kiwi mango processor salad

Tonight's "processor" salad included lettuce as a base, topped with broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage made into slaw using the food processor, topped with sliced kiwi and mango, topped with 2 Tbsp sunflower seeds and spicy pecan vinegar. It was surprisingly good!

quick pressure cooker veggies

I usually eat lunch at home and I need it to be a fairly light meal (no beans, but you can add them!) because I exercise only 3 hours later. Today's meal was very good so I'm posting it. This was a somewhat random selection of veggies from my fridge, but I'd say a good combination is definitely the eggplant, tomatoes, mushrooms and pine nuts. Then just add other veggies from your fridge, like broccoli or greens or cauliflower etc Edamame would be good. It was a bit too much food though so I'm going to list smaller quantities than I used, for next time:

Ingredients:
1/3 eggplant
nappa cabbage or bok choy
shiitake mushrooms
1/2 can tomatoes
1 Tbsp ground pine nuts

Cook everything except the pine nuts in the pressure cooker for 3 minutes; let cool under pressure for a few more minutes. Grind the nuts in a coffee grinder, add to the dish and stir. I thought the combination of flavors was quite yummy. The mushrooms added a meaty taste, the eggplant and pine nuts were good. Here's what it looked like:



















Oh, and since housemate doesn't like eggplant or shiitake mushrooms I made her favorite veggies which were potatoes, peas, carrots, tomatoes, and corn. With 1 Tbsp ground pine nuts added in:

Article on junk food addiction

Darryl from the Fuhrman forums pointed us to this fascinating article. Junk food is as addictive as cocaine or heroine. Yikes!

food this week

I might not have much time to blog during the week. I tend to repeat meals a lot and then move on to another set. So I'll probably do that this week. Today I decided to modify my brekky and lunch because having beans at lunch makes me too full during my 4 pm exercise class; and my brekky hasn't been big enough, making me too hungry at lunch. So I think I just need to move my beans to brekky time. Here's my plan for the rest of the week.

brekky: blended salad and 1 cup of beans (more like 1/2 cup of beans in a thick veggie broth). See Sunday's post for a description of this week's beans.

lunch: cooked veggies. My fridge has eggplant, broccoli, cauliflower, shiitaki mushrooms, sweet potato, beats, carrots, rutabaga, bok choy and cabbage. And I've got canned tomatoes. So it will be a different combination every day, maybe with some ground seeds or pine nuts.

Dinner: "processor" salad made from lettuce, spinach, maybe edamame, and veggie slaw (broccoli, cauliflower, etc shredded in the food processor with the grater blade), topped with sweet pea or berry dressing, probably the berry dressing until I get tired of it. Then when I get tired of the veggie slaw, I'll try something else like bell pepper, or just chopped broccoli and cauliflower. I'm really liking raw broccoli and cauliflower on my salads these days. It's a new thing for me. I used to hate raw broccoli and cauliflower!

soy milk

If you buy soy milk, be sure to look at the labels. Most have added sugar and chemicals. The only ones that I know of that are organic, and whose ingredients contain only soybeans and water are: Organic Edensoy, Unsweetened; and Westsoy Organic Unsweetened.

GreenGiant from the Fuhrman forums researched these brands and found the following:

Edensoy organic soymilk was the top choice by the Cornucopia Institute. This institute's report on soybeans is eye opening and it rates Edensoy as the only product generally available nationally with a 5 of 5 rating:

"Behind the Bean: The Heroes and Charlatans of the Natural and Organic Soy Foods Industry"
http://www.cornucopia.org/soysurvey/OrganicSoyReport/behindthebean_color_final.pdf

Interesting, WestSoy and many others are rated 0 of 5 because they refused to disclose their source of soybeans.
Last week I bought the WestSoy because it was on sale. Today I bought Edensoy because the WestSoy was all gone. I guess I"ll go with Edensoy in general, assuming it tastes okay.

curbing overeating

From March 18 to March 26 I logged every piece of food I ate in CRON-o-meter. It's very instructive to do that every once in a while. It showed me that I take in about 1500 calories per day, with a protein percentage about 9-13%, fat percentage 20-30%, and the rest in carbohydrates. I get the full range of amino acids and tons of vitamins and micronutrients. The real magic is that logging my food intake really curbs overeating. For one thing, the extra effort to add in the food is just enough obstacle to make you stop when you are full. And it gets you thinking that I'll stop now at lunch because I want this treat at dinner. It's amazing how well it works.

