Tag Archives: diet

My Year (and still going)!

Well, here we are to almost Christmas 2016!  I am still thinking back in April how I never thought we would make it here.  The year has been eventful, and for, those who are new or need catching up, here is a fairly brief summary.

The year has been kinda tough on all of us.  Major points:

  1. My Sister has cancer.  I refuse to give it a capital “C”.  It doesn’t deserve it.  She been taking Chemo for many weeks and is over 1/2 done.  I am simply glad to have her around.  She, too, has a big following on FB and I am often amazed at just how many people care and talk to and about her.
  2.  Dad passed in July after a long year of mostly being in the Nursing Home.  He had fallen twice in the last few years and surgery was not an option because of his missing kidney and low-functioning in the one that remained.  He did not care for his diet and often (really often) refused the food to have them bring him something he was “not supposed” to have.  What do you tell an 83 year old of sound mind?  We just let him enjoy himself.  He was really missed by a lot of people.  He earned the name “Candy Man”  or “Kiss Man” because he would take Hershey Chocolate Kisses with him to pass out to the “mostly” females at restaurants and such.  The local Cracker Barrel group actually told me how much they missed him!
  3. I have been fighting my diabetes for about 7 years now.  That and my blood pressure led to my stroke in May of 2010.  This year I went through some rough times, both with Dad and Sis.  I ate off the charts, giving up nearly 2 years of wonderful blood sugar via vegan dieting.  It was actually low enough that, many mornings, I would wake up and have to eat something sweet and fast because it had dropped to under 60 (normal being 110 and normal diabetic about 120).  At present, my blood pressure is good (great) at 117/73 average.  I am now working out 2x a week at Planet Fitness (a really great place!), which fits even my tight budget.  The diabetes makes it difficult to lose weight or build muscle, so I have now declared war on it.  I have done my research online and read extensively.  I have found what I believe to be the best defense and offense for this bad situation.  My new diet/lifestyle begins with a protein shake-based cleanse followed by 2 months of strong high protein, low fat, low carb dieting.  Then, after that, I should see a dramatic drop in blood sugar and weight and an increase in muscle.  Sometime in the early spring I expect to reduce or illuminate my blood sugar drugs and testing (via Dr. of course).  It is my hope that by next Christmas I will be Diabetes free, down to a decent weight, have good muscle tone, and have, perhaps, stopped or reduced my blood pressure meds (that would stop this stupid leg swelling).  We shall see!  The diet started today about 5:30pm.  I know that cleansing over the holidays is no fun, but I want to get started!!!

I think that’s enough for a year.  I hope all are having a wonderful Holiday and may your Christmas be the most loving time and full of joy.

Namaste,

Scott

To Vegan or not to Vegan…

As many of you know, I have been vegan since July of 2014.  For those that have difficulties knowing what that means, I do not eat meat, nor take in dairy.  That means no hamburgers, no cheese, no eggs, no milk, no ice cream, no regular chocolate.  I did this because I read a good book that discussed research stating nearly all people in the study who stuck to a vegan diet (and they were diabetic) had their blood sugar, their cholesterol, and their blood pressure go down, as well as their weight.  For many they stopped being diabetic about 6-9 months into the program.

My blood pressure, sugar, and cholesterol has, indeed, gone down.  My weight has dropped a bit.  The problem was that, after 17 months of the diet (and being very careful for the first 8 months), I am not satisfied that, the program has been worth it.  My feelings are if I would eat reasonably and exercise I would see as much, if not more, positive results.

I do not feel this means it doesn’t work; it just doesn’t work well enough for me.

So, after some deliberation, I have altered the diet for me.  I will still restrict myself to more leaner meats.  I will still mostly avoid regular chocolate.  I will still cut down on cheese.  I will still, of course, watch my sugar, test my glucose, and blood pressure, as well as take all my meds.

However, I believe my life will be more fruitful  and enjoyable) if I do this in moderation, exercise in moderation (try 20-30 minutes of light-moderate exercise 3x a week), and try to keep more active in general by doing a lot of versatile things.

I no longer love food; I enjoy food, but it no longer rules me.  That came out of this diet.  I proved to myself and others I could do this for over 1 year.  There’s nothing wrong with the diet.  If you watch your protein and vary your foods, it is very healthy.  I may go back on it again if I start feeling sluggish or gaining weight that can’t be explained by muscle.

I just wanted to keep all of you up to date on me, one of my favorite subjects.

