Lexd's Blog

I write about what I want!

Three weeks and beyond December 1, 2009

Filed under: food — lexd @ 8:53 pm
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Thanksgiving has come and gone (SIGH). I’ve surpassed my goal of being gluten free for two weeks. It’s now time to re-assess the situation.

According to my weight on Wii Fit on Saturday, I haven’t lost any weight. My clothes are fitting a wee bit different, which is a bonus. But I secretly expected to drop some poundage. I suppose Thanksgiving is not a good week to try and drop some weight, but it’s frustrating nonetheless.

I know that weight shouldn’t be my primary goal — instead, it should be a healthy GI tract, and the ability to fully and normally digest my food. In this, I may have succeeded. Without gluten, I rarely end up with a “food coma” … yes, even after Thanksgiving dinner. I used to refer to them as “carb comas,” which may in fact be indicative that I actually knew what was going on. At the time, I thought that was normal.

The only time I’ve experienced reflux in the past two weeks is when I bend over soon after eating, or when I overeat.

This is a marked improvement over where I stood a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, since I started taking Aciphex in conjunction with a new diet, I can’t conclude that the lessened reflux was directly a result of the diet. But, I’m just happy to be able to drink red wine without (warning: TMI) throwing up in my mouth for hours. I can’t really afford to pay the $130/month that this prescription will cost, so I’ll probably switch to something OTC in 2010.

These results make it pretty easy for me to say that I’m going to commit to a gluten-free lifestyle for at least a little longer. I talked to my dad about it over the weekend, and he said that normally it takes 4-6 weeks for your body to manifest the results of changes in diet/exercise/medication. Since I’ve been doing this for more than three weeks, I only have a few to go. He said at the rate I’ve been exercising and changing my diet, I should start to see some marked results in the weeks leading up to Christmas. Unless I get crazy with the eggnog, that is (yay for dairy)!

Plus, I have a ton of gluten-free food in my pantry, waiting to be eaten. No sense in wasting it 🙂

With that being said, I continue my gluten-free journey. I’m going to keep blogging about it, because it really does keep me accountable. And, I like to share things that I discover … even if it’s only with myself a few months down the road.

I’ve set up my December desk calendar (I know, I’m such a nerd), and finished color-coordinating it (bigger nerd). There’s a lot of blue — my workout color. At this point, I’m doing 2 Pilates/yoga classes a week, and 3 — if not 4 — spinning classes each week, with Friday being my day off. I have planned my entire month, and I’m going to stick to it.

Or, if I feel like it, I may start run/walking those “off” days at the gym. On Saturday I went with my dad and brother, and was actually on the treadmill for an hour, doing run/walk intervals (5.1 flat and 3.6 on a level 3 incline, respectively). I managed more than 4.5 miles! My ankles, shins and hips hated me the next day, but I was so proud of myself. Even my crazy athletic brother was impressed.

My end goal is to lose weight by the time our cruise rolls around (we fly to Houston on January 17th). This may seem weird, but I don’t want to put a number down. Really, I’d be happy with making any progress toward a lower weight — and keeping that number moving down. I saw pictures of myself from the last 2 months recently, and I am heavier than I realized. It’s time to change things up.

wine photo from guttorm flatabo’s Flickr

cruise ships from jimg944’s Flickr

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Day 16 November 24, 2009

Filed under: food — lexd @ 4:12 pm
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I am so anxious to be home in Seattle, planning out the details of our Thanksgiving menu, and figuring out where I can plant myself in the kitchen. I got the impression that we are only having 2 people besides our immediate family over. This was kind of disappointing at first, but hio leftovers!

I am so antsy and ready to be home!

 

 

 

 

Food for today:

Breakfast: 1/2 c. peanut butter panda puffs, 1 banana, 1/4 c. almond milk

Snack: Apple, decaf lemongrass green tea

Lunch: Sushi!

Snack: Banana w/PB

Dinner: Something at Cafe 118 — going there with a friend tonight

I massively underestimated the amount of cereal I had left. It was a sorely disappointing meal, and unlike yesterday (where I was full until almost 1 p.m.), I’ve been really hungry since 10 a.m.! So, more protein in the morning = full longer. I guess all those experts really know what they’re talking about.

I’m going to go check out the Cafe 118 menu later in the day. It’s a raw foods restaurant, and I’m really excited to try it!

Also, I’m going to try and blog what I end up eating at home for the next week. I have a feeling it’s going to be difficult. I have a lot of comfort foods I associate with being in my parents’ home, and about 75% of them are wheat-based. Thank goodness my sister and mom want to eat gluten-free, too. It’ll ensure I’m focused on something positive, and not all the foods I really want to be eating.

Here’s to a quick work day (please please please)! 🙂

 

Thanksgiving Menu November 23, 2009

Filed under: food — lexd @ 4:31 pm
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My family gets pretty amped up about Thanksgiving. In fact, it’s my favorite holiday of the year.

