No Limits on Non-starchy Vegetables

One piece advice is to not limit yourself in consuming this list of non-starchy vegetables. Indeed, aiming for 6-10 cups a day can help optimize your health. Low carb/starchy vegetables are nutrient power houses.

(This list may not be complete)

Reference – wikipedia

What’s Your Goal

What’s your New Year’s Resolution? Don’t have one? No worries; I am not sure I like them anyway. Surely they are motivating (initially), but seeking a better self shouldn’t be captivated only one time a year. Nonetheless, let’s get healthier before we get caught up in what others are doing since January 1.

My first question is – what do you want to be different from this winter to the next? More energy, a different dress size, a faster paced mile, more reps on your weight lifting routine? What in your health could be better?

Whatever your goal is, write it down. One effective place to write your goal is getting a dry erase marker and writing the goal on your bathroom mirror.

Next think why it’s important. This WHY is so crucial. It’s going to be your ongoing motivation.

Now go back and look at what your goal is and assess whether it’s intimidating to initiate or easy enough to start NOW. If you can’t do something for your goal today, break that goal down to something smaller, with a lesser barrier of entry to begin.

Next, draft a plan to reach this small milestone within the week, and in the next week, reassess your goal and set your standards higher to inch closer to the main objective.

Overall, it’s hard to know where we are headed if we don’t know what we are truly trying to go after.

If you need any help, feel free to email me at [email protected],com. As well, I have also added another service which includes assessing a 3-5 day food log, where I provide insight and tactics of what someone needs to do reach a set goal. Sometimes accountability is all you need! Let me be your coach this month. I promise to play nice.

Cheers to you and good health,

Kelly

‘Hands Down’ the Paleo Diet is the Best Solution for this Case of Diabetes

Thanks to social media I was able to connect with yet another fellow health advocate, using the paleo diet to control his type one diabetes. The below interview was held with the writer of Intrepid Pioneer, a site about modern homesteading principals.

Perhaps, you as the reader, can connect with this interview and maybe find yourself inspired to optimize your diet. Feedback is welcomed.

Cheers to you and good health,

Kelly

How long have you had diabetes?

I was diagnosed May 2011 during my routine annual physical. At that time my blood sugars were up around 360 and my AC1’s ran around 12.3. At first I was treated as if I was a Type 2 with Metformin. The medicine only helped to control my blood sugars down to around 250 or so. At that time my endocrinologist informed me that I probably have LADA or Latent Autoimmune Diabetes, which basically has been coined type 1.5 Meaning I developed adult on-set Type 1. My father has had Type 1 all his life and was diagnosed as a child.

What eating regime have you found to be most helpful in managing stable blood sugars and how did you come to find this diet?

Paleo, hands down, without a question. It took me some time to get there. I had tried Weight Watchers, and measure portions, etc. but I still just felt that each time I checked my glucose it was a crap shoot. I eventually did the Advocare 10 day cleanse and my blood sugars stabilized. Next I started researching Paleo and ultimately I ended up taking on the Whole 30 challenge. That was it and I’ve been keeping a food/exercise journal since Jan. 2013 and am now able to completely understand how my body metabolism it’s sugars. Sometimes my glucose is a surprise to me and when that happens I can look back through my food journal to see just what I ate or did for that number (good or bad).

What main improvements in your health have you observed, diabetic-related or not? 

I’ve lost about 15bls and I am exercising on a more regular basis and enjoying it. Whereas I used to say the only time I ran was when I was being chased and now I’ve let a buddy talk me into running a Rock and Roll half-marathon in 2014. Plus, I’ve started doing Crossfit and I love strength training, lifting weights and the intensity that Crossfit brings as well as the community of likeminded no-bullshit real people.

Do you find the diet realistic and something to maintain long term? Would you recommend it to others managing their diabetes? 

Yes, not only do I feel better, and have tighter control over my diabetes, I absolutely recommend it to anyone. Here’s the deal too that I like about Paleo – it can be as strict as they want or modify it to fit their lifestyle. For example, I am a home brewer and I love beer AND I love cheese. Those two delicious pieces of goodness I will never give up, so instead I gave up hot, fresh, warm bread and pasta. It’s all about choices.

What does a typical day of food look like to you? 

Easy. Take today for example:

6:30a – BG 82mg/dl
20oz black coffee and 1 banana (it was a rough morning, sometimes I eat eggs or I’ll make a protein shake)

8:30a – 103 mg/dl
another 20oz Black coffee

9:35a
1 apple and 1/3c raw almonds

11:15 – BG post snack 125 mg/dl

12p
1 salad (bib lettuce from my garden), with radishes, scallions, cucumbers and 1/3c raw sunflower seeds, a little goat cheese and rice vinegar dressing. 1 large avocado and a 12oz can of seltzer water.

