Friday, April 26, 2013

Crustless Egg and Onion Quiche- Whole30 compliant

Here is a recipe for my Crust less Egg and Onion Quiche. The caramelized onions with cumin really add a nice touch of sweetness to this breakfast dish. The quiche can be made in advance and reheated for a grab and go breakfast. Pair with avocado and tomato slices. Oh, and it's Whole30 compliant. Cheering on my blogging buddies who are/will be doing the Whole30 in May.

6 organic eggs
1/2 cup of coconut milk (check to make sure it's 100% coconut milk)
1 white onion
Sea salt
coconut oil
1 tsp cumin

Pre-heat oven to 350F

Slice the onion and place in a pan. Saute using the coconut oil, a sprinkle of sea salt and the cumin. Saute until the onions are translucent and starting to brown and caramelize.

While the onions are sauteing, scramble 6 eggs in a large bowl, add the coconut milk, and stir well.
Grease a pie pan with coconut oil. Pour the eggs in greased pie pan, then sprinkle on the caramelized onions. Sprinkle a bit of sea salt (to your taste)  Bake for 25-30 mins.

The result is an egg and onion slice of heaven. Great change up from scrambled eggs. I'll re-heat the slices for 2-3 days. Jr. Family Member approved.

If you are arriving to the blog from the most recent podcast, welcome! I will post a link to the podcast later. Loved chatting with Dietitian Cassie and Kevin. Good stuff. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Earth Day 2013 - celebration and excitement on the trail (snakes!)

Southern Pacific Rattlesnake
the whole rattlesnake
 Earth Day 2013. Southern California.

Major excitement, celebration, and I got  some great photos, too.

 I walk for weight maintenance, almost most everyday at lunch. Luckily, I was looking ahead on the trail when I spotted this beautiful, yet somewhat scary looking snake.

I was able to back up and warn my walking partner quickly. As I was backing up, dust blew in the air, and I could see that this was indeed a Southern Pacific rattlesnake (poisonous). I was able to get a safe distance away from the snake and take a few photos with my zoom lens. The rattlesnake was about 2 feet long.
As I was photographing the rattlesnake, my walking buddy warned me of a second snake. Holy Smokes! About 10 feet away, there was a 4 foot gopher snake (not poisonous) even further out on the trail. I was able to safely scoot around the snake on the trail and get even more photos.
Gopher snake

Gopher Snake close up

Two snakes, ten feet apart, gopher snake in the foreground
 What works:

1. Walking at lunch time helps me maintain my weight
2. Keeping a sharp eye out for shape, movement, and color kept me from stepping on this snake
3. Walking with a buddy keeps me a little safer.
4. Keeping cool and calm helped in assessing the situation and staying safe, and getting these awesome photos. Safety first!

What does not work:
1. Not walking enough, I'll gain some weight back.
2. Not paying attention to surroundings.
3. Walking by myself is not as safe.
4. Loosing your cool and getting into more trail trouble.

We did  a little bit of excited screaming (like school girls!) at a twig that looked like a third snake further down the trail. I hope I don't loose my walking buddy! What a day to remember. Awesome, scary, fun! Wow. Totally Southern California style celebration of Earth Day 2013. Love it.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Food Environment matters - Labels red & green

I was inspired by this article by Hemi Weingarten at Foodeducate about the green and red labels on a Twixt bar. Article hereI've started a 10 day experiment where I posted two colored sheets of paper on a counter, separated by a sink.  Food is often placed on the counter in the area.

On a clip board, I ask 2 questions. 

1. Does the color of the label influence you to choose food from the green side of the counter?
2. Does the color of the label influence you to bring in foods from the green side of the counter.

Time will tell. One person did state that she stopped and thought about it.  I think labels and colors do influence us. I will report back on the influence of the labels at the end of the month.

What works:
1. Stopping and thinking before I grab food from a shared space. (food quality is low, most days)
2. Only bringing Paleo/Primal foods to potlucks.

What did not work:
1. Eating free for all in shared spaces
2. Bringing all kinds of crap food to potlucks so I could binge on sweets "contribute".

Do colors and labels influence you? More to post about next week on this topic.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Thinking of Boston and those effected today

Thinking of those killed, injured, their families, the first responders, those in and around the Boston area and the running community.

Peace be upon us.

The best thing I can do is monitor myself and my eating,  and take care of myself so that I can use my given gift as a health care worker for those who are sick.

Also, by taking care of myself I can parent the best way possible as a mother of a daughter who will also bring her gifts to the community.

 Thinking of you all today.

Monday, April 15, 2013

The answer is not in the pantry- keeping a clean food environment

I used to reach for all sorts of snacks, mainly in the pantry at night. Looking for some self soothing, looking for the answer to stress, anxiety, and peace.  (I talked about this in the Quit Binge Eating interview with Alen Standish- episode 20

The answer is NOT in here. Pictured are my off plan Paleo foods. I have some, sometimes. Those foods don't trigger, but I can still choose to use them. In a positive way as part of my meal. Or like a drug, to self sooth, self medicate, and numb out from problems. Especially at night. I can use them in the wrong way or the right way as part of my regular plan. The choice is mine.

