Archives

Do we really know how much sugar we take in every day??

We have been watching a lot of documentaries about sugar and it’s crazy how much we really want to cut it out of our diet for good.  The hard thing is…almost EVERYTHING has sugar in it.  Its frustrating that the food industry is making it so hard for us.  We just have to be smarter about our choices we make. It CAN be done :D

I did a little experiment with a day of food I USED to eat and put sugar in a bowl to show myself how much sugar I was REALLY getting vs how much I THOUGHT I was getting.  It was amazing!  I was shocked…well, after watching a youtube video on it, I wasn’t really shocked…because I already knew I was overdoing it on sugar.  I was shocked however, as I watched that show, just learning how much sugar each item actually had in it! I will find that link and add it here later for you. 

Do yourself a favor and figure it out for yourself and just see how much sugar your ingesting each day.  I bet you too will be amazed.  Take a bowl and set a tsp in it, for every 4 grams of sugar you ingest, put a tsp of white sugar in a bowl…so if it has 12 grams of sugar, put 3 tsp of sugar into a bowl.  Do this for EVERY item you eat/drink.  If it doesn’t have a label, google it.    Do this throughout the day.  Share it here with me if you decide to try it out please.  I would love to see your results!   Just check the label and it will tell you how many grams of sugar each serving has.  Make sure you remember that if you have more then a serving, add that extra sugar to your bowl as well.  Don ‘t guess, measure everything.  If you have salad dressing, measure a serving out (usually 2 tbs) because we usually ALWAYS have over a serving.  A bottle of soda is over a serving, so add that extra if you have a whole bottle. 

Keep in mind that a women should only have about 5 tsp of sugar per day (20 grams), that’s not a whole lot!  Some say that it’s ok to ingest 10 tsp…even at that, it’s not a lot considering that some single food items are over that! If your having over that, weight gain and health issues will eventually find you. 

So please, check this info out for yourself and watch a few documentaries about it and what it does to your body.  Cancer being a big one, heart disease being another.  It’s worth looking into…if not for yourself, for your children.  Times have changed SO much and they are at serious risk.  Get rid of sugar out of their diets so they can thrive and live a long healthy life without so many health issues.  They will thank you for it later! 

We are back!~

I can’t tell you how happy I am to be back!  By back, I mean back on our Whole Foods Journey.  One thing I can tell you is once you “take a break” be it however long, it’s NOT easy to get back into the grove of things. 

We have let ourselves slip and started eating bad food here and there…started off with me going to MO for a few weeks to be with my grand babies and my kiddos and I told myself it was “ok” to not stay on it just for a few weeks.  Right?  Well, it didn’t do me ANY good and it sure didn’t do my son any good.  He got his head aches back full force (almost daily again), I got my knee pain back because I gained weight back (not all I lost, but a lot for only being a few months), hubby got his allergies back and my back started hurting again.  ALLL those things had went away after we were on our whole foods diet for just 10 days…well all except my knee and back pain..those took about a month but they went away!  NOW we are dealing with everything again because we took a break. 

We learned a hard lesson with all this though!  It’s NOT ok to take a few weeks off!  Not for us anyhow.  Obviously it didn’t work. 

We had recently watched the documentary called “Fed Up” and it showed on Netflix.  If you get a chance, watch it!  It’s very interesting.  My son watched  it with us and he was very moved by it.  HE asked us to start buying healthy foods again, he was tired of his headaches every day. 

We have been doing well now for about a week and already his headaches have went down a lot!  It amazes me every day how much of an affect eating has on those things.  Now, if your eating “sort of healthy” and not ALL whole/clean foods…this will NOT work for you.  At least it didn’t for us.  You have to be consistent with healthy/clean foods every day for it to work it’s magic.  I am already feeling better and have a little more energy but I know by the time the month is up It will mean less knee pain and back pain for me!  I will continue to update on how it goes. 

