Wednesday, October 25, 2006

We've Replaced Allison's Lettuce with Parsley...Will She Eat It?

Today, inspired by Valerie Boutenko's raw vegan weightloss ideas, I decided to replace my salad's romaine lettuce with a combination of Italian parsley and cilantro. Cilantro is one of those herbs that people either love or hate, and I am a cilantro lover. Still, I was nervous that the salad would be too strong-tasting. I am happy to report that the salad was delicious- the herbs were definitely strong tasting, but they complemented the salad veggies nicely. And let me add, I think I've never had breath this fresh-smelling before (haha!).

I've always chosen romaine over other lettuces for the protein, but according to, parsley is a better source of protein, plus its protein is more complete. It has 3 grams of protein per 100 grams while romaine has 1 gram of protein per 100 grams.

What else? Well, 100 grams of parsley has 34% of your day's iron, 14% of your calcium, and is off the charts for vitamins A and C. There were no listed cautions against parsley, but I noticed that it is higher in sodium than is romaine: 56 mg for 100gms of parsley, and 2 for romaine. Another caution might be price- I haven't yet compared the two. (I used about 1/3 of a bunch of cilantro and 1/3 of a bunch of parsley for my salad, stems and all; I believe the entire bunch of Italian parsley was under $1.50. I can't remember the cilantro price). Along with the veggies, all that parsley made for a big salad that will keep me full until evening. Now I'm looking forward to trying curly-leaf parsley because it'll make a very attractive-looking salad.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Tough Week

I think I picked the wrong time to start bootcamp! My mind has not been on it the way it should be, what with classes and moving. My daily exercise usually involves some combination of moving, packing and cleaning, not the concentrated time at the gym or outside that I would prefer. I haven't been able to get online daily due to no longer having internet. But in 11 days I'll be in my new place and will be able to settle down. Due to selling some furniture I finally had money for real food shopping. I went to Whole Foods and got great salad fixin's from the salad bar. I'm just about back in business! Too bad the house is a shambles right now. :-)

The people at the Raw Food Boot Camp are very nice and supportive. I feel bad that I'm not up to standard at the moment, but having the bootcamp behind me is helping me keep my ultimate goals in mind despite my many current challenges.

I got a nice message from "Jennifer" who was very concerned about my gaining 35 lbs eating raw. Let me clarify- I went off my raw diet for a while! I didn't gain weight eating raw, although I did stay stuck at the same weight for weeks before I slipped off the wagon. Looking back, I know the high fat content of my raw diet was part of the problem, but I was enjoying the nuts, olive oil and avocados too much to give 'em up. After I'm finished losing weight, I will probably eat a diet much higher in fat than the Raw Food Bootcamp recommends, but for weight loss I think their 20% fat limit is better for me.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

35 lb weight gain! Sad, but True.

Seems impossible to gain so much weight in such a little amount of time. I swear I must have a physical disease. I weighed myself earlier this week and found myself back over the 300 lb mark. I'm not depressed about it - maybe I'm still in shock. Really, though, I just kind of took it as inevitable; that's what happens when you overeat SAD and don't exercise. Maybe I have an extra-sluggish metabolism or something as well, but the main thing is that I ate more calories than I expended. BIG TIME.

So I joined the bootcamp. I don't have a lot to report yet because I really haven't been doing it properly due to not having enough money to buy the right amounts of groceries. Erratic access to the internet caused me to miss a couple of days of proper logging, too. After my move these conditions will improve. We have to do one hour of exercise daily for the bootcamp. Right now mine consists of packing boxes, tossing out stuff and cleaning. Boy, do I ache right now!! I've been taking Alleve this week. And my allergy symptoms have gotten so bad that I've taken out the old pills to use until my raw diet cures me of that problem again. I swear the symptoms are worse than last year. My sinuses hurt for three days straight.

I was eyeing a marathon that's being held here in December. If they have a walking version of it (often there are 5k walks associated with marathon events) I might try to envision myself training for that- it's a motivational tactic more than anything; I'm not sure I'm really gonna do any 5k's in the near future. Right now it's hard for me to think positively about losing weight at all, but as long as I look at the situation logically instead of emotionally, I know it will happen. There's no way that eating raw and going to the gym will not result in weight loss. Perhaps by next month when things are more settled I'll feel more positive about things. One day at a time remains the mantra.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I'm Back on Board!

OK- the good news: I've joined Carlene's Raw Food Bootcamp. If any of you have ever heard of it, its basically a very tough, regimented weight loss program based on a raw food diet and daily exercise. I look forward to getting back to my previous form through this program. I started today, and have had my first salad in a long time. I'm out of practice so it tasted rather bland to me, but the blandness reminded me that I'm doing the right thing. Soon my taste buds will have recovered from the junk I've been eating and I'll enjoy the full range of fruit and vegetable flavors again.

The exercise will be interesting. I have a jump rope, so if I need to conserve gasoline by avoiding the gym, I can certainly jumprope in my garage. The weather is perfect, thank goodness, so I can get some outdoor walking done as well (although the bootcamp requires one hour of exercise that makes you sweat, so I'd have to trot!).

I haven't weighed myself but I'm guessing I've gained about 20 lbs over the past weeks. I fit into clothes that I wore back in June! I have to weigh myself today since it's the first day of bootcamp for me. I'm excited about reversing the problems I've re-acquired since going off the raw diet. I wonder how long it'll take for...

1) the darkened pigment on my face to go away
2) my cold/allergy symptoms to disappear
3) my back pain to lessen
4) my dry skin to improve
5) my swollen ankles to deflate!

I do have some fear that the bootcamp will cause me to lose weight too rapidly and make more of my hair fall out. On the other hand, if I have to choose between less hair and overcoming food addiction, I'll choose overcoming the addiction. I'm used to wigs and hats now! I'm not happy about them, but I'm used to them.

Well, I'll keep you all posted on how the bootcamp goes! Wish me luck- oh wait, this isn't about luck it's about hard work! Ten hut!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Survived Another Week

I'm still not eating raw, but I'm feeling better about my food choices over the past week. I've rediscovered soup, so I'm eating vegetable soups and my mangos. Eventually the healthier foods will outnumber the less healthy foods.

Financial problems have caused me to lose my cable, phone and internet access so that's impeded my ability to blog this week. However, I try to see the positive in everything. Local internet cafes help me with internet access and also get me out of the house. Not having a phone means no bill collectors to wake me up at 8 a.m. on Sundays. No cable means less distraction from studying. See? We can make it work!

I'm looking at some new housing options this week so that I can actually afford to live and even save up some money. The upheaval will not be pleasant and I'd prefer better choices in where to live, but my longterm goal of getting my Ph.D is my main guide to the decisions I make. If my decisions get my closer to that goal, then even if they are unpleasant I want to try to make them work. The move puts me closer to places that are necessary in my life- school, work and the gym.

Not being on raw is a real catch-22 for me these days. Eating raw really helped to lift my depression earlier this year, but it didn't make it impossible to get depressed over new situtations. Due to that depression I stopped eating raw. I think that if I'd managed to stay on raw, I wouldn't have gotten as depressed as I have. I'm hoping to follow Ren's lead in getting outside support in returning to raw (namely, bootcamp) but I simply cannot afford it. I'll let you all know what happens with that.



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