Archives for: October 2008
I am back from a trip to visit my parents. It was so encouraging to see my Dad exercising with his walker again. He was so sick last summer that we all feared he might never get out of the wheel chair again. His mind has regained its pre-infection sharpness, and he thinks like a man 20 years younger than his 90 years. Part of the purpose of my visit was to count out their monthly medication and vitamins. I have introduced several supplements that are beneficial for Type Os (like bioflavonoids), and I’ve quietly stopped supplements that are contra-indicated (like Vitamin E).
My Dad is receptive to the Blood Type Diet, and follows it probably 75% of the time. My Mom doesn’t understand it and is pretty set in the ways that she cooks. She doesn’t want to give up her cake and cookies. I always relax my standards a little when I go to see them. It doesn’t hurt me to indulge in fried okra and onion rings once in a while, or to share a bowl of peppermint ice cream.
However when I get home, I quickly get back on my Type O Diet. At lunchtime today I found broccoli stems in the refrigerator, left from when I had steamed broccoli before my trip. I grated the stems in the food processor, and grated a carrot as well. I added ground turkey, curry powder, turmeric, flax oil, dried pineapple, and dried goji berries. It was a fast tasty crunchy lunch.
Thank you to those who have written DD such encouraging notes. She is doing well. She has gained almost a pound, and is being faithful to take one day a week off from exercise. She has cut the intensity level back for the days that she does cardio on the machines at the university gym. She has gone out to eat twice this week with friends to local restaurants, and was able to enjoy the food and the fellowship without undo stress. She met a girl on campus who went through the same issues last year. She asked, “How did you get through it?” The girl answered, “I had to get a lot closer to the Lord.” DD has been sending me Bible verses that have new meaning for her. Here’s one I thought was amazing. It’s from Psalm 109.
But you, O Sovereign Lord, deal well with me for our name's sake; out of the goodness of your love, deliver me. For I am poor and needy, and my heart is wounded within me. I fade away like an evening shadow; I am shaken off like a locust. My knees give way from fasting; my body is thin and gaunt. Help me, O Lord my God; save me in accordance with your love. Let them know that it is your hand, that you, O Lord, have done it...For he stands at the right hand of the needy one, to save his life from those who condemn him.
My Darling Daughter, who has been too thin for almost a year, has lost five pounds since she went off to school. To recap her situation (which I’ve blogged about before) she does not like her pear shaped body type. In her sophomore and junior years, she put on a few extra pounds. The summer before her senior year she decided to take them off. She got super serious about the Blood Type Diet, and by October she looked great. But a taste of success made her decide to try to get the thin legs she admired in her apple shaped friends. I think the attention to healthy food that she learned from the BTD kept her from being ensnared by a serious eating disorder. She did become compulsive about portion sizes and exercise.
Last spring and summer DD could admit that she needed to regain some of her lost weight, but she didn’t really want to. She had her thin legs, and she wanted to keep them. She would get within a pound of our agreed on target, and then lose a pound or two. She tells me that she didn’t intentionally sabotage the plan, but that she would get scared and exercise more. I had hoped that when she went off to college away from me and around girls eating normally, that she would be responsible for changing her own behavior. That did not happen.
She may be compulsive about exercise, but she is open and honest with me. We talk on the phone every day and now that she has a scale in her room, she reports her weight every morning. Two weeks ago when she hit a new low, I told her that I was worried about the damage she might be doing to her body, and I was worried that there might be some underlying physical cause for the continued weight loss. I said, “I’m making an appointment with our family doctor. If you gain a half a pound this week, I’ll cancel it. So if you can gain weight, this is the time to do it.” She put on 6/10s of a pound, then the day before she was to come home she called crying. She had lost it all.
We were two sad people at the doctor’s office. She has had friends who were diagnosed with anorexia. We both knew what could happen – high fat diets, birth control pills, antidepressants, hospitalization. Our doctor has known our family for ages and delivered DD 19 years ago. He was the right mix of firm and compassionate. He warned her what she was doing to herself. He gave her until Thanksgiving to put on 3 pounds. He wanted her to go in for counseling at school. She did not want to bring in an outside counselor, so I cautiously agreed that she could try to manage this herself and put on ½ pound a week for the next 3 weeks. If she can’t do it, then she will get counseling.
Here is where I need your help. It is hard to put weight on with the Type A diet. We went over all of the recommended portions, and while she is eating on the low end of the range, she is eating according to the diet in all areas except oils and grains. She has increased both of those areas this week. She eats a lot of vegetables, but most higher calorie vegetables seem to be avoid for Type A. She has nuts and fruit for breakfast. She eats 3 ounces of fish or turkey one meal a day and a nut butter sandwich the other meal. She drinks a protein shake every afternoon, and has a power bar made with nuts and fruit mid morning. She feels like she is eating all the time, but she is not gaining.
