From Here to Health

My journey back from autoimmune disease

Boo Hoo:((

So everyone in my house is sick:((  It started with Presley, then it was Cooper, then Finnlee, then me and now Doug.  The worst part of it is that I was supposed to go to the taping of Sarah Fragoso’s new paleo cooking show tomorrow and now I can’t:(  It is taping in Nashville and my whole family was going to travel with me.  We were going to push through it and move ahead until my hubby got sick today and that was the final straw.  I had both my cookbooks ready to sign and I was pumped:(  Oh, well.  These things happen.  I will get over it and hopefully another opportunity will come my way.  Let me also take this opportunity to tell you  that I am officially off the sugar detox as this illness has sent me head first into a half gallon of ice cream.  I crave ice cream when I’m sick.  Luckily, this is first time I have been sick in a long time so I don’t have it very often.  Here’s to hoping my next post will be bring good news!

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21 Day Sugar Detox Days 21-21

So it is over.  It is currently the morning of the 22nd day and I’m done!  I am going to try to recap a little of what I learned during this 21 days in list form.

1. I was addicted to sugar and treats!  For the first 2 weeks I had some of the “legal” treats everyday.  But, for the last week, I let them go and I survived!  It was nice to feel that sense of freedom from that need.  I found what worked for me was going for a quick walk or picking up a book and relaxing for a few minutes.  It was more doable than I thought possible.

2. The “detox” period lasted longer than I thought it would.  I was probably 2 weeks in before I quit having periods of what felt like low blood sugar.  I felt better on days when I at least had some rutabaga or something slightly more starchy.

3.  I think I have SIBO.  Or some other form of intestinal issue.  I took on the autoimmune protocol while doing this 21DSD because of it.  I am also flirting with low FODMAPs.  I experienced what I think was some die-off effects about 10 days in and continued for a week that made me come to this decision.  Because of this, I plan to continue with some version of this plan for the next few months.

4. I LOVE kombucha!  And I can tolerate liver, for my health.

5.  For those of you wanting to know, I felt like I lost a little bloat/water weight during the first week.  However, once the SIBO/die-off stuff came on, the bloating came back with a vengeance.  It is still working it’s way out.  I think for the more “typical” person though, there would be some weight loss.

6.  My CrossFit performance was better and more effortless.  Yesterday’s WOD was:

20 Hand Release Push Ups, 21 Thrusters (squat to a ball then push barbell overhead) , 400 meter run

20 Hand Release Push Ups, 15 Thrusters, 400 meter run

20 Hand Release Push Ups, 9 Thrusters, 400 meter run

I finished first in the gym with a time of 11:47.  And it wasn’t very hard.  I used a 35# barbell for my thrusters so next time I will have to raise that.

For dinner last night I made a delicious soup.  Well, I guess delicious is debatable because 2 of my kids wouldn’t eat it.  It was grass fed beef, organic green beans, parsnips, carrots, celery, red and yellow onion, garlic, parsley and lots of seasonings.  Basically anything I had left in the fridge or freezer.

Fridge/Freezer Soup

Fridge/Freezer Soup

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21 Day Sugar Detox- Day 19

Just 2 more days!! I’m not sure why I am really excited because I have no plans to go on a sugar bender.  Guess it just feels good to finish something.  Except a book.  Lately finishing books has felt a little sad.  I LOVE that feeling of suspense, of not being able to wait til I have a quiet moment to pick up my latest and bury myself in a world that is not my own.  Bittersweet for sure.  And Downton Abbey!  That did not feel good to finish last night!  Why in the world did they do that??  I think maybe they are going to try to hook up Tom and Mary.  Doug (my hubby) says no, but I think they have worked too hard to give Tom awesome hair to not make him center stage!  More on topic, I am feeling better today. My joint pain is not getting any worse and my energy level and sleeping are improving.  I went to CrossFit today.  I can’t really do snatch because of the inflammation in my elbow, so I did backsquat and clean.  I went up by 5 pounds on each of those lifts so I was happy.  Slow and steady!  The WOD was 5 hand stand push ups, 5 pull ups and shuttle runs across the gym for 8 rounds.  My time was 6:57 which seemed pretty good. I did my HSPU off a box, but I did my pull ups without a band:)

Here’s some pictures of a few of the things going on around here:

Liver Stew

Liver Stew

This was the second attempt at liver and it was much easier to eat than the first.  My husband made it once again because I still haven’t worked up to cooking it myself.  But I will!

