Questions of a Modern Mommy

I diverge from my normal nutrition/cooking posts to post a paper that I wrote for my Women’s studies class this week.  As my readers are women and mostly moms, I want to offer a platform for feelings, frustrations and thoughts on the many roles that women play and the balancing act we employ to meet our goals.  Sending love out to the ladies today!

 

Image
“When I grow up, I want to be a lawyer so I can make a lot of money.” I can still remember that sentence, the headline I wrote in first grade under a picture I had drawn in crayon of a woman wearing a black dress standing on a hill. I’m not sure how I made the association between law and money at 6 years old, but that dream held tight until high school when my life got a little bit more complicated. I didn’t become a lawyer; in fact I didn’t even go to college. The typical teenage rebellion lasted about eight years for me and by the time I pulled out of it, I had an established career. By 26, I owned a construction company, was married and had my first child. By 28, I had my second child. I embraced the notion that I could do it all. Not only could I do it all, I could do a “man’s job”. I was the boss and had many men working under me.

The anxiety ran deep with two young kids, a husband, a home and a business to take care of. The balls were juggling but I was dropping them left and right just waiting for someone to notice. Company bills were going unpaid as I struggled to find time to sit down at my desk. Patience with my kids was waning. The real estate market was floundering but I didn’t have time to notice or to plan. The slow embers of failure were glowing day by day until finally, the fire began to burn my house of cards down. That was not the end, that was the beginning of my questioning.

As my ball of yarn unraveled, I maintained the momentum of moving forward and never looking back. My goals, plans, and ego could not embrace the idea of being a stay at home mom. What would people think? How could I show my face if I was only (which as Oprah says, is seriously the hardest job on the planet) a stay-at-home mom. My mother and grandmother were successful career women. I had so much to prove for my own failures not to mention the legacy that women had been fighting for almost 200 years. With two young children and a closed sign on the business, I went back to school.

The stress had caused my immune system and adrenals to fail and I became sick more than not. But, I was not listening, I was forging ahead. I eased into school not knowing what direction I would take but at least knowing I could check off the college box when I was finished. My passion for cooking and nutrition grew as the terms went by with meals to cook for my family each day. I settled on a Bachelor’s degree in Dietetics and have since been pursuing that goal.

My children are now 5 and 7. I have one year left of school. My immune system has recovered as has my self-esteem. However, most days I wake up wondering if this is the right idea. Many of my nights and weekends are lost to studying for exams instead of playing with my kids. I forego the glass of wine with my husband to write papers. I maintain three home-cooked meals per day for my kids and husband often spending 2-4 hours a day in the kitchen to insure they are eating whole organic foods made from scratch. Each week hours are dedicated to laundry, cleaning, volunteering at the kid’s school, running errands and grocery shopping.

The balls are up in the air again and at the end of each day I wonder, am I making the right choice? Are my kids suffering for my goals? Are my intentions selfish? Just because women have fought for equality, for rights, for a voice, does that mean I have to forge my way into the workplace to maintain these strides? Are my skills as a mother less valuable than my skills as a dietitian? Am I less than my CEO best friend if I pack lunches and fold laundry?

Does my husband have these thoughts when he is resting his head in a hotel for 5-10 days out of each month on work trips? I doubt it. Does he wonder if having a career is the right choice for him? No. He knows it supports our family. Does he wonder if he is doing enough? No. He believes firmly that he is. These are not the questions of men. By in large, these are the questions of mothers. These are the questions of liberated, strong women. These are the questions of ladies that have been told that they must be everything to everyone to the detriment of themselves. These are my questions. We as women have fought for these rights with commitment and perseverance. In all honestly, what choice to we have? With the divorce rate at 50%, what insurance do we have for our own well-being if we are dependent on our husbands? None of us plan on our marriages ending, but I will be damned if I am going to be on the losing side if it does.

