Category: Earlier Blogs
I wonder, sometimes, how we come to like some foods and dislike others. There are avoid foods that I naturally dislike. I think, "It's my body telling me that cucumbers are not good for me." But there are also avoid foods that I love, and turn away from only with the greatest degree of self discipline. I don't understand it.
I have noticed, that the longer I eat like an O, the more I seem to like the foods that are beneficial for me.
For most of my life I have not liked onions. I eventually learned to eat cooked onions, and since starting the BTD, grilled onions have become one of my favorite foods. But I still didn't like raw onion. If by mistake I crunched into a bit of chopped onion, I would gag. Many times I simply could not swallow it.
But I am changing. There are two Mexican restaurants near the school where my Darling Daughter and I can get a quick taco salad. One of them serves black beans - that's a big plus. Unfortunately, that restaurant also tops their salad with raw onions. Even if I ask them to leave off the onions, a few pieces always escape.
Last year I picked through the salad, looking for stray onions. A missed piece would greatly distract from my enjoyment of the meal. When school started this year, I noticed a peculiar thing. If I crunched an onion in the salad, nothing happened. I chewed it and swallowed it as if it were a piece of lettuce or carrot. Was I - after 54 years - learning to like raw onion?
Tonight we had a Middle School basketball game and an Elementary Christmas music concert to photograph, so we stayed late at school. DD went to pick up salads, and forgot to tell them no onions. As I began to eat, I was aware that there were lots of onions. But they didn't make me wince or gag. I ate them along with everything else.
I guess my tastes are changing. I can't think of a single Type O beneficial food that I flat out refuse to eat. I have gradually come to like the foods that are beneficial for me - even the ones I had disliked for 40 years.
Now, if I could just get DD to give mushrooms a fair trialâ€¦
My husband and I were at a party the other night and I wound up in a group of young women who were talking about appliances they had received as gifts, but never used. It was interesting to hear them talk. One said she had been given a blender but had never found a use for it. I smiled inside because I use my blender at least once a day to make my daughter's soy shake - twice a day if I'm grinding nuts or seeds.
One said bread machines were a waste of counter space. There was general agreement with that sentiment. I didn't argue, but I thought to myself, if you're baking beneficial bread for Type As, a bread machine is wonderful.
One young mom said that she would like to get rid of every small appliance she owned except for her microwave and her rice steamer. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. She had ripped every appliance that I depend on for cooking, then said her favorite appliance was one that I had mocked as totally unnecessary. So I asked - what's so great about a rice steamer?
It turns out her husband is from Thailand and wants rice at every meal. She says the rice steamer makes perfect rice every time. You put in the right amount of rice and water and turn it on. It turns off when the rice is ready. She says it works for white and brown rice as well as her husband's favorite, jasmine rice. It almost makes me want to put a rice steamer on my Christmas wish list.
My favorite appliance for years has been my food processor. I depend on it for grating and chopping. It saves me hours of work. I bought a Robot Coupe 25 years ago. The motor was still running beautifully when the shredding disk fell apart last summer. I couldn't get replacement parts, so I bought a new Cuisinart.
It is my first experience with a politically correct appliance. There are so many safety features to keep me from shredding or chopping my fingers, that it takes twice as long to prepare food. My old food processor had four basic parts - bowl, lid, blade, pusher. My new processor lid alone has 3 pieces that must be put together in the proper order. If I'm shredding or slicing a lot of items, I can't just pull the pusher out and add more food. No, I have to turn the Cuisinart off, disassemble the lid, add more food, and reassemble the lid.
The old processor was easy to clean. Many times if I had been using it for raw veggies, I just rinsed the parts with hot water and put them in the dish drainer. Nothing is that easy with the new one. There is one part of the lid that slides, but does not come apart. It is particularly difficult to get clean.
I began to sympathize with the appliance-hating young women at the party. Perhaps the simple appliances I received as wedding gifts 31 years ago have all been replaced by unfriendly, politically correct models. Perhaps these young brides are not really frustrated with cooking, but with corporate lawyers who spend so much time making an appliance safe that they forget its purpose.
My Dad, at 89 years of age, deals with achy joints and uncooperative knees. Long before the injury that left him in a wheelchair, he wanted to stay physically active, so he researched natural remedies. He was impressed by the claims made for glucosamine/chondroitin and tried it. It worked, and he has taken it for years. Until his head injury a year ago, he walked a mile or two once or twice a day.
