Tuesday, January 31, 2012

vacation laziness and temptation

I'm staying on the straight-and-narrow -- barely!  :-) 

It's only my second full day here at my daughter's house, and i ate some CIAB*!  <gasp>  Well, it was something i found at the grocery store, and since the ingredient list contained acceptable things, i decided to indulge (this IS a vacation after all...).  Vegetable crisps cooked in palm oil, with a little sea salt.  Not bad, but not luscious enough to be a danger.

We also went out for lunch, where i made up for the fact that i didn't bring along my copper supplements.  A dozen oysters on the halfshell -- YUM --they just give me a glow of content....  I feel a LITTLE guilty about the blackened chicken breast on my mixed-greens salad (dressed with lime juice) -- but not much.  Anything that was in the spice mixture which might have been questionable, was in very small quantity.  In the morning i weigh in again, so the rest of today i'll be "good." 

Tomorrow, i might be kinda bad.  It'll be 28 days, not 30, but i MIGHT be adding something back into my diet.  My daughter and i have a date with "the girls" for sushi (sashimi and seaweed salad for me), and under the circumstances, a glass of white wine may well be unavoidable.  ;-)  Not promising -- not even close to "decided" -- but MAYBE....

Then again, being on-a-roll is not something that i'm willing to sacrifice lightly.  I've long considered it easier to be "perfect" than "moderate."  We'll see.

*CIAB = "crap in a box/bag"

Monday, January 30, 2012

more reflecting on effects of "paleostyle" living

As i progress in the first month of the Personal Paleo Code, different things start "popping out at me" -- gaining my attention as fewer diet-confounding symptoms are noticeable....

One thing happened several times over the course of the weekend, which RECENTLY hasn't been an issue with me:  forgetfulness!  I don't know how many times i was conversing with someone, and the word i wanted just would NOT come to mind.  This was historically something that would often annoy me about myself, even in early adulthood, but not something that's troubled me over the past few years.  On the drive between the living-history town and my daughter's house, i had plenty of time to ruminate on why this may have occurred over the weekend.

The stand-out "failure" i was guilty of, during the event, was late nights and early mornings.  The people i "play" with are VERY dear friends whom i see way too seldom.  When i finally get to enjoy their company, i try to make the most of the hours, and it's very easy for 2am to overtake me -- then, the next morning i may (as i did on Sunday) have to awaken at 6 in order to wait tables at breakfast.  Wednesday night (as i was preparing to leave home), Thursday night (sharing a room with my best friend), and Saturday night (as described above) i got WAAAYYY too little sleep.  Could that be why my brain just was not retrieving language-related information the way i expected it to?

On the other hand, i was proud of myself, the way i stuck to the dietary part of the Code.  As all my friends were downing beers, ciders, wine and "Pembertons" (Coke), i sipped innocently at my San-Pellegrino-with-a-sliver-of-lime pretty happily (it helped stave off the dehydration i frequently experience, too).   Bacon and eggs, nuts, a few fruits (more than my usual, in fact), steak and green beans were the mainstays of the weekend.  My energy and stamina were good.  I have to say, i DID leave a couple of supplements at home which i take semi-regularly -- i figured i'd be able to make up for their lack by eating things like oysters....  :-D

I'll make sure to get plenty of rest this week, and see how that improves the way my brain works (i'm even feeling more difficulty in expressing myself in writing).  I slept very well last night, so i'm thinking that one more long night's sleep OUGHT to catch me up properly.  If tomorrow's post isn't a bit more fluent ... well, i'm on the Gulf Coast and it's the end of January!  Where's me some seafood?!

Sunday, January 29, 2012


I lived through the weekend both literally and figuratively (my living-history characters didn't have anything unpleasant happen to them...).  :-)

One VERY interesting thing leapt out at me during my long drive south -- when i stopped for gas and "essentials" at the 5-hour mark and got out of the car, i had none of the stiffness i usually feel after sitting still so long.  NONE!  Completely amazing!  I used to step out of the car and have to flex myself before hobbling about my business, but not this time.  I moved around with normal agility.  Of all the improvements my paleo diet had made over three weeks, this was a delightful surprise.

Today, however, was a whole 'nother ball of wax.  All the walking, carrying things, and standing around in shoes of the period-correct sort left my legs full of sore muscles.  I also got a bit sleep-deprived, even though fun-deprivation got caught-up-with.  I can happily live with the trade-off!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

off into the wild

I've got a living history event this weekend -- YEA!  I'm heading out to Texas to play Old West with a bunch of friends.  This is one of those events that people outside the hobby almost never hear about, because these have no spectators and are not publicized; we "play" with and for only each other.  Imagine three to five dozen actors of various degrees of competence, dressed in appropriate period style, in a good-sized permanent town of more than a score of buildings.  We have a boarding house, a large barn, church, mercantile, three saloons, marshal's office with jail, two bunkhouses, various businesses and a few dwellings.

A lot of fun, and a lot of work.... 

I've spent a lot of the last two days in the kitchen, preparing paleo-appropriate food for the highway -- also the weekend's food, for when the meals provided won't be edible by those of us who eschew the "neolithic agents of disease."  Recipes out of the "Paleo Comfort Foods" cookbook feature prominently.

This event will be the only one i've ever attended while on the wagon -- THAT part is a grief!  I'll be drinking San Pelegrino water with a sliver of lime.  <Sigh>

Back soon!  Have a great weekend!  (I will.)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

three week point

...and the weigh-in was as bad as i expected it to be.  Up 1.2# from last week, and i've been PERFECT.  It's water -- there's no delusion about that part -- i can feel it all over my body.  It's still discouraging, though.

This is where temptation creeps in.  Not temptation to quit, but to TWEAK.  I considered having today as a water-fast day, or a fat-fast, and not recording my weight till tomorrow.  I considered dropping the coconut milk because of the big calorie load -- and i don't "believe in" calories!  (That's a figurative expression, because of course they exist....)  I was tempted to add in sucralose ahead of schedule, because i'm quite sure it has minimal impact on me; then i could drink tea instead of coffee (and i must have it sweet).

Time to get tough with myself.  I'm going downstairs and make myself a big bacon-and-egg scramble.  I'm not going to change a bloody thing.  The coconut is IN, and two full meals a day are IN, and sucralose, nightshades, etc. are OUT.  I'm GOING TO force myself to drink more water throughout the day (i thoroughly dislike water-chugging).  The bad numbers are going in the record, and with any kind of luck, next week's will seem far more impressive than they would have looked otherwise.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

cut and dried, and packed in a nutshell

Yesterday i read a blog which caused me to say to myself:  THIS IS IT.  The tag-team match is over, and Taubes' group wins.  I raise my cup of tea with coconut milk in it to Peter at Hyperlipid (i'd raise a glass of good French champagne, but it's not on my diet for at least another couple of weeks)! 

