Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Ugly

Tonight I was talking with a friend and we were discussing our eating habits/diets when the discussion turned to bodily functions.

Later I laughed to myself about our conversation. As moms, when our children are little we discuss their bodily functions like it's no big deal. As we grow older, I guess our conversation turns to our own. (Hi friend, I know you are reading this...Haha!)

With that said, if the thought of hearing about bodily functions grosses you out......you may just want to leave right now.

I've shared with you the good and the bad about eating Paleo but today I'm going to share a little bit about the ugly.

After changing my diet my body became accustomed to good food. It now likes good food and does not like the processed food I was giving it before or even some of the foods that we may think are healthy. As I reintroduce certain foods back, some ugly starts happening.

A few weeks ago I was at a lunch meeting at work. We had Chili's delivered in and I was very excited about my choice. It was a new item on the menu, a Fresh-Mex bowl. It actually was a pretty healthy menu choice or at least I thought. Way better than what I would usually order which would be some sort of huge sandwich with a side of French fries.

Well, this healthy option sent me home sicker than any food has ever made me. Since there was so many different things in it, it is hard to narrow it down but since I had eaten all of the items in the bowl except for one I believe that was the culprit. Black beans. My body has never really liked them before and so I was expecting to not feel the best after eating them but I was not prepared for what happened next.

I felt sick to my stomach. I looked in the mirror and my eyes were red and bloodshot. I ended up leaving the office because I couldn't take it anymore. I laid in bed for an hour before my body decided it was a good idea to get rid of whatever it was. Phew, I did feel cleansed after all that! Needless to say, I will never eat a black bean again in my life.

Honestly, as good as I feel when I am eating better, in the last month I have had some days where I feel worse than I have felt in a long time all because of what I've eaten.

I do have reactions to gluten. Not bad but I know what will happen later that day if I eat it and if I eat it too many times in a row, what will happen. Just know that I am sparing you the details :)

I've been cheating more with sugar as well lately which I believe caused the worst PMS this month than I have had in years.

It's been hard to tell with dairy because I don't eat a lot of dairy and when I do eat it, it's usually cheese and accompanies some sort of grain. I have had it a couple times on it's own and it doesn't seem to bother me or have any later side effects.

Brad wants to do a hard core Whole30 again in May, so I might do it just to reintroduce foods again with a little bit more of a plan and see how my body reacts to each thing instead of trying to guess.

In other news, I have gotten down to my goal weight and I did it without starving myself and having to exercise just to be able to eat more food. I still try to exercise 3 times a week but now it's just for physical activity and not to reward myself with food.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Mostly Paleo

Today I made Monster Cookies with the girls. They were delicious. I should know, I ate 4 of them.

It's funny, Brad and I both have our different things that we 'treat' ourselves with. Mine is that random cookie (or 4). We also try to have a meal a week that we 'treat' ourselves with. Saturday night was pizza. I must say, it was so delicious but then 3 hours later I felt sick to my stomach. So now I'm left wondering if those 'treats' are worth it.

Today I thought I would answer the question of what is the difference between Whole30 and Paleo and where exactly do we lie in all of this. If any of my Paleo and Whole30 friends want to add anything to this, please feel free in the comments. I'm always reading more about Paleo and am not an expert.

Whole30 is what we did for the month of February. It's more of a detox. Getting rid of all the sugar, grains, and dairy in your body so that you can see how your body reacts once you introduce them back into your diet. We basically detoxed our body but never did the slowly introducing them back into our diet to see how we react to each thing. I have noticed reactions when eating things I don't normally eat and do think it's gluten I'm reacting to because I don't eat a lot of dairy but I can't really say for sure since there has been gluten and dairy in what I ate. Whole30 is much stricter than Paleo. With Whole30 you completely cut out sweeteners. We were very strict with this for the first 3 weeks. After that I did add in some natural sweeteners like honey and maple syrup. Since they are so expensive it definitely keeps you to having them in moderation.

Paleo is a way of life. This is what we are striving for. Although you still stay away from most of the things that you do not have with the Whole30, you can still have some grains, sweeteners, and some cheeses in moderation. I am still finding my way with some of these things and deciding what we will allow back in our diet.

Rice is one of the things you can have in moderation but our family isn't huge on rice to begin with so it's not a big deal to be without. I was happy to learn that I can sprinkle some Parmesan on my food.

There are a few things that I did give up on. One is sauces. Paleo sauces are costly to make, they don't taste that good and they don't keep very long in the fridge so I end up dumping most of it. Since we don't use condiments, dressings, and sauces that often, I've stopped spinning my wheels on this one and am going to buy them at the store but I will be more diligent about checking the labels.

