Over the past few weeks, I’ve been contemplating making some changes to my blog. My blog posts have mainly been about recipes, with a few beauty product reviews and travel posts mixed in. I have to confess that while I love to cook, I’ve discovered that I really don’t enjoy writing the recipe posts very much.
Some of my favorite posts that I have written have been about places that I’ve traveled to or visited. I also have a passion for healthy living and all that entails. So, I’ve decided that I wanted to take Healthier Dishes blog more in that direction. If you aren’t happy about what you’re writing about, what’s the point?
I never could come up with a good tagline for my blog before, but I finally came up with one recently. I want to have a healthier lifestyle, and especially help my husband to be healthier, so I thought it was a fitting tagline. I do feel a little guilty because I haven’t done enough to make sure that we were eating as healthy as possible. When I did cook, we had pretty healthy meals, but fast food was picked up way more often than it should have been.
I will disclose that one of the reasons that I decided to make this change has to do with some recent lab test results that my husband got. They weren’t horrible, but they weren’t great. Good cholesterol was low, bad cholesterol was high, glucose was high, and triglycerides were high. He also has hypothyroidism, which was diagnosed several years ago. Basically, the test results really kind of woke me up. We needed to make some major changes.
There is a family history of diabetes on both sides of our family, and I also have PCOS, so I have a higher risk of getting it in addition to that. I would much rather make the changes to our diet now, than be forced to later down the road.
I thought this fortune that I got last night was fitting for our new lifestyle.
Investing a little time and money in ourselves now will hopefully help us to avoid some major health problems later on down the road.
My weight over the last few years has stayed pretty much the same, until the last six months. I have gained about 8 pounds since I ran my first 15K race last fall. That may not sound like much, but for me it really is. I’ve also been dealing with a nagging shin splint problem over the last few months, which has meant that I haven’t been able to run as much as I would like to. My hips are rounder, and I have a tummy pouch. Like many women, I gain weight in my hips, thighs and stomach. I’m not looking to get supermodel skinny, I would just like to lose about 8 or 9 pounds. Basically, I just want to not have to lay down on my bed to zip my jeans. 🙂
I read through several diet books, and I’ve decided that a low carb approach is the way I want to go. Not zero carb, but LOWER carb. I think that it is the best choice to address both of our issues. I’m not planning to follow any specific low-carb diet because I couldn’t find one that I thought was perfect in every way.
Most of the books I read recommended a certain period of not eating grains. Basically it’s kind of like a detox period for your body. I’ve decided to do a 3 week period of no grains, and see how we feel at that time. If we feel better off grains completely (some people have had their health improve after doing this), I may continue it. Carrie over at Deliciously Organic has seen improvements in her health by going grain-free.
Our new diet will NOT be one of those low fat diets. I plan to use plenty of healthy fats like butter (yes, butter really is good for you), extra virgin olive oil, and coconut oil. There will also be tons of veggies. Buying healthier foods like grass-fed beef, pasture raised chicken/eggs, and organic produce can get expensive really quick, but I will try to buy as much of it as our food budget will allow.
You may be wondering why I would not choose to do a low-fat diet since my husband’s cholesterol results were on the bad side. I’ve been doing a lot of reading about traditional foods, and I’ve realized that saturated fat isn’t the evil thing that we have been lead to believe.
If you are interested, here is a 3 part article regarding the truth about saturated fats written by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig (authors of the Nourishing Traditions cookbook and the Eat Fat Lose Fat diet book).
Also, here is an article by Dr. Barry Sears that details why we need healthy fats.
To hold myself accountable during this time, I will be posting pics of my meals each day for the three week period. I will also provide updates on weight loss, and possibly measurements ( never thought I would consider doing that on here). My husband is supposed to go back in for lab test in about 2 1/2 months, so I will update you on that when that happens.
I am excited about the new direction that I am taking with my blog, and I hope that you will be too!
Have you or someone you know had success on a low-carb diet or grain-free diet?
Excellent post, Tempie! I am so excited for you and the direction of your blog. I think it’s perfect for you and I am really looking forward to reading your posts. You are right about making the changes now before health issues crop up that force you to make changes “cold turkey”. Peter and I could also stand to eat a little healthier as well. Diabetes runs in his family (his mom has it and his maternal grandmother and aunts had it), and it’s not a condition I want him to get down the road. We can’t control every aspect of our health, but I think it’s so important to take control of the things we CAN make choices about. Sending you a big hug from Houston and lots of good wishes for your blog’s new direction! 🙂
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Thank you so much for your sweet comment, Flavia! You’re the best!
Mary @ Fit and Fed
Yeah, I wouldn’t really believe that particular source (Fallon and Enig. Weston A Price Foundation, Dr. Mercola). It has a lot of misinformation about soy, saturated fats, and other things. But overall I’m sure it’s good that you are concentrating on eating healthy foods, and the extra produce will be healthy. In your situation I’d go more for the veggies than for the meats, I’d include soy for some of the protein, and for the oil source, I’d use olive oil and canola oil. No I don’t believe Fallon et. al. on canola oil, either.
Mary @ Fit and Fed recently posted…Mother’s Day Picnic Salad with Pea Shoots and Grilled Asparagus
I don’t agree with everything that Fallon, Enig, WAPF, or Dr. Mercola say either. I’ve been reading through several different diet/health books and I try to make an informed decision based on what I’ve learned from all of them. I haven’t really found one single book/person that I completely agree with. With so many contradictory opinions out there, it makes it hard to know what one should do. I can’t agree with you on the soy or canola oil thing though. My husband has hypothyroidism and several sources, besides the ones you named, say that people with that should avoid soy because it suppresses thyroid function. Soy also disturbs hormone balance. I’ve read that almost all the soy produced in this country is genetically modified, and I really try to avoid GM products.
Hi Tempie, I’m glad you read so widely, that’s great. It is hard, on health topics it often seems like you could dig and learn forever. I asked my endocrinologist about soy, he does not have any concern about it. He does say to avoid rich sources of iodine like sea vegetables if you have thyroid issues since taking too much iodine can backfire and cause hyperthyroidism (ironically, a lot of natural health sources encourage eating iodine sources or taking iodine when you have thyroid issues). I use organic, traditionally prepared soy products like tofu and tempeh, not refined products like soy protein isolate. Phytoestrogens in soy are a really complicated topic, but on the whole, soy is probably protective for some of the concerns that I care about, like cancer and heart disease prevention. Guess we will both just have to try to stay on top of the research.
Mary@FitandFed recently posted…Greek vegetarian dinner with lagana and Greek-style hummus