1:15 BG post lunch – 97 mg/dl

2:45p
1 string cheese and an organic raspberry yogurt.

7:50p 237 Pre dinner (went out to a pub for Guinness and ate happy hour bar food)

9:45p 155 post dinner (took 8u fast acting w/dinner since I was so high from the bar food)

Here’s another example:

6:05a 138 fasting

6:30a 2 eggs over medium + 1 banana

8:45a 160 post breakfast

9a 20 oz black coffee

10 a 1/3c raw almonds and an Asian pear/apple

11:15a Turkey burger with mustard 2 slices whole wheat and cheddar) not paleo I know 🙂 Wanted the carbs for my workout.

11:30 2 servings of my C4 pre-workout drink

12 Crossfit during lunch

1p 2 servings whey protein shake post w/o

3p 127 post shake

7:15p Paleo Chicken in Mushroom coconut sauce over quinoe and garnished w/scallions + 1 glass red wine

9:05p 106 post dinner

Pick any day of the week and or specific day (this year) and I can tell you what I ate and when. I realize today might be the best example of a day.

What is the best thing about the diet? 

If I fall of the wagon for some reason and eat some chips or red vines (my kryptonite) I don’t feel guilty, like I did in the past when I tried Weight Watchers. I still mark it down in my journal, take it as head nod and move forward. You can make what you want of eating Paleo, be strict, or give yourself a cheat day. I love eating real food, that’s not prepackaged crap, I feel healthier and have more energy each day.

Any tips for someone getting started on this type of diet? 

Plan. For me that is the most essential thing. I found that when I didn’t plan, I fell off the wagon and I only had me to blame. It’s easy to do, but to stay focused you just have to plan. When you know what your meals are for the week, you can get home from work and then get at it in the kitchen. No excuses.

Anything in addition you’d like to say? 

Since eating the Paleo lifestyle, and I hate it when one calls it a diet because then it feels temporary, I’ve pretty much stop taking my fast acting mealtime insulin. Meaning I only inject fast acting when I know I’m having Pizza for dinner as a treat, or for a thanksgiving meal, etc. My long acting insulin has reduced by over 10 units since starting this diet. All of that said, Paleo is great and it all tastes so good because it’s real food, but I have found that I also need to exercise, eating Paleo combined with exercise has yielded dynamic results. My endocrinologist was blown away by all that I had done, reduced my insulin injections and basically had my A1C’s in check — my last appointment I was 7.3. Still a bit more to go but the last time I was pushing 9 just six months before.

Lastly, some may say that eating Paleo is expensive, I would then ask, which is more expensive paying for real, quality food, or paying a doctor/insurance company for advice and then paying for an prescription? It’s all just choices.

 

Five Ways to Enhance Your Health this Season

I will admit, I still have my coat hanging next to my front door here in Chicago, even though it’s “Spring.” The rainy weather and gray sky is not holding me back on my plans for stepping into health this month, summer and beyond. Here is my game plan and suggestions for others looking to do the same.

5 Ways to Step-up Your Health this Spring and Summer:

  • Never overeat, nor undereat. I guess it doesn’t matter what season it is to follow this “rule,” but with warm weather, can come more BBQs, happy hours, social events, etc, and the last thing I would want any client to do is skip or skimp on their morning meal to “save” calories for the evening. Undereating can be just as stressful on the body as overeating. So what do you do? Eat smarter. Presume (or start) having a solid breakfast with at least 20-40 grams of protein (gender depending) and if you have a big night ahead, perhaps cut back on the carbohydrates you typically eat, but do not under do it. Leading to the afternoon’s or evening’s event, make smart choices, stay hydrated and eat clean. Once the party starts enjoy the company and the food, but not too much of either. Alcohol can inhibit our best interest and your hard work doesn’t need sabotaged by an extra drink.
  • Broaden your food choices. Come spring and summer, more lovely produce reaches their peak season. What does this mean? Easier (and cheaper) to locate, and the crops actually taste better. For example, it’s so easy to locate organic strawberries right now. Slice some up and threw them into scrambled eggs with coconut oil, dress them into a salad, eat them plain or with some almond milk or coconut cream. Hello tastebuds! I have also done up Brussel sprouts in a variety of ways from savory, with roasted onion and garlic, to sweet, baked with sliced dates. Get creative, keep your mouth entertained with the flavors this season has to offer.
  • Use food reward and palatability the right way to improve body fat. What do I mean? If a food is very palatable, people will eat 44% more of that food. And what I mean by “very palatable,” I am talking about industrialized (food with either added sugar, salt, color and/or added fat to enhance the flavor thus chemical response to our brain. If we eat whole food, in it’s natural form, we are less likely to over-consume. So know your triggers – perhaps something that is fat laden with sugar or starch (ice cream, fries, doughnuts, etc) or salty (think about the difference when eating raw almonds vs roasted, salted almonds, which will you eat more of?) and visual cues (we are more likely to eat more of a food if it’s multi-colored (tortilla chips) than if they were all the same color). The variety distracts your mind to understand how much you have eaten.
  • Nurture your sleep routine, and if you don’t have one, create one. When we are tired, we are less capable to sticking to our health choices. We often opt towards the sweeter, higher calorie foods. Overall, we as a nation, are getting 20% less sleep than we need. Less sleep = cognitive impairment. Less sleep shows about 300 more calories a day. We tend to be more impulsive on less sleep. Inhibitory control is lost. Sleep has the strongest correlation to obesity compared to diet and fitness. To enhance your sleep, allow an hour to 45 minutes before getting in bed to wind down (put the computer away). Have your bedroom at a cool temperature and create a pitch black room. Buy chamomile oils or lavender oils to help you relax and lastly when laying in bed, tell yourself all the things you are thinking, can be thought about tomorrow. 