Well, now I want to try going solo and not use this tool and see if I can listen to my stomach to curb overeating. I did notice I got hungry between meals using this tool, so I should get hungry between meals without it. That will be my gauge. That's how it's supposed to be, but I got out of the habit of listening to my body because, well, it's enjoyable to eat. But I was reminded in the last 10 days that it's much more enjoyable to eat when you are hungry. Of course, Dr. Fuhrman says this all the time. This is typical for me to learn from experience that Dr. Fuhrman was right again.

weekend cooking

I've been having fun in the kitchen lately. Well, I think I always have fun in the kitchen. I bought some soy milk last week in order to enjoy a small banana walnut milkshake, so I've been including it (the soy milk) in other recipes too. It does add a nice creaminess. Maybe I'll buy it more often. I made a yummy berry salad dressing on Friday using soy milk, and put that on my "processor" salad. Yesterday I included soy milk in housemate's smoothies. Today I had another banana walnut milkshake. Tomorrow I'll likely make another yummy berry salad dressing for my salad using soy milk.

Then I also had fun with beans. I got my package of heirloom beans. I used the Runner Cannellini beans yesterday. They are so big, nothing like any I've bought at the store before! And of course, very good. On Friday, I was using up some beans from the freezer, and to make them go farther for two big serving topped over veggies, I cooked up a turnip, and blended that in the blender with sesame seeds and lemon juice and water from the veggies; then combined that with the beans. Well, since that's a common lunch for me, I decided to add this stuff to my beans yesterday while preparing, along with some parsnips and leek. So I cooked those up separately (turnip, parsnips & leek), and blended them in the blender with sesame seeds and lemon juice, then combined them with the beans. Recall I cook the beans in a mixture of carrot, kale and celery juice (mostly carrot). Then inspired by a recipe by Hojo on the Fuhrman forums, I added some nutmeg and thyme. Well, I might have combined too many different flavors. Maybe I should have left off the sesame seeds and lemon juice or the nutmeg and thyme. But it actually is still really good. And now I can just pour these over cooked veggies during the week--over veggies, it's good for the beans to have a bit of a bite to them, so I think the sesame seeds and lemon will be a bonus there. I meant to add mushrooms, but I'll just cook those with the veggies so they'll be there. (Note edited a week later: these beans made us fart more than usual. Not that that should stop you from making them).

Yesterday I also made my 7 blended salads for the week (my breakfast).

Today I made sweet pea guacomole and salsa for housemate. I improved on my old version of the sweet pea guacamole by adding a small kiwi. The salsa was new too.

I should be set for quick and easy meals this week.

yummy berry dressing

This is like pouring a milkshake over your salad, which would not be appealing over tomatoes and onions but over lettuce, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and bok choy, it is yummy.
Ingredients:
1 cup frozen sweet cherries
1 cup frozen blueberries, strawberries, or raspberries, or mixture
1-2 Tbsp hemp seeds or raw cashews
2/3 cup soy milk or hemp or almond milk or water
1-2 Tbsp blueberry vinegar

Blend in a blender until smooth. It if is thicker than you'd like, add some water. I eat the whole thing on my dinner salad.

winter salsa

It's not the season for fresh local cilantro and fresh local tomatoes, so I used some more local ingredients, which were

1 can tomatoes (from the garden or store), drained
1 carrot
one small apple, peeled and cored, or 1/2 regular (I eat the peelings)
part of red bell pepper (1/8 or so)
dried cilantro (or fresh from the store if it looks reasonable--ours was droopy)
tiny bit of onion and garlic so it doesn't overwhelm the other flavors. Add more to taste.