One of the hardest things about Paleo is having to plan every meal. Although there are plenty of easy meals to make, it's still planning. There aren't those fast, easy convenience meals for those busy days. That's why I decided that corn taco shells would be fine so that we can have tacos again. They are still gluten free. And a small amount of cheese on a taco won't kill us.

So, in the end, Brad and I would probably classify ourselves as about 80% Paleo. We try to stick to it as much as possible because we have seen such a difference in our health but we also want to enjoy some of the things that we have enjoyed for years, within reason and in moderation.

And with the kids, I still don't buy a lot of packaged food for them. They are probably 70% gluten free and I've cut back on a lot of the sugar they eat. I try to bake them something each week to treat them and it is usually gluten free. They love picking out a cookie to make and helping me make it. We've cut out chips and I started making our own trail mixes.

On a different note, I oil pulled for the first time this morning. For those of you who have never heard of this, basically you swish oil around in your mouth for 20 minutes. The bacteria in your mouth sticks to the oil and then you spit it out. I did it for 15 minutes this morning and I used coconut oil. I was amazed at how clean my mouth felt all day. I'm excited to see the results as I continue to do it!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Changing the Way I Shop

I was forced to start running last week.

I'm not sure I was ready but I did it. As much as I hate running, I also love running that much too.

It makes no sense but it's true. I think it's because I feel like I'm getting somewhere and I can track how far I've gone.

Last Tuesday I went to get on the elliptical. My elliptical is cheap. You don't plug it in, it has batteries to control it. When the batteries go dead it is very hard to use it. As you guessed, on Tuesday the batteries went dead. The kids were watching TV and we only have one TV, so 30 Day Shred was not an option. My last option was to set up the treadmill in the garage. I did and now my running has started.

Aren't you glad I told you all that :)

Anyway, to continue with things to expect when changing the way you eat.

#3- I expected to change the way I cooked and expected to change what I eat but what I didn't expect is how hard it would be to change the way I shop.

I've been doing the grocery shopping in our house for 13 1/2 years. I always checked the sale paper before I went to the grocery store and made my list from what was in that paper. That is how I decided what our family was going to eat. By Price. 

The first week I went into Aldi I couldn't believe how difficult it was. That is when I realized not only was I retraining my brain with what I'm putting into my mouth, not only am I having to find all new recipes to cook, but I need to retrain my brain when it comes to my shopping. 

No longer can I buy according to price but I need to buy according to what is good for us. It was hard for me to go from buying the $1 bag of chips or pretzels to buying the $6 bag of pistachios. 

For the most part I have finally gotten past price but don't worry, this frugal girl still looks for the best deal. I have a whole list of the stores I shop at and who has the best deals. I've started shopping at Meijer because they seem to have healthier options at the best price. They also have good sales on produce. I still check sale papers but I only need to look at a couple of the pages. Meat and Produce. I also just found that there are two places in Meijer with raw almonds and the cheaper bag is in the baking aisle. Score!

I make more trips to the grocery store but they also are shorter trips. When you are buying produce, meat, and nuts only, you get to skip most of the grocery store. 

The top stores on my list are Meijer, Aldi, Jewel, and Produce Depot. If you have a membership to Costco, they also have healthier options than Sam's Club. If you don't, do what I do and head there with someone who does. I've also been trying GFS since you can buy in bulk without a membership. They don't have a ton but there are a few things that I found there that our family likes.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

A Little Bit of This and A Little Bit of That

Last week was a bad week. There were lots of things going on and eating at various places which resulted in 5 days straight that I had gluten. And of course there was some sugar too. This girl needs a cookie every once in a while.

It wasn't all day long but at least one meal each of those days.

The result?

By Sunday I felt sluggish. I also had a couple headaches during those days and I rarely ever get headaches.

So, with that said, Monday I was back on track.

I want to continue sharing with you some things you should expect if you start Whole30 or just want to start eating healthier. So here is #2: Expect to spend a lot of time in the kitchen.

In order to keep from straying when you are busy, it's best to have food easily accessible. If you want to snack on veggies and you have to peel it and chop it, how likely are you going to do that right at the time you want to eat it? When we first started, I chopped up everything for recipes and snacks ahead of time so all I had to do was grab it out of the fridge.

You will also have to make every meal, which means Preparation. We do a lot of scrambled eggs for breakfast, so I try to have peppers, mushrooms, onion, bacon or sausage, sweet potatoes  ready to go so that I can just throw them in. Cooking breakfast goes much quicker then and we are more likely to eat a healthy breakfast instead of just grabbing a piece of fruit or not eating at all.

