Archives for: January 2005
What a week this has been! I’ve been fighting some sort of head virus or something. Suffered through my first migraine in over 30 years, kept a very small headache for a week, low fever for 3 days, a leaky eye and a slightly unsettled stomach. Doesn’t sound fun. It wasn’t or hasn’t been.
At this point, I think I’m on the upside and beginning to feel better and somewhat energetic. My fever has been slowly dropping about 1/10th degree per hour this afternoon. My leaky eye has slowed tearing. The upset stomach is gone. I’m actually enjoying the sunlight and the glistening snow I can see thorough my window. I may get dressed, yet, today.
I learned a few years ago that when I am feeling puny, the best thing for me to do is…nothing. I’ve been doing a lot of that the past three days. That and drinking lots of fluids and staying mostly on the BTD, except for my Brown Cow yogurt. I love that yogurt cream on the top and it always settles my stomach (even if I am an 0).
Several people have told me they suffered through this virus and most seemed considerably sicker than I and for much longer time. A couple were even hospitalized. Nonetheless, I don’t ever enjoy being forced to slow down and really get some additional rest. I enjoy keeping busy with all my activities. The past few days my husband has done the ferrying and errand running and cooking and… I guess having to slow down a bit hasn’t been all that bad.
As I get older (hitting 41 next month), I’m becoming more aware of the passing of time and my own mortality. It’s at this time for most men my age that we have the mid life crisis thing and decide we need to buy things to make us feel younger (like Harley motorcycles or a shiny sports car of some sort) I have not succumbed to any of these Marlon Brando/James Dean personifications of male vitality though I did visit a Harley showroom a few months ago just to kick at some ‘hogs’ with a friend of mine of the same age. I looked, sat on them and admired the power of these bikes but it was a fleeting moment. My friend, on the other hand, was deeply affected by the showroom for he decided a week after our cycle visit to tattoo his left upper arm…a bike purchase is surely to follow.
I believe I had my mid life crisis 4 years ago when I decided to buy a guitar (my personal personification of youth) and began learning to play rock classics from my youth on it. All I can say is that the first 6 months of lessons were filled with continuous frustration (I was always very tense around my instructor) and bloody fingers. I was not progressing at a pace I was used too (can’t really quantify it for you...sorry) and almost gave it up. Looking back, these first months with my 6 strings, was like a yellow beacon of light telling me to slow down. Was the pace of my daily existence going too fast or was I continuously thinking of the future too much too really notice the present? I think the later was the cause of the former.
I experienced the same sort of frustration and uneasiness the other night when a friend of mine took me to a tango instruction class. She has been taking tango lessons for some time now and maybe thought I would enjoy it or take to it. I was eager and open minded about it or so I thought. If anyone out there has tangoed, the male is the one who leads the dance and the female follows or anticipates the shift or movement of your forward weight. It is the kind of dance that really makes you listen to the music. It is also a dance that requires you not to get excited…it asks you to slow down (another yellow beacon?) your inner workings. My inner workings were in 4th gear because I was thinking too much of how my dance friend would react…what was she expecting of me this first time? (I think I was more troubled with what I was expecting of myself). I also felt intimated because there were some very good male dancers on the floor). I survived my first lesson and thoroughly enjoyed watching the other dancers as well as my friend dance the tango.
For those of you starting the BTD dance, listen carefully to your body as you start taking avoids out of your diet and introducing more beneficials. When it comes time to eat and deciding what foods to put in your mouth, slow down your thoughts so you can make good conscious decisions as to what to put in your mouth. For those of you who have significant others who have been on the diet for some time, and you have decided to follow the diet, do not think you can master their level of compliance so quickly…give your self time to adjust and set your own pace.
My tango teacher told me something the other night when I worried about my dancing. She said ‘ I would rather you do two steps all night as long as you do them well’. That’s good advice for anyone starting a new discipline.
Customer service karma is with me this week. Doctor's offices are calling my cell phone with happy test results in a prompt manner, and then there is the food industry. It's amazing what a simple smile along with please and thank you can do for you when communicating. Rarely do these things fail me.
These last two days were no exception. On Wednesday afternoon, I came into work learning that down the block, Chipotle was giving out free burritos simply by using their fax-in order form. The company is trying to promote this service to neighboring businesses. Well, I missed the cut-off for the free burritos and had brought my own food (spinach feta cake) to eat later that night anyway. However, the next evening I was hungry and was out of all my Whole Foods rations. I figured that perhaps they'd be willing to extend their offer to another day. Peter, a laid back African tech that I supervise, wasn't there on Wednesday either so he also missed the free grub. I called ahead to see if they'd allow us. The manager at Chipotle, Eric, got on the phone and approved our appeal! I had a wonderful veggie fajita burrito with green peppers, onions, black beans, rice, mild salsa, guacamole, and lettuce. Yum!!!!!! Thank you Eric!! You made my day! If you know this Eric guy, give him a big kiss for me, haha.
Today I had a coupon for 50% off coffee and 2 bucks off pizza at the Loring Coffee House. It's a new spot in my neighborhood where all the community college kids come to study and they also have a nice happy hour wine special. They always have fantastic desserts on hand and wireless web. I ordered a soy latte and a veggie/pesto pizza. I sat down to read all the leftie propaganda free press (City pages, blah blah) and other free periodicals special to MPLS such as the Skyway News.
Five or ten minutes went by. I still did not have my Joe. I went up to the counter and learned that somehow my order was back-up/forgotten/what not and that Mr. and Mrs. Chai drinks who came after me were done first. The cashier apologized and next thing I knew, she brought me a larger sized latte at no additional charge. Being that I was drinking this at 4 pm and don't wish to be up till 4 am tonight tweakin on caffeine, this could be a blessing or a curse, haha.
My pizza was also not done after about fifteen minutes. I went up and asked when it would be ready. The other server said, "about two more minutes." She then came up to me as I was reading, asking if I'd like another coffee since I had been waiting so long. I told her, no, no, no more caffeine, but hey, I'd go for a free dessert if she's offering. So, after a pizza which, really was worth the wait, I also got a free slice of tiramisu. Oh, everything was just heaven! I love this place!
Gosh, if only I could do this for patients and their caregivers when they have to deal with long lines, insurance SNAFUs and unknowing, undertrained, underpaid cashiers who come from the front of the store to help at the register when we're too busy to help them ourselves. Big brother tends to frown upon free samples, unfortunately. Unless we as a pharmacy have a major F-up and give someone the wrong stuff, rarely do I get the chance to let these little pills go out the door unpaid. Instead I just give my sanity away to a chaotic system where people don't seem to get any better despite all the money they pay for their happy drugs and all the fat cats at the top are getting rich by cutting our staff budget and expecting us to perform as if nothing is wrong, or deny that we are breeding unhappy customers by decreasing adequate support service. Is that not enough?
Someday my goal is to undo the Karma I've created for myself from enabling bad health to perpetuate thru dispensing many agents which "turn off the smoke detector but don't put out the fire" and turn more people toward better lifelong habits. Little by little, this is happening for me.
As the Blues Brothers say, "We're on a mission from God."
One of my favorite saints which I just read about in my book last night is Thomas Aquinas. He broke against the grain in the dark ages to combine his steadfast faith in God with his lifelong study of Aristotle's philosophies. I just might have to make him of my patron saints. I really like what this dude is all about so far......it would behoove me to learn more. Hey, it's never too late.
First of all, I feel I need to share an important WARNING. If you use a NordicTrak and have pets loose in your home, PLEASE either enclose them or have someone watch them while the machine is in use.
Muff (our cat) was curious about our NordicTrak when I was using it. She tried to inspect the “skis” and almost got chucked good in the throat because I did not know she was there behind me...my husband saw her and moved her.
Then, a little while later, she came back and was almost very seriously injured when she attempted to stick her paw into the rapidly spinning fly-wheel. Thankfully, she was not seriously hurt…but she didn’t learn either…we now take steps to keep her away from the machine when it is in use.
Now, to the calmer part of my blog entry for the day:
When I came home after work, I found a frantic message on my answering machine. A family that we are friends with has decided to give BTD-ing a try! They already knew that they are all A’s (How lucky can you get? The entire family is one blood type!). So what was the problem?
Basically, they were in what amounted to sticker shock over how much this way of life was going to cost them...especially the supplements they had priced on the NAP portion of this site.
I explained to them that they did not have to make the changes overnight. The supplements are not mandatory if you cannot afford them or just do not wish to buy them. You do not have to buy fresh wild salmon if canned is all you can afford or find. It may not be perfect, but it will be much better than giving up. For that matter, there is no one, not one single person, that I can think of that does this diet 100% one hundred percent of the time.
In several ways they were right. Organic “clean” foods are expensive. Some items on the food lists can be viewed as exotic. But they were wrong in their idea that health food stores are just for the affluent. I told them that not all of their shopping would have to be done at a health food store. I also explained that just because something is for sale in a health food/natural food store does not mean that it is good for you…even if you are not following the BTD.
The other thing they wanted to know was my opinion on their idea to combine BTD-ing with Weight Watchers since the mom wants to lose weight like I am. I told her that, yes, I had tried combining the BTD with other weight loss plans when I had first learned that BTD was not really a weight loss diet plan. I had thought that was possibly the reason that my excess weight hadn’t been coming off as fast as I had wanted it to.
I also told her that yes, there are people that I know of who are combining the BTD with Weight Watchers who could even be examples she could learn from (like fellow blogger Cheryl Hendrix). I also mentioned my fellow AB blogger Amanda Shears who has been combining BTD with the South Beach Diet and that there have been/are people on the Forum that have been asking similar questions.
However, I also told her that while I do respect these people and their right to combine the BTD that I, personally, do not recommend it. Why? To me, it is just simply too much trouble and effort to go to. I do not like to try to keep track of all the rules that I need to stick to for one diet plan much less two and then on top of it all try to make them blend together. That’s too much work for me.
I am also of the opinion that if I already have a custom made Rolls Royce in my garage (the BTD is specifically for my very own personal blood type) then why would I want to spend my time and energy looking into a secondary budget model to have to do maintenance on as well?
Have a great weekend everyone!
Today was very heavily influenced by two of my blog readers: Miss T and Miss D. I could respond to each of them privately, but I would rather thank them both publicly for helping me out with my wine and my mustard greens issues.
There is no one to blame but them for what happened today. For today, I took the advice they shared with me via my reader’s comments. I went to the sunny Mediterranean (mentally, that is).
My first stop was Spain for some wine - sangria specifically, hold the oranges and brandy, light on the sugar, extra lemon, please. The name refers to the color of the wine which is similar to the color of blood ("sangre" means blood in Spanish). Somehow, that just seems rather appropriate for the BTD.
Next, I was off to Italy for Italy is the home of minestrone. Minestrone soup can help just about any vegetable - even mustard greens. Minestrone soup changes from region to region, cook to cook, and from one season to the next. Today, mine was a winter version, which means it had no zucchini, no green beans, and no fresh baby spinach by the handfuls.
Instead, I used bite-sized pieces of equal amounts of onion and celery sautéed in olive oil with lots of chopped fresh garlic, rosemary, dried thyme, and ground sage. Then I added a small can of tomato sauce, a bay leaf, and a quart of vegetable stock. When it came to a boil, I added bite-sized pieces of butternut squash and a bunch of chopped mustard greens. I put a lid on it and then let it simmer until the squash chunks were done.
Pasta, potato chunks, and carrots? No, none of them...I am trying to stay away from them for the time being - that’s what the squash was to replace. Cheese? No...I had already eaten my day’s worth. Beans? No...I’m saving my edamame (soybeans) for the later on in the day. If you could only taste the wonderful blend of the butternut squash and the sage! The colors are beautiful, too. Sunset orange and red contrasted with shades of green.
Did it end there? Nope. There was a beautiful purple eggplant sitting all alone on my kitchen counter. I cut it in half, poked it all over good with a fork, and then baked it at 425*F for about 30 minutes, cooled it down and then made my version of AB compliant caponata (eggplant salad). Most caponata has slices or chunks of eggplant in it. Mine is more the consistency of a spread or a dip like Baba Ganoush.
I had been tempted to make eggplant mozzarella (think compliant eggplant parmigiana in a casserole version), but I wanted something to go with my fish tomorrow morning before I head in to work...cheese is not on my menu for tomorrow. In addition, the casserole tastes best when made with peanut oil. My A son is very allergic to peanut oil so I do not to use it whenever he is around and I cannot air out the house thoroughly before he gets back. Therefore, the caponata sounded like the better choice.
While I was working on the caponata, I got to thinking...jumbo shells stuffed with seasoned tofu, dressed with spaghetti sauce, and sprinkled with cheese didn’t sound bad either...but how to get around the pasta shells...maybe, I could use spaghetti squash nests, fill them with the stuffing, and then add the sauce and cheese instead. If it works, then I could possibly do the same thing with my cottage cheese & spinach stuffed manicotti.
I think that it will work...I had no problem subbing the squash for pasta underneath my lamb sauce from the Crockpot back on Saturday. If the nests don't want to stay together, I could always wash them with a little beaten egg and then set it as a binder by baking them in the oven for a few minutes. Since they'd be pre-warmed as they came out of the oven, they should bake faster to make up for the time lost in forming the nests.
Then, what ever was I going to occupy myself with while using the NordicTrack? Hmmm...Italy was the answer yet again! Decisions had to be made though: Sophia Loren and Clark Gable (hubba-hubba!) in It Started In Naples, Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant in Roman Holiday, or three couples in Three Coins in the Fountain? Loren & Gable won in the end - this time.
A few days ago I wrote a little about introducing people to the BTD and some of their reactions. Yesterday a dear friend that just couldn’t make such changes and give up favorite foods was placed in the Adult Critical Care unit with heart problems. Today they did a procedure (don’t know which) and put her into Primary Care. She should be released from the hospital tomorrow and will return either by flight or a very long drive.
I’ve talked with this friend several times over several months about the BTD. Each time I tried to encourage her to make some of the less drastic additions or eliminations. Well, “Maybe someday,” she would say. Most recently, she didn’t want to make too many changes; after all, she had just given up smoking again because of her asthma.
On the bright side, another friend is beginning to make changes to follow the BTD and see what difference it might make in her diabetes, obesity, and other health issues. She’s tired of not feeling well and is concerned about the stress causing her blood sugar levels to be far higher than normal. Today I talked with her about using vegetable glycerine instead of splenda and some other substitutions she could make. She wants to feel better, knows how much better I feel and look, and is willing to make changes to do just that.
So, some listen and do nothing. Some listen and make changes. I talk to a lot of people in a week. Telling people about the BTD is a passion. Take care. Eat right for your type.
Da, Da, Da,
Another one bites the dust!
Another pharmacist that is. OH Lordy. Yes, what a week. The pharmacist who took my place this fall threw in the towel and went back to floating for now. I thought she'd last longer than me. I thought she'd make it. Nope. Who's next? Don't know. For now, they keep sending floats in until they can fill the full-time salaried void. Perhaps Big Brother might come to learn someday that if we are truly a people business, we need not be so concerned with the bottom line. If employees are unhappy, customers will, in turn, be unhappy and a vicious cycle develops. And when people within an organization are treated like they are dispensible vs. valued for what they are worth, more breakdowns occur. When's it gonna give?
I've come to peace as an individual with what I'm willing to give to a company when I don't get breaks, don't have time to go to the bathroom, don't have the power to put customers in their place when they get disrespectful, don't have the power to tell people that the wait will be longer because we are having staff problems or increased volume. You see, the ideal would be to quit, to find another job completely. This is a big leap. I'm self-knowing enough to know what I'm willing to do in the present moment. And what I've learned is that in the present moment, I'm thankful for what I have. I'm also thankful for the vast exposure to the public in which I can point people away from pharmaceutical quick fixes and toward better health by using herbs and following the Blood Type Diet on the job when they ask for help. And yeah, I'm thankful for the pay. If I didn't have it, it would make following the BTD much more difficult. Not impossible, but more difficult.
Well, speaking of that great food I can afford, after stopping by Jennifer's place on Monday, I ventured out to Whole foods for groceries which I thought would last me through Thursday. Nope, I've eaten almost everything.
Neat fig bar w/almonds and hazelnuts, pineapple, berry mix (strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries), spinach feta cake, risotto cake, quinoa cake (found out after reading ingredients that it contained chickpeas, oops), tofu dish, butternut squash, spinach w/garlic dish, kale w/garlic and sesame. Almost all these things came from the deli, except the first three items.
Everything was divine. Co-workers think I'm crazy. I keep coming in with weird food (weird by Standard American Diet aka SAD standards). I'm crazy but I'm healthy. It's worth the trade-off and this is the part of me that I really don't give a crap what people think anyway. Perhaps the rest of America will catch on someday. Hey, it's like they say:
"If you lead, the leaders will follow." (one of my favorite bumper stickers!)
Blogger Jim and I will most likely be traveling to Arizona by caravan. It should be a fun trip. We had a good chat last night and are very psyched for the conference! Jennifer might join us, too, but she's gotta work some stuff out first. I hope she does!
No other inspiring words today. Just reflecting on a weird but in some ways wonderful week. Many future doors opening on the horizon. Till then, basking in the sunrise of it all.....
Some of you might remember from the earlier discussion board, that I have been taking bioidentical progesterone sublingual tablets for about 7 years. Since I was 14, I suffered from horrible PMS and even worse menstrual cycles. I had very short cycles (17 - 21 days) which consisted of at least 7 days of very heavy bleeding.
I was an extremely active teenager, played on every sports team, worked 2 jobs and continued with a mid 90's average. I was an over achieving teenager who really liked the high adrenaline lifestyle.
I had pretty decent PMS during my 20's, but because I was not married and worked and went to school all the time, I didn't really have any time to sit and take my moods out on anyone. I got married when I turned 30 and within the year had my first son. PMS and crappy cycles roared through my life. I would think about divorcing my husband every month and quite literally have to refrain myself from firing everybody in my clothing factory and my customers and yelling at my son.
Once I stopped breastfeeding, it took an additional 6 months for my cycles to start again and the PMS grew to the point where I literally would lock myself in my office doing accounting so I would not bite heads off. 2 years after the birth of my first son, my husband and I decided to get pregnant again. Nothing happened. I went to the ob/gyn who decided to put me on chlomid which is a drug that makes your ovaries produce eggs. I produced eggs and went on to have 6 pregnancies that all ended in miscarriage after 6-8 weeks. I did some research and thought I may have had a progesterone deficiency and explained it to the ob/gyn. He ignored my thoughts.
I then went to see a very compassionate Naturopath who put me on a detox diet (very close to the O diet) and magnesium and Vit B supplements. After about 4 months, he suggested a vacation and and dose of Chinese Women's tea (which contains progesterone). After 2 weeks at Club Med, a few bottles of wine, some great food and lots of tennis, we returned home pregnant with our second son. Needless to say this pregnancy stuck!!!
When I finished breastfeeding after 14 months, my PMS symptoms returned, but I also started crying and became pretty brittle. I went back to the Ob/Gyn who then told me all about bioidentical progesterone (just think!!!). (One couldn't get progesterone in Canada without a prescription at that time)
He warned me it would take about 1 year until I would normalize. It took me about 2 years as my levels of estrogen were so high, they were in the areas that cause cancer. So now I sit 7 years later, happy, contended and few or no PMS symptoms. (More tomorrow on Estrogen Dominance)
Well, it’s been an interesting week or so since I began changing our pets’ foods from commercial dogs' and cat's foods to Bones And Raw Meat. Thought you might be interested in how it is going (or not).
Cassie and Tucker are still fed mostly commercial dog food with the addition of raw meat or egg. My husband is still having a hard time with this concept, however, I suspect it won’t be too much longer until he is more supportive. Tonight he did give each of them a nice, big, fresh goose egg to go with their dog chow.
The goose egg was fully in its natural state…unbroken. I had been breaking them open before they were fed. Tucker and Cassie each spent a while analyzing this peculiar dinner addition. After a bit, Tucker did manage to get his opened and rapidly ate it. Cassie, on the other hand, looked at hers, licked it, moved it, and couldn’t figure out what to do next. Tucker decided to show her how to open and eat it. She looked a bit puzzled when Tucker didn’t share.
