My Body Finally Belongs To Me

This photo is from 2009. I worked out just as much, ran more and carried 20 lbs more.

This photo is from 2009. I worked out just as much, ran more and carried 20 lbs more.

After 3 years of eating gluten free, I have lost nearly 20lbs.

After 3 years of eating gluten free, I have lost nearly 20lbs.

I was recently frustrated with my oldest daughter regarding a conversation about eating gluten-free.  She is fine with sticking to the diet at home, but her question was what about a pizza party at school?  I explained to her it was her choice.  However, I would hope she would not have any.  She was very annoyed with me. 

Being the power kid she is, since before she could talk, I always have given her choices. If I make choices for her she simply rebels.  This time was no different. However, I did state my case as to why I thought she was very fortunate to have all the resources and information in life to be healthy.  I pointed out that her grandmothers, her aunt and her mother have not had the same fortune in life.

I spent the better part of my life sick, very sick from consuming gluten.  No doctor could tell me why I had a strange illness.  No doctor could tell me why at age 37 I had a low white blood cell count.  To add insult to injury, I was even called crazy regarding my illness.  It was not until a friend of my sister’s shared with her gluten intolerance that our family even had a clue to our problems. 

My sister and mother both have gluten intolerance.  Slowly, one by one we found the answers to our prayers.  I finally had the health others have enjoyed for a life time.  I know now that I suffered from this problem since birth.  When reading a book that included a list of symptoms, I had experience 50 out of the 100 over the course of my life.  Mysterious symptoms no doctor could ever diagnose. 

Today, I am living a much better quality of life.  The gluten intolerance made me suffer from many allergy symptoms, but also keep me from being able to burn fat.  Some people can not loss weight with this condition.  My whole life I was on a diet.  I would eat healthy and clean. I would be 15 lbs heavier that others.  I ran 20 miles a week. I couldn’t budge the pounds.  I tried the lean, clean, bodybuilding diet about 10 times.  It never worked for me. Well, not until I took out the final gluten component, oatmeal. 

Oatmeal is the most contaminate food, because it is processed with wheat.  Once I started eating gluten-free oat meal I felt remarkably better.  With in 24 hours I knew I had found the answer.  Over the course of a year, I dropped 15bls.  Finally, I had the answer.

Myself esteem was so damage from being overweight.  I understood if I ate poorly and didn’t exercise, but that was not the case.  I was exercising like crazy and eating clean.  I felt hopeless.  I felt like I had no control over my body.  It did what it wanted to do and it wanted to be fat.  After nearly 20 years of eating right and working out, I finally see the results others do in a matter of months.  I have muscle definition. I have energy. I am not sick in bed one week out of the month anymore.  I got a new start on life at age 41.

With my new start, I want to be lean and fit, something that my body would not allow me to do when I was younger.  I was made fun of for being fat as a child.  The child that had a half a sandwich, a piece of fruit and skim milk for lunch was fat. While the other children enjoyed ice cream and cookies with lunch, I was still fat.  I believe my passion for fitness and healthy eating stems from my life time of struggle.  It is true, I was not sneaking or cheating on my diets.  My body simply would not shed weight.  The gluten made me bloated and fat.  Today, I am challenging myself to be and have the lifestyle and body that I only dreamt of in the past.  I can be that woman. I have a control over my health now.  I have control over how my body looks.  I am grateful.

As for my daughter, I explained that I bet her grandmothers wished they had all the knowledge to have been able to prevent the disease they suffered from in life.  I told her she and her sister have all the tools and information to never suffer the illnesses of our family.  Quiet possibly they could live a life free of disease or illness.  She looked at my wide-eyed, and quietly understood.  It was a small triumph. She didn’t eat that slice of pizza!