Check out this post, and this one, too -- Peter's own words are worth reading.  If you want the short version, it goes like this:  INSULIN DRIVES FAT STORAGE, ergo obesity.  Yes, you can screw with your fat cells' receptivity of insulin via the brain, but that doesn't mean the brain is the key organ of people's weight problems.

Don't want to gain weight, keep your fasting insulin low.  Keep your fasting insulin low by keeping your blood sugar low.  Keep your blood sugar low by being careful of what carbohydrates you eat, AND HOW YOU EAT THEM*.  If you once develop a metabolic handicap you'll have it for years, possibly to the end of your life, whether you lose weight or not.

Oh -- to fine-tune, make sure you don't damage your hypothalamus (brain end of the equation) with the common toxins of aspartame (Equal) or MSG (which hides under many different names on ingredient lists) -- that's one of the ways the researchers screwed with the rat brains. 

* Apparently, those who use the Kitavans as poster children for a high carbohydrate diet didn't tell the whole story of HOW the islanders eat:  one big meal a day.  They store the carb as fat, then live on the fat taken from storage for the next 23 hours.  [sarcasm alert]  Yeah -- that's similar to how people here eat high carb....

Monday, January 23, 2012

a little "woo" is not a bad thing

I failed to get myself some new clothes for the Chinese New Year, but i'm wearing a shirt i haven't had on in a couple of years -- can we let that count?  ;-)  I still plan to serve fish for dinner....

As part of the starting-anew concept, i also looked up some other new-yearish info.  In the 9 Star Ki* (a Japanese) system, next month will begin a new cycle too, a year of dynamic change (i THINK it's 8 Soil, but don't quote me).  Does that fit in well with your understanding of 2012 or what!  In numerology*, this is a Five year, a balancing point in the 9-year cycle, where decisions and changes are made, in order to send the next four years in the direction you want them to go.

Different esoteric systems look at different things to make predictions and recommendations.  I find that they work together very harmoniously, even though they don't coalesce to give a CONCRETE picture ("you will meet a tall handsome stranger...").  Astrology, of which i have a small amount of knowledge, also "works" -- when you get past the silly oversimplification of Sun Signs.  Here's a perfect example, from one of the better sites:  "Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, spent most of the past decade (or more) in incompatible signs – this was a macro indication that the world was unhappy."  The last two were 6 Metal and 7 Metal years in the 9 Star Ki system -- the world HAS had trouble with money (metal), now hasn't it?

If you're old enough to find this blog interesting, you probably remember the era of the hippie and talk of the Age of Aquarius -- know what?  The reason all that fizzled out back then was because they were too early; they anticipated their cosmic income.  The Age of Aquarius is NOW, and the changes happening (Occupy, anyone?) are going to take hippie idealism and eventually make it happen.

The forces which are fighting change are going to find it a losing battle, because the world CANNOT continue in the way it's going.  We all need to make changes in ourselves and the way we do things voluntarily, because if we're forced to do it by circumstances later, it'll be a lot more painful.

* a couple of favorite sites are 9starki.com and creativenumerology.com

Sunday, January 22, 2012


There's no one in the house right now, except me and the dog.  No television is on, and the radio in the kitchen is inaudible from here.

Since we live in the city, it's NEVER completely quiet; depending on the time of day there's the very frequent sound of vehicles driving up and down our street.  Often we hear helicopters overhead because there's a major hospital not far away, and police 'copters are not unusual, either.  Dogs bark from time to time.  During the day, this old neighborhood can echo with sounds of hammers and saws, because someone around is ALWAYS rehabbing.  There's the occasional siren, and sometimes the voices of people walking along the sidewalk.  Then, in warmer seasons when the windows are open, we can hear fireworks in the stadium when the Cards have scored a home run.  The sound of gunfire is not out of the question, late at night.

Do you ever sit in a room and just listen to the silence?  I feel like i'm one of the few people to do this regularly!  Often when i'm around others, they return to their homes from work or outings or whatever, and the first thing they do is turn on the television.  They cook and eat with voices constantly in the background; they get ready to leave the house with the news on or music playing; some sort of media player is plugged into their heads as they pad along on their treadmills; they turn on their automobiles, and the radio immediately begins to blat.  Some don't think they can go to sleep without a television's blue light flickering in their bedrooms....

The constant unremitting natter drives me CRAZY.  I have a sneaking suspicion that it strongly contributes to the stress most people suffer from, and they don't even realize it.  UNCEASING auditory input....  The human animal didn't evolve this way -- until the twentieth century it was almost impossible to have this kind of noise pollution (unless one lived in extremely crowded surroundings, with people coming and going at every hour of the day -- not terribly common, i should think).

Try a little experiment, and live a day without piping extraneous AUDIO into your atmosphere.  If the world around you gives you little to hear, try listening to your own thoughts -- hear what they have to say, and pay attention to their message.  You might learn something important.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

miscellany day

The blogosphere is comparatively quiet on weekends; nobody has written anything since yesterday that really compels me to put in my two-cents'-worth!  :-)  I guess this has to fall into the "no news is good news" file.

So i think this will be a "miscellaneous" day for me, a chance to mention little things that don't have enough meat on their bones to warrant a real post.

RANT WARNING!  Doncha HATE how easy it is for men to lose weight???  A certain paleo blogger who devotes a day a week to "success stories" has rather alienated me for that.  WAY too many of them tell a story of people who have no intrinsic problem with weight-loss bragging about their progress.  ["succulent raspberry" blown here -- how do you spell that?]  Oh, i'm very glad to hear when people with actual illnesses have their health resurrected through diet and supplementation, but DAMN....  My husband is no exception to the male weight-loss norm -- one week into a cleaner diet, and he lost more than twice as much as i was able to.  All he has to do is cut junk and alcohol from his diet, and the pounds melt away.  And if you think this is sour grapes, you're bloody well right.  :-P

Something i can be much more cheerful about:  if, like me, you miss cream in your coffee while on a strict paleo diet (i CAN drink my coffee black, however i don't enjoy it much), you do what's allowed and substitute coconut milk, right?  But though the taste isn't significantly impaired by it, the oily slick on top is a bit off-putting.  The day was saved for me when i remembered a "toy" i received for mothers' day last year, a milk-frother to go with my cappucino machine.  Voila -- a thick creamy sea of bubbles on top of my coffee again!  I'm happy!  Mine is a Nespresso, which either heats the milk or allows it to stay cold, and i LOVE it.  There are some frothers which look like a stick blender -- i assume they'd do the job fine, too.

