Category: Earlier Blogs
Our neighborhood has a Christmas light contest every year. This afternoon I picked up a map of the winners and rode my bicycle to look at them. It was a beautiful cool sunny day. I rode for almost an hour admiring the decorations and got a good work out. They were incredibly creative.
Tonight we watched one of our favorite Christmas movies, "Little Lord Fauntleroy" starring Ricky Schroder and Alec Guinness. Normally I wouldn't write about a movie, but there was one line that made me think of the BTD.
On his first morning in the castle, Little Lord Fauntleroy was picking at his breakfast. The grandfather says, "The kipper is not to your liking?" Fauntleroy says, "I've never had fish for breakfast before."
We've watched this movie at Christmastime every year for more than 15 years, and I never particularly noticed that line. But when I heard it tonight I thought, "They must be Type Os. Why else would they be eating fish for breakfast?"
I am still not in the habit of eating meat and vegetables for breakfast. About once a week, especially if I am going to go running a little later in the morning, I will pull leftovers from dinner out of the refrigerator for breakfast. More often I will sneak a pinch of meat as I'm fixing lunches. Meat in the morning always makes me feel good, but it is just so non traditional.
I need to keep that mental picture of British aristocracy eating kipper for breakfast.
When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about." So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. Luke 2:15-16
It is much easier to follow the BTD at home than it is in restaurants. However today I found myself eating out twice - a rare occurrence.
Today was the last day of school, and we had a teacher appreciation luncheon at a Mexican restaurant that is famous for its tortillas. I chose a beef fajita salad. It was large and very tasty. The only avoid was a sprinkle of cheese. If I had been ordering from a waiter off of a menu, I would have asked them to hold the cheese. But we ordered as a group, and everyone who ordered fajita salad got it at the same time. I did however make it through the luncheon without a single tortilla.
Tonight our family went to the mall to shop and look at decorations. This is a tradition that goes back to before we had kids. We ate at a cafeteria in the mall. We chose the cafeteria over several other restaurants because we could get vegetables. I got a chopped steak, spinach, and black-eyed peas. On the surface it looks like three beneficials. However, the first bite of the steak told me there was breading of some kind in it. The black-eyed peas were cooked with bacon. The spinach was swimming in margarine.
The tradition of a meal with my family while we admire the mall lights was fun. But I kept thinking that if I had been cooking, I would have had 100% pure beef, black-eyed peas with onion and seasoned salt, and spinach with olive oil.
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."
Jayne sent me a sugar free cranberry sauce recipe, and a recipe for Cranberry Crunch. I fixed the Cranberry Crunch this morning for breakfast, and it was a huge success. My husband, after his second helping said, "I could eat this every morning. When my daughter & I got home from school, I asked my son if he found his breakfast. He looked sheepish and said, "If you had looked at how much I ate, you wouldn't ask." My daughter shrieked, "Don't tell me you ate it all; I only got one serving." This is a winner!
First you prepare the cranberry sauce
1pkg (3 cups) cranberries
1/2 cup honey
1 cup pineapple juice
1-2 tsp. lemon zest,
This is delicious by itself. I'm throwing out my old reduced sugar cranberry sauce recipe and e-mailing my Mom that I'll be bringing cranberries for Christmas dinner.
After you make 1 recipe of Cranberry sauce, here's how you make Cranberry Crunch.
Prepare a crumble mix:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. baking soda.
1 cup oatmeal
1 cup rice flour,
Mix together, toss with 1/2 cup light olive oil.
Put 2/3 of crumble mix in bottom of a 9x9 pan. Take about 2/3 of one recipe of Cranberry Sauce and mix in Â¼ cup chopped pineapple. Spread this on the crumble mix. Top with rest of the crumble. Bake 350 F. for 1/2 hour or until nicely browned.
Jayne will notice that I changed two ingredients. Because I was making this as a breakfast, I wanted to use as many beneficials as possible. If you use it as a dessert, you can do it the original way with spelt flour instead of rice flour and butter instead of light olive oil.
I hadn't had a swim in three weeks. The week of Thanksgiving was short and hectic. The first two weeks after Thanksgiving I was fighting the respiratory virus. The water was cold, but that just keeps me swimming faster.