When I started the Blood Type Diet, I read this in Dr. D'Adamo's column. "Chondroitin sulphate is actually comprised of long linked chains of the sugar acetylated galactosamine. You might remember that galactosamine is also the blood type A antigen. Thus, upon hydrolysis (acid breakdown) in the stomach, chondroitin becomes free A-antigen. This would not be to much of a problem in type A or AB, who recognize A antigen as "self," but could be a major problem in types O and B, who recognize A antigen as "non-self." In essence, taking chondroitin sulphate if you are either O or B is the chemical equivalent of giving yourself a bad blood transfusion."
My Dad brushed off this information, because glucosamine/chondroitin had helped his knees so much.
My Dad also deals with itchy skin. It is especially bad at night and when he gets over heated. He has tried various topical creams and oral antihistamines, none of which were particularly successful.
A couple of weeks before Thanksgiving, someone on the Forum quoted the "bad blood transfusion" sound bite, and I began to wonder if the itching might be related to the chondroitin. I bought glucosamine sulfate with MSM and gave it to my Dad. He took it instead of his usual glucosamine/chondroitin on Thursday. Friday at breakfast he said that for the first time in years, he had not itched in the night. He was totally amazed that the results were that fast. I left the glucosamine/MSM with him and brought the glucosamine/chondroitin home to give to my Type A husband.
I got an e-mail from Dad last night. No itching since he stopped the chondroitin.
Listen to Dr. D. Don't argue with him about avoids.
I may take issue with some neutrals. Apples, for instance, really seem to have a good effect on my digestive system. But I don't argue with him about avoids. Other research can tout the praises of oranges, avocado, and cauliflower. I know they are not for me.
Ask yourself this question. If giving up a favorite avoid would improve your quality of life, would it be worth it? My Dad knows the answer. No matter what popular opinion says about chondroitin, he likes sleeping peacefully through the night,
My Mom has not fully recovered from a fall last September. She decided that rather than go through the stress of preparing Thanksgiving dinner, she would order our dinner from a local cafeteria. I would have been happy to have cooked dinner for the family, but we were at her house, and this is what she wanted to do. I'll admit it was sort of nice to relax and visit all morning.
Tonight I've been catching up on BTD mail, and one comment got me to thinking about how Thanksgiving is for Type Os. Overall, it's a good holiday for us. There aren't a lot of beneficials, but then there aren't a lot of avoids either. It's certainly easier to stay compliant at a Thanksgiving dinner than at a fast food restaurant or a football game.
First of all there is a platter of meat, and I can get all I want. Turkey may be neutral, but animal protein energizes Type Os. There are always vegetables at Thanksgiving dinner. Usually we have green beans. Today we had broccoli. There is almost always a veggie tray. Cranberries are another neutral, but if you make them with pineapple juice, they become quite beneficial.
On the negative side is the dressing. It's traditional. It's delicious. If I make it and it's wheat free, I eat a serving. If someone else makes it, I enjoy a spoonful in honor of the day. Gravy I skip. I didn't particularly like turkey gravy even before the BTD.
If Type Os are going to eat a sugary dessert, traditional Thanksgiving pies are a much better choice than ice cream or cake. Pumpkin pie has beneficials. Pecan pie, fruit pies, and mince meat at least have something of nutritional value.
Thanksgiving isn't really about the food or the dinner. It is a day to thank God. To thank Him for the care and protection he showed the original settlers of this country. To thank him for the blessings he has brought into our lives in the past year. A thankful heart is beneficial for all types.
My sister e-mailed last week that she had made chicken curry for a luncheon at her daughter's school. I thought, that must be some chicken curry recipe if a group of Middle Schoolers liked it. So I asked for the recipe. My friend Beth was driving up so see the new house and enjoy a morning of girl talk. I decided to try the chicken curry recipe on her.
Beth is one of the many people I know who are happy that the Blood Type Diet works for me, but not the slightest bit interested in it for themselves. She will listen with polite interest if I want to talk, but is ready to change the subject pretty quickly. She does not know her blood type.
Here is my sister's recipe as she sent it to me:
1 chicken (or 6 chicken breasts) - Cut up and cook in salted water. Save cooking water)
Chop 2 onions and cook in margarine. Sprinkle 3-4 tsp. curry powder over onions.
Add: chicken pieces, garlic powder, 1/2 tsp. ginger, 1/2 tsp. nutmeg, chicken bouillon (3 cups), 1 can tomato paste, salt and pepper.
Simmer all ingredients together. Thicken the juice with cornstarch if necessary. The flavor is best if cooked the day before the meal. Chicken curry can be frozen.
