Nutrition, Uncategorized

Finger-lickin-nutrition…(Caution: Potty mouth ahead)

Fingerlickinnutrition? What in the heck is that?

Honestly, I’m still trying to figure that one out. I had big dreams of turning this blog into a meal prep, work out central, weight loss support, da-bomb-diggity-one-stop-shop for all of your health needs and so much more. And then…I disappeared for two years, no sorry, FOUR YEARS! I was in no position to try to tell anyone how to change their lives when I was struggling to change my own. I thought that if I wasn’t perfect, then no one would listen to me or care about the ideas I was trying to put out there into the world. Hey, there’s still no guarantee that anyone will read this, but I’m going to write it anyway. And I’m just gonna keep it real with you, I’m still trying to get my shit together.

I dreamed of telling all of you how the girl down there…

Sham Weight 4 - Copy

August 2010. Still hovering around 200 lbs after regaining a few pounds.

Transformed to this girl…

New Years Black - Copy

New Years 2012

 

To this health nut…and maintained…

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2013

But here I am now. This exhausted, anxious dreamer right here with exceptionally wild hair and a slight obsession with fringe…

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2017

I’ve been struggling with weight gain over the past three years and lost focus despite the fact that I know what I need to do to make “healthy living” a lifestyle. I repeat, ‘a lifestyle.’ My excuse? Hell, life just happened. I moved to a new city and got wooed by a lovely “boy”, moved in with that lovely “boy”, started a job and met some wonderful people. Years later I was diagnosed with anxiety and just simply shut down. I felt lost and forgot how to navigate through change, family issues, questionable friendships, doubting my career choices. I lost focus and started to put the weight back on. Now an engaged woman at the awesome age of 34 with belly bloat, Eustachian tube dysfunction (never knew such a thing existed) an achy foot, knee, back and fatigue… I feel like poop. I’m tired of being tired and feeling like poop. And I’m also so damn tired of thinking about food “all of the time.” EAT THIS, NOT THAT! FAT CAUSES CANCER, SUGAR CAUSES CANCER, DAIRY CAUSES DIABETES, FRUIT CAUSES DIABETES. I’ve heard it all and I feel trapped in this world of super saturated food facts and “Google-litis”.

It is absolutely exhausting to try to live within these rules that may or may not even work for you in particular.

So what happens when we flip the script and break the ‘food obsession’ cycle? Or a better question, ‘How’ do we do it?

What if food and exercise weren’t the main ingredients for weight loss or good health in general? What happens when we stop reaching for our iPad and plugging every ailment into a search engine, looking for that magic elixir that will make everything in the universe okay? What happens if we just…stop? If we do something different like go for a walk after a rough day at work instead of heading straight to the fridge the second we enter the door?

Or hey, how about doing nothing at all. At least for the next five minutes. Just chill. Let the madness pass, let the anxiety or whatever is bothering us just complete itself and then and only then do we focus on the real issue at hand (boss was an ass today, boyfriend was an ass today, you were a jerk today…whatever it may be.)

What if we feed our bodies and minds with more positive thoughts, positive habits to override the old, shitty ones? Do things that make us feel sexy and good about ourselves? Become honest with others, honest with ourselves, choose exploration over fear, challenging ourselves to go above and beyond the norm despite everyone’s expectations? What if those are the missing ingredients to happiness and great health and indirectly, weight loss? To look our core issues in the eye and tell them to f** off, we’ve got better shit to do. I’m not going to sit in self-pity and stuff my face with cookies today just because I made a mistake at work, I’m going to Zumba instead.

This is what Fingerlickinnutrition is all about. Positive, mental and spiritual nutrition for the body and soul! Nutrition beyond the plate. Honesty about our struggles and seeking fulfillment, not perfection. With a side of cake, of course (every once in a while)!

I want to explore these ideas and share my journey with you. And you, share your journeys with me.

So raise up your glasses of kombucha or red wine or hell, skip the extra glass of wine and take a bubble bath instead (Did I go to far, wine lovers?)…here’s to a

Healthy Journey!

 

 

 

****Disclaimer: I am not an expert by any means.  All of the information presented are based on my personal experiences and resources that I come across via online sources, word of mouth, and trial and error.  As with anything related to fitness, health, and your safety, consult your doctor before giving it a go.

Wishing you the best and a healthy journey!