But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger." Luke 2:10-12
Our son got home from college this evening. I'm not out numbered by blood type anymore! There are two Os and two As. There are two males and two females; two adults and two teenagers. We're all in balance.
I cooked a leg of lamb for my son and me; but I had left over fish for the As. I fixed sweet potato fries, spinach with raisins, black beans, and pasta. I didn't eat the pasta, the As didn't eat the sweet potatoes, but our son ate everything. The grocery store had cherries from Chili on sale today for summertime prices, so we also had fresh cherries.
He is still battling the respiratory virus that the two of us picked up Thanksgiving weekend. I got him started on astragalas, nettles, and Vitamin C.
He had a very successful fall semester, but he is glad to be finished with finals. He's looking forward to sleeping late and visiting with friends. Our daughter has just started her finals, in fact she has her hardest two tomorrow. Her studies cut our dinnertime conversation a little short. In fact she's calling for my help right now - so finals will cut this blog a little short as well.
We are all smiles tonight - so thankful that our family is together under one roof again.
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. Luke 2:8-9
There was an unforgettable comic in Sunday's paper. Stanley Parker is watching television surrounded by a variety of junk food and a very fat cat. His wife, Harriet, is looking at him with raised eyebrows. He says, "The low carb people insist they're right. The low-fat people insist they're right. To keep everyone happy, I just eat everything." It hit so close to the truth.
Before I found the BTD I remember reading studies that "proved" low carb was best. I remember reading studies that "proved" low fat was best. In my own search for truth, I would challenge people who had aligned themselves with one side or the other.
I have a friend who was so sold out to a low fat diet that she had her young children on it. It would frustrate her when I talked about essential fatty acids or that fat was essential to brain development.
To those on low carb diets I would ask, "How can you possibly believe that the artificial imitation low carb foods are better for you than fresh fruit and vegetables the way God made them?"
I wound up a lot like Stanley Parker. I wasn't eating junk food, but I was eating everything natural to try to please everyone's requirements. But my indigestion kept getting worse, and my joints kept aching more.
The day I read Eat Right 4 Your Type the first thing I thought was, "This is the answer to my indigestion." The second thing I thought was, "How about that? The low carb studies are right - for some types. The low fat studies are right - for other types. You just have to know your type."
Stanley and most of the world are still stuck between studies, wondering why they feel bad and gain weight even when they try to follow all the rules. Aren't you glad you know your type, and that you're on this web site instead of in the comics?
While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. Luke 2:6-7
I thought I had been fighting a little cough and cold, but I'm starting to think I've had that long lasting respiratory virus that others on this website have been writing about. Every time I thought I had it conquered, it changed form or moved to a different part of my body. I haven't felt as bad as the people who have been writing. No fever, aches, or fatigue. But it's hung on for more than two weeks!
Over the weekend part of my face got red and sore. Two lymph glands in my neck were swollen and tender. I realized I had a secondary sinus infection. I thought, "If I can't get this under control in 48 hours, I'll be on antibiotics."
I hit it with a three-pronged attack: physical, nutritional, and medical. I bought a neti pot, and began rinsing my sinuses with warm salt water. I've combined elements from anti-bacterial, pulmonary and sinus protocols: astragalas, nettle, bladderwrack, Noni fruit, plus extra C and extra probiotic. I've also taken a hefty dose of guaifenesin.
This morning I seemed to turn a corner, and I've steadily improved all day. The lymph glands are back to normal size, and my face is just a little tender and not swollen at all.
Today I was on a mostly liquid diet until late this afternoon: grapefruit juice, carrot juice, pineapple juice, celery and beet juice, chicken and rice soup. At 5:30 I was suddenly starving. I ate carrots with sesame butter, and then I ate walnuts and prunes. For dinner I had chopped steak, grapefruit, and zucchini.
I've noticed two interesting things. First I've been in close contact with my Type As the whole time, and neither of them has caught it. Second, this is a persistent virus, and all three parts of my treatment (physical, nutritional, and medical) were all needed to overcome it.
I'm going to post this blog, clean up the kitchen, and get a good night's rest.
So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. Luke 2:4-5
Tonight our church had a Christmas dinner for all of the people who work in the children's classes. We got in vans and rode to three different houses. At the first house we had appetizers; at the second, our main course; and at the third, dessert.
