Thursday, November 27, 2014

Fourth food sober Thanksgiving 2014, yeah! I'm thankful for that

This will be my 4th food sober Thanksgiving. My first was in 2011 and keeping on track with my weight loss plan (It was Medifast, I got over it, and lost the weight. It helped me out of morbid obesity- don't judge!).

I was reading Robb Wolf's book: The Paleo Solution and planning my transition from weight loss to weight maintenance. (Paleo-ish food templates, think being off sugar and grains doesn't matter? I got over that, it sure does to me, so don't judge- life after auto-immune disease is important).

In 2012, 2013, and 2014, I stay on my food plan. I'm now known for my awesome photos, my famous "let's" go for a walk, and for staying gluten free and eating meat and vege.

I'm no longer known for binge eating all the stuffing and having new clothes because the old ones didn't fit. My family is no longer worried about my health and being a parent with failing health and a very young daughter.

I didn't choose all the genetic markers, the food addiction, but I can choose to make food choices that keep me well, meal to meal. Thankful for the clarity to live another food sober day.

I choose this. Each food that I choose will either make me sick or keep me well. Thankful for the strength, the courage and the wisdom to make choices that keep me well.  Thanksgiving is a meat and veg holiday if you choose it to be.  I always have that choice.

Safe travels. If you are staying on a food plan today, you are not alone.

What's working today

1. Staying on a gluten free, mostly processed sugar free food template 24/7
2. Admitting it was not my fault that I was swimming in the shallow end of the obesity gene pool and food addiction.
3. Knowing that my genetics are there and I can choose foods that make me well or make me sick.
4. Being thankful to know, to let others know not to gluten down the turkey. (ask if there's flour in the baking bag...)
5. Taking a walk, having fun, taking time for myself, taking my camera.

What didn't work in the past

1. Offering to bring or make dessert, buy all the things from Costco just so I could binge eat.
2. Not really listening to those, like my counselor that said "I think sugar and grains are like allergies for you"
3. Not fully understanding that the foods I eat could effect me so much.
4. Not speaking up about needing to be gluten free.... hey, what are the ingredients in the garlic salt?
5. Offering to clean up, so I could eat up, keep eating (there was always stuffing left over!), then fall asleep.

Whatever you choose today, stop and say "I choose this". It takes a lot of clarity, strength, and courage not to go down the rabbit hole of sugar, grains, and other moderate eating strategies. At least I have some clarity.

 Here's to staying on plan. Life is short. So am I. Do what makes you well. Abstaining = elimination= freedom to stay in what works.    Freedom, light heart, light mind.  My binge brain would love it if I told myself to moderate eat and that I'm "depriving myself". I'm smart enough to stay one step ahead of that slippery slope thinking.

Take "Keep it Up David's Thanksgiving 2014 Pledge" if you like those sorts of things.
Gwen will be hosting her Scale accountability club (if you weigh) every Friday over at The Sunny Coconut
Vinnie and Anna had a great Thanksgiving Podcast and will be putting some life into living
Alen Standish is focusing on ONE thing. Great podcast. My one thing is my food template.

Today will come and go. Here's to choosing foods that make us well. Onward.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Paleo Buck Book sale- kindle books on 11/25/2014 only

Okay, some of my favorite books are on sale over at Amazon Kindle for very inexpensive prices.

Most are $0.99. A few (the larger size books) are more.

It's worth it to get them on my iPad for EZ cooking in the kitchen.

And other books for reading when I'm at jury duty. Sigh!!!

Anyhoo, check out the various links. I'm sharing Alison Golden's(Paleo Non Paleo) affiliate link here.

I make no money from this book sale, but I did get some of my very Favorites: Everyday Paleo, The Primal Blueprint, Modern No Nonsense guide to Paleo, the Paleo Solution, Paleo Girl (for my daughter).