Green Pastures Fermented Cod Liver/Butter Oil Blend

Green Pastures Fermented Cod Liver/Butter Oil Blend

Finally got my Fermented Cod Liver Oil!  It comes highly recommended by Diane Sanfilippo and Liz Wolfe.  I am only taking about 1/4 tsp right now to get acclimated.  We’ll see how it goes.

Sausage and spaghetti squash "pasta"

Sausage and spaghetti squash “pasta”

This was breakfast for me today and it was so good!  I found this pastured, local sausage and then added it to cooked spaghetti squash with a little full fat coconut milk, ghee and parsley.  Very yummy!

Pork Burgers over Arugula

Pork Burgers over Arugula

Lunch- Pork Burgers from Paleo Indulgences. I used some Tessmae’s Zesty Ranch over it and it was quite yummy!

Popsicle eating sickies

Popsicle eating sickies

My 3 babies all eating popsicles.  A rare treat around here- generally only allowed when they are sick, which they all are:(

 

 

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21 Day Sugar Detox – Days 15-18

Sorry I have been MIA for the past few days. Both my boys have some flu-like virus thing going on, so that has disrupted the normal schedule around here a bit.  I can’t believe I only have 3 days left on the challenge!  I also can’t believe that I’m not jonesing for some sugar.  I mean, sure, I would take it, but it’s not like the only single thought that I am having 24/7 which is what I expected.  I have learned so much through this process.  I started out thinking that is would just be about the sugar addiction.  As time went on I realized that the physical things going on had to have a deeper root.  After some research, I think it is likely that I have SIBO (small intestine bowel overgrowth) or some other type of gut dysbiosis.  It doesn’t come as a shock.  I have always been prone to yeast issues and this is a similar deal.  I think the reason that I have been having such a difficult time physically with this 21DSD is because I am having some die-off effects.  From my reading, it appears that you can have a worsening of symptoms when you go through this phase.  So…I think I am going to have to stick with the no/low sugar approach for some months to come.  I have also taken on the paleo autoimmune protocol (no eggs, nightshades, nuts, seeds) because my systemic inflammation is up.  I thought it would improve since we all know that sugar is inflammatory, but per the usual, my body didn’t respond in the typical way.  Instead of giving up and going back to the sugar though, I am going to stick it out.  I think my gut is just not fully healed from the Celiac and leaky gut issues.  The past 2 years have been full of lessons learned.  Sometimes I wish they would have all come at once so I wouldn’t have to keep going through this cycle, but then I’m sure I would have just been overwhelmed and possibly given up.  In His perfect timing, God has given me just enough information to make progress without making me feel like it was impossible.

On the more day to day stuff, I have been walking, CrossFitting and doing a little yoga.  I would love to find a yoga studio I could go to a couple times a week, but I don’t think it is feasible at the moment so I am doing it at home.  We did G.I Jane at CrossFit on Monday and I was pretty pleased.  I did the level 1/2 which was 75 burpee pull ups.  My time was 9:39 which I thought was respectable, especially considering that I am not in top form.  Not much else going on.  I still haven’t finished the Downton Abbey season finale, but I know about the giant spoiler.  It was bad enough with Sybil, but now Matthew?!  I’m going to try to finish it tonight so I can actually see what happens.

This was my breakfast this morning.  I though it was delish!

chicken sausages, spinach, rutabaga hash

chicken sausages, spinach, rutabaga hash

My boys finished this Lego project.  I thought it was good for a couple of 10 year olds:)

LEGO Taj Mahal

LEGO Taj Mahal

 

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21 Day Sugar Detox Days 12-13

I just need to say that I slept 9 hours last night so I am so excited this morning!!! Yeah!! The last 2 nights I didn’t sleep at all.  I did however read 2 complete novels that were pretty awesome.  I came off my thyroid meds because I think they were giving me anxiety and heart palpitations.  I don’t know for sure if it was the cause or not, but I didn’t feel it last night so we’ll see. I thought at first that I felt wonky because of the 21 DSD, but then it went on too long for that to be the case.  Then I thought it was “lady business”, but that came and went too so I was left with the new thyroid med.  I guess we’ll see how I do without it and then make a decision with my doc.  I feel the need to confess that I fell off the 21DSD wagon on Valentine’s Day.  I split a small coconut vanilla tart with my kids.  It was literally only a few bites, but I wanted to offer full disclosure.  It was yummy and I don’t feel guilty, which I think is awesome.  I am already planning to do the 21DSD again towards the end of March.  I had such a sugar issue that I think it is going to take multiple times for me to get where I want to be.  As an example, I have been having the sugar-free allowed “treats” every day during this go around.  Even though I am not getting the sugar, I think I am still psychologically addicted tothe treat mentality.  I would like to do it again without the allowed treats.  Or at least cut them down.

