A couple of bloggers have mentioned becoming obsessed with food because of the Blood Type Diet. I asked myself, "Am I obsessed?" The answer is no. The reason I know the answer is no is because I have been obsessed with diet and exercise before.
When we got married, my husband decided I should run. I could not even jog Â¼ mile when I started, but I grew to love it. I planned my evenings around our run together. One day my mom called me at the office. She was fixing one of my favorite foods for dinner and invited us to come by their house after work. The first thought that crossed my mind was, "If we go, I can't run." That was obsessive. I recognized it. I forced reasonableness back into my exercise plans.
When I read my first nutrition book and became a health nut I was obsessive. One reason I often blog that people are more important than food is because of hard lessons I learned back then. Once I was part of a group that went to clean the house of a lady in difficult circumstances. To thank us she had prepared bologna sandwiches on white bread. I snubbed them because they weren't healthy. I saw in her eyes that I hurt her feelings. At holidays I remember rejecting traditional foods because they weren't made with whole grains. Alienating family and friends over food is obsessive. (Funny, now I hardly eat those whole grains I was so obsessed with then)
Because I'm the mom, I'm responsible for food preparation for my family, but my world is much bigger than my kitchen! I'm involved in activities that have nothing to do with food or exercise. I blog in the hopes that I can encourage someone who is trying to make the Blood Type Diet work in a busy family. But, the BTD is not my life. It is a means to an end. It gives me energy and helps me feel good so I can do all the other things I want to do in my life.
Today is my one year anniversary on the Blood Type Diet. In that year, I have never thrown caution to the wind and willfully pigged out on avoids. I am 98.5% loyal to the diet at home. There are a few packaged items that have an avoid listed near the bottom of the ingredient list, but those are the only exceptions at home. In restaurants, I make the best possible choices. I do not use the fact that I can't find a completely compliant meal as an excuse to order a really bad choice.
In social situations I may eat a few avoids. There is no point in offending someone who has prepared a meal for me. People say "I love you" with food, and rejecting what they have cooked often equates to rejecting them. There is also a psychological benefit to not using the word "never" about food. I don't have to say I will "never eat another piece of pizza." I don't eat it at home, but sooner or later friends will invite us over for pizza and a movie. When they do I eat a lot of vegetables off the veggie tray and a little pizza. I remember how good it used to taste. I can enjoy a homemade dessert without doing my health any lasting damage.
In my year on the diet I have seen lots of changes in my health. No more indigestion or GERD; no more bursitis in my shoulder, no more warts. Headaches are rare and mild. I've lost 15 pounds and a dress size. My muscle tone is much improved. I have more energy and require less sleep at night.
How am I celebrating the day? Breakfast was my usual fruit and nut mixture. My husband chose a seafood restaurant for lunch after church. Most of the entrees were breaded and fried, so I took a chance on the gumbo. It was excellent and loaded with beneficial vegetables. Dinner will be a ground beef patty, leftover turnip greens, and calabaza squash with Italian seasoning. As soon as the sun goes down, I'll run two miles.
My son was born on Ronald Regan's birthday. I have a vivid memory of being in the hospital room with my husband and my baby, watching the State of the Union Speech. We were indescribably joyful that day holding our precious baby, only a few hours old. The President seemed to speak to us when he talked about the sacredness of life. He had the same hope for the future of America that we had for the future of our family.
I was not sad when I heard of the former President's death. I have a firm faith that those who trust in Christ will have a much better life in heaven. I smile to think that after a 10 year battle with disease, he is fully restored in the presence of God. But watching the funeral today did make me realize how much I will miss him.
It's the character of the man that set off these feelings. He believed in individual responsibility and individual opportunity. That's the same quality that makes me adamant that I don't want a doctor or an insurance company or a government bureaucracy managing my health. He was both witty and tenacious, qualities needed by everyone, including school teachers and moms. He believed that God had a purpose for his life. And millions of people now living in free countries enjoy the fruit of the pursuit of that purpose.
There will never be another Ronald Regan, but I pray that God will raise up leaders around the world who will emulate his stand for morality, freedom, individual responsibility, optimism and faith.
My daughter and her friends send each other e-mail with interesting trivia and jokes. Today she showed me one called "Bet you didn't know this." One of the items said "Intelligent people have more zinc and copper in their hair."
I said that while the statement was true, the reason why it was true was more important. We looked up copper and zinc in a nutrition book and found that both minerals are needed for proper brain function. I said, "If you eat healthy food and take your vitamins, then your body has the copper and zinc it needs. When you find copper and zinc in someone's hair, it also means that they are getting enough copper and zinc for their brains, and that means they are able to think better." My daughter eats healthy so she can stay slim. Just then the light dawned - by eating healthy she can be both slim and smart. She likes that idea.
It reminded me of another bit of trivia I read in Reader's Digest: "Doctors are unable to determine the cause of 37% of physical symptoms reported by patients." I suspect the truth is that most of those 37% are people who don't feel good because they are eating foods that conflict with their blood type. How well I remember my doctor finding inflammation in my stomach. But she had no idea why it was inflamed or how to make the inflammation go away. When I started the Blood Type Diet, I stopped being part of that 37%!
You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32
Fellow blogger Paul Buckless often shares recipes, and this week I tried two of them.
When I wrote about cooking kohlrabi, Paul commented, "You can also grate it raw and dress with a little lemon juice & olive oil." I didn't find kohlrabi again until this week. The produce manager told me it wouldn't really be in season until August. The kohlrabi I found was not the freshest, but I bought it anyway, because I really wanted to see if I liked it raw.
It was crunchy and reminded me of cole slaw. There was none of the turnip taste that it had when I cooked it. My daughter turned thumbs down, but my son and I both liked it. Next time I may add more lemon juice or some grated lemon rind. Definitely we like kohlrabi better raw than cooked.
One of my goals for the summer is to get a repertoire of breakfast food that is traditional enough to appeal to my daughter, but good for her blood type. Today I tried Paul's Oat Shortbread Biscuits. An ongoing joke in our family is that if we try something new and it is good we say, "Try it you'll like it." But if it is really outstandingly good, we say, "Don't try it. You won't like it. I'll have to eat it all myself." My daughter was really hungry when she came in from swim practice. When the biscuits came out of the oven, I tasted them first, shook my head and said, "Don't try itâ€¦" She grabbed one, and another, and another. When her brother came in a short time later, he said, "What smells good." She said, "Don't try itâ€¦." and he grinned.
There was only one problem with the Oat Shortbread Biscuit recipe. It may make enough for Paul and Sue, but it was NOT enough for two teenagers. Next time I make a double batch.