PRAYERS & WISHES FOR THANKSGIVING

tl-thanksgiving-2016-11-12-thru-11-24What does it really mean to be thankful for good health?  How precious is it to fight so hard to maintain good health?  If you’ve never had to work and climb out of bad health to get good health back, I’m guessing it may be a blessing you don’t fully appreciate.

A year ago I was 25 pounds heavier and had a Hemoglobin A1c of 9.3!  It wasn’t a pretty picture to be sure.  You might say I hit the proverbial “brick wall”.  It was change it or face some grim choices in the future.  I had to do something to get my health back.

Remember the old saying, “God helps those who help themselves” – ???  In my mind, this is a perfect example of that.  It’s not, by the way, found in the Bible – as so many think it is.  😉

I’m grateful for God’s help in decision-making, in giving me the determination I now have, and in loving me when my attitude toward working out was less than admirable.  I still hate going to the gym, but then I think of friends who are facing different outcomes because they didn’t get their type 2 diabetes under control.  They wish they had chosen a different path.  So do I.

Please join me in prayer:a-poem-prayer-for-thanksgiving

i-am-hisI wish for you good health.  For my friends with type one diabetes I always wish for a cure instead of management with insulin (which we are so thankful for).  Managing type one diabetes is so difficult.  I pray everyday for a cure.  We hold on to HOPE.

I wish those with unknown conditions would get answers to questions about symptoms they’re experiencing.

I wish people with conditions caused by malnutrition will receive the food they need.  Hunger is prevalent, even in the U.S.  I wish people with illness and disease that can be managed through a more healthy lifestyle will wake up to that truth.  Is it easy?  NO.  Is it worth it?  YOU BET.  🙂

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DIABETES AWARENESS MONTH

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I’m sure most people are AWARE of the two types of Diabetes – there’s type one – which means that the pancreas has never worked and won’t – and there’s type two – which means that the pancreas is the laziest organ in the body and needs a swift kick to get going every day (through low carb diet and exercise)!

Both types have unique challenges – but please don’t confuse the types – that doesn’t help anyone.  God bless the type ones who need constant monitoring and for whom insulin is essential.  Do not pass GO, do not collect $200 – take an insulin shot!

Type twos test – we test in the morning to get a fasting.  We test before exercise and afterwards.  We test when we feel weird (for me that’s a lot).  Stop laughing.  Seriously – quit it!

Type ones are also helped greatly through diet and exercise.

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I am dedicated to creating a health and wellness community as a way of giving back all I learned along the way to be as mindful and physically and emotionally and spiritually in “balance” as I can be. Being emotionally and physically fit demands a dedication to quality in every aspect of your life that evolves and gets better over time. Join me as I provide you with all the ingredients and wisdom I subscribe to and practice daily in my own life. Age is only a number…you can be cool and fit even at 68 ….My aim is to teach you “how” and to “motivate” you to make this a part of all that you are.  – Ellen Sherman

Ellen has been an amazing facebook friend!  Her posts have motivated me to live a more healthy lifestyle.  I know the goal is to live longer, but really – I’ve learned that it’s important on a daily basis so you can feel good – just feel GOOD – present tense.  It’s worth it to take care of yourself for the sake of the present moment – not just for the future.

Type twos like me absolutely HAVE to get up and move every day.  Move, move, mooooooooooove!!!

just-mooooveI love that poem!  LOL!!!  Move…  move… moooooooooove!

I can’t emphasize this enough to all type two diabetics…  DIET & EXERCISE!!!  One without the other is not good enough – you can eat low-carb foods but without the exercise, you won’t lower your A1c.  The two must work hand in hand.

My friend John found this song – LOL!

I once had someone say to me, “Diabetes?  So what’s the big deal?  You just take your shot and steer clear of sugar!”  Well, we know different, don’t we?  November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and a good chance for folks like that to learn that, living with diabetes is not as simple as they may have been led to believe.  Diabetes is always there, in our minds, 24/7.  It’s like the uninvited guest that never leaves!  Let us continue to spread the word that, it is not only important to be aware, but this awareness will save lives too.  I remember having no idea what my symptoms meant, back in 1974.  The loss of weight, despite eating the same, the frequent urination, the dehydration, and just feeling draggy.  My Father soon became more concerned and got me to the hospital.  I was soon diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.  A few years later, I noticed that a fellow worker was also showing these symptoms.  Like me, he was unaware of what was happening to him.  When I suggested to him that he should have it checked out, he just brushed it off with the fact that he had just been working too hard lately.  He kept feeling worse, and finally went to the hospital.  He was soon diagnosed with Type 1 also.  He later thanked me, and he was glad he followed through on my suggestion.  I hope everyone will help to spread awareness!  – John Manganiello

You know, the challenges for type ones and type twos are so vastly different, it would almost be a marvelous idea to come up with a completely different name for type two diabetes – because our bad press has cast a huge shadow on type ones that they do not deserve.

