Eating for Health, Plant-based eating

Loving My Plants


I’ve been plant-based (attempt # ?) since Jan. 4, 2017.

Can you see the smile on my face?

I’m proud of myself because I’ve been trying, since Jan. 2010, to be fully plant-based.

I think this time, I’m more aware of the injustices happening to animals. I don’t want to contribute to animal cruelty.

Wish me well on my continued journey; and I wish you well on whatever journey you may be traveling.

Alison 🙂

Health and Wellness, Plant-based eating

Powerful Protein Myth


When a plant-based diet is discussed with a meat-eater, one of the most common concerns expressed is, “but what about protein?”

We’ve been tricked by Big Business…convincing generations that:

a) we need way more protein than we do, and

b) the protein must come from meat/dairy and eggs.

60 Second Video: The Protein Myth        by the Vegan Activist

Vegan bodybuilders can attest that our understanding of a great need for protein is in fact, a MYTH, as can animals who grow big and strong just with plants (elephants, rhinos, hippos, bison, and horses).

Find out for yourself…the facts about protein. Use education instead of fear to make your food choices.

Wishing you a healthy journey,

Alison

28 Day Raw Food Cleanse, Health and Wellness, Mental Strength, Weight-loss Record

Wrap up! 28 Day Raw Food Cleanse


I wanted to take a minute to recap how my 28 Day Raw Food Cleanse went (thanks for the reminder, Susan!).

Weight Loss

I felt it was a success, as I lost almost 15 pounds….BUT, I got sick at the tail end of it, so that last five pounds was not really related to the cleanse, I don’t think.

I am now up a few more pounds, but since the cleanse started on Jan. 1, I am still down about 8 pounds.

So, is it a good way to kick start your weight loss? Absolutely!

I think that a 2 or 3 week cleanse would do the same thing, however. It really just gives you a boost.

If I were to modify the 28 day cleanse, I might do something like this:

Week 1: Eliminate all animal products (meat, dairy, eggs) and processed food

Week 2: Continue with above, and also eliminate all added oils and sugar

Week 3: Keep going with above, and eat only raw fruits and vegetables

Week 4: Continue with above and eat only smoothies for the first 4-5 days, followed by fresh pressed juice for 2-3 days

Health and How I Felt on the Cleanse

Here is how my Year-long Goals Sheet looked at the end of January.

SONY DSC

How did I do?

My top row, exercise/move everyday, was on track until I became sick.

My green row, the plant-based goal was solid, for every day of my cleanse!!

My cleanse goal, the third and yellow row, of eating only raw fruits and vegetables was awesome too. Four days I drank a homemade broth, when I was my sickest, and on the last day, I had chickpeas in my salad. Still…pretty good!

The last row is related to my mental health, which is to work on my blog. Now, I don’t expect to see that filled in every day, but I want to see some effort there. I can proudly say, that yes, I put forth an effort to either do research on blogging or health or to actually write a blog post.

I really felt terrific during my cleanse! In fact, as soon as I started to eat cooked food, and to eat some dairy, my mood altered…it dipped. I did not feel as good. Did that stop me from eating more unhealthy food? No.

It is amazing how easily I left the raw food that made me feel great, to eating food that I categorize as unhealthy (pizza, cheese etc.) What is up with that??

I think that as long as we eat unhealthy food, we just want more. It may be a cold turkey thing. Eat none of the crap, and you won’t crave it. I just haven’t been able to pull off the cold turkey thing yet!

cold-turkey-21

Thanks to FoodCourtComics.com, for this great picture!

I continue to struggle to eat the way my mind and heart wants me to. I will not give up.

Wishing you, and me, a healthy journey!

Eating for Health, Mental Strength

How to Beat Cravings in 5 Easy Steps


I’ve been in a slump for the past couple of days, eating off track and not feeling great, mentally or physically.

Today, I typed in “struggling with eating healthy” on Google and found a nifty trick to help those of us who get cravings for the not-so-healthy stuff.

Psychologist, Katie Rickel, has a short video about the 5 Steps to help us deal with cravings. Check them out below if you prefer to see them in print, at a glance. Click here, if you prefer to go straight to her video. She calls them “The 5 D’s”.

5 Steps to Manage Cravings

1. DISTRACT: find something to distract you from the craving. Read, call a friend, do a crossword puzzle, clean up the house, tidy a drawer or your work area, or get online for some inspiration.

2. DELAY: Promise yourself you won’t give in to that craving for at least ten minutes (or pick a different amount of time). This gives you a chance for the craving to subside. If you give in after the delay, so be it, but at least you gave it a real shot! This step may work for you another time.

3. DISTANCE: Get away from wherever you are that is causing the craving. Go for a walk, go outside, go for a drive…just get away from the source of the craving.

4. DETERMINE: Take a second to think about why you are having that craving. What are you really seeking? Is it food you really need? Maybe you’re thirsty. Perhaps you are having an emotion-anger, sadness, loneliness, etc.-something that is telling you that comfort food will solve your problem.

5. DECIDE: Make a decision about whether you are willing to accept the consequences of eating that food-feeling guilty, feeling sick, delaying health or weight loss etc. Then decide. You are giving in, or you’re not. Don’t spend an hour debating it. Either give in, or get out!

These 5 steps sound interesting. I will give that a try next time. Good luck with your cravings…and beating them!

Wishing you a healthy joruney.

Eating for Health, Mental Strength

Ammunition for the Food Battle


How can food have such a hold on us, even when we feel determined to achieve our goals?