We are not yet equals to men in the workplace or society but we are closer than we have ever been. We have proven that we CAN juggle and balance and wear heels while changing dirty diapers and running companies. That doesn’t mean that we are not suffering for those choices. It doesn’t mean that our children, our marriages, our immune systems, our well being and our quality of life are not paying the price for being the amazing, multi-tasking women that we are. So, the question I ask myself is just because I can do it, does that mean I should do it? I honestly don’t know, but I’ve accepted that I will spend my life listening for the answer that feels right.

Advertisements

Easter eggs – au naturale

Image

 

In the minds and hearts of children, the real egg cannot compete with the thrill of finding and opening its synthetic plastic impersonator only to reveal a sugary treat. However, I refuse to let another year go by without giving the Egg its rightful purpose in life.  This year I want to make deviled eggs or egg salad or something delicious from the beautifully dyed Easter eggs that are left to rot after the hunt is finished.    However, I am not going to eat eggs dyed in toxic waste or whatever is in the junk from the store.  So, I just found this lovely egg article with directions for dying eggs with foods like beets, coffee, spinach, etc.  I had to pass this along before the weekend when we, parents, role up our sleeves and dye dozens of eggs. My kids typically lose interest after a couple of eggs so this is our chance to play and get creative! 

 

Happy egg hunting!

 

Beans for 30…

In my typical overly enthusiastic and underestimating fashion, I volunteered to make lunch with thirty 2nd graders to help out with my son’s nutrition unit at school. In addition, they get to do a Q and A with me about nutrition while they eat.  I tossed and turned about this commitment for a month before I figured out what we would make and how I was going to do it in an organized way that would keep the kids involved and excited without being overrun by 7 and 8 year olds, (honestly, they are scary when they get bored).

One of the challenges was that I needed to make a meal from whole foods without a stove, sharp tools or processed food items and it needed to be cost effective…oh wait, and the kids had to like it.

This was the meal that made it through the final cut:

Black Beans and rice (Made in crock pots and transported to the school)

Salsa, guacamole, fruit salsa, shredded veggies and a vegetable platter. (Recipes below)

The kids break into groups of 4-5 and each group is given a recipe to work from, along with all of the necessary food items and kitchen tools. (Thanks to many of the parents loaning out cutting boards, measuring cups, etc. and donating food).  Parents and teachers will supervise and help out with the few dangerous tasks, such as cutting open the avocados for the guacamole.

The kids get to practice skills such as reading the fractions of measurements, following a recipe, working together and sharing food.  It is a satisfying objective that always makes eating more fun.  The meal breaks down to less than $2 a child and is organic and whole food based.

If you are looking for a way to get your kids involved with you in the kitchen, this is a great meal to try.  As for me, I am out the door in two hours with 8 bags of food, 2 crock pots,  3 boxes of kitchen tools and small appliances.  Send me your happy thoughts and well wishes that everyone has fun and goes to recess with a full belly.

Click  Recipes for Spanish 2nd

 

14-day Mexican challenge

ImageI have taken on a fun challenge that is expanding my comfort zone in the kitchen.  I began volunteering with The FIT Project, a local non-profit focusing on improving the wellness of low-income, high-risk families in the Portland area. The organization is so inspirational and I am extremely excited to be working with them.  My first project is creating weekly dinner menus for a family of four for $100.  Currently, the project is serving mainly Hispanic families so I am focusing on traditional Mexican meals.  The goal is to create meals that are budget-friendly, very healthy, low-fat, low sugar, low sodium…phew!  So far, I have struck out once, but also made a couple of really good recipes that the kids have loved and I have really enjoyed.  I have no real experience cooking Mexican food with the exception of fish tacos so I was nervous when I started making some of the recipes.  However, tonight’s meal was the most concerning.  In the end, it was pretty easy, delicious and healthy.  I made a healthy version of pork tamales that had no lard and lots of flavor.  We enjoyed them with chipotle chard (minus the cheese) and home-made pinto beans (see recipe below).

silver creek falls and tamales 011

This week I also attended an Ethiopian cooking class at Whole foods and learned how to make an amazing lentil dish and Injera, the traditional Ethiopian bread.  I love learning about different traditional foods.  They are often very healthy, inexpensive and easy to make.  Sundays are a good time to take on the challenge of a new meal as I normally have a little more time on my hands to prepare a sit down family dinner.  After I try a recipe, if it is a winner, I usually make a double or triple batch the next time and throw it in the freezer.