Same thing with lunch. If I want to make a salad, it's much easier if all the vegetables are already chopped and I can just throw them on top.

It also takes time out of making supper if I have these things chopped for my meal and can just throw them in the skillet.

But don't worry, it gets better. Yes, I still spend a lot of time in the kitchen but it has decreased a lot now that I know what we like, now that we are less likely to grab the unhealthy snack, and I've developed a little more of a system.

On a different note~

Last week I was talking to a friend of mine and she told me how she had cut out almost all Gluten and Dairy for a week and shared with me the great benefits she was having. I asked her if I could share with all of you. So here is what she wrote:

This past year I was diagnosed with a blood disease called Von Willebrand's disease. It is tied to an autoimmune disease. (Basically your body attacks itself.) For me my body attacks my blood. My platelets are usually low and the Von Willebrand factor which helps clotting is very low. I bruise very easily, have a hard time forming clots, and my monthly cycle is debilitating. Autoimmune diseases run in my family. My sister has Lupus and my mom has Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. This past month my sister was seeing a specialist in order to see what was causing her Lupus to flare up. She diagnosed her with Leaky Gut. So in order to determine what she is sensitive to they started her on a sugar free, dairy free, and gluten free diet. She convinced me to try it as well. I was desperate to get off my medicine (Stimate) that helps keep my menstrual cycle under control. The side effects were terrible and wasn't getting to the root of the problem. It was just managing the symptoms. So I began to change my diet. I cut sugar out but didn't cut dairy and gluten out completely. I only allowed myself organic cream for my morning coffee and 1 serving of whole grains. I replaced one meal with a veggie and fruit smoothie. To my amazement after being on the diet for 7 days my period came and I didn't need my medicine. For the first time in years it was normal and 2 days shorter. Wow! If I had only known that changing my diet could improve my health that much I would have done this sooner. At the end of this month I see my Hematologist and I'm looking forward to what my blood tests reveal.

I never tire of hearing the results people are having by eating healthier. If you have a story to share, let me know. I'd love to post it on here.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

As Promised

I've had several people contact me that they would like to start Whole30 and I've even had some tell me that they have already started and one family that I found out are veterans to Whole30. Since there has been so many asking what we eat I want to share in more detail exactly what we did and some things we've learned along the way that may help anyone wanting to eat healthier.

What do we cook?

What do we eat?

How do I start?

Things to be prepared for.


You must plan. If you are not a planner, you need to become one. While you're at it you should become a list maker too. Both are great things. Believe me. Plan what to eat and then make a list about what to eat, what to buy, where to buy it. It's fun. I promise.

If you don't plan you will be more likely to just grab whatever you can find in the house or stop and pick up fast food.

I planned for almost a month before we started. I read, I plotted, and I planned. We ate up the stuff that was in our closet and pantry, and did not bring anymore of it in. I stocked up on meat as I found it on sale so that I didn't have to go out all at once and buy a lot. And most of all I found new recipes and pinned them. If you aren't on Pinterest, I highly recommend signing on. Search Paleo or Whole30 and you will find recipes for breakfast, lunch, supper, and snack ideas. Feel free to follow me on Pinterest and find some ideas on my Paleo board. I am hoping to organize them a little better over the next couple weeks.

Plan your food. After pinning lots of recipes it was time to start planning what we were going to eat. There is definitely a lot more planning to do the first couple weeks because you are changing ALL of your eating habits. I was used to planning what was for supper but now I had to plan EVERY SINGLE meal! Breakfast is a must and if you don't plan what you are going to eat, you probably won't eat. If I was going to be gone I needed to make sure I planned ahead of time what I was going to have for lunch.

Now that I have 5 weeks under my belt it has gotten easier. I still make a weekly meal plan for supper but breakfast, lunch and snacks have gotten easier because I know what we like.

For those of you that are hardcore Whole30, I know you are supposed to eat 3 meals and not snack. I started following that but have gone back to a small snack in the morning and the afternoon.

I hope this helps and I'll continue to share more tips in future posts.

Friday, March 7, 2014

The Numbers Are In

The proof is in the pudding.

Or shall we say, the proof is in saying 'No' to the pudding. Even Chocolate Pudding. And Banana Pudding. I've never had Peanut Butter Pudding but I imagine it would be good. So, you should even say 'No' to Peanut Butter Pudding.

The point is......You are what you eat. And I think Brad's recent blood test showed exactly that.

Yesterday I picked up the results and I am still in amazement! I asked the nurse to print out last years and this years for me.