I had no idea what the menu would be so I was a little apprehensive about what I would find to eat. Before we left home I had some walnuts and prunes. That would at least take the edge off my hunger.
Almost everything at the appetizer house was made of wheat. The table was beautiful and there must have been 20 - 25 separate items. I had carrot sticks, pineapple, and four almonds.
Things were much better at the main course house. There were generous amounts of four kinds of meat: ham, turkey, roast beef and shrimp. I chose turkey and roast beef. There were two kinds of potatoes, baskets of rolls, green beans and cranberry sauce. I took green beans and cranberry sauce. I suspect that not all of the seasonings were good for Type Os, but away from home I don't worry about the minor ingredients as long as I'm beneficial or neutral on the main ingredients.
The dessert house was a pleasant surprise. Among all of the gorgeous pastries that were total avoids; was a big pumpkin pie. It was a nice ending to a good meal.
We enjoyed seeing the decorations at the homes of our three hosts. Even better was the quick stop we made between the main course and dessert to sing Christmas carols on the front lawn of a nursery teacher who recently had surgery.
In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register. Luke 2:1-3
My daughter's piano teacher has a wonderful philosophy. She wants her students to use their musical abilities to bless and serve others. So she doesn't have formal recital once a year. She has two recitals, one at Christmas and one in the spring, and she has them at nursing homes.
Nursing homes usually have nice baby grand pianos. The residents love attention and they love young people. They are generous with their applause and very forgiving of forgotten notes.
Today was the Christmas recital. As I was listening to the students play, my eyes wandered around the room and rested on a board where the menu for the day was posted. Lunch was a choice of ham and cheese quiche or chicken pasta Alfredo. There is no blood type that would benefit from either dish. Ham is avoid for all, and only Bs and ABs could eat the cheese in the quiche. In the Alfredo dish, the chicken would be avoid for Bs and ABs, wheat an avoid for Os and ABs parmesan cheese an avoid for everyone except Bs.
The dinner menu was no better: country fried steak and a chicken pasta salad. There were hardly any vegetables and no greens on the menu. My mind wandered. Here are elderly people in poor health living in a nicely decorated nursing home, being cared for by an unusually cheerful and friendly staff. It is a well-run facility, and probably has a degreed dietitian on staff. But they are not getting the food their bodies need to maintain (much less improve) their health.
It made me sad. The piano students can bring a little youth and music into their lives. The staff brings food to tempt their aging taste buds. But who will bring food that is right for health?
I notice that my comments at the beginning of the Christmas story have rotated into the archives. If you are joining these December blogs in midstream, we are reading the Christmas story together 1 or 2 verses at a time. I hope they will add to your joy!
When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. Matthew 1:24
While Christmas is a wonderful time of year, it is also a busy time of year. I went Christmas shopping this morning, and was at the school until after 7:00 tonight.
It is tempting when I'm busy to grab something fast to eat. That's dangerous because busy by its very nature involves stress, and stress means my body needs high quality food.
On the way out the door to go shopping, I grabbed a half sweet potato out of the refrigerator. It was a filling snack. I wasn't home long enough to sit down for lunch in spite of what Live Right 4 Your Type recommends. But I ate brisket and collard greens cooked with onions, as I got ready for school.
My mistake of the day was only taking a water bottle to school. I thought we would be coming home about 4:30. The school has some incredible new computer equipment that makes printing the newspaper much better and faster. Next month I'm sure it will be wonderful. But today I was learning how to operate the equipment. I really wished I had brought a snack.
Though we got home late, I resisted a fast unhealthy meal. I ate carrots and sesame butter while I started cooking chicken breasts. For myself I also fixed asparagus and adzuki beans. For the As, I added cauliflower, cucumbers, carrot sticks, and couscous.
All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel" which means, "God with us." Matthew 1:22-23
I didn't really plan to blog about medicine. Yesterday I wrote about taking cough syrup. Today there have been several threads on the Forum about prescriptions. It's made me review my criteria for over-the-counter and prescription medicine. I write with no authority whatever; this is just my opinion. You can do whatever you wish, but you should give it some thought.
I would rather treat illnesses naturally whenever possible. But during my formative years with nutrition, I read two statements that had an impact on my philosophy about medicine. I looked on my bookshelf today but I can't find the exact quotes,. I'll just give you the gist.