If you are feeling motivated and adventurous, chose an ethnic food to focus on for a while.  Look up recipes and try them out.  If you can “healthify” them by including more veggies and removing or replacing unhealthy fats and sugars, you may end up with a recipe that becomes part of your normal routine.  Ethnic foods are often really healthy can introduce interesting spice combinations can add a lot of exotic flavors. Try out these easy beans.  Make a big batch and use throughout the week over quinoa, salads, tacos or freeze for later!

Enjoy!

Pinto or Back beans

1 lb. pinto or back beans

16 c water

1 tsp salt

4 garlic cloves

1 white onion

 

Soak beans in 8 c water overnight to remove phytic acid

The next day, dice onions and garlic.  Put drained beans into 8c water in stock pot or crock pot.  Add onions, garlic and salt.  If using stock pot, bring to a boil and reduce heat to low to simmer for 3-4 hours.

If using crockpot, turn on low and cook all day (6-8 hours).

I store my excess in wide mouthed mason jars in the freezer.  Retain much of the juices for storing so the beans do not dry out.

Voila!

 

 

 

Are you getting enough Vitamin D?

 

Twice a year I have my Vitamin D levels checked.  After 4 years of working on my levels by taking Vitamin D supplements I am finally within normal levels but still on the low end. Normal levels of Vitamin D in blood serum are between is 30.0 to 74.0 nanograms per milliliter, but 30.0 is still on the low end and most doctors want to see their patients closer to mid-upper range. I often run into people that say “My multivitamin has D, so I must be getting enough”.  Most multi’s have about 400-600IU. This may be adequate for some, but I have had to take 6,000-10,000/day to get into normal ranges, so there is definitely not a one size fits all dosage.  Why is this important and vital to your health? Vitamin D is involved in muscles movement, nerve messaging between the brain and  body, inflammation and the immune system’s ability to fight off  bacteria and viruses. Together calcium and vitamin D work together to maintain strong bones and teeth. Current studies are implicating Vitamin D in cancer prevention and treatment.

If you are low on Vitamin D you may experience lethargy, low immune system, muscle pain and weakness and other less direct symptoms. Your body uses sunlight to make Vitamin D in the skin however, there are only certain times of the year and times throughout the day when vitamin D can be synthesized from the sun.  Click here for a map indicating areas that have appropriate sun exposure. In addition, if you wear sunscreen or clothing when you are in the sun, you are blocked from vitamin D synthesis.  You can also get vitamin D from food sources including:

  • Fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, and mackerel.
  • Beef liver, cheese, and egg yolks provide small amounts.
  • Mushrooms provide some vitamin D. In some mushrooms,  D content is being boosted by  ultraviolet light exposure.
  • Almost all of the U.S. milk supply is fortified with 400 IU of vitamin D per quart. However, other dairy products such as cheese and ice cream are usually not fortified.
  • Some foods such as breakfast cereals, orange juice, yogurt, margarine, and soy beverages are now fortified with vitamin D.

Vitamin D can be a big issue if you are in the habit of wearing sunscreen, if you live in a rainy cold, climate, if you are a vegan/vegetarian. Most people are low on vitamin D now, possibly due to the fact that stress depletes vitamin D stores.  The best way to deal with vitamin D is to have your blood taken.  If you are below normal levels take a supplement and get re-tested within 3-6 months. My need for vitamin D might be 10, 000 IU/day but yours might be less and there are toxic effects of too much vitamin D intake so it is not wise to self-dose.