I am making some social changes in my life; perhaps, more on that another time.

In the meantime, let me simply wish you all well, eat healthy, enjoy life, and smile – a lot…

Namaste,

Scott

I am Eating What?!

Source: Wiki image search with license for reuse. Click the pic for the page.

Two things tonight:  First, I want to catch you up on me.  Second, I have something I found very interesting.  Many of you may have already known it, but I did not.

First.

My efforts at being vegan and helping my health are working out very nicely.  People have gotten used to me being vegan now, so there’s that problem avoided most of the time.  I take my own food often when I visit someone else, and I get weird combinations at meals out.  As far as health is concerned, my blood pressure has dropped enough I think I may have to talk to the doctor about reducing something in my meds at my visit in December (if not before).  My reading today was 104/34 and that is a tad low for that bottom number.  I don’t feel bad, but still may need to ask.  I have not had my repeat tests; those will be on December 12th.  But my sugar is lower now (my diet is better packed with vegetables) and my weight has dropped 9.6 pounds (a little less than 1 pound per week).  I can even report last night, for the first time in over 2 years, I slept 6.5 hours without getting up!

Second, I have found I really like sauerkraut.  Now, I already knew this, but stayed away because of salt content.  Well, the salt does not seem to be bothering me and I do love the taste.  What I really love is the taste of the brand I buy now at Earth Fare.  It’s made of cabbage, sea salt, and water.  This is what got me to doing some online studying.  I always thought sauerkraut had vinegar in it.  That’s way I thought it was so sour.  Not so!!!  Wiki (link at end) tells me that sauerkraut is fermented cabbage!  I did not know this.  I was fascinated as I read how they leave the cabbage out for days or even weeks to ferment it and make it taste so good.

I then read how very good for you it is.  The enzymes in it are excellent for digestion, the product itself is good for soothing your stomach (that was a big surprise), and there was some talk of it helping to stop cancer.  These are excellent reasons.  The bad part?  Well, the only part mentioned was the resulting flatulence that can happen (read that as “probably will”).  Sounds good to me.  After all, there is some advantage to living alone!

I know I really shortened the wiki article in the above, but that is the main high points.  The article is very well done and you should take the 10 minutes and educate yourself on this particular food product.

Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sauerkraut

Enjoy eating, enjoy living, and enjoying whatever else comes your way.

Namaste,

Scott

Is the Diet Dying?

My diet (minus the top 3 tiers). Yes, I add protein, B12, and D. Obtained from Google image search (licensed for reuse).

Well, it has been nearly 3 weeks on my new vegan diet (actually, a bit extreme vegan diet) and it’s now time to ask the question:

IS THE DIET DYING?!

Let’s see the main rules are:

1) No animal products (no meat, no milk, no cheese, etc…)

2) No added oils (I should get enough from the vegetables and the fruits themselves)

3)  As much low GI as possible (no high fructose, no heavy processed sugar, etc…)

So, the purpose was to reduce my blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol, and weight.

This, in turn would, hopefully, reduce my meds in those categories.

So far, I have not gone off the diet.  I have weighed, tested sugar, and blood pressure each day.

My blood pressure before meds in the morning hover around 132/78 or lower.

My blood sugar is rising slower, not as high, and lowering quicker.

My weight is dropping about 1 pound per week (expected).

I eat no cholesterol so it should be going down.

I feel better, more refreshed, seem to be able to do more, the pain is down, and I may even sleep a bit better.

So, that’s all positives.  I don’t really miss my old foods.  I knew they were either bad for me or just not working.

I eat heavy fiber (at least 30-45 grams per day), quite a bit of high-fiber cereals, oatmeal, fruits, and vegetables.

I am, overall, pretty happy with what’s going on.

Future is to stay on this for the rest of my life.  I think that is very feasible.

I see the doctor early to mid-August for blood work.  I will update you all then.

Thanks for reading.  Love you all.

Namaste,

Scott

A Diet and a Date

This is my new Friday posts instead of doing Flash Friday.  I hope you enjoy!!!

Source: Google Image Search licensed for reuse. Click pic for page.

Well, these last couple of weeks have been both adventuresome and rough.  I would like to discuss two major items in my life during this period.