For now, I will leave you with this photo of my shopping spree today.  90 bucks got me what is pictured.  A big bag of different dark greens in the bag in the back,  I did have a lot more apples and mushrooms but didn’t put all of them out there…just a few for the picture.  All Organic.  This is what our “normal” used to be..and now, what it is again!  Could not be happier about that!  SO excited for my back/knee pain to go away again! 

Shopping spree at our local health store

Shopping spree at our local health store

What happened last month?

I have been in MO for almost a  month and let me tell you, it was NOT a good month food wise (getting to see the grand babies was AWESOME).  BUT it was a GREAT experiment.  I’m glad I did it and I’m even more glad it’s done!  It was VERY hard to stay on our diet and we didn’t stay on it while we were there.  And let me tell you some of the things that happened, starting about a week and 1/2 after we stopped eating healthy.

First thing I noticed with me was my knee started hurting a little more again (I have arthritis in it).  Not a whole lot (prob because of the 40 some lbs I had already lost) but some.  Next I started noticing my stomach aching a little…just a dull ache at first.  Then  about the third week it started hurting more (mainly at bed time).  Headaches were HORRIBLE and often (about twice a week which is a LOT for me since I usually don’t get many at all).  And I just all around felt tired and yucky.  Didn’t feel like doing much at all. 

For Nic, his headaches were back DAILY.  I shouldn’t even call them headaches..they were mainly migraines for him…he needed to sleep and he needed it dark (just like he did before we started this change of lifestyle).  They started about week two we were there…dull at first but then later, week three, they were really strong where he would not want to move or even go on the computer at all.  And his stomach aches were back as well.  He also said he felt a little more “weak”  I think he means tired, but weak is the word he used.  This was all in just  three weeks.  After the end of week three he was begging me to get him healthy foods…that’s how bad his headaches were :( 

What does this tell me?   Well for one, I KNOW it was the change of food.  It was the ONLY thing we did differently.  We used our same bottled water to drink (although we did drink soda while there besides the water).  

We have been back to eating healthy foods again and already we have noticed a difference…Nic has not had a headache since we have been back, and we were not even eating 100% at first when we got home but we were eating mainly healthy again.  Today we are back on 100%.  I will update again after a weeks time to let you know the changes.  I have gained 10 lbs back while being in MO,  I can tell that is mainly water weight so not too worried.  I’m sure I can get that off in a week. 

We will NOT be doing that again!  If I have to stay away for a few weeks time again, I will be SURE to find someplace to buy ALL the food I need to stay on our  food plan (we did buy some but I didn’t have everything I was used to cooking with so it was hard, and had to improvise …have to plan better next time!.  I never want to feel that way again…EVER.  You really notice more going to the bad foods (after eating healthy for so long) then you do going to healthy from bad foods.  The change is much faster and you notice it right away.  Glad to be back home and doing well again! :D  Let the weight loss continue!! 

Weigh in and Blood Tests

Blood_1I weighed in again a few days ago and today I received the blood test results required for my work insurance (required for a lower rate anyhow.)  I’ve been waiting, somewhat impatiently, for these results.  I wanted to see what effect this diet has had on my health and not just total weight.  Now I have about three months of whole foods and another three of SANE whole foods behind me.

First, the raw numbers: 

Item May 2014 Nov 2014 Change Standard
Weight (lbs) 372.6 327.4 -45.2 183
Total Cholesterol 173 147 -26 <200
LDL 98 83 -15 <100
HDL 48 44 -4 >40
HDL Ratio 3.6 3.3 -0.3 <5.0
Triglycerides 134 101 -33 <150
Glucose 101 89 -12 <100
SGPT (ALT) 42 30 -12 <45

There were a bunch of other results, but they were all pretty much right in the middle of the recommended ranges and had changed little, if at all, in the past six months. I didn’t include them here.  

In May, I had two items which were high (weight and Glucose) and two which were flirting with the high limit (LDL Cholesterol and ALT.)  The new test results are all normal/safe except weight.  

Virtually all of the blood test results improved in the past six months.  The only lab result which was worse is HDL Cholesterol (higher is better in this case.)   It only dropped four points and is still in the desired range, but it really should have gone up.  Then again, I was still taking fish-oil capsules then.  (I’m not taking any vitamins now.)

