Friday, March 29, 2013

Wow, no sugar or carbs, Oh My!

Almost 3 months with no sugar, grains, or PASTA! Eeeekkk. But I feel awesome,  and that's what counts.

I keep forgetting to take photos of everything I make or eat. But I remembered last night! Wow, was this ever a great dinner. Double stuffed burgers ( ground turkey stuffed with portabella mushrooms, sundried tomatoes and red onions), broccoli and red onion frittata and baked "candy" acorn squash. A protein pile up! I was full for hours, and some was left over for breakfast the next morning.

I also put together energy bars; basically several different types of nuts & seeds, dates, raisins, and a little coconut oil mixed with honey and cinnamon. Awesomely delish; my hubby thought they were "dessert". (I'm not tellin')

So made the consult with a surgeon; let's see what he has to say.

Easter Sunday is in 2 days. I have planned a Paleo meal, having omitted the usual recipes I've made for years. Still keeping the leg of lamb, but adding a prime rib (grass fed of course), with kale & sundried tomato saute, and spicy roasted butternut squash & cauliflower. I've even gotten a recipe for Almond Joy bars; my son (who eats Paleo but has a VERY sweet tooth like his Dad). Can't wait to see how these turn out. Of course, my Mom will be bringing her Italian Wheat pie. Easter wouldn't be Easter without it, and even though it's not Paleo (gasp!) I think I'll try a very SMALL piece.

Everyone have a wonderful holiday, and savor your food and enjoy your family & Friends.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Twelve pounds down as of today; it's been officially two months and two weeks on the Paleo Diet. Feeling really good and actually not craving sugars or carbs. And it has become easier to fit into my lifestyle, even when eating out. I really don't feel deprived. When I do want something "special", I'll make a Paleo carrot cake or muffins, or throw together some Paleo energy bars (basically nuts, dates, raisins, and almond butter). The Crohns flare-up seems to have dissipated, however, I still have this nagging cramp in my side, which probably has to do with the fact that I have some narrowing of the intestine at the re-section site of my first surgery 34 years ago. Made an appointment with a surgeon for a consult. AT some point, I am going to require this surgery, so I might as well get it over with earlier rather than later. I'm not getting any younger!

Totally off subject, and to be honest, how much can I really write about Crohns and the Paleo lifestyle? Enough so I can be of benefit to you primals out there, but I think I might just like to express myself in other areas!

Last night, while both my daughter and I were in the kitchen making separate! dinners, generally getting in each other's way, she turned her IPhone to The Beatles Anthology, and both of us were singing and generally grooving. Little did I know that when I was 12 and listening to The Beatles in my bedroom on my old box turntable (you know the one, heavy duty foil wrapped cardboard, you could listen to 45's and 33's and then snap in shut and carry it to a friend's house or plug it in around your house) that some __ odd years later (I'm NOT giving the number) I'd be in my kitchen with my twenty something daughter listening to the very same tunes, and still digging it. Really, The Beatles were beginning of rock/pop as we know it, and still remain relevant today. So all in all, making dinner last night turned out to be really fun, and my daughter and I got to share.

On another note, why can't people be polite these days? Is it so much to expect that when you hold a door for someone they say "thank you"? Or that they hold it for you at all? Why do people have to be so miserable all the time? My day is made so much better when the little things come into play, such as going into a store you've only been in almost 3 - 4 times a week and having everyone know your name and say hello, or going to your bank and having EVERYONE know who you are and actually ASK if you need any help? I'm not talking about the cashier that's REQUIRED to say, "Hi, how are you today?" or "have a nice day".  I'm talking about a genuine smile, a word here or there of grace, a casual conversation about general things while waiting for your car to be washed?
I can't tell you how many times I've been in a store where the people behind the counter are so unfriendly and miserable, where they ask you for your order, as though you'd never visited there and it's been the same since God knows when?

So my message is, well, be NICE to one another! Life is too short to be grumpy all the time!

Friday, March 15, 2013

food Diary

OK People! I know it's been awhile, but I have been crazy busy!

Anyhoo, it's Friday, a dingy depressing Friday, even though it IS Friday, and I am just about finished with all of my work. Today was not a good day for food. Feeling nauseous, so only had a mint split pea soup, really good, but different. Don't really feel much like eating anything else yet.

 SO this is my typical breakfast. Usually leftover meat from the night before dinner, and a big bowl of fruit.

Going Paleo has been a challenge, cooking wise. But I have discovered so many websites and blogs dedicated to the primal lifestyle with awesome recipes, that it is getting easier everyday. Of course, being an EYEtalian girl, I do REALLY, I mean REALLY, miss my pasta, but I have learned to substitute with spaghetti squash, which fools you into believing that you are eating pasta!