The answer was and still is inside me. Better coping and thinking techniques. Choosing unprocessed foods, good cuts of protein, veggies, and fruits with avocados, olive oil, good spices, some pink sea salt.  Walking, listening to music, photography, gardening.

Food is fuel to give me energy to do those things. Food is medicine so my body can stay well, low inflammatory, good sleep, strong bones and muscles. Food is not entertainment. Food is not a "treat" an "indulgence". Food is not a drug used to feel small bits of happiness.

Clean your environment: I just found a few more areas in my pantry- way back in on the shelves where my former food habits were stored. Holy Smokes. I got that stuff pulled out and tossed, quick. No wonder I was stuck in the cycle. I can see it now, I could not then. I was living "under the influence".

Now that I'm out with more clarity, more sanity, and some time- I can see clearly now.  Tricky to keep and remain food sober long enough to see. So worth it. Fog clears and it helps.

What works

1. Paleo/Primal template 90-95% of the time
2. Off paleo foods 5% of the time. As long the food does not trigger me.
3. Keeping my shelves, web surfing, shopping, and hobbies trigger free.
4. Pausing and asking myself, what do I need right now (sleep, walk, stress relief) before eating.
5. Eating if I'm hungry.

What didn't work
1. Eating processed -sugar, wheat, boxed foods
2. Eating trigger foods that kept me hooked and obese
3. Buying trigger foods when I was "committed to losing weight. Train wreck right there. Reading how to make "low fat" Cooking light bar cookies, looking at Pinterest desserts. No, just NO.
4. Automatically thinking that what I was feeling was hunger ( it was not! )
5. Feeling bad about eating because I had "already used my WW points for the day OR I was saving up to .... eat trigger foods. Stuck in the cycle.

Healing started when I got real about what I was doing, buying, storing, and my habits. I strongly encourage all who struggle to look closely, change your environment, change your habits. The answer is inside you.  You are worth it!

This photo would look different with fog and clouds

Friday, April 12, 2013

Interview on Quit Binge Eating- episode 20, my story, in my own words

I had the awesome opportunity to answer questions on Podcast 20 at Quit Binge Eating by Alen Standish
- Link to iTunes

 Alen's blog

If you have about an hour and want to listen to me chatting about my former binge/emotional/compulsive eating, this podcast is for you.

Usually, I feel like this Great Blue Heron. Okay, I'm short, maybe a little green heron. ;)

Sometimes I like to blend in like this dusky wing butterfly.

I'm so glad I did the podcast. It took a lot of strength, and I was pretty nervous.

I believe that by removing processed foods, I've not only found a good way to maintain, but a good way to keep from binge/emotional types of overeating.

I'm glad to have found the support of other bloggers who join me in eliminating processed foods and share about that. Thank you!


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Bio-markers- my own improvements with weight loss and a low inflammatory diet

I'm a total graph/data person. I'm also a scientist in the health care field. So my bio-markers (AKA- blood work) are important to me.

Looking at my blood work data encouraged me to:
1. Loose weight.
2. Lower my fasting blood glucose (and HA1c)
3. Lower my blood pressure.
4. Increase my HDL
5. Lower my triglycerides
6. Lower my HDL/cholesterol ratio (lower ratio/lower risk)
7. Lower my CRP (r)  (inflammation marker)

A lot of my blood work was in the "normal" range, but the values were not optimal.  I would not say I was particularly healthy at the higher weight.  I am so glad I did not wait for a major health event before I gained some clarity and started removing the barriers to weight loss.

Both weight loss and low inflammatory foods opened up more than just a thinner body. I'm in a healthier life. The combination opened up a much wider benefit than I could ever imagine. I feel younger now than when I did in my 20's. Fountain of youth! 
In 2010, I was about 60-70 pounds over weight.

In 2011, I was about 20 pounds over my current weight and 7 pounds over my "healthy BMI" and using Take Shape for Life (Medifast) during weight loss.

In 2012, I was switched over to a mainly Paleo/Primal low inflammatory.

What worked:
1. Taking action
2. Loosing weight
3. Eating low glycemic
4. Eating low inflammatory Paleo/Primal (no grains, no to very low processed sugar)
5. Setting up a sustainable plan to avoid re-gain and old habits.

What did not work in the past:
1. Not taking action (I wouldn't even want to look at the blood work)
2. Weight gain
3. Eating higher glycemic foods
4. Eating grains, pasta, breads and baked goods
5. Falling back into old habits and lack of structure.

Geek out on the graphs below (I used the Gazelle app to create the nifty graphs below)

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Why I weigh in daily- rule 3, steps 1 and 2 from Refuse to Regain

I'm getting back to my blogging about the book Refuse to Regain- by Barbara Berkeley, MD (blog). Today, rule 3, steps 1 &2 weigh properly and use the right equipment.

I highly recommend this book when you are 10-20 pounds from your transition from loosing weight to maintaining weight. Or, if you are struggling at maintenance weight. The longer you've been overweight and the more weight that you've lost, the more helpful the book is, in my opinion.