BONUS!

  • Don’t compare yourself to others – our body’s, including metabolism and gene expressions all work in different ways. That is why some people can eat loads of bread and gain nothing, when the next person smells the stuff and puts on 5 pounds. Not literally, but I think you can level with me.
  •  Don’t major in minor things. Sometimes eating “perfectly” can do us more harm than good. The stress of adding a drop of cream in an organic coffee or a GMO corn kernel in a stir-fry is not worth the stress (depending on what type of lifestyle/diet you are trying to follow). Surely it is if you have intense negative symptoms from these foods (allergy) but don’t get your panties in a bundle over every bite you take. Focus on the main elements of eating clean and be satisfied if/when you have a superb eating day.

Sunday Session: Cocoanut Oil Treats, Sweet Butternut Squash + Usual Food Staples

It’s Super Bowl Sunday and looking at my week ahead, I have a lot of dinner dates and lunch meetings, and therefore I do not want to prep too much food today. Nonetheless, I have made some of my staple Sunday items including:

  • Froze 3 bananas – these are great to have plain (almost taste like ice cream) and I thaw them and use them in my banana pancakes if my fresh ones are used up (pancakes are literally just 1 banana and 2 eggs, mashed into a pancake-like batter, make with some coconut oil)
  • Chopped some raw celery and carrots – good for easy snacking and grabbing when time is short
  • Pulled some of my frozen sausage stew out of the freezer for dinner this week as well as some green curry soup
  • Paleo Infused Nutrition Breakfast muffins

Cocoanut Oil Treat:

I have fallen in love with these Organic Raw Cocoa Bliss treats and am inspired to make my own version. This is what I concocted.

  • 1 cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/3 cup Cocoa Powder (raw cocoa powder is preferred)
  • 2 Tbsp Organic Raw Honey (or Stevia, Molasses, maple Syrup)
  • 1 Tbsp of vanilla extract (gluten free)

Method: Melt the coconut oil and add the honey. Whisk and add the cocoa powder. Whisk occasionally while pouring into a silicone ice cube tray or silicone mini muffin tray. Makes 12-14. Cool for 30 minutes in the fridge or freezer.

Butternut Squash:

I was between how to make my squash. Was I going to be in the mood for sweet or savory? I didn’t know, so I went into this recipe making with simplicity. I just baked it so it would be easy to reheat and just used some butter and salt/pepper. Therefore the true flavor of the butternut squash would come through and I can tweak it for the week ahead with additional spices if desired

  • Pre-cut cubed squash (Trader Joe’s)
  • 1-2 T, melted, grassfed butter
  • Salt/pepper to taste

Method: Preheat oven to 400 degree F. Melt the butter in a large microwave safe bowl. Toss squash with butter, salt and pepper. Line a cookie sheet with foil. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, flip the squash then bake for another 20-25 minutes until the squash is tender and caramelized.

Becoming a Certified LEAP Therapist

What is a Lifestyle Eating And Performance (LEAP) certification? The LEAP Disease Management Program is intended to re-mediate the symptoms of patients suffering from IBS, migraines, fibromyalgia, other food sensitivities and more. Overall, this program gives health care providers a patient-specific approach that provides the following:

  1. A means of selecting a population of patients that can be expected to benefit
  2. Lab based MRT testing for food and chemical hypersensitivity reactions
  3. A diet which is patient specific and easily implement
  4. A patient stress reduction tool (IBS)
  5. Procedures for assessing outcomes

This certification helps to further explain what food is doing to a patient’s digestion and overall health, thus making food an even bigger tool in improving the quality of life in clients.