Following links to old postings at one of my favorite blogsites the other day, i came upon a very interesting concept....  Everybody knows that children don't gravitate to eating vegetables they way they do to a lot of other foods, that you have to keep presenting them, frequently with butter- or cheese-bribery, before the kid caves in and "learns to like" them.  Perhaps this cajolery is an exercise in stupidity on our part.  See, the evolutionary reason for their dislike is solid:  what gives these strong-flavored vegetables the antioxidant properties (or should i say, hormetic properties) are actually TOXINS which their little bodies aren't yet able to handle well yet.  (Furthermore, having accumulated less lifestyle-induced oxidation than adults have, they probably don't NEED them, anyway.  A child eating meat, fruit, pleasant veggies and NO GRAINS has a significantly lower need for those strong-flavored things.)  "From a toddlers perspective eating veggies is suicidal."  :-)  I sure wish i'd known that 30-some years ago!

But there are a s*-load of things i wish i had known....  One of the many reasons why middle age is a MUCH better than it's given credit for!

Friday, January 20, 2012

hungry today!

I woke up with an appetite this morning, pretty much for the first time in MONTHS.  Drat.

Two possible reasons leap to mind, and i'm praying it's not this one:  my fat cells may be producing less leptin, and leptin (as we know) is the body's own appetite suppressant, the most important signal of energy repleteness.  I didn't think this reaction set in till much later in the weight-loss war....   :-(  When one loses fat weight, the cells get smaller and they secrete less of this precious hormone (because the fat mass is not inert flesh, as was the theory until very recently -- it is, in fact, your largest endocrine gland).  Producing lots of leptin tells the brain that there's enough energy storage on board, thank you very much, and we don't need more.

When the quantity produced by the fat cells significantly decreases, the brain gets the notion that something may be wrong with the food supply; if there's going to be a shortage, we'd better ramp up appetite and store more if possible.  THIS IS USUALLY WHY PEOPLE CAN'T KEEP DIETING INDEFINITELY -- they get unmanageably hungry, and the brain causes them to fixate on food.  It has nothing to do with willpower -- this is how animals are hard-wired.  In starvation (dieting), metabolic and brain changes are triggered, whose purpose in the world is Survival.  This is NONCONTROVERSIAL -- how do you think the better research scientists have kept themselves busy recently?  ;-)

The other most likely reason for my hunger this morning is the quality of my meals yesterday.  There are plenty of animal studies which show that what you eat today influences what you want to eat tomorrow.  I'm wondering now if the seafood chowder i had last night might have contained enough carbohydrates to start the blood-glucose-insulin-hypoglycemia-hunger roller-coaster.  If so, i'll have to be more careful with that dish in future, which would be a pity because it was REALLY GOOD.

Although i was still in ketosis when i checked first thing today, i'm hoping it's the latter, because that's easily fixed:  i eat plenty of good fats and moderate protein today and go light on the carbs, and my body happily continues burning fat and ketones as its main fuels.

Just in case, i'll knock back a couple of ounces of coconut oil later -- doesn't hurt to have the heavy-artillery of the weight-loss war on alert....

Thursday, January 19, 2012


I love the Old Farmer's Almanac; i used to run out and buy it every fall when the new issue went on the news-stands, but in our wonderful* electronic age i can access its information with less trouble and clutter**.  I also get their e-newsletter informing me of upcoming holidays, gardening advice, and recipe suggestions (largely useless for a low-carb "paleoid" like me).

OOOH!  am i responsible for coining a definitive term?  More excitement!  ;-)

The newsletter i received yesterday reminded me that this coming Monday is Chinese New Year; in their words:  "The new year is by far the most important festival of the Chinese lunar calendar. It is celebrated on the second new Moon after the winter solstice. The holiday is a time of renewal, with debts cleared, new clothes bought, shops and homes decorated, and families gathered for a reunion dinner. Chinese New Year is marked by fireworks, traditional lion dances, gift giving, and special foods."

I firmly believe in celebrating holidays, not least holidays which belong to other belief-systems and cultures.  Most people, throughout history and all over the world, tend to celebrate the same basic archetypes, like "light is good" and "starting over gives you a new lease on life."  Christmas, Diwali and Channukah (and, without doubt, countless more) are all "light" holidays.  Rosh Hashanah (with Yom Kippur coming right before) and the Chinese New Year -- well, you can guess....  "Other people's holidays" give you a chance to realize the idea intrinsic to the holiday, without all the emotional baggage associated with your own.

I'll not be trite and talk about the usual New Year stuff -- i'll concentrate on the celebratory aspect. 

Most people need more joy in their lives:  it's the antidote to stress.  What makes you happy?  What do you enjoy DOING?  Did you know that exercising in ways you don't like is stress-producing, and thus less effective than something you like?  Did you know that exerting will-power in dieting is also stressful?

So FIND some joy!  If your old/usual activities are tiresome and no longer exciting, try new things till one "clicks." Maybe you need a challenge.  That's why i chose the new activity i did, because i knew it was outside my native skill-set.  It makes me move (exercise) in a way that i have to THINK about -- therefore, it isn't mindless and boring, and distracts me from the amount of energy i'm exerting.  And my instructor and fellow-students are friendly, supportive, FUN ladies -- the kind of people who don't bring you down.

Monday is the Chinese New Year -- celebrate it!  I'm going to buy myself some new clothes, settle (emotional) debts (to myself), and find some traditional dishes that work with my PPC diet options.  Too bad i'll have to miss the lion dance....

Happy Year of the Water Dragon, everyone!

*i mean this in the truly literal sense: full of wonders!  :-)
**confessing "sins" again -- there are piles of books on most of the horizontal surfaces of my house.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

two-week progress point and a digression

I had a good scale reading today -- that was certainly a mood-upper -- 7.5 pounds lost in two weeks.  My measurements haven't improved much (only waist and hip are recorded in the PPC) -- in fact, the RATIO has gone the wrong way a little.  Just shows, i lose fat off my backside faster than off my middle.  A little disappointingly, my (subjective) overall health improvement score is a flatline; perhaps a 0-3 reporting range is too narrow for small-but-perceptible changes?

But my progress isn't what's gotten me excited this morning.  I was just reading the blogs that have been updated since i stopped reading last night, and found something noteworthy from Dr. Sharma (linked on the right side of this page):  a colleague of his, also lecturing at a special event, explained the weight-defending homeostatic system in a way that ACTUALLY MAKES SENSE. 