Since I was old enough to responsibly wield a knife, each year Dad_D and I would set up shop in the kitchen between 7 and 8 a.m., eat some oatmeal, and then commence destruction of the space over the next 4 hours.

At first, I just prepped for the stuffing (and seriously, we usually have 16 people over, so that’s a lot of onions and celery to chop). I was the sous chef to my dad’s executive chef, always with Arlo Guthrie’s “Alice’s Restaurant” playing in the background. We’d leave the windows and door to the patio open to let the brisk air blow in, and make a dent in the awful heat that comes from using all four gas burners and an oven simultaneously.

My dad and I are pretty adventurous in the kitchen, so each year, we tried something new.

We’ve deep-fried a turkey (messy messy messy), we’ve rotisserie’d a turkey on the BBQ (if you do this, make sure your rotisserie device can handle the weight of your turkey. Take it from me — a device designed for a 4-6 lb chicken will not correctly cook a 22-lb turkey. It will set it on fire). We’ve tried about 20 different recipes for stuffing (and found 2 that work!). I discovered “the ultimate gravy recipe” last Thanksgiving. I’ll share it when I get home. Warning: It involves giblets. Yes, I am that hardcore.

What we’re trying this year is a gluten-free Thanksgiving. I thought it would be a stretch, but my dad just emailed me and told me that both my mom and my sister want to start gluten-free diets, as well.

Not only does this make me feel less guilty about controlling the menu (because it’s not just for me), but it’s reassuring to know that I have two other people who support me … and who look to me for support in return.

I’ve been collecting Thanksgiving recipes on Delicious for the last two weeks, and sent the list to my family last night. I think my dad was worried that a gluten-free menu would deviate a lot from that which we’ve grown accustomed to. As I said above, we’re all for innovation, but is Thanksgiving really Thanksgiving without stuffing?

That being said, just because food is gluten-free doesn’t mean it has to be vastly different from what you’re used to eating. We’re still having turkey (this recipe from Gluten-Free Girl and The Chef), stuffing (a swiss chard one with gluten-free bread cubes instead of potato bread, and then a gluten-free cornbread sausage stuffing), mashed potatoes (already gluten-free!), and some vegetables. I’ll post the recipes for the stuffings later — I don’t have them on hand.

Here’s my Delicious list of Thanksgiving recipes (HA HA PUN). Peruse, and enjoy!

onions/celery picture from tsuacctnt’s Flickr

fire picture from Ciaran McGuiggan’s Flickr

 

 

Day 15

Filed under: food — lexd @ 3:59 pm
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I can’t believe I’ve been eating gluten-free (with minor setbacks) for more than 2 weeks now.

The surprising part?

The hardest part was the first three days. Gluten-free requires an entirely new set of habits. I still tend to reach for bread when making meals, but it’s getting easier. I’ve just started to think about meals and cooking in a different way. The only thing that’s going to be really hard is baking. I’m unsure how my gluten-free all-purpose flour replacement is going to react in baked goods.

I think, to get my bake on, I’m just going to make a whole bunch of baked goods this holiday season and give them away. I get to bake, I get to make people happy. I’ve never had a huge sweet tooth, so it’s not the “eating” part of baking that I’m going to miss. There’s something very relaxing about baking. Sometimes I’ll even forego the stand mixer and do the hard work myself.

I’m sure BF won’t mind having to be my taste-tester, either. 🙂

Today’s Food:

Breakfast: 2 scrambled eggs, with leftover sausage, onions, mushrooms and olives, sprinkled with some cheese. Put this over a Van’s gluten-free frozen waffle (SO GOOD, I swear they are better than Eggos), glass of OJ.

Snack: Apple or banana, decaf lemongrass green tea

Lunch: An Amy’s frozen meal — I picked up the baked ziti and the rice pasta mac and cheese last week.

Snack: Whichever piece of fruit I didn’t eat in the morning

Dinner: Something with chicken breasts and mushrooms, with broccolini on the side. Can you tell we’re trying to clean out the fridge?

It’s 10:30, and I’m still full from breakfast (I usually don’t have that much protein in the morning), so I may not need a snack. Then again, we’re not going to lunch until about 1, so who knows what my tummy will do.

Some important lessons I learned in eating this weekend:

  • Beer has gluten in it (even if it’s not wheat beer). I didn’t feel too awful afterwards, but I only had a pint before switching to Magner’s Cider. And then moscow mules. Saturday was fun.

  • Getting a burger without the bun is the best idea ever. Leaves more room for things like cider, and french fries!
  • The Publix by my apartment in Sanford/Lake Mary has as good of a selection of gluten-free items as the Whole Foods in Winter Park. I was so impressed this weekend, when I took the time to browse the aisles. No more making a second trip to WF!