Last years numbers reflect Brad not being on any medication and eating whatever he wanted as well as no exercise. I should point out though that he does not have a sedentary job and spends most of the time at work walking and on his feet. He is horrible at taking medication and has already told his daughters that when they get older, if I'm not around they need to come over and make sure he takes his meds otherwise he will die. I'm not so sure if I'm still alive he should rely on my memory either.

This year Brad was taking his medication in December and January. But as I mentioned, he's not so good at it, so it was definitely not daily. The first week in February his meds were gone and I did not go and get more.

Without further ado......here are the results.

These are the results after just 26 days of us changing what and how we eat.

Triglycerides- the normal range is less than 150.

Last years test shows he was at 735.

I know! How was he walking around.

And this year.........

Drum roll please.......


I can't believe it either. It's amazing!!!!

Now to the HDL Cholesterol-  Normal is above 40.

Last year Brad was at 24.

It was about 11 years ago when he first found out this number was low. His Dr. at the time told him that with diet and exercise he would be lucky to get that number to 36.

Drum roll again please......

Now it's at exactly 40.

Last year his Glucose and Non-HDL Cholesterol were also both out of the normal range and are both back in the normal range this year.

I am still amazed at the results after just 26 days. Let me say it again, 26 DAYS!!!!!

If you are sick of taking your meds.......what do you have to lose! Except some weight and the bills for those pills.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014


First I'll start with a couple news articles in health that I heard the last couple days that I found interesting.

Sugar. They've changed the recommendations for how much sugar we should have each day. For women, we should only have 6 teaspoons or 25 grams a day. That means if you drink a can of pop, you've already had more than that for the day.

Here is the full article.


Last night as I was watching the news they had a segment on high-protein diets and a link to a higher risk of cancer. Of course, we are eating a lot of protein now. I guess no matter what you eat it's going to kill you. I'm not really sure what we are supposed to eat anymore except for vegetables. My thoughts........if you are eating a well balanced diet and you feel good, leave the rest in God's hands. We need to take care of our bodies but I'm not going to get anxious over it either. But I did want to share the article on this as well.


Now that I'm done boring you with "the news", I'll share what's been going on over here.

Saturday marked the end of our Whole30 but really it ended up being a Whole26.

We went to a friend's house on Saturday night and I had told her to not worry about our diet, at that point we would be ready to eat whatever was there. And guess what I got to bring????? Yep, Dessert. I'm sure that doesn't come as much of a surprise. I made some delicious Pretzel Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars that were drizzled with chocolate and are amazing! I also made some brownies. You better believe that I did not pass up either one.

I will be honest. I was a little scared to end the strictness of our diet. After that point I told myself that I would stick to the diet for the most part but I now have license to eat other things in moderation. It is much easier to say 'No' all the time than to make the decision of when to say 'No' and when to say 'Yes'.

So far I've done pretty good. But it helps that I'm feeling great, my pants are fitting good again, my cravings are gone, and no more mid-afternoon slump.

Yes, I see that chocolate and I would love to eat it all but I also know the affects of it if I eat too much.

Brad on the other hand is an all or nothing kind of guy. He's afraid if he gives in to any sugar it will be the end. He said his cravings are not completely gone and last week there were still a couple days that he really wanted to have a pop. He didn't have any dessert on Saturday. I admire his strength.

Throughout our month he discussed things he missed and how he wanted to incorporate some of it back into his diet. He wanted regular milk, cheese on his salads, and a piece of toast with his breakfast. Now that we've gotten to this point he has changed his mind and for now isn't going back to any of those things.

He has lost almost 20 lbs and had his blood work done last week. I need to go pick it up yet to compare it to last years. I'm excited to see the results! I'll share when I have them.

Some of you have told me you are thinking about doing the same thing, so next time I hope to start sharing some tips that I have now that I have a month under my belt.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

You had me at Systemic Inflammation

That's where they got me.

Yep, I'm back to the book.

It Starts With Food starts off talking about the science of the body.


Not a fan of science. Never have been, never will be. I struggled through most of it, found a few things interesting, and then finally skipped over a chapter.

Then I got to the chapter on Systemic Inflammation.

I was hooked.

First, I would like to give the disclaimer that I am in no way in the medical field or a nutritionist and so really I have no idea what I'm talking about, I'm just sharing what I read in a book. And I always believe everything I read. Don't you?

Just kidding. I don't but this made sense to me and if anything I figured I might as well try the diet and find out for myself. I mean, really, what do I have to lose except for 30 days of healthy eating. Seems like a win, win to me.