Type twos – we’re the ones who are generally overweight, lazy, and need to walk away from the dessert table with an empty plate.  We’re the ones that everybody seems to think we all are – but we’re NOT!  I wish type two diabetics had a completely different name – not associated with type ones at all.  Why?  Because our challenges are not the same.

Many people who are diabetic suffer from depression.  If you treat the depression it helps you with treating your diabetes.  If you treat the diabetes with a healthy lifestyle it helps you with the depression.  The mind-body connection is truly remarkable.  Do what it takes to increase your growth of brain cells which diminishes with poor diabetic control.  – Ellen Sherman

Type ones have done NOTHING WRONG – they were born with a non-functioning pancreas – yet folks for some unknown reason – stick them with the same stigma that type twos have to live with – it’s so unfair, people.  Be careful how you categorize diabetics!  Better yet – don’t label any of us – not even type twos.  It’s really mean because if you aren’t living the life – you just don’t get it.14611161_1596306397343706_3508515821361959285_n

Here’s my facebook friend, Alissa Podber, dressed in blue in honor of Diabetic Awareness Month!  Isn’t she pretty?  🙂

The type two struggle is real, people!  I don’t eat starches – do you know how much of the food group that includes?  I eat HIGH PROTEIN, LOW CARB.  It’s a disciplined lifestyle, but my A1c went from 9 to 6.3 in a few months…  so – it works!  I no longer have to take insulin.  But here’s the humbling truth – – – I know if I mess up my diet or skip exercise – I’ll go right back from whence I came – I’ve become scared of food.  Who is scared of FOOD???  What’s the name for that phobia?

I can’t eat beans in chili – that’s a tough one.  Beans are high in fiber but they also have a ton of carbs!  I can no longer put potatoes or pasta in soup – my vegetable soup is tomato juice, water, celery, kale, carrots and hamburger.  Yes, I’ve lost 25 pounds and have a way to go…  but it’s a real sacrifice.

No more bread…  I tried cloud bread – I don’t get what the big whoop is about – I didn’t like it.

SO…  I get a little 4-pack of that sweet Hawaiian bread – you know the kind – in the orange wrapper – KING’S I think it’s called.  I hide it from myself and eat one of those rolls (not the whole package) if I have a LOW.  I know a lot of people keep a tube of icing in the house – but I get so hungry for bread…  this works better for me.  🙂

Diabetes is a daily part of Aly’s life … day in and day out she deals with finger pricks, blood sugar testing, infusion site changes, high and low blood sugars, and treating low blood sugars. This will continue to be Aly’s lifestyle until the day a cure is found. #t1dlookslikeme #diabetesawarenessmonth  – Katrina, Aly’s awesome mom.

My little friend (but getting bigger every year) Aly, made some really cute memes for Diabetic Awareness Month.  Mom Katrina said it’s okay to post them – YAY!  I think Aly needs to give me some designing lessons – these are so very cute!14516447_10153986567143379_6359830083846122574_n

My super hero friend Aly – creative and personality PLUS.  🙂

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Stay strong, my young superhero friend!  My type one friends need a cure!  I need a stronger resolve to maintain a LCHF (low carb high fat) diet and exercise every day.  God bless us, every one!  🙂

WORLD PASTA DAY

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TL 10-25 WORLD PASTA DAY (2)

Did you know there are over 400 unique types of pasta?  There are so many possibilities for amazing soups, salads and casseroles!  Which one will you create today???

Since I’m a diabetic, I have to be careful to pair pasta with lean protein.  I also try to use a whole wheat pasta when possible.  To be honest – I really prefer regular pasta.  The whole wheat pasta is heavier and an acquired taste.  I’ve not acquired a taste for it – yet.  I may never acquire a taste for it.  😦

I like Dreamfields pasta, especially the lasagna noodles!  I don’t always find it at my local grocery store, but every now and then I find it.