 

 

Pie image from Benimoto’s Flickr

Moscow Mule image from WikiTender’s Moscow Mule entry

 

Day 12 November 21, 2009

Filed under: food — lexd @ 1:01 am
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Apologies for the late post. I wasn’t able to access WordPress from work today.

No big news, other than

a) it’s Friday

b) I saw New Moon. And it was awesome. But I left work in a less-than-stellar mood, so I was pretty grouchy for the first 20 minutes or so.

Menu!

Breakfast: Bob’s Red Mill hot cereal, the usual way (flax, almond milk, coconut)

Lunch: Turnip/kale/bean soup, 1 slice bread

Snack: Apple, 3 slices of turkey

Dinner: Pizza eggs (scrambled eggs with sausage, olives, onions and mushrooms, topped with pizza sauce and 2 T cheese), probably a bottle of wine

Apparently I have to eat my bread faster than I did this week. I have 2 slices left out of the ones I set out on Sunday, and they were too moldy to save 😦 Maybe it will help if I keep it in the refrigerator?

I may try to make a gluten-free pie crust this weekend, to try it out before T-day. I’m stunned that I’ll be home with the fam in FOUR DAYS 🙂

 

Day 11 November 19, 2009

Filed under: food — lexd @ 5:43 pm
Tags: ,

So, I’ve come to some conclusions recently.

First of all, when I went to Ethos on Tuesday with a coworker for lunch, I was an idiot and ordered a cookie with my lunch. This sounds harmless, except that I totally neglected to ask if the cookies were gluten-free.

They weren’t.

I spent the majority of Tuesday evening feeling like total crap (super bloated), and confused as to what triggered these feelings. To my knowledge, I had eaten gluten- and dairy-free the whole day. Except not. That one stupid cookie.

Last night, BF brought home some Publix carrot cake (to my chagrin). I asked him why he did that, since I couldn’t eat it, and he said, “but the doctor said you could!”

This is frustrating. No, I don’t have celiac disease. But yes, obviously my body doesn’t react all that well to gluten. I’m still confused as to where to get tested for gluten sensitivity/intolerance. When I point this out, BF shrugs — he thinks I am kind of a hypochondriac.

So, I had a small piece of carrot cake, and lo and behold … felt like crap after what was actually a wonderful dinner (the risotto turned out FABULOUS!! We are having leftovers tonight).

So, now that I know gluten isn’t so cool with  my body, I’m going to try on some lactose. I’m currently drinking a packet of Oregon Chai’s chai latte mix (there’s powdered milk in there). We’ll see how I do with this, and then with cheese maybe tomorrow. If I can eat cheese again, I think this whole diet-change will be marginally easier.

Also, as a bonus, on Tuesday my Pilates instructor said I had noticeably lost weight – awesome, especially considering I’ve been taking it easier at the gym lately (that will have to change come December, got some lbs to lose before that cruise in January!). I’ll weigh in on Sunday, and see what happens. Even if I’ve lost a 2 pounds, that’s a step in the right direction. With the right diet and consistent exercise, I’ll finally be able to achieve the results I’m looking for 🙂

Today’s meals:

Breakfast: Bob’s Red Mill Mighty Tasty Hot Cereal, shredded coconut, almond breeze, flax; decaf lemongrass green tea

Snack: Banana w/PB, chai tea latte (seriously, I love this stuff)

Lunch: Kale/bean/parsnip soup, 1 slice GF bread

Snack: Apple, w/PB (I may not even need this, b/c of the chai tea latte, I will probably eat lunch kind of late)

Dinner: Pork roast (on sale at Publix! Go BF!), leftover risotto, steamed or sauteed broccolini (haven’t decided yet).

I’ll avoid the cake for dessert tonight, but I am thinking about dropping by Whole Foods or Chamberlain’s to see what they’ve got cooking in the GF desserts section. It’s easier to resist the siren song of Publix carrot cake if I’ve got something else to occupy myself with.

cookie picture from denise cross’ Flickr

cheese picture from cwbuecheler’s Flickr

 

Day 10 November 18, 2009

Filed under: food — lexd @ 7:59 pm
Tags: ,

Went to bed with a fever last night. It hadn’t broken this morning, so I decided to work from home today.

I must work better from home or something, because I definitely got two great hits for one of my clients this morning. And, I got to make a sweet lunch (although my gluten-free bread doesn’t hold up as well to this treatment).

Today’s food:

Breakfast: 1 piece gluten-free toast, + peanut butter, flax seeds, banana

Lunch: Grilled “cheese” sandwich with turkey, faux American cheese, grilled onions and tomatoes, with pizza sauce (bizarre-sounding, but awesome)

Dinner: Chicken thighs, wild mushroom risotto (!!) and broccolini. I’ll let you know how it turns out!