I got some new ones, too! Paleo Manifesto, the Ancestral Table, the Paleo Kitchen

Just happy the Jury Duty Lounge has WiFi. Sale ends at midnight at the end of 11/25/2014 EST, USA.  Holy Smokes I hope jury duty will end before that. ;)

My 2 cents: I think Paleo & Primal templates are underused in long term weight maintenance. So if you were ever curious, the content is pretty awesome, in my opinion.

Onward.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Falling Forward 2014, #4 Sick already this winter season, what's working

Surf those winter waves- San Diego County Nov 2014
I had to "surf those waves" of sickness the last 3 days.

Wow! Probably the sickest I've been since I've lost the weight in 2011. Nausea for 2 straight days and I couldn't keep a thing down.

I desperately wanted to avoid urgent care and IV's so I got an anti-nausea drug from my Physician's Assistant (PA) and I'm at least back to drinking coconut water, chicken broth, and some sparkling water.

Hoping to keep some eggs and avocado down next.

 I had to fight binge urges at the pharmacy. Strong binge urges that called me to get hard candy, juice, and every last thing I could think of that I used to sooth myself with when I was a kid and adult binge eating and sick.

I would think the thought and say, nope, no way. This too will pass. I have to take care of myself with out my trigger foods. No. Matter. What. I even gave heads up to my PA that I would prefer not to rehydrate with glucose and I would like to stick to coconut water and chicken broth due to sugar cravings. She was very smart and caught on right away.

PA told me that as long as I could keep liquid down that had electrolytes with sodium and potassium, then I was good to go. Processed sugar was not a requirement. Yesssss! Glad to speak up and not get ridiculous Gatorade, jello, and Popsicle recommendations. No need  to go down the high fructose rabbit hole.

I do not recommend losing 4 pounds in 2 days the way I did. The good news is I'm re-hydrating, staying abstinent from my binge foods and feeling much better. I was also not hungry at all ( WIN for fat adaption and not being a slave to high sugar/carbs). I was very thirsty. I suspect I'll be back at my 116-117 cruising weight range within a week or so.


 I may try going off coffee for a while and sticking to lower amounts of cups anyway. I've not had any coffee since Thursday morning and I've only had one headache. Opportunity is knocking! I can't believe I'm saying that...  Onward.

What is working now
1. Getting medical help and drugs to avoid Urgent Care or hospitalization when very sick.
2. Dealing with binge urges when they arise and not giving into grains or sugars.
3. Speaking up with my medical professionals about what I need and working with them to get well.
4. Paleo-ish, fat adapted food template so that my body can be a fat burner when needed.

What did not work in the past:
1. Waiting or ignoring symptoms until it was too late and I needed an IV.
2. Not recognizing I would need to deal with binge urges when well or when sick.
3. Taking all the advice to pack back Gatorade, Popsicle, and sugary junk food when sick. Not the fastest way for me to get well!
4. Eating high carbohydrate foods and being a sugar burner. All I wanted to to was binge eat and have more, more, more. Ugh!

Okay, well, just a reminder to stock up on your non-binge, health promoting recovery foods that work for you. Does anyone else fall into the commercial trap and standard advice of junk foods when you are sick?
Waves of nausea.. glad to be on solid ground

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Falling Forward 2014, #3 fasting blood draw and awaiting my VAP, small ion mobility lab results- Karen's Perfect World

Coffee post blood draw and cat watching
Falling Forward 2014, #3 

My best attempt at a post that does not take forever to write fast post about: fasting blood draw for cholesterol testing.

A. I had a fasting blood draw for a VAP test (small ion mobility panel). I'm not getting 100% of my annual health benefits due to my cholesterol level. To be fair, it's only a street value of $5, but I should not be under penalty for having super high HDL.  Really. I've busted my proverbial butt to get my health and wellness spot on for me. It's a matter of principal.

B. My thoughts on best cholesterol. In Karen's Perfect World (KPW) the algorithm for the wellness product that doles out my health insurance discounts would automatically reflex to an awesome cholesterol test called a VAP or Small Ion Mobility Panel.    Just look at what geeky graphs I can pour over next.

