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  • Thanks RR, your sophistication in the kitchen played a part in the casserole, giving me the confidence to attempt something more than grilling fish in a pan, credit is due my friend!! It may look like boring brown goo, but is really delicious, that meaty gravy- broth, there's nothing like it. I also slow cooked some chicken with lemon and garlic, hardly haute cuisine but a significant moment, to be handling raw meat with excitement and curiosity.

    Glad to know your success with a change of eating, and wish for that success to continue. I think I may have gained a little weight since eating more freely, but I'm viewing intuitive eating as a long term strategy and allowing time.

    Yes, the whole 'female cycle' and 'shame'; there's almost a taboo around the subject, and definitely some fixed ideas that are ripe for rethink. That our cycles are inconvenient and to be hidden, the source of embarrassment and PMS jokes, and we medicate ourselves to suppress the 'symptoms'. I do think that many aspects health/life are unecessarily pathologised/medicalised; including sexuality, birth and death.
    Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
    Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Journal: Vibrant Life

    Comment


    • Spent the entire day on the sofa (TOTM). I was very tired. There was no pain or discomfort, but definitely 'sensation' and not sensation as in, 'this is pain, but I'm downsizing it mentally to detach'; it was feelings of heaviness around the uterus and that area and the sensations of contractions, but no pain. I really allowed my body to be totally relaxed and let what was happening happen.

      Obv I had to get off the sofa to feed myself and visit the loo, and though it was a cloudy day I sat out on the back step for some fresh air, but mostly just rested.

      I think this deep resting may have something to do with my periods being pain-free lately? Also I think the regular swimming helps, I try to swim right up to it arriving, so the muscles of the abdomen have had a good stretch. And yoga, I dont mention yoga much here, but yoga is always happening.

      I took my meals as usual and my appetite seemed normal, not crazed!! Slow-cooked a butternut squash-carrot soup, I wanted the warm soothing of soup. So that was sweet and starchy and the only carbohydrate fix I needed. Beef casserole just keeps getting better and better. Slow cooked to begin with and reheated it in the slow cooker; t'was a day of slow cooking which perfectly suited my mood. I like to hear that pot gently bubbling.

      Bought some discounted chicken thighs and drumsticks and they needed to be cooked, so in they went, yes into the slow cooker; with lemon quarters, fat garlic cloves and dried organic herbs. First time cooking raw chicken - I was quite surprised by the liquid produced. I knew it must have value so poured it into a glass jar which when cooled went into the fridge. It has a wobbly fatty top layer and clear liquid underneath, will prob scrape the fat off and add the stock to soup, I suppose that the fat is acting like a preservative? Should I eat that too? (the idea of chicken fat is unappealing.)

      GP telephoned to discuss blood test results. I was very curious to know these as had had some disturbing results as a v*gan. GP arranged appointments with endocrinologists and immunologists and I really had not wanted to attend. Obv that was the tipping point for quitting WFPB and migrating here. I cancelled the hospital appts and asked for time to make dietary changes.

      Good news: thyroid, folate, calcium = fine. Kidney sodium had been too low and is now resolved. My ferritin has been worryingly low and despite 3-4 months of liquid tonic (floradix) that has not ameliorated. The doctor marvels at my fitness schedule as I am supposed to be weak and fatigued and dizzy with my numbers. I told her that I have such a strong mental drive to be fit and active that it will override any other consideration!! Mind over matter. Either that or I am flogging myself senseless.

      The plan is obvious: finished witht the v*gan supplements! That was quite literally £40 down the toilet I'm onto Solgar gentle iron from now and the next action point is equally clear: MOAR MEAT!! I might post on the nutrition forum, I'm wondering if it's OK to eat red meat, say 4 -6 oz; 5/6 times per week??

      I asked the doctor about this and she really didnt know and said she thought red meat thrice per week, but I think she was just saying a number, if you know what I mean.