I would think that she is sabotaging again, except that my husband is experiencing the same thing. When his blood work showed an elevated sugar level, he got scared, then he got rebellious, then he got serious about the BTD Diabetes plan. I don’t have neutral grains in the house any more, and I limit his beneficial grains. He is a thin man to begin with, and he has lost 5 pounds. He eats three good meals a day and snacks on nuts while he watches TV at night.
Type As tell me: Do you continue to lose weight when you follow the diet? What high calorie beneficial foods do you enjoy? What can DD do to gain weight in a healthy way? What can HH eat to keep his blood sugar low, but not lose too much weight?
DD knows I am posting this blog, and she has signed up for her own Forum account so she can read your answers. I hope you can help and encourage her.
My Darling Daughter sent me a recipe which I tried over the weekend. It was a delicious recipe and it brought back memories of my college days.
When I was at Baylor, almost every Friday the cafeteria served “Vegetable Meatloaf”. We students used to laugh about it because it seemed to us that the cafeteria would save all of the leftover peas, carrots and green beans from the week. On Friday we would get meatloaf with little bits of orange and green peaking out of the ground beef. Though we joked about it, most of us admitted that it tasted good. Even I, who at that time of my life ate almost no vegetables at all, liked Vegetable Meatloaf.
Here is the recipe that DD sent:
1 lb ground turkey
2 medium carrots, grated
1 stalk celery, shredded
1 Tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp each of thyme, basil, rosemary, sage, oregano and garlic powder.
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl. Roll the mixture into small meatballs and place on a cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Cook in the oven 10 – 15 minutes.
I served them to my husband with pasta and a sauce. I ate mine plain with a sweet potato. We both had a side salad.
I got to try a new super beneficial food! That is exciting to me! When I first started the BTD, I enjoyed searching the isles of my grocery and health food store looking for beneficial food that I had never tried. It was quite an adventure. Experimenting with the new beneficials took away the sting of not eating old favorite avoids. But gradually, I tried all of the beneficials that were available locally. I sighed – nothing new for months on end.
In South Texas, we have a lot of Hispanic food. It was easy to find guava drinks in the ethnic food isles, but they were loaded with sugar, so I never bought them. I don’t believe that a sugar laden beneficial is really beneficial!
This week I was in the frozen food section of the grocery store buying cherries and blueberries. I saw a new product – Guayaba. Almost the entire label was in Spanish. I don’t speak Spanish, but I read it marginally well. It appeared that this was guava with no sugar added.
After my bad experience eating edamame hulls, I came home and typed the label into Babel Fish Translator. Sure enough this was guava. “Defrost and it tastes like fresh fruit,” the label said. There were several recipes for drinks. Some of them said to strain the drink after processing it in a blender.
I did a little more Internet research and found that it is ok to eat the skin and seeds of guava. The seeds are hard, so some people discard them, however, in doing so you also discard the sweetest part of the fruit, which is the central pulp around the seeds. Interestingly, the peel has the most phytonutrients.
Yesterday I diced two guavas and mixed them with a banana in my breakfast nuts. It was a delicious combination. The guava was tart, but mixed with the banana, it was perfect. The seeds are definitely hard, but no more annoying than blackberry seeds (I know blackberry is Type O avoid, but I remember what they were like from pre-BTD days.).
It is great to have another frozen beneficial fruit just in time for winter months, when fresh fruit is scarce and high priced. I hope there will be enough demand for the grocery store to continue to carry it.
My husband and I are back from spending a weekend with our Darling Daughter. It was Homecoming where she goes to college. All of the activities gave me many opportunities to observe people and their eating habits. It revived an issue I had when the GenoType Diet first came out.
There was an emphasis on how life in the womb impacted the genes of the growing baby. Here is a quote, “The Gatherer's motto — Whoever dies with the most wins — stems from a lack of food in the womb. By making food a top priority, you are able to ensure that you'll always have enough in times of scarcity. But watch out — in our plentiful times you can easily put on excess weight because of overeating.” One example was that a thin mother would produce a baby with thrifty genes – in other words a chubby baby. There was a study of women in a European country in World War II that was used to prove the theory. My interpretation was that the opposite would also have to be true. An over weight mother, consuming more than enough calories, would produce a child without thrifty genes who would grow up thin.
All I can say is that when I observe people, I don’t find that to be true. This weekend as I watched families together I didn’t see skinny parents with fat kids and fat parents with skinny kids. For the most part if mom and dad are thin, the kids are thin. If mom and dad are round, they have round kids.