Katie Cat is still refusing to eat any of this “fresh” stuff, but she does give everything a few licks. Now, she only receives a handful of the diet food which she has never liked to eat and has no Ocean Flavored mix added. She’s not starving and I am hopeful that she will eventually start to eat some of the fresh food.
Muppet is doing great. He is really enjoying his chicken and/or ground beef. Although he still begs for some cooked “people” food, he is primarily eating fresh meats. I can see a difference in his activity level! This old, arthritic “pup” has been running throughout the house! He will be 14 years old next week. His eyes seem clearer and his hacking cough (heart cough) has decreased! AND my husband has noticed! That’s why I think he’ll start being more cooperative in feeding Cassie and Tucker more fresh foods, soon.
I’ve had one of those “Eureka” weekends. They’re nice when they come, it’s not that often. It started with a little snowstorm on Saturday which left us with another 15 cm. on the ground, coupled with quite severely cold temperatures, hovering below -20C (not counting the windchill factor which was taking it around -35C – COLD in anyone’s books!). It was enough of a storm to stay in for the day. Since I decided at New Year’s not to watch television for the month of January, part of my day’s entertainment was to visit the TYPEbase4 postings to check which foods were superbeneficial for my blood type. Not that I am worried about cancer or diabetes, but if I can eat to prevent them, that’s a really good idea in a day when both of these diseases are rampant. Also, as a non-secretor, I need to make sure I look after myself a lot better than other people think they should do. It was a good and helpful exercise, with a few surprises thrown in when food items that were listed as neutral were also considered to be superbeneficials. This happened a few times only, of course. I do wonder, in hindsight, if these ratings were typos?
I also noticed, as I went through the food lists, that some of the things I like to eat contained high cholesterol warnings, so it seemed time to revamp my ideas about how I follow the BTD since my readings are too high. That means changing my breakfast and some of my lunches drastically. Hmmm. But I’d lent my BTD books to a friend, except for the ER4YT book. I haven’t looked at it for several years, so it was like reading an entirely new book with new information.
As I flipped through its pages, fairly randomly, I was struck by the personality descriptions for each of the blood types. At one point I had a strong flash that my first husband was a Type A. I have often wondered what it was, he died long before the book was written. Based on his personality, though, today, for the first time, I am very, very certain that he was an A. He was charming when everything was going fine, but had an incredible temper when they didn’t. Type A for sure. I don’t know why it took me so long to catch on.
Together with being a Type A who suffered with asthma since childhood, he was very attached to eating meat every day. So his diet was against him in every possible way, creating enormous emotional stresses that could have been toned down if he’d had any sort of informed help. He also chose the wrong form of physical exercise, which was regular jogging. He would run several miles on most weekends, for example, as well as running through the week on an almost daily basis. I often wondered, as the years went by, why he came in this particular package. Today I can recognize that he had little choice in terms of his explosions, that he was actually a prisoner of his blood type, his food choices, and his exercise program, poor soul. As we all are, to a certain extent. Liberation comes from making sure we are doing the right things to live well and properly (read simply). It IS possible to escape some of the things that appear to be irremedial, but to do it, we must have awareness and dedication.
So what have I had for breakfast lately? So far – oatmeal porridge with currants and goat milk yesterday, and some dry cottage cheese with organic yogurt and a chopped apple this morning. I will have to be really creative now, because if I eat a lot of grains I tend to put weight on, and that’s not a very good idea, either. I don’t know what tomorrow will bring. Hopefully I will be inspired to find at least 3 – 4 different breakfast ideas that can be rotated to avoid boredom or other problems.
Oh yes, the television. It hasn’t been off totally, I have turned it on to see the news. I’ve had a lot of time to do many things beside vegetating in front of the TV, and I’ve also missed a few programs I enjoy. I will enjoy it that much more in February, and hopefully have more discrimination as to how long it should be on, and when to turn it off. The future looks good on all counts!
Best to you all.
Today was warm and wonderful outside so my family and I again went back to the park for another walk around the lake before the rain comes back again. While walking one of the trails, I remembered a smell I have noticed there several times in the past. It is a strange kind of luring moist moss and earthy minerally smell mixed with trees and sand and I’m not sure what else. It is a smell that I have been aware of, and drawn to, since I was a little girl - so little that I had not yet started kindergarten.
Sort of like Spring, but one that I have smelled before at various places in the world and at different times of the year, not just Springtime. I have smelled this smell very distinctly in Germany. I have noticed it here in the Pacific Northwest. I have noticed it in my birthplace of Louisville, Kentucky. I call it the smell of truly being home. A smell that is capable of relaxing me almost immediately. If I just breathe it in deeply, I always feel so much better...but the trick is finding this sometimes elusive aroma. I know that there are breathing exercises that can help relax a person. This is certainly similar, but the result of the combination of the smell and the breathing is much swifter and longer lasting then just the breathing alone.
There is only one other smell that can compete with this one so far as its capacity to relax me/set me at ease. It is the smell of the ocean...even if it is after a horrible storm and the smell is primarily that of whatever was washed up on the beach.
Back to the park. While climbing one of the steeper hills, I was thinking about how some “primitive” people associated eating certain animals with attaining attributes of the animal. I also thought about how at least some (perhaps not all) Native American languages did not have a word for “move” in the sense of moving your family and belongs from one place of living to another...like when we moved from Indiana to California. They could describe moving along migratory routes, but not an actual move without the intention of every returning for more than just a visit.
The closest equivalent word they had meant “die” or “death”. I always thought that it was because due to the lack of communication like we have today. If they lost contact with each other that it meant they thought of it as the equivalent of dying because they may not likely ever see their loved ones ever again. Now, I wonder differently. This is where it all comes back, possibly, to the BTD.
Dr. D has already determined that different blood types need different foods. The most likely migrations and changes in the blood types as people spread across the planet from the fertile crescent for whatever reason...the Tower of Babel, The Great Flood, or whatever you chose to believe the cause was has already been mapped out. In general, people tend to gravitate towards the foods their own blood type should have. There are obviously avoids that none of us want to give up, but, for the most part, if given a choice, we usually like most of our beneficial and neutral foods.
Did those “primitive” peoples I mentioned earlier notice the effects of eating beneficials and neutrals and avoids and just interpret it as best they could - this animal is vigorous and so are we when we eat it so we are becoming like it instead of the more scientific version of this is a beneficial for us? Were they actually more keenly aware of the effects that food was having on them then we are and so they were actually more advanced in BTD and its medicine than we are?
Did those Native Americans know that if they left the area they were most familiar with that they not only would be losing the support of their loved ones because they would no longer be around them, but that the foods they would likely encounter would be unknown to them and therefore hit and miss as to what it would do to them? Would the area even smell right to them any more? Did they know they should remain where they knew they could get food that was generally good for them?
Is that smell that I instinctually recognize as “home” some sort of self preservation mechanism that God has built into each blood type as a way of helping that person to survive by having them prefer to live in an area that will most likely support the foods their blood type requires?
After thinking about it some, I can say that this smell that I always gravitate to is always in an area that has the capacity to support/grow most all of my beneficials except for the tropical items like pineapple and papayas.
I have never ever found that smell on the open grasslands...the very types of areas that my A son much prefers...this strikes me as strange since he is my son...but his A needs are not the same as my AB ones. My husband much prefers the mountains and woodlands that are much drier than the ones I prefer. He likes the beach, but not as much as I do. He likes the plains at times...but not as much as the mountains and woodlands. His O needs are different from both our son and me. Are these coincidences or does BT explain it?
My taste in music (for recreational purposes) is classical European (which is more A, I think, than any other type) and ethnic/folk from areas that are generally predominately B. My A son does not care for the folk stuff. My O likes it occasionally, but not as much as me. I also like the ethnic/folk colors, costumes, dances, and spices that are generally found in cultures where the B type is found more frequently than A. Since I am both A and B is this another coincidence or does BT explain it?
I know that none of this is scientific, but it does make me wonder.
This blog is going to be completely different from any other one I have written thus far. The past two weeks have been pretty hectic for me and I had to work most of the weekend. Frankly, my brain is in neutral right now and I’m hoping that it stays that way for a while. Therefore, you are going to get a “raw” blog...no premeditation or forethought just me typing whatever comes into my AB brain. Hopefully, I will stay on topic (BTD).
Happily, since I’m all caught up with work now, I am looking at the next two days off!!! I am getting kinda bored with what I have been eating lately so I’m going to be figuring out how to fix that...plus my veggies portions have been slipping, again...I wonder why that is? I really do like my veggies and I do know they make me feel much more energetic. If I come up with any new recipes that I think are worth sharing, I promise I will.
This weekend was a rarity: we went out to a restaurant for a meal. I stayed as compliant as possible. I came across two dishes that I had never had before. I liked them so well that I want to try to duplicate them as close as possible and make them 100% compliant. One was an herb-y creamy pesto-ish salad dressing/dip/spread stuff and the other was a broccoli side. I also tried a pinot grigio that I’d never had before and met a new pinot noir...both were nice.
Today, I hope to raze the basil that is growing in my kitchen window. It’s going into the salad dressing experiment and then I am going to replant with fresh seed. I also need to get to deciding what I’m going to be planting this year. The strawberry plants seem to be wintering over just fine. I mostly need to decide which herbs I am going to be planting soon.
In addition to the experimental food, I am also going to be listening to some neglected CD’s, catching up on some reading, enjoying some green tea, and burning my new skinny pillar candle: chocolate covered strawberries scent! It’s chocolate brown on the top half and strawberry colored on the bottom half. If you are needing a new way to reduce stress I highly recommend candles. I use ‘em both at home and at work.
If I have time, I would also like to start playing around some with designing another menu. Specifically: a menu for the BTD’ers dream: a restaurant that is compliant, genuinely feasible (read practical), and affordable both to the owners and the clientele...if it’s ever really going to really happen here in the USA we’ve gotta at least have something to go to the bank with to show them. Workable menus and business plans do not just fall out of the sky.
I guess I had better close this blog because I do realize that I have done enough rampant random blathering on about nothing really and I do not intend to give you a bad case of readers remorse (aka Why did I bother to read that?). I hope you all have a nice week ahead of you.
Friday, January 21, 2005
I was amazed on Tuesday when I measured. I lost 6.5 inches off my body total in the past 2 weeks, 4.5 inches on my waist alone. For those of you who haven’t followed my blogs, I entered into a contest using a workout system (or I should say, “life approach”), called T-Tapp. The website is here:
I’ve started t-tapp many times, but I have always fallen back on my old standards: weight lifting and aerobics classes (step, floor, kickboxing, etc.). I guess the reality of it has been that, after a lifetime of workout out HARD, of exercising for hours at a time, of been exhausted and sore, my mind just wasn’t willing to accept that there was a different and much better way.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with my workout history, a synopsis would go like this: I grew up on a farm training horses and doing all of the farm-type chores that are, in and of themselves, hard physical labor: pitching stalls, hauling 50-lb bales of hay, stacking 50-lb bags of feed, loading saddles and supplies to and from the trailers, etc. I also started weight lifting when I was 13. I was not a particularly athletic child off of a horse. I was somewhat lumbering and was pitiful at anything that required me to be quick on my feet or to run. I had good eye-hand coordination, actually EXCELLENT eye-hand coordination, but most sports required that you run or jump or something along that line and those parts defeated me. Whenever teams were picked, I was picked “last” routinely. Whereas I was the BEST at anything on horseback, I was just plain terrible on the ground. It really was a bad deal for my self-esteem.
Around age 13 we were introduced to weight lifting in PE, using the then “new fangled” Universal equipment (this was the mid-70’s). Here was something at which I could excel! Even though I was a girl, I was very tall, very broad and VERY strong. I took to weight lifting like a fish to water. I loved it. I continued to lift weights into college. I was on a varsity sport in college (the polo team) and as such, we had professional trainers in the varsity gym. This is where I was trained extensively on the new Nautilus equipment and was finally introduced to free weights. The trainers were very precise and very picky about how we were to use the equipment. There was no “lift the weight and drop it” for us. Nope, we had to watch each link of the chains. It was excruciating. I grew unbelievably strong. I bulked up. Unlike most women, because I am a mesomorph, I CAN put on muscle and put it on, I did. My mother, years later, told me that she was afraid that I was taking steroids because I got so bulked up. Nope, my body just responded to the professional training by putting on muscle and getting strong. By my senior year, I could do 10 SLOW repetitions lifting the entire stack of the abduction/adduction machine. I was strong.
For aerobics I would run in the pool. I didn’t like aerobics, and I didn’t like running, but running for an hour in the pool seemed like the best of the choices suggested to me by the trainers, so run I did.
After college, I became a professional polo player and horse trainer. For nearly 10 years I rode between 6-8 horses per day, 6 days per week. I hit millions of polo balls and played tens of thousands of chukkas. After riding each day, I would hit the gym. I would lift weights and, for the first time in my life, I got seriously into aerobics. I was simply shocked at how hard aerobics were. This was the mid-eighties and floor aerobics were the thing. For someone who had always shunned activities that worked my lungs and required coordination, I threw myself into it full force. I liked aerobics because it made me smaller, rather than bigger. After lifting weights for 10 years straight, I was burned out and tired of being so muscular. I was sick of the endless repetitions and sets. After being professionally trained for 4 years, and having the correct form and methods drilled into me, I was unable to simply switch over to lifting for recreation. I realized that I was burned out on weights. I just didn’t like doing it anymore. I threw myself into aerobics instead.
Keep in mind, that I wasn’t just sitting on the horses that I rode each day. I would work the “greenies”, which often meant long hours of repetitive and strength-draining drills. I would take the “made” horses and work with them on “stick-n-ball”, which was hitting the polo ball at all different speeds, angles, and in all kinds of different circumstances, in order to make sure that the horse did exactly what I asked of them, no matter where the ball was, where I was on their back, or where other players on the field were. If I could, I would stick-n-ball with a partner or two, and turn it into a game of “keep away”. This was hard, dirty, exhausting work for me, often done in 80 to 100 degree heat here in south Texas. 4 days per week, I would also do “training” practices, which were chukkas set up to work the horses and teach them. Often I was also in competitive matches during the week. Finally, if I had more than 10 horses at a level ready to sell, I would “pony” several sets, which meant that I would ride one horse while leading 2-4 more. Ponying was simply to keep horses fit, and I would pony the horses at a fast pace for 30 minutes to an hour per set. Riding one horse at a gallop is hard enough. Riding one while leading 2 to 4 others at a gallop was exhausting. It would help me because I could keep more horses fit than I was actually able to sit upon, but it would take a lot out of me.
Of course along with all of this was the never ending walking out to get the horses out of pasture, feeding, cleaning, loading of the barns and trailers, hauling them around, etc. I was in great shape, in other words.
On top of that I was doing 4-6 aerobics classes per week. I started to get obsessed with it all. As the icing on the cake, I was, as I had since college, taking some sort of metabolism enhancers, in the form of diet pills. I had always been big, but I wanted to be thin. The diet pills and the heavy exercise would keep me where I wanted to be. Finally, if I ever DID start to gain weight, I would end up dieting. Dieting, dieting, dieting. It seemed as if it never ended.
Finally, after 10 years in the horse business, I quit. . There are lots of other reasons that I stopped doing it, but the biggest one was that I burned out. I was at the height of my game when I quit, but I don’t regret it at all. I was one of the top women polo players in the world, and one of the best, overall, for my handicap in the United States, but I was getting to the point where I didn’t want to go to the barn. I went from riding 8 horses a day to 6, then 5, then 4. I just couldn’t do it anymore.
To compensate for the lowering of my daily level of exercise (and inevitable weight gain), I obsessed with exercise even more. I began running, which, if you were to see me, was obviously ridiculous. I was never built to run, but running long distances kept me thin. I would run miles and miles. I went from 4 miles a day to 6, then 8, then 10. I would run the 3 miles to the health club, do a couple of step aerobics classes, then run home. I hated it, but I did it anyway. I was thin, so that was all that mattered. I was really thin. It was great. I was also on the verge of a nervous breakdown.
In 1995, I DID in fact, have a breakdown of sorts. It’s funny because I look at modeling photos of myself from that time and I am so thin. It should have been wonderful, but instead it was one of the most difficult times of my life. I was depressed and incapacitated. I didn’t know who I was (after all, what was I, if not a professional polo player?); I didn’t know what to do with my life. I was far too thin for my health, and I was physically exhausted. I took a break from my life and recovered. It took me nearly a year.
Since that time, I have fought an internal battle regarding diet and exercise. I still want to be thin, but I’m unwilling to do what it took me doing in 1995 to get there. I stopped taking diet pills about 4 years ago, and have come to realize what havoc they have brought upon my metabolism. I have kept up a good modicum of exercise, but I am easily burned out. If I start to lift weights, I grow to hate it quickly. If I start doing aerobics classes again, I find myself dreading them. Running is out – I am too heavy and my body won’t tolerate it anymore. Plus, I just don’t want to do it. I find this about much exercise. I just don’t want to do it anymore. Although I want to be healthy, I want to be thin, there is something that just won’t allow me to step up onto the merry-go-round. It is a terrible conflict that lives within me on a daily basis.
Then Teresa Tapp comes along. For several years, a dear friend of mine has been working with T-Tapp and has been telling me that it was something that could really work for me. I was skeptical, but tried it a few times. It was very different from anything else that I had ever done, but I just couldn’t get it through my head that there was an easier, more effective way to get the exercise that I need, and to trim my body. I just had a deep belief that there was no other way to get where I wanted to get, but to suffer.
But then my friend lost 4 sizes in 6 months doing only T-Tapp. She went from a size 18 to a size 10. She didn’t diet (she certainly doesn’t do BTD), and she didn’t change anything in her life except that she did T-tapp regularly. I was shocked. I couldn’t believe the change. I started reading the site – really reading it. I talked to people who had had similar results as my friend. I realized that, like the BTD, there was something different going on here. That, like Dr. D., Teresa Tapp had found a key to health. She had found something different from what was already out there. It wasn’t something repackaged, but something entirely new. I decided to really give it a good try. There was a contest starting on Jan. 4th, and I decided to do it. What did I have to lose?
What I ended up losing was 6.5 inches in 2 weeks. What have I been doing? Well, for the first 4 days, I did T-Tapp to Tempo, which is a 40-minute workout. That’s all I did. After that, I took a couple of days off, then I did 3 of the 40-minute workouts the following week, along with a 15-minute workout and one day of walking at a medium pace for 30 minutes.
That, alone, was what I did to lose the 6+ inches off my body. I was so impressed that I did the 40-minute workout 5 times this past week and added in 3 sets of walking. I’m going to stick with that schedule for the rest of the 6 weeks of the contest. I’ll let you know how it does for me.
In the meantime, I’m convinced that this workout is as different and as important as the BTD for overall health. I’m amazed at how much better I feel, how my posture has improved, and how much more tone I have than 3 weeks ago. All doing a fraction of what I used to do. I don’t find the workouts boring, nor do I feel that I am burning out on them. I’m actually shocked to see the results that I did, as I have not been eating as compliant as I would like. I got on a wheat roll (so to speak) over the holidays, and I am not off of it yet. I’m a lot closer, but it’s not the same as when I only eat wheat occasionally. It’s nice to see that there is an exercise program that is helping my figure, in SPITE of not being as compliant as I would like. I know that there are things that I am not going to give up (Sunday breakfast tacos is one of them – soft, warm flour tortillas filled with scrambled eggs and Mexican cheese. Nope, those are hear to stay), but for the most part, I have cut my wheat consumption down to just a few things here and there. The T-Tapping makes me feel really good, and I know that the wheat makes me feel very bad. I’d rather feel good. I hope that, by the time that I blog again, I am back off of wheat, save for my breakfast tacos on Sunday morning. Along with that goal, I would like to back off starches save for one meal a day. I’m not sure that will work, but I’d like to find something that works on a day-in, day-out basis and works for my life.
So, a long blog is done. I will be measuring myself again in the next week or so, to see if the T-Tapping is still working as well as it did thus far. I would love to be in a true size 14 by the time that the contest is over on March 4. The loss of a full size in 2 months, without obsessing and working myself to death, diet pills or dieting per se, would be better than any other system in my life. To be in a size 12ish in 2 months would be a true miracle. I’ll keep you informed of my progress.