      The other piece of the tests that has bothered me as it's a completely new one, is raised liver function - ALT? I have a nurse friend who is going to talk that over with me, but she was surprised when I told her - as I dont ingest anything that would stress the liver in her opinion (alcohol, toxins, pharmaceuticals) . She wanted to reassure me by telling me that the liver was supremely resilient, that I shouldnt worry. I'm getting a retest in one month.

      I'm not really used to numbers and levels and bio-data, and I have to admit to being somewhat freaked out, and feeling out of my depth and worried about my iron and liver a little bit Today's mind work - not to ruminate over those results!!

      That's a lot of quite personal info, hope that was OK, if you are still here, thank you for the mercy of your attention Any thoughts on iron/liver would be most welcome!!
      Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
      Ralph Waldo Emerson

      Journal: Vibrant Life

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      • I love my slow cooker; I think I would probably starve without it. Definitely use the stock (ie liquid flavor gold) for something, and you can use the chicken fat for cooking if you like. I think it's got really good flavor, and this one will have the flavor of lemons and garlic also. Really good for starchier veg.

        You're in the UK right? With all that quality grassfed beef? Have at it and know how envious I am! That's some of the best stuff you can eat.

        A lot of things can affect iron absorbrion, so it's not just the intake. A healthy gut is necessary, as I seems to be in pretty much all things lately, as is adequate stomach acid. Both of those can be repressed on a vegan diet. With your bit of constipation above, you might want to incorporate some fermented foods and after some time fermentable fibers/prebiotics. A splash of vinegar in warm water before a meal will help increase stomach acid and aid digestion.

        Adequate vitamin C intake helps, I don't know why but that's what everyone/Google says.

        I don't know about the liver, though my first reaction would be mobilization of stored glycogen/triglycerides/visceral fat and production of ketones. I don't know why increased liver function in itself would be bad, as the liver is involved in so many things from healthy metabolism to healing. But I'm not a doctor!

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        • Thanks for your thoughts. Would you like a beef care package? Will throw in some venison too Yes, the cows have it easy here by most modern standards and even organic beef and is affordable. I can hear them mooing and lowing from here, the fields and farms start just across the lane. Lots of lambs and sheep.

          The other thing about the liver is the test was taken two days after an epic Easter blow-out so that could have been relevant.

          I agree, it could be a matter of absorption and not solely intake. This is such a big piece of it. I have got to stay away from gluten. It's no longer a habitual food, but I do find myself having splurges at socials. Improving the gut is a mission, I feel a bit daunted. I'll look into your suggestions. I've recently started raw sauerkraut and have been using acv for years, but not as a separate tonic. And pro-biotics sporadically. I havent really gone at this though in a focussed or systematic way, have not made it as important as maybe it deserves to be.

          IMG_2741.JPG
          Meet the neighbours: cute, and delicious.
          Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
          Ralph Waldo Emerson

          Journal: Vibrant Life

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          • Cuties!!

            I've got digestive issues myself, so I'm kind of floundering around and trying to find out what works. I wish I knew more, but that's the basic starting point. Lots of things have helped, but nothing has "fixed" it yet. Hopefully that's all you need.

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            • It occurs to me that even reaching the point of recognising that it is a digestive/absorption issue; rather than solely focussing on nutrients in, is a significant shift in understanding. There is so much work being done in this field. Like you I wonder how many of our v*gan sisters and brothers are struggling and supplementing whilst all the time their guts are taking a bashing from those pesky grains.
              Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
              Ralph Waldo Emerson

              Journal: Vibrant Life

              Comment


              • Originally posted by Neeleh View Post
                I'm wondering if it's OK to eat red meat, say 4 -6 oz; 5/6 times per week??