Blend up in a blender. The carrot thickens the sauce.

Thursday, Mar 25, 2010

Last night, work was on my mind so I just ended up working almost all night long! I was kind of panicked about some deadlines and today had a bunch of non-work things to do so I guess I just gave up sleep and worked last night, and did my non-work things today. Weird. Amazingly, I felt fine, occasionally tired but fine today. I probably slept about 2 hours last night. Often I overeat when I'm tired but I did okay today.

Brekky was my usual blended salad. Then I kept snacking while preparing lunch. Lunch was another giant processer salad. "Carrots" from the Fuhrman forums calls them Micro-Processed salads. Mine are a little different because I don't process the lettuce, just the veggies. By processed, I mean run them through the food processor with the grater blade to make a veggie slaw. My salad had lettuce, kale, asparagus, broccoli, yellow bell pepper, and sweet pea dressing. I guess that's almost the same as a few days ago with the addition of kale. I ate some carrots and two tiny apples too. The apples are local, one of the few local items we get this time of year.

I'm glad I snacked because lunch wasn't until 2 pm. The huge salad was good and filling.

Then I wanted a treat at dinner (and I figured I got plenty of veggies already!) so I had a banana milkshake. Yummy! It was small, but just right in satisfaction. I also had a couple of really good very small blood oranges. wow! I hope there's more in the store next time I visit. And I ate a bunch of carrots as I so often do.

Total calories: 1371, protein 51 g (12%), carbs 269 g (72%), fat 25 g (16%).

banana walnut milkshake

This is really simple and really good. It's the same ingredients as banana ice cream but I can't make banana ice cream with a single banana--I need two to blend up and that's usually more than I want (the rational part of my mind that is). This has enough liquid to blend just 1 banana and so it's a milkshake!

Ingredients:
1 frozen banana (wait until it ripens to freeze--yellow with some small brown spots)
3-4 walnut half pieces (about 0.35 oz) (use less if you want fewer calories)
1/3 cup soy milk
touch of vanilla (1/8 tsp)

I freeze the banana as is. Let it thaw a bit (5-10 minutes), chop off the ends, slice longways into two pieces, and then the peels will come off pretty easily. Blend eveything in a blender. Add a little more soy milk if you think you need it.

This is a small milkshake--just a little dessert treat. It has the perfect amount of sweetness for me. If you want more, add a date or date syrup, but I found this just right. Yum!

Total calories: 198; protein 4 g (8 %), carbs 29 g (54%), fat 8 g (38%)

wed march 24 2010

I can't sleep so I may as well blog. wah.


lunch and dinner were eaten out

lunch: cabbage salad and kale with sweet potato sauce. I added a little apple to the sweet potato sauce and it was a winner.

dinner: big ole' salad with edamame and sesame-berry dressing.

My calories were kinda low so I had a little orange (1/2 small) and a carrot when I got home at 9:30 pm. I think I was hungry for it. I know when I'm really hungry, but otherwise I don't really know. So I guess I wasn't really hungry.

I'm running out of food and don't have time to go grocery shopping. I hope I can make it until Saturday morning with what I have. I'm stressed out about work and church stuff I guess, which is why I can't sleep. which of course will only make it worse tomorrow when I'm tired. Stress doesn't seem to have much useful about it. I try to fend it off most of the time but have not been succeeding lately.

Total calories today: 1379; protein 52 g (12%), carbs 224 (59%), fat 45 g (29%).

"processor salad"

I got this idea from "Carrots" on the Fuhrman forums. Carrots puts a whole bunch of raw veggies, fruit, and nuts in a food processor to make a more compact salad. I like chewing my greens, so I chopped my lettuce and spinach with a knife as usual, but I put the veggies through the food processor.