Living in a small community for twenty plus years allows a person to know many people as friends or acquaintances. The grocery stores seem to be the best places to run into and visit with people. Many times the topic of health comes up and I really enjoy telling people about the Blood Type Diet. In fact, I usually write the website information on one of my business cards for them to look up after they get home.
Most people really seem surprised and interested in learning about this “new” concept. Many people swear they couldn’t possibly live without ___ food. Some are intrigued enough that they still plan on checking it out and others are already convinced that food couldn’t make that much difference in their health. They are usually the ones with a cabinet full of prescription medications and great confidence in their doctors.
I find it very interesting that the people I socialize with at the bingo hall are the most unlikely to look into the BTD. Of course, most of those people are sitting in the smoking section puffing away. When they ask what I have done that I look so much healthier, I still tell them about the BTD and my daily elixir. Who knows, someone just might decide to give it a try.
Nonetheless, whenever the opportunity arises, I am delighted to share to good news of following the BTD and the results of doing so. I especially enjoy telling them about the success for my daughter and how her weight, lupus and other medical conditions have improved drastically since she started the diet just over a year ago. Some will listen with an open mind. Some will say that’s great and never give it another thought.
OK, if my family is reading this one, I am going to be the laughing stock once again.
Tonight, after a 10 hour work day, I was feeling a little grody. Days like this, when you failed to shower in the morning because, well, um, OK there are no good excuses. Well, anyway, the oil field I call my scalp and I wanted to go somewhere that I could just sit down in virtual anonymity and enjoy a good meal. On my way to work, I went to Dunn Bros for a cup of Joe. Across the way, there is this place called the Indian Ocean Restaurant. I had NO CLUE what kind of food they served, figuring, well, OK, it's probably Indian. That sounded all right.
So....on my way back home, I decided to give this place a try. OK, it was NOT Indian food. It was Somalian/Middle Eastern/sort of Mediterranean. But mostly Somalian.
This is where the flashback comes into play, where the jokes all began.
Back in the summer of 2002, I stopped by a Somalian restaurant on my way back from work. I ate some goat meat which seemed, oh, I don't know, OK. Never really having had goat meat before I didn't exactly have a baseline to judge it.
Well, the next day I felt like absolut CRAP. Total food poisoning. Went home completely pale. Took some immodium when my gut seemed empty to stop the spasms. Woke up in the middle of the night with a pain in my gut that seemed like, hmmm....could this be an appendicitis?
Went to ER next morning b/c pain was still there, though milder. They went from ruling out appendiciits to suggesting an ovarian cyst and then back to ??? huh???? when I got the ultrasound done and they found NOTHING. They could "FEEL" something upon palpations, but could not locate the source of the pain/lump in any of their tests.
Figured, hey, perhaps it's just food poisoning. Mom and dad got word that I ate goat and just thought, "Oh, that's such an Erika thing to do, eat goat."
Pain still lingered mildly and gut still seemed sensitive. Had a colonoscopy in October of 2002 because this localized PAIn in my lower right GI section was still coming and going. Nope. Nada. Nothing found by scope. Frustrated. Decided on my own that this is probably an IBS thing I'll have to live with. The colonoscopy was so PAINFUL. Despite the fentanyl and midazolam they shot thru my hep lock, I cried the entire time. But I wouldn't let the doc stop until she got to the ileocaecum valve. I wanted to know it wasn't Crohn's! Thank goodness it wasn't...
The best part of the colonoscopy was getting to keep the photos of my colon at the end. Even through my grief and confusion from months of not knowing what was wrong with my body, I was a happy little medical nerd at heart.
OK so that brings us back to today in 2005. My how time flies. Tonight, at the Indian Ocean Restaurant, I again decided to eat GOAT. And the goat was very good. It was served with a little saffrony, jasmine rice. And a side salad w/iceburg lettuce, tomatoes and cukes. No dressing. Nummy dinner!
There was this big TV on the wall and a foreign channel was streaming in sloppily via satellite. Arab songs with overly made-up Middle Eastern divas repeating, "Habibi, blah blah blah balh habibi, habibi, habibi,....blah blah blah blah habibi"
(From what I remember from my undergrad Middle Eastern history class, that's an affectionate word for "my love". Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong about this...)
We'll see how I feel in the next 48 hours. I'm hoping that not all goat is bad goat for my gut. This goat hit the spot!
And speaking of goats, a wonderful book I bought from Lux Eterna (the bookstore at the Basilica) entitled "Good goats." I will tell you more about this book when I'm done reading it. Till next time, my so far happy colon and I wish you a good night and a pleasant remainder of the weekend.
Considering how much meat costs in a regular grocery store, it can become an even bigger concern to the blood type dieter because we are to eat as “clean” as possible. Organic meat is even more expensive than the main stream type. My husband has recently received yet another wage reduction from his employer. My husband is an O. He requires meat on a regular basis. So, I can relate to those of you who want to save money and to those of you on tight budgets.
You probably already know that one way is to buy cheaper, less than terrific cuts of meat. However, you may not know how to make them not tough and nasty. If that is the case, then all you need is an understanding of how heat affects tenderness to make them just as attractive as the more expensive ones.
Heat does two things. You probably already know that it toughens proteins. It does this by making them contract/shrink as they cook. It also tenderizes connective tissue by breaking it down if there is moisture and the temperature is low (meaning you have to cook it a long time). Now that you know this, you can tenderize any tough cut of meat. All you need now to go with your meat, heat, and moisture is a roasting pan with a lid, a stockpot with a lid, or a slowcooker/Crockpot. Herbs and spices help for added flavor, but they are not absolute necessities.
If you use a Crockpot, you don’t even need to add any additional moisture...but it is usually more flavorful if you do. The extra moisture can also make a great sauce to put over an accompaning side dish. If you chose to add something liquid, just be sure not to add more than three cups at most. The meat alone has plenty in it already. Be sure you don't keep lifting the lid to check on how it's coming along. Crockpots lose their heat very rapidly and can take a while to reheat themselves. If you do not add any additional moisture, the juices that do cook out will be much more concentrated in meat flavor. There won’t be as much liquid produced to use to make a sauce or gravy, but it will be much better flavored so you won’t need as much.
Another reason to use a slowcooker is that it saves you time because it can cook for you when you are not even awake or home. My fellow AB’s: waking up to the wonderful aroma of lamb shanks that have been cooking all night in tomato sauce, red wine, Italian herbs, onions, garlic can in NO WAY ever begin to be compared to the aroma of my son’s brewing morning coffee. The lamb wins every time, no contest. Honest. I experienced it yet again this very morning.
Need a way to cook these meats faster? Go back in time and rediscover the pressure cooker. Today’s models are really much improved over the ones that your mother and/or grandmother used. Another faster method is to go ahead and cook your tough meat as if it was a tender cut, but, before you start cooking it, work it over good with a meat mallet or a fork. Then, after you cook it, cut it as thinly as possible across the grain. What’s the grain? If you look closely at a piece of meat, you will see that it has a definite direction in which the tissues prefer to lay. That is the grain and the direction that it goes.
While I’m on the subject of faster cooking methods, if you could use a faster baking time I recommend looking into the possibility of getting yourself a convection oven. Be extra careful when using it when children are around; the exterior of the non-commercial ones can get VERY hot. Also, do not use these ovens to speed up cooking your tough cuts of meat. It will not work.
Back to the tough meats now. If you feel that you have a potentially really tough cut of meat, than you probably should use a marinade before you even start the cooking process. You will want your marinade to be based on an acid of some sort. Some examples are tomato & tomato products (read your labels to check for those sneaky avoids), wine, fresh pineapple juice (not cooked or canned), and citrus juice(s).
Do not use just an acid alone if you intend to marinade the meat for any longer than a couple of hours. Mix it with some sort of oil...using at least a one to one ratio of acid to oil. More oil than acid is preferable. I would suggest mixing other items into your marinade even if you are not planning on marinating your meat for very long - it will give your dish extra flavor!
Yes folks, there is "pow" in them there hills, 22" during the past 2 days. My son had a bad race on Sunday and finished 10th, but he had a terrific race on Wednesday and finished 1st so as a reward (he is on semester break he had the day off) we sent him to the mountains. It took 2 hours to get up the hill (7 km) because there was so much snow but when he got up there, it was perfection...pow pow up to his thighs.
I am taking a ski racing course on Sunday, but I spoke to my coach today and we decided, pending what the other people say, we might do the powder rather than gates. I can't wait, it feels like Christmas!!!!
For Sunday I am thinking a lunch of cold medium rare roast beef, with horseradish, and a pepper salad for the O's and chicken wings and fresh veggies for the A on Sunday. Off to my freezer to see what is lurking there. I bought a half organic cow this summer, so I am hoping I still have a prime rib left, if not one of the other roasts should do the trick!!!!
No better way to enjoy a gorgeous snowy day in Minneapolis than with a great lunch at Sushi Tango. Miso soup, seaweed and cumumber salad. Then finally....TUNA sushi! I had both the oily tuna and the bluefin tuna. And LOTS of green tea. It was memorable to say the least!
There's not much else to report other than I had an interesting day at the University of Minnesota delivering a letter of recommendation to the College of Pharmacy Admissions Office for a technician that works with me. One of the other technicians that I wrote a recommendation for this summer did not get into early admission this fall and was deferred to the regular admission. While there at the office, I also tried my luck at a diplomatic version of begging them to let her in this round. Without her abilities, her drive, her brain, her tact, her support, and everything else she has put into her job as a tech, I would have gone apeshit this summer. I will say it again: apeshit. Pardon me. But it's true.
I don't know how to tell them that without making me, as the recommendation writer, not look like I don't have a grip. Being a pharmacist is a rewarding but tough job and you absolutely need good support staff to help you do your job. If you don't, you are miserable, especially in the retail business. I hope they understand that in the real world (vs. the academic world of grades and booksmarts, which she also has as well), being able to work under pressure and juggle chaos with grace are essential duties for both pharmacists and technicians. Not everyone has those skills. She has them and then some. I have no reservations or ego conflicts when I say that this girl is smarter than me. If I got through pharmacy school, she will DEFINITELY get through pharmacy school and with flying colors.
Well, I'm praying for her. Feel free to join me in this prayer. Elana, this is what you want and you deserve this oppportunity.
Anyway, about the campus. It was kind of weird being there after my brief but full-of-valuable-learning-experiences employment at the hospital a couple of years ago. I don't miss the hospital. All those nasty anti-bacterial chemicals in the air. Too sterile. No sunlight. But I do miss teaching at the U (as a TA). I would love to go back to that again. Perhaps next fall I will find out if they have any openings.
Teaching was fun and I miss it. It's the publishing part that scares me about doing it full-time (that and not being out of the real world makes people very idealistic in their approaches toward practice). What about the publishing scares me? Obviously I love to write. But I write with my right brain. I get "paper anxiety" when forced to do something as contructive, organized, and "right-brain inhibiting" as technical writing. When I successfully combat this fear, I may be able to re-enter the "publish or perish" world of academia. Till then, community pharmacy works just fine for me, thank you.
What a week! The temperatures have moderated! Right now it is 50-60 degrees warmer than it was day before yesterday AND it is still below freezing. The roads are apt to be very slick as the ice becomes more slippery as the temperature rises. When it goes above freezing, it’s like driving on a wet ice cube.
My computer got a worm or something a month or so ago which caused some minor to major problems depending on what I wanted to do. This week it has been reformatted and I’m attempting to retrieve lost materials. I also moved it into my studio so it will be easier to access while I’m making jewelry and need to develop patterns or want a break.
Maybe it is the increasing daylight (we are now up to 7 hours a day) but, I have been so hungry this past week. Normally I don’t or rarely snack. This week I’m craving sweets! That is really unusual for me. Unfortunately I am giving in to those cravings. Eating protein hasn’t helped to alleviate the cravings either. It is really frustrating. Other than eating an excess of sweets, I’m still doing fairly well in compliance with the BTD.
The cat still won’t eat anything fresh. Muppet will eat some but still prefers cooked foods. My husband conveniently “forgets” to give the outside dogs the fresh food I have for them. Trying to switch their diets has become quite an adventure. Who or what will win out in the end is yet to be determined.
Many of us need to lose some extra body fat. For that reason alone, I am asked from time to time about the BTD. Threads asking for tips on how to speed up the process of weight loss came up from time to time before the Forums in Heidi Merritt’s “On the Diet” column. Now, it appears from time to time over on the Forums. Therefore, today’s blog is about what I have learned about weight loss thus far. Maybe it will help to speed up your own progress or someone you are trying to help.
I closed my last blog talking about how I had started to try to incorporate the blood type recommendations for portions and to lose weight. I didn’t do too well with the veggies, but I did feel better. Not much difference on the scale...it just wiggled a little back and forth...which I found infuriating. Huh. Then, I thought, maybe, I’ll add the exercise part, too.
The scale said I had shed an entire 5 pounds in one week! The weight never came back! Moreover, I felt wonderful! I even actually had soooo much energy out of no where that had I been a child, I would have been called “hyper”! Can you imagine a hyperactive 280-pound (127.01 kilos), 37 year old woman who rewrote protest songs from the 1960s (please read yesterday’s blog if you don’t understand this song part)? And live with her? My husband and teenage son had to do more than imagine it. Are you jealous now that you don't live with me?
Now, can you explain WHY I didn’t continue with that plan? There was one reason. I still hadn’t really "gotten" it. I thought that it was just a fluke of some sort. And, I didn’t really have the time to fix all those veggies anyway, and, and, and, and. So, I didn’t lose any more weight for a while and wondered why. Quick as a rusty steel trap wasn’t I?
I did realize that the proportions had helped. Like the majority of the world, I really didn’t/don't just while away the day lounging on my chaise trying to amuse myself while bossing around the household servants. This is when I invented that food & exercise sheet I blogged about back on day one.
One day, while on a house-hunting trip far from our home, my husband and I were sitting in a restaurant. I was not eavesdropping, but I could very easily hear the two ladies who where having lunch behind us talking. One of them said that she was going to get a big salad. Her friend reminded her that she had just had a huge salad the day before for lunch. Then she asked her friend if she ever tired of having them. The woman’s reply was no. She said that every time she ate vegetables that she felt so much better that it was as if her body was thanking her for eating them and so she ate them as much as possible at every opportunity.
Did I make the connection? Well, it did make me go “hmmm....” mentally. But it was the middle of winter. I had a new full-time job and a part-time home based business that was dying on its feet. We were going to be moving, etc., etc., etc. So, it escaped me. I have concluded since, that the time was just not right yet, for whatever reason.
I did find that as Spring arrived that I started to lose weight again. I had heard that it was easier to lose weight in Spring and Summer than in the Fall and Winter. However, I had never really experienced this before. I also had never gone completely through all of Lent - Ash Wednesday through Easter - without a sinus infection. One that required antibiotics for weeks in order to shake it. Well, that Spring, I was completely sinus trouble free! I can also report that I was sick only once that year. However, I am digressing.
That Summer, Dr. D’s Health Library series started being actually published. I pre-ordered mine at my local bookstore. One of the books was about diabetes. I did not have diabetes myself, but it was on my side of the family and so I had been looking into the issue.
As it turned out, I was most likely what is called pre-diabetic. I had been termed that back when I had been seeing a MD instead of a ND. I started to follow the food lists for diabetes prevention and like magic it all fell into place. My excess fat continues to steadily diminish as long as I put into practice what it took me over a year's worth of learning curve to teach myself. Just within the last month or so, I have found tidbits that I missed in the pre-pregnancy part of the ERFYBaby book. No, I don’t plan to get pregnant at going on 40. I was wondering what I should have done had I known about the BTD back when I was in my 20’s and pregnant with my son.
Back then, there were no bloggers or BTD Forum. There was someone trained in BTD principles in my area that I did seek out and paid for advice from. In all honesty, it didn’t help me much. It turned out that we AB’s are so rare that I was told that it would be a hit and miss process on their part due to their lack of experience and real understanding of the AB types weaknesses and requirements. I give the person credit for informing me of their lack of knowledge up front.
The answers I needed to find for my body may or may not be the same as the ones you need. Your body may also need more or less time to heal itself to the point that it can begin to shed its excess fat. Please take full advantage of all the resources you have available to you to live this life style. You will be both investing in yourself and in your future...no matter what others may say or think or both. It will not necessarily extend your life, but I am convinced beyond any doubt whatsoever that it will vastly improve the quality of if.
I'd like to start this blog with a tribute to Ben Franklin. He is featured in my Urban Almanac (his b-day was the 17th) and also my Left-handers Page-a-Day calendar. Good Ben had some wise words that I'd like to share with you...
"God heals, and the doctors take the fee"
"The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results"
"There was never a good war or a bad peace"
"If your riches are yours, why don't you take them with you to t'other world?"
"The cat in gloves catches no mice"
"Where there is Marriage without Love, there will be Love without Marriage"
"There is no little enemy"
My favorite (timeless):
"Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."
Well, Jennifer (other MPLS blogger) and I finally met up for dinner again last night at a hip Eat St restaurant called Azia (pronounced like Asia)! It was a lot of fun....
We started out with some appetizers. We were very naughty, getting unhealthy stuff that filled us up quite quickly. Avocado-filled deep-fried veggie rolls with a dipping sauce and also cranberry won tons. Hot pink cream cheese oozed out of these also deep-fried treats. If blogger Jim were there, the third member of our MN blogger trinity, he would have put an end to this non-sense immediately! Haha...
It was good to have a girls night out. There are things you can talk about with girlfriends that you just can't talk about with guys. It was a much needed night for me especially.
Jennifer then got some sort of vegetarian curry dish w/jasmine rice. The presentation was beautiful...
I got a cranberry duck sort of dish w/duck (obviously), asparagus, rice noodles, cranberries, bell peppers, and sundried tomatoes. I've gotta say....as a foodie (or wannabe foodie depending on your perspective), sundried tomatoes are SO out! I'd like to say I've moved past them and so has the MPLS foodie environment. But then they showed up on my plate. I'm eating the left-overs as we speak.
The duck meat was very good. By far the very best duck I've ever eaten was in New Orleans. There I was at a pharmacy convention in December of 2001. Most of the other students had boarded the plane and gone home. There I was in this absolutely beautiful hote all alone for the night. Man, what was the name? (I'll fill the one in later). There was this Asian restaurant (fill this one in later, too). I ordered room service from the restaurant and ate the most amazing duck dish. Later that year, two months later, I came back to that same restaurant with my rotation roommate and a Cajun boy I met at a Paul Oakenfold party. I was having the time of my life that month. I did horribly on my rotation gradewise, but I didn't care. I had left my heart on the bayou. Part of it will always be there.
Other memories flood me when I think of New Orleans. That December week four other pharmacy students crammed into the room with me. Kevin and Miya slept in one bed (platonically). Yoon and I shared a bed and Mike took the floor. He was the last one in the dibs for the room and that was the deal. I had a horrible cold and laryngitis throughout the entire trip. This was the last time I really spent getting to know Miya before she was diagnosed with leukemia after graduation and died one year later. I'll never forget her honesty when we were primping up for interviews and other general networking and schmoozing activities. At the time, I was dying my hair blond. She had no problem telling me that the color didn't match my skin tone. I couldn't have agreed more and was happy to hear someone say that. Needless to say, I've been dye-free for over two years. It's just not worth the money, time, and chemical damage and exposure to dye hair that is beautiful on its own. At the time, however, I was going thru a mild identity crisis.
Anyway, enough nostalgia for one blog. Back to the food. Today I worked when I wasn't scheduled to work. The pharmacist who took my place full time has been getting sick lately. She's not sure why and neither are the docs. The only reasonable explanation is work-stress. I honestly thought she'd be able to handle it better than I did (which is why I had no problem stepping down), but it appears she is also human, too. I ordered all the techs and me some delivery burritos from burrito loco. Of course, trying to make up for the breadiness of last night's appetizers, I made mine a "skinless" burrito, basically a salad w/lettuce, pico, pinto beans, chicken, onions, bell peppers, cilantro (YUM!), and guacamole. It ended my work day nicely.
