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Spotlight Gesundheit

Picking Apart Addiction

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“It is impossible to understand addiction without asking what relief the addict finds, or hopes to find, in the drug or the addictive behaviour.”
Gabor Maté, In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction

For decades I have been looking at my eating problem the wrong way. I was looking to control the behavior. To curb the action. But, that has never worked. As the above quote from Dr. Mate explains, it is more than just action.

With that in mind, I have had to be really honest with myself about what food was soothing (and still is?) after all these decades. What did I need relief from? Fear, anxiety, pain, trauma? All of the above.

So, how do I move forward acknowledging that my problem with food is really a problem with misdirected soothing?

“The greatest damage done by neglect, trauma or emotional loss is not the immediate pain they inflict but the long-term distortions they induce in the way a developing child will continue to interpret the world and her situation in it. All too often these ill-conditioned implicit beliefs become self-fulfilling prophecies in our lives. We create meanings from our unconscious interpretation of early events, and then we forge our present experiences from the meaning we’ve created. Unwittingly, we write the story of our future from narratives based on the past…Mindful awareness can bring into consciousness those hidden, past-based perspectives so that they no longer frame our worldview.’Choice begins the moment you disidentify from the mind and its conditioned patterns, the moment you become present…Until you reach that point, you are unconscious.’ …In present awareness we are liberated from the past.”
Gabor Maté, In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction

Acknowledge the past. Live in the present. Believe in the future.

10 Month Plant Based Update

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Hi Everyone, it’s been a while. I thought I would do a short update on how my 100% plant based diet is going.

So first, my ability to whip something delicious and plant based out of thin air is a positive. Even the biggest meat eating family members comment on how good my cooking is and cannot believe it is plant based. It’s a skill that has to be practiced and honed with the help of cookbooks and the internet at first. But, much like anything else, practice gets you closer to perfect.

My body feels better than I did at 20. At 37, that is quite a feat. My complexion and skin in general is softer, more supple, radiant even, and almost everyone who guesses my age puts me in the 20’s range. What gal doesn’t like that!?

As far as my joints go, my previous injuries to my ankles no longer exist. The only injury I have any sign of is my knee which still crackles as bits of cartilage grind around my knee cap (lovely visual eh?) but it does not hurt even while running up stairs, which I find myself doing multiple times a day now. No aches, no pain, no problem.

I did an experiment and stopped weighing my food. I found that I naturally fluctuated 5lbs up or down on my plant based diet. Which, is a miracle considering how I was obese for decades of my life on a meat and dairy diet left unchecked. This diet doesn’t allow me to get out of control.

My energy level is amazing. I can stay up till 2am tinkering, go to bed, rise at 7am and run after my daughter all day without feeling worn out. I don’t have morning fog, post lunch sleepy head syndrome and the dreaded after dinner coma anymore. I can eat dinner and go straight out the door for a walk or run without feeling sluggish or sleepy.

All in all, going 100% plant based is the best move I have ever made for my body and mind. I feel on top of my game more now than ever. And, as evidence based nutrition shows, I will live longer and endure less disease than non plant based eaters, which means I’ve got more time to utilize this amazing feeling!

If you’re considering going plant based or even lacto ovo vegetarian and you’re wondering where to start your journey, leave a comment and I’ll guide you to the nutritional advice and resources for cooking that helped me the most.

I want you to feel as fantastic as I do!

 

Oestrogenic Injected Meat Linked to Breast Cancer – Really Important Video!

 

It is never too late to clean up your diet. This is the main reason I went 100% plant based and organic. Health has to be a personal priority for both ourselves and our children!

Down and Dirty Gardening

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I’ve been busy gardening. We moved in last October and a month ago all the critical upgrades were done so I’ve been having fun getting into some down and dirty gardening.

I’ve planted beans, radishes, 4 types of lettuce, kale, rosemary, thyme, tomatoes and some squash. Everything has been growing like crazy with the hot weather.

I want to share a photo of my Scarlet Runner beans. They are trellised to make a privacy surround. I love these beans! The red blooms are amazing, they yield like crazy and they are super easy to grow. And the size of the beans are humongous!