The argument goes, of course, that in pre-industrial ages, fat storage was valuable for sustenance in times of famine.  (It's also valuable in illness --perhaps you've noticed, when you're feverish, and you don't really feel like eating ordinary fare, you weigh less when you get better.  Problem is these days, sickness is frequently a time when people eat anyway -- treats like ice-cream and snacks!)  So the hedonic system encouraged our ancestors to pig out when they came across something like fruit, which would pack on the pounds in fall, so they could "eat" their own fat tissue all winter when food would be harder to come-by.

Dr. Colmers explains that the weight-defending homeostatic system has been at work all our lives, as we go from infant to child to adolescent to adult, making sure we don't slip backward into a pathological wasting-away of what we so arduously gained (think about primitive people, here -- gaining is hardly arduous in Western society).  It's logical to me, NOW.  Some people explain a HELL of a lot better than other people.

I never thought the idea of the body defending an ever-increasing fat mass to be particularly logical.  Oh yes, i know about leptin-resistance: that contributes, without a doubt.  Is it alone enough to tip the scale (pardon the pun) toward detrimental quantities of fat gain, or does mitochondrial inflexibility start now?  (Does this work the same way with bodybuilders who add freakish quantities of muscle?)  I'm going to have to review what i've read about these points....

Currently, the Drs. Jaminet are formulating an hypothesis on quality of lean tissue being the goal of the brain's drive to keep us big or make us bigger.  I'm extremely eager to see what their ultimate argument will be.

So much information out there, and lots of mental collating to do.  "We" know so much, and yet average people, even doctors, know so little.  Wow....

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

what's working

This day is the last of my second week on the PPC, and the diet is flowing in a comfortable groove.  Hunger has not been any kind of problem, and urges to eat forbidden things have been completely manageable.

I wake up generally alert (not brain-foggy), i pee, weigh myself, and go make a cup of coffee.  The progress has been steady, the only "complication" being the inflammation radiating from my right knee (the one i injured a half-dozen years ago) after the unusual stress i gave it last Wednesday.  I may have to re-think that dance class.... 

On the other hand, THE KNEE PAINS ME LESS THAN IT USED TO.  How THAT is happening is an intriguing puzzlement.  Is it merely diet-related (cutting irritants that had been on my menu list before), or could the strengthening of the muscles surrounding it (the tabata sprints on the stationary bicycle) have something to do with stabilizing the joint?  Can't tell you -- wish i could!  My original instinct, to wait till weight loss stalled before adding in exercise, was probably the right decision, but it's too late now -- i'll have another chance to see what happens in Step 2, when i add back some of the foods i eliminated.

I already knew enough to eat most of my carbs for dinner rather than load up at breakfast -- the latter helped me gain a few pounds last summer.  By the way:  the very word "breakfast" is not used as it once was, and i feel a need to point out a few things!  :-)  Breaking one's fast doesn't mean eating within a short period of time after waking -- i think we have cereal commercials to blame for the confusion.  Break-fasting, etymologically, is eating for the first time after a period of abstention, which for most people is after their night's sleep.  Okay?  Make sense?  So the old saw "breakfast is the most important meal of the day" may be taken from the rubbish-heap and reanalyzed for importance -- for people who do LOOOOONG fasts, there's no doubt that the first meal they eat after it is crucial.

But i digress -- i'm a life-long linguaphile, and hate sloppy mis-use (don't get me started on "goes" and "says"...). 

What works!?  :-)  A high-fat-and-protein breakfast, WHEN I'M PROPERLY HUNGRY, is what works for me.  Having my husband around is a difficulty (sorry, baby) when it comes to this point, because he's primed for eating at "mealtimes" rather than "by his stomach" -- or perhaps he just gets hungry sooner than i do!  It's easy to get out of the pattern of "eating to hunger," but it's important for MY body.  Bacon and eggs (or something with a comparable nutritional profile) will stick to my ribs for HOURS.  There have been days when all i wanted after it was a snack before bed.

You see, when your body is accustomed to functioning on fats and ketones, and if you have excess body fat, once your dietary energy has been burnt off your cells seamlessly move to burn stored energy instead.  Hunger isn't about an empty stomach -- it's about fuel usage and accessibility.  For a comprehensive look at why we get hungry, J Stanton's series of articles ought to receive a Pulitzer prize!

After breaking my fast, i wait until my meal has cleared my stomach, then go for the walk/tabata sprints, depending on which i did yesterday -- anything which challenges your muscles (sprints) shouldn't be done EVERY day; lack of rest (rest is when the tissues recuperate and get built up again, stronger than ever) is why all those fit 30-somethings keel over from heart attacks while out running, you know.  Add to the mitochondria-enlivening and neurotransmitter-encouraging effects of exercise, the appetite suppression of it, and you've got something worth getting off your backside for.  (Pardon the grammer here -- that sentence was aiming for impact.)

When eventually hungry again, i finally indulge in a dinner with judicious quantities of carbohydrates.  This plan is what my body responds to -- yours may vary, but if you're doing it differently and it's not working for you for weight loss, reconsideration might be in order.  There's a good rodent study supporting the efficacy of late-day carb intake, but rodent studies should ALWAYS be accepted with a grain of salt -- there are significant differences in their little metabolisms.

During the course of the day, i take various supplements.  Some are taken with meals and some on an empty stomach; some are scrupulously taken separately and others together.  A lot of minerals, particularly, seem to compete for receptors and absorption, so to me, HOW can a single multivitamin give an across-the-board good result?  The things i take are influenced by my particular health challenges, so they're not to be recommended universally -- and it's taken YEARS of experimentation to reach the balance that seems correct.  If your body is undamaged, you may not need supplements at all.

As i said in earlier posts, i'm sharing what works for this middle-aged body in hopes that some other woman may find it instructive.  With all the contradictory advice out there, people often have no idea what might help them.  The point here is, THIS IS NOT HYPOTHESIS, or even theory -- this IS WORKING RIGHT NOW on my perimenopausal, thyroid-challenged, clinically-overweight (bmi 28) body.  This is the most effective regimen i've ever found.

Monday, January 16, 2012

further enlightenment

I got a flash of insight this morning as i was finishing my first cup of coffee:  although fulfilling the "hot caffeinated beverage" function for which it's intended, coffee without heavy cream is much less of a pleasure-delivery system than it used to be.

Now, "duh" is the expected response to a statement like that.  If i stopped my analysis there, this would be the most banal post i could possibly write, but the way my mind works, it's the subtle ramifications that i find most intriguing.  I'm attracted to the tiny rills which swell the mighty river.

Two reactions will probably inhibit a lot of people who might otherwise try this dietary scheme:  the "i can't give up grains" response, and the "but i always ... because it relaxes/invigorates/pleasures me."  The problems are addiction, habit, and fear of loss of pleasure.  Been there.