C. The real world deal 
 KPW reflex lab testing hasn't become a reality yet, but instead of brewing a big pot of Karen Stew, I can use the tools that I have:

C1. My vast cholesterol knowledge both in real life ( my day job = a Medical Technologist , MT (ASCP), CLS), and

C2. Learning via great Paleo/Primal Resources (think the science citations in the book Cholesterol Clarity for one example.) and

C3. Resolve to put myself as the key responsible person in charge of my health and well being, and

C4. I can meet up with my doctor and make the best choices or changes that I can possibly make. My molecular genetics, responses to food, weight maintenance tools will NOT be yours.

BONUS Round: Being fat adapted makes for EZ fasting blood draws. Being caffeine deprived is my only drawback to later morning blood draw appointments.

What's working now: KPW
1. Meeting my work place parameters for health discounts as best I can.
2. Asking for additional blood work to confirm wellness algorithms that might be outdated.
3. Patience while sound science gathers data, looking at multiple parameters, keeping hs-CRP =1 or less.
4. The clarity to learn, try full fat foods (avocados, coconut oil, grass-fed beef, olive oil), and resulting good health.
5. Use current blood work to fine tune my diet, in coordination with my doc and n=1.

What did not work in the past: anti-KPW
1. I would be having to pay even more for my health insurance and use it more. No discounts.
2. I ignored my blood work and bio-markers until I was very close to getting sick.
3. I would tow the low fat, high carb, "healthy whole grains" line spewed by many, ignoring being morbidly obese but trying to count my WW points better. 
4.  I was not thinking with a clear brain. I wished I could follow the "rules" but failed to take action when that was not the case.
5. Hey, my cholesterol was "normal" but my hs-CRP was 6.8. Whuuuut!!?? So much NOT healthy about that. Fitting my n=1 into a plan that did not work was not great.

Is there anyone else out there who has to get additional testing based on out of date wellness and blood marker algorithms? Which parameters and what worked?

This post was in no way short. Oh well.. ;)


Saturday, November 8, 2014

Why I don't lose my weight maintenance motivation - 1 key reason, 10 steps to get there

Moon set at Moonlight Beach, Encinitas, CA 11/8/2014
I was sipping my coffee at moon set- aka- sunrise today and thinking:

Why don't I lose motivation like all the other 40 years of yo-yo dieting?

Why don't I just wind down, quit, stop doing the things that keep me well? Return to the old ways?

Is it a combination of my 11 Keeping the Motivation reasons? (link)

One key idea popped into my head right before I hit the beach for a walk and photo session.


KEY REASON:  IT started with THE FOOD.   I use a Paleo-ish, low inflammatory food template.

1. It's the food.
2. The food is nutrient rich.
3. I spent a lot of time fine tuning my food template.
4. I've got my inflammation down so I can absorb the nutrients.
5. That optimized my body and mind, and nervous system.
6. I'm sleeping better and that leads to...
7.  More calm and relaxing thoughts. More access to the clear thinking part of my brain.
8  The result: making decisions from a place of strength.
9. I want more, more, more of the good feeling and food in a non-addictive way.
10. It started with food, always for me. It doesn't end with food, but it starts with food.

Anyhoo, that's what popped out of my head. I could be totally wrong. I don't think so. I'm going with my intuition which is always often right.

So many people say "It's not about the food". Okay, sure, they could be right. For me, it started with food, then I had the mind shift. Always. For me. Always starts and ends with food.  Accepting that takes me far and keeps me well. I feel very fortunate.