Serve the chicken curry over rice. At the table, each person tops his "mountain" with his personal choice of condiments: pineapple chunks, bananas, peanuts, chopped tomatoes chopped bell pepper orange slices raisins chopped cucumber grated carrots coconut (last ingredient for the "snow" on the mountain top)
This is mostly a Type O friendly recipe. I cooked my onions in ghee. I used 1 Â½ teaspoons of ginger juice. I didn't want to have to add cornstarch for thickening, so I didn't add the full three cups of liquid at first. I added a little at a time as it cooked. I changed the condiment list a little to match what was good for me and what I had on hand in the pantry.
Beth loved it and asked for the recipe. She admitted she was a little suspicious about topping meat and rice with pineapple and walnuts, but agreed in the end that the flavors worked well together. I think the fun of adding toppings is probably what makes the Middle Schoolers like the recipe so much.
I served the left-overs to my family. I added things to the condiments that are beneficial for Type As. The tomato paste is Type A avoid, but I just haven't found a substitute that they like. Dr. D. once said in a column "Generally 70-80% total compliance works well in most people (out of 10 food choices, 7-9 being neutral or beneficial choices)". Even with the tomato paste, Chicken Curry is within the compliant range.
I have a first place ribbon hanging on my refrigerator door tonight. I won first place at our church chili cook off! Well technically HH (my Honorable Husband) won the ribbon, but he couldn't have done it without me.
Last year on the Sunday before Thanksgiving, the church had a turkey dinner. This year the ladies decided to have a chili cook off. The men were to each fix a pot of chili, and the women were to bring corn bread or cake. Now HH does a lot of things well, but cooking is not one of them. So I agreed to make the chili, and let him get the credit - or the blame.
When our children were younger, we used to go camping with three other families. John would make a huge batch of chili and freeze it in milk cartons. The frozen chili kept his ice chest cold during the first part of the trip, and then one night we would heat the chili up over a camp fire and enjoy. I made John's camp chili.
I'll give you John's original recipe, then give a few hints for making it BTD friendly.
2 pounds of ground meat
1 regular can of Ranch Style Beans
1 can of Rotel tomatoes and green chilies
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
2 cans ( 6 oz) of tomato sauce
salt and pepper
For the cook off, I used ground turkey. DD (my Darling Daughter) knew that all the other chili would be made with beef. She wanted something she could eat with a clean conscience. I don't buy tomato sauce any more because of the corn syrup. I substituted tomato paste, and liked the way it made the chili just a tad thicker.
The tomatoes and green chilies were avoids for Type As, as was the green pepper. If I had been making the chili at home, I could have left out the green pepper, but chili just isn't chili without a tomato base. Ranch beans are pinto beans, which are avoid for me. If I had been making chili at home, I could have used black beans or some other neutral bean.
Everybody liked the chili, and we didn't have any leftovers. DD and I laughed when HH was announced as the winner. He let me have the ribbon when we got home.
I started the Blood Type Diet because of heartburn and GERD. When I found out that peppermint was beneficial, I started buying sugar free mints. I quickly learned to love them, and I keep them in my purse all the time. If I am out running errands on a hot day, a mint and a bottle of water keep me refreshed. A mint after a meal tastes like dessert to me.
I originally started buying mints in bulk at the health food store because they were sweetened with Splenda. But the store discontinued the original brand and replaced it with a brand that lists hydrogenated starch as the first ingredient. The new mints also contain artificial colors. That didn't sound too good.
I looked at the grocery store. All of their sugar free mints are sweetened with NutraSweet (Aspartame) That is avoid! The other hard mints at the grocery store are sweetened with corn syrup. That is also avoid!
However the soft peppermints at the grocery store are just sugar, peppermint, and cream of tartar. This seemed like the most natural of the choices, and I've been using them for more than a month.
However, I'm haunted by all of the reading I did during my Health Nut years about the evils of sugar. I feel just a little guilty every time I pop one of the soft peppermints in my mouth. I wonder if I'm better off with a sugar free mint with artificial ingredients or a natural mint with sugar.
Have any of you tried the Spry or Robeir xylitol mints? Do you have a recommendation for a healthy sugar free mint?
My Darling Daughter has wanted to lose a little weight and reshape her body. It is easy for teenage girls to become compulsive about their weight, and I think DD might have fallen into that trap had it not been for the BTD. When she starts drifting in an obsessive direction, we go back to the BTD books and look at beneficial foods, portion sizes, and exercise. Because we have kept our eyes on scientific fact rather than feelings, it has kept her from crossing the line into unhealthy practices, and it has kept me from worrying.
We stopped at the grocery store on the way home from school yesterday and agreed on salmon, pumpkin, and raw veggies for dinner.