First, I have been reading the book “Dr. Neal Barnard’s Program for Reversing Diabetes.”  Now, I normally read these with a grain of salt and I did so this time.  However, this book agreed with most all of the research I have already done on the subject, it drew information from other studies done at valued institutions, and it made sense.  I also liked that it really went into some good detail on exactly what happens when I eat different foods (or don’t).  It played down exercise (not because he didn’t find it beneficial, but because the book was about diet).  So, I finally got to read a book that met most of my requirements.

The very basic (please don’t judge the book from this summary) was that a great diet for reversing diabetes is a vegan diet that includes:

1)  No animal products whatsoever (no cheese, meat, milk, animal fat, etc…)

2)  No oils (very minimal)

3)  Focus on low GI index foods (foods that raise the blood sugar level slowly – under 70, I believe)

This put a terrible constraint on my eating habits, but I have to say that, three days into it, I feel pretty good.  Results so far:

1)  My blood sugar is normal (90-100 most of the time)

2)  My blood pressure is normal (120/58)

3)  My weight is slowly moving down (supposed to do about 1 pound a week)

There is a lot to the book, so, if you are thinking about doing this, please read the book!  I could not believe how many of the foods I thought were good for me have animal products in them.  I had to empty (nearly) my cabinets, refrigerator, and freezer.  However, what is in there now is, without a doubt, good for me.

The choices are not as bad as I thought and, in about three months, I should see a very noticeable difference in my blood sugar, blood pressure, and weight.  The idea is to be able to stop taking (or, at least, reduce) many of my medications.  The final hope is that my neuropathy will disappear, my blood pressure will be normal, my blood sugar will be normal, and my cholesterol will be normal, all without any or at least less medications.  Also, at 1 pound a week, I should lose about 12-15 pounds in the three months and it should not come back.

It all sounds good to me, especially since I ate out tonight and had a decent meal.  The meal consisted of:

1)  A cup of long grain rice

2)  A serving of corn

3)  A serving of steamed zucchini and squash

4)  2 slices of plain rye toast

5)  A banana for dessert (I brought this)

I was full and it cost within pennies of what I normally paid.  I also felt good after eating it.  Somehow I feel a bit refreshed (for lack of a better word) all day as far as food is concerned.

I eat a lot of Post Grapenuts and Old Fashioned Rolled Oats (both with unsweetened Almond Milk) with blueberries or sliced strawberries.  I like both of those.  I love rye bread and enjoy eating both fruits and vegetables.

I notice that my sugar does not go as high and it drops reasonably quickly.  Hypoglycemia is the only big worry I have.  A big sugar drop at night can make me dizzy.  I eat a snack shortly before bed.  I don’t sleep right now anyway, so it doesn’t really matter.

Down the road, I hope that it helps my knee and hip so I can exercise (walking) and that the reduced weight will make it all easier.

______________________________

Source: Google Image Search licensed for reuse. Click pic for page.

This second one is simply strange.  I will tell you the basics and let you think about the story.

I went to a nearby town a little over a week ago.  While there, I went to the public library to do some reading.  I sat down next to a woman.  It was the day of the big storm in my area.  When the storm began, she and I started talking for a bit.  We went back to reading our books.  Later she began a conversation with me.  At the end, I asked her to meet for coffee.  She agreed.  We talked some more and decided dinner and a movie would be fine.  I was to pick her up on Saturday (last).  She gave me her cell phone number and email.

We emailed the next day and she sent me her address.  We settled on a time and place as well as which restaurant.

On Saturday, about 1pm, I checked my email and saw she had written me a letter.  In it she said that she was visiting her brother who was fairly near the theater and would I rather we simply met there.  I wrote back saying I would enjoy picking her up and talking, but if she wished to meet it was fine.  I then told her that I would check my email at 2 before I left and if she hadn’t written I would pick her up at her home.

About 2:10, I checked my email, had none from her, so I left for her home (about 40 min away).  My GPS guided me right to her driveway.  I knocked, but no one answered.  After some time, I left a paperback I had found for her on her door and headed to the theater in case things had gotten mixed up.

I arrived at the theater about 10 minutes before the show.  She was not there.  I waited until about 20 minutes after the show began, then headed home.

Since that time, I had emailed her once, texted twice, and called twice.  I have never received an answer back.

I have decided that either something bad has happened or her brother talked her out of coming on the date.  There is nothing else I can do, so I have decided to let it go (though I would like to know).

Anyway, for this, I simply wonder if you have ever had any strange things like this on a date (or a scheduled one)?  How did you feel and what did you do?

Enjoy your weekend.

Namaste,

Scott

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