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Everyone Is A World From Which To Learn

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Today we have the capability of connection at our fingertips. Technology has made connecting with the world a fundamental part of our day. We busy ourselves with Gmail, Hulu, YouTube, WordPress, The New York Times etc. to gain knowledge and understanding of the world around us. But, I want to steer the focus of education inward for a moment.

I hold the ideal we are all worlds of knowledge. We all have the capability to teach and impact those we connect with through our choices, opinions and deeds. As humans, we build our world by emulating, discounting and defending against the opinions and actions we encounter. Our lives are defined by our choices, opinions, and deeds.

And, if we are honest, we must admit the world we build around us is displayed for all who are willing to observe. We all possess the capability to be a beacon of light and love just as easily as darkness and hate.

We, however, can choose to cultivate compassion when we learn of atrocity in someone else’s far away world, we can fight indifference by buying a poor man a meal in exchange for his wisdom, instead of ignoring him while rushing to our morning latte, we can also defend ourselves against the elitist mentality which refuses to accept atrocity and living in destitution as a possibility in our own worlds.

Every thought we think, every word we speak, and every gesture we make, be it of love, indifference or hate is impacting someone’s world and has the potential to spread.

I beg you today, choose light, love, and compassion to build a world worth emulating.

Lead Contamination in Foods (even Organic).

Really important! Video is under 5 minutes. Please watch. Additional lead related links in description section under video. Watch to learn the effects of lead exposure and bio-accumulation stats.

Think Twice about Advice

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Last year I was urged to follow a high protein diet while weight training. I was told it was essential to hit my protein target to build muscle and maintain strength.

I ate copious amounts of eggs, dairy and meat trying to meet my protein goal. And over time, I became sluggish, tired and developed an aversion to meat, then eggs and finally dairy. And decided to cut them out all at once. Essentially, my high protein diet steered me into a 100% plant based diet.

I started looking into plant based nutrition and ran across Ray Cronise. He insisted protein recommendations were elevated due to an outdated model and a high protein diet could cause illnesses such as cancer (look up IGF1).

This was my sign to stop obsessing over grams of protein. But, I continued tracking my food intake.

After compiling long term data, I noticed my protein intake dove to around 35% of my previous high protein quota. All with no discernible difference in my strength or endurance.

I was thoroughly surprised. And I now have to admit, I fell headlong into the high protein promise of enhanced endurance and strength. But, there is nothing to support that assertion from my side of the fence.

I learned a huge lesson. I no longer follow advice without fact checking scientific and medical data. Misinformed advice can be turned into an informed decision with the right research. It just takes effort.

Who is wise? The one who learns from every person…   Ben Zoma (Talmud – Avot 4:1)

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When I was earning my B.A., I would make sandwiches in exchange for a homeless person’s life story. In my University days, I was fascinated with education level not equating to success in life.

I can tell you without a doubt, sitting down with what most people would consider losers in the game life, gave me more insight into succeeding in my own life than any course I paid for. All I had to do is be open to the value of their life lessons.

A lot of these people got hit by crippling circumstances at the job level, home life and health. But one characteristic was apparent in all homeless I was honored to share a meal with: They were immensely grateful for the small things: a bike, a blanket, an extra sandwich, words of encouragement, and acknowledgement of their worth as a human.

In exchange for opening my mind, pantry and schedule, I received huge tools to succeed in my own life in regards to personal finance, politics, survival strategies and how to stay positive in the face of adversity.

I beg you to eagerly learn from everyone. Everyone has a story and lessons to be learned. Open your mind, heart and schedule to learn from everyone.

Who is wise? The one who learns from every person…   Ben Zoma (Talmud – Avot 4:1

Vegan Diet Evaluation

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When I decided to go 100% plant based, I cut out dairy, meat and eggs all at once. I used an app called Yummly to find vegan recipes in the first weeks, but now I’m in a groove.

I like super easy meals so a lot of my food is precooked or raw. One of my favorite dishes is hot black beans topped with cold, diced avocado and a little salt. For breakfast oatmeal is my go to. And for dinner lots of veggies with rice, bread, whole wheat past or another grain. I eat fruit and veggies throughout the day. My go to snack is pot popped popcorn in coconut oil and topped with salt.

What nutrition changes have you gone through or been interested in lately?

If you have any quick, wholesome plant based recipes or ideas, feel free to comment below!

Thanks for reading!

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