One book was about baby and child care. The author was going through a long list of childhood illnesses, writing about natural remedies for each. However when he got to strep throat he wrote, "If your child has strep throat, get to a doctor and get antibiotics. It's too late for Vitamin C." What I gleaned from that statement was that prevention is best, natural remedies are next best; but when you are dealing with serious infections, be thankful for modern medicine. Not too long after reading that, my son had scarlet fever. It took two rounds of antibiotics to get all of the infection out of his blood stream. My dad wrote a letter remembering people he had known who died from scarlet fever in the days before antibiotics.
The second author said that while drugs do have side effects on your body, you must balance that with the fact that pain is a major stress factor on your body also. He used headaches as an example. He said that you reach a point with a headache where the damage done by the ongoing stress is worse than the damage done by taking two pain pills. It is this idea that led me to take cough syrup at night. Clearly the damage done by having a restless night's sleep or sitting up all night in a chair is worse than the side effects of one teaspoon of codeine.
So here are my rules of thumb.
For fever I go to bed and I send my family to bed. The heat of the fever is killing germs; that is a good thing. I only use fever reducers if (1) fever rises above 103 or (2) the fever is accompanied by headaches and muscle aches that are stressful.
I don't use decongestants. They dry me out way too much and make me dream weird dreams. However if my sinuses are so stuffed up that I can't breathe at all, I know I am vulnerable for a secondary infection. I take a mucus thinner and drink tons of water. I would rather take the mucus thinner early than deal with 10 days of antibiotic later.
For pain, rest is best. Calcium/magnesium also helps. But when pain lasts for a long time and becomes a damaging stress itself, I take pain killers. I was in a car accident a few years ago and hurt my shoulder. It wasn't that bad, and I thought I would treat it naturally. It got steadily worse, and after about a month I went to the doctor. My whole body was tense trying to protect the injured shoulder. I had knots in the muscles in my neck and back. It took months for the shoulder injury to completely heal. During that time a low dose of pain killer to relieve the pain in the injured shoulder kept the rest of my body from tensing up and causing even more damage.
There are not right or wrong answers about this issue! Some of you avoid all medicine in all circumstances. Some of you take full advantage of the fact that you live in a day where medicine can spare you from feeling any pain or discomfort. I would encourage you to read a lot and come up with a philosophy that works for you and your family.
Prevention, of course is the best choice. And the best prevention I know about is the Blood Type Diet.
But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." Matthew 1:20-21
I am putting the lights on the Christmas tree tonight. We won't put the ornaments on until our son gets home from college, but we can start enjoying the lights right away.
When I was little I was extremely allergic to fresh cut Christmas trees, so we have always had an artificial tree. Putting the tree up involves moving the living room furniture around so that the tree can be centered in the front window. In the past this has involved a lot of pushing, pulling and sliding on my part. Today I realized when I was half way across the room that I had picked up the brass table lamp and was carrying it. I really am stronger than I was a year ago!
I have been fighting a cold, and I almost won. A few days ago, at the very first sign, I started elderberry drops, extra B vitamins, extra C, and astragalas. I was also interested that Dr. D'Adamo's blog about flu recommended parsnips. Since they are a favorite vegetable, I was only too glad to make a big bowl. I have never felt bad, never even felt tired.
I skipped over the usual early stages of a cold: the scratchy throat and runny nose; and went right to the end, a touch of laryngitis and a cough. I don't have any of the three things the Encyclopedia recommends for a Type O cough. In fact I've never heard of them. I must get to the Health food store tomorrow and see what they have. In the meantime, I confess that when I cough myself awake at night, I take a prescription cough syrup.
Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. Matthew1:19
When I was in college I got into the habit of having a diet Dr. Pepper every afternoon at 3:30. I continued the habit after graduation when I started working. One day, I think I was on a photography assignment away from the office, I skipped my afternoon soda, and I soon had a splitting headache. I realized I was addicted to caffeine.