I was pleased to find that wild caught salmon was within my budget, and I selected a fillet. When the butcher punched the code into his computer it came up farm raised. I stopped him, and he corrected the code. Just to be sure, I said, "You are selling me wild caught, right?" He was a talkative butcher, and he launched into a long explanation
He says that wild caught fish are not truly wild. Fishermen go out into the ocean and screen off an area so that the salmon cannot escape. They give them additional food and monitor their growth. The salmon are harvested when they reach a certain size, which explains why all of the fish often look identical. Farm raised fish live in man made ponds. Wild caught fish live in man controlled parts of the sea. But neither is truly swimming wild or climbing salmon ladders to get back to inland breeding grounds.
If this is true, it makes me reevaluate my thinking about salmon, especially considering the price difference between farm raised and wild caught. My reason for preferring wild caught was my belief that they ate a more natural diet, lived in less crowded conditions, and were exposed to less impurity in their water. But if the studies compare truly wild fish with farm raised, they are not comparing what is really available in my local market.
When I fix canned pumpkin for myself I use the 100% pure pumpkin rather than the pumpkin pie mix. I warm it with some butter or ghee and a little cinnamon. Because DD is eating pumpkin with me now, I wanted to add less fat. So I mixed in a generous sprinkle of cinnamon and then, instead of the butter I added 1 Â½ teaspoons of ginger juice. The flavor was delightful, and it was beneficial for us both. We just finished eating up the left over pumpkin for lunch.
My husband loves casseroles. His idea of a great dinner is a little meat and a few vegetables mixed with rice or noodles and a savory sauce.
My daughter will not eat casseroles. She doesn't like her food all mixed together. She eats more vegetables than starch, and she prefers her vegetables raw. She wants to dip vegetables in peanut butter or salad dressing. She doesn't want them coated in sauce.
I like the way casseroles taste, but they don't satisfy my Type O needs. There is too much starch and not enough protein. The sauces my husband likes best are wheat based.
The way I have been serving meals is just right for my daughter and me, but lately I can hear my husband sigh when he goes into the kitchen to serve his plate. I know what he's thinking - "Chicken again?" "Fish again?" "Turkey again?" When we eat out he always orders pasta something.
Yesterday I went into the Recipe part of the Website - I love the new format, by the way. Someone has done a lot of work to make it much easier to use - I printed out a couple of recipes that I want to try in the next few days.
I can't promise my husband casseroles. But I do think I have a responsibility not to let his meals become boring.
I wanted to plant bluebonnets in front of the house. They are native, beautiful, drought resistant, and hardy - once they are established. I bought bluebonnet seed and learned that they should be planted between September 1 and December 1.
A large stand of oak trees divides the front of our property. My plan was to plant the bluebonnets on either side of the oaks. The construction workers and torn up the grass in those areas driving their equipment in and out. I just needed to clear out the rocks.
I worked hard to get one side of the yard cleared. I planted half of my seeds. Everything was going well, except my knees were achy. I got out one of my favorite books, "Anybody's Sports Medicine" and read this under overuse injuries in knees. "Squats can be the most harmful exercise of all. At the least a squat subjects the back of your kneecap to about seven and a half times your body weight - about 1,000 pounds per square inch." No wonder my knees hurt. I had been squatting and picking up rocks.
The book recommends rest and exercises to strengthen the muscles around the kneecap. I started those. I also started bromelain, ginger, and glucosamine (without condroitin because I'm Type O) as recommended in the BTD Encyclopedia. I improved slowly. It took about 10 days, but my knees returned to normal.
Yesterday I went out to water the bluebonnets, and they had sprouted! My excitement turned to dismay when I saw that a rain shower had washed some of the seed into an area where the bluebonnets could not survive. I went into high gear, moving the tiny sprouts and building a rock barricade to protect from further erosion. I over did it. My knees are achy again this morning.
I'm back to bromelain, glucosamine, andginger. I'm going to have to sit or kneel rather than squat when I do yard work.
My Type A husband walks for exercise. Because he is easily stressed, I have from time to time thought about nudging him towards a yoga class. My type A daughter twirls. That is good exercise for her now, but I've thought about yoga as an option for her when she graduates from high school. After what I have learned in the past two weeks, I am very glad that I have not pursued yoga for either of them.
I don't disagree with Dr. D'Adamo about many things, but I would strongly urge not only my family members, but any Christian, to stay away from yoga.
I have been listening to a series of interviews with Dave Hunt who wrote a book called "Yoga and the body of Christ; what position should Christians hold?" The double entendre in the title made me smile, but my smile quickly faded.
Yoga is a Hindu religious practice the goal of which is to "yoke" the practitioner to the god of the Hindus through an altered state of consciousness. It has come to the United States as an exercise program, but Hunt makes a convincing case that dabbling in this religion is dangerous.