On another topic, we ran 3 miles at CrossFit on Wednesday.  I am not a huge fan of running and I hadn’t done more than a 400 m sprint since coming off my hiatus in December.  I did the whole 3 miles (in the freezing cold) and it was mostly fine until my knee started hurting during the last 1/2 mile.  Hopefully it won’t give me any problems at the gym today.  Yesterday I was so tired from 2 sleepless nights that my only exercise was a walk with the kids.  It actually turned out to be the best part of my day.  My daughter held my hand the whole way and talked her face off.  My boys would periodically turn around from in front of us to say “love you mom.”  My sweet babies.  It was a blessed Valentine’s Day!

Thanksgiving Meatballs, avocado, spaghetti squash, cauliflower/parsnip mash

Thanksgiving Meatballs, avocado, spaghetti squash, cauliflower/parsnip mash

This was lunch on Wednesday.  There was a 5th meatball but I literally forgot it in the toaster oven and it caught on fire!  Like a serious flames shooting out fire.  I had to wake my husband to put it out and then the kids and I had to spend the rest of the afternoon at my mom’s house due to the smoke!  The 4 I ate were delicious.

I made “healthier” peanut butter cups for the kids for Valentine’s Day.  Here’s Finn after one of hers.

Enjoying a Peanut Butter cup with Breakfast

Enjoying a Peanut Butter cup with Breakfast

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21 Day Sugar Detox Days 9-11

My mornings have been so busy the past few days that I haven’t had time to post.  At the point, I’m not sure I can remember the specifics, but I’ll try to hit the high points.  Let’s start with the “not so good.”  I have kept thinking that this detox was giving my low blood sugar or energy crashes, but I am starting to wonder if it is the new thyroid meds.  Over the weekend I began feeling anxious with a racing heart and just “off.”  I had been feeling hormonally off for about the past 10 days.  At first I blamed in on my cycle and then I blamed in on the 21DSD, but I’m not totally convinced it was either of those things.  Last night it was the worst and I barely slept a wink.  I didn’t take my thyroid meds this morning and emailed my doc to see what he thinks.  On the to good stuff.  My mother and Finn and I went to see Mary Poppins on Sunday night.  It was so much fun!  Finn was absolutely mesmerized by the scene changes and tricks.

Finn and I at Mary Poppins

Finn and I at Mary Poppins

It was her first big live theatre show and I hadn’t been since she was born so it was such a treat!  As a side note because I am looking at my bangs in this picture, I think I am going to have to start washing my hair with real shampoo at least once a week.  I like the No Poo method in some ways, but my hair is just getting too heavy.  As I refine my method I will keep you posted.

Yesterday, the kids spend a big portion of the day making Valentines.  Finn has 20 kids in her homeschool class that she needs a Valentine for and I agreed to let her pick out any ones she wanted.  But no, she said, “Aren’t you supposed to make Valentines?”  So that is what we have done and they are turning out really cute.  And it didn’t end with the kids her in class.  Yesterday I mailed large envelopes of Valentines to relatives living out of town.  My floor is still covered with supplies.

Presley and Finn in the Valentine Factory

Presley and Finn in the Valentine Factory

I made the Paleo Parents Carbonara recipe for dinner and then had the leftovers for lunch.  It was super yummy.  I added wild caught shrimp to mine because I had it on hand and my kids love shrimp.  This is the leftover lunch portion.  It looked better the night before.

Shrimp Carbonara

Shrimp Carbonara

 

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21 Day Sugar Detox- Day 8

I’m hanging in there.  That sounds a little desperate.  It’s not really that bad, I just still don’t have as much energy as I would like.  So…I broke down and had some sweet potato today.  It’s not exactly against the rules.  She recommends it for athletes which I think I qualify for on some days.  Not today mind you as I only walked for about 30 minutes and did some rebounding for 10 minutes.  Maybe it is something else entirely, but at this point I am assuming the lack of energy is from the lack of carbs.  Other than that, I finished a novel, started a new one, did some housework, some homeschool testing with the kids (yes, they weren’t thrilled since it was Saturday), and running some errands.  The boys had a new friend spend the night and it was so much fun to watch them together.  They had the best time riding scooters and plasma cars, playing on the playset and climbing trees.  I love watching my kids be kids.  Not sitting in front of the TV numbing their sweet minds.  No judgement really.  I mean, I love some mind-numbing TV for myself, I just don’t love it for my kids.  Their new friend was so sweet and didn’t think our paleo eating was weird.  As a matter of fact, he cleaned his plate at both dinner and breakfast!  I love that.  My kids cleaned their plates too.  Pretty hard not to since I made 50/50 Bacon & Grass-Fed Beef Burgers from Eat Like a Dinosaur and pastured sausage and Easy Peasy Pancakes from the Paleo Parents for breakfast.