On a personal and anecdotal note;  Once I finally reached normal levels, my immune system kicked in full gear, I had energy and endurance.  Vitamin D is still being researched, but to date is seems like a key player and vital part of maintaining a healthy and disease-resistant body.

Want to get a little more Vitamin D in your diet (not to mention essential fatty acids)? Try this grilled salmon recipe by Bobby Flay.  Note that most of the butter and oil grills off so don’t panic.

Salmon with Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze

Resources

http://www.naturalnews.com/037049_chronic_stress_cortisol_vitamin_d.html

http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-QuickFacts/

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003569.htm

The Art of Making a Menu

v

Image

I have not gotten around to making the menu above (but it is on my to-do list) however, one of the habits I have finally committed to is making a weekly menu. Getting into the habit is not easy.  It takes time out of your weekend and at times it feels completely tedious.  However, there are some major benefits to carving out 20 minutes to do this each.

1. You don’t have to think about what to make for dinner on busy weekdays.

2. You can plan and prep things like baked goods, snacks etc. before the week starts

3. You can create a specific grocery list so less food is wasted throughout the week.

4. Your kids can help so they will be happy with what they find on their plate and in their lunch box.

5. Do this every week for a month and then just REPEAT!!!

On Saturdays or Sundays I sit down and figure out what we are going to do for dinners throughout the week taking into account any social events and dinners out. I ask each child to pick a dinner and to tell me what they want for lunches. I then plan some easy grab and go breakfasts.  My kids like sweet breakfasts and I hate sugar so I decide on a few “paleo” baked goods from Against All Grain then I cook them and store them on Sundays. Coffee cake and muffins made with eggs and almond flour are winners that I don’t feel guilty about. Lots of protein, very little sugar makes their teachers and me happy.

I always make a different menu for myself to accommodate my breakfast and lunch preferences and I don’t normally require an AM and PM snack. My poor husband just gets whatever I plan for the kids or he is the recipient of all of the dinner leftovers packed up for his lunches and snacks.

After I create the menu I print it and put it on the fridge.  That gives me an easy reference for the week.  I compile any recipes that I need and then take a quick inventory of what I have already and what I need to get at the store. I find most of my recipes online so as I scan through recipes to see what I have on hand, I normally put my laptop on the counter and stare into my fridge and pantry while adding items that I need onto my phone shopping app. If this is starting to sound like way too much work, trust me it gets easy and efficient after a couple of weeks. Have a look at my Menu  this week. It might help you get started!

This week at my house, seaweed snacks are all the rage.  However, I cannot seem to buy the packaged seaweed snacks at the store.  They are really expensive and they have loads of packaging.  So, I Google searched the recipe to make my own and it is so easy and fast, that I made about ten batches today.  Seaweed is so good for you but if you are like me, you eat it around your sushi roll and that is about it.  Well, not anymore. If seaweed snacks have not hit the top ten trends in your neighborhood, they probably will.  So save yourself some money and make your own.

 Image

Ingredients:

Seaweed nori wraps

Sesame or olive oil

Salt and any other seasoning you desire

Directions:

Buy a package of toasted seaweed nori wraps around the Asian food section of your store, I use Stash brand. Place large seaweed square on a dry cookie sheet with or without parchment paper. Brush sesame or olive oil lightly on one side of the seaweed.  Sprinkle with salt. Bake on 300 degrees for 5-7 minutes. Remove; cool for a few minutes, cut into small squares or any other fun shape.  I took the dehydrating pouch out of the original package of seaweed, put it in a large zip lock bag and stored my seaweed snacks that way.  You could also store them in mason jars or anything else that will keep moisture out. Honestly, these only last a few hours at my house so storage is not an issue.

Enjoy!!!

Want to drop some weight…forever?

Whether your weight is like a yoyo or can never lose the last five pounds, what is the best way to meet your goal?  Weight loss can be so confusing these days, paleo, low-fat, diet supplements, juicing…the options are endless.  The question to ask is how long do I want to lose the weight for?  If your answer is forever, this is my recommendation. Approach weight loss in order to lose weight in a way that will healthily reduce overall body fat (not muscle) and maintain the weight-loss, with these three rules.