The statement that first grabbed my attention was this: After a lecture a woman approached Hunt and said that her son used to be involved with illegal drugs, but when he started yoga, he stopped using drugs. She was thankful for yoga. Hunt said he told her that the son was in more danger now than he was before. Drugs chemically induce an altered state of consciousness, which is bad enough. But through yoga and its meditation techniques, you not only experience relaxation, but you open your mind to demonic forces. I find that to be an alarming statement!
The religious aspects of yoga are not promoted in beginner classes. But as a person advances, the mystical side becomes more and more important including repeating mantras (which are really the names of Hindu gods) and seeking spirit guides (which are demonic).
Hunt warns Christians that the word meditation is used quite differently in the Bible and in yoga. Judeo/Christian meditation is thinking and contemplating. When I meditate on the Bible, I actively use my mind to study. Meditation to Hindus is emptying the mind and allowing outside forces to come in and influence it.
Hinduism and Christianity are completely incompatible. The goal of Hinduism is self-realization or becoming a god. That is the very sin that Judeo/Christianity warns against. It is the sin of Adam and Eve -the desire to be in control, to be a god.
If you are a Hindu - I recognize your freedom to worship as you choose. However, if you are a Christian, think prayerfully before you dabble in pagan religious practices. If you have no religious faith, I urge you to fully investigate and compare the hopelessness and escapism of Eastern and New Age religions with the hope, peace and joy of Christianity.
"Say no to harmful, say yes to beneficial." I've been listening to an MP3 from Living on the Edge about developing discipline in my Christian life. When I heard those words I marveled again at how the principals that govern issues of faith also govern issues of health. Here is some of what Chip Ingram had to say about spiritual discipline, and some of my thoughts about how it applies to the Blood Type Diet.
"The really important things," he said, "always get procrastinated because we can't delay gratification. We can't say no to food going in our mouths. We can't say no, so we immediately gratify our senses."
I thought it was interesting that he used food to illustrate what he was trying to say about discipline in prayer and holy living. I immediately identified with the example. The difficulty following the BTD is the urge to put off what I know is the best and yield to the immediate desire to indulge in one of my old favorite foods.
He said that it's part of our culture to think short term. But short term thinking produces stress, rationalization, lying to ourselves, vulnerability to do things we wish we hadn't done and feelings of guilt. If I hadn't told you that those words came from a recording about spiritual discipline, you would have thought that I quoted them from the Forum. Short term thinking about the food we eat creates exactly the same results.
Just Wednesday night I was with a group and snacks were served. There were fruits, carrots, and sour cream coffee cake. I remember my Mom making sour cream coffee cake. It's delicious. I began to rationalize - "I don't want to hurt the feelings of the lady who baked the cake." I lied to myself, "A little wheat/dairy combo won't really hurt." I was becoming vulnerable to what I knew I shouldn't do."
"I need to change. I need to know how to keep priorities," the MP3 continued. "Discipline is never developed as you go. It is always cultivated in advance." Ingram calls this "advanced decision making" "Say no to a quick fix that will feel good right now. Say yes to a hard road that will produce long term benefit."
Is that not the essence of the Blood Type Diet? Say no to avoid foods that I crave so that I can enjoy long term good health and energy.
"Say no to impulses, say yes to lifelong habits."
Fortunately on Wednesday the lifelong habits kicked in and I passed the plate of sour cream coffee cake. Partly I knew that I my stomach would remind me all night that I had done something harmful to my body. Partly I knew that if I ever tried to talk with these people about the Blood Type Diet, they would remember me stuffing my face with cake.
Whether you are new to the BTD or you're an old hand, do some serious advanced decision making. What will you do in a social situation? What will you do in a restaurant? Do not go with the flow or follow your impulses. Set your priorities. Decide now that the long term benefits are more valuable than the immediate gratification.
If you want to know more about how this impacts your spiritual life, Ingram took the principal from 1 Corinthians 9:24-27.
I picked my Darling Daughter up from a 3-day school retreat Friday night. We had to go by the grocery store on the way home to drop yearbook film at the photo lab. I had a short grocery list as well. "What do you want for dinner?" I asked. "I want beneficials," said DD without hesitation.
This year, she explained, the food was even less acceptable for Type As than ever. She had taken a bag of soy protein bars and trail mix in her suitcase. That kept her going for three days. The only thing she ate from the camp cafeteria was salad.
I thought she might be exaggerating just a little, but when she described the menus, I had to agree that she was right. They served breaded & fried chicken strips, macaroni and cheese, green beans with bacon, hot dogs (served with relish or chili), spaghetti & meatballs, greasy garlic bread, canned fruit, and ham & cheese on white bread. Breakfasts were banana nut muffins one day and powdered eggs, biscuits & gravy the next.