The test is based on an innovative method of measurement of blood components previously not possible, accurately isolates which specific foods and/or additives provoke any form of non-allergic hypersensitivity reactions by any class of circulating immunocytes. These previously undetected non-IgE (food sensitivities) reactions release proinflammatory and proaglesic mediators in specific organ systems and systemically through the circulation. . This blood test and paired eating plan optimizes a patient’s diet over a period of 30 days (elimination diets can take months), removing all possible dietary provocation quickly, without guesswork. In the end, I will be able to strategically address a primary mechanism of symptom generation in a wide range of disease states. the LEAP Mediator Release Test (MRT) tests for 130 food and 20 chemical and additives.

Conditions in which food sensitivities may play a role include but are not limited to:

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Celiac Disease
  • Migraine
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • ADD/ADHD
  • Eczema

If you feel like you have hit a dead-end and can not resolve why certain symptoms are permitting, even on a healthy real food diet, perhaps this test is something to consider.

If you are interested in MRT Food Sensitivity Testing, but not ready to make the commitment and want to learn more then schedule a 30 minute assessment with me. During this 30 minute session we will assess and review your medical history and symptom survey to determine if you are the right candidate and can benefit from the MRT test.

Nonetheless, this is one more tool, strengthening my recommendations for you to be in your best health.

Nutrient Dense: Slow-Cooker Chicken Vegetable Soup

This soup, by far, has been  the best chicken soup I have ever HAD and made. Pure deliciousness.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 T of coconut oil, or grassfed butter
  • 1 chicken breast, free range, skin and bones
  • 2 drum sticks, free range, skin on, bones in
  • 4 cups, gluten free chicken broth, enough to cover the soup ingredients
  • 1/2 tsp garlic, minced, add more if your prefer
  • 1/2 yellow onion, add more if you want the soup to be sweeter
  • 7 carrots stalks, chopped
  • 1 celery heart, ~10 stalks,  chopped
  • 2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 T rosemary
  • 3 bay leaves
  • Splash of lemon juice
  • sea salt
  • pepper

Directions:

  • Turn slow-cooker on to high. Add coconut oil or butter.
  • Add in the garlic and onion and let it heat up and the flavors marry before adding the chicken (5-8 minutes). Place in the chicken.
  • Begin chopping and prepping all other ingredients. Add all ingredients, including broth and spcies.
  • Change temperature to Low, and cook for 8-10 hours. Remove chicken and once cool enough to touch, remove the bones and shred the meat. Place the meat back into soup mix.
  • Stir and then enjoy.

What may be different with this soup than ones you may find on Recipe.com or other quick-and-easy recipe sites? I have included chicken that is organic, free range, in the bone, skin on. Why? The nutrient density goes up substantially with these components.

What To Watch? How About a Documentary?

When is the last time you watched a documentary? How about one based on health?

Nutrition or food related documentaries are one of my favorite things to have streaming in the background while doing some work and to unwind to on a lazy Sunday or school-night evening. They are very educational, while being biased. Yet, each documentary I watch, food related or not, I build a new perspective or broaden my perspective on certain topic.

I have enclosed some of my favorite documentaries below for you to consider. If there is not one on here that you recommend, please comment. I am keen to learn what you like as well.

Documentaries: 

Cheers to you and good health,

Kel

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2012-10-07

  • @RockYourD no worries. Re: broken link – talking about a blog post I published today? It published premature, and I moved it back to draft. #
  • So excited to be back in Chicago w the market on my back door step! @GreenCityMarket #
  • Does milk do a body good? http://t.co/dRzJ9JFX #
  • I am a nutrient seeker. What does that mean? Everything I choose to eat is based on the vitamins, minerals, and… http://t.co/BMA4cKHz #
  • Does anyone want to join me for the JDRF Walk here in Chicago (Lakefront) Oct 14th?… http://t.co/6fMjpKj9 #
  • Happy Halloween – Chicago http://t.co/7qGaehEJ #
  • To the primal/paleo folks out there – if you eat any grains, which ones are they? Black rice, quinoa, etc. How often do you eat them? #
  • @RockYourD I agree. I do well w j-rice when I am very active. However, I can never eat more than ~45g CHO w/o sub-optimal BGs to follow. #T1 #
  • When we are fueled the right way, with the right foods, we are our best person. Good on the USDA putting in the… http://t.co/3rEO2hLi #
  • Curious as to how many other people could have put their T1 DM in remission with a Gluten free diet…. http://t.co/n6xkBEXo #
  • Clearing the air on some diabetes information. http://t.co/wTPk5trF #
  • Like. http://t.co/DjKPQ6Mj #
  • I posted 3 photos on Facebook in the album "Meal Ideas" http://t.co/hcM1rYhD #