There are so many times when I feel terrific and don’t plan to eat any unhealthy food. Then suddenly…WHAM!

pizza

Image from Cliparts.co

I’m down for the count. I’ve lost the food battle, again!

We might not be able to win every battle, but is there a way to prepare for these struggles with food? It helps if you know what you are up against. Then we might have a fighting chance.

Food is Comfort So much of the unhealthy food out there gives us comfort: pizza, chicken wings, potato with butter and sour cream, creamy pastas, popcorn with butter. It makes us feel good!

How to Fight Back? Ask yourself: do you want to rely on food to make you happy? Or, are there other things in life to focus on that give you joy (hobby you love, spending time with friends/family, pursuing goals and dreams)?

Food is Celebration All cultures seem to have food as a focal point of celebrations. Whether it’s cake at a birthday party, a buffet dinner at a wedding or drinks and dinner out to celebrate a promotion, we eat when we celebrate.

How to Fight Back? This one is tricky. I say enjoy the food at celebrations and try to focus on eating healthy at home. Indulge when you are celebrating, but remember to indulge with limits. You don’t have to have three cupcakes…have one.

cupcake13

Image from Clipartlord.com

Food is Addictive Many of the foods we grew up with, and find tasty, are the ones that have addictive qualities. Processed foods that include high levels of fat, salt and/or sugar are some of the culprits we find hard to put down, or that we crave. Foods like potato chips, salted nuts, cookies etc. Even foods like cheese and meat have addictive qualities.

How to Fight Back? if you give up a certain food, you may be able to beat your addiction to that food. If you binge on cookies, maybe cookies should be off limits, period…no weaning off period. Of course, this is easier said than done. But, it is possible.

Food is Social Even when we feel determined to eat well, and have had success for a period of time, it’s difficult to eat healthy foods when we’re in a social situation where everyone else is eating chicken wings and pizza.

How to Fight Back? Eat a healthy portion of food BEFORE you head out to your event. You may not totally stick to the healthy approach, but at least you will have less room in your stomach for the bad stuff. If you are caught off guard and cannot plan, then have a healthy salad first, and then indulge.

Food is Everywhere Even aside from social settings, food that we know is not nutritionally abundant is all around us: grocery stores, advertisements on television or radio or in magazines, recipe postings on social media, billboards as we’re driving, restaurant signs etc. It’s difficult to turn away from all that!

How to Fight Back? Try to look at all the images and words around you as annoying advertisements. Healthy food doesn’t need big billboards. An apple is healthy: you know it, and I know it. Try to look at all the other stuff as an annoying advertisement, calling desperately for you to eat it. It’s desperate because it has little to offer that is good.

Restaurant Outings Even if we eat well at home, it can be very tempting to eat the less healthy choices when we dine out. It is possible, but it means examining the menu and asking your waiter for dishes with substitutions or asking for special requests. Sometimes we don’t want to draw attention to ourselves. Sometimes, we just aren’t sure how to get a healthy meal at a restaurant without ordering a boring salad with no dressing.

How to Fight Back? Look at a menu and see if you can come up with something that will be tasty, but also healthy. You can ask for a pasta in tomato sauce (most restaurants can cover that one), or you can have a salad with dressing on the side. Enjoy the dressing, but in small amounts.You control how much you consume. If you enjoy potato or rice, try to get that with some vegetables. Instead of focusing on your food for your entertainment, focus on the company.

Food as a Treat When we’ve eaten well for a period of time we deem successful (a morning, day, a week, a month) we feel proud of our efforts and reward ourselves with food. We justify eating unhealthy food when we feel we deserve it as a treat or reward.Unfortunately, this can put us right back where were started and keep us on the diet cycle.

How to Fight Back? Choose something other than food as your reward, such as time to yourself to read, get a manicure or have a nice hot bath. Maybe a walk in the park can be a reward or a new piece of clothing.

Need more ammunition?

Educate youself about food. Learn what companies do to make it addictive. Find out more about what’s in your food and about different ways of eating.

Connect with others who also battle with food. Support each other. Learn from one another. You can connect with people you know as well as online, with people you don’t yet know.

Ultimately, we can’t let food win.Stay on guard and keep fighting!

Wishing you a healthy journey.

28 Day Raw Food Cleanse, Weight-loss Record

Day 28 of 28 Day Raw Food Cleanse


Day 28 (Jan. 28)

Morning Weight: up .4 lb; with a total loss of 14.4 lbs since Day 1.

Today is the last day of my cleanse. I miss cooked food, like rice, chickpeas and potatoes. I will probably focus on eating mostly raw for the next few weeks; I haven’t decided what my next phase towards health will be.

Had three jars of smoothies as well as an apple. Again, I just wasn’t that hungry.

I ended the day by having a small salad, part of a salad my daughter couldn’t finish. It did have some chickpeas, so it was not part of the cleanse.

I drank about Âľ litre water today.

Wishing you a healthy journey.

28 Day Raw Food Cleanse, Weight-loss Record

Day 26 of 28 Day Raw Food Cleanse


Day 26 (Jan. 26)

Morning Weight: down .2 lb; with a total loss of 15.0 lbs since Day 1.

Made a green smoothie to start the day, followed by another one later on.

Lunch was a bowl of raspberries and blueberries.

Dinner was a salad with tomatoes, cabbage and raw corn from the cob. Dressing was just half an avocado, mushed up.

I just wasn’t that hungry today. I am still not feeling well.

I drank over a litre of water today.

Wishing you a healthy journey.