Ingredients:
lettuce and/or spinach, chopped
veggies of your choice (broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, asparagus, bell peppers, kale, whatever you have around)
delicious dressing of some sort; e.g., sweet pea dressing or yummy berry dressing.

Put the chopped lettuce in a big bowl. Run the veggies through the food processor using the grater blade. Pour these on top of the lettuce. Pour tons of dressing on top. Spend the next 40 minutes eating it! Today, my veggies were broccoli, asparagus, and orange bell pepper. I used both green leaf lettuce and spinach.

Tues., Mar. 23, 2010

Brekky: blended salad, kiwi

Lunch: 2 servings of cabbage salad, plus a carrot and apple peels (from prepping the apples) while preparing. I added boiled peanuts to the cabbage salad and really liked them! Peanuts are actually a legume, so this will count as my beans today.

Dinner: Huge "processor salad" topped with huge portion sweet pea dressing. Boy was that satisfying. It took about 40 minutes to eat. That satisfied my love of eating too.

Total calories: 1500, protein 55 g (11%), carbs 276 g (66%), fat 37 g (22%).

Mon, March 22, 2010

I'm still trying to adjust my meals to my new schedule. I don't want a big lunch because my exercise class is at 4 pm. Then I end up not eating as many calories for brekky and lunch, and can only eat so much at dinner, so my overall caloric intake has been lower than I expected. Maybe I should eat more at breakfast--or just eat more nuts and seeds. But except for being pretty hungry by lunch and dinner, I haven't notice a problem with it. I'm quite full right now at 8:30 pm and yet, according to CRON-o-meter, I only ate 1352 calories today. I guess I'm pretty sedentary apart from my 2 hour bike ride/exercise class, and I'm almost 50 years old (whoopie!). Here's what I ate.


Lunch: veggies in turnip sauce. The veggies were brussels sprouts, cabbage, and shitake mushrooms. I cooked everything in the pressure cooker, then blended the turnip with lime juice (didn't have lemon), 1 Tbsp sesame seeds, and 1 Tbsp sunflower seeds, and poured it over the veggies. I made a similar dish for housemate using her more favorite veggies: peas, corn, brussels sprouts and carrots. I snacked on a carrot while preparing, and had a kiwi for dessert.



















Dinner: big ole' chopped up salad (11 oz of greens! that's lettuce, romaine, and spinach) topped with bean soup. To the bean soup I added a sliced banana, 1 Tbsp chia seeds, 1 Tbsp shaved coconut, and 1/2 tsp curry powder. I call this my bean curry salad. It's quite good. You could use chopped apple and raisins instead of banana. I snacked on carrots, small apple, and 1/2 red bell pepper while preparing.















Total calories today: 1352, protein 56 g (13%), carbs 258 g (71%), fat 24g (16%).

Food log for Sun, Mar. 21, 2010

Brekky: blended salad.

Lunch: cabbage salad. This was just chopped cabbage, 1 apple, 1/4 cup raisins, 1 Tbsp sunflower seeds, and 1 Tbsp orange vinegar. I ate a big carrot while preparing. Cabbage and carrots are now the only local produce I get at my co-op.
















This wasn't enough food to hold me until dinner, but that's all I wanted at the moment.

So then I was out and about and really hungry by dinner time. I was at a fancy reception and the food was not healthy-friendly. I find that the fancier the event, the harder it is to find scraps I can eat. At the lower-scale events, I can usually find some raw veggies or fruit that aren't stuffed or topped with some animal/oil/salt product. Then I went grocery shopping and finally got home to prepare my dinner salad.