I finished all of Sex and the City. Yes, I have watched all six seasons. I laughed, I cried, I wanted to pack up and move to New York and live like Carrie Bradshaw. Nah........I like writing this column better.
As an O nonnie, and seemingly limited food choices, I am very susceptible to “overeating” foods. For the past year I have been eating a mixture of almonds and hazelnuts on a daily basis, I grab a handful while I am cooking supper or when I want a crunchy food. The inevitable has happened, I have a severe case of eczema that popped up over the past few weeks that doesn’t seem to want to go away. It started in my hairline but has now spread over my forehead and down to my temples. Quite attractive if I do say so myself.
I thought at first, it was the occasional slip of dairy, but I have cut dairy down to zero thinking the asthma and eczema were related, the asthma is gone and the eczema is worse. I then thought it was my hair and face products, but again, I stopped using all products on the weekends and it became worse. Today, as I was leaving the house, I grabbed a handful of nuts on an empty stomach, within 2 minutes my ears got really hot and red, I also got a hot rash on my face and my eczema went crazy. Voila, the final clue to the puzzle!! I haven’t had another handful since this morning and finally the rash is subsiding. Oh, the trials and tribulations of being an O nonnie!!! Is there anything else out there that is crunchy, portable and gets rid of the growlies?
I really need to figure out how to properly rotate foods in and out of my diet to stop this cycle of reactions to my overeaten foods. Maybe a new use for my paperweight Palm Pilot.....
One of the things that I recommend to people, after they are fairly accustomed to their new BTD way of life, is that they keep what I call an “A-ha!” diary. Although the BTD has food and exercise as two of its major component parts, it’s not a food and/or exercise diary. I recommend it for every blood type and regardless of the reason(s) that a person has decided to try this lifestyle. This journal is not necessarily meant to be written in every day or every week. There have been months that I will go without a single entry.
The reason for this journal is that sometimes, as you make your way through this life style, you will discover things about yourself and/or your own body that you didn’t know. Sometimes, you will read something that makes sense to you and you will keep on going about your life. Then, out the blue, you will have it “click” in your head. The head knowledge will have become heart knowledge. By heart knowledge I mean that it will have become more than just facts to you. It will have become truly understood. Another example is this: Sometimes you will notice something and you’re not sure why. Later, it will become crystal clear. These are all examples of “A-ha!” moments to record in your journal.
Many times, I have found that these moments of information come when I don’t have time to really sit down and think them through. If I force myself to pause long enough to record the important bits, it can make it easier to come back to later on when I have more time or inclination. It also frequently happens that I have a whole bunch of ‘em all right together and there are so many all at once (or nearly at once) that it helps me to sort them all out. Just the act of writing them out helps to solidify them in my mind so that I do not have to relearn them - perhaps refine, but not forget completely and need to relearn entirely.
If you try this, I think that when you look back over your entries at the end of a year's worth of time that you will be amazed. Not only by how much you learned that you didn’t even know you didn’t know, but also by how much you’ll realize you still don’t know. This is not to imply that anyone is stupid. It is just that there is so much to learn and very little to actually make us notice and appreciate our own progress.
If you would like to try this and have never kept a journal before and would like some idea of where to begin, here’s what mine is like. It’s 9”x 6” (22,86 cm x 15,24 cm), soft cover, and spiral bound. It has 100 pages. I keep it in my bedroom with a pen stuck in the wire that binds it so I always have something to write with.
Today’s blog is being entered at the 11th hour because I had much that I wanted to say. It did not help that everything that I wanted to say was bits & pieces of unrelated stuff. I was trying to think of how to mesh them all together. Then, all my ideas were completely forgotten when I went over to the bulletin boards/forum section of this site. There, I found that my son has joined the group!
As a parent, this makes me feel really good. Back in February of ’03 (when I first started following the BTD), I tried it first on myself. It worked so well, I told my husband about it in greater detail...only to be told that he was already aware that he shouldn’t be eating wheat. He said it had recently started to give him bad heartburn every time he ate it. We both started BTD-ing. My husband and were both so pleased with our results that we decided that our teenage son should be following it, too.
That was MUCH easier said than done. He was completely against the idea for every conceivable reason and excuse imaginable. To make matters worse, I had lost much of my credibility with him about exactly what correct eating habits were. In the past I had tried many other eating styles and at the time been convinced that those others were right. Several months later, I always found out that I had been wrong.
I still remember him standing in our kitchen one day. He was telling me that this diet was just another of my crazy ideas on nutrition and health. I emphatically told him that no, it most definitely was not and that he could wait until the cows came home, but I was not going to change my mind on this issue. I also told him it was not just my idea, but that it had been recommended by our ND to help me lose the extra fat I was lugging.
Hearing that our ND had actually recommended it, instead of it just being something that I had stumbled across, made him take a little bit of a notice, but he still was not cooperative. An entire year passed - with him doing everything conceivable to dodge this lifestyle and way of eating. I was exasperated and frustrated...and not just with him. I still feel like kicking myself from time to time when I recall how his tiny A body reacted as a baby the very first time I fed him beef. It was horrible. He screamed, yelled, and cried for HOURS. I had no clue why. Now, I knew why. Now, I felt I had the task of getting my son to believe me before he moved out. Then I would have zero say in what he did or didn’t do.
My husband I had already decided that we would no longer buy pork any more. That was not because of the BTD nor was it for religious reasons. It was due to all the things I had learned about pork back when I had been in culinary school. Someone we knew had become a living example of what life-threatening things can happen to those that eat it. Therefore, we decided that we were also no longer going to buy our son any more beef. Period. So, guess who started going out to eat and getting it with his friends in restaurants? Yep. Our son. He’d even come home mystified as to why he would then not feel good...
Then, enter the reappearance of the BTD Forums back in September. I was overjoyed! Now I had a place that I could “go” that I didn’t feel like such an outcast as to what I would and would not eat. It offered contact with LOTS of other people that thought generally along the same lines I did. To make it even better, I met some more AB’s!
My son thought this was amusing...his Mom had become a “forum-dwelling troglodyte” just like himself (I still maintain that I am NOT - but that’s another story). One day, as I was reading the testimonials that various people had posted, he started reading over my shoulder. The humorous signature line of someone had caught his eye. More importantly, it had struck some sort of chord within him. He asked if this person posted much. I told him a little bit about the person from what I knew. As it turns out, it was someone who was also a blogger and also the same blood type and gender as my son (he was reading Paul Buckless' blogs if you are curious).
A day passed. Then, my son started voluntarily reading Paul's archives. Then, something clicked. He agreed to try the BTD for 42 days under the condition that if at the end of that time he was still unconvinced that I would not bring up the BTD ever again. That was extreme to me. Was I really that much of a pest? Did I really trust the BTD to give him undeniable results in less than 2 months? He wasn’t overweight, didn’t have any of the typical teen skin problems, or anything else that he was trying to resolve other than some recurring warts on his hands. I agreed, with reservation, to his terms and with one modification. As his parent, who loved him, I could not guarantee to never ever mention the BTD to him again, but I would agree try not to mention it to him.
He started drinking coffee the next morning. He HATED it. Nevertheless, he kept drinking it. Two days later, his warts were noticeably smaller. He stopped eating beef when out with friends...his stomach felt much better. He started asking me to double check his lunches for avoids. He asked for a mini coffee maker and an electric grill so that he could start learning how to cook compliantly! He started eating salads for lunch...with actual vegetables in them instead of being half croutons that he had gotten at the grocery. Then he asked me to start teaching him how to do the appropriate A types of exercise.
Then, it happened. Last night, he did a complete A workout for the second time. After his shower, while I was working on some other stuff, he joined the forums. He is trying to find ways to help speed up his rate of compliance. While it would be nice, I don’t have all the answers for him. But I am SO HAPPY that I kept at him. Bottom line: DO NOT be a nag, I really didn’t mean to be one if I really was, BUT DO NOT give up either.
Music: Yarbough & Peoples - Don't You Stop The Music
What a lovely day!!! Perfectly freezing outside....spent most of the day talking with friends online & cleaning the bedroom. A perfect day off. If you have not been to this website's forums - it's really a must...soooo many people on this diet to talk to about ANYTHING!!! & since we're all over the world - there's ALWAYS someone posting.....it's a great way to share ideas.
So, today I've been learning about the raw diet for your cat & dog - definately read the forum entry on it or ask blogger Rachel for more info.
After I fed kitty the bones & some raw shredded turkey, I fixed one of the best meals I've had in a long time
Pre-Heat oven to @ 325. Take your turkey (any cut) an place in pan or corning wear. Open up a bottle of Lemon Dill Sauce from Trader Joe's. Pour enough to cover the turkey and then some. Clean & shave a parsnip or two. Cut into large chunks. Place on top of the turkey. Gently douse the parsnip with tamari/ soy sauce. Sprinkle a compliant dill seasoning on top. Cook for @1 hour. Let cool. Tastes sooooo good and sooo tender!!! & everyone can eat it!!!
Ok....I did lie a little....the Lemon Dill Sauce from Trader Joe's has Rice Vinegar as it's second ingredient. Avoid for all but those lucky B's. However, compared to other pre-made sauces with maltodextrin, dextrose & other garbage in them, I'll take my chances with this. Best yet, it didn't need to marinate for any amount of time but tasted like it had been soaking in the sauce all night :-) I think collard greens or broccolli would be the perfect side veggie with this. & Parsnips are sweet & BENEFICIAL for all!!!
I have recently had some of the wisdom of the BTD reaffirmed for me. I had, for quite some time, been enjoying a lovely goat cheese available in here Toronto, called Caprano. It comes in a small round, and is a creamy texture with a delicious flavour. I have been buying it regularly at one of the cheese stores at Kensington Market, where I buy my food supplies. Lately it has changed texture – it is less creamy and prone to slight crumbling, with a stronger, not quite so delicious flavour. And lately – surprise, surprise! – I have not been feeling quite as good as I had been not so long ago. I had been quietly considering at age – almost 67 – that my body was simply wearing out, and that perhaps the little strains I had been feeling, coupled with a general feeling of being more tired than normal had to go along with my age, and were something to which I needed to become accustomed. Stopping eating the cheese altogether (with regrets, of course) has quickly brought my energy back up to remembered levels. It was so easy! Thereby the lesson was learned first-hand of why it is important not to eat aged cheeses, no matter the source of the cheese (cow, goat, sheep).
Friday night I visited some friends for dinner. As expected, the meal was not a compliant one for this B non-secretor person. I declined to eat the lentil soup, even though I was urged to taste it at least. It looked delicious, but I did not want to jeopardize my relatively delicate health balance. The main course was a lamb stew, which was very tasty. It included potato and tomato in its make-up. I haven’t eaten potatoes for a very long while now, but I did manage to get a few pieces on my plate (and they were delicious!). As well, the potato lectins were obviously in the broth of the stew. I suspect the oil used for cooking the stew was also an avoid, and there may have been other avoids in the stew on a small scale. I was really “under the weather” when I got up on Saturday morning. I was headachey, slightly grumpy and low energy, most of which, thankfully, did leave by early afternoon, except for the headache. It is difficult, though, to explain to the best-intentioned and very loving but not understanding friends that something they have inadvertently included in their cooking will make you sick, particularly when in the moment you look perfectly normal and don’t show any signs of malaise after eating their food.
Another friend, visiting on Saturday, expressed the thought that knowing that I was eating something on the avoid list was going to give me a reaction because “it is a psychological problem after all”. I had to explain that it is a genetic affliction, and that there is nothing that can fix the fact that I am a non-secretor, and will therefore continue, as I have all my life so far, to react to avoid foods in varying degrees. And that it will probably get worse as I continue to age and have less and less tolerance for items containing damaging lectins for my system.
The past weekend, which included the dinner invitation on Friday and visits with friends at my home on Saturday and Sunday, emphasized the fact that when I cook my own food I feel very well indeed, and my energy can actually go up because of that. It’s all so simple when I follow the BTD, and so terrible when even a small deviation comes along.
Aside from my food issues, it has been impossible to not think about the people affected by the tsunami in south-east Asia. In actual fact, there is no-one on this planet who has not been affected in one way or another. I am delighted to reflect on the fact that Canadians have been extremely generous in giving donations and are engaged in doing various things to raise relief money for the people in those ravaged countries. Benefit concerts are being held in so many places, and most people here seem very happy to contribute towards helping to rebuild homes and lives, as they are able.
Our Canadian Prime Minister, currently on tour to see first hand the devastation, has realized that there are two aspects to the event – the one that is apparent to the naked eye (and I’m sure, unbelievable in extent), and the one that no-one can see, that no-one can comprehend, the inner feelings of incredible loss of family, friends, homes and communities. In those few moments, life on this planet has changed inalterably. As much as we scramble to help in the efforts to rebuild lives, we can never bring back what vanished so quickly. A Canadian man, making a donation of five and a half million dollars (matched by the Canadian government, by the way, to double the effect), said that he was doing it simply because he couldn’t live with the nightmares he was experiencing, night after night since the disaster
So we all do what we can, as we feel compelled to do. In the very least, I invite everyone reading these words to join in a few moments of prayer every day for the peace of mind and safety of those survivors in the region and for their friends and relatives who are spread throughout the world – as well as for the healing of our planet earth after these wounds have been inflicted without warning. It does not matter what you believe or how you pray – or if you don’t know how to pray – every simple prayer is heard and has a power. Together, the power of our prayers is enormous – but we must do it in order to manifest this power. God bless everyone!
Yesterday, I talked about some ideas for celebrating Valentine’s Day. Today, I have a few more suggestions for that day because some of you may feel that a meal is just not the way you want to go.
Have you ever looked at the ingredients lists on those beautiful red heart boxes filled with all sorts of tempting candies? AVOID CITY!!! So, how about making your own? You can usually get the boxes from any retail candy making supply company in your city. If you live somewhere that doesn’t have one, they can also be found online. But, because of waiting for the order to be filled, you would need to do it NOW…that’s why I’m writing about this topic today instead of waiting until later when it’s closer to February 14th.
Don’t want to buy a box or got to it too late? How about making a heart box made of chocolate? The molds and directions are usually available now in arts and crafts stores in with the cake decorating supplies. Some cake decorating and candy making supply shops that do retail also offer classes on how to make these things if you feel you need more than just the instructions and some pictures that should be included with the mold pieces.
After you decide on how you want to deal with the box situation and have it all taken care of the next question is what are you going to put in it? Most candies are made with cream, half ‘n’ half, and/or contain corn syrup which pretty much rules them out for all the blood types.
Some candies that I know of that do not call for any of the above three and are therefore possibilities that you might want to consider are:
Peanut butter creams (AB's only): These get their name from their creamy texture. There is no cream used in them. They’re made from cream cheese that has been mixed with peanut butter, a bit of vanilla, some butter or clarified butter and then sweetened and rolled in roasted chopped nuts. You can vary these by dipping them in melted chocolate rather than rolling them in the nuts or you could go for broke and dip them in the chocolate after you roll them in the nuts).
Piping chocolate (use this to decorate your chocolate heart box and/or the candies that you make), butter brickle (if it’s for an O or a B because it needs butter), chocolate barks (white, dark, or milk depending on the recipients blood type and taste preferences, just melt some chocolate, stir in some bite-size blood type appropriate additions, chopped nuts for an example, pour it out onto a parchment lined baking pan and let it cool. Break it up into pieces and you’re done).
How about sugarplums? They’re dried plums (prunes) that have been pureed with brandy, shaped into balls and then rolled in sugar. Brandy is a type of hard alcohol and therefore an avoid for most blood types. To replace it you could use any liquid that you felt would taste good with the dried plums to replace it. You could vary this by using some of the moister dried fruits instead of the dried plums (like apricots, pineapple chunks, cherries or a mixture of any you feel work together flavorwise)
How about nuts and/or dried fruits dipped in chocolates? If you wanted to fancy them up so that they aren’t so much like bridge mix (which I have nothing against, bridge mix is tasty) you could drizzle the brown chocolate with some white chocolate for extra flair (or vice versa).
How do you make all these different types of candies? BEFORE the 7th of February you can find them in various candy making books (if you don’t think that you’ll be making candy much and want to just try it out some first then check some candy making cookbooks out of your local library) or round up some from online. You won’t really need to invest in a dipping fork and double boiler to temper the chocolate. You can use a plain old ordinary fork that you have in your kitchen in place of the dipping fork. For the double boiler just fill a pot with boiling water and set another pot of similar size over it. Keep the two stacked pots on a hot enough heat that the water continues to simmer. Place your broken/chopped up bits of chocolate into the empty top pot and wait. The rising steam from the pot below will melt and temper the chocolate.
Two things to be careful about: do NOT let any of the water or steam get into the top pot of chocolate. If it does, it will cause the chocolate to seize…the chocolate will then be tough and nasty…it won’t hurt you, but you won’t want to eat it. Second, after you get the chocolate melting be sure that it all melts COMPLETELY. That is the tempering part. If you do not do this there is the likely chance that not all of the solidified oils in the chocolate have completely melted. When the chocolate resolidifies, it will bloom. That means it will be streaked with various types of browns instead of being one solid color. It will not be smooth and glossy either, it will be either rough and matte finished or kinda powdery and matte finished. Again, it won’t hurt anyone who might eat it, but it won’t look as pretty. Last, but not least, be sure you use couverture chocolate NOT bakers chocolate.
Couverture chocolate is also called coating chocolate. The better name brand you buy the better the flavor. If you already have a favorite plain chocolate candy bar brand, you could even melt them and use them. If you don’t know which type of chocolate you have you can determine it several different ways. If it’s a commercially made candy bar then it’s couverture. If it makes a snapping sound when you break it, it’s couverture. If it’s a flat shaped disc it’s probably couverture. If it’s shaped like Nestle morsels then it’s probably baking chocolate. If it actually is Nestle morsels then it is baking chocolate.
The reason you do not want to use baking chocolate is that it is formulated to keep its shape as it heats in the oven during baking. Couverture chocolate on the other hand is formulate to melt easily so that it evenly enrobes whatever it’s being poured over or having dipped into it.
A piece of chocolate trivia: chocolates melting point is the same as body temperature: 98.6*F (36.66 C)
B.A.R.F. - Bones and Raw Food
On January 15, EquiPro posted a fascinating and informative piece on the BTD forum concerning feeding our cats and dogs bones and raw food. She listed a couple very good and worth reading web sites. The additional comments made by others really has peaked my interest in using this approach to feeding our three dogs and one obese cat. Therefore, never to be one to put off when convinced of a better method, I decided to make the necessary changes.
Muppet, my soon-to-be 14 year old Pomapoo was the first target for improved doggie feeding. He gladly accepted and ate a small portion of premium ground beef. Well, I figured that this was going to be a breeze. I took a frozen whole chicken out of the freezer for the dogs and cat to share after it thaws.
Having nothing suitable (cost-wise, that is) for them to eat for dinner tonight, I headed to the shopping center. Whole chickens $2.49 a pound ($9.49 for 1 chicken) , chicken hearts on sale for $1.79 a pound, and chicken gizzards @ $1.19 a pound. I decided to check out the bones. Ninety-nine percent meat-free bones were only $1.29 a pound! By then I was becoming discouraged. I talked to the butcher and was told they only bring up pre-sectioned beef and have no left-over bones!
Well, I came home with a small package of gizzards, a small container of chicken hearts, and two beef-less bones for a total of $5.46. At least it is a start.
Katie Cat took one sniff of the gizzard and chicken heart, looked at me as though I was trying to poison her, puffed up and walked off. She’s always refused to eat anything but Friskies Ocean Flavored dry cat food and apparently doesn’t think chicken gizzards and heart measure up to that delicacy. We’ll just keep on trying.
As Muppet had been quite happy with the beef earlier today, I was sure he would be pleased to eat a gizzard and heart. Wrong. He looked at me rather disgustingly, came over and tried begging for my dinner which wasn’t gizzards or hearts. Oh well!
Cassie and Tucker enjoyed their goose egg coated dried dog food and a nice chunk of beef bone to chew on tonight. They are always happy to get a change in food. Tomorrow is another day and we will continue introducing our dogs and cat to the foods that are for their type and maybe some day they will all agree that the change was worth it.