Anyway, back to Systemic Inflammation or better yet, Chronic Systemic Inflammation.

What is it? Good question.

It is a long-term, full-body inflammation that is caused by the food that we eat. Basically, there is a whole science behind how the body works and how the food we eat causes this Inflammation. I could try to explain it to you but I don't want to bore you because it bores me just thinking about it. Plus I'm not sure I really understand it. (I'm really convincing you on all of this aren't I?)

But here is the interesting part, the list of conditions caused by this Inflammation.

It truly flabbergasted me! You mean to tell me this list can all be cured by just eating the right foods?

There is a whole page but here are some:

acne, allergies, anemia, arthritis, asthma, bipolar, cancer, celiac disease, chronic pain, Crohn's disease, dementia, depression, diabetes, eczema, endometriosis, gingivitis, Grave's disease, heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, infertility, IBS, joint pain, migraines, multiple sclerosis, obesity, Parkinson's, and a lot more.

The ones that I have included here are because they either are things that pertained to me and Brad, I know people that suffer from them, or I was just amazed that changing your diet could cure these diseases. Instead we continue to eat bad food and then take medications to combat them.

Another thing that really spoke to me was that it affects your physical fitness. Last fall I was training to run a 10k but had to drop out because of painful joints and I just wasn't progressing in my running. I am excited to start running again this Spring and am hoping that changing my diet has helped.

Brad has had high triglycerides and will be having blood work done in the next couple weeks. I am really excited to see what his levels are like.

One thing that I found that is very exciting is that MOST (not all) of these health consequences are reversible.

This is something I just wanted to share with you all because if you are like me, this is news to you and maybe eye opening!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Three Weeks

It's been a full three weeks since we started our Whole30 eating lifestyle so I thought I would give an update on how it's been going.


I thought we were making progress this week as they sat one evening each eating a different fruit for their snack. And then two kids asked for kale chips in their lunch. Suppers have been going good. Not too much complaining.

But then.......Saturday I took them to Aldi and had to hear how mean I was for taking them to the store, walking them past all kinds of good food and not letting them get any of it.

I did make my first attempt at Paleo baking yesterday. I made banana bread. Although it tastes different, it was good and the kids loved it. We will keep trying new things. It's baby steps with them but I have hope that we will get there and that they will thank me in the end.


He has lost about 15 pounds already. The other night he was walking around the house and he looked like one of those thugs with most of his boxers showing. I asked him if his pants were untied or if they were really that loose. They were really that loose. So if you see Brad and he looks like a thug, he isn't trying to make a fashion statement. He just forgot to put a belt on.

I asked him the other day how he was feeling and he said that he wasn't feeling great but the exhaustion that he normally feels is gone. Which is saying a lot since he had a couple days this week that he got up at 2am. It apparently is enough for him to keep going.

I tried to make a dessert last night. Brad told me not to do it again because it needed sugar and just reminded him that he can't have it.


I haven't had the weight loss success that Brad has had but I guess that's good because I don't have that far to go. I've been feeling good but still waiting for that "great" feeling as well. Some days I feel like I have a ton of energy and the afternoon slump is almost non-existent. My joints have been feeling better and I've added in exercise. I didn't have huge goals this week but I had goals. My goal was to go on the elliptical 3 times this week for 15 minutes.

I like to start small.

For the first time ever in my life, I exceeded an exercise goal. I actually got on the elliptical 4 times. Twice for 15 minutes and twice for 20 minutes. I think this is the first time ever that I felt like I need to exercise to burn off the energy and I even enjoyed it.

Each day you will get a different story from me. Some days I am in love with doing this and others I just want to stop and get a cheeseburger, pick up a bunch of snacks that come in a box and give them to my kids, and then eat a big brownie.

I'm trying to stay focused. I am enjoying finding new recipes and we have enjoyed eating most of them. Who knew I would get a thumbs up on salmon cakes and on acorn squash.


I've been asked how this is affecting our budget. It's hard to say since this is the first month but so far I can say it has gone up a little. As we go along though I think I will be able to get it back down. This month we are trying to find what we like. One thing that Brad likes to snack on is nuts and banana chips. The banana chips do have some sugar but we do our best.

Pistachios are a must around here and they are not cheap.

The kids finally had me try one the other day and they are good. I usually don't like food that makes me work to get to it. That's why I'd never tried one. Now that I know they are good, I've been eating them too. SHHHHHH......don't tell Brad.

Even though it's gone up, there are other areas that things go down. We haven't eaten out as a family at all this month. Plus Brad and I both take an allowance if we want to eat lunch out or Brad likes to buy a pop at work or other small things. We aren't really needing that this month either.

