My friend and fellow blogger, Tamara, asked me a question about diet, cooking, and what not, which has really had me thinking ever since. You can see my first response to her question in my post, How I Started ME Weight Loss Journey.
I guess I don’t give it a lot of thought because how I eat and cook has become an innate part of my personal journey of living with Fibromyalgia (FMS) and Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) since December of 1992. At least it has for me.
After my complete collapse as the result of mold and being exposed to a toxic chemical last year and fighting like hell to get my health back, I am more convinced than every that what I put into my body and how I pace and live my life are absolutely critical to my well-being and regaining my health – whatever that may look like.
In addition, my recent diagnosis of Celiac Disease has once again returned my attention to what I am putting in my body as it is an auto-immune illness and can have horrible and life threatening implications.
To be brutally honest, part of my weight gain wasn’t just the result of medication but the lack of energy and grabbing whatever was easy or just ordering in or running through a fast food restaurant because I was so exhausted, thus, cooking was impossible.
However, in the long run, that route wreaked havoc on my body not just in weight terms, but in toxins, emotional stress – because I was uncomfortable in my body – and physical pain from all the extra weight.
In addition, I was not getting quality food into my body, so my body was working twice as hard, which in a compromised body, is not good – especially when one is barely registering any discernible energy!
So … I decided to change how I cook for several reasons.
First, standing for long periods is hellacious for me. Standing has actually become my least favorite position!
Second, lifting heavy pots – especially laden with food – was really challenging on a moderate to bad day.
Third, I was repeatedly forgetting to turn the stove off when I was done cooking, or leaving food cooking on the stove, forgetting it was there, and burning everything!
Last, it was my inability on bad days to actually complete the process of ‘thinking’ that is required to cook. Following instructions on a bad day was just impossible – even with a dish that was simple.
Furthermore, there were (and still are) many days that I just couldn’t even cook anything (hard-boiled egg included) if my life depended on it.
I decided to switch to what I call ‘one-dish’ meals. I bought a crock pot, a soup pan, a rice cooker/steam, an egg boiler and a George Foreman grill. The Foreman grill is the one with the multiple plates not the single burger one.
I then started cooking for my crashes, if you will. I would make a double batch of let’s say, Potato Leek Soup, and portion it out and freeze most of it so on bad days I would just pull it out and not have to worry about cooking.
I bought the egg boiler because on really bad days (thank God they are rarer now) I am only able to eat eggs for protein so this way I always have hard-boiled eggs in the fridge. At worst, I pop 6 eggs into the basket, turn it on and in under five minutes have 6 hard-boiled eggs. All with very little effort.
I also bought a crock pot and started cooking one-meal dishes in it. In addition, I will often buy a pound or two of farm/organic chicken and cook it all at once in the crock pot. It is super simple. Slice up an onion or two and lay them in the bottom of the pot, then layer your chicken breasts on top of that, add some organic vegetable broth or chicken broth and set the timer and walla – chicken for salad, dinner, snacks, whatever!
With the George Foreman grill I can quickly cook up any of my meats but it also makes amazing omelettes. In addition, if you can do gluten, the pazzini press makes awesome grilled cheese, grilled ham and cheese, and all other sorts of sandwiches.
The other thing I did was slowly increase my raw food intake. For me that means I upped my eating of salads from 1 to 2 to 3 a day. I find the more raw I eat, the better I feel and it is much simpler (for me at least) to pull together a raw meal like a salad with tuna on it and lots of veggies then it is to pull together a cooked meal.
From there, I moved to drinking one of my meals a day in order to insure that I am getting all the superfoods my body needs, as well as the nutrients, probiotics, and digestive enzymes my body needs every day.
Amazing Grass has literally saved my life.
Today, my diet looks like this.
7:00 – An Amazing Grass Superfood drink with 1/2 a banana, 1 cup of Organic Kefir and 1/4 cup Organic Almond Milk or juice.
10:00 – An Amazing Grass Energy Bar or 1/4 of an apple with 1-2 tsps of Organic Peanut Butter.
12:00 – A huge salad with a variety of lettuces, veggies and a protein (raw cheese/beans/chicken/or tuna)
2:00 – Another Amazing Grass Superfood Drink like the one at 7:00 (but with an alkaline balancing powder this time.)
5:00 – A piece of Organic dark chocolate and a piece of fruit or protein (cheese/chicken).
7:00 Amazing Grass Meal Replacement Super Chocolate Infusion Drink.
While this may be a little extreme for some, I get quality, raw, organic superfoods all throughout the day. My body slumps when I don’t get all of this in.
And because a lot of it is in liquid form, (shakes) my body spends less energy breaking it down and assimilating it. That frees me up to eat a snack or two and a meal (or two) which also takes less energy.
I’m also finding the longer I take the Amazing Grass products, the more energy I seem to get and the better I feel.
I totally understand that each of us need to figure out what to do to get to the best place we can be with our illnesses, whatever they may be. While this is how I now do it, this may not work for you, or only one or two things will work for you.
My purpose isn’t to tell you how to do the eating thing but perhaps just give you and idea or two that will help you to start finding ways to make your diet work for you and for your body.
In the end, that really is all we can do.
Determined to continue forward,