If you look at your calendar, you might notice that Valentine’s Day is less than a month away! Am I really so into that holiday that I avidly await it’s return? No, but when I was still directly involved in the food industry it marked the beginning of the end. The beginning of actually having some work (and hence much better pay cheques) after the slowness of January that immediately follows on the heels of the big New Year’s bashes. Business starts to begin to pick up again because many people want to take their sweetheart out for a nice romantic supper.
To me, one of the absolute WORST traps for a BTD-er is a holiday. Holidays often have special foods associated with their celebration. Those foods are most often riddled with avoids which can be particularly hard to stay away from because of the hold they can have on us because they are associated with emotions as well as taste preferences. Holidays that are often marked in restaurants are tricky because of the lack of control a BTD-er has over the menu.
Yes, I know that some people say that all you need to do is ask for something different that you can have be substituted. In my AB experience that is not always that easy - especially for menus that are for a special holiday menu. Many times the kitchen staff just will not have the ingredients available to them because everything will be geared towards that special menu unless you make your special requests in advance when you make your reservation.
Another idea is to just skip the restaurant scene all together and have your meal at home. You control the menu that way. Most people go out to eat because they are rushed for time, are traveling and have no choice (which hopefully, isn’t you) or they are out for the change of pace/entertainment value of their night out. With that in mind, here are some ideas I’ve come up with that might appeal to you.
Borrow from the low-carb people: Make egg “crepes”. For each crepe you will need, beat 1 egg and then let it cook over medium heat in a preheated small nonstick sauté pan with a little neutral flavor complaint oil (I use canola) or clarified butter. Let the egg cook for a bit. After about 5 minutes, check to see how much it has set. It may even be done cooking. If you would like, you can flip it over and cook it some on the face up side or you can just cook it all the way through without ever turning it over. Next, take your “crepe” and place your choice of prepared compliant veggies down the center of it (or over one half of it). Then, either carefully fold the two sides in (or fold the other half over the veggies covered side). If you want to pretty it up or add more flavors or both, spoon some sauce that you like over it. Examples: tofu cheese sauce (Cook Right Four Your Type, page 320 of my copy) or grated cheese or a tomato sauce. Sprinkle it with some green onion or chopped parsley. If you know you will be especially pressed for time, you can make them in advance, let them cool completely, and then put them in your ‘fridge to use later on in the week.
For a side dish, prepare whatever grain dish you would like to have. I’m going to use rice pilaf for my example. To make it snazzy like they do in the restaurants, gently, but firmly, pack it into a cup, small bowl, or custard dish that you have lightly oiled with neutral flavored oil. Unmold the pilaf over the plate exactly where you want it on the plate by simply turning the cup upside down. NOTE: I would try doing this a couple of times over a plate you do not intend to actually serve on because sometimes it can take several attempts at unmolding to get this right.
If you are planning to serve your O or B a nice grilled steak or your AB a baked potato, then you might want to consider making a compound butter. Compound butter is butter (or clarified butter) that has been softened and then had various herbs and or spices mixed into it and then chilled. As the butter melts over the food, the flavor of the herbs goes with it because, in addition to many other things, oil acts as a flavor carrier.
If you want to fancy it up some more and have a small candy mold in an appropriate shape, it can be used to shape butter or clarified butter without ruining it for use in making candies. Use room temperature butter* or clarified butter so that it is easy to work with. Pack it into the mold(s). Chill it until it is solid - time will vary according to the thickness of the mold used - and then invert the mold with a little pressure to loosen it. I you do this and use one of the clear plastic type molds do NOT clean it with any type of detergent. The chemicals in the detergent can ruin your mold. Instead, run it under lots of clean hot water. The heat will melt the butter. Since oil and water do not mix the stream of water will wash away the remaining film of oil left by the butter.
Don’t forget some music for atmosphere. If you are preparing an ethnic menu, how about choosing some music from the foods point of origin? Italian or French or if you don’t know where it comes from you could pick something classical.
How about a gift of some extra good quality (read expensive) green tea or red wine? All the blood types can have both of these. If you can afford it, dress ‘em up with some cellophane wrap and curling ribbon or box ‘em up with nice cups and/or a teapot or wineglasses (maybe get some engraving done on the glassware).
*If you are tired of having rock hard butter or clarified butter to spread on your compliant grain products (breads, pastas, and so on) here’s two things I do to avoid the problem entirely. For butter: get yourself a butter bell. It’s a two-piece ceramic item that you put chilled clean water in one half of and a whole stick of butter in the other half. The whole thing sits out of the refrigerator. The water seal keeps the butter cool so it doesn’t spoil, but the lower temperature keeps it soft. The only time the butter bell will fail is if your kitchen gets really warm and stays really warm - like during the hot summer months if you don’t use an air conditioner. Many places make them and they are easy to find online. For clarified butter: if you refrigerate it, it not only gets rock hard, it also can get gritty textured. Instead of refrigerating it, just cover it and let it sit out in your kitchen. As long as it doesn’t get wet or contaminated with stuff you wouldn’t want in it anyway, it will be fine. The stuff that you removed from it when you clarified it (the butter solids) is what spoils quickly. Since they’re gone, they can’t spoil.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: I've had U2's "Pride (In the Name of Love)" in my head all day. And I have yet to download all the songs into my U2 iPod that I got for Xmas. Not even that one. It just came. Poof! The Edge's guitar chords and Bono's voice going thru my body as they should on this day. A delightful earworm. Happily replaces Tori's new, "Sleeps with butterflies." It was time to make room for something else. Thanks guys.
There is a definite transformation taking place inside of me despite current circumstances. In some ways, I certainly did not start the new year out right. Too much of 2004 crept into 2005 with no mercy. However, one thing I've stuck to my guns about is learning to embrace the faith into which I was baptized. I've gone through many cycles of trying to do this the right way throughout my life.
Certainly, many aspects of Catholicism and Christianity in general leave me only with more questions and doubts, much like many things in life one chooses to embrace. However, this time, I'm starting out the year with something a little "unorthodox" for Erika Klus. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I'm still happy to be in a blue state, blah blah blah. I'm still a hippie at heart. But I'm a closet Catholic, dammit. I really get excited to sing Alleluia after the second reading. And I love to be in a room full of people who all at once say, "Lord, hear our prayer." Now you know my dirty little secret.
Every night before bed, I read about the Saints. The Basilica (www.mary.org) has a wonderful little bookstore and giftshop that I enjoy visiting every once in a while after Mass. One of the books I decided to buy is called, "365 Saints." It's a modest little book that looks at very human aspects of each Saint. This puts me at peace at night, like some sort of safety blanket. There is a nice complementary book called, "Saint of the day" which is a little more technical and not quite as inspiring, but gives a few more details about each Saint.
Well, these Saints are all very important to me, but the four Saints which have captured my heart and lifted my spirit tonight are St. Carrie, St. Samantha, St. Miranda, and St. Charlotte. That's right, ladies. Sex and the City: Season 6, Part 2, Episodes 1-4!!!! As my cousin/neighbor just moved away to North Carolina, my friend Megan is in Mexico for vacation, and Grubster is back in the woods, I took on these surrogate friends to fill the void tonight. Oh, I really missed them! (weep).
Ever since I heard the last disc sets would be coming out on DVD, I have been aching to see them. Every time I hit the movie place, everything's checked out. Finally, a little salvation tonight. It could not have been a better way to spend a working weekend. No pressures, no coming home smelling like smoke from a night out on the town, no personal drama. Just dating vicariously through four NYC women. I'm not quite ready for the real thing agaiin yet, haha.
Back to an actual BTD diet-related blog: I spent Friday evening at Ecopolitan writing a letter of recommendation for a very sweet technician who is trying to get into pharmacy school. If you have been following the blogs, you know that this is a raw vegan restaurant in uptown MPLS. Not a smidget of animal products in sight. Not quite my style, but when I need to feel cleansed and hydrated, I go there for rejuvelac, "raw" pizza (with buckwheat crust), and all the other good stuff they offer.
They had a carrot ginger curry soup special (raw, of course). I asked the waitress what they used to make it creamy but never got an answer. It was either cashew butter, avacado, tahini, or chickpea. Obviously quite a Russian roullette of BTD gambling. She never got back to me with what was in it. Oh well. Also had a nice sprouted lentil salad. The only avoids I could detect were the black olives and black pepper. Very good! Finished the meal with the "marinara pizza" with tomatos, red onions, alfalfa sprouts, apples, raisins, what else? I can't remember. Did I mention the glass of rejuvelac to start out the meal? Well, now I did.
There was a cute couple on the other side of the wall. They were there as long, and perhaps even longer than me. Drinking a bottle of organic wine, talking about life, and smooching. I thought that this would bother me, grate my nerves, etc. but I was very surprised by my inner stoicism and calm. It felt good to be alone with my laptop, doing something nice and necessary for another human being. Despite working 16 hours, I'm actually quite content with how it's all been. And I thank God for it all. No, I'm not being sarcastic here.
A bad tension headache plagued me throughout the day, most likely from the St. John's Wort, but not for sure. I ended the night at home with a sleep formula tea (hops, catnip, etc.) and added some feverfew. I slept well; by morning the headache was gone and I was ready to start a 10 hour work day. There you have it. Life after death. It'll be all right.
I sit here with the flu and an itchy nose and moms always say, you need to drink plenty of liquids to help it run it’s coarse sooner rather than later. I’m not a coffee drinker (odd espresso here and there) or black tea drinker and cola’s of any sort I can’t stomach and anyway they are all avoids for O’s so I will only allocate these few lines in my blog to them all. I do not drink with my meals which to on lookers may seam strange (don’t you get thirsty when you eat?). Fast food restaurants of all kinds must hate me because of my no soft drink ordering rule which undermines their profit making goals (you really just paying for the ice they put in the drink) I will drink wine when dining with company and usually limit myself to a few glasses. I love the odd beer especially when I am thirsty. Green tea has been a mainstay in my diet for over 2 years and I limit myself to a good 10oz cup a day. Prune, cherry and fresh pineapple and fresh grapefruit are the fruit juices (all preferably organic) of choice for me. Water…quite refreshing though tasteless…is best taken on an empty stomach. Considering it’s winter right now in my neck of the woods and I’m sick, I’d much prefer hot drinks, and considering too much green tea makes me a bit edgy, I have put myself on a quest to find some suitable drinks to fill some of this hot drink void. Herbal teas are the only answer.
I picked up three varieties last week, Fenugreek, roasted Dandelion root and Sarsaparilla.
Fenugreek is one of the oldest cultivated crops. The ancient Egyptians used it as food and incense. Benedictine monks introduced the plant to central Europe where it was widely established by the sixteenth century. Roasted Dandelion root has a full body, nutty flavor that the Europeans call dandelion coffee. Lastly, Sarsaparilla, is the root of a woody vine found in Mexico, Jamaica and Central America. Its name is derived from the Spanish for shrub and little vine. When anthropologists began coming to the new world, they found Sarsaparilla in heavy use among Amazon natives. It later gained large-scale popularity in the US in the 1800’s (I recall as a youth watching cowboy movies and hearing some of the locals in the saloons ordering the stuff…maybe it was fermented into an alcohol? Always wondered what the hell they were ordering). The taste of this tea later prompted the creation of “root beer’.
After partaking in all three, I would say the tastes get a bit of getting used to but I can say that they are all quite soothing and refreshing. Medicinally they are all known cancer fighting agents for O’s (see Dr D’s book on cancer). I would recommend them for all blood types except Fenugreek (an avoid for B’s and AB’s). Please make sure you buy the organic kind so you can enjoy these teas the way nature intended them. Also, good water is essential to brewing a great cup of tea; please use spring or filtered water to ensure the best results. You should also preheat your teapot or cup with hot water so the water used for the tea remains at a constant temperature while steeping. Lastly water temperature is important to release the natural ingredients, heat your water till it’s briskly boiling. The juice of an organic lemon and sweetness of organic honey make good compliments.
It’s 4pm…time for a cup of tea…my new habit for 2005...popularized by the British with an accompaniment of biscuits which I will pass because I still have my lectins to worry about.
While sipping a nice, fragrant cup of tea, I was viewing the winter scene on my windows. There is definitely a beautiful view beyond the windows, but this spectacular view was the frost on the windows. Jack Frost does himself proud in those paintings of feathers, swirls, zigzags and streaks. Each window had such a different painting. Unique, much like us.
When the temperature moderated (it was -21 F) again and the frost melted off the windows I felt a little sad. But, it is still just January and the frost may be back again this winter. Although Jack Frost artwork seems unlikely to be surpassed, we also get to enjoy the aurora borealis during the cold winter’s nights as the sheen of colored streaks dance across the cloudless sky.
What a blessing it is to witness such displays of beauty. I even needed to wear my winter coat for two days every time I ventured out of doors. Had it gotten much colder I would have worn my parka.
A side effect of the very cold temperatures is that the ice becomes harder. My ice grippers were no longer effective. Ice grippers are cleats or wire coils that dig into the ice and snow to prevent falls and are worn on the soles of the shoes. The ice was hard and dry so I really didn’t need them until it warmed up to zero and snowed. Unfortunately, the ice remained hard at that temperature, but the snow was slippery over the ice. It certainly made walking on the ice quite a chore.
The colder weather has prompted me to prepare hot soups, hot cider, and hot teas. I firmly believe that thick and hearty soups are the perfect meals for frigid weather. Now, if only we could have cornbread to go with them.
Music: Beatles - Black Bird Song
Too much fun last night!!! If you are in the NY/NJ area, you MUST see a band called "The Nerds" We saw them at Mulcahy's last night (www.mulcahys.com) & as usual, they were fabulous. They put so much passion into their music and can play anything from Eminem to Barry white to Gershwin and make it all flow together. Simply amazing. And they combine songs like ABBA's Dancing Queen w/ the Door's LA Lady b/c they have very similar back beats or something like that. I don't know much about music but my husband does and he thinks they're nifty. :-D We even got in before the $10 cover charge kicked in! But I'd pay to see them anyway....plus they wear Bermuda shorts, plaid & thick glasses. Who doesn't dig people confident enough about themselves to dress however they want! Go Nerds!!!!
Back to food....so, I had 2 krispey kreme donuts micro-waved for 10 seconds this morning. Perhaps this should be titled "What not to eat in the morning..." Delicious but I got a horrible tummy ache right afterwards....."you should know better Natalie...." Just b/c I'm out of my morning lemon doesn't mean I should go crazy.....If you are going to eat a donut though, the only way to eat it is slightly warm.....mmmmm......avoids......
In case you're new, every A & AB needs to have a cup of warm water with 1/2 of a lemon squeezed/reemed into it. A little bitter at first but you get used to it. The effects are great. It was one of the first things I did before even really changing much about how I eat & with all those avoids in me, I was in the bathroom within 5 minutes for the first 2 mornings. Pretty amazing laxative & all natural. & I hate the taste of metamuscil. Now that I'm on the diet, it doesn't work as fast but on days off when I'm just chilling, it works w/in 1/2 an hour - at work, it seems to work late in the afternoon for some reason. Maybe I'm just too busy w/ the kids to really be relaxed enough for that. Perhaps your wondering why I go on about this but I never realized how clogged I was & how much it effected my mood until I did this. It's a hard habit to get into but if most people can make themselves a cup of coffee in the morning, I'm sure you can microwave a mug of water for 60 seconds and squeeze a lemon into it. Chug it down (if you can :-)) & out the door to work!!!!
I'm going to start putting this at the end of each blog for the new people:
If you're looking for a quick reference of AB foods & guidelines; check under my picture & click on "Natalie's Archives" Go down to the 6/19 entry for a nice list. The encyclopedia & LRFYT are much better but this is a quick look to help get you started. :-)
I read fellow blogger, Deborah Hayes, blog for Friday. In it she mentioned, among other things, her on-going quest to find a compliant breakfast sausage for her family. I have found myself in the same position in the past. I’m guessing that if she and I have the same problem that there are probably others out there as well. So, that’s my topic.
I finally got so frustrated trying to find the sausages that I just gave up. Now, I make the elusive meat product myself (I was already making just about everything else myself, why not these as well?). You don’t have to be a charcutier to have it turn out right as long as you know the basic ratios to start with. For every 1 lb. of ground compliant meat that you use, add 1 Tab. dried seasoning(s) of your choice. Next, add any additional flavorings like cheese or chopped olives or chopped spinach or both. You can make as many different variations as you can think of. If you have no idea how to get the flavor you are aiming for, try reading the ingredients lists on whatever sausage you used previously. That will usually give you at least a place to start. If you make extra and do not cook it, store it in your freezer - not your refridgerator. Unlike traditional sausage, you will need to add a bit of a neutral flavor compliant oil to your pan when you cook your creation(s). I usually use either extra-virgin olive oil or canola.
The one that I find myself making the most often is one my family calls turkey “sausage”. I use one pound (½ kilo) of ground dark turkey with 1 Tablespoon (15 ml) of Italian herbs, and a few chopped garlic cloves. I make this one so often because I can also use it as meat in lasagna or add an egg and some spelt breadcrumbs (break up a slice of bread and run it a bit in a food processor) to make meatballs to go with pasta.
Anyway, use your hands (yes, your hands, this is important - I’m not joking) to really mix up the meat, herbs/spices, and any additional items - pretend you are making meatloaf. Shape the meat mixture into patties and fry or bake them in cupcake/muffin pans at about 350*F for 20-30 minutes.
If you cook them in the “Texas” style (extra-large sized cups) pans, you have INSTANT portion control (since they are larger, they will need to cook a bit longer).
Don’t limit yourself to the traditional sausage type meats. For example, if you puree a pound of cod fillets in a food processor with some celery, green onion, a bit of chili powder, and an egg (you won’t taste the egg, it acts as a binder) then you have cod cakes or cod cake flavored “muffins”. Add a side of mayonnaise flavored with a little lemon zest instead of tartar sauce since it’s not a good idea for us AB’s to have pickles. Another option would be a compliant cocktail sauce: tomato paste thinned with water to whatever thickness you would like, some lemon zest, a bit of horseradish, and some sea salt (if you like it sweet, add a little sugar).
No matter which type of protein you chose to use, if you bake a bunch of ‘em and freeze ‘em, you not only have instant portion control - you also have a fast breakfast idea. Just be sure to remember to thaw them the night before...otherwise you’ll be waiting around forever for ‘em to resemble something other than hockey pucks.
Here’s something else that I’ve thought of as I typed this blog that you might like to try:
Remember that nice smoked flavor you used to get with your grill? How can you get that without the carcinogenic smoke? How can you get it year round regardless of the weather? You might like to try a method called plank cooking. If you’ve never heard of it before, it’s using a piece of wood that makes food taste good (like alder, western red cedar, or hickory) instead of a roasting pan or baking sheet to cook your food(s) on in your oven. Planks can be purchased online from specialty places or in some shops if you look around. They’re cheaper than your gas grill was, you don’t have to keep buying replacement grill bricks and propane (or, if you went traditional, the briquettes and lighter fluid). They are also much easier to clean. Unlike firewood or briquettes, they are reusable, and when used to cook vegetables or fish “steaks”, they don’t have the problem of the food falling in-between the spaces of a grill grid.
For the past few months, ever since a run in cold weather, I have been experiencing what I thought, was at first, a cold, then I thought exercise induced asthma, now I know it is dairy induced asthma. I am not a dairy fan, but occasionally, I will have a lunch with a beef kebab, salad and tzatziki dip as a side (maybe 3 tablespoons). It has finally occurred to me, that on the days I have this lunch, I spend the afternoon and evening with an asthma hack. The hack is usually gone by the evening, but I am so tired after I need a good 10-hour sleep. I am going to start avoiding that nasty dairy dip now!! My alternative is to bring some Argentinan Salsa (parsley salsa) to lunch on Beef Kebab days.
After 7 years in the WOL, I am finally getting the fact, that even diminutive amounts of avoids can harm this O non body. I have to wonder how a baby feels when a new avoid food is introduced to them. When I introduced grain cereals to my first O son, he would sleep through the night, but then be extremely groggy and cranky the next morning. I would say to myself he had a great sleep and is just taking time waking up but as I know now, he was reacting to the grain and he was actually experiencing fatigue.