While I was on my walk, I enjoyed:

A. Podcast with Evan Brand and the great Terry Whals, MD (Not Just Paleo, episode #103).
  • Dr. Whals mentioned the health of our kids, the economy if diseases strike the young. The costs to society. 
  • Plus Dr. Whals is a good speaker over all.  I'll never get tired of hearing her story. 
B. Podcast Paleo Lifestyle and Fitness- Sarah Fragoso and Jason Seib  (episode #114)
  • I hold similar opinions on the Paleo Treats front. I did not change my diet to eat baked goods.
  • Sara and Jason will be answering more questions. Also lots of continued learning.
C. My first red cup coffee from Starbucks, Holiday Americano. Black. No Room.
 
Boom. Deep thoughts. 4.5 mile walk toodling around with the camera.
First Red Cup, Nov 8, 2014 Swami's, Encintias, CA


Friday, November 7, 2014

No Grains, No gains topic November 2014 - Keeping Motivated in Weight Maintenance

 Our Mission Statement : A group a of Primal/Paleo/Grain free women who blog about their experiences/life/benefits without grains. It’s a great way for others (who may be wanting to lose weight, reverse an acute/chronic health trend, and/or transition from commercial weight loss programs) to read about real life women who are living the life and succeeding!

No Grains, No gains topic November 2014 - Keeping Motivated in Weight Maintenance

Wow! What a topic. One simple sentence:  I feel better and that motivates me to keep what I've got. Somethings are deeper motivations, other things are more superficial. I'll take any motivation I can leverage for long term weight maintenance.

0. I picked the basic plan (Paleo-ish food template) that kept my body and mind well. I'm motivated to stick to my plan because I made a plan that fit me like a glove. I feel better.

1. Less emotional pain. Yeah, after 40 years of obesity, the thought of returning to the mental/emotional pain is just too freaking much. I feel like "myself".  The act of staying at a normal weight means that I'm not in a disconnected state emotionally. It's no fun- as a child, young adult, or middle aged woman to have extra weight, obesity, or morbid obesity. Emotionally, I'm just in a happier place, so I'll do quite a lot of work to keep my weight normal. I'm motivated because I feel better.

2. I'm in less physical pain. Yeah! Joint pain, migraine headaches, back pain, belly pain, gas pain, sinus pain. Very little pain. I'm pretty fortunate that I was able to get into a food template that helps me to eliminate the big and little sources of physical pain. Not everyone is so fortunate.  I'm motivated because, I feel better. 

3.  The food tastes great!  YEAH! I had no idea that food could both taste THIS good and be filling in a non-binge way. #NSNG (no sugars no grains) I just had no clue. Hyperpalatable junk food seemed like it was good, but not so much. Fresh real food tastes pretty fantastic. That motivates me even on my most tired days... Go. Cook. Something. Fast. Basic. YUM.  I'm motivated because real food helps me feel better. 
I don't always eat shrimp, but when I do, It's DARN good!


4. I feel full and comfortable after I eat. Yep. Because I eat to the food template that seems to work well for my mind and my body, I have a lot more normal "full" and "hungry" signals. I don't always get the right signals, but probably 80-90% of the time in year 2-3 of weight maintenance, I can sort out a binge urge from true hunger. I can feel satiated and some sort of normal brain to food signals. I told myself I may never reach this point. But, here I'm. I stay motivated because I value normal food/full signals, I feel better.

5. I have better mobility and movement. This is just from a pure functional movement aspect, I can reach, I can stretch, I can rest, I just have improved body mechanics that help me whip out of bed in the morning, perform house cleaning tasks better, move things at work easier, garden, shop, hike, and take underwater photos better. Tide pools and the submersible camera was really not happening as much. I can move more easily and that is very motivating when I can practice my life gifts, because I feel better.
Tide Pool Green Anemone- San Diego County, October 2014

6. I like my new clothes and feel comfortable in them. HEY, new clothes are part of it. I like the way my size 6, extra small or small clothes feel, fit, and I can make out like a bandit at second hand stores. Oh, so some of my community shops in boutiques in LA and then resells at used clothing stores where I can purchase at $12-14 dollars a pop for blouses? I'm up for that! Maybe $20 for designer jeans. Good for my closet and good for my budget. Great quality clothing that lasts. I've stopped many a binge in its tracks just for the pure fact that I've got a pair of favorite jeans I want to wear. Sound Petty? Who cares!? Zip, Zip, Hooray! It's just part of it. Bring it!  I stay motivated because I like the new, smaller clothing sizes, I feel better.

