I Wasn’t A Good Girl
This post was supposed to be on Principle of Health #3, but I wanted to share an experience with you. Perhaps my folly can help someone else.
This all began last Thursday [6/13/13] when I cooked dinner for the weekend. I didn’t have much time, so I needed something fast, easy, and delicious. On the menu was brown rice , organic sweet corn kernels, organic leaf spinach,* and a vegetarian dinner roast [a local health food store carries numerous non-meat, meat-like products]. *I don’t buy all organic. It’s costly. But I will usually splurge on organic vegetables and blueberries.
This dinner roast is delicious especially when I add onion powder, garlic powder, and thyme, then bake it. It’s made from wheat gluten, wheat flour, artificial flavors, MSG, and a lot more stuff. My husband likes it, and sadly, so do I. But I am gluten and wheat sensitive – they make me weak, and MSG [a flavor enhancer] gives me horrible leg spasms. I should never touch that roast. But I did. I ate a slice Friday evening. Saturday morning my legs were so weak. But dumb got dumber when I had two slices on Saturday. The muscles got weaker. Then dumber got dumbest (?) when I ate two slices on Sunday. Company was over and they ate a lot of it too.
Not only was this roast devastating my nerves and muscles, but so was the gravy – cream of mushroom soup [contains enriched wheat flour and more MSG]. I had added onion powder, garlic powder, and some cayenne pepper [for a kick]; blended it and poured it over the roast slices. It was good! But I was barely able to take steps, and my right knee was painful and collapsing. I was relying on my faithful scooter to get around. I also had horrible spasms in my neck and behind my ears. They felt like hot piercing knives. These spasms usually let me know my body is full of inflammation or in relapse. I was a mess and knew help was needed. I planned to call my neurologist and see if he would call in to my pharmacy a short – term dose of Prednisone [steroid]. That would usually perk me up.
But before calling the doctor I wanted to see if juicing would help things. I juiced pineapple and strawberries in the morning and carrots and celery in the evening. My skin looked great, I had more energy, and the leg spasms were a lot less. But I was still barely able to take steps, and Tuesday night I fell three times.
On Wednesday morning my sister in-law had heard about me falling and wanted to know if she could do anything to help. I told her my plan to ask the doctor for steroids. I didn’t like their bad side effects,* but wanted quick relief from my symptoms. Then, wise woman that she is, she asked, “Is there anything else you can take to help?” I thought for a moment and told her, “Flaxseed oil – it goes into the body faster than the ground seeds, and helps reduce inflammation.” Because of her question, I asked my husband to bring home a bottle of Spectrum Organic Flaxseed Oil Enriched with Ligans. *Some of my good side effects from Prednisone: wonderful strength and energy, great complexion, and clear thinking; and the bad ones – increased blood sugar, sweating, swelling, and being crabby at the end.
I took some oil Wednesday evening and had more energy, clearer thinking, and the neck spasms stopped. I took more on Thursday and continued to feel better. And today I can take steps without my right leg hurting or collapsing. I’m going to keep taking this oil.
What’s the point of me sharing this?
1. Know your body and study what makes it feel better or worse. Then avoid the hurtful things. Keep a food diary.
2. What helps or hurts the body, helps or hurts the brain. We need sharp brains.
3. Avoid processed foods whose list of ingredients are several inches long. Use more foods close to how nature made them.
4. Feeling, moving, and thinking poorly are not good or fun. Don’t be dumb like I was – chasing after something that tastes good, but beat the mess out of my body and brain. Take care of the only body you or I will ever have.
Take good care. See you next time.
In the mid 1990s I first had trouble touching and cooking meat and eggs. That began my journey toward being a vegetarian [eat eggs and dairy], then a vegan [no animal products]. I wondered what I could eat. But I’m finally understanding and enjoying the variety of plant foods, their potential combinations, and the incredible spices and herbs. Now my goal is to be a great [and fast] vegan cook. I’m still learning, but here are five of my favorite recipes:
*Use organic if possible, but it’s not mandatory.
*MS Tip: eating low fat, low refined sugar, and low or no dairy is helpful to me [and maybe you too].
A Lovely Latte
1 to 1¼ cup of favorite non-dairy milk [I use Soy Dream Vanilla Classic]
Warm milk for no more than 45 – 50 seconds in microwave, or for short time on stove top. If milk gets hot the molasses will taste bitter;
Add 1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses, stir, and enjoy this treat!
*Blackstrap molasses is a good source of potassium, iron, and calcium. I drink it for iron and calcium.
Into a container [with a top] put 1 or 2 cups old-fashioned oats [2 cups for 2 people or 2 days supply];
For each cup of oats add:
– 1 Tablespoon Ground organic, brown, flax seeds [or gold flax seeds]
-1 Tablespoon organic, raw sunflower seeds
-1 Tablespoon or handful of organic, raw almonds or other nut [like walnut or pecan];
-Optional: Add 4 chopped dates for sweetness [or let chopped fruits provide sweetness]
Add enough liquid so that oat mixture is fully covered. I use Soy Dream Vanilla Classic Soy Milk or pineapple juice. But use your favorite non-dairy milk, favorite non-sweetened fruit juice, or water. Stir well to mix in any dry parts;
*Yummy option: instead of adding milk, juice, or chopped fruit, stir in one 15 ounce can of mandarin oranges and 1 can fruit cocktail, and extra water if needed.
Cover and put mixture in refrigerator overnight;
Next morning stir in your favorite chopped fruits. I use apples and pears, pineapples, or grapes.
*Eating this cereal makes me feel so happy, strong, and energized that I can do 7 to 10 minutes on the elliptical machine [usual time is 3 minutes]!
Raw Carrot Salad
Peel and rinse organic carrots;
Grate carrots fine in food processor, or in chopper;
Mix in mayonnaise, so mixture holds together, but is not soggy. [I use Veganaise Grapeseed Oil Dairy-Free Mayo – in refrigerator section of health food store];
Enjoy as is or add a few raisins and chopped walnuts.
Raw Kale Salad
Remove stems from organic kale leaves;
Tear leaves into small pieces;
Wash leaves, rinse, then pat dry;
Add a little olive oil – to lightly coat leaves, then rub oil into leaves;
Add 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion – optional;
Add some salt or favorite seasoning [like Mrs. Dash]
Add some chopped or grape tomatoes, then enjoy.
Add into a blender or Vitamix 1 cup water;
1 cup rinsed*, organic, raw cashews or cashew pieces – *always rinse 2 to 3 times [dirty]
1/3 cup pimentos or chopped red bell pepper;
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast [at health food stores on shelves, or supermarket in baking aisle];
1 ½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon sea salt [or regular salt]
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Blend ingredients until creamy smooth;
Then mix in with warm pasta; or mix with tomato sauce and add to pasta; or mix with some salsa for a nice chip-dip.