Back to the present, we have been experiencing -33C weather with wind chills of -44C. Boarding has been cancelled for the past 2 nights and my boys are getting major cabin fever. However, the weather should improve to a balmy -16C this weekend and the Boarder X racing season (a cross between snowboarding and roller derby) will start. My older son should place in the top 3 but last night we were laughing about plotting to feed his competitors avoids before the races (Fettucini Alfredo and ice cream anyone?) and see how they do!!! Brenden doesn't like to eat before he races, but he is seriously considering a beef/veggie salad of some sort for that day. Let the races begin!
Although I’ve always been privileged to have good food available, determining the best approach to eating foods for health has been an interest of mine for almost 40 years. It has been nearly that long, too, that boxed and prepared foods were a rarity in my kitchen. Unfortunately, however, our vehicles quite often still managed a trip to the local fast food joints.
Living in the far north provided an abundance of moose, caribou, several varieties of salmon, halibut, trout, and occasionally fresh seafood and fowl. Now, except for salmon and halibut, it is a rarity for us to eat those other meats. Fresh produce was (and for the most part still is) a mid to late summer fiesta. With an abundance of sunlight some vegetables grow very well, however, as the daytime temperatures are usually in the 60’s (F) most plants don’t grow well here.
Realizing as a teenager that good food is imperative to health I began a journey to study and learn about nutrition. Adelle Davis was my inspiration. Even though I tried to provide the best of food for my family and me, health issues persisted.
A real breakthrough occurred when my husband’s friend suggested I try kombucha for my asthma. I was on 6 prescriptions a day and still barely breathing. After reading a book containing studies and history of the kombucha mushroom, I decided to give it a try. It was almost miraculous! My asthma quit! I went off all medications within a week. That natural drink did what all the doctors and medication couldn’t do! God does provide for us.
That really got me to thinking, questioning, and learning even more. I’ve always wondered why some people in a community would get sick, some would die, some would recover, and some (even those caring for the sick) would remain healthy. I had also wondered why there are 4 blood types (8 if you count negative or positive). What makes people so different and yet the same?
When I first read the Eat Right 4 Your Blood Type it really made sense. When I read the Encyclopedia, I became excited! There were answers to several of my questions. Blood type does play a factor in illnesses! Wow! From that point on, I’ve been a convert! Rarely a day goes by that I don’t introduce someone to the BTD. Many people are very interested, so I give them my business card on which I write the website address. This is worth sharing with people.
Just a few nights ago, I was in our front yard and noticed the subtlest, but undeniable, smell of spring - that awakening earth kind of scent that is really indescribable, but very identifiable. I have also noticed that some of the plants in our yard have little red buds on them.
Daylight is already noticeably around more and I am sleeping less.
Monday, we had an unpredicted GORGEOUS day. Sunshine, warm temperatures, and there was just something about the day that it just felt WOW! My family went to a local park for a once around its lake. I felt so much more energetic and refreshed afterwards than I do on my NordicTrack or BodyRow or doing aerobics or whatever.
Wednesday morning, I heard bird song. Not bird sounds - bird SONG. There is a difference.
Yogurt has become more common in my diet because my UN-pasteurized goat milk is temporarily unavailable because the nannies are kidding. This means that eggs will soon be available again. NOTE for city folks: whether or not hens lay eggs, and to some extent the frequency that they lay them, depends on the amount of light they are exposed to. That means that when there’s not much daylight (late fall/winter) they stop laying unless you expose them to some type of artificial light. Laying eggs without ever letting their bodies take a break is not good for them.
So what has all this to do with the BTD? Several things really. First of all, it occurs to me that the “skimpy” portions recommended for dairy items and eggs really do make a lot of sense - it’s just that most of us are used to living like kings and queens. If animals are raised humanely and agriculture is being carried out in a sustainable way, then you cannot have an infinite supply of everything for everyone. Some rationing has to be done...otherwise those cute little gray and ivory kids (baby goats) would starve and the hens would need to be “retired” way before their time. No, I’m not an animal rights activist, but neither do I think that we should abuse them either.
The coming of Spring means the coming of the main planting season. The portion guidelines for grain(s) become more understandable then, too. The older types of grains that most of the blood types require produce a smaller yield per acre/hectare. That is the primary reason that those older varieties of grain were breed to produce the wheat of today. It also means more work with less to show for it. Again, there just isn’t as much to go around...there is enough for everyone, but not enough for everyone to have an endless supply.
I have noticed that people over on the BTD bulletin boards mention from time to time that they have been told that they are eating too much of the same things over and over and over. Their ND or homeopath has advised them to eat a bigger variety of foods because they are sensitizing their bodies to whatever it is they have been eating too much of. I did the exact same thing myself when I was first learning how to BTD.
How did I fix the problem? I started eating seasonally. By “seasonally” I mean that I do my best to eat the foods that are available as the seasons change. To give you some examples, I only eat asparagus in the spring. I try to eat grapes only in the fall. I only eat potatoes in the fall, winter, and early spring. Dried fruits are mainly for the fall and winter. Fresh tomatoes are for late summer and early fall. In addition to keeping me from sensitizing to some of my favorite foods, eating like this does several other things. It makes the different types of food something to look forward to having from one season to the next. It also makes my food bill a little less. I think it also helps my body. We have circadian rhythms that our bodies cycle through each day and each month (biorhythms). I think it follows that we also have seasonal changes just like the plants and animals around us, even if we are not necessarily consciously aware of them.
When I'm lost in life, I go back to Tori Amos. A Sorta Fairy Tale describes my life right about now. But now I've got my own Fairy Tale to share.
This has been a very difficult winter for me. I try to keep my blogs light and airy, though not without a little bit of deeper philosophical emphasis from time to time. This week has been tough for me. I'm getting through it day by day with faith, exercise, and deep breathing (I've forgotten to breathe countless times lately). Without giving away the intimate details of the drama and confusion of Erika Klus, I instead give to you the continuing storybook Fairy Tale of Grubby Bear (aka Grubster) and Mrs. Lingonberry.
(If you are lost on this one, refer back to the archived blog entitled "Bears gone wild").
Mrs. Lingonberry was becoming very unhappy going from the village into the forest and back into the village repeatedly. Grubster preferred to spend time in the woods. All the tall buildings where the trees were cut down in excess to meet human standards, the taxidermy, and bright lanterns of the village were too startling for a bear who was most serene in nature. Mrs. Lingonberry preferred life in the village. Wizards, witches, and common apothecaries awakened a passion within her that she could only seem to fulfill in the village. Where there were people, there was music, dancing, song. There was renaissance innovation. The forest seemed cold, dark, and scary to her. Since she didn't have all the hair that Bear did, she got a lot of bruises, cuts, and mosquito bites whenever she visited Grubby Bear in the forest. Her delicate Fairy-like skin is in need of much repair from the endless brush she experienced in her travels.
Sometimes the harsh brush she encountered was her own fault. She took wrong turns through the forest when she was trying to find her way to Bear, instead finding demons and dragons she should have left well enough alone but instead tried to chase, tried to fight. Bear began to lose faith in Mrs. Lingonberry's ability to find Bear at the top of the mountain. To him, the path was clear. "No need for maps," says bear. "Just follow your nose, your instincts."
Mrs. Lingonberry was not a bear. She was fae (touched by the fairies). Her sense of smell was not nearly as keen as that of a bear. For her, maps were all she knew as well as some strange powerful intuitive force she has yet to master within herself. Dragons and demons appeared when her curiosity got the best of her. She became impatient with the Bear and his life in the forest. She insisted repeatedly that the Bear give up his life in the forest and stay in the village with her. This made Bear very, very mopey. He felt as if Mrs. Lingonberry didn't love him and didn't appreciate the time they spent as Bear and Fae should spend together. And the Bear was very bad with the village street directions and could not tell time because he could not turn over the hand-crafted hourglass (Bears don't have opposing thumbs).
Mrs. Lingonberry realized that Grubby Bear (aka Grubster) was getting very growly out in the human world. It was time to set him free again into the woods where he belongs. Will he ever find a peaceful co-existence again in the village with Mrs. Lingonberry? Mrs. Lingonberry doesn't know. Only Grubster knows for sure. Setting him free back into the forest where he can roll around in the pine cones and steal honey from the bees, that's where he needs to be now.
In setting Grubster free, Mrs. Lingonberry has a sense of peace. If Grubster eventually finds his way out of the twisted forest (where the wolves and cats howl his name, taunting him and teasing him, and tempting him to eat the park ranger), back to the village where Mrs. Lingonberry practices her healing alchemic craft, they will re-unite and dance around the tree of life together.
If Grubster chooses to stay in the forest as a creature of solitude, she hopes he finds his salvation and happiness there. Perhaps it's a matter of compromise they have not yet discovered. Perhaps Grubster and Mrs. Lingonberry would be happy together in a log cabin cooperative retreat. The house-like structure of the building and the warm fire crackling by their feet would satisfy Mrs. Lingonberry's need for village-like comfort, while the solitude of the woodsy outdoorsy backyard in the back country full of small woodland creatures, bees, and berries would satisfy the Grubster's need for adventure and nature. Mrs. Lingonberry doesn't know the answer. Grubster doesn't know the answer. They must simply go ask the wise old owl.
The owl spirit speaks gently in a rhythm and language that Grubster and Mrs. Lingonberry have yet to decipher. The owl takes His time in revealing His prophecy to these creatures living in confusion and hurt. For now, Mrs. Lingonberry needs to spend time in the concrete human world, baking pies for the commoners, full of organic ingredients. She needs to get in touch with the witches and learn much more from the wizards as she continues to learn potions that millenia of wisdom provide. This is what is best for her right now. Right now, she is content in the village. Her alchemic gifts are precious to the fellow villagers who need healing. Every night before she goes to bed, she listens to the owl. Sometimes she cries to the owl and the owl listens, hooting her gently to sleep with owl lullabyes.
How else do fae like Mrs. Lingonberry possibly get through a time like this in the cloudy village of SLPM? She goes within herself and finds her center once again. She realizes that there are probably hundreds of other creatures and humans alike out there who would make a special trip to the big bold city just to try her famous organic pies. Being that she's in a village far, far up in the northern hemisphere where the winters are long and dark and gloomy, she turns on her Lite Therapy box every morning. And she takes a crapload of St. John's Wort.
A few blogs back, I mentioned that you could do many things with just one recipe. I talked about how to make a pizza dough recipe into a mix and said that it can also be used as a recipe to make warm gooey garlic stuffed cheese sticks...but I have not yet told you how.
This is what you do to make it into garlic stuffed cheese twists:
Make your pizza dough mix. While the dough is rising, go rummage in the ‘fridge a bit and find yourself some Ranch style dressing. If you don't have any, make some. Use the following 1:1 ratio to make the base: equal amounts of mayonnaise and sour cream. For each cup of base that you make add 1/2 teaspoon of dill weed (chopped fresh or dried - it doesn’t matter). Next, add a bit of mustard paste or powder. Remember that the flavor will intensify as the dressing cures (ages) so don’t use more than just a little bit the first time you try this unless you need to clean out your sinuses. Add a sprinkle of salt and mix it all very well. That’s it for a basic Ranch Dressing to get you started. If you like it plain that's fine, but if you want more flavor, you can do all sorts of variations. You might like to add some garlic or a bit of green onion to it. The only limit is your own tastebuds and the ingredients you have available to work with.
Next, get yourself lots of fresh garlic. If you are a garlic lover like me, get yourself LOTS and LOTS of garlic. Peel all the garlic cloves (a hint how to easily peel lots of garlic cloves: if you have any of the foam type shelf liner that is for cushioning glassware that you’re not using, cut a piece of it about 3-6” square. Place a few garlic cloves in the center of the middle of one square. Place the second square over the garlic and the first square - sorta a garlic sandwich. Firmly, but not too firmly, roll the garlic cloves around a bit between the two pieces of foam. As they rub against each other and the foam, the skins will loosen and be much easier to remove). Get a cutting board and a sharp knife. Note: Many people feel that sharp knifes can be dangerous. In the kitchen, it's the dull knifes that cause the most knife related accidents. They slip out of control much more easily than sharp ones because you have to exert more pressure on them to get them to cut. However, I digress. Chop up the garlic cloves. Reheat your oven if necessary so that your dough can finish rising.
In a small sauté pan, heat some EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil). When the oil is warm enough that you think the garlic will sizzle a bit, put the garlic in oil and stir them around a bit. Cook them at about medium until you can smell the garlic aroma coming up and out of the oil. Take them off the heat and set them aside to cool down.
Find yourself some pecorino romano or manchego cheese. Grate it using the largest holes your grater has. Toss some of it into a food processor. Chop it further in the processor for a few seconds...pulsing it off and on works best. Now you have two different coarseness of the cheese. Set it aside. Start your oven preheating to the same temperature that you would use if you were making pizza.
When your dough has finished rising, oil your hands with some olive oil and remove the dough from the bowl. Divide the dough into two equal portions. Hint: so that you don’t end up pulling the dough either separate one piece from another with a twisting motion or cut it with a sharp knife. Next, roll out one piece of dough to the same thickness you would if you were going to make it into a pizza. Brush it or smear it well with some EVOO. Sprinkle it with some basil or other Italian seasoning(s) if you didn’t add any of them to the dough already. Next, evenly sprinkle the oil with the chopped garlic. Then add the cheese that is the powder-like texture. Set it out of your way. Roll out the second piece of dough, brush it with the oil as well, and set it on top of the first one. Pinch the edges together. Cut the dough in half. Cut each half into strips that are about ¾” to 1” wide. Being careful not to let all of the cheese and garlic come out from between the two pieces of dough, twist each strip and place it on a baking sheet as close together as possible. After all of the twists have been made, sprinkle them with a little bit of the courser grated cheese. Bake them as if they are a pizza.
When they are finished cooking and still very hot, sprinkle them with the remaining cheese. Let the cheese melt for awhile. When they have cooled enough to handle, serve the twists with the Ranch Dressing as a dipping sauce. You could also use some leftover tomato sauce if you have any you want to use up.
Please notice how I have played around with just one recipe so that now you have four uses for it (fresh pizza dough, dough mix, frozen crust, and now cheese sticks). For this last one, I did not give you any specific quantities. That was not by mistake. I don’t know how much garlic you would like to use. I don’t know how much cheese you would like. Please do not be afraid of recipes or changing them to suit your own preferences and needs. Recipes are just suggestions of how you might like to try combining foods that will, hopefully, be pleasing to your tastebuds. The Recipe Police will NOT come and take you away if you substitute one or more ingredients in a recipe. If the substitutes come from your food lists and are used to replace avoids, the chances are VERY good that you will actually improve the flavor of the recipe (at least in your own fellow blood types opinions). The Food Police that share your blood type (and hence your food lists) may actually come and join you and ask YOU for YOUR recipe.
In a few of my past blogs, I have requested that you not toss out the recipes that you had used before you found out about the BTD. The reason is because it is very possible you will be able to adapt them to your new lifestyle using the fine art of substitution.
To steal a line from an old ad campaign of a popular fast food chain: Where’s the beef? There is more than just a small glimmer of light here! Both of the blood types that should not eat beef CAN have beef BROTH. That alone saves a lot of onion soup recipes and some lentil ones, too. If this sounds too radical to believe, I encourage you to do a bit of poking around in the archives of this site or come join us over on the BTD Forums to discuss it with other BTD-ers. However, that still leaves beef itself out. So what can you do when you want say, a hamburger? What else tastes like beef (not necessarily identical, but very close)…did you guess it? Ostrich. It is available in many forms: fresh, frozen, ground, ground patties, and filets. That’s nice, but where do you find them? There are several places that are possibilities. One is mail order via the web and another one is to just simply ask the natural foods store meat department. You will probably be pleasantly surprised to find that while ostrich is not a meat they currently carry on a daily basis that they can and will order you some. All you have to do is ask. The same goes for other sometimes hard to find animal proteins like lamb, pheasant, and rabbit. Some people like to substitute lamb for beef, but for my vote, lamb tastes like lamb…not at all similar to beef.
This brings us to chicken because for chicken, I suggest using rabbit instead. It is fairly safe to say that you can substitute rabbit any time chicken is called for in a recipe. I do not like to use tuna (even if it is called the chicken of the sea) because it’s a completely different animal protein category. It strikes me the same way putting eggs in with dairy does – not many cows I know of lay eggs or chickens that you can get milk out of. If you have never prepared or eaten rabbit before (which is why you wouldn't know it tastes like chicken), then you may need to have the following WARNING: Depending on what form you buy it in (ground, boneless cuts, whole fryers, etc.) it can look EXACTLY like cat. This can be very horrifying with no forewarning, especially to cat lovers. That is why I had to make my very first rabbit dishes with boneless pieces...then it looks just like pieces of chicken breast. I apologize to you if I just grossed some of you out, but I felt it was better to warn you than leave you open for a possible shock later.
Okay, now you have these two new ideas to try, but, what about the PRICE of these gourmet items? Where I live (the PNW of the USA), ostrich is about twice the price of “clean” hamburger. AB’s are not supposed to be consuming a lot of red meat, so to me, it does not break the bank to have a serving of it now and then when I REALLY want a hamburger on the grill on Memorial Day weekend or the 4th of July. As to the rabbit, humanely raised rabbit is no more expensive than free-range chicken. This means that if the chicken’s not on sale, and the rabbit is, then the rabbit is actually cheaper! While I did not suggest pheasant be used as a substitute for anything I can tell you that for us it comes out about the same as the ostrich. I am hoping that as more and more people want these products that the price will eventually come down…I did not say I was holding my breath, just that I am hoping. For those that hunt or have friends/relatives that hunt (which I do), there is also that possibility. Another possible price control strategy would be to buy more than you could use and split the order with other people…sometimes this has gotten me a better price per pound.
Various vinegars are another item that generally needs to be replaced. They are commonly used in making mustards, salad dressings, mayonnaise, some marinades, and even a few candies and desserts. These items are often the very place that the unique flavor of a dish comes from. So if you lose the goo then you lose the flavor…why bother making it then? If I’m going to be eating this way the rest of my life, then it had better be tasty. Time for a bit of chemistry now: vinegar is acidic just like tomato, citrus fruits, and wine. It is the acid that is what the recipe really needs so what you do is substitute the type of acid that you should not have with one that you can. For instance, if you wanted to make basic vinaigrette that traditionally includes red or white wine vinegar you could substitute red or white wine. If you wanted to make a mayonnaise or aioli sauce you could substitute lemon juice. How much? Generally, you use the same amount that you would have used of the original acid that you are replacing so if you originally needed two tablespoons of vinegar you would use two tablespoons of the new ingredient.
What about those cans of cream of X that are used as a base for sauces that go into casseroles like tuna noodle casserole and that green bean thing you make for the holidays? You can make more variations of the tofu based sauce that I mentioned back in my blog about investment cooking two days ago than manufacturers make types of cream of mushroom, celery, or chicken soups. That one little recipe is a real gem in my opinion. Soft (silky) tofu can also be used to replace many other cream type items…it’s good in shakes for just one example. Usually the manufacturers of the products have recipes on their websites with ways to use their product(s). This can open up a whole new range of recipes and tastes.
I feel the best way to look at all the foods that you now should not be using is like this: These new food rules are going to make you try new foods that you otherwise would have missed completely had you not been “forced” to try them. Another way to say that is this: What if you had gone your entire life without ever tasting your current favorite food because you had been too hung up on the flavors of something else to ever try whatever it is that you currently really like to eat? You never know…you just might find yourself some terrific new taste sensations.
Mood: Wishing my heater worked better
Music: 80's - what else do I listen to???
Ok - I was great during the holidays and now that it's almost February, the dreaded "every-teacher-gets-an-obligatory-heart-shaped-box-of-corn syrup/maltodextrin-laden-chocolates" I've been cheating left and right. My main meals have been very healthy, scallops w/ olive oil & garlic pasta Saturday night at a fancy restaurant on the island; a lamb wrap at my friend's b-day bash on Friday and a slice of her eggplant & goat cheese pizza (yummy!!!) and Sunday we had Chinese with an out of town friend, resisted my once favorite S&S pork for general tso's tofu with white rice.