Dinner was a yummy big salad of romaine, green leaf lettuce, and spinach, raw cauliflower, edamame, and blueberry-sesame dressing (a full batch!). In the dressing I replaced some of the orange juice with a kiwi. I ate a giant carrot while preparing the salad. I should have taken a picture before adding the dressing so you could see the ingredients better:















Then I added up my food totals and it was only 1100 calories! that's way too little. I thought, I feel full enough. But I don't want to wake up at 5 am hungry. So I made a little banana-cherry freeze dessert to split with housemate (1 frozen banana, 1 bag frozen sweet cherries, 1/4 cup grape juice). That was yummy but then I felt a little too full. Then I realized I forgot to add a bag of blueberries to the food log. Fortunately my total calorie intake was still reasonable. Normally I eat more but I didn't exercise much today. A lesson learned is to listen to my stomach more. I was satisfied after my dinner. However, I do dislike waking up at 5 am hungry.

Total calories: 1406, protein 42 g (9%), carbs 278 g (72%), fat 29 g (19%).

Beans!

I just ordered every type of bean from Rancho Gordo. They sell heirloom beans which are really good and creamy and don't take long to cook because they are fresh. I ordered 24 packages of beans at about $5 a piece. Now that is more than bulk beans at the local grocery store. But, the total cost including shipping is $127, and this will feed me for 6 months. Beans provide about 20% of my calories. So spending $127 for 20% of my calories for 6 months? Good deal!!!!!

Edited a week later, here's the shipment, minus the cannelloni beans that went to the kitchen for soaking:

Practice makes Perfect

Here is a post I made today on the Fuhrman forums expressing my view on learning, practicing and putting your stumbles into perspective:

Learning to be a nutritarian is like learning to play a music instrument or a sport--I mean really learning, not dabbling. When you are really learning a musical instrument, you practice every day. Practice consists of repeating exercises and songs over and over until to get it right. Making mistakes is expected---practicing over and over until you get it right is the solution. You don't apply moral judgments to yourself when you get the song wrong---rather, you expect to get it wrong until you practice enough to get it right. Now, the mistakes can be frustrating in both cases, but that's different from applying moral judgments to yourself. Anyway, my point is, as long as you are practicing daily and working to get it right, you are making progress! Each mistake should be thought of as a learning opportunity: how do I manage a similar situation next time? What you don't want to do is drop out for 3 months and go on an unhealthy food binge. In that case, just like if you don't practice your instrument for 3 months, not only do you not learn, you unlearn and have to relearn when you start up again. So if you blew it yesterday, you just need to keep practicing, like the rest of us. We're all practicing every day!

Mar 20, 2010 food

Today was a Saturday and that means smoothie time, where I make a week's worth of smoothies for both me and housemate (that was 15 total today)! First I went to a yoga class, then stopped at the grocery store, where I also scored a 25-lb bag of juicing carrots in addition to all the smoothie ingredients. I just realized I go through about 10 lbs of carrots every week! 5 lbs goes to juice used in my bean soup, and I eat the other 5 lbs! My shopping cart looks pretty strange with all the bagged lettuce, oranges, and berries (and the 25-lb bag of carrots). Anyway, the good news about today is that I didn't overeat as much as I usually do while making these smoothies. I made a meal out of my snacking but I monitored it and even though I got pretty full, I didn't overeat, on calories anyway.

Brekky was a blended salad before yoga. This is low-calorie (there were no seeds in it) and I was hungry afterwards so I got a small handful of brazil nuts at the grocery store and ate them.

Lunch was snacking on smoothies and their ingredients (grapes and orange slices). I ate about 1/2 of a housemate smoothie and 1 of mine--from the leftovers. Next time I will use fewer oranges in mine so I have fewer leftovers. I also had 1/4 cup sweet peas.

Dinner was raw veggies (carrots, red bell pepper, broccoli, cauliflower, and celery) and sweet potato-kiwi dip.

Total calories: 1466, protein 37 g (8%), carbs 291 g (73%), fat 31 g (19%).