High ALT indicates possible liver damage or stress.  I’m happy to see that one back away from the high water mark.

Overall, I’m VERY happy with the results of the past six months.  I looked at my older checkup history online.  Many of the results this time are the best they’ve been for as far back as I have records.  For some the results are the best in five years.  For several others the results are the best they’ve been in a full decade!

I’ll definitely be sticking with this diet.

Weigh in Number SIX, slacking just a little!

Well, my “No eating out” plan for the month of November has failed!  We ate subway three times, and even tho it was a veggie  sub, I consider that a fail since I had bread with it.  Even tho we haven’t been on 100% this month we have still both lost weight!  I lost two lbs and Cory has lost three.  We will take that!  We have not had the best month at all but it wasn’t all that bad either. I ate out three times in the month and I’m not sure how many Cory has eaten out.  I would still consider this a good month since I have seen a loss :D  Feeling really good about everything, and we will continue to move in the right direction!  One day at a time, being consistent! 

A November experiment.

I have decided that November will be the month that I will not eat out at all.  No fast food, no subway.  It’s going to be a ‘test’ month for me.  Nic says he will do it with me :D  In fact, he was kind of excited when I mentioned it.  He is NOT the boy I remember!  I am SO very proud of him for choosing to do this with me.  A few days back he actually choose to eat at home vs subway :D  He said he just felt like eating healthy that day.  Plus he knows that when he eats bad it brings back his migraines. 

He had one the other day (asked me to turn out the lights etc…that’s when I know one is coming on) and I asked him what he ate and he said he ate and ice cream bar at grandmas (I forgot he went there) and he said he only had one but that one ice cream bar was enough to bring back those headaches for him!  I find that so amazing really!   I think Nic is trusting us now when we tell him that MAY be causing his head aches.  Hopefully he will stay away from them when he’s visiting grandma next time :D 

I have not mentioned our November plan  to the hubby yet so maybe he will do this with us as well.  Either way, I’m doing it for me just to see what the end results hold.  We didn’t eat out that often so it’s not going to be a hard thing to do really.  I just think it may help push that extra lb I am looking for at the end of the month during weigh in :D 

We have blood work coming up here soon…I will be sure to share those results.  We both got them done when we started this journey so were curious to see how it turned out.  Cory will get his before I get mine so I’m sure he will share his news when he gets his results. 

Hope my readers are well!  Until next time…

Weigh in number FIVE.

This morning I didn’t expect much at weigh in.  I hadn’t been AS careful as I was the past four months but I was still keeping it within our “rules”.  Just eating a little more that’s all.  Well turned out that it may have helped me instead of harm me.  I lost FIVE lbs this time around :D  Very happy with that and look forward to next month weigh in!  Heck, if I can eat this way and still continue to lose, I will take that any day!   Short blog post today but wanted to update you all on how I did.  Very happy girl this morning.  And hubby has reached his 42 lb mark AND got rid of his allergies almost totally!  And my knees have not hurt in a while now and I can again walk normally!  In total the two of us have lost 87 lbs and feeling SOOO much better!  It’s a win/win for sure. 

apple tapemeasure

Whole Foods – 5 Months and 42 Pounds Later

We started a whole foods diet about May 20 this year.  Yesterday, I had a physical (required by my work in order to have lower insurance rates) so it seemed like a good time to check my weight again.  I’m down another 5-1/2 pounds this month and over 42 since we started in May.  When I get the blood-work results I’ll post something about the changes, if any, that they show from May 29.

Eating whole foods was fairly easy after we got the hang of it.  Then we started following a more “SANE” (S.A.N.E.) whole food diet (as described in the book The Calorie Myth.)  Eating a whole foods diet with a bent towards SANE foods has actually been even easier than what we were doing with just whole foods.  The hardest thing is still cooking almost every meal.

Even though we are still eating a few servings of grains or starchy vegetables (discouraged, but not banned by the book) it has still been very easy to stick to this diet.  Serving sizes are as big as we want them to be. I’m almost never hungry between meals.  And if you are hungry, you just eat some more SANE foods.