                I asked the doctor about this and she really didnt know and said she thought red meat thrice per week, but I think she was just saying a number, if you know what I mean.
                I see this as definitely ok, probably desirable. Enjoy
                Annie Ups the Ante
                http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread117711.html

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Neeleh View Post
                  It occurs to me that even reaching the point of recognising that it is a digestive/absorption issue; rather than solely focussing on nutrients in, is a significant shift in understanding. There is so much work being done in this field. Like you I wonder how many of our v*gan sisters and brothers are struggling and supplementing whilst all the time their guts are taking a bashing from those pesky grains.
                  Yeah covering problems up with supplements will only work for so long. Now that I've been looking into it from that angle I can see how far reaching the damage went (from before I was veg*n) and how important is I learn how to support and correct it. Now if only it would hurry up! I guess it took me 20+ years to do the damage, and small improvements over almost a year is still improvements. I'm just impatient!

                  Comment


                  • Thanks guys Annie, really getting stuck into red meat, and farm raised meat (even field raised, organic which is widely available, local, and affordable) is a bit of a mental obstacle for me. The flip is to find ways to enjoy it; and release guilt.

                    Rittenremedy small improvements over almost a year is still improvements
                    Holding onto hope!!
                    Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
                    Ralph Waldo Emerson

                    Journal: Vibrant Life

                    Comment


                    • Spent three days, hunkered down, a mini-menstrual retreat. Allowing myself to stop and withdraw from the world, simply 'cos that's what I feel to do; and while my mind is a little bothered by it, my body is clear on this point. No energy. The requirements are clear : food and rest in large amounts.

                      Had a tech-free Saturday; felt good to re-occupy myself; I tend to drift further and further from presence the more time I spend online.

                      The weather has been moody, changeable, and while I've prob missed a decent rainbow or two by staying at home, there is that special cosiness from watching angry skies whilst swaddled in blankets.

                      Food wise, I'm surprised by how much I have eaten, and it has been helpful to eat small regular meals. Works out as a feed every three hours with regular meals and snacks:a couple of ounces of protein and berries.

                      I just about have enough fresh produce to stretch another day, and hope that day 4 of rest won't lead to bed sores lol. It's OK, I'm bathing and wearing fresh clothes daily. But I honestly can't remember the last time I stayed at home 3-4 days consecutively, without being unwell.

                      Hoping that by honouring the body's seemingly sincere request for time out; I will prevent myself creating an illness or injury that will force me into rest.
                      Last edited by Neeleh; 05-10-2014, 11:18 PM.
                      Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
                      Ralph Waldo Emerson

                      Journal: Vibrant Life

                      Comment


                      • Finally ready to re-emerge from my womb-cave. That was quite a journey of ragged emotion, extreme fatigue. Four days of just being with that raging self. Phew. Still, didn't suppress it; stayed present and witnessed myself. Yesterday the tiredness was just too much; it felt like a mini paleo-flu episode. I could hardly move from the sofa. Hard!!

                        I absolutely feel 'better' or restored this morn. My physical energy is back - mercifully! So the routine is back on. When I've breakfasted (mixed fish and red pepper patties) will trot along to the spring and collect water. My bedroom doors are wide open, the incoming air is cool and fresh, the sky already blue with puffy clouds and I'm looking forward to reconnecting to the outside world.

                        There are a few short showers, but the rain feels playful and non-threatening, maybe even an part of the invitation to come out and join in with it all.

                        Later this afternoon will attempt an outdoor swim. Shop for groceries on the way home. Yesterday when things seemed especially dark and sticky, I was fearful that my energy would return at all! Fortunately life seems to be happening again, avanti!
                        Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
                        Ralph Waldo Emerson

                        Journal: Vibrant Life

                        Comment


                        • The day was mostly warm and sunny. Took the opportunity to expose bare legs to the sun, in the privacy of the garden. My legs are pale! Swimming outside mostly browns the face, shoulders and arms, but I'm not aiming for an even all over colour. That feels like too much work.

                          Didnt swim afterall. There was a fresh wind and I felt not to overextend myself. Had cravings for processed food and had to go to the supermarket and was worried about what might happen. Miracle alert! Walked through the entrance, there was an unstaffed table with exotic fruit cut into cubes in mini-bowls ie a tasting display. I got stuck in, it felt like a sign to stay on the path. I have never seen this place promote fruit before, usually it's bread and booze and cheese and bits.