READ this FIRST: I know that the paleoshere does not like the scale as a metric/tool over all. I totally get that and why the scale is not helpful in some cases. I respect that.  Whole9 has 5 reasons to break up with your scale . Jason Sieb has an excellent article Attention Scale Addicts. This post was so popular it brought down the Everyday Paleo Web site once it was posted. Believe me, I get it. I understand why people don't weigh in at all.

What works for me (on my soap box now....)
Weighing in daily works for me as a tool. After 40 years of being overweight, being made fun of in school, feeling like crap, looking ill, being ill, avoiding the scale, slippery slope thinking, emotional eating leading to mini-binges and not so mini-binges, having cruel things said to me day-in-day out by people I know, and people I don't know, and worst off saying bad things to myself..... weighing in daily works for me. Not weighing in daily feeds my chronic obesity ways that keep me sick.

Daily weighing worked for me as a younger person and works for me now. Long before  I discovered Paleo, for a year and half after I discovered Paleo. Because it works for me, I have a spine, a good sense of self- I use the daily weighing tool. Unapologetic. Bravely. Data. Recorded. Done.Move along.
 I promised myself on a hot day in April 2011 that I would systematically remove all barriers to a healthy weight that stood before me and I would work to my best ability day-in-day out for the rest of my life. Because being overweight was becoming or would become life threatening for me if I did not get and keep control.  For me that means weighing daily. It is not my fault I was born this way. It's 100% my responsibility to use the tools that make and keep me well. No excuses. No following lemmings over a cliff.

Stepping off my soap box right now. Feel free to disagree or do something different.

From the Refuse to Regain Book, - rule 3 steps 1&2- Weigh Properly and use the right equipment.

Step 1- I only weigh in the morning, first thing. I  don't weigh in during vacations.
Step 2- Use a scale that weighs to the tenths, different scales will have different numbers. I still attend a WW meeting to interface with other maintainers in real life. That scale is 3-4 pounds higher. I do not care about that.

It's data. I record it, I review the last months set of lowest weights for trending, and I move on about my day. No guilt. I do reflect and think- are the food amounts and types okay for me?  Is my slippery slope thinking contributing to an upward trend? A trigger food?   I'm a scientist in real life. I can use tools and data to help along the way if needed at home, too. It's my perfect right to pick the tools that I need.

What works for me
1. Daily weighing and recording of data at My Fitness Pal.
2. Looking at weight trends over 1,2,3 months.
3. Opening up a goal weight range to account for strength training
4. Looking at my food diary and seeing what foods/habits may be impacting an upward trend.
5. Looking at solutions and positive self talk.
6. Weighing in once a day, only in the morning and using only that data.

What does not work for me:
1. Not weighing in at all.
2. Not addressing upward trends on the scale.
3. Not strength training.
4. Not connecting the trigger foods with an upward trend in weight.
5. Not problem solving and having negative self talk, not taking effective action.
6. Getting hung up on the number on the scale at the doctors office or WW being different.

Feel free to share your experiences in the comments.

Friday, April 5, 2013

14 month weight maintenance update- the graphs

Highest Weight 187.4
Current Weight 116.4
Goal weight Range
Height 5'1"
age: Mid to upper 40's
Months in weight maintenance 14

What worked:
1. Adding weight range, to account for weight training.
 2. Eliminating pork helps me feel better.
 3. Spent time photographing other people's gardens.

What did not work:
1. Stressing about the number on the scale.
2. Adding back in pork. Whoa. Some sadness. I'm over it.
3. Not taking time to go to bed earlier.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Podcasts, I'm coming out of my shell April 2013

 No Joke Monday- April brings podcast showers....
I was interviewed for the "Quit Binge Eating Podcast" by Alen Standish- blog link is here 
Alen is having conversations with friends series. I can really relate to many of the things that Alen talks about and what Christina talks about in her episode.

 In a few weeks, you'll be able to listen to me talk about my story in my own squeaky/nasal voice for 20-30 minutes. I'll link to it from my blog.

The podcast was scary fun- fun  to record (google hang out), but also scary to get real about telling my food/emotional eating history. Fun to be able to talk about what works. I know it's often said that transparency is the new currency. And, I know by telling our stories, we can help others. I so know I'm not alone in this.

Alen has created a free, web based app called Binge Buddy . Check it out if you find yourself eating off the rails for whatever reason.

I'm set up for another podcast in later April, too. I'll blog about that, too!  It's so fun to learn new things. And, podcasts keep me motivated, learning and growing.

What works
1. Finding a safe environment to talk.
2. Getting help and support from outside myself- friends, counseling.
3. Getting off trigger foods - processed sugar/wheat/grains/salty snacks

What didn't work
1.  Talking to people who were not helping me.
2. Not seeking out support when I knew I needed it. 
3. Eating junk food because others told me I would binge without them!!?? I call baloney on that in my experience. I accept that for others reality, but the reverse is true for me.

Fossil shell layers- exposed