On top of all that, the food is tasty! (Adding back more fats sure helps.)  The biggest hurdle I’ve faced is when I’m hungry when driving.  Almost nothing you can get through a drive-through is SANE or whole foods.  But that’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make in exchange for the other benefits.

Diet Cures Seasonal Allergies?

This is the “feeling better” post I hinted at in my Sept 19 post. 

Growing up, I had sniffles and colds a lot around September.  At least I thought that was what it was then. Later on they became much more pronounced and eventually I realized that I suffer from fall allergies.

They really hit me hard too.  I had days that I would go through a full box of Kleenex in under a single eight hour work day. Even with pretty strong anti-allergy meds, (including trying some prescription) on high-pollen days I still had a runny nose and itchy eyes quite often.  

The meds made me drowsy, foggy and I definitely didn’t like it.  So I saved them for the bad days and suffered through the better ones.  All the while I waited for the first heavy frost to get rid of that dang pollen.

Enter my first whole foods allergy season.  

I waited to post this until the first heavy frost came and went.  I’d love to say that the allergies were all gone.  They weren’t.  BUT, this was my best allergy season in years!  

On good days, I forgot I have fall allergies at all.  On bad days, I might have a little dry and itchy eyes and need to blow my nose a few times.

I could certainly tell when I had been eating regular foods.  Eating lunch out a couple days in a row was enough to cause some mild allergy flair-ups, especially if I drank soda during lunch.

It only felt like the bad ‘ol allergy days complete with runny nose and chain-sneezing once.  I made the mistake of picking up some eye drops to treat a minor case of itchy eyes.  That worked… and within 30 minutes I was miserable, lasting into the next morning. (I didn’t make that mistake again.)

After a little research, I found plenty of sources siting hydration and healthy eating as the best defense for keeping allergy symptoms in check.  My experience this year certainly backs that up.

Many of the vegetables and even grass-fed meats we were eating contain compounds which reduce inflammation and histamine.  No wonder!

Best of all, eating right doesn’t have any nasty side-affects. Hopefully from now on I can stay medication free and mostly allergy free from late August through the first frost!

How I feel about slow weight loss.

When we started this lifestyle change, I often wondered when I would go back to my normal way of eating, when we started this lifestyle change I had NO clue I would be OK with slow weight loss, but I am now! 

scale1

Have you ever found yourself “planning” your lbs lost?  I have MANY times…in fact every time I started a “diet” I would count the calender weeks backwards to see how thin I would be by such and such a date.  Ya, NO MORE!  I feel relieved really.  I like the fact that I can grab whatever I want in my house and know it’s safe to eat.  From day one, we have NOT brought bad foods into this home.  Not even once!   I eat six to seven times a day and it feels good knowing I can do that and not be upset at myself.    It’s just really magical to me really…how well were doing.  Yes, we do go out to eat on occasion but the difference now?  We usually don’t order soda and we try to find healthier options.  We don’t go out often at all.  I’m thinking twice a month is pushing it when I say that’s how often we do eat out.

Our new food pyramid

Our new food pyramid

 

I am considering a whole month with NO eating out…just eating “house” foods.  Just out of curiosity to see if my weight loss does speed up a little.  Not because I WANT it to speed up but because I’m just curious.  I will let you of the results if I try this.  I may just do it this next month  because I leave for MO for three weeks in Dec so not a good time to try that out.   Or maybe it IS!  We will see how things work out. 

A hard habit I had to overcome was jumping on the scale every day, or even every week.  I weigh in at the doctors once a month and It takes a LOT of pressure off of me doing it that way.  The ONLY time I do get on that scale is if I’m feeling “heavy” and I KNOW when that is.  That way I can make sure I’m not going UP and if I did go up a lb or two then I know,  that was a little TOO much eating this past week etc.  And I back off on it and step back a little.   I am especially careful a week before weigh in…which is THIS week.  Weigh in is this Friday, Oct 31st.  And as long as that scale moves down (even if it’s only a lb) I am finally ok with that!