But then.....your at school and there's too many cute 4 year olds that want your attention.....or someone wet themselves or someone's hitting or they just don't stop asking questions and all at once too! And at noon you have too feed them lunch but your official break's not 'til 1:30pm and your not a survivalist O (none of my O friend's ever seem to be starving unless they've gone 12 hours without eating) where as me and my A family members start get cranky after 3 1/2 hours of no eating. So.....you take an extra sandwhich that the super nice but overweight school cook fixed. And what does the board of ed provide our school with? American cheese, baloney, hot dogs, chicken nuggets, wonder bread, "extra heavy mayo"(actually says that on the label), cans of fruit overflowing with corn syurp, corn, and she always cooks the vegetables (and breakfast eggs) with lots of black pepper. Oh and lots of Orange Juice (why do we have like 10 cans of oj for every 1 can of pure pinapple juice they send????)
So.....I'm feeling bloated and have no one to thank but myself. I didn't have to take that fried (and you know they don't have olive oil) baloney & American cheese sandwich on wonderbread w/ mayo today. Or the second one and certainly not the third one. The funny thing is, I find, even after I eat like 3 of these.....when I eat avoids, I'm still hungry after wards and then usually craving some sweets (and unless they're from my house - there are NO good sweets in that school)
So, I just have to be more prepared and keep helathy snacks (like ryvita crakers and dried pinapple) in my apron pockets. Breakfast this morning was some lovely mixed grain oatmeal (that I brought from home) and left over salmon from dinner last night. Fish for breakfast your thinking? Not so strange in other countries and us AB's are supposed to have large breakfast's so we're not tempted by those school lunches I suppose....:-D
Hello BTD's... My apologies for such a late entry. My computer is fried, my car is quite imobile (clutch finally burnt out on the ol 94 Acura Integra-30 degrees below F weather has not helped matters...), and life is quite upside down at the moment. Fear not though, Kings and Queens! As soon as I get the ol' Dream Machine up and runnin' again, I'll be back with an excellent blog that'll get under your skin...
Be back soon. And... Bless you all!
Off to the Hu-Hot Mongolian Grill for lunch! Spinach, cilantro, broccoli, tofu, black beans, snap peas, celery, peanuts, and some confounded sauce consisting of sesame oil, garlic broth, ginger juice, and lemon and lime... MMMmmm... Later~
I have experimented for the past few months on types of exercise, degree of difficulty, and heart rate. I have found for my Type O body, that I absolutely require heavy weight lifting that has an aerobic quality and aerobic exercise that keeps my heart rate above 160. I also need to exercise every day.
If I don’t get this type of exercise, I immediately start to put on weight and my body starts to get sore and stiff. My A Husband and I started doing a DVD exercise series before Christmas called P90X. It is a series of 12 DVD’s that combine weights, Plyometrics, Kenpo, Yoga and Core type exercises. My husband’s body couldn’t take the pounding and stress even though he is in excellent shape. His body couldn’t recover from the exercise and he was experiencing joint pain and reinjuring old hockey injuries. I then found him a DVD set that suited him better. It is a combination of Pilates, Yoga and resistance training using resistance bands. He is finding the deep aches are gone and he is able to sleep better at night.
My O children need lots of exercise every day. During the summer, they play on the trampoline, swim in the lake and generally run around. In the winter, it is a bit more difficult but the nights they snowboard, I am guaranteed happy, cheerful boys the next morning. Their schools still have phys ed and recess everyday so I know they get at least 1 additional hour throughout the school day.
I have finally learned through my husband’s experience, that exercise has to be chosen as carefully as foods!!!
A reader has asked to know what my favorite rice dish is. Since the answer obviously involves a recipe, I decided to answer in a blog. That way, the recipe gets shared with more people who might like it.
The answer is (drum roll, please): Fried Rice.
My favorite way to prepare fried rice is:
2 Tablespoons of any neutral flavor compliant oil (I like to use canola oil) OR water as needed
½ Cup EACH, diced carrot and green peas (if you use frozen you do not need to thaw them)
½ Cup of any compliant mushroom(s)*, sliced
½ Cup onion, cut into any shape you want as long as it’s small enough to eat in one bite
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root or ground ginger (I think the fresh tastes better, but both work)
½ teaspoon dry mustard (mustard powder)
3 Cups of cooked and WELL CHILLED rice, broken up into grains (not hunks, chunks, balls, or blobs)
3-4 eggs, slightly beaten OR 1-2 eggs, slightly beaten and 1 Cup of cooked, diced dark turkey meat (I
prefer not to use ground turkey, but it will do in a pinch)
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon soy or tamari sauce (personally, I like Yamasa brand soy the best, but I
have also used tamari and it tastes fine, too)
dark sesame oil for the blood types that can have it
1-2 green onions, green and white part, sliced thin using a diagonal cut (optional garnish)
Prep all of the ingredients before you actually start making this recipe (cup up the vegetables, find and measure out the spices, crack the eggs into a bowl and beat them a little, etc.)
Preheat the neutral oil over medium heat in a large pan. If you chose to use water, start out with about ¼ Cup, but have more water easily accessable to add to the pan as needed because it will evaporate before you are done cooking.
When the oil (or water) is warm, add the vegetables. Sprinkle them with the ginger and mustard. Mix everything together very well in the pan.
When the vegetables are about half as cooked as you would like for them to be, add the cold rice to the pan and mix it into the vegetables. Then, add the turkey meat if you are using it.
When the rice has had time to reheat, push everything in the pan off to one side and add the eggs. Let them sit and cook for a bit in the pan, then start moving them around a bit like you are making scrambled eggs, but try not to mix them into the rice and vegetables.
Once the eggs are almost cooked, gently mix them into the rest of the items in the pan.
Sprinkle the soy sauce (or tamari) over the rice mixture.
Place ¼ of the mixture onto or into your serving dish.
If sesame oil is not an avoid for your blood type, sprinkle the top with a bit of oil, if
sesame oil is not a good idea for your blood type then just skip this part.
Garnish the top of the rice with some of the green onion. Serve with additional soy sauce
*if this meal is intended for blood types that should have different types of mushrooms these can either be left out of the recipe entirely or you can cook them separately in another pan (or pans) and then mix the correct type of mushroom into each serving (just before adding the green onions if you are using them).
NOTE: As you get more familar with this recipe, if you do not use a non-stick pan, you can cook this much faster on a high heat setting. DO NOT increase the cooking temperature until you feel that you are ready to do so...if you do not give yourself time to familarize yourself with this dish, you could easily set of the smoke alarm.
Fried rice, like may foods, has many recipes. As far as I know, it was originally invented to use up left overs. That meant it had to be a very flexible or adaptable recipe. Recipe adaptations are VERY important to the BTD-er. Remember all those lovely recipes I asked you not to toss a few blogs back? That is what you do with them whenever possible...but that’s another blog.
This weekend I decided to run a quick $20 test kit on my tap water. Perhaps some things are best left to the imagination or perhaps best left pretending they didn't exist (I've found that out about a lot of things in my life lately). However, I am an investigator, a scientific detective of sorts. The funny thing is that according to my birth chart, this is part of my fate...I've done a great job of making it my destiny.
Well, it's time to call the EPA. For the most part, the water here in the Twin Cities meets standards. But then I did the lead test and pesticide tests. The pesticides were detectable but not considered above limits; however, the lead indicator was equal to the control, which basically means it's higher than it should be. This is not good. It's time to start using the Brita filter again.
The funny thing about all this is that I have direct access to reverse osmotic water all day at work (it's used for reconstituting antibiotics). I never take advantage of it because one day I was reading the description of the spigot where the water comes out of the vial to mix with the drugs, and I discovered that it is made with some sort of weird bacteriostatic substance coating it, to keep it from becoming contaminated. I don't know. But something tells me that this might be the lesser of two evils (vs. lead).
Hmmmmm.....Well, from now on I'll just use the Brita filter. I may invest in some sort of shower filter, too, because I've read that bathing causes the body to absorb more of that stuff than drinking it does. This is some major food for thought. Most don't think of that large external organ called SKIN to be the culprit for such things. But think about it. Think about all the drugs you can slap on with a patch and suddenly your pain is gone, or your hot flashes are gone, or your nicotine cravings are gone. Hmmmm....what else can our skin readily absorb?
This is why I've become so picky about what I put on my body. Everything from creams and lotions to dry cleaning choices to laundry detergents. While it's fun to go into department stores every once in a while and try a new fragrance, the daily coating of the body with that useless synthetic stuff is not highly recommended. Keep it simple is the best philosophy. I'm certainly not the first blogger to discuss this matter. You see, between all of us bloggers, I tend to follow a quote by a dear friend from Iowa I haven't seen in YEARS but one who has touched my life in ways I never dreamed. (OK, that's a bit of an exaggeration but it's worth the memory in my mind because this guy is one of the FUNNIEST people I've ever met!).
"Great minds think alike.....and so do ours."
Thanks Jim. My high school telemarketing summer job of 1995 (gag) would have never been the same without you.
Man, what ever happened to Jim? I should look that crazy dude up on google and see if he's still alive..........
No kidding!!?! Jim is a daddy! Congratulations Jim! Wow, that's gonna be a tall kid!
Visit this nutty man's website at www.jimcoppoc.com and perhaps you'll see him around sometime at a poetry reading near you.
Monday, January 10, 2005
Well, I seem to be falling into the “every 2 weeks, give or take a day or two” blogging pattern. I don’t really like it, but it doesn’t seem to be changing.
Which sort of brings me to the point of this blog: Sometimes it’s best to live with the changes that you CAN make, that DO work for you, rather than to try to do something that DOESN’T work, no matter how much you wish that it would.
Take my experience with the BTD, for instance, as this is very indicative of this point. When I first started, I threw myself into the diet with everything that I had. I was going to be 100% compliant. I was never going to eat avoids again. I was going to keep bennies the complete focus of my eating, throwing in neutrals here and there for variety.
In fact, I know without question, that if I want to lose weight and feel great, the key – THE KEY – is to eschew all starches completely. I don’t do well with starches. I gain weight when I eat too much of them, they make me lethargic, and eating them puts me into a vicious cycle of wanting more and more. Eating starches – all starches – also makes it easier for me to eat sugar, another item that is very, very difficult for me to handle. I have a sweet tooth, and sugar, in any form, always gets me going for more.
For me, starches and sugars are a problem. And yes, I AM a secretor, however, there is diabetes in my immediate family, and I think that my sugar/starch issues stem from that.
Anyway, to get back to my point, there have been a couple of times where I have decided that I would go at the BTD 100%. I would NEVER eat an avoid again! I would keep my diet to 80% bennies and 20% neutrals! I would give up all starches! Perfection! Perfection! Perfection!
It didn’t work. I could do it for a while, but on a day-in-day-out basis, for a lifetime, it didn’t work.
After that, I tried to give up completely. Heck, looking back on blogging, maybe that’s one of the reasons that I decided to stop blogging – because I wasn’t able to do it the way that I “thought” it should be done. I am very impressed with fellow blogger Suzanne Graham. Not only does she seem to follow the diet to a great degree of compliance, she blogs every day! Wow! I need to be like THAT.
But I’m not able to be her. I can only be me. I am beginning to find, now that I am in my 40’s, that I can’t do everything. I have to do what I can. Therefore, I have found that, for me, the best approach to the BTD is to, overall, aim for 80% compliance over the process of a week. Sometimes – actually often – I do much better than that, but that is my goal. I find that it is do-able for me on a long-term basis.
And it seems that a blog every week or two is what is working for me, too. I would like to blog more, and perhaps, some weeks I will. But instead of driving myself crazy, I will do what works for me, and I will be happy with that. Like the old adage says, “Happiness is NOT having what you want, but wanting what you have”.
Quick salmon salad recipe:
OK – I like to have snacky stuff in the refridge at all times, so that if I am hungry, I can reach in and get something compliant that works for me. This is one of my staples.
I take 2 large cans (14.75 oz) of wild caught salmon. I usually use “Honey Boy” brand because it is wild caught and available everywhere. I like to use one can of the Fancy Sockeye Red Salmon, and one of their Pink Salmon (I think that it is the “Chum” salmon). I use the sockeye because I figure that a deeper colored fish might have more nutrients. I could be wrong on that, so use whatever you like. Just be sure that it is wild caught.
I refrigerate the cans so that the fish is cold when I make the salad, and I simply drain the salmon and put it in a LARGE, LARGE bowl. To that I add PILES of finely chopped ORGANIC celery (maybe 5 or 6 large stalks with leaves), parsley (I like the flat Italian style – a half of a large bunch, at least, with stems), green onions (5 or 6 with stems and roots), and cilantro (1/2- 1 whole bunch). I really do mean piles of the stuff. I coarsely chop a whole bunch of walnuts (I keep the bag in my freezer, btw) and throw them in the bowl. Finally, if I’m in the mood, I throw in some chopped up hard-boiled eggs (organic, of course). I often chop all of this by hand, but you can use a food processor too. Once the whole thing is in this bowl, I pour on the organic olive oil and either some lemon juice or some apple cider vinegar. I use far more oil than lemon juice or vinegar. As I add them, I keep stirring up the salad until the salad seems the correct “salad” consistency, and I keep tasting to get the right balance of oil and lemon or vinegar. It takes LOTS of olive oil. If you want, you can use mayo (I like the Veganaise Grapeseed oil – no avoids for O-secretors – it’s in the refrigerated section of most HFSs). Sometimes I use the mayo, sometimes I don’t. Sometimes I mix it up. When it is a consistency that I like I add some organic flax oil and, my special ingredient, some lemon-flavored grapeseed oil from Salute’ Sante’ (http://www.grapeseedoil.com). It is DELICIOUS (I’ve tried other brands – blech!). I then throw on some Braggs Liquid Aminos, some garlic salt, some Herbamare, some onion powder and some sea salt. I taste all of this as I go along, until I get it JUST RIGHT.
Then I dig in. I eat this either on crisp celery stalks or rice crackers. It keeps VERY well in the fridge, and it gives me SO many things that I need.
Hmmm. I’m hungry for some. I’m going to go make a batch RIGHT THIS MOMENT!!!
If you go and check out the ingredients list on almost any premade pizza you will most likely find it full of avoids no matter what blood type you are shopping for. The next logical step is to make your own. You are a busy person and the very fact that you now have to make your own pizza is slowing you down, so you find yourself a box or bag of prepackaged pizza dough/bread mix. As you read the ingredients you will most likely find that it is full of stomachache inducing avoids. You will also most likely find that in addition to fillers and additives, that it contains a type (or types) of flour, possibly some sort of sweetener, a rising agent or two, and perhaps, something to flavor it to make it more interesting.
What can you do? You don’t want the fillers or the avoids, but you do want the convience that a mix offers you. You can decide, before you actually need the dough, to make your own mix. That way you will be in control of the type(s) of flour, rising agent(s), and any additional flavoring components that go into it and leave out all the fillers and avoids. This is why it is good to know about the second type of investment cooking.
To make your own pizza, you could look up the recipe for the Basic Pizza Dough that is found in Cook Right For Your Type (page 178 of my copy) and then make it every time that you want pizza. But there is a faster way than that - remember that mix you decided to make. Here’s whatcha do before you will need the dough: Get yourself a mixing bowl. Put the yeast, salt (use sea salt if you can, it’s better for you), flour and if you want extra flavor, 2 Tab. of dried Italian herbs and ¼ teaspoon of garlic powder into the bowl. Use a whisk, fork, spoon, or whatever to throughly mix up the items that you just put into the bowl. Next, carefully transfer all of the ingredients you have just mixed into a resealable plastic bag. Gently squish out as much of the air as possible from the bag and close it. Next, get a piece of paper and write down all of the items (and their amounts) that you did NOT put into the bag. On the same piece of paper make an additional note to yourself to be sure to use extra-warm water (but not HOT-if you see steam coming off the water, you’ve gotten it too hot and will need to let it cool down some. If you don’t cool it down, you will still end up with a tasty dough, but it won’t rise and so it will be very dense/heavy because the heat will have killed the yeast). Using warmer temperature water (about 115*F if you have a cooking thermometer) will make it so that your yeast will still come out of it’s dormant state even though you will not be proofing it in warm water first becaues the yeast is now all mixed up with the other ingredients. Tape the list securely to the bag. Guess what! You now have PIZZA DOUGH MIX to use whenever you want to.
To make this investment cooking have even bigger rewards all you have to do is multiply the DRY ingredients by however many times you want, mix them up and stash them in a container or more bags. Now, you have LOTS of pizza dough mix(es). Now, I need to give you two WARNINGS: you will have to make one mix according to it’s original dry amounts first and then measure the amount that it produces and write that quantity down on the list of the amounts of wet ingredients that you did not add. That will tell you how much of the dry ingredients to take out of the container when you want to use it. This is also so that if you mix up more than what will fit into one container that you will know how much you will need total from however many bags or containers you end up using to make the recipe each time. The second thing is that you will need to keep track of how many times you multiplied the recipe so that you will know how many times you can make the recipe before you will and need to make more.
If you have some freezer space you're not using you can take this to another level. Sometimes when you make the pizza dough, make more dough than you actually need (just like I suggested you do with the rice in yesterday's blog). Instead of making extra pizzas, you will cook extra of the plain dough (read no sauces or toppings of any kind). After the plain dough has been cooked and cooled you have PREMADE PIZZA SHELLS/CRUSTS that only needs sauce and toppings and a reheat...no need to mess with mixing or rise time for the yeast. When you are sure that extra shells/crusts have completely cooled, slide them into resealable freezer bags and put them in your freezer (if you put more than one crust in a bag, put a piece of parchment paper in between them to be sure they don't get frozen together). The next time you feel the need for pizza coming on, go to your freezer, pull out as many crusts as you want and let them thaw. Thaw time can take up to an hour. Once the shell/crust has thawed, just add the sauce and toppings to it, and then heat in your 375*F oven for about 15 minutes.
There are lots of other things that you can do with this recipe that are not covered in the cookbook: like how to make this recipe into warm, creamy, GARLIC STUFFED CHEESE STICKS by adapting it but, yes, you guessed it: that is for another blog.
Yesterday, I mentioned the fact that multi-blood type families need to be the most time efficient. If they try making those lists that I talked about yesterday and then try to find the matches between three or four different blood types plus find recipes to go along with them, it can easily leave them ready to quit this lifestyle before they even get started.
If you are in one of those families, please, do not give up. Instead, try what worked (and still works) for me:
1) make out the grocery list I explained yesterday for each blood type in your family (this may or may not be a list for each family member).
2) make out the menu list I explained yesterday for each blood type in your family (again, this may or may not be a list for each family member). Tip: buy some cheap, clear plastic page protectors to keep each one in. Use the holes that are down the left hand side of the protector that are intended to hold it in a three ring binder to hang it on a hook, thumbtack or some such item in your kitchen for easy reference. If you find that they get in your way, try putting them in a folder and put the folder in your kitchen drawer underneath your silverware.
3) If you have two or three different blood types to work with, decide which ONE of the blood types you will use as your base type to work from. From my own experience, I would suggest this be decided either by chosing the blood type of the person who will be doing most of the cooking and/or shopping or by choosing the O blood type if you have an O in your family. For some reason, which I do not understand myself, the O type is easier (at least for me) to match the other three types with. If you have all four blood types to take into account then I would suggest that you pick two to use as two separate bases to work from.
4) Next, match up all the items that the base can have with all the items that each one of the other blood types in your family can have. Mark them with a highlighter. These are the foods that you will need to base your cooking on the most. They will be your “workhorses”. If you are using two bases, pair each base with one other blood group. That will make it so that you are working with two sets of two different blood types. Proceed with each base and the blood type you are matching it with. Use a highlighter to mark the items that match up with each of the corresponding bases. Since you have two bases, you will now have two master lists. One for each pair of blood types that were compared. Compare these two masters to each other to find the ones that they share in common and mark those items as well. Since they may or may not be already highlighted, I would suggest circling the items that you find in common between the two lists with either a different type of pen or a different color. As with the person only using one base, these are now your “workhorses”.
