Saturday, December 20, 2014

Pre-Christmas Saturday 2014- odds and ends, glucose monitoring, coconut milk, and shiny doughnuts

** Trigger warning, I have a top trigger food in a photo at the very end of this post**  I'll give you a warning before the photo arrives.

Here's what's working:

1.  Glucose monitoring:
Waking up this pre-Christmas Saturday very thankful I didn't dive into the  Standard American Diet at the Holidays.  Holy Smokes!!!! I can promise you my fasting blood glucose would not have been 84 mg/dL before breakfast.

2. Full Fat Coconut milk: Home made special coffee. Recipe:
1/4 cup coconut milk
Cinnamon sprinkles

I found some cans of full fat coconut milk, Natural Value, Ingredients = Coconut Extract, water. Frasier Farms. $2.79. Typically I use the Trader Joe's light coconut milk $ 0.99 (not because it's less fat, because the ingredients are only coconut and water and it's cheap and easy to find.). Finding coconut milk without the guar gum or xanthan gum is difficult. Additives can trigger a binge in about  60 seconds after consuming.
* doughnut talk*

 3. Reading Vera Tarman, MD,"Food Junkies" Book. I can totally relate! I had the book in my purse when a person dropped off 2 dozen shiny, glazed doughnuts in the break room. I whipped out that book and said "Hey look, those doughnuts are as shiny as the doughnuts on the cover of this book...."

We had a good laugh and a great conversation about the book.

 I had several great conversations later that morning.  Lots of people identified with it. What could have been a tough day was no big deal, because I don't moderate the foods of my addiction. Remission and recovery means I manage EVERYTHING I put in and on my body, including shiny doughnuts.  I thank my higher power every single morning that I had clarity to own that practice. Food template, Every single meal. No matter how shiny those doughnuts were. (photo at the end of this post)
I stopped binging on sugar in 2011, diabetes stopped!

What didn't work in the past:
1. I didn't monitor my glucose: Except watching it go higher and continuing to binge on sugar. Starting to monitor at home, between blood draws is an awesome tool on a very silent disease.

2. Consuming additives that kept me binging.  Yes, yes, I know that guar gum is "natural" but it totally messes with my brain. This additive = binge urges  Forget it. I've had 40 years of binge eating. I'm done with knowingly triggering myself and to stay healthy, I don't consume these additives. Here's some more reading at Chris Kresser's site Interesting that I can tolerate soy lecithin, but not the gums. So glad to have been food sober long enough to ID and remove this substance.

3. Moderating sugar and grains, towing the WW moderation line:

Counting WW points and moderating shiny doughnuts just didn't work. Eating sugar and wheat = binge. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. I really felt like I should make myself moderate. To diet harder. What I was really doing was going toward pre-diabetes faster. Yikes! Glad I stopped moderating sugar and grains.

Here's to doing what works, Holiday's last a few weeks. Here's to setting up 2015 for success. How are you setting yourself up for 2015?

**** Trigger food photo warning*******
Using the tools in Food Junkies to navigate shiny doughnuts

Saturday, December 13, 2014

4th Christmas abstaining from grains, sugars, and holiday baking- getting back more than I gave up!

One of the great gifts I gave myself when I began abstaining (gluten and sugar for weight loss, then grains and most sugars in weight maintenance) Christmas 2011, was my first time since the late 1970's that I got clean at Christmas.

Ghost Of Christmas past: One of my big gifts was the snipet of clarity from stopping binge eating while I lost weight. I remembered that one Christmas I gave all my candy to a family member. The late 1970's.  "Take it all, I want none" I told my family member. I was probably the age my daughter is now, 14. Somehow my teenage brain just wanted a break from the yo-yo dieting, the binge eating, the highs and the lows. That was the first time I could remember stopping binge eating since age 6. It's all my kid brain could do.

More recently: Flash forward to 2011-2012. Those two Christmases had me pacing and having lots of binge urges Christmas eve, some Christmas days. Major white knuckling paid off. I stayed clean, off sugar, grains and the voice that said, "It's Christmas, eat one paleo treat, cookie, fudge, you can go walk it off Christmas morning". More pacing. Thank my Higher Power for Angry Birds, Christmas music, and some spiced tea.

Current thoughts: Each time I give up something that kept me binge eating. It's really not my fault. It's nothing I'm doing Christmas wrong. I don't need to Paleo harder. I certainly don't need to learn to moderate all foods. That only fuels my binge eating. And I know it. I had to get so honest with myself. Clarity, honesty, willingness to change traditions and simplify. To walk away from this blog and do the work.

Starting more than I stopped:  (aka- what works, what didn't work)

What didn't work:
1. Stopped holiday baking and food gift giving
2. Stopped binge eating to numb
3. Stopped decorating the house so much
4. Stopped trying to put up a traditional tree that the cats would demolish each night.
5. Stopped going to cookie parties.
6. Stopped enabling others by giving non-food gifts.
7. Stopped feeling obligated to go to church related activities.( bell ringing excluded- Jr. Family member is a champion ringer)  Such a stress relief!( I listen, smile, clap, and sneak out the door to one of the best beaches on the West Coast... my higher power is found on the beach)
8. I stopped feeling out of control, guilty, sad, and stopped hating myself.
9. I stopped gaining 5 pounds each Christmas and making false promises of Jan weight loss.