I do end up at the grocery store a lot more than I used to but my visits are shorter and less items. I'm learning what is cheaper at which store and which stores have the best healthy options. Once I get that figured out, I will know what to stock up on and things should get easier.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Isn't It Ironic

My last post talked about how I miss sugar and this one is going to tell you how bad sugar is for you.

Yes, I have split personalities when it comes to that grainy, delicious, deadly, white substance.

It goes to show you just how addictive it is. But I must report, that I do feel my cravings have gone down a lot this week.

 Of course, I did bake some cookies for my kids last night and it took every bit of will power to not lick the bowl. At one point I had gotten some on my finger and I asked if I could lick it off. My kids then erupted into chants of "LICK IT! LICK IT!  LICK IT!"

Brad just looked at me and said, "This doesn't look good for when they are teenagers." I then had flashbacks to when I was a teenager and decided I was not giving into the peer pressure.

But I digress.....let me get back on track.

Right, Sugar is bad for you.

Two years ago I read something, not sure where I saw it but it has stuck with me.

Sugar feeds cancer.

As soon as I read that I wanted to cut back on my sugar immediately. But there is one problem, sugar is addictive.

You see........at the young age of 32 my mom was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. She also got it back a second time. I was trying to calculate how old she was when she got it the second time. From my calculations it must have only been about 2 or 3 years later because of my age.

I say all that because when I read that about sugar, I thought, why on earth would I want to continue to give my body something that will feed the disease that I am at such a high risk of being diagnosed with.

So, for me that is how it all started. And in January, I decided that we needed to cut back on the sugar in our house. As I started to read labels (I never was much for reading those things) I was shocked that EVERYTHING has sugar added to it.

We can talk about eating it in moderation but if 90% of what you eat has sugar added to it, it's not really eaten in moderation anymore.

Today I saw this posted on Facebook and thought I would share it.

25 Reasons to Stop Eating Sugar

I do want to add that yes, I will eat sugar again. But my goal all along was for myself and my family to eat a lot less sugar and that is still my goal. I also want to clarify that when I'm talking about sugar I am not talking about natural sugar. We still eat fruit over here.

In the book It Starts With Food I read that a 20 ounce soda (or pop as I like to refer to it) has 36 grams of fructose. In order to equal that in fruit you would have to eat 5 bananas, 9 cups of strawberries, or 90 cherries! That just goes to show you much sugar we actually consume!

Now, if I can just get my kids to be on board with me!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

I Miss You

I miss sugar.

And peanut butter.

And chocolate.

And Ice Cream.

And all of them together.

One day we will be reunited and it will be Oh So Sweet! (pun intended)


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

I Want Some of That

Day 10

This morning I received a text from Brad.

Thanks for your hard work on this diet. I feel good today!
This came from the guy that can drink a cup of coffee and go to sleep 5 minutes later. The guy that can drink a 5 hour energy and it doesn't affect him at all.


That is one of the biggest reasons I started us on this diet.

Brad has been complaining of fatigue and lack of energy for a really long time. I am also sick of the fatigue. As long as I keep moving I'm fine but as soon as I sit down I just want to sleep.

I would love to have energy to play with my kids!

One of the biggest testimonies I've heard from people who eat clean and also throughout It Starts With Food  is how great everyone feels and the amount of energy they have.

I REALLY wanted to know what that feels like. So willing to know, that I was willing to give up all the foods I love. All the foods I've eaten my whole life.

Monday I started feeling this energy. I was actually cleaning my house at 7pm. Something I never have energy to do at that point.

I'm excited that it's turning around for Brad too. One of my biggest fears was that after all this, it wouldn't affect him just like caffeine and 5 Hour Energy don't.

If we are starting to feel this good already, I'm looking forward to see how we feel by next week!

Monday, February 10, 2014

You Lose Weight Because.....

People end up losing weight on this diet because you eat for nutrition not for sport.

No one ever craved a carrot stick in the middle of the afternoon or an hour after supper.

Well, maybe someone has. But not anyone that lives in this house.

"It's a hard knock life..."

That's what my son came into my bedroom singing tonight. I'm trying to break them of their evening cookie habit. They have been surviving by finding any old sweets left hiding around the house. They've been doing good so far. Last night they were left with some old Fudgecycles. Tonight there was nothing left.

They are trying to break me.

I won't let them.

That's all I have today.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Being Social While Dieting is not Easy!

Since I decided to blog about this crazy food journey we are on, I feel like I need to be honest when things were eaten that are not on "the list."