 

1. A reduction in daily calories

2. An increase in whole and unprocessed foods.

3. MOVE

From there, you can design many plans based on what works for your life. Some important factors that will help you succeed are:

1. Keep your sugar intake low and avoid wheat based products which can help to reduce visceral fat around the belly, reduce overall inflammation as well as curb hunger because blood sugar will not be jumping all over the board confusing your brain. 

2. Increase  vegetables and other plant-based whole foods which offer vital minerals and vitamins as well as provide filling meal options with lower calorie content than processed and animal based products.

3. If you eat meat and eggs, buy organic.  Why?  This is a BIG one.  Non-organic meat comes from animals raised on hormones, antibiotics and other toxins.  When you ingest the hormones in the meat, those hormones interrupt your metabolic processes.  The technical name is endocrine disruptor.  The antibiotics that you ingest kill your natural gut flora (the good bacteria) which allows your food to digest as well as sets the foundation for the majority of the neurons in your body which reside in your gut. 

4. Buy organic produce whenever possible.  While you can wash your produce, many fruits and veggies are now grown with the pesticides in the seed versus sprayed onto the plant.  If you cannot buy 100% organic, try to follow the dirty dozen list whenever possible.

Get started!

1. Visit www.myplate.gov.  Go to the super tracker tab.  This will allow you to create a profile and input your daily food intake. It is an easy way to see how many calories you should be taking in for your age, height and weight.  Reduce the amount by 300 calories per day and you should lose about 1 lb/week.  If you try to lose more than that, it will likely come right back.  The tortoise wins the race in weight loss, so go slowly.

2. Make chicken soup each week from a 2-3lb. organic chicken (about $12-$14 dollars). Have the butcher chop it up well so the bones are broken and the marrow can seep out into the broth.  Fill the bottom of a stock pot with chopped onion, chopped celery and chipped carrots, 3 bay leaves, salt and a bunch of herbs (I like thyme, marjoram, sage and oregano). Put the whole chicken in metal straining pot within a stock pot Fill the pot with water until the chicken is covered by about 1-2 inches.  Slow simmer it for 3- 5 hours. Put the straining pot out with the chicken in it, strip all of the meat off of it, throw the meat back into the soup and VOILA, lunch and dinner for the week.  Store your soup in wide mouthed mason jars in the freezer (leave 1.5 inches of space at the top so the jar does not crack). The soup is filled with fat and protein.  Bone broth based soups help repair intestinal damage and provides a filling and nourishing meal.  Don’t be afraid of the fat, fat is good for you if it comes from a healthful source. It also does not raise your blood sugar so it is superior to carbohydrates as long as you don’t go overboard.  Fat provides more energy than carbs and protein, 9 calories per gram versus 4 calories per gram so you just need to eat less quantity than you would if you were eating carbs.  However, fat satiates the body faster than carbs so you should be fuller faster.

3. Eat salads with a little protein on top (meat, nuts, seeds, beans) and a homemade dressing. Oil and Vinegar are easy but there are many options out there for variety.

4. EAT WHOLE FOOD!  I know that is daunting when you don’t have a lot of time.  On the weekends, make a batch of soup, wash and chop up your veggies, make a batch of quinoa and boil some eggs.  Throughout the week, you can grab and go if you do a little prep on the weekend!

5.  GET UP AND DO SOMETHING!  The fastest way to increase your health and lose weight is to move your body.  It not only burns energy (calories) but it will increase your metabolism which means you burn more even when you rest. Long term studies show people that just walk enjoy better health and mental capacity well into their late life.  So, commit to walking 30 minutes three times a week to start.  If you can become comfortable with that (do it on your lunch break if you can) then you might add in some weight/resistance training because adding muscle mass is the best way to up your metabolism.