The first time i specifically banished grains from my diet was when i started Atkins, about 8 years ago.  I don't specifically remember it being all that difficult, though i sorely missed a few foods which had been staples when i suffered under the low-fat paradigm.  But on the occasions since then, when i allowed myself to indulge in bread, rice, or oatmeal, i clearly felt the pull of such foods -- the urge to continue eating, scarfing them down, despite the lack of actual HUNGER.  When my husband was working in New Orleans ... OH MY GOD ... the wonderful french bread you could buy for a SONG at Croissant D'Or....

Some foods are physically as well as psychologically addictive.  Treat them as the evil seducers they are -- they want to convince you that it's all about innocent pleasures whose only downside is disapproval by puritanical anti-hedonists.  They're lying.  The downside is disease and misery.

Various blogs (and the recent book "Wheat Belly") explain why, with their discussions of the addictive properties of grains.  You don't notice it so much when it's a part of your everyday diet, but quit for a while and reintroduce -- WOW.  My name is Tess, and i'm an addict.  I won't embarrass myself by getting technical with talk of opioid receptors and endocannabinoids, but i'll willingly confess to being their thrall.  Just recently, during the holiday season, i allowed myself a treat in the form of "party mix" made with only rice chex and nuts, and the usual butter/spice topping.  i rationed my servings, but after the butter-rice combination hit my digestive tract, i felt the urge to stuff my maw like Cookie Monster!  Butter and vegetables don't have QUITE that strong an appeal.

A HUGE number of people actually exhibit signs of panic when they're asked to give up bread and cereals.  (Note to self:  add "auto-hypnosis" to "addiction" and "habit" above....)  If they believe they can't give up these things, they're very likely to saboutage themselves.  They're addicted, and the best thing they can do is go cold-turkey.  Eat pre-cooked mini-quiches for breakfast, and wrap your sandwich in leaf-lettuce rather than bread; order restaurant sandwiches and hold the bun -- it's not that hard to substitute.

Enter, "habit."  That glorious first cup of coffee of the morning, as a vehicle for cream ingestion ... i did it every day, and didn't think about it, because cream is "legal" in low-carb diets.  I expected to want it much more than i do, now that i've gotten used to coconut milk.  I expected cheese and wine to elicit cravings, because i love them and used them often.  I DIDN'T.  When i got back from taking my husband to the airport last night, i wanted to sit down with a cocktail; a month ago, i would have done just that.  But i didn't CRAVE it (because these are not physiological NEEDS) -- it was easy to resist.  I don't NEED all these things i consumed regularly, before.  I hardly miss them at all.

I suspect that "fear of loss of pleasure" may be a very strong motivation to continue eating things we shouldn't.  To get back to the cream and wine as exemplars:  i LOVE cream, and there's no reason from a low-carb point of view, why i shouldn't allow myself to enjoy it ... UNLESS it causes physiological effects which i'm significantly better without.  The ONLY WAY i'll ever learn exactly what these effects may be is to strictly CUT THEM OUT of my diet.  For the space of a month???  If this is the hardest thing i'll every do, i lead a charmed existence!  Hell, gestating a baby makes this look like dancing around the maypole.  The sheer pleasure of being able to walk around with less pain and more agility makes the "pain" of giving up "neolithic agents of disease" laughable.

Think about it.  Think of all the things you've dreaded doing, then found it wasn't such a big deal when you actually started.  I've discovered that being "perfect" on the PPC is MUCH easier than i ever anticipated.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

more esoterica

Most mornings, i do my reading and then i know exactly what i want to write about -- frequently, a reflection upon the conclusions i've drawn from my experience vs various postings.  Today, despite having a list of topics i'd like to write on eventually, i'm less inspired.  I'm feeling philosophical rather than tigerish (mentally speaking).

My husband has the television on in another room, and is watching programs of the political/business sort; i can't help but hear snatches of what various people have to say (grrrr).  Me, i hate that sort of thing.  It brings to clear focus what kind of idiocy is in the world, "leading" us.  The only thing i do regularly which is at all analogous to his practice, is reading "news" articles on MSN and other services which i see when logging in and out of email accounts.

"News" pisses me off -- it's so artificial.  Instead of important things going on in the world, we hear about entertainment, fifteen-minutes-of-famers, and lifestyle trends.  When it comes to the "nightly news" on broadcast television (which i accidentally hear when i'm around my mother for any amount of time), i find that it is presented by "personalities" so vapid, they make my head ache.  Their grammar is atrocious, and when they make their idle chatter i am reminded that almost 50% of the world has below-average IQ.  ;-)

A number of paleo bloggers and commenters have frankly declared that one of their methods of lowering chronic stress is to unplug from all of this.  I don't blame them -- it's tempting to put my fingers in my ears and say "lalalalala" but it concurrently makes me feel uneasy not to know how bad the worst is, in the world in which i live.  "Know your enemy."

Then there's facebook:  i got so many invitations, a year or two ago, that i started using it.  I love being able to keep in touch with friends i had when i lived in different places but the venue encourages a LOT of BS.  I've found that a number of people, whom i like "to their faces," are completely unbearable in print.  And don't get me started about the games....

I have worked out a few strategies to stay informed and still lower the stress of it all. Seems to me, the best place to read about current events is in a foreign newspaper (London's "The Times" is a good one, as was Mexico City's "The News" when i last accessed it -- it's been awhile). Overseas, journalists are more likely to call a spade a spade in American events, and you will certainly learn more about the rest of the planet. 

On the internet front (specifically FB), i block the posts of those who only present sensationalist nonsense.  Just say no. 

These are toxic people who poison your spirit; they encourage one's worst emotions and reactions, drain one's energy and deplete one's positive feelings like self-confidence, cheerfulness, optimism, JOY.  People like this, it would be best just to excise them from one's life like a tumor, but sometimes it's almost impossible to do so.  At very least, keep them at arm's-length, emotionally speaking.  Don't let them or their message in; don't keep giving them more chances because they'll just wound you again and again.  Surround yourself, as best you can, with people and ideas that are uplifting and love-inspiring.

The atmosphere of miserable, hateful, or ill-principled jerks will make you a lesser person, but the proximity of truly good people will improve you -- these characteristics are contagious.  Which "bug" would you rather catch?

Saturday, January 14, 2012

hubby joins in

I couldn't be more pleased!  When i had the opportunity to fully describe what i'm doing, my husband actually volunteered to try it, too!

When i described all the things i'm NOT eating, he lost some enthusiasm.  However, i explained why it's important to get any conceivably problematic food out of the diet so one can systematically reintroduce them and gauge their impact.  I think the engineer in him found this reasonable.