I didn't eat beans today (I usually have some every day), but it was still a healthy and enjoyable eating day.

sweet potato kiwi dip (with raw veggies)

I'm almost embarrassed to call this a recipe. This is just what you do with the few ingredients you happen to have on hand and you feel like a quick easy meal. But it was good!

Ingredients:
1 medium or 1/2 large sweet potato, baked (1 hour, 350 F), let cool
1 kiwi
1 Tbsp hemp or sunflower seeds, or 1/2 oz walnuts or other nut (or 1/4 cup boiled peanuts)
1 Tbsp lemon or lime juice, or flavored vinegar
1/4-1/2 cup water

Peel the sweet potato and kiwi (I eat the skins of both and like them!). Blend everything in a blender to desired dipping consistency. If you want more of a sauce to pour over steamed veggies or greens, add more water and maybe some pomegranate juice. Today I didn't use any nuts or seeds because I had plenty earlier in the day--it was still great. I ate this with raw carrots, red bell pepper, broccoli, cauliflower, and celery:












I'm curious to try a sweet potato banana dip sometime. You never know 'til you try it if it will be awful or great.

tracking my food intake, again..

A few days ago I started tracking my food again in the CRON-o-meter program. I'm trying to curb my overeating and the extra effort of measuring and logging my food seems to work. It also makes you realize when you are not overeating on calories but are just eating too much volume, so you need more high calorie food. And today it helped me gauge what to have for dinner after eating more than usual for lunch. I'd rather not have to do this, as it seems obsessive. But eating differently from everyone else in society has psychological effects and is I think the root cause of my overeating (e.g., wanting to have my own treats when I see other people eating their treats), so I need a tool to balance it.

Anyway, since I'm monitoring my food intake, I might start blogging it daily again like I used to, if I have time. I always thought this was the unique and possibly useful thing about my blog, to demonstrate by example what a "nutritarian" eats on a daily basis. Is it? Can you let me know? If so, I'll make an effort. Thanks!

this week's meals; curried salad recipe

Boy I have been busy since I got back from vacation. I changed my schedule around again so I can get more work done. It's working and so I haven't had much time to post. Now I work more in the morning and moved my exercise to the afternoon. So that affects my meal plans. I'm eating lighter brekky and lunches, and heavier dinner---more like the way most people eat. typical meals are:


lunch: cooked veggies (any kinds including tomatoes); or raw veggies and dip. I've been into my peanut-banana dip this week. today I had asparagus, cabbage, and tomatoes; and various seasonings (italian type). I need to add pine nuts to my grocery list. Ground pine nuts is good in this kind of dish. Tomorrow it will probably be raw veggies and peanut-banana dip for the second time. Friday I'm thinking collards with sweet potato sauce or sweet potato/peanut sauce (on the collards). I guess I'm into peanuts (limited amounts of course) this week.

dinner: big salad with beans or edamame, seeds (usually ground), and fruit, and a little flavored vinegar. basically kitchen sink salad. Tonight's was really good which is why I'm posting. It turned into a curry dish. I took my usual beans, which already have great flavor from the carrot juice and veggies blended in (this week was eggplant and onions); added 1 tsp curry powder, 2 Tbsp ground seeds (take your pick--today was sunflower and sesame), a chopped banana, and chopped grapes! This was really good. Curry is good with sweet fruit. I had this over a chopped head of lettuce. yummy!

These are all fast meals to prepare because I made the blended salads on the weekend and froze them; made the beans on the weekend and froze them into individual servings; and use the pressure cooker at lunch time to cook the veggies.

tropical fruits

For the last several days of our Florida trip, we stayed in Florida City and visited the Everglades. A highlight of this stay was our daily visit to the Robert is Here produce stand. Here's Robert serving up some customers:















They grow some exotic (to me anyway) tropical fruits that I tried out. My favorite was the Sapodilla:

















You have to let it ripen (it gets soft) before eating it. Then it tastes really good! It was described to me as like a pear with brown sugar. That's a pretty good description. I ate one before it was ripe and it was awful, so you definitely have to let it ripen!