Chop up those veggies and check out my favorite salad dressing recipe below!

 

Mustard Vinaigrette

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 tbsp red wine vinegar

2 tbsp dry white wine

1 tbsp whole grain mustard

1 tsp Dijon mustard

Salt and pepper to taste

 

(Try this over roast chicken and fresh greens)

 

 

FAT!!!!! Eat some, it’s good!

Last time you heard from me I was embarking on a pseudo cleanse to support my friend with breast cancer.  In addition, my term was ending, finals hit, and I fell off of the cliff of sanity into the open waters of insanity.  In the meantime, I had an exciting and rocky ride with my health and nutrition.  I saw my naturopath in December and found out that I had a parasite.  In addition, I was training for a 1/2 marathon and my doc put the kibosh on my cleanse.  Due to the parasite, I had to remove most sugars and carbs from my diet to try to starve the little suckers out and repair my gut.  Long story a little less long, I had to increase my fats and proteins and drop the carbs (including fruit).  So, paleo cooking took over my kitchen.  Now after two months of cooking paleo and reading a few anti-carb books (Brain Grain and Wheat Belly) I feel inclined to share some interesting findings with you.

Image

FAT! For those of us that grew up in the 80’s, we shudder at the word fat.  The subconscious dialogue that we have been repeating for 30 years is that fat is bad.  Whole grains, low-fat foods are the way to go.  Well, the times and science are shifting and Paleo is taking the place of the low-fat revolution.  Why?  Why does fat not make you fat?  Well, first let me tell you that fat does make you fat.  Anytime you consume more calories than you burn, you will gain weight.  However, eating fat, does not normally translate to bigger thighs.  Here is how it works. When you eat, your body receives energy.  However, when you eat carbs, especially carbs that rank high on the glycemic index (carbs that digest faster), they break down to glucose (sugar) and your blood sugar rises causing insulin to release from the pancreas.  Insulin’s job is to attach to insulin receptors on your cells so that the sugar (glucose) in your blood can be taken up into cells to metabolize as energy (so you can run and play) or to store as fat (In case you are forced into starvation or hibernation) .  So, as the sugar is taken up into muscle and fat cells, blood sugar drops, sometimes even dipping below normal blood sugar levels causing hypoglycemia (not enough sugar in the blood). Either way, causing the body to be hungry again. In addition, a hormone released in the gut that signals fullness or satiety is released in lower levels when we eat carbs and higher amounts when we eat protein and fat causing the brain to signal fullness faster (click here for study).

When you eat one gram of fat, you receive 9 calories.  When you eat one gram of protein or carbohydrate, you receive 4 calories.  So, on a weight basis, it makes sense that you would want to eat protein and carbs, because you get more food with less calories.  However, eating a meal of fat and protein signals your body to be full faster so you will eat less food and stay full longer.  You may ask why we don’t just eat protein then.  Well, the body prefers to use protein as building blocks for new cells, enzymes, etc. This is why we normally use fat storage before we begin to break our muscle mass down when we are in starvation mode .  Fats and carbs are the best and easiest source of energy.

The green light to eat fats does not mean that one should sit down with a tub of butter (even grass-fed)  and a spoon.  Fat still offers calories as I mentioned earlier, anything can cause you to gain weight, even carrots if you eat too much (this would prove to be very challenging so I would not recommend it).  However, when eating fats, or anything else for that matter, look at the quality of what you are eating.  With calories, also comes other vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals, etc.  Find ways to maximize the benefits of your foods by making sure your foods are nutrient dense.  Some foods have long-chain fatty acids while others have short and medium. Trans-fats from processed foods are horrible for you and are linked to obesity and heart disease.  While omega-3 decrease inflammation and are linked to a decrease in cancer. Saturated fats are not the demon that they were once made out to me. In fact, current science cannot link saturated fat intake to cardiovascular disease at all. In the end, my rule of thumb is to eat unprocessed foods, mainly organic.  By doing this, I can insure that my food does not have added chemicals that are inflammatory to my body.  Don’t feel like you have to become a predator, you can eat paleo without eating tons of meat, think nuts, seeds, veggies, coconut. When I eat meat, I prefer pasture raised meats and dairy products because the animal was eating their natural diet and not a bunch of fattening and inflammatory carbohydrates. This goes back to the old adage, you are what you eat.  It is true.