April Progress Pictures: The Challenge Continues

progressMay

My own fitness challenges are never ending.  It seems the basics for lean eating that work for most have not always worked for me.  For one thing, being gluten intolerant keep me from being able to shed fat.  Upon giving up wheat and gluten, wheat protein, I lost 15lbs.  My progress is slow, but I can see it.  I suspect that my body is still healing and repairing from years of damage from eating gluten. I am still replenishing vitamins and minerals my body could not absorb during the gluten years.  I struggle with holding too much water in my body.  That could be a factor of being a woman of a certain age. 

I continue to research, adjust my diet and learn how to care for my own body.  In the end, I am unique and I have to figure out what works for me.  This is the progress today.  I am moving ahead slowly, surely. It is a process.  

Anti-Inflammatory Herbs and Spices

Reasearch is finding that ALL diseases are a result of inflammation in the body. Many foods cause inflammation in our diets, like white flour or sugar. Here is an easy way to fight inflammation, thus fight disease with these herbs and spices. Enhance your food, enhance your health.

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Sometimes History Is Worth Repeating. The Ways Of The Past

This is a photo of my great-grandmother and my father prior to arriving in the United States.

This is a photo of my great-grandmother and my father prior to arriving in the United States.

I grew up in a very ethnic family. I am first generation in the U.S., on my father’s side. My father’s family arrived in New York City via ship in 1951, following World War II from eastern europe. Their final settling place was Cleveland. I was blessed and I mean blessed to live with my grandmother and great-grandmother until I was 8 years old. At which point my family build a house in Medina, Ohio. I didn’t realize until this morning how much I learned and remembered from my days of living with my great-grandmother.

This morning my youngest daughter woke up feeling ill, cold like symptoms. I quickly searched my mind to remember what I had in the house to make chicken soup. Everyone knows chicken soup cures everything, at least in my family. Ironically, yesterday, she opened the freezer and inquired about a container that look like it had “puke” in it. I calmly explained it was left over chicken broth I had from baking chicken breasts a few months ago. The broth had some chicken in it, veggies and garlic. Coming from an old world family, my natural instinct is to freeze that for soup. I threw a few aging carrots in it, added more both and two cups of rice. Like magic we have homemade chicken and rice soup for dinner.

Feeling pretty proud of a great mothering moment, I stopped to reflect on how I knew what to do. My mother and father always make chicken soup when we were sick. How did they know this? There is only one person to blame, my great grandma. We called her Grandma Jaklitsch, well, because that was her name. Actually, come to think of it, all the so-called, natural cures for disease and healthy living isn’t really new. It is new to us, living several generations in a world of processed foods and chemicals, we have no idea what can naturally help us. But to Gramdma Jaklitsch knew healthy living was just living. There was no other way. She must have known what she was doing too, because she lived to be 88 years old, in a time when medical advancements were not present.

Immigrating to this country when she was 51 years old, she brought with her all the knowledge of old world medicine. She was a wonderful cook. Not that you were going to stay lean eating, solid, homemade, meals of meat and potatoes, but you would stay healthy. She cooked with tons of fresh garlic, and onions. Every meal had four or five course. Most meals started with soup, salad, then vegetables, meat, a carb, fruit and them some kind of homemade, out of this world, dessert. The point is her meals included all the things you needed. But she used things like apple cider vinegar in her salad dressing, fresh garlic, and onions. If you felt sick she gave you chamomile tea, with honey. Food was never wasted. The scraps, like egg shells, coffee grounds, one would use in composting, she would literally throw out the back door into her garden. Her flower gardens were beautiful. My guess is because of great composting. Most healthy living tips I run across my grandmothers were doing. Mostly, because they grew up in a world that did not offer an alternative. The only difference today, is the healthy living suggests have explanation as to why natural healing works.

I find in raising a family I do intuitively what my Grandma Jaklitsch would do. My parents did those things and I do them as well. I do crazy things like freeze left over chicken broth for soup later. I make crazy hot tea medicines for sore throats. I toss egg shells and coffee grounds into my flower gardens. My husband doesn’t say much. He figures it is some kind of quirk of my family. Then later we learn that quirk actually had merit. I just did it, because grandma did.