I also realized I didn't feel as hungry when I had my diet Dr. Pepper. The next time I gained weight, I decided to have a big jug of tea mid-morning and my soda mid-afternoon. That should keep me from being hungry, and I should lose weight. (This was 30 years ago! Before I had any interest in nutrition and long, long before the BTD)
I did lose a little weight, but I was jittery, headachy, and generally wired. I realized my plan had backfired. I decided to cut out all caffeine for a few days and get it completely out of my system. As my body was going through these ridiculous ups and downs, I did notice one thing. When I increased my tea and soda intake my background ear noise got worse. When I stopped drinking coffee, tea and soda, the ear noise went away.
Nerve deafness runs in my family, so that got my attention. I decided to give up all caffeine. So for 30 years, I have not had coffee, tea, or soda except for an occasional decaf coffee and herb tea. When I started the BTD and read that green tea was beneficial, I bought Celestial Seasonings Decaf Mint Green Tea. I have really enjoyed it, and peppermint is also beneficial.
Tonight I was making myself a cup and thinking about Dr. D'Adamo's Bird Flu Blog. It dawned on me for the first time that I might have jumped to the wrong conclusion about caffeine. Coffee is avoid for Type O, so are black tea and commercial sodas. Could it be that the headaches and ear noise were caused by the avoids and not the caffeine? Should I try regular green tea to see if it is more beneficial for me or whether it brings back the ear noise? I'll give it some thought.
This illustrates why, though the anecdotal evidence for the BTD is interesting, the scientific method is what gives the BTD credibility.
This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. Matthew 1:18
My errands took me near a different fish market this weekend. I wanted something that was beneficial for both As and Os. The first fish I picked was trout. The manager said, "You don't want that today. I have more coming in tomorrow." I appreciated the honest advice, but I've been wondering who they sold the trout to!
Next I asked about red snapper. The manager smiled and said, "That's a good choice."
I didn't do anything fancy. I just baked it in the oven, and served it with steamed broccoli, carrots and grapefruit.
I did a poll on how my family ranks the fish I've recently fixed.
My husband says trout first, then snapper, cod and salmon last.
My daughter says salmon first, then trout, snapper, and cod last.
I like salmon best, cod and snapper about the same and trout last.
Christmas decorations are up in the kitchen, den and living room. Tomorrow I decorate the bedrooms. It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!
"I am the Lord's servant," Mary answered. "May it be to me as you have said." Then the angel left her. Luke 1:38
About 4-5 weeks ago, for no reason at all, I began to put on weight. I'm not sure of the timing because at first I didn't pay much attention. I was sure that if I kept eating right it would go away. I seem to remember that it began between my two fall shopping trips and about the time I blogged about increasing my exercise to see if I could start converting fat to muscle again.
I was adding a half-pound every 3-4 days. I knew it couldn't be fat. I doubt I could add fat that quickly no matter what I ate, and I was eating right for a Type O. Truly, I was! I hoped that it might be due to converting fat to muscle, but logically that couldn't account for all of it. It had to be water retention, but why? I tried drinking more water; I tried drinking less. I tried more salt; I tried less. I tried more green tea, and a variety of vitamins and herbs. I wondered if my scale was broken.
I speculated that this could be a hormone event of some sort. I noticed swelling and tenderness that might indicate hormones were the cause. Was I going out of menopause after so effortlessly going through it? Was I (gasp) pregnant at 51?
I blogged at Thanksgiving that I put on a little more than a pound. Instead of going away when I got home, I added another half pound. Now my weight was up 6 pounds, and two of my new pairs of pants were a little snug.
As inexplicably as the weight gain started, it turned around. In a week I have lost 4 pounds. Clearly there are things going on with my metabolism that have nothing to do with what I'm eating. I take no blame for its coming, and I take no credit for its going. It is a mystery.
A lot of people write on the Forum that their weight loss has plateaued. I will read your postings with more compassion in the future. All I can say is stay the course. Keep eating right for your type. Focus on building your health and don't be discouraged. In time, your body will respond.
"How will this be," Mary asked the angel, "Since I am a virgin?"
The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Luke1:34-35
Last night we took a trip back in time to the Victorian era and the days of Charles Dickens. A rural community near us has restored a group of old farm buildings and turned them into clever antique and gift shops. Every December they have a Dickens Christmas Celebration. The shopkeepers dress in Victorian era clothes. Local performers put on outdoor shows. There are even horse drawn carriage rides. It is a delightful event.