Here are some great recipe sites if you want to try a grain-free, paleo diet.  On a separate and personal note, I have found that removing caffeine from my diet has really enhanced the energy stabilizing effects of eating a low-carb diet and has completely curbed sugar cravings.

Check these out!

http://www.againstallgrain.com

http://www.thepaleomom.com

http://www.nomnompaleo.com

http://www.thespunkycoconut.com

Goodbye cravings…

Image

I always forget how good it feels to not be tempted by food cravings.  Normally on day four of a cleanse I hit my happy place, but it is day three and I am feeling pretty stupendous.  Yesterday afternoon I had a few muscle aches but no headaches like I had on day one.  Here is my testament to how awesome detox is…

Last night Finn woke me up at 2:45 wanting to climb into bed.  Then Parker woke up, then Finn woke up, then Parker woke up.  So I ended up coming downstairs at 3:15 to make them banana bread for breakfast and do some homework.  I had a fasting blood test at 9 today so I could not have any juice but I felt fine.  I finally tried to fall back asleep on the couch at 5:30 and Parker came down at 6am ready to find the darn Elf on the Shelf, Tommy Tinkerson. In a raspy and slightly scary voice I told him to get his bottom back upstairs until 7 and let me sleep. 

Eventually we made it to school and I made it to my blood draw which was the most horrible draw I have ever had.  Let me just say that by now I had fasted for 14 hours and she took me back for my draw an hour after my appointment time of 9am.  Since I have put this blood test off for 5 months due to my complete and total fear of needles, I stuck it out.  However, she was so frazzled by the time she took me back that I knew it was going to be a disaster.  She tried both arms and said she could not get enough blood (PS I am very well hydrated, in case you wanted to assign any blame to me).  She also left the tourniquet on my arm the whole time which I have never experienced.  I was a hyperventilating mess by the time she finished at which time she told me I would have to come back for more blood at another time…yeah, right.

OK, what is my point?  Through all of this, I still feel pretty darn good.  Normally when I get no sleep my immune system almost immediately suffers and I get a sore throat.  After a stressful event like a blood draw, I normally crash. Today, I am merely sleepy.  I will take it.  So, here is the Gerson soup that I am making today.  I am not going to use the soup mill but I am going to make soup with no salt which will be VERY interesting.

Happy Wednesday!

My gift for you on day 2 – Gerson Green Juice

Yesterday was awful, I mean painful, disastrous, and all around crappy. I was in full detox mode.  I had a migraine, muscle and joint pain and some nasty head fog.  I will say that I was not hungry, though.  Yesterday, I ate two salads with tangy apple cider vinegar dressing, three juices and a big bowl of steamed broccoli with garlic. I was full, as hard as that is to imagine.  But today is another story.  I FEEL AMAZING!!!!!!  I have energy, I have clarity, I have poop. Yep, it  had to be said. 

I have already dropped the kids off, gone on a run, had a food allergy test and done some homework.  I have not had a food allergy test for about 4 years so I thought I should update and surprise, surprise, dairy, wheat, sugar and coffee.  My strange allergy is bell peppers.  Who knew?  I’m not going to miss them a bit.  Tomorrow I blood test to see what is going on there and then I will test again in 6 weeks when my cleanse is done and see what has improved.  I am super excited to see the evidence that supports how awesome I feel.  I am trying to run a half marathon in Feb and not sure how this is going to work with long distance running but I am going to give it a shot anyway. 

I am sharing the Gerson Green Juice recipes for you juicers out there because it rocks my world.  Hope you enjoy!!!