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Survive, Thrive, Day Five

October 6, 2010
Taco Bell

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Lee and I have very different ways of looking at this diet thing. I seem to have a more fatalistic view.

I say things like, “I’ll never have another Milky Way!”

She says, “I chose to not have a Milky Way today.”

I say, “We will never be able to eat pizza again!”

She says, “I chose to not eat pizza in this moment.”

She can’t imagine thinking of this as a forever kind of choice. I can’t imagine tempting myself with the possibility of eating chocolate or cheese tomorrow. We have two very different ways of facing this challenge. One works for me. One works for her. We can both look at this as an adventure. Much of the time, we do. We are both choosing to do everything we possibly can to be together as long as we can.

Last night, we went to the grocery store after dinner. We still ended up with far more in the buggy than we intended. I think we were both grabbing things hoping we’d eventually fill the cart with food that was actually appetizing to us. It’s been like instead of putting one foot in front of the other, we are putting one forkful in front of the other. Lee described it well about the late night apples; an apple is not what we want, but if we just eat it anyway, the burning desire for something sweet and gooey does subside, at least to tolerable levels.

Yesterday, we had the baked potatoes, carrots and onions along with brussel sprouts, sliced tomatoes and corn. When we got back from the grocery, Lee warmed up the hot-as-hell bean mixture (that is lasting forever!) and the hot-as-hell rice and made us each a taco in a small corn tortilla. It was the most delicious thing yet. I felt like we’d gone through the drive-thru at Taco Bell! We had skipped the morning smoothies so I made us each one for our late night snack. I used the last of the frozen peach and yogurt mix, two bananas and a about a half cup of non fat milk. Neither of us wanted anything else.

Keeping our fat intake to below 10gm has highlighted how much fat we were eating. That regular size Milky Way? 13 gm of fat. One thin slice of cheddar cheese is 7gm and one little tablespoon of regular mayonnaise is 10gm. The canola oil I thought was so heart healthy and I used cooking almost every meal has a whopping 14gm per tablespoon. I used much more than a tablespoon just to saute onions or brush on asparagus before roasting. The asparagus tasted just as good without it by the way.

The plan for today is to make homemade hummas with the fresh herbs I still have growing on the front porch. I’m also planning a spinach and mushroom combo along with roasted squash. I found a recipe for corn chowder in an American Heart Association cookbook I have. It calls for chicken or cheese, but maybe it’ll be edible without either. I love corn no matter how it’s prepared.

We looked all over the store last night for those crackers I’d bought last time. They are called “Ryvite” and come in several varieties. The one we had and liked so much was “Pumpkin Seeds and Oats.” They are all made with whole grain rye flour. The pumpkin seed ones have 1.5gm fat per large cracker, 45mg sodium and 1gm of sugar. Anyway, after combing the store, all we found was one box of the plain rye variety. Then, as we went to check out, we walked around the small clearance shelf. There they all were, marked down considerably, too. We bought all seven boxes. Can you tell we have an energy of panic and maybe a slight subconscious fear of starvation going on? I trust this too shall pass.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Donna permalink
    October 7, 2010 1:14 am

    Did you know that you can substitute applesauce for vegetable oil in many, many recipies? Look on line for how to use it. Also, check out website: Tons of great recipies for your “plant based menu”. Notice I use the word menu instead of diet? Diet is such a “tricky” word. The minute we say it, even to ourself, the brain begins to rebel!

    After my bypass, they sent a Nutritionist in to visit with me in my hospital room. I am a Polish girl! They may as well have sent a witch! She was telling me that moving forward, to help my heart, I would have to stop eating all of the things I love the most! (It goes without saying, that the STOP SMOKING “police” traveled through the room hourly – my daughter a card carring member – lecturing constantly.)

    FAT FREE DIET! Talk about your “F” words! Okay, I thought, let’s think about this. As a recovering alcoholic, I had given up alcohol more than 35 years ago. After way to many failed relationships, I had given up sex several years earlier (not necessarily a conscience choice). Due to a serious lung condition I had become unable to do things I truly love like gardening, swimming and dancing. Right before my surgery I had been so short of breath I could barely walk my dogs. I understand that my continuing to smoke was very harmful, and I had pledged to try to quit, yet again. Now, they wanted my food! Good grief! We should have skipped the bypass and gone ahead and just let me go, what would be the meaning of life without any vices??

    It might be interesting to note that each night when my daughter left my room and went to my apartment to “take care of the dogs” and “stuff”………she was very busy. She was replacing all the food in my house with strange items – for instance, butter was gone, replaced by a product that tasted and cooked just like butter according to the label. (I will not digress into the false promises on product labels.) My beloved Coffemate was replaced by fat-free half and half – that has to be an oxymoron. I knew there was red meat in there when I went to the hospital, but I’ll be darned if I could find it now! What kind of life does not have steak? By the way, she also hid all my ashtrays! I thought she threw them out until I finally found them in the back of the china cabinet several months later.

    I have always been small, even thin, and I had watched many of my friends struggel with “diets” for years. The agony of defeat they suffered time after time was heart breaking to see. Diet was a negative word in my book, and remains so today. “Look,” my busy daughter said to me, “think of it as something besides a diet. It’s a lifestyle change. Or how about it’s just Today’s Menu.” So, as I ease drop on your lifestyle change, I will not use the word DIET when I stick my 2carrots worth in, I will instead refer to your MENU.

    I have loved your precious Lee for 15 years, and I love you now as well. I will hold you both in my evening meditation as you develope your daily menus. Try to remember that it takes 30 days to break a habit (the food we love is really only a habit) and only 28 days to create a new one. Coffee without fat free half and half tastes funny to me today….I am not sure when that happened, but it was a while ago.

    • October 7, 2010 2:04 pm

      And I love you my heluvmyn friend. How brutal to come home after bypass and find your friendly food gone. I whine silently often, already somewhat resentful for having to give up my cigarettes. That I could and did does help though, remembering that after so much time I still want to smoke and have come so close, so many times. I love the “F” word comment, too! I read last night about the applesauce. I did that years ago when I was trying to get more real food in my kids, but had forgotten about it. I’d bought applesauce too, just cuz Lee likes it with just about everything. I will have no vices left following this “menu.” At least none that are readily identified as such. Funny you mention the diet word. I never had to either. Was never overweight until now. But I did diet nonetheless. AS free as I say I’ve been with my eating all my life, I was always aware of what I was eating. I even dieted from time to time, not to lose weight, but one healthy trend after another. I tried the Blood type diet, the food combination diet, the body type diet…I think I felt best on the food combining plan. I didn’t stick with any of them, mainly because they didn’t include chocolate! I still believe that someday science will prove that milk chocolate is good for us. However, I will give it up. Or, should I say, it’s not on today’s menu.

  2. Lynn permalink
    October 7, 2010 3:29 am

    Whew! Fellow soujourners on this health journey. I’m doing the ‘vegan’ thing which is very close to Dr. Ornish………which I did for awhile years ago. It’s much easier now as there are many more easily available products in the supermarkets.

    But, it’s still hard for me…..with CAD and diabetes now, I really struggle with the sugar things…….don’t miss meat, eggs, chicken, dairy, ………..but oh, a candy bar!

    I’m going to read your blog every day to bolster my initiative!


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