On the way we stopped for dinner at Chipotle's. It is easy to get a beneficial blood type meal there. I had a bowl with grilled steak, onions, green peppers, black beans and romaine lettuce. My husband and daughter chose rice, pinto beans, chicken, and other Type A foods.
After we arrived at the village, we realized that we could have eaten at a local restaurant, one of which is a British tea room. We strolled around the village, picking up a couple of Christmas gifts in the shops and enjoying the decorations and the music. We joined a candlelight sing-along around the big outdoor Christmas tree.
Strolling is not adequate Type O exercise. Earlier in the day I had gone to a parking garage to climb stairs. I got a very good work out. I think I will exercise there a lot this winter when it is too cold and drizzly to enjoy running.
You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end. Luke1:31-33
Perhaps I spoke too soon about not having nutrition credibility with my husband's family. The last day we were there I got up early, and had breakfast alone with his Mom. She mentioned having read the negative news report about Vitamin E and said she had thrown her bottle of Vitamin E away. I was thinking that it was a shame the newspaper report scared her because she is Type A, and the Vitamin E is good for As. It's just not good for all blood types. I was trying to decide whether to try to explain that, when she said that she wished she knew what to do about nighttime muscle cramps.
I asked if she took calcium and magnesium. She got out a bottle of grocery store calcium tablets. I said that I thought capsules were easier to absorb than tablets, and that if she took magnesium with the calcium it would help her leg cramps. She seemed very interested. She has never shopped at a health food store, so I said I would buy some calcium/magnesium and mail it to her.
Today I was mailing a box of Christmas gifts to her house. I included a bottle of calcium/magnesium capsules. I'm hoping it will open a door to more conversations. I'm so happy that she asked me.
The angel went to her and said, "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you." Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God." Luke 1:28-30
It's December 1, and this morning we had our first frost. The Christmas season has begun. I love Christmas! I love the music, the gifts, and the food. I love how the spirit of the season makes people more charitable and puts smiles on their faces. I'm hoping that I will start decorating the house this afternoon, but I've had lots of yearbook work to do this week, so decorating may have to wait until Friday.
Kristin wrote a blog about cranberries a few weeks back, and I've been enjoying them in a couple of new ways. My original cranberry sauce recipe called for 3 cups fresh cranberries, 1 cup water and, one cup sugar. This week I made cranberry sauce with the same 3 cups of berries, but Â½ cup water and 1/3 cup sugar. I liked the thicker sauce. My family did not notice the missing sugar. Someone eating a traditional American diet might find the cranberries to be too tart, but since we routinely decrease sugar in recipes, they tasted just fine to us.
I also cut raw cranberries in half and tossed them in a salad. They tasted good with salad greens, and looked quite Christmassy.
Figs are one of my favorite foods. Though I rarely get to eat them fresh, I often have dried figs as a snack. A few weeks ago I saw fruit-only fig preserves at the health food store and couldn't resist buying them. Without bread, it's been hard to know how to use them. Maybe it was hearing the Christmas chorus, "bring us some figgy pudding," but today I tried something radical.
We used to eat a lot of carrot salad. But after starting the BTD it just didn't taste the same without the whipped cream and mayonnaise. I've tried several variations, but hadn't found anything as good as the original. Today I had some grated carrots left over from last night's dinner. On impulse I mixed them with a little olive oil and a spoon of fig preserves. It was delicious - creamy and sweet, but not too sweet.
As much as I love the festive traditions of Christmas it's easy to get caught up in the busy-ness of the season and forget the true significance. I'm going to close each blog in December with a couple of verses from the Christmas story, which is, after all, the real reason for the season.
God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin's name was Mary. Luke 1:26-27
Without question, the best thing about the Thanksgiving holiday was being with our son. He told interesting stories about his classes and hilarious stories about his friends. He also told stories about what he eats.
He doesn't know his roommate's blood type, but says, "He eats like an O." They fix lots of meat in their apartment, especially ground beef. He asked how to cook a roast, and I gave him easy instructions.
He eats one meal a day in the dorm cafeterias. That is where he gets his vegetables. The dorm cafeterias are all-you-can-eat, so he loads up with vegetables and salad. He and his roommate are hesitant to buy and cook vegetables. It's true, that vegetables would mean more preparation and clean up time. But it would be easy to fix sweet potatoes in the microwave.