We had lots of vegetables and fruit for dinner along with barbequed chicken. The chicken wasn't beneficial, but after 3 days with only soy and nuts for protein, she felt she needed some meat.
I know it's got to be hard to plan food for a group of picky teenagers. But when I look over the menus, there wasn't much that would build health for any Type.
We are beginning to meet people in our neighborhood and in our church. One of our new friends invited us to go to a rally for a local political candidate. The flyer said there would be food. All of the political rallies I've been to have had a buffet. I worked in the yard until late, so I didn't fix dinner. I thought we'd just all munch at the buffet.
As we made our way to the room, my Darling Daughter heard that they were serving box suppers. Oh no! That almost certainly meant a sandwich, chips, and a cookie. "Ten to one they are ham and cheese sandwiches," said DD.
Sure enough as we approached the table we say big deli rolls filled with ham and cheese. This made my husband happy. He loves ham and cheese, but I stopped buying ham even before I knew it was avoid for both As and Os - too much salt and too many chemicals.
Then I heard someone say something about wraps. I made my way down the table and found two kinds of wrap sandwiches. One was made of thin wheat bread. The other was made of spinach. It wasn't made of 100% spinach. There was obviously some wheat to give it shape. But it was a lot less wheat than any of the other choices. The spinach wraps were stuffed with turkey breast.
Surprisingly there were no chips, and my husband was delighted to get both my cookie and DD's. The political speeches were good, and the candidate himself seems to be an honest man with a servant's heart. In a year when most of the politicians don't share my core beliefs, it is a relief to find someone I might actually like voting for.
I fought the lawn and theâ€¦well - it's too early to tell who is going to win.
When the builder finished our house, he graded it in such a way as to divert water around the house and toward a seasonal creek that is behind our lot. He warned us that we needed to get landscaping quickly in place that would prevent erosion from undoing what he had done. Then it rained for two months and we saw a lot of the dirt beside the driveway wash down the hill.
At last we found a landscaper who was oriented toward xeriscaping and using native plants. He brought in rock to create a dry creek bed where the natural drainage was occurring. Then he put in a bridge and stepping stones for access to our front door from the driveway. He hauled in more dirt to put along the driveway. He spread two kinds of grass seed (one is a winter grass, the other is a drought resistant native summer grass), and covered them with erosion preventing netting. I'm to water for 10 minutes every day, and in 14 days I'm supposed to see sprouting grass.
For my part, I am picking up rocks and gravel. I used leftover bricks from the house to line a path from the back door to the driveway. I'm hauling the small gravel to that path, so it won't be muddy in rainy weather. The large rocks I'm hauling to the side of the house, to extend the dry creek bed on down the side of the hill.
As I lift the buckets of rocks, I think about the fact that weight bearing exercise is supposed to increase bone strength. As I wipe sweat from my face, I remember that intense physical exercise is the best kind of exercise for Type Os.
When I get the rocks removed, I want to plant wild flowers. I know this will be a long and hard project. It won't be finished in a year - or even two. I know that in the spring I will have to attack the grass that will certainly want to take over my dry creek bed. I've got weeks of hauling rocks yet to go. I'm taking on the lawn - and I intend to win.
Barbeque is a very popular food in my part of the country. That is a really good thing for Type Os. I had my two favorite barbeque restaurants where I used to live. I could pick up a pound of brisket or turkey on the way home if I was running late for dinner. After we moved I was watching for a good barbeque place close by.
Of the two towns that are near us, the town in the direction of the main highway is bigger and has a lot of restaurants. We found a great barbeque restaurant there, but it is 7 miles away. With gas prices what they are, I hoped to find something closer.
I drive by one barbeque place every day on the way home from work. A few weeks ago when I made a quick trip to look in on my parents, I decided to stop there. I had vegetables in my refrigerator that I could eat with my fingers as I drove. I needed some meat. I ordered a third of a pound of brisket sliced extra lean. If you don't eat brisket, that means that you're asking them to trim off the fat that is on the bottom. Sometimes they charge a little more per pound, but it's worth it.
I got in the car, started on my way, and opened the package. They had not trimmed the fat. It was really messy to eat, especially while I was driving. Not only that, in my 1/3 pound, they had included an end piece of brisket. That is the hard piece that is sliced off first before you start getting good slices. Lots of restaurants shred the end pieces and mix them in with their chopped beef, but there is no way that they would have served me that if I had ordered sliced beef to eat in the restaurant.