 Here is a side dish that I just threw together. I sauteed some leftover broccoli rabe in coconut oil, added some crushed garlic and sundried tomatoes (NOT the kind from the jar full of oil) and viola! Quick yummy side dish
 For lunch the next day I ate the same side dish, along with (Gasp!) turkey meatballs. But these meatballs are made with no cheese or breadcrumbs, just some almond meal, eggs, garlic, a dash of my home made tomato sauce and parsley salt & pepper to taste.

 AND....I do miss something sweet now and then, and my family has such a sweet tooth, so I am always looking for Paleo treat recipes. FOund this one on my favorite website,  which is chock full of recipes. These are Pumpkin Cupcakes. Next time I make them I will add a bit more fruit like dates or raisins to up the sweetness. They were a little bland. And my hubby made such a face when he took a bite! I try not to tell him they are "Paleo" because then he might not try it. I want to get his tastebuds acclimated

 One of my all time favorite things to make and eat is Italian Wedding Soup, so I re-tooled the recipe and eliminated the pasta (I know, I know, what's Italian anything without pasta!) but adding scrambled eggs and some spaghetti squash really amped it up.

 This was a breakfast that I just threw together because I was late getting into the office, so I just used whatever was leftover in the fridge; some turkey bacon (with no nitrates) brussel sprouts, asparagus and eggs, with a side of fruit of course.

 NOW THIS< THIS was awesome! This was pulled pork, probably the best I ever had or ever made, and all Paleo!

 Along with the pulled pork I made "rice" from cauliflower chopped up in the food processor and then sauteed with garlic, paprika, a little water and salt & pepper to taste.

 On this one I took some of that left over pork and made an egg scramble with some broccoli rabe, for breakfast. Can't seem to get used to the idea though that I can have MEAT with breakfast!

 Different recipe for pulled pork, called Pork Carnitas, not as good though.

So that's some of the last few weeks worth of Paleo meals. Check out these websites and blogs if you want to see what all the Primal fuss is about.

There are also some really great apps like "PaleoDiet" by FitKit and "Healthy Out" for healthy dishes at the big chain restaurants.

I will TRY to write more often. See ya

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Remicade day

Thursday, 2/7/13

Last night I made whole wheat pasta for my husband, with home made tomato sauce. For myself it was spaghetti squash (and I have to say, real spaghetti is about the only thing I miss, but after a while you just get used to eating alternates) along with chicken meatballs, chicken nitrate free sausage and hardboiled egg (I know I know, what? But it's an italian thing that my family has included in our sauce for generations).

And now, for breakfast. A big bowl of mixed fresh fruit, sprinkled with cinnamon, and 1 left over chicken meatball, sausage and egg from last night.

Boy, am I full!

Later today I have my scheduled Remicade treatment; can't wait to tell Dr. A that this diet WORKS! and that I am feeling MUCH better. Kinda smug about telling him that now I really don't have to consider alternate meds. So long as this diet continues to work for me, I will march on.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

OK, so I am starting this Blog because I just have to share my enthusiasm and belief in The Paleo way of life.
Giving a (hopefully!) short version of how and why I came to be where I am now, and sharing recipes, ideas and progress. At the same time, I hope to help others like me; people with Crohn's and IBS.

I have had Crohn's all of my life, diagnosed with the disease when I was 15 years old, after a rather horrible bout of strep throat. It took doctors 9 months to figure out what I had, and by then I had almost died twice, been hospitalized at least 3 times, and lost 30 lbs; and let me tell you, on a 5'10 frame that at the time only carried 135lbs on it, I was skeletal!

After 5 years on different medications I required surgery to remove a good part of my large a small part of my lower bowels. After that I was "in remission" for some 34 years, until the disease started to reassert itself, as I had been warned it could do sometime in my life. 

Jump to three years ago, new gastroenterologist, and a new lease on life as I knew it. Of course, this was before I realized that at some point I just wanted to STOP taking meds all the time. I was started on an every 8 week regimen of Remicade, which I can tell you, changed my life!

But now, after a particularly stressful year (think elderly ill parent, the economy and life in general) I started feeling horrible again. AND that's where Paleo came into the picture. My son and future daughter-in-law started the diet (because they are health nuts!) and convinced me that I should try it already!

So, 4 weeks down the road, and it started to really kick in. All of my symptoms vanished, I felt stronger, healthier and CLEAN! But, you know, I just couldn't really believe it. And then we had our annual Super Bowl Sunday party, where our usual fare is home made pizzas, chili, pasta, and desserts. 
I tried to take it easy, only had a few things, but WOW! The next day I felt horrible again. After not having grains, beans, and any sugar for 4 weeks, did my body rebel. 

So now I know...the Paleo way works. I hope to post here ideas, recipes, notes etc. and share with you all my progress, so you may be inspired to do the same. And hey, even if you don't have a disease, you could do yourself a favor by making your life and body more healthy!

Starting tomorrow, I will post my food diary, with pics and such...enjoy!