On mornings when he has 8:00 classes, breakfast is a quick protein shake in the blender. On mornings when he has late classes, he and his roommate fix eggs.
He isn't trying to be BTD compliant. He broadly aims for lots of meat and vegetables and he limits sodas and desserts. He eats way too much wheat for an O, and he still drinks milk. He keeps a variety of microwave dinners in their freezer for fast meals.
However he is eating infinitely healthier than I was at his age! And I'm pleased with his initiative and independence. One night he decided to fix spaghetti. "I fixed way to much," he said. "So we called a couple of friends to come over and join us for dinner."
I wish I could spontaneously do that. But I would feel like I needed to straighten the house and set the table. Plus I would have to check my husband's calendar and my daughter's schedule. By the time I had everything all ready the opportunity would have passed.
I thought the Forum post by suzedgar was honest and very appropriate for this time of year. No matter how hard we try, there is no way to be both a gracious guest and faithful to the BTD in most social settings. And the next 5 weeks will be filled with parties and dinners.
As we drove home from my husband's mom's house, we were listening to a financial tape in the car. The author said that everyone who succeeds financially will have failures along the way. If your failures make you fearful, they prevent you from attaining your goals. Successful people, he said, find ways to turn their failures into advantages.
Can the same logic apply to the Blood Type Diet? Can I turn eating avoids at a party into principles that will help me be healthier? Here are a few ways that I try to think about unavoidable avoids.
First: While I may be in a situation where I have to eat avoids, I do not have to be a glutton. There are almost always beneficial or neutral foods available. I try to eat more of the advantageous foods and only polite tastes of the avoids. At Thanksgiving dinner, I had three slices of turkey but only two bites of dressing.
Second: I find it discouraging to think of never, ever eating old favorite foods. Knowing that sooner or later I will be at a dinner or a party where I will get a taste of once-loved food makes it easier to totally avoid those foods at home. The breaded zucchini strips I ate at my nephew's house have satisfied my desire for onion rings and fried okra and immunized me from ordering them in a restaurant.
Third: I keep fresh in my memory the way I feel after too many avoids. Those memories are perhaps my biggest asset when I am looking at a buffet of holiday food. They give me the strength to say NO when I am tempted to grab comfort food.
By remembering those three principals, it's been a long time since I overindulged on avoids to the extent that I felt really horrible. If you feel sluggish and bloated after Thanksgiving, I have this advice. For a couple of days eat only meat and beneficial vegetables. Sweet potatoes, salad with olive oil, cooked greens, parsnips, black-eyed peas and adzuki beans are all very filling. Raw carrots dipped in nut butter are also satisfying. Stay completely away from anything with grain or sugar until your equilibrium is restored.
Though I was fairly compliant on our holiday trip, when we got home last night I ran for two miles - good for dissipating stress and for loosening muscles tired of sitting in the car. For dinner I fixed baked cod, kale, black-eyed peas, and onions - all highly beneficial. I feel healthy and energetic today. My weight is up a little more than a pound, but I'm confident that it is mostly water and will disappear shortly.
We had two Thanksgiving dinners. Wednesday night we drove out to one nephew's house to see their new baby daughter. Another nephew arranged for an incredible Italian dinner to be catered at the house. We ate on paper plates, watched basketball on TV, and admired the baby. She is just two weeks old. I am a great-aunt again! What a thrill to hold her and have her fall asleep in my arms.
When I think Italian, I think pasta, and certainly there was plenty of that. But there were other choices as well. Salad with beneficial greens was plentiful. Plus there was steamed broccoli and chicken roasted with Italian herbs. My one avoid for the evening was a zucchini dish that I didn't realize contained wheat until I tasted it. It was too delicious, and therefore too late to stop.
Today's traditional turkey feast was sadly small in numbers. My husband's father passed away last spring and was sorely missed. Two family members had the flu and went back to bed after putting in brief appearances. Another nephew had to work.
The turkey was delicious, and neutral for all. I had two bites of cornbread dressing in honor of the day. Other than that I filled my plate with vegetables and fruits.
Come, ye thankful people come.
Raise the song of harvest home.
All is safely gathered in,
Ere the winter storms begin.
God, our maker, doth provide
For our wants to be supplied.
Come to God's on temple come.
Raise the song of harvest home.