Penny wise, pound foolish, I thought as I wiped my hands with a 5th Kleenex. I might have stopped there a couple of times a month. They saved a little money by ripping me off this time, but they lost me forever as a customer.
The town in the other direction is where I go to drop off my recycling. It is smaller, and is very short on restaurants that serve real food. There are a couple of sandwich shops, and a pancake house, but the choices for Type Os are not good. However, on the way to recycle, I noticed a barbeque place that was less than two miles from the house. Hurrah, I thought. I stopped and ordered a pound of brisket, extra lean. I'd have lunch for three days.
When I got home, it was tasty and very lean. However, the next day, I found another end piece hidden at the bottom of the slices. Another restaurant has lost a loyal customer. If they will save a few cents by including a worthless piece of meat in a take out order, where else are they cutting corners in their restaurant? What fillers might be in the side orders to stretch them a little further? Penny wise, pound foolish. I'd never trust them again.
Last night my Honorable Husband wanted to go down to the river for a picnic dinner. It sounded like fun to me, but my daughter had a big science test. She said she would take a quick study break and get back to the books. I got wrapped up in a computer project and suddenly HH said, "If we don't leave soon, it will be too late."
I hadn't even thought about what to pack in the picnic basket. It was easy to fix him a sandwich with beneficial ingredients. I had some cooked spinach, some leftover ground turkey, and a half a can of pumpkin. Spinach and ground turkey is a good combination. I usually add some raisins and nuts, which make it taste really good. But my lunch vegetables had been mostly green, and I wanted to be sure I got in a beneficial orange vegetable before the day was over.
The sun was going down, I dumped the pumpkin on top of the spinach, and tossed some water bottles and some fruit into the basket. Away we went, HH, myself and the dog.
As we ate, the fireflies came out. They are so pretty: like fairies skirting across the grass, or stars shooting across the ground. Fireflies are gone from the city. I'm glad they are still around in the country.
There is a 300 cliff above the river. After we ate, the three of us walked up the road to the top of the cliff. The sunset was fabulous with orange, purple and pink hues.
Maybe you're curious about my dinner. It looked terrible. Anyone expecting attractive or conventional food would be turned off. The texture was something like creamed spinach. I liked that. The tastes of spinach and pumpkin didn't exactly go together, but they weren't bad. I would never serve it or suggest it as a recipe, but I enjoyed it.
It's hard to explain. I obviously don't want to eat anything disgusting. But the immediate taste is becoming less important to me than how I feel after the meal is over. Cheese tastes delicious, but it makes me sleepy. I'll always think that donuts and chips taste wonderful, but they leave me with an upset stomach. Spinach and pumpkin are a little funky, but afterwards I felt contented and calm. Of course, the fireflies and sunset might have had a little to do with that as well.
I hope you won't think badly of me, but there is a microwave in my new house.
I had never wanted a microwave oven. I remember one Christmas when my parents, my husband's parents, and my husband's grandmother all tried to give me a microwave. I said "no." I don't think that I was scared of microwaves, though I did stay away from them when I was pregnant. Nothing scientific on my part, just superstition or over cautiousness.
I learned to cook the old fashioned way, and I'm comfortable with it. What's the point of boiling water in a microwave, when I could be chopping vegetables while water comes to a boil on the stove. Besides I would miss the whistle of the tea kettle. The only time I wished for a microwave was when I didn't plan ahead for dinner, and I thought how nice it would be to thaw something out quickly.
However I pack my husband's lunch every morning before he goes to work. He warms the food up in the microwave at the office, and he's used to it. When we were planning the new house he said, you can arrange the kitchen any way you want, but I would like to have a microwave. So, we got one.
It has an automatic defrost function on it, which I tried once. What with all of the timing and stirring and restarting, I decided it was easier to thaw ground beef or turkey on the stove the way I always have.
However, I do use it for sweet potatoes. There were uncountable times at the old house where I would be 15 minutes away from dinner a meal and realize I had lots of sweet potatoes, but no time to cook them. It's nice to wrap a sweet potato in a paper towel, push one button, set the table, and pull out a perfectly cooked vegetable.
The interesting thing is that sweet potatoes cooked in the oven and sweet potatoes cooked in the microwave don't taste the same. Oven baked sweet potatoes are sweet and gooey, almost like pudding. Sometimes they are so moist that they are messy. Oven baked sweet potatoes remind me more of the texture of a baked Irish potato. They are drier and fluffier. They do not taste quite as sweet, but they are delicious mixed with ghee.
The funny thing is that both are good, and I can't quite make up my mind which I like better. It's sort of like adding a new beneficial vegetable to the list.