7. I have more mental clarity. I'm not stuck in funky mind loops thinking about food, so that gives me more time to focus on talking to my daughter, being in the moment, choosing to partake in almost all activities because I choose the activity based on a clear mind, not a "where can I get my next sugar fix". I place a high value on a clear mind, so I'm super motivated not to junk it up with foggy binge brain. I can think clearly, and that motivates me because I come from a place of strength instead of a place of false fixes, I feel better.

8. I look and feel younger. Much younger than my 48 years. I like to be in photos and look in the mirror. The hub bub over Renee Zellweger? Hey if she feels better, that's pretty awesome. I'm motivated because I like myself and I feel better.
2009 Processed food vs 2014 Gluten free, no sugars, no grains
9. I get $40-50 discount per month. Per MONTH on my health insurance discount. That's around $500 to 600 per year savings. Invest, travel, trip with my kid. Plus I just don't go to the doctor that much any more. I'm motivated because I can meet my financial goals just a little easier, because I feel better.

10. My bloggy friends that are motivated by a No Grains template and/or a major weight transformation. I'm not alone. I'm motivated because I know I'm not alone in feeling better.

Check out these blog posts by friends who also stay motivated: I'll bet they feel better, too.

Gwen at The Sunny Coconut: Nov 2014 topic
Jeanette at For Life: Nov 2014 topic
Leigh at Poonapalooza: Nov 2014 topic


Thursday, November 6, 2014

The stairs vs the escalator from Weighty Matters and Obesity Week in Boston

I was intrigued at the time lapse video that Yoni Freedhoff, MD captured at the Obesity Week Conference.

Link to the video  and Dr. Freedhoff's blog here

So, about 90-95% of the attendees took the escalator. Very, very interesting. There could be many reasons to do that. If I put myself into their shoes, I would take the escalator for these reasons:

 Rare Occurrence:
Mid-conversation where you are getting the best scoop ever from a highly respected colleague, your own knee problem, bout of positional vertigo from travel, hauling wheeled luggage.

My New Normal
( a person who had obesity for 40 years and is now normal weight (see I used people first language!) for 2.75 years)


1. I seek out places to walk from point A to Point B- example the Phoenix Airport, I'll walk the carpet
2. I'll  take the stairs in the hotel if it's 8 stories or less, if time permits.
3. I'll take the stairs at conference centers, malls, theme parks, events to get in 5-6 miles/day.
4. I'll seek out safe walking routes from the hotels for before, during, and after events.
5. I prioritize my time so that I can walk, because I use walking as a tool so I won't return to the obese state.
6. I have much gratitude that I reversed my obese state before I had major knee damage. I know that others are not as fortunate. 
7. I am also fortunate that I do not have other disease states (MS runs in my family) where the stairs are a mobility issue.

Here were my comments on the blog post:  Signs, follow the leader, peer pressure. The second video will be different than the first, in my opinion. Walking the Talk. Literally.
What I did when I was obese:  note:  I was able bodied then
1. I would use the escalator, elevator, walk ways while traveling
2. Never take the stairs, always elevator ( I would get winded)
3. I would avoid walking, or just use it to get from place to place.
4. I would walk 4-5,000 steps and be pretty tired.
5. I still walked a lot  for hiking when I was obese, but I sat much, much more.
6. I had joint pain, but didn't take effective action fast when I was obese. My tiny frame was not made for 70 extra pounds.
7.  I was slowly headed to less and less mobility at my own hand. Something I did have power over.


Okay, if you are able bodied- do you seek out walking? Would you have taken the stairs? I would have 95% of the time as part of my new normal.