It all started with a certain person believing that the pizza was Paleo. So it was eaten. (That pizza did smell REALLY good! I wanted that pizza!) That same person also couldn't watch a movie without eating popcorn. I am not naming names but it wasn't me.

I wish that I could say that I was perfect but I was not. I had a piece of chocolate. The chocolate did not have sugar in it but it had peanuts. I found out after the first one that it had peanuts but I still chose to eat the second one. That little bit of sweetness did show me how addicting sweet stuff is and how it messes with my mind. It truly is an addiction. I thought about that little piece of chocolate for a long time and had to keep fighting to not grab another one.

I also had communion at church this morning.  Gluten. Yes, my church does offer gluten free communion but that would have required me to walk to the back of church and get it. I didn't feel it was necessary.

Of course, I think there are other minor things too. Like the small amount of sugar in my bacon. The pickles that I opened today had a couple ingredients that I'm pretty sure are not allowed. I'm having to just tell myself that I'm doing all I can and those couple little things are not failures. We are still eating way better than we did before!

I have always thought of myself as a planner. I was pretty sure that I didn't have a spontaneous bone in my body. Turns there is one area of my life where I am spontaneous. With food. I wake up in the morning and I decide what I want for breakfast. It's lunchtime? Hmmmmm......What should I have?

I did start meal planning for supper a couple months ago but really just for the week nights. The weekends were decided on the weekend.

Now I am having to plan every single meal. I have to admit.....It's exhausting! I keep telling myself that this is like when we started budgeting 5 years ago. It was a lot of work in the beginning but after a while it just becomes a way of life. I am looking forward to that but I'm sure it will be a while.

Plus I am getting really sick of eggs, carrot sticks, cucumbers. I'm trying to find creative things for breakfast and lunch. But we did have a great beef roast for our Sunday lunch. We had to skip the mashed potatoes and gravy. Brad wasn't too happy about the no gravy thing, so I will have to find a thickening agent that is not cornstarch or flour. We also had some really good fruit smoothies tonight. So it's not all bad!

On the plus side, I am already noticing a difference in my skin. Generally I look at myself in the middle of winter and it looks pasty white and dull. My skin has life to it, seems a lot smoother and better hydrated.

We've made it through the first week. Here's hoping week 2 is easier! And thanks to all of you that have commented and encouraged us in this. I appreciate it and it keeps me going!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

I Never Meant For It To Come To This

We have completed Day 3. I have to give kudos to my husband. He woke up late this morning so did not get his breakfast, he then left his lunch at home, he had no money, his phone is broken so I couldn't text him to see if I could come bring him his lunch, and then he went straight to someone's house to paint their basement. It had all the makings of eating something not on "the list." Thankfully someone at work owed him lunch and he was able to buy a chicken breast. Good job Brad!

Both of us have been feeling fine. By fine I mean, no different than before. I've heard that we would feel really bad for a couple weeks. I've had moments where I'm not feeling "the best." Tired, some abdominal pain but nothing bad. Brad said he feels just like he did every other day. Maybe the worst is coming yet.

The worst part for me is mid-afternoon. I start craving food. Tuesday I went into work and there were cinnamon rolls, candy, and the last piece of chocolate peanut butter bacon pie. I had brought the last piece to work last week for everyone to try but they had forgotten to eat it. I had the pleasure of watching them all eat it and tell me how amazing it was. It pains me to even type this. I want a bite! After I left work I had a couple errands to run. The worst part of living where we do is that there are restaurants at every turn.

Here is what was going on in my head:

"Five Guys....I want a burger and fries!"
"Dickeys......mmmmm, BBQ!"
"I just want a cookie!"
"I just want to eat real food. Oh wait, I am eating real food. I want fake food!"

I haven't been eating much fruit but today I gave in and needed something sweet. I made a strawberry mango smoothie. After not having sweets for a couple days, even that tasted REALLY sweet.

So, how did all this craziness begin?

I won't bore you with all the details but for about a year I've wanted our family to be healthier but frankly food bores me. Well, unless it's tasty and going in my mouth. What I mean by it bores me is that I don't really understand all the science of it. What is healthy and what isn't. To me Sun Chips were healthy because hey, they are better than Cheetos right? Yogurt is healthy because it's dairy, even though it's loaded with sugar. Really, I just didn't know where to begin. Packaged food is easy. If I buy what everyone likes, I don't have to hear a bunch of complaining. And honestly, I just didn't know where to start.

Did you know if you add spices to your meat it tastes good? Yep, no canned items needed. It's amazing the things you learn!