I'm going to read the recipe book that came with the microwave oven. I'm sure as time goes on, I'll use it more. However I don't want to get in such a hurried mindset that I impatiently think of cooking in seconds rather than enjoying the process of minutes and quarter hours.
I mentioned a few days ago that I was listening to MP3 radio interviews with Dr. D'Adamo. In one of the shows, they had been discussing the role of diet in inflammation. Dr. D talks with the host about what a shame it is that because of marketing, when most people think of diet, all they think of is weight loss. Because of this most diets, he said, " are not about using diet in a preemptive healing mannerâ€¦Food can be a dynamic healing agent."
I relate to this, because I started the Blood Type Diet as a last resort to GERD that was not responding to either prescription or over-the-counter medications. It turns out that food was causing all of my symptoms, and changing my diet has eliminated all symptoms for more than 4 years.
However, as I read posts on the Forum, I am well aware, that many people try the Blood Type Diet to lose weight. Some are very successful, and shed unwanted pounds without starving themselves as they learn to eat foods that are beneficial for them.
Yet, there are other people who seem to be strictly following the BTD, but are not losing weight. I thought of those people when I read an article in Reader's Digest. (The article called Misdiagnosed was published in October, 2006. It got set aside while we were preparing to move)
The article is about Joyce Dixon. She weighed more than 200 pounds, and had tried for years to lose weight. Her health problems associated with obesity were increasing. Her doctors put her on low fat and low carb diets. When she did not lose weight, they accused her of cheating. This increased her frustration, because she truly was strictly following the diets. She tells of one time when she went on a low calorie liquid diet and lost 40 pounds at first, then began to gain again.
After 15 years of misdiagnosis, an endocrinologist correctly identified Joyce's problem as Cushing's syndrome, a hormonal disorder. They traced the Cushing's to a tumor on her pituitary gland. The tumor was surgically removed. "Joyce's recovery saw swift. The pounds dropped off and stayed off."
If you have come to the Blood Type Diet to lose weight, I believe you are in the right place. Not only should you gradually lose weight, but your overall health should improve, because as Dr. D. says, there is a dynamic relationship between your food and how your entire body works. However if you are faithful to the BTD, avoiding avoids and watching your portion sizes, and you continue to gain weight, go to the library and ask for the October, 2006 Reader's Digest. Don't be afraid to press your doctor for a few more tests to be sure you have not been misdiagnosed.
One of my personal never-to-be-violated Blood Type Diet rules is don't turn down avoid food in public, then sneak it in private. What is the point of turning down the cookies someone offers me at school, or taking the meat out of my hamburger at a restaurant, if I yield to a craving and eat crackers in secret at home. It would be the height of bad manners and hypocrisy!
If I'm going to eat wheat, let me enjoy a piece of pizza with friends. If I'm going to eat dairy, let it be a piece of my Mom's cheese cake at a family reunion. When I get cravings or I'm under so much stress that I must have something extra to eat, there are plenty of beneficials (walnuts, sweet potato chips) or neutrals (rice crackers, almonds, apples) that will work just fine.
I haven't violated that rule in years - until Wednesday night. I don't know why. Wednesday was a really good day. My yearbook students and I had spent 3 hours working with an art director from our publishing company. We had practically designed the whole book. After weeks of delays on landscaping , I finally had an appointment with a company that seems to think like we do. But for some reason, I got up from the table still hungry. When I went back to do the dishes a little later, someone had left an empty bowl of ice cream on the counter. I wanted some, I got some, and I hid it so that no one in the family would see what I was doing.
Why am I confessing this to you? Three reasons.
1. Some of you don't think I ever fail. Wrong!!!
2. Some of you heap guilt on yourselves when you fail. Cut it out. Learn from your mistakes and get back in the fight.
3. I learned something about my Type O self, which might be useful.
Having had an unauthorized dessert on Wednesday, the next night, I wanted one again. "No" I said firmly to myself, and got a piece of fruit. That satisfied me for about 5 minutes, and the craving was back. Before I ate anything else, I stopped and asked myself "What's really going on here?"
I had broken out of my eating pattern. I had reintroduced the flavor of avoids, and the enticement of sugar into my body and mind. I knew that I did not want to spend days inching my way back to normal, and a week dealing with the pounds I had put on. "What," I asked myself, "do I really want?" I knew the answer. Under stress or duress, a Type O wants protein.
I had sliced turkey in the refrigerator. I ate two slices, and I waited. I was prepared to eat turkey all night, if that's what it took, but in about 15 minutes the intensity of the desire for unhealthy food began to fade. Within a half hour I was physically and mentally content.
Profit from my mistake. If you crave a dessert, eat turkey, or beef, or lamb - anything but ice cream.