 What works now
1.Started to listen to Christmas music more often.
2. Started to hit the beach for super long walks.  Yep! nothing better than the ocean.
3. Started to sleep more and watch less TV
4.  Started to connect more to friends and family.
5. Started to travel more to places like Hotel Del Coronado and Christmas on the Prado (San Diego)
6. Started to use spices (cinnamon, peppermint extract) for some coffee add-ins, with coconut milk.
7. Started giving more to charities ( My favorite is Heifer Project, flock of chicks, yes!)
8. Started simplifying gift wrapping
9. Started giving more gift cards, no guilt, just less stress
10. Started taking more holiday photos
11. Started taking evening walks and enjoying other people's light displays.
12. I started living more fulling, stone cold food sober.
13. I started living long term weight maintenance fully.

I started more than I started. That's one heck of a gift.  Here's to eating within your food template, your plans, and OWNERSHIP like a freaking holiday BOSS. Weight maintenance for a 2014 holiday WIN!

Yeah.... Ho, Ho, Ho... Safe travels my friends. This holiday will come and go. Put yourself firmly as the driver of your sled, sleigh, car, and life. Best. Christmas. Gift. Ever.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

2 years, 10 months weight maintenance update- photos, graphs, Yeah! same old same old...

May 2011 (before) and December 2014  (after)
 Nothing to see here... BORING... Repetitive, Bah, blah, blah.. move along if you don't like graphs and long term weight maintenance.... drama free... nothing to see here...

I'm joking... laugh a little... ;)
 Long term weight maintenance: In year 2, I haven't found it to be full of up down and all around and heaps of drama.  That's a good thing.

Highest weight: 187.4
Current weight: 115.8
Weight Range: 113-119
Height 5'1"
Age: 48
Menopause: 2 years
Years yo-yo dieting: 40
Food sober: 3.5 years

I have found long term weight maintenance to be:  Day in, day out work. Cooking, washing dishes, keeping stress and sleep in check. Keeping emotions in check. Putting myself first that way. Getting and giving support. A real snoozer. Yes repetitive, possibly "boring". Food tastes great. I feel awesome. A lot of overall work. A lot of not going back to old patterns.

Real food, binge management. I do the work. Each of us has to pick our goals, make a plan, then walk away from the blog and do the work. No other way to get the job done.

Every.Day.No.Matter.What.Constant.Vigilance. Show.Up.Do.The.Work.  

Yeah. Another month. Really, most people don't make it to long term without a regain, so each meal, each day, each week, month, and each year is a win for me. I re-gained every loss for 40 years. Very, very worth stepping out of that cycle,  in terms of QOL- quality of life.

The not so great: I had dental work this month that triggered my vertigo. I couldn't eat for 2 days straight. I lost 4 pounds. I don't recommend that kind of weight loss! I did get some meds and got re-hydrated so I avoided urgent care for an IV. Win and less money for health care bills, too. Now when I have to go to the dentist, I can take my anti-nausea meds and not be so effected. Whew!

The kind of cool: One curious thing: I was not really hungry due to being fat adapted. I was very thirsty, but really, I can turn over to burning body fat and most likely slipped into ketosis. That was very handy. 

I have 1,000 blog posts in my head and about 10 topics to cover. Maybe I can get 5-6 posts out during the rainy times here on the coast. Sleep and photography are taking up a lot of time. Fun stuff. I avoid a bunch of holiday stress. And, I sure don't shovel back holiday sweets.

Karen: the Holiday Grinch: Someone shows up with a plate of cookies, holiday fudge... who cares?... boring... My food template is set. EZ decisions. No stress. No hating myself after indulging.  No need to jack up my insulin, glucose, ghrelin, and letpin. What's the point?

I'll show up Jan 3, 2015 with another same-old-same-old set of stats, clothes and jeans that fit, and another food sober holiday down. And, that is okay by me. Another win. I called it.

Now to make it so..

Here's what's working

1.Weighing daily
2. Eating only what I bring for lunch, paleo-ish food template.
3. No holiday baking or tasting. My food sobriety demands that, my mitochondria demand that.
4. Walking 5 miles daily, most days. 12,000+ steps.
5. Long walks at the beach.
6. Getting and giving support.
7. Cat photos (for Katie, very end of this post)

What didn't work in the past:
1. Avoiding the scale
2. Eating and binging on lots of food at work, not sticking to a food template.
 3. Baking cookies to give to other people so I had a free ticket to binge!!!
4. Walking 4-5,000 steps a day and sitting a lot during waking hours.
5. Short trips and avoiding hills due to being morbidly obese.
6. Not being open to support that I desperately needed.
7. Not being fully into my favorite hobby- photography, because I was too busy binge eating and numbing out with food.

