.  I have had a bit of a caffeine withdrawal headache, but that should be gone by tomorrow.  I wasn’t a huge coffee drinker anyway.  I was able to do some yoga today and walking.  Tomorrow I plan on more yoga but no walking – we’re supposed to be getting a major snow storm tonight.  I did pretty well on nutrients today, but I realized that I forgot to have some beans at lunch, so I’ll make sure to have them tomorrow.  I definitely got a lot of fruit and veggies in.

So, onward and upward (or, hopefully downward – the scale, that is).  Until tomorrow…..

Here Goes Nothing

This means nothing:  no meat, no dairy, no oils (at least for the first week)…..Okay, I’m at a point in my life where I have to do something drastic.  I’m over 40 (44 right now, to be exact) and the old saying that it’s easier to be struck by lightning than to lose weight over 40, I’ve found to be true, for me at least.

First of all, I’ll tell you who I am.  I am a born again Christian, sold out to serving God.  I feel like I should be a good testimony in all that I do, whether it be at church, or just going to the grocery store.  It’s really weighed on my heart for a couple of years now that my body is not glorifying to God.  I felt like I was trapped, though.  I was tired, sore, and I have been finding it impossible to lose weight.

So, last week I saw Dr. Fuhrman on the Dr. Oz show.  A lot of what he said rang true for me.  More beans:  okay, I can do that.  No dairy:  well, I have been doing that anyway because my body just doesn’t do well with me at all.  I actually used to eat a lot like this back before I was married, although I did eat dairy; not a lot, but I did eat it.  So, this is a bit of an adventure for me.

I guess I’ll back up a bit and chronicle what has brought me to this point.  Well, I was always an active person until I had my second child.  That’s when the pain started, sometimes crippling pain, but mostly just really annoying pain.  The pain was everywhere yet it didn’t seem to have any rhyme or reason to it.  I first went to the doctor when my oldest son was about 3 or 4 months old.  I couldn’t even walk downstairs without having to sit down and just slide because my legs would hurt so much.  I sometimes felt like I had a fever.  The doctor tested me for rheumatic issues and it all came back negative.  He offered to put me on pain medicine, which I declined.  Two years later, I was pregnant with my second son.  (by the way, I didn’t have any health issues after the birth of my daughter, my first born)  I actually felt great while I was pregnant.  I had no pain or problems.  Then about 6 months after my third was born, the pain began again.

I cut dairy out of my diet and that helped a bit, but it didn’t do miracles.  So, last spring (my youngest was 9 at this point), I was in a lot of pain.  I tried many herbal remedies and different exercises, when I could exercise.  I got desperate.  As a last ditch effort, I decided to try going gluten free.  I had heard that gluten can be inflammatory so I just thought it wouldn’t hurt to try it out.  I didn’t have high hopes.  Miracle of all miracles, within a week, I felt more energetic.  Within two weeks, the pain was subsiding.  Within a month, my digestive tract was working as it should.

So, I’ve been gluten free for a year now.  My energy is much better and my digestive system works the way it should, but I still deal with pain issues, just not as bad as it was.  I still haven’t been losing weight, though.  I’ve been eating fairly clean, organic, watching what I eat and how much.  The weight hasn’t come off like I thought maybe it would.  Right now, I have no overt health issues.  My cholesterol and blood pressure are in normal range.  I don’t have any detectable health issues, just pain.  Now I come to last week and seeing Dr. Fuhrman talk about the Eat to Live diet.

It’s time.  It’s time to do something drastic.  I bought the Eat to Live book on amazon.com on Friday and read through it Friday night and Saturday.  Saturday night, I planned out my food for the week and today I went shopping for all of my groceries.

This is the stats I’m working with:  I’m looking to lose, well, mega pounds.  It seems a little daunting, but I know it can be done.  My number one goal is to bring glory to God.  From there down, my goals are to lose the weight and get control of the pain issues.  I started this blog to keep myself accountable and maybe to encourage others on this journey, and most of all, to give God the glory.

So, here goes nothing….eat to live

adventures in eating to live

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