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No Dairy, No Gluten, No Peanuts…NO Problem!

Piece of cake….

Well, it was a good journey, but not as sweet as a slice of cake.  (Strawberry cake, please!)  However, surprising to me, giving up dairy, gluten, and peanuts for three weeks wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it would be considering how much I like all three.

Dairy and I have always had a love-hate relationship, but I honestly couldn’t imagine living without it.  Going into this thing with that in mind, I knew that dairy was something I probably shouldn’t eat too much of or eat at all anyway.  A nibble of cheese or scoop of Ben & Jerry’s every once in a while, okay, but anything more than that within a 48-hour span is trouble (Bloating, severe gas mostly).

Gluten?  Who doesn’t love take a chunk of fresh-out-of-the-oven bread and slather it with butter?  Or cheese if you prefer?

And peanuts?  Peanut butter?  Peanut butter cheesecake?  Oh, my goodness, REESE’S?  Come on, life doesn’t get any better than that…Unless eating these things make you sick as a dog.

Some of you may remember my previous post in which I talked about embarking on an Elimination Diet journey in order to get rid of a chronic sinus infection from hell, but unfortunately, after only four days, my motivation tapered off.  Given that I’d gone to every type of doctor on the planet in search of an answer for the cause of my dizziness, body shakes, headaches, and more and after coming up empty handed every single time, I thought I’d take a closer look at my diet (Can you say run-on sentence!).  It seems like there’s more and more research out there linking what we eat to many ailments.

So why was my elimination diet a F-A-I-L?  The program was extremely strict and although I had a general plan of how to tackle my cravings, it wasn’t good enough.  I wasn’t eating enough food and staying hydrated.  I was also lacking the necessary vitamins and minerals needed daily to sustain myself.  Why not take a multivitamin you might ask.  In the many years that I have taken a multivitamin, I can honestly say that I haven’t noticed any difference in my overall health, but maybe that’s just me.  I’m multivitamin resistant?  In my mind, I thought that by eliminating most food groups following the plan, this would make eating a lot simpler and easy with limited choices, but I was living in la-la land.  Folks, I was hun-ga-raaay!  Even with eating these beautiful babies!!!!

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Could you handle not eating the following foods for 3-4 weeks?

NO Citrus

NO Nightshade Vegetables (Potatoes, Peppers, Eggplants, Tomatoes…)

NO Gluten

NO Nuts and Seeds

NO Legumes

NO Soy

NO Dairy

NO Beef, Chicken, Pork, Bacon (I repeat, NO BACON), Eggs,….(Only fish, lamb, turkey, and wild game allowed)

NO Sugar

NO Green or Black Tea

NO Caffeine

NO Chocolate

After the big FAIL, I took a week off and went back online researching the many causes of sinus infections and inflammation, reading testimonies.  I even came across sites that suggested an even more restricted plan than the one I described and needless to say, I couldn’t close those pages fast enough.  No way was I going to do THAT.  By the end of the week, I had basically concluded that the only way to deal with my potential food sensitivity was not to eat at all (Yeah, right!).  Okay, that was bit dramatic, but that’s how I felt.  Eat this, don’t eat that…blah, blahh. AHHHHH!!!!!!!

After calming down, what I decided to do was to try eliminating certain foods in phases, starting with the ones that I knew I wouldn’t have a big problem giving up: Dairy, Gluten, Peanuts.  Something to give me a boost of motivation when the time came for me to give up foods that I knew would be difficult to phase out like sugar and soy.  Sugar, because I’m addict and soy, because it’s everything, including the healthy stuff I try to eat to NOT get sick.

During my gluten-dairy-peanut phase, I wasn’t eating 100% clean and I still found ways to still have junk food while avoiding these groups of food, which I’m sure hindered my progress, but honestly, I was proud of myself for sticking to my ultimate goal.

I cooked more, ate out less, told people “no” when asked out to eat.  By week two, I was still going strong, but I didn’t notice much difference in my symptoms except that they were not as severe.  I still had headaches and fatigue, but not nearly as bad as before and more spaced out so I knew something beautiful was happening with this approach.  Mentally, I could think more clearly, but still felt a bit groggy.  I still had insane popping in my ears during both week 1 and 2 (imagine your ears sounding as if they’re making popcorn), however, I developed a bit of a head cold during week 3.  I thought this was my body’s way of trying to detox since it was mostly mucousy-yellow stuff (TMI) and I wasn’t running a fever and actually started having a little bit of energy.  But the most amazing thing happened.  After the mucous cleared up, so did the popping in my ears.  Six months of constant popping in my ear, poooof, it was gone.  The pressure in my ears somehow equalized and for me, that was enough proof that my horiable diet has finally caught up with me.