So off we go -- together!  :-D  I have no doubt, he'll improve so fast that he'll leave me in the dust; that's happened on diets before now.  Since he has further to go, i MIGHT be able to reach my goal first -- that will be an incentive to keep the spurs on myself!

p.s. -- i'm still nightshade-free.  i decided to have the bourguignonne yesterday, then found that the two potatoes i had left had passed the point of no return.  search turned up some jerusalem artichoke (sunchoke) in the basement refrigerator, so i cut them in similar-sized pieces, tossed them in olive oil and treated them as oven-fries.  very tasty, but methane-producing....

Friday, January 13, 2012

friday the 13th

EEEK!  the dog woke me before 6:00 with an eerie howl in his sleep, and when i stepped on the bathroom scale, i was a pound up from Wednesday (i KNEW there was some inflammatory action going on after that dance class, which equals water weight gain, in me).  I guess the best thing to do would be to huddle in bed, buried under the covers, till it's over....

But that ain't gonna happen.  When i finish my coffee-drinking, i'm going upstairs to do those tabata sprints i promised myself yesterday, on the stationary bicycle (easier on the once-injured knee).  Then i'll go downstairs and defrost and start cooking for the weekend -- oh, and update the honey-do list, because my husband will be back from his business trip this afternoon.  He's always happier when he feels needed and has lots to keep him busy.

Tonight i think it'll be the chicken breasts with mushroom sauce and creamed spinach, which he flagged in my "Paleo Comfort Foods" cookbook (by the Mayfields -- i LOVE it).  Tomorrow, boeuf bourguignonne with steamed potatoes; last night i decided i probably wouldn't have the same problem i had with the chilis, even though they're both nightshades.  I will leave out the tomato paste, however -- maybe add a little tamarind paste instead?  Hmmmm....

:-)  For the record, Friday the 13th has never meant a thing to me; just something to have fun with.  A lot of superstitions seem to have a basis in reality, and others are mere nonsense.  Not walking under ladders, for example, sounds like a very good idea, as well as not getting upset about breaking mirrors (they're cheaper than they used to be).  I do believe in astrology, though, when you get past simple sun-signs....

Thursday, January 12, 2012

new week, new challenges

One of the reasons i undertook this blog was inspiration from the (short, free ebook), "The Flinch" to cultivate talents/skills which i have written -- or shrugged -- off in the past.  Consequently to that, i just began exploring something i have a life-long lack of aptitude for:  DANCE.

I'm no fan of all the recent television programs featuring this art/sport, although i get a great deal of pleasure and feel a lot of admiration when watching a fine performance.  I enjoy evenings out at the ballet.  Once i even got to see Baryshnikov, live.  :-)  Back in my fencing days, i took an adults' class in "ballet" (well, ballet-inspired conditioning, led by a prominent local dance teacher) in an effort to get balance for my body, since fencing is notoriously asymmetric.  My wind and flexibility definitely improved, but i became no better dancer as a result.

So when that little devil on my shoulder hinted that, despite not wanting to indulge "the flinch," i might hesitate to enter a new realm of endeavor that featured this bugaboo, naturally i said "screw dat" and went searching for a school.  The voice of one of my living-history personae lept to the aforementioned shoulder, kicked the devil overboard, and made a supportive suggestion:  Irish dance.  She wants to learn to jig.  ;-)

Last night, i attended the first class.  The atmosphere was friendly and encouraging, and the instructor WELL-versed in teaching adults as well as smaller fry.  We plunged right into learning basic steps.  Knowing how out-of-condition i am, i took it easy and therefore have barely any aches today, but a little inflammation.  The PPC, being an anti-inflammatory regimen, will sure be a help here!  I'll continue to take it easy today, with a little stretching and flexing -- maybe, too, do a few yoga moves that seem like they'd be helpful.

Tomorrow i start the Tabata sprints!  I was putting off beginning to do them regularly, in anticipation that my weight loss won't continue this well very long.  EVERYBODY knows that exercise makes a difference in metabolic support and mitochondrial rehabilitation, even though it sucks for actual weight loss.  I WAS saving the heavy artillery for when my footsoldiers (diet) started to get tired.  The latter are still battling steadily, but they're going to get reinforcement anyway.

We'll see how this progresses!  No doubt, it's going to be a challenge.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

one week in, impressive progress

I woke early this morning, eager to enter my first week's results in the PPC's progress tracking tool.  ...Earlier than i should, in fact -- i sat up WAY too late last night, writing (which is also going well, but i won't go into it here).

I couldn't be more pleased with my progress.  I'm not eating a significant difference in number of calories, but a few staples of my ordinary diet have been pulled from under me by the strictness of this first phase of the Personal Paleo Code.  Generous amounts of heavy cream and butter, and phases of home-made yogurt use were customary with me.  Wine with meals, and the occasional not-sugary cocktail also fit into my idea of what the civilized bohemian should be drinking.  I even decided it would be wise to cut the nightshades.  Cheese, cream cheese, rice, stevia in my coffee, a couple of sucralose-sweetened sodas per week -- all banished.  About four and a half pounds of "ugly fat"* have also been banished.  In only one week.

Did i mention, i'm hypothyroid?  It's BLOODY hard for me to lose weight, though when i first started Atkins i had this same sort of success.  Trouble is, once you dump the worst dietary offenders (white flour, sugar, fruit juices) ... where do you go from there?  Eliminating seed oils, when i first discovered paleo, and balancing omegas 3 and 6 only take you so far.  Tweaking vitamin/mineral intakes, ditto.  Add to that, the fact that i'm now considered to be "of a certain age," and no matter what anyone tells you about it being natural to get dumpy now, it's still not a good thing to do, for many reasons.

One gets in a pattern of eating "permissible" low-carb/paleo foods.  Until and unless you steel yourself into a month of puritanical eating, you'll never know exactly which food is doing what to you.  I can tell you, IT'S WORTH IT.  It's a social pain-in-the-ass, and i'm lucky that my husband's business-trip was of long enough duration for me to be able to concentrate most of my attention on what i'm doing.  ...Wait, maybe THAT had something to do with the stress-snacking urge i suffered the other day.  Did the electrical outage distract me from my iron-backbone concentration?  If so, it goes to show what conditioned behavior patterns do to you -- one major distraction, and it's back down the slippery slide....

Well, i have another 3+ weeks before i can even THINK of adding in some of my deletions.  (Toward the end of that time, i have a major social event coming up; gotta consider it a challenge -- even a DARE -- and ramp up my "stubbornness response" to see it through.)  The heady progress i've made this week won't last, i'm not fostering delusions about that.  But the remaining signs of "physical degeneration" i've experienced, like my once-injured knee's tendency to arthritis pain, SHOULD also improve ... and i've yet to add in the REGULAR tabata sprints on the stationary bicycle.