 Katie: There's a whole lot of Tortitude going on daily at my house. I've never had tortoiseshell cats until 2012. They are great cats. Very quiet, very funny. Adopted from the local shelter. Sisters.
(Cat One =food obsessed & Cat two = play based)= 2X Tortitude

Thursday, December 4, 2014

No Grains, No Gains December 2014- off Paleo foods- what kind, how many?

Dec 2014 Topic: Off Primal/Paleo eating, we all have some off paleo/primal foods.
1. What off template foods do we enjoy?
2. How do we know we can eat them without returning to the Standard American Diet (SAD)?

I eat a few off- Paleo foods, but not many. I get easily triggered to binge eat so I had to get very, very honest about what I could and couldn't eat. I had to be very truthful and kind to myself and just walk away from "Paleo-fied treats".  For me honesty = relief and results.

 Binge eating, migraines, inflammation... some of my off plan eating can hit me in unpleasant ways. Here's what works:

1. Chocolate: 85% or higher. Half a serving. No more. Once a day. Sometimes I skip a day or two (once or twice a week).  I  eliminated chocolate during my Whole30 in Jan 2013 and in the Low Carb Challenge April 2013. I had no issues bringing the chocolate back in, no side effects, no binge eating, no slippery slope eating. There might be 2-4 grams of sugar a serving. With the fat, I can tolerate it. Over 4 grams, I will start to get binge brain.

2. A teeny canola and vegetable oil. The seaweed snack (see below) has some canola oil. So did the vegetables at a Mexican restaurant (peppers and onions) during a family eat out at a local favorite hangout.
A small amount of vegetable oil once and again is unavoidable if I'm eating outside the home.  If I'm traveling on a longer vacation, I will start to notice a stomach ache after a while when consistently exposed to vegetable oil. Even more so if it's corn based. Once I switch back to my regular food template, I feel better.

3. Regular ground beef or non-organic meat (vs grass fed). If my budget and/or shopping trip doesn't allow, then I'll buy regular ground beef, or lean cuts of beef at Costco. I do the best I can and I don't worry to much about it.

4. Coffee, I drink it with good effects. I like it.

That's about it. I don't really go off my food template much. Physical and emotional pain. I had 40 years of that. Reversing a lapse is serious business for me (binge eating). It's hard to get stopped and once I start, I can cycle for days, weeks, and months. It's no joke. So I take it pretty seriously, with a good outcome. I like being off the "to binge or not to binge cycle". My eating, health, thoughts, nerves are much more even an very few urges to binge eat. It's worth it, to me, to stay on track.

What didn't work in the past:
1. Eating high sugar chocolate ( counting WW points for truffles had me eating/binge eating LOTS)
2. I used to think canola oil was "heart healthy". That olive oil would cost too many WW points (hangs head... )
3. I bought the cheapest, leanest cuts of meat... and they were dry and tasted terrible...., but I loaded up with lots of baked chip toppings, corn tortillas, and low point "stuff" to "lose more weight faster!" It didn't work so well.
4. I've always had coffee, except for my first trimester of pregnancy. But I loaded the coffee up with blue packets and skim milk or all kinds of flavored coffee creamer- sigh...

Okay, go check out my No Grains, No Gains bloggy friends. It's fun to see what works for different people.

Gwen at The Sunny Coconut:
Jeanette at For Life:
Leigh at Poonapalooza

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Post Thanksgiving round up Nov 2014 in Weight Maintenance

Thanksgiving Dinner, So Cal Style 2014

 Post Thanksgiving follow up Nov 2014 in weight maintenance

What worked:

1. Stayed on my Paleo-ish food template. Turkey, mixed greens, tomatoes, pomegranates, garlic salt, sparkling water with orange slice. White balsamic vinegar and olive oil.

2. Beach walk by myself, walk with family, photography, napping, and reading.

3. More walking, visiting with the family.

4. New camera arrived... more fun outdoors and time in my favorite hobby. I spend more time in a flow state, meditating and concentrating and being myself with a camera in my hand than anything else. Nice to practice my given gifts.

Dana Point, CA

Dana Point, CA with Catalina Island at Sunset
What didn't work in the past:
1. Eating whatever and triggering a binge- food type, stress, and soothing were all old themes that no longer play out in my holiday routine.

2. I would hang out inside, near the food.

3. Less visiting with the family and walking. More time thinking what kind of sugary, carby food I could binge on next! The next false fix, where and how much could I eat.

4.  I took photos, but I didn't spend much time in a flow state. My gifts were not used at their best level.

Here's to eating to live and not living to eat. It's nice to have my body and brain in sync. 

Woke up the last 2 days, no food hang over, clothes still fit, energetic, engaged and ready to live life another day.

I'm thankful that I became "boss" of how I feel and how I eat.  I'm also thankful that I understand how much down the rabbit hole I could go by eating off food template. Yeah, food sobriety allows me to live a whole different life.

Onward. If you ate off your food template, you can always get right back on this very next meal. Think about the kind of life and health you want. Choose well.

Cat's are already tired of the new camera flash

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.