Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Figuring it all out...

The funny thing about food is that as soon as you think you've gotten it all figured out, you find out that there is something that you didn't know that ends us being so important.

I've been working on the wheat and gluten thing for a little bit of time now but I keep finding that I'm reacting more and more to different foods that used to be okay for me.

Geez! As if the wheat and gluten weren't enough!

Seriously though, I can feel a difference in my body and in my energy. It's amazing to think how much time I spent feeling not 100% and not knowing why. Sure I could have exercised more, eaten more fruits and vegetables, drank more water and gotten more sleep, but this whole wheat and gluten thing goes deeper than just all of that. Did you know that wheat and gluten is everywhere?

I'm telling myself over and over again that I need to cook more to keep myself healthy. To be honest, I'm okay about it but my problem is a little different than just cooking.

I'm frustrated by not being able to eat anything and everything that I want. I want to be able to just go into a store and know that I can eat, without a reaction, anything I want in that store.

The reality is that I can't.

The real truth is that I'm okay with it but I'm not sure where to start first. With the weather getting warmer, turning to beans and rice just seems too heavy.

SO, fruits and veggies?

Sounds like the best idea so far.

My favorite cookbook so far is "Greens, Glorious Greens." There are just so many incredible recipes and I've only scratched the surface.

I'm also thinking of reenstating my summer smoothie habit. I just can't wait for the weather to get a little bit warmer. As I'm sitting here typing, it's about maybe 60 degrees and raining outside. Definitely not warm enough to start thinking raw.

My next summer experiment is going to be raw meals. Don't get me wrong, I love a good BBQ and I love meat, but there are just some totally yummy raw dishes out there.

If you're in NYC, head down to Pure Food & Wine (or if they'll let you, Pure Juice & Takeaway) and ask for the lasagna. It's made of squash and so yummy. Then again, you could just take a trip down there for the Bunny Brew.

Come to think of it, when the weather gets a little less rainy, I'll also need to take a trip down to Babycakes for my tummy friendly sugar fix. If you're interested, let me know!

I have a lot of experiementing to do. I'm going to be checking out Gluten-free Girl's blog and any other gluten free resources that I can find.

I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Experiments in Eating!!!

I love food.

I love everything about food, it's taste (obviously), its smell, it's texture, practically everything.

BUT I have learned that there is one part of food that still doesn't sit well with me, literally.

I have found that as I have learned to eat in a more healthy way, in a way that feels better for my body, I have gotten more sensitive.

Doesn't make sense?

It didn't make sense for the longest time to me either.

Here's the way I think about it.

I used to eat anything I wanted. Since I was very active, it never seemed like a big deal. But once I started studying nutrition and all of the ways that our bodies react to the things we put inside of it, I started to think.

What if, there was a better way for me to eat?

See, my allergies have been just this little annoyance for me. No big deal. Sinuses, same. I'd always be a little warmer than everyone else, so winter was okay for me but sometimes summer could be brutal.

Why do I mention this? I mention it because I honestly feel like all of this manifests itself directly in proportion to the way I eat.

I eat "bad", my allergies, sinus issues, heat problems become blown up out of proportion.

So I started eating more fruits and veggies and wouldn't you know it, I started to feel better. I slept better. I had more energy. My skin cleared itself up and PMS, well that wasn't so much of an issue. Any premenstrual cramps I had disappeared once I decided that milk wasn't doing very much for me. I was happier and healthier and my digestive system ran like a well oiled machine.

BUT and this is a huge but here, all of the benefits that I had stopped at the ones I listed above. I was eating better, but still wasn't where I should be for my body.

Let me make a huge distinction here. I say "My body" specifically because each of us have out own stuff to deal with. My body is different from yours and every one elses on this planet. What may work for me, may not work for you.

There are, however, some universal truths that we can all embrace that will make everyone feel better. Period.

This is where I am taking May.

I eat well but I know I can eat better.

For instance, I've realized that wheat doesn't work for me. My stomach blows up like a Macys Thanksgiving Day parade balloon whenever I eat a "regular" slice of bread, have any sort of pasta and for the most part, baked desserts.


I have learned that I can eat well and even better if I make a few adjustments.

This is what has been working for me so far. I know that this will change as I get older, as the weather changes and as my life situation changes.

So far:

1. Wheat and gluten are no friends of mine.
2. Same goes for milk and most dairy products
3. I still love cheese but I understand that if I want to eat it, I need to deal with the stuffy nose and other consequences afterwards, i.e. it had better be worth it
4. Sugar. Yes I have a sweet tooth, but this needs to be limited to natural sugars, period. My body doesn't like you. My body does like extra dark bitter chocolate.
5. Vegetables are more than just good for you, they are delicious too! Yay kale!
6. Pot liquor! If you don't know what it is, ask or google it. It made my world turn green, in a good way, for a whole day!
7. I love, love, love fruit. Smoothies are the way to go for me, even if they all turn out brown.

There will be plenty more.

My question today is about peanuts and peanut butter. I didn't know that they were or can be classified as a fungus, or react as such. Maybe that's why my tummy protests after some plain peanut butter...

One last word on Gratitude...

As much as I don't want this experiment in gratitude to end, it must because that's just the way things happen. It's been an amazing month and I am really grateful to have been able to share this journey with all of you.

Feel free to post your own reactions to our month of Gratitude. Has it changed anything in your life? Has it changed the way you look at things?

So without further ado, my last day.

Wednesday, April 30th

1. A surprising conversation with an old friend
2. Being where I am, right now
3. 30 whole minutes to myself to just breathe
4. Realizing that maybe peanuts and peanut butter just doesn't work for me
5. Waking up on time and even before my alarm

There you have it. The very last post for the month of April, albeit a few days after...

I'm a busy girl, you know...

As for here, I'm turning May into another experimental month. Perhaps it'll even survive past May.

May is henceforth known as "Experiments in Eating!"