"Ain't no stoppin' us now!"

*  Reference to a very old joke:  "wanna get rid of that ugly fat?  divorce him!"  Or "her", i guess.  :-)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

half a day off

No, i didn't take a day off from the Personal Paleo Code -- that would have meant that i wasted almost a whole week!  :-)  I'm still being good....

But i did have to take some time off from my usual pursuits because my neighborhood had a power outage and -- gasp -- i had no internet, no movies, and limited battery power.  At 7:30 last night things suddenly went dark, and although they expected electrical service to be resumed at about 10, it wasn't.  Not till midday, today.

The really peculiar thing to happen, though, was that i suddenly wanted to SNACK!  Now, i'm not a snacker anymore.  When i was doing Atkins (converted from the SAD), i reveled in the opportunity to eat nuts and cheese, deviled eggs, that sort of thing -- what luxury!  I occasionally used the Advantage bars, but mostly when i was in a hurry or on the highway.  Then, a couple of years ago i discovered the paleo world, and hey, that was great, too.  All i had to do was dump a very few "evil" things i was eating which had been okay on run-of-the-mill low-carb.  I developed recipes for "cleaner" snack bars, played with nut flours, fine-tuned my supplement-taking: that sort of thing.  Eventually, however, nutrition caught up with me (especially after reading "The Perfect Health Diet"), and i no longer wanted to eat between meals.  In fact, all of the information i'd read on intermittent fasting encouraged me to dump breakfast or supper (whichever meal i just wasn't hungry for).  WOW.  Freedom.  It's easy to see why i didn't NEED to eat:  once one starts burning fat as one's principle fuel (and not lacking micronutrients), the body's energy desires are easily met by what's in storage.

Then came last night....  WHY, with my belly still busy with the duck breast and sour cherries (modified from the wonderful "Nourishing Traditions" cookbook), was i tempted?  I didn't succumb, but it puzzled me.

Speculation is all i have, here.  Even though i was minimally inconvenienced, was it a stress reaction?  In the past, insane traffic has been known to make me crave carbs or alcohol.  But it doesn't make a lot of sense that i'd be stressed simply because i was obliged to light the oil lamp that was already at my elbow, and swap the computer chat with my out-of-town husband for an actual BOOK.  I'm a reenactor, for heaven's sake -- i can do ANYTHING non-electrically, and i have the tools for it, too.  I wasn't afraid the stuff in the fridge would rot, i wasn't missing a television program, i didn't fear the zombie apocalypse, nothing.

Maybe it was conditioning.  Evening, candlelight....  Before i started the PPC, i would have had a glass of wine or a cocktail at hand, and all the cheese and nuts (and even some home-made salmon pinwheels) downstairs in the kitchen are very enticing. 

I don't know.  Anyway, i just downed the rest of my glass of water containing a generous lime wedge, refilled it, told myself that i was being silly, and went back to my reading.

But i'm still puzzled.  Suggestions?

Monday, January 9, 2012


One of the things that influenced me to start blogging was my own need to find information about what dietary "tricks" work for people like me.  All the world knows, there is NO dearth of nutritional advice to be had!  What's the good of standard dietary recommendations, though, which have obviously encouraged the obesity epidemic?  Of plans which have a 95% failure rate?  Of strategies which show, upon analysis, 99% recidivism?

What good to me is the regimen which a 25-year-old male gym-rat finds effective?  Or even a 55-year-old male gym-rat?  Young women's experiences aren't much more helpful -- these things were great when i was 30, but don't work well any more.

I did what any modern seeker does:  i googled it.  "Middle-aged woman weight loss low-carb paleo blog" brought up a number of websites for me to check out, but only one of them resonated (hi, Steph!).  She's more than a decade younger than i, but i think we have more in common than not.  Reading what she has to say has been instructive and uplifting.  I want to pay forward with any of my experiences that can possibly be of help to another person in analogous circumstances.

Most people can agree that context matters.  Not only do other baby-boomers have a more similar nutritional background to mine (than someone much younger), but they're at a comparable hormonal place, AND a great many of them will have tried to lose weight over the last quarter-century.  It's not a stretch of the imagination to think that, what they have experienced and succeeded with is more likely to be useful to me than the theoretical knowledge of someone just out of college.

"If you are wounded, look for a man with scars."  I don't guarantee i got the quote quite right -- i haven't seen that episode of Dr Who in a long time -- but the concept made an impression on me.  If one has a problem, someone who has also dealt with the problem (maybe even solved it) is my first choice for advice.

There are LOTS of good paleo/primal/ancestral websites to read, so if you have limited time so spend on them, how do you choose which ones to follow?  You won't agree with ANY of them all the time!  Some aren't as well-written, though the content may be outstanding, and some which are highly readable and entertaining don't offer information that is really usable.  Try a lot of them; frequently, the websites THEY link to are the most valuable thing on the page.

Above all, choose your go-to sites for applicability.  If their philosophy gibes with your experience, you're bound to benefit more from their recommendations than from those of the theoreticians, promoting the hypothesis-du-jour.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Sunday is a good day to bring up spirituality

All of the paleo/ancestral bloggers who pride themselves on their science-based writings seem to maintain a strong stance against "woo."  This is an expression designed to pour scorn on anything that hints of the esoteric, something which could be true but is unprovable by means of a clinical trial -- or at least a mathematical model.  If you can't measure it, it ain't there.

Bullshit.  I won't even bother to list things that we couldn't measure a few years ago.

I'm neither impressed nor bullied into yea-saying by all the "scientific disbelief" (i watched "Shanghai Express" again last night...), nor the contempt of the spirituality-bashers whose only instruction was amongst the kind of fundamentalist groups which can quote the entire bible and UNDERSTAND not one word of it.  in fact, the bible is mostly sociology, not spirituality; my favorite reading in that department is Patanjali.

The notion of "God" as some old white guy with a beard, crowned and sitting on a cloud, IS bullshit -- no argument there.  Yes, i do realize that this vision was put forth in the middle ages to educate the illiterate and put an imaginable form to that which is formless.  And alternatively, expressing it as "something out there" is a little on the wishy-washy side; you don't want to upset your mother who is a pious ____ (enter denomination of choice), even though you think she's completely deluded -- but what the heck, she doesn't have too many years left, and if it makes her happy....

I've seen WAY too much in my 56 years to believe that it's all "material."  From personal experience, i KNOW that "there are more things in heaven and earth ... than are dreamt of in your philosophy."  "Evidence-based" isn't the same as "science-based." 