Over the past year I have seen friends start a healthy lifestyle and it intrigued me.

The beginning of January a Facebook friend posted a video and it showed up on my feed. I was set to have Brad and I start counting calories again. But in this video it talked more about "what" you eat, now "how much" you eat. Really? It's not about how many calories you are eating but are you putting healthy food into your body? Who knew?

I talked to Brad about it, asked him to watch the video. Of course, his response was, "Give me the Cliff notes." So I did. He didn't argue about eating healthier, so I started to pursue it.

A friend of mine had started eating Paleo in the fall and so I asked her about it and just asked for resources for recipes. She told me to read a book called "It Starts With Food" by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig. Hey, it must be a good book, Melissa wrote it. I had told my friend that I really just wanted to cut a lot of the sugar that we eat out of our diet. But I didn't want to get all crazy cutting dairy out and wheat. I never meant for it to go this far.

I headed to the local library and checked out the book and the rest is history.

The first part of the book is very sciency. I'll be honest, I hate science. Part of the reason I dropped out of college was because I was going to have to take Biology the next year. I was pretty sure I wouldn't pass. I just don't get it. So, I admit, I skipped over some of it because it was far too mind boggling for me.

But what I did read made sense. Plus, I figured, if changing our eating habits had no effect on how we feel, then I guess we ate healthier for a month. What did we have to lose? While I was reading the book, I started looking at labels. I was startled to find that about 90% of the food in our house has sugar in it.

I will not go through everything the book says because there is no way I could sum it up. Through my blogs I think you will end up understanding what we are doing. But if you are interested in learning more, I would suggest reading the book or you can go to their website Whole9.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Day 1

I survived.

Actually, it wasn't so bad.

I was warned that I would probably have a couple weeks of not feeling so good before it gets better and I definitely had my moments. A couple hours after lunch and then again about an hour after supper, I felt tired and just yuck. It lasted about an hour and then I was all good. Brad said it went good. I think the hardest part for him will be the not snacking when he gets home from work. But with that said, he has much more will power than I do.

This is definitely a lot of work. Thankfully I like to hang out in the kitchen because I am spending a lot of time in it. Brad thinks I'll give up simply because of all the prep. I'm trying to have veggies already cut in the fridge to save on prep at meal time but the hardest part is breakfast. In order for us to have a healthy breakfast, I have to make it the night before so that we can just pop it in the microwave. Especially for Brad since he gets up at 4:30 already. I entertained the idea of getting up with him in the morning.....that idea quickly left my head!

Then there is the entertainment value in watching my kids eat spinach and avocado at supper time. They did pretty good. There has been worse things! I'm thinking Brad isn't a fan of the spinach either since he left half of his on his plate and he told me the frittata this morning had too much spinach in it He is really being a good sport about all of this.

Also, a word to those who attempt to make homemade mayo.......Read the instructions. Dumping all the ingredients in a bowl together and then reading the instructions will result in a bad batch of mayo.

Since I mentioned "kids" earlier, it begs the question......are the kids participating in all this fun?

The answer is "kind of". I am letting them finish off all the sugary junk in the house and then they are also going to have to get used to healthier snacks. I am not making them go Gluten free or dairy free but we will be lowering a lot of their sugar intake. Ever since they were little I was set on making one supper and they had to eat what we eat. That will be no different. They will eat what we eat, hence the spinach and avocados at supper.

We will all be trying new foods and we will have FUN doing it. Haha!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

I'm Back

It's been a while.

One year, one month, and 21 days. Or something like that. Don't hold me to the math.

And yes, I realize I need a blog makeover. My kids are much older now. I will take care of that....eventually.

So, for the two people who have said something to me in the last year about my absence, I will get to the point of why I'm back.

I've gone back and forth about whether or not to share on here what I'm about to share but....here I am.

We are changing our diet. Changing what we eat. Trying to get healthier.

If you have heard of Paleo or Whole30 then you know what we are doing. No more dairy, wheat, sugar, processed foods. As my brother-in-law asked me, "What can you eat?" He realized the list would be shorter. For the most part we will be eating meat, vegetables, some fruit, and nuts. Whole foods.

Tomorrow is the day. I'm scared and excited all at once.

I'm having to give up all the sweets that I love so much but at least I still get bacon and I don't have to give up my morning coffee.

As the days go on I will be sharing with you a number of things. How it's going, why we are doing this, what exactly we are doing, answer some questions that people have asked me as we plan to do this, our hopes of what changes we will see, and maybe even what exactly we are eating.

If you have any questions, I'd love to hear them and I'll try to address them as I post.