Next on the list was Canistel:

































This you also have to let get really soft. It's described as like "sweet egg custard." The first time I tried it, it seemed weird. But the second time I really liked it. It doesn't take long for my taste buds to adapt to exotic tropical fruit!

Then there was the Carambola:



















aka, star fruit, and you can see why. This is not so exotic, as I've seen it in my co-op. But it was much better here. I see now I'll have to let my co-op version ripen before eating it. It's described as tasting like a cross between an apple and an orange. I suppose. It's more tart. It's good.

The Asian guava was interesting:



















You eat is kind of like an apple, with or without the skin. But once you get to the seeds, you stop. It's good hard or soft--a little sweeter soft. It's like a tart but sweet apple.

Then there was the ugli fruit:



















peeled:













It's like a cross between an orange, grapefruit, lemon, and lime. Tart, but good and juicy. It's very ugly on the outside and that makes it fun.

And of course, there were the delicious tree-ripened oranges:



















My favorites were the temple oranges.

And the grapefruit--I didn't take a picture of those.

And I also tried some passion fruit. It's extremely tart and strong, like very strong orange juice. It was good as a dip for raw sweet potato sticks.

I also tried some tamarind. It's very tart and sweet. I wasn't in the mood for it on its own, but it would be good in a dressing or dip.

Florida salad

I'm visiting the Florida Everglades. There's a great produce/fruit stand near my hotel, called "Robert is Here." They have locally grown vegetables and fruit. So that is supplying me with my meals. Here's today's salads (lunch and dinner):

The bottom layer is romaine lettuce, locally grown spinach, green beans, zucchini, and broccoli. Yum! Then I quartered a couple of fresh tree-ripened oranges, and squeezed the juice on here to marinate the salad and veggies. I age the rest of the oranges after squeezing (it was breakfast time).
















Next I added some beans and my ground seed mixture (sunflower, hemp, chia, flax). I ate some beans and seeds too to add to my breakfast.

















Then I added the fruit: ripe banana, mango and local strawberries. yummy yummy. I forgot to take a picture of the final product.

Here I am eating lunch.





















I also had a locally grown ugli fruit before dinner. It was really good. And it is extremely ugly. Don't let that deter you.

Dr. Fuhrman lecture in Clearwater, FL

By coincidence I planned my vacation to Florida when Dr. Fuhrman was speaking in Clearwater, so I attended his lecture there. I also got to meet Holly from Milwaukee who I'd met online (Furhman forums) but not in person yet. So it was funny that our first "meetup" is in Florida. I also saw Lynn, June and Arnell. We heard about the lecture from Arnell, who arranged it. She has created this amazing community of people who attend her lectures and potlucks centered around Dr. Fuhrman's plan. The talk was sold out and there were over 400 people there. The audience was well-informed too. I was just amazed. I was amazed by Arnell and how she has transformed a community! And then there was the lecture. It was just great, with lots of jokes and interaction with the audience. Dr. Fuhrman had to talk fast to get all the information in and that was part of the fun as he rattled off all the things that will go wrong with you when you eat the Standard American Diet (SAD), among other things. His answer to the himalayan salt question was hilarious (non-funny version: it's bad for you). I got at least 3 useful things out of the lecture: 1) reinforcement of information I knew pretty well; 2) some new information about heart disease that explains my family history some more; and 3) Good old fashioned motivation and reinforcement that this is the greatest way to eat on earth, and to resist feeling different and funny about it.