I'm not trying to convince you, though -- you can believe any ol' thing you want, i really don't give a damn....

...Unless you try to tell ME what I should believe -- that's when we bring out the big guns (metaphorically speaking).  I can quote till the cows come home.  Wait -- i've already done that.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

forward again, and backward in a different way

Still being "perfect", and my weight is down from the original number by 2.4# -- yes!  :-)  After dinner last night, though, i had my first craving;  i REALLY  wanted to put cream in a cup of  decaf for dessert.  I settled for a big spoonful of coconut butter instead.  It was the fat my body wanted, more than the lovely, creamy, sweet dairy product, i'm sure -- filet mignon is just too darned lean, but that's what my appetite called for.  I cooked the parsnip as i would Carrots Vichy, but without the added sweetener, and ALMOST added some ghee, but restrained myself.  Yum.

I may start following the recommendation of the author of "The Shangri-La Diet," and take a couple of tablespoons of bland-flavored oil a day, in place of my beloved cream.  I'm STILL deeply doubtful of his rationale, and i'm thoroughly convinced that some of his reasoning is flawed, but it seems to work for a lot of people. 

Often, tried-and-true techniques work for reasons that we don't understand yet.  Much as modern science "knows," there are a few glitches in how it filters down to everyday life, and it has also gotten to the point that there's SO MUCH known, that a lot of good stuff has been forgotten in favor of the latest discovery or refinement.

One of my favorite bloggers, Chris Masterjohn, presented us with a stunning article yesterday, discussing how the body can manufacture glucose from fatty acids, that mainstream textbooks declare this to be impossible, and that this information has been around for more than half a CENTURY and is absolutely undeniable -- and largely disregarded.  This has impact on low-carb eaters and the compromises they make.  Mind you, most of the scientific world is convinced that what's in a textbook HAS to be true....

 (Chris Kresser also dug up some sound, old information on choline, http://chriskresser.com/why-you-should-eat-more-not-less-cholesterol that's going to affect diet in my household!) 

I have an OLD diet book that belonged to my grandmother, and in my younger days of fighting weight gain i read it and tried it.  Apparently, it was one of the earliest low-carbohydrate diets to achieve a good deal of popularity, spread through a radio show in the 1930s.  Dr. Victor Lindlahr, "Eat and Reduce"!  :-)  He had some interesting tricks (like a recommendation to hang around your house naked, to speed metabolism), but it was principally a very low calorie, low fat diet, and therefore unsustainable.  He mentions the actual first low-carb diet book author, William Banting, but gets the "facts" wrong.

So when i get on an everything-old-is-new-again kick -- and i can almost promise that i will -- there's a reason for it.  Besides, i'm a reenactor and living-historian, too.

Friday, January 6, 2012

half a step back

At least, now i know that i should be avoiding nightshades.

Yesterday i made a delicious stew that included poblano pepper, tomatillos, and various chili powders, but my gut didn't like it as well as my tastebuds did.  Bloating, insomnia, sinus issues and headache were the eventual reward.  I won't be doing that again any time soon.  Today's main meal will be a nice simple beefsteak and parsnips; maybe i'll breakfast on a plantain i have in the fridge, fried up in coconut oil.

I should have suspected a nightshade sensitivity, even though the symptoms were never this obvious before.  My mother CRAVES potatoes, and frequently gets a headache after eating chips and salsa; you and i learned way back in the Atkins days that cravings frequently indicate an unhealthy relationship to a particular foodstuff -- allergy or addiction (or both).

So there will be NO more tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, potatoes, chili powder, paprika or tobacco this month.  At least the last one is easy to forgo.

Tomorrow i should be willing to step on the scales again.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

first step accomplished

Down 0.8# from yesterday.  And i WAS perfect -- as far as food and drink were concerned.  :-)

I got into a head-butting contest with a facebook friend, though.  I actually have my account set up so that i don't have to see the inane posts he puts on his own wall, but when he chooses to post on mine, i can count on my blood-pressure rising....  The conflict is always political. 

It has occurred to me that the opposite of Progressive is REGRESSIVE.

This hasn't been a digression from the purpose of my newborn blog.  Younger people, both male and female, won't relate unless they know a bit about the byways of history.  Older women will, and a lot of older men won't care.  Do you realize that women in this country have another dozen years to go before they can celebrate the centennial of being able to vote?  My daughter surely takes it for granted, but were my grandmother still around, she could tell of her 21st birthday coming around, with no promise that she'd ever have a word in who represented her interests in government.

Talk about "taxation without representation".... 

...Leading back to the point!  Considering how many of us there are, and how much monetary power we command, middle-aged-and-older women frequently get short shrift in the political world.  We need to empower ourselves, because heaven knows, nobody will do it for us. 

Part of this is taking charge of our health and well-being.  We have been thoroughly let down by the medical profession.  Our bodies are poisoned daily by things in the air and water which we can't avoid, and a doctor's first response to our concern is to write a prescription for an antidepressant.  Depressing, indeed.

We'll be told that fluoride is good for us (did you know, the Nazis contemplated putting it in the water supply to make their people more docile?);  told that certain foodstuffs, which are demonstrably deleterious, are the height of good nutrition; that pharmaceuticals which have a list of side-effects as long as your arm, are a good choice to take to stifle some minor symptom.  It's all WRONG.

I know a lot of people who get their nutritional advice from television commercials and articles in cheesy magazines.  PLEASE, for the love of all the gods at once, don't be one of them!

I don't expect busy modern people to spend as much time reading up on SOUND nutritional information as i can, and i don't expect anyone to take my word for it.  Check out some of the links on the right side of this page -- these people actually read the whole "study," not just the press release.  (i recommend starting with PerfectHealthDiet.com)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

here. NOW.

Well, i did it!  Although i don't believe in new years' resolutions, I'm committing to a "path", my journey for ... as long as i bloody well feel like it!  Correction -- as long as i think it holds promise.  :-)

Lots of spurs led me here, not least of which was the book i began reading last night, The Flinch, by Julien Smith (thank you for introducing it, Richard!).  I realize how much my life has been formed by "pain avoidance".  My biggest character fault, i believe, is a lack of self-confidence, keeping me from leaping whole-heartedly into a lot of different things, from hobbies to life-significant pursuits.  I won't go into details about how i think i LOST said confidence....

Suffice it to say, i'm ready to leap NOW.  This blog is part of it.  Another part is, i started Chris Kresser's Personal Paleo Code program this morning.  I'm going to be PERFECT for a solid month.  No dairy, no liquor, no soda....  I suspect that cheese will call my name the loudest.

So i'm committing myself publicly, here.  NOW.