I’m making myself sick with food.

Sticking to the modified plan, I started reintroducing foods after week 3 and after most of my cold symptoms had disappeared.  The first food that I introduced was peanuts because I didn’t think it was a major problem or a problem at all really, but I knew it would be the easiest to give up.  I know for a fact that I’m not allergic to nuts or seeds or any food for that matter given I’d been recently tested for allergies.  However, I knew there was a posiblity that I could be sensitive to some foods and sure enough, I was right.  After eating a tablespoon of peanut butter in the morning and a gas station pack of peanuts later in the day, I developed migraine headaches that lasted a few days.  I haven’t had peanuts since then nor have I had any headaches.  Who would’ve thunk it?

A few days later, after my body had enough time to process the peanuts, I re-introduced gluten and waited a few days before finally adding dairy.  I did not have a noticeable reaction to dairy or gluten right away, but I know that these particular foods can take some time to cause problems unless you are allergic to them.  However, over the next week after adding gluten and dairy back, I’ve noticed that on some days my nasal cavity seems a bit inflamed.  I’m almost certain that it’s either dairy or gluten, but it’s slow acting.  Regardless of my discovery, I don’t want to go back to eating dairy or gluten as frequently as I use to.  Less is best.

I’m feeling noticeably better these days, but I’m not feeling 100%.  I’m working out more and drinking more water, taking my vitamins, but I’m still not done with my elimination journey.  I’m thinking of eliminating soy for a few weeks and sugar ( A BIG BIG BIGGY for me).

In the meantime, I’m eating more vegetables and fruit (Stay tuned in for my garden post!!!), more quinoa and brown rice.  And I’m learning that I’m fine without many things like pasta and bread.  It’s not the end of the world.

This is only the beginning.

MY PHOTO JOURNAL

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Healthy Journey!

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Mango Ginger-Berry Smoothie

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(Makes 2 servings)

1 cup fresh mango

1 cup frozen berries (your choice)

1/2 banana

1/2 cup coconut water

1 tsp fresh ginger, grated

1 cup spinach

1-2 tsp honey

Ice (optional)

*Toss all ingredients in blender.  Blend until smooth.  Detox and Enjoy!

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Oat & Fruit Bake

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Oats & Fruit Bake

(Makes 6 Servings)

2 med. Bananas, mashed

2 med. Apples, grated

1/4 cup dried cranberries

1 cp oats

¼ cp walnuts, chopped

¼ cp slivered almonds

½ tsp baking powder

¾ tsp cinnamon

Dash of salt

1 cp almond milk

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp coconut oil

  1. Grease 2-quart baking dish with coconut oil.
  2. Preheat oven at 375 degrees.
  3. Mix all ingredients in medium bowl.  Pour mixture into pan.
  4. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until top is brown.  Let cool 10 minutes before serving.

Recipe adapted from: http://www.annies-eats.com/2011/09/12/baked-oatmeal-with-fruit/

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

One of the easiest ways to get a variety of nutrition in a meal is to just make a smoothie.  I like to add a few veggies to my smoothies because sometimes I find it hard to get into the veggie eating mood.  Usually when I purchase a hand of bananas, I break each finger up into six pieces and freeze them (banana cubes).  Afterwards, I just simply throw them  along with a few other ingredients into my Vitamix and let the blender do the rest of the work.

Today, my blender has been working overtime in order to make this scrumptious and nutritious glass of goodness for an afternoon snack.  Now it’s your turn to try it.  Here’s what you’ll need:

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

(Makes 1 serving)

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (original, vanilla, or chocolate)

3-6 banana cubes (frozen banana pieces)

1 tbsp natural peanut butter

1/2 tsp unsweetened coco powder

1/2 scoop vanilla or chocolate protein powder ( I use UMP)

1 cup spinach (may turn smoothie green)

  1. Add all ingredients into blender.  Blend until mixture is smooth.  Simple and Done!

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