Regarding point #2, Dr. Fuhrman said that heart disease doesn't affect everything at once, but starts first in the places with the most turbulence. So that got me thinking, my mother and I both have heart murmurs (mitral valve prolapse). My mother had a heart attack in her late 60s, a day after running 5 miles. She prided herself on eating healthy and being an avid jogger. She wasn't overweight by American standards. When that happened, I concluded that what you eat has no effect on your health because I thought she was a healthy eater. Well, by Dr. Fuhrman's standards she wasn't a healthy eater and she was overweight. Plus, I wonder if the heart murmur contributed to more heart disease because that causes more turbulence in that valve. She had atrial fibrillation which was either the cause or consequence of the heart attack. Well, before I started eating healthy, about 5-10 years ago, I was getting more and more of these irregular heartbeats. And I didn't seem to have as much oxygen capacity as others when I exercised. I told people that I know how I"m going to die: of a heart attack; hopefully at a late age, but that appeared to be my weak link. Of course, little did I know there are many other things that can kill you from the American diet, like cancer. Now I have great aerobic capacity (it's my muscles that give out first), and no irregular heartbeats. I'm so glad I accidentally discovered how to eat healthy because it will definitely mitigate the consequences of this heart murmur I have.

Regarding point #3 about motivation: While I was just posting about what I am eating on this trip, I was thinking, people who read this are going to think I'm crazy, eating salads while on vacation instead of enjoying food at restaurants. But Dr. Fuhrman reminded me, nope, I'm not crazy, I'm healthy! I'm kayaking and mountain biking and hiking and running on this vacation. I'm not hobbling around, overweight, taking pills for my cholesterol, diabetes, and high blood pressure (not that I feel superior, I don't! just lucky...). Those are the direct consequences of eating the Yucky American Diet (I think we should start calling it the YAD instead of the SAD). All that packaged processed "food," isn't real food, because it has no nutritional value and is addictive. It's poison! So yeah, I'm weird, but I'm not crazy. Sometimes I think I'm crazy because I'm different from everyone else. So it was fun in the lecture to see that I'm not different from Dr. Fuhrman and at least 100 other people in that audience.

vacation eating

I'm on a road-trip (by car) vacation in Florida, something I shouldn't be revealing to the burglars at home...oh well. I'm doing my usual eating of salads consisting of the best-looking produce in the local grocery stores, beans, and nuts & seeds, actually seeds right now, and flavored vinegar. The beans and seeds are critical because everything else is raw and I'd be too hungry without the calories and fat from the beans and seeds. My last grocery stop was at a great store in Clearwater, FL, where I got local organic kale and lettuce of many different kinds, zucchini, celery, oranges, and cabbage. Then I also got organic (not local) brocolli, cauliflower, sweet potatoes, carrots, apples, and berries. The berries only last a day, so the orange and apples carry me through the next few days before my next grocery stop. Before I left home, I ground up about 1.5 lbs of mixed seeds (hemp, sunflower, flax, and chia); and I sprinkle a few spoonfuls on each salad. I make 2 giant salads every morning, usually for lunch and dinner. I also brought some raisins and flavored vinegars and my supplements. Brekky is snacking while preparing lunch and dinner; or berries and beans on those lucky days; or other fruit and beans. Today it was cabbage salad. I divide one can of beans between the three meals. Today's salad has kale at the bottom, marinating in orange juice and orange vinegar, topped with broccoli, black soy beans, romaine and red lettuce, seeds, zucchini, cucumber, and sweet potato. Normally I'd have fruit in there but I'm saving my remaining apples for tomorrow's brekky and lunch. Tomorrow we'll hit the Whole Food store in Naples and get a fresh berry fix--probably for dinner, and stock up on fresh produce again. Here's a salad from a few days ago:














One day I was out of lettuce so I made a bean dip from mashed pinto beans, my ground seed mixture, some cumin, and some of this passion-carrot juice I got for travel companion. She doesn't like it so much so we won't be getting it again, but it was good in the dip. Then I just had raw veggies and dip for lunch and dinner. It was super yummy. Note on raw sweet potatoes: the organic garnet are the best! I hope I can find some at Whole Foods tomorrow.














Okay, the rain has stopped. Time to resume my vacation!