                          I was rummaging through the fresh produce wondering if I might circle back round to that feast table. I decided to head back for a second pass, but the floor staff were starting to dismantle the display - so my timing had been perfect. Said prayers of thanks.

                          Have been really bothered about recent 'symptoms'. The difficult moods, the constipation, cravings etc. That last, lousy period, it was so intense and debilitating. Re-read my hand written food journals from the time I was slimmest and losing fastest, which was when I was eating starch-based v*gan 3x per day and beginning to introduce fish and more seeds, nuts and dense foods. But I was suffering there also, with immunity, fatigue and mood and believe it or not, constipation.

                          Overall, though I am heavier now and my mood has been filthy at times, I feel I have recovered my immunity and am less susceptible to fatigue.

                          Which made me feel 'better' about feeling 'worse'; occurs to me that there may be no easy answers. And that maybe I might ease my expectations around what diet can do for me, and the time-frame for healing. Accept where I am; retain high hopefulness as well as dropping fantasies of fast cure.
                          Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
                          Ralph Waldo Emerson

                          Journal: Vibrant Life

                          Comment


                          • Busy, over eventful day, I'm up late, let's squeeze in a quick one

                            Ate a new variety of sweet potato: Bushbok. Red skin, white flesh which turned yellow on cooking. Drier than regular orange flesh and possibly sweeter? Paired with a home made lamb bolognese. My first and feeling proud! Browned organic lamb mince in a dry pan then into slow cooker with a bottle of tomato passata, chopped carrot, onion, red pepper and spices. Added fresh peas from the pod and dried herbs towards the end of cooking. Ready in 3 hours or so.

                            Stodgy in a comforting way. I can't quite believe I'm skilling up in these traditional meals, they are somehow very evocative of childhood.

                            IMG_2872 (400x300).jpg
                            Messy and delicious!
                            Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
                            Ralph Waldo Emerson

                            Journal: Vibrant Life

                            Comment


                            • Oh wow, that looks and sounds so delicious! Comfort food is what it yells out to me.

                              How are you doing, Neeleh? In your previous journal entry you were expressing some of the darker moods and constipation still. I know i myself have been suffering from some "brain fog" lately. Has sleep been good to you? i'm finding that the magnesium citrate supplement has helped me on most nights. Not a perfect sleep but much better and deeper.

                              I hope your week is getting better and better!
                              “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”

                              ― Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own

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                              • Hi Bullymama Comfort food lol, you have no idea, straight back to nursery! This is the food my mother cooked from scratch. We never appreciated it. Brother, sis and me would squirrell it into napkins and throw it over the garden wall *deep shame*.

                                Still, it's come full circle now. Maybe I should let Mum know that I appreciate it, decades later. 'Do you remember that cottage pie you made in 1978? ' lol

                                Really glad to know your sleep is steadily and consistently improving, that must benefit you in so many ways. Well done on finding the key.

                                Did a double magnesium (=1000 mg) before bed a couple of nights ago. Man, the following morning, things really got moving, it was beautiful! But feels like an extreme/high dose and prob not great every day.

                                Added in a lot of extra starch yesterday; ate lunch out and took essentially a double meal of vegetarian sushi. Plus an extreme amount of milk chocolate (sugary). I definitely felt more mental clarity, improved mood and overall buoyancy. So much so that friends I met up with later told me this was the best they had seen me in ages. Could be the complex carbohydrates, could be the pure glucose, could be both?

                                Didnt find it easy to get to sleep, but that could be the insanely powerful full moon.

                                Just had a happy toilet trip and my mood is still 'up' so will make good use of that and hopefully not crash later.

                                So that is literally food for thought. Doesnt look that low carb is for me. So I have some recalibrating to do around the macros.
                                Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air
                                Ralph Waldo Emerson

                                Journal: Vibrant Life

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