I can’t say whether this is genetic – in other words whether the tendency to be fat or thin is built into the cells of the children – or whether it is behavioral – thin parents eat a certain way and exercise a certain way and those behaviors are picked up by their offspring. What I do know is that as we walked around campus, I rarely saw a thin mom with an overweight child.
If the idea of thrifty genes was universally true, one place it could be observed today would be in African countries plagued by famine. However, our church has been involved in work with several African orphanages. Some of the orphans come to the US to sing and speak in order to raise funds to keep the orphanages going. These kids were born to poverty stricken, starving mothers. Yet when they are moved to an environment were they get plenty to eat, and even when they visit the US where there is an abundance of food, they are not overweight.
I was pleased with how much good food is available in this college town. We ate one meal at an Arbys – which used to serve nothing but beef for Type Os and nothing at all for Type As. My husband had a remarkably healthy chicken sandwich, and I had a Martha’s Vineyard salad with chicken, apples, and cranberries. Another meal was at a Chinese restaurant where they were happy to adjust the meals for our blood types. Sunday lunch was at a restaurant that had a great variety of fresh vegetables.
There is a grocery store across the street from campus where DD can buy almost everything she needs to supplement the dorm cafeteria food. She says the fresh fruit prices are even better than the prices at home. Now that’s my idea of thrifty.
I was reading Reader’s Digest last night. There is another study out about low fat diets and cancer. The author of the article was clearly frustrated. One study establishes a relationship; the next study says there is no link; then the next study says… There is no end to the studies, and there is no end to the conflicting information.
Those of us on this website know that there can’t be a one size fits all study about cancer and low fat diets because each of the four blood types handles fats in different ways. Wouldn’t it be great to have four studies – one for each Type? Then we might get something that would really be useful.
My husband watches a lot of TV news. I can’t believe how many diets are being promoted on TV. Every time I walk through the living room there is another before and after picture and a high pressure sales pitch.
It must be very frustrating and discouraging to be looking for a diet that works and be faced with so many contradictory choices. It’s why I often say that finding the Blood Type Diet was providential. I was at the right place, at the right time, with a need. Here I am 5 ½ years later fully convinced that this is the only diet that addresses the fact that we are all uniquely created individuals.
On a different subject, I heard a good analogy about the bail out plan. It came from John Cornyn, a Texas Senator. He was on a talk radio program, explaining to a host who was opposed to the plan, why he had voted yes. He said that voting for the bailout bill was like being a fireman and being called to the scene of a fire. When you get there, you realize that the fire is at a derelict’s house. The owner inside is a liar and a thief, a drug pusher and a drunkard. You ask yourself, if you are going to risk your own life to go in and rescue this derelict and save his property. Then you realize that if you don’t, that the fire will spread and burn down the whole neighborhood.
This is not a commercial. I blog about how my family and I go about trying to live the BTD lifestyle. Last time I mentioned that while I wanted to support my local health food stores, I could save half or more if I ordered supplements on the internet. Randee asked how I did this, so I thought I’d share the answer with all of you. I’m not endorsing any particular brands or any particular site.
It started with a comment from one of my readers. She gave me a web address where she ordered her supplements at a discount. At the time I lived in a city and did my vitamin shopping at two health food stores, both of which had frequent sales. I didn’t even look at the website. But after we moved to the country, there were fewer choices and fewer sales. I got curious and opened the link. I was shocked at how much lower the prices were. I spent a couple of hours Googling and comparing.
Not all websites have the same brands – so if you have favorite brands, you may have to check several sites. Not all websites have the same shipping policies – some have free shipping with a minimum purchase, some have a flat shipping fee no matter how much you order, some charge shipping by weight.
I’ve bought from vitacost.com, myvitanet.com, vitaminshoppe.com, and naturamart.com. I usually open several websites and compare. Most of the time I order at Vitacost.
I have never had a problem. All of the products are fresh, so they are not offering me savings by selling bottles that are near the expiration date. It takes 7-10 days for standard shipping to arrive, so I have to plan my purchases ahead.
There are some things that never go on sale. My favorite brand of egg white protein costs the same whether I buy it at a store or order it on the internet. But the savings on Spiruteen, a soy shake mix that DD likes, is significant.
I write this blog with an element of reluctance. Buying supplements on the internet is like shopping at Wal-Mart. I like Wal-Mart savings. I’m in Wal-Mart for something 2-3 times a week. But there are times I regret all of the cute little shops that went out of business because they couldn’t compete. In the same way, I like the money I save when I order supplements on the Internet. However I also like having a local health food store where I can buy manna bread, spelt flour, and nitrite-free beef jerky. I recognize that there is a danger in pulling part of my shopping dollars out of my local community.