Here’s to Grandma Jaklitsch. I was blessed to have her in my life for 20 years. I learned so much from her without even knowing it. There isn’t a day I don’t miss her or carry on her legacy of the old world ways. It is of great comfort that she is still with me. I look forward to the day I see her again.

Delicious Treats: No Guilt Strawberry Frozen Treats

strawberries

Yes, I am a healthy nut! I admit it.  I am also human, having moments of wanting something sweet and delicious gets to me too.

I stumbled upon this little treat by accident.  A few weeks ago the grocery store had strawberries on sale a $1.00 a pound.  If you bought 10 lbs the 11lb of free.  Being a bargain shopper I scooped up those strawberries.  I planned to freeze most of them.  Seemed like a great idea at the time.  As it turns out, my girls do not enjoy frozen strawberries, They just like fresh ones. Hmmm, now I have a problem. In a mid afternoon fit of a sugar craving, I solved my problem.

I took on strawberry out of the freezer, microwaved it for 20 seconds and dipped it in Stevia. Oh my, that was delicious! It tastes very much like a frozen fruit bar.  So for a yummy guilt free, healthy treat, frozen strawberries, slightly defrosted, with Stevia on them does the trick! A bit of heaven was discovered. The next time Meijer’s has strawberries 10 for 10 with the 11 free, I will be loading up the cart.  Who cares what my kids think?!?  No one said they have good taste!

From Processed Food Junkie To Real Food Junkie

 

 

This article included a fast tip guide to easily transition from processed foods to whole foods. It is really important to learn why this is important for your health.

http://www.greenplaterule.com/health-nutrition/from-processed-food-junkie-to-real-food-junkie/

My New Love: Apple Cider Vinegar The Miracle Cure

I recently discovered the benefits of apple cider vinegar.  I suffer from all kinds of issues, water retention being one of them.  My theory is that my body still has not recovered from years of eating gluten.  Gluten can be very damaging to a person that can not tolerate it.  As I continued to heal from not being exposed to gluten, I am also in the need of repairing my body. 

I started drinking apple cider vinegar in my tea daily.  I have only done it for three days, but I can see a different all ready.  It truly does remove the edema, water retention.  I have lost some weight. A side benefit, I feel better mood and energy wise.  That seems to be a miracle since I stopped drinking coffee this week. 

Apple Cider Vinegar seems to have miracle like properties to improve health.  It has countless uses to cure every aliment under the sun.  For those suffering from serious problems, like high blood pressure, diabetes or high cholesterol, apple cider vinegar has wonderful curing effects.  I just caution you to make sure it is safe to take with any medications you are taking, because it will drop your blood pressure farther. 

If you want to try apple cider vinegar make sure you get the unpasteurized. You can find it at any health food store.  The minerals in the vinegar acts to replace what our bodies are missing and it detoxes the liver.  Below is a great article that explains it all in detail.  I am going to make it a part of my daily routine for good health. 

http://horizonsmagazine.com/blog/?p=12731

Clean Eating For The Whole Family- Dinner Is Served

Gluten Free Kid Friendly Meal

Gluten Free Kid Friendly Meal

Here is a new recipe I created.  It is a meal that is completely gluten free and all natural.  Some ingredients are organic, but not all.  It is very simple to make.  I don’t like spending a lot of time cooking.  I love baking and will spend hours doing that, but when preparing a meal I want it fast and painless.  🙂

Spaghetti Bake

8 oz Gluten Free Spaghetti

36 oz. Organic Crushed Tomatoes or Tomato Sauce

Oregano

Basil

1 lb ground turkey

Parmesan Cheese

Cook spaghetti as directed, in a frying pan cook ground turkey with oregano and basil, drain spaghetti, in a glass baking dish layer, sauce, then spaghetti, then meat, then cheese, repeat three times.  Bake in oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

We will see how the kids like it.  Update to follow!