5) The next highlighter step is to compare all the items that are not yet highlighted and find matches between them. You will need a second (or third) color to do this. These are your secondary items and so they will be used the second most often. The items that never get highlighted at all will be needed so do not just discard/ignore them. They are just not as important as those that are highlighted. After you have completed these lists, I would recommend that you make copies of them in an Excel spread sheet. That way you can use the program to designate the different colors and easily change items around should their values change as you get your secretor test results back, a food’s value changes as further research is done, or as your family structure changes because someone is born, moves out to attend college, gets married, or whatever. It also will enable you to print out the lists should you find that you need multiple copies for whatever reason. If you are really feeling inspired, you can make one list per blood type and one list that is ALL of the foods and color code it as well. The optional list that has all of the foods listed needs to have the same versatility that the computer gives you for changing things around should they need it and you can print out one single list to work from rather than all of them should you ever want to later on.
Before you go heading off to the grocery, you will need to check out your herbs and spices cabinet. These are what you will use to flavor the recipes you will create with your grocery items. You do not want to invest your precious time and then spend your hard earned money only to find that you have created something that you would rather feed to the garbage disposal. To give you an idea of what you will need, I recommend looking over a list of recipes that all of the blood types have in common. There is one in the Cook Right For Your Type Cookbook (pages 116 & 117 in my copy). Then, add any relevant items you feel you will need to your shopping list. The reasons that I recommend doing this is because many people are not familar with many of the foods that they find they should be eating and therefore do not know what herbs or spices will compliment what they find at the store and bring home to try. Secondly, many of the foods on the resulting shopping list(s) are not called for in recipes that those of you who already were cooking were using. Lastly, it helps keep it simple for the beginner and/or overwhelmed person(s). Then, and as the saying goes - shop ‘til you drop.
One more thing before I close this blog: please, do not throw out all your favorite familar recipes...there are many ways you can adapt them to your new lifestyle...but that’s another blog.
Well, today there was no drooling and no puking to write about so by default you KNOW this blog will be better than the last one, hee hee!
I have this massive to-do list. One of the things on my to-do list was to finally go to this vacation-share (like a time-share) promotional tour to pick up the free airline tickets/weekend resort gift certificate/restaurant gift certificate, etc. etc. I was sort of dreading it because my mom told me about this horrible time-share promo experience she had a few years back where, as soon my folks let the people know they weren't interested in buying, were treated rudely, despite getting the free gift for sitting thru the presentation.
Well, my experience, thank goodness, was nothing like that of my mom's. And to be quite honest, this is a company I'd recommend to anyone who knows they want to go on at least a week's vacation to a resort once a year. In fact, if I myself were at a different point in my life, I might consider owning a piece of the pie but, hey, let's face it folks, I can hardly commit to a shampoo, let alone a life-long vacation commitment!!! The company is Bluegreen Vacation Club and they seem to be a good company for one's vacation needs. From many standpoints, this would have been a very good deal, this vacation package thingy, but I'm just not ready to jump into something like that! The rep who explained the system to me was very cool. She practices reiki. While I'm sure she's disappointed that her talking to me did not end in a nice fat commission, I am thinking about going to have some reiki done in the near future. Some meetings happen for a reason.
The greatest part about going to this promo (besides the free stuff) was that it happened to be located right near the Mall of America. It has been so long since I really went shopping. And tonight, it was nothing to write home about. After taking a quick late afternoon lunch at the food court (Japanese fast food place had miso soup filled with plump tofu, yum!) I headed to one of my favorite locations that satisfies the petite Virgo.
For the first time this year, I not only did very little fall shopping but also very little xmas shopping as well. The materlialist in me, the girl who loves shopping, is slowly transcending toward a greater purpose. I think it all started when I decided to cancel my subscription to Lucky Magazine last year. I used to LOVE that magazine and a part of me still does. But it's just not the same magazine it was when I first subscribed. In the beginning, you didn't have celebrities on the cover. It wasn't targeting teens but instead twenty somethings. This has changed and no longer did I enjoy reading it.
Secondly, as I've gotten older, my attitude toward the fashion industry has become a bit of a hostile one. I'm petite and it's extremely difficult to find trendy clothing in petite sizes, readily available, that is. Ann Taylor is the closest I get. Banana, JCrew, all those other places only have sizes online. What good does that do when you need something right away? And how annoying is that when you have to return things? I've practically boycotted almost all the places where I used to shop. They are of no use to me when I have to make a special trip to a tailor just to wear the stuff off the hanger!
The other issue I have, as many do with the fashion industry, is that I think they make women feel like S**T and do nothing but confuse them instead of give them a true sense of self-confidence. Open up Teen Vogue (my 14 yr old sister has a subscription). On one side you have this serious article about eating disorders, depression, and then you turn the page and see an anorexic-looking model sporting the latest fashions. Or, OK, here's my favorite one about Lucky magazine (and other magazines that "claim" they are not targeting teens...): alcohol and cigarettes, especially all the designer flavored types, are heavily advertised. So, now our young skin is wrinkly and dehydrated from all that booze and smoke and now we need to buy that $75 face cream promoted on the next page? Hmmmm.....
Well, I've come to peace with these things in many ways. First, I don't give into the fads as best I can. Yes, sometimes it's tempting, but the bottom line when you look at a shoe or an article of clothing like it's the biggest decision you'll ever make in your life, you have to step back and say, OK, is this really going to matter six months from now? Really? Do I REALLY need this thing? I've come a long way from when I used to be a slave to clothes. In freeing myself, I'm also making a contribution along with the minority of Americans who do not wish to enslave others in third world countries where this stuff is made.
When I do buy things like this, I try to buy them on sale. Not because I'm trying to save money as much as I know that whether I buy the stuff now or later when it's on sale, that 14 year old who made the coat won't see the profits either way so why let the big guy get a piece? That being said, I needed a good transition winter/spring coat since I messed up the fake fur lining on my old one and found a very nice petite sized coat today at Ann Taylor for a fraction of the price I would have paid before Xmas. The other stuff in the store was very cute. But I just didn't need it. I didn't even try it on.
Before I began typing this, I just ate a lovely wild rice deli concoction from Linden Hills co-op. It had some apples, mustard, nuts. Quite yummy. So here I am, following a great diet, have a great figure, but have very little desire to wear the trendly little clothes that show them off. What's wrong with me??
Nothing. I'm just a virgo.
Mood: Super Happy!!!
Music: White Noise.....
After far too long of a haiatus (sp?) I' am soooo glad to be typing again!!! My wedding last October was wonderful....October 11th was a perfect day here in NY.......sun was bright and the air was crisp. The official pictures STILL haven't come back yet but that's another blog.....
The diet is treating me better than ever and over the holidays I maintained very well. My A mother still marvels at how I do without chicken or corn. For those starting, it might seem impossible but believe me, it's not. The two most important "fall back" foods for me are tuna and turkey. Very excessible and easy to prepare. Tofu is also a god send when ordering take-out at work. Even if it's not on the menu, try asking them to substitute it in your favorite Chinese dish. I almost always am pleased with the results. Rice and salads are also very filling. My O father-in-law still asks me if I want some beef or shrimp EVERY time we visit (he's always messing around in the kitchen....) but just last week he seems to finally have remembered and made some Puerto Rican Fried Cod just for me while everyone else had shrimp. What a sweetheart.....:-)
So much to do.....still have so many thank you notes to still write all these months later. So sorry if you wrote me a comment and I never got back to you. Between being just too busy in October and computer crashes, it was impossible to function through this forum. Can't wait to hear how you all are doing!
My family and I ski every Sunday from the first weekend in December to the first weekend in May, and I make the same menu (by request) every Sunday. We always go to Sunshine Village in the Canadian Rockies where the majority of the terrain lies above the tree level, so the views can be magnificent on a sunny day. Tomorrow is supposed to have a high of -16C or +3F with snow, so I don’t think there will be any need for sunscreen, maybe Vaseline to protect the skin from wind burn!!!
I decided to take skiing lessons for the first time in my 30+ years of skiing as I have made a decision to “Do the Dive” this year. Delirium Dive is an incredible natural bowl of extreme skiing which is accessible by a couple of lifts and a nasty hike along a ridge. One must bring Avalanche equipment and be trained in avalanche rescue to be able to ski it. I have to do it this year because I turn 45 and my 8 year old has been deemed competent to go down it on his snowboard and I can’t let my baby go down without me!! My 13 year old did it 2x last year (when he was 12) and was exhilarated by the experience.
So on to the Sunday menu, my family’s blood types are as follows:
Mom: O non
Dad: A sec
Son 1: O sec
Son 2: O non
Since we have to ride a gondola from the parking lot to the village, we need to be able to pack the food in a couple of packs, as well as bring up helmets, boots, boards and skis, so we need to pack efficiently. We also need to pack our own water, as the hill has severe water limitations, even with all the snow!!! We usually have 10-14 at our table, the majority are teenage boys who ditch their sandwiches and noodle soups to eat with us. My husband always jokes that I can't cook for 4, I have a physical need to cook for 10 or more; I love to have people share our food. We have been deemed the Gourmet Family on the hill!!
Our standard menu follows:
Hot chicken wings (in a large fry pan boil wings in water and hot sauce for about 20 minutes, then broil in oven until skin gets crispy) I usually do this on Saturday night and then we bring up to hill in an insulated backpack.
Raw Carrots and broccoli (for son 2)
Almonds and Hazelnuts
Beef Sausage from the German Butcher
Spelt Cookies (from Lakeside Bakery which specializes in Gluten Free/Wheat Free Baking)
Fruit in Season and by Type
European Chocolate (no milk type)
4 Litres Water
It seems that everyone I know has issues with not enough time. This appears to affect blood type dieters especially since most all convenience foods are off limits to us. For the blood type dieter who is relatively new to this type of eating it can be especially true. If you compound that with a multi-blood type household it can be overwhelming. Not enough time to exercise. Not enough time to plan a menu(s) and shopping list(s). Not enough time to cook after returning from the grocery. Not enough time (or even energy sometimes) to eat after they are done in the kitchen…the list could go on, but I am sure you get the idea and I feel it’s a safe bet that you’ve had this experience yourself regardless of whether you are an old hand at the blood type diet lifestyle, are just getting started with it, or are just considering the possibility of maybe giving it a try.
Things that worked best for me (still do for that matter) actually required even more time on my part, but once they were done, have saved me an immeasurable amount of time.
The first thing I did was type a list in Word that was divided into each of the different food categories. Under the name of each category I put in how much I was generally supposed to have per week so I would know how much of each group to buy. Next, I typed in the appropriate foods that I liked and that are available in my particular part of the world under each category header. I now had a reusable, easy to edit, shareable with relatives, and printable as many times as I want GROCERY LIST!
The second thing I did was divide a new page in Word into two columns. The first column had the days Sunday through Wednesday listed on it. The second column had Thursday through Saturday and a ‘Notes to Self” part. Under each day of the week I put a form of exercise that I enjoy (or at least would be relatively not as hard to get myself to do). Next, using the suggested portion sizes and frequencies in Live Right For Your Type, I listed out the food groups that I planned to eat from that day. Some were no brainers like the veggies and fruits because you need them every day. Some were really easy like the eggs & cheese…I knew I wanted to max them out (at least initially) because I wanted to hang on to as much/many of them as I possibly could. To stretch them out as long as possible, I placed one portion each on Tuesday and Thursday and the remaining two portions of each on the weekend days to save them up as something to look forward to…sorta like a treat. Then I added in the rest of the groups. I put the groups in the order that I knew I should be eating them in. For example, we AB’s do best if we have our largest meal in the morning and then gradually have smaller and smaller meals the later it gets in the day. We also benefit from having some protein in the first meal of the day as well. I, personally, like to use food combining (or separating, depending on how you look at it) and know that veggies seem to have had a habit of getting set aside in favor of grains and such so I put their group and the animal based protein items at the top of each list. Next came beans because they would be good for lunch and I would be reading through the upper part of the list to get to them so I would be reminded of the veggies, again. Grains followed beans as an idea for supper. I sprinkled in the fruits, nuts, and beverages for snacks. I put oils/fats in last because it was unlikely that I would forget them. Under the “Notes” section, I typed my optional beverage items and reminders to drink my water and green tea and to take my supplements. Now, I had a reusable, easy to edit, shareable with relatives, and printable as many times as I want MENU, EXERCISE CHART, and REMINDERS all in one!
Because I had written the weekly totals for each group with the specific food items on the grocery list, I could go buy the best priced items I found, in the correct quantities for the week. When I got them home, I could then mix and match them however I wanted through out the week as they appealed to me from day to day in the quantities that I needed since they were listed by portion size under each day. Because I had each day preplanned with what groups I would be eating from, I would not run into the trap of eating all of the items I preferred to eat all at the beginning of the week and then be left with, well, the leftovers…it would be nutritionally balanced all week.
The next time saver, again, involves a lot of time at first, but saves time in the long run. It does not, however, involve a computer. I will save it for another blog though since this is only my first one and I see I have already written over an entire page.
Oh yes, that Sun-opposition-moon component of my personality came out last night with a BANG in trying to make such a LIFE-ALTERING decision, haha. I have been using trial sizes of facial products for months and months like some gypsy who didn't have a permanent home. OK, in a way, with all the work and holiday travel I recently completed, I sort of was a gypsy, but here I am, back in good ol' MPLS trying to feel grounded in the new year.
So I journeyed from co-op to Whole Foods and finally decided on a line of facial products to get me through the dry winter yet keep my pores (which for a few significant reasons have been clogging more within the last few months). EO makes a line called, "Everyday face" for normal/combination skin. I loved the ingredients and the way they smell so much that I bought the whole line last night! Verdict? AWESOME! My skin feels remarkably soft. Now for my dry chapped lips and puffy eyes, and did I mention my dry scratchy throat? Time to bust out the echinacea tea!
I am leaving the "welcome" header up at the top of my blog indefinitely to remind people to PLEASE not write any QUESTIONS in my comment log, only rhetorical COMMENTS! Please go to the forum for any questions. Eventually, when I have what appears to be a normal computer again (Mac's in the shop and this dinosaur aka four year old Dell is about to die any minute) I will reverse this request. Thanks and enjoy reading. Good health to all!
PS-To ShaSha (the famous bread maker who made a special guest appearance in my comment log): there must be some strange psychic phenomenon because I just bought the spelt ginger snaps at Whole Foods again last night! Yum!
YUM! Why I didn't think of this before is beyond my comprehension! The most wonderful intermingling of tastes with such ease in cooking, yes folks, one omega-3 egg grilled lightly in ghee and then topped with a spoonful of pesto sauce from the Wedge! Fabulous! Duh! So simple! And so Blood Type healthy! Basil, walnuts, parsley, olive oil, garlic, sea salt. That's about it in the pesto but it's so good for you!
Also drank my fiber goop (see very first blog last year for details) and green tea with half a lemon. I also am experimenting with flower essences based on my astrological profile. The We'moon on the Wall '05 Calendar suggests Purple Moonflower for everyone in 2005, also with Filaree for Virgos (sun sign) and Fawn Lilly for Pisces (moon sign). These were also put in my tea.
Really that's all I have to say at this point. I'm currently exploring the possibilities of getting enrolled in either community college or the university. I'm planning to study one semester of college physics. If I want to go to ND school someday, this is the ONLY course I have yet to take. I may wait another semester though. We'll see. Thinking about going back to college, even if for only a course or two is exciting and a little nerve-wracking. Looking at all the admissions requirements, I'm sort of laughing at the bureaucracy of it all. All those transcripts I'll need to have sent as well as a HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA?!? I don't even know where mine is! What does it even look like?!? Hmmmm....this will be a project in and of itself...
Events in south-east Asia in the last week have simply horrified and sickened me. It seems beyond belief that an earthquake and resulting tsunami could cause the instant death and destruction of so many thousands of people. The images I have watched every day on television have been haunting and heart-rending.
In one way I have been removed from the scenes of devastation by virtue of my geographic location; in another, I am plunged into the midst of great pain and suffering by virtue of technological advances – and here I think of both the internet and the news media. These events have been very sobering. Living in Toronto, I am surrounded by so many people who came from the parts of the world that have been damaged so seriously, and it is impossible not to identify with my friends and neighbours who daily await news of the fate of their friends and relatives so far away from them.
One of the effects of these recent events has been to truly bring home the fact that all of the comforts and treasures with which I am surrounded daily mean absolutely nothing in the face of a life-or-death situation of such magnitude. I also appreciate that although I must be infinitely careful with the foods I ingest, I am incredibly fortunate to be able to pick through my dietary choices whilst others much less fortunate than I are happy to accept any food of any description in an area where safe drinking water is non-existent, shelter has been swiftly removed, and no family has been spared the suffering of losing at least one loved one.
At this time of great anguish, I offer my thanks that by virtue of having been born in Canada, I have so far been spared the incredible difficulty of living first-hand through a war of any description, that I have more than enough food to eat in my kitchen every day, and that I can spend my days focusing on healthy choices vs. unhealthy choices in terms of food, knowing that my drinking water is very safe. I also join in prayer with the hundreds of thousands who ask for assistance and intervention in this incredible example of human suffering which has changed the lives of so many forever.
My thoughts and prayers go out to the victims of the earthquake/tsunami disaster. It is incomprehensible how many were lost. My hope is that some rich philantropist funds and puts together a database for the missing in hopes that family members that were separated and are still alive will re-unite.
The holiday season and New Year began both wrong and right for Erika and Grubster. Potholes in the road of life. It is a process, this is what we must remember. Re-birth constantly occurs within ourselves and between us. I will leave it at that but say that I had a wonderful time on the 'Eve with Grubster. He took me ice skating at the Depot rink (www.thedepotminneapolis.com). It was wonderful, innocent, yet so romantic. Especially when we tried to ice dance and toppled over one another! A young man at the ice rink made a very sneaky marriage proposal on ice. When they were announcing the winners of the weekend getaway drawing, the announcer told everyone to get off the ice for the announcement. Next thing we knew the young man and young lady went out on the ice and the man got down on one knee. It was so beautiful to watch the tears fill her eyes as they exited the rink.
Shortly before the countdown, the concession stand was about to close. I ended the year in the worst possible BTD way: with a hot dog. Before that, at the Marriot Courtyard (connected to the rink), Grubster and I sat by the fire with a hot cider filled with Amaretto and Chambord (me) and Amaretto and Captain Jack (him). When the Zamboni machine tooks us away from the ice, we again went for a second drink: Port wine (me) and beer (him). The bar was smoky. A strange drunk man began to pester Grubster, first asking him if he voted for Kucinich (WHAT?), then went into how the two of us need to be nice to each other (good advice), then how if there's ever anyone who makes our lives miserable he can hook us up with someone to ruin their career or break their legs or arms (OK.....) and how he's in the mafia and how his life is much life that of Tony Soprano's (oh dear).
This had to be the strangest encounter I've ever witnessed. We walked away trying to figure out if he was for real or just pulling our leg. Either way, I don't think I want to know, haha. Mind my own business...........well, we hypothesize he was repressed/bi-curious or something and regrets settling down with a wife and kids, and now longing for alternative adventure, trying to get that sense of adventure from my boyfriend. I mean, really, why else would someone come up to him and say, "Kucinich! You voted for Kucinich, right?" then corrects himself by going into how he is a republican himself when he realizes that Grubster wasn't aware of who Kucinich was b/c he didn't follow the primaries. Very strange and random indeed. For better or worse, Grubster falsely goes off on the Gaydar a lot. It's kind of funny.
Well, today we had a wonderful lunch at French Meadow. Grubster ate the omelet special and I ate the zone omelet. I felt as if I was truly starting the New Year off right. We then ordered a slice of capuccino torte for Grubster's birthday. It was rich and we could not finish it. But it was good.
This year, my health resolutions are as follows:
-Adhere to the BTD more consistently but forgive self for wandering off the path from time to time.
-Cook more at home in order to explore alternative grains and minimize harmful additives.
-Drink more water!
-Utilize healing herbs to promote inner harmony and balanced energies
-Take BTD vitamins and other supplements more consistently
-EXERCISE! Seriously, Erika, it's time! Only 2 1/2 more years till my thirties. Must build bones and heart muscles.
-Meditation/deep breathing/prayer once daily, ideally in a group setting
-Do at least one colon/liver cleanse this year when it is convenient
So far, those are the biggies. I hope everyone else had a safe and fun holiday season and appreciates the blessings in their lives. May all your New Year's wishes and resolutions hold true.