My Paleo Lovin' Boys

My Paleo Lovin’ Boys

Mine are the two on the ends:)  Cute, right?

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21 Day Sugar Detox- Day 7

One week under my belt.  And it hasn’t been torture.  Who knew?  I went to CrossFit today even though I had a massive, hormonally induced headache overnight.  As soon as I got to CrossFit and got moving the headache actually went away.  But then, I sort of killed it during the WOD (I beat everybody which hasn’t happened in months) and my headache came back!  The WOD was 21 KB swings and 400 m run- 12 minute AMRAP.  I think what got me was the running in the super cold temps.  I came home and strapped on a cold pack and laid down and it was gone in about 20 minutes.  The rest of the day was pretty low key.  I had this notion that I needed to rest so after Finn and I got haircuts and lunch, I pretty much just chilled at home with one had attached to my kindle.  I did not know what I was missing before I got my KindleFire HD for Christmas.  I thought I wouldn’t like it because I am kinda old school and like the feel and smell of an actual book.  However, I am also a neat freak and have 5 people living in a modest house.  A house where we homeschool, no less, so the books are pretty much coming out of our ears around here.  My kindle allows me to have my Bible, a fiction novel, my latest paleo or health related book, and usually some other nonfiction all going at one time without giant piles of books everywhere.  I also never liked to read on the computer, but this feels different for some reason.  While my boys and I watched Netflix and read books, my hubs and and Finn went to the Daddy Daughter Round Up at church.  I’m pretty sure she gets more dates with my husband than I do!

Doug and Finn in Western Gear

Doug and Finn in Western Gear

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21 Day Sugar Detox Days 4 & 5

So there isn’t too much to tell.  I am hanging in there.  The sugar cravings really aren’t nearly as bad as I expected.  I have had a few “episodes” that I think were low blood sugar.  Been able to work through them and they have passed pretty quickly.  I was expecting to have more energy than before (and maybe that is still coming) but right now I have less.  Hopefully that will level out with a few more days.  My monthly cycle is upon me and has given me a raging headache so it may be more related to that than the sugar detox.  Reserving judgment on that til the 21 days are up.  On a more positive note, I feel like I have been eating more food than usual and I don’t think I have gained any weight.  I’m sticking to my 2013 resolution of no scales, but judging my my clothes, I would venture to say I may have lost a little even with the arrival of Aunt Flo.  I went to CrossFit on Day 4 and on Day 5 I did an hour walk while I listened to the Balanced Bites Podcast and then did  15 minutes of yoga.  I am loving how I don’t feel the need to judge myself for not going full force all the time.  I love being kind to my body.  It is a gift I am so glad I finally learned to give myself.

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21 Day Sugar Detox- Day 4

So far so good!  I have felt a little wonky for short moments, but overall I am doing good without my constant sugar fix!  I have been having the 8oz of kombucha and the daily green apple that is allowed.  I also made some chocolate almond butter cups that she has in the treat section.  Before you get all revved up, they have no sweetener.  They are made with 100% cocoa and the almond butter is unsweetened.  To be honest, they are incredibly bitter.  But when you really feel like you need that fix, they seem to do the trick.  I think I may be eating slightly more food at my meals.  Or maybe not total food, but I feel like I am eating more fat.  Not that it is a problem.  Not that it’s not.  I don’t know.  My breakfast on day 4 was especially good.  It was a variation on a recipe from paleOMG.

Rutabaga Hash with sausage and avocado

Rutabaga Hash with sausage and avocado

Dinner was salmon cakes over salad with the rest of my avocado.  I am in love with Tessmae’s dressing which I generously poured all over the top of my salad, hence the higher fat content I spoke about earlier:)

Since I didn’t go to CrossFit on Monday due to a late wake up and a horrendous sore throat, I went today.  I moved back to my 20 inch box jumps!  Yeah!!  And did a deadlift with no hip pain!  Small victories make me so happy!  Speaking of things that make me happy.  This is my sweet girl diligently working on homeschool while I type this post.  I shouldn’t even get started on things I’m grateful for this morning, but I am too blessed to list it all- sunny weather, glorious night’s sleep, kids who slept through the night, kombucha in my left hand, a child who willing does her homeschool, a husband home early from work….BLESSINGS!

Finnlee working on Phonics in the morning light

Finnlee working on Phonics in the morning light

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