This is my favorite recipe.  Enjoy!  🙂

Ingredients:

12 Dreamfields Lasagna noodles

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup diced onion

1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1 clove garlic, minced

4 cups fresh spinach

2 zucchini, thinly sliced

1 cup peas (thawed if frozen)

16 ounces non-fat ricotta cheese

16 ounces whole milk ricotta cheese

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

5 cups marinara sauce 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions:

Prepare pasta according to package directions; set aside. Heat olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook about 5 minutes or until translucent. Stir in Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes and garlic. Cook 30 seconds; add spinach, zucchini and peas. Cook 10 minutes or until spinach is wilted, peas are cooked through and zucchini is tender. Remove from heat; drain off any liquid. In separate bowl combine ricotta cheeses and grated nutmeg. Preheat oven to 375 F°. Spread 3/4 cup marinara sauce on the bottom of a 9×13-inch oven-safe baking dish. Layer with 4 of the lasagna noodles (3 vertical, one horizontal). Spread 1/2 of ricotta mixture and 1/2 of vegetable mixture over noodles. Spoon 1 1/2 cups marinara sauce over vegetable mixture. Continue to layer with lasagna noodles, remaining ricotta mixture, remaining vegetable mixture and 1 1/2 cups marinara sauce. Top with remaining 4 additional lasagna noodles and remaining 1 1/4 cups marinara sauce. Sprinkle evenly with mozzarella cheese; cover loosely with foil. Bake 40 minutes. Remove foil; continue baking 10 minutes or until bubbly and hot. Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition information (1/8 of recipe): Calories: 490 Fat: 18 grams Carbs: 56 grams Protein: 26 grams Saturated Fat: 8 grams Cholesterol: 45 mg Sodium: 930 mg Dietary Fiber: 9 grams

Happy World Pasta Day!!!  🙂

NATIONAL KALE DAY

tl-10-5-national-kale-dayKale is the perfect companion for bacon and cheese as part of a healthy low-carb salad.  Anytime a vegetable is cooked, it takes some of the nutrients out of it, but I prefer kale a little wilted so I fry it up with my bacon to make it taste better.images-46Kale chips are pretty good.  They do provide that crunch that chips used to.  Are there really health benefits to eating kale?  Does it really give you a boost of energy like people claim?  My research tells me the answer to both questions is YES.

Since a low-carb diet allows many foods that have low or no fiber content, kale helps with a need for fiber, much like other types of lettuce and spinach.  It also contains an antioxidant called alpha-lipoic acid, which lowers glucose levels, increases insulin sensitivity and prevents oxidative stress-induced changes in patients with diabetes!  My ears perked up when I read that!  It also decreases peripheral neuropathy and/or autonomic neuropathy in diabetics!  This is good news for diabetics!!!

My theory is, if you can put enough stuff that actually tastes good (bacon, cheese, salad dressing) with the kale in your salad – it really sort of masks it enough that you can eat it without choking it down.  I’m being honest.  Have you tried to eat a piece of raw kale with nothing on it?  I rest my case.

I don’t juice because juicing is not the best choice for diabetics.  We need to keep the fiber intact rather than squeezing the juice from the fruit or vegetable.  The sugar content is found in the juice – and why would I want to ditch the fiber and keep the sugar?  That doesn’t make sense in my brain.kale

Kale is a super veggie, with more vitamins and minerals than spinach.  If you are lacking energy and seem to be dragging along, maybe you should try a salad with kale.  Use plenty of dressing – not a sweet dressing, but a blue cheese or ranch type dressing.  Read the labels before using – I prefer blue cheese but once in a while I use ranch.

Leafy greens such as romaine lettuce, kale, collards, Swiss chard, and spinach are the most nutrient-dense of all foods.  – Joel Fuhrman

My kale salad is not as “fancy” as most recipes you’ll find because I don’t eat dried cranberries or pour sweet vinaigrettes over it, but for what it is, I think it’s good.

Kale Salad

INGREDIENTS:

6-7 cups chopped fresh kale leaves

1 Tbs. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

6-8 slices cooked bacon, chopped

1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese

1/2 cup toasted chopped pecans

INSTRUCTIONS:

Basically, just mix this all together, tossing with your hands.

Add your blue cheese dressing and you’re good to go!

 

🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (20)If I’m going to maintain this low-carb weight losing lifestyle…  I’ve GOT to get creative!  I thought about all the foods that used to call to me and cause me to go find them.  I say USED TO because I’m talking about FAST FOOD!!!  Cover the kids’ ears, because this could be shocking!

Got ’em covered?  Good.  Okay…  here’s what I want you to do.  Think about your favorite fast food.  Mine is the Market Fresh Turkey & Swiss Sandwich at Arby’s.  Now – what ingredients do I need to say NO to?  The bread…  I have to say NO to the bread.

As far as I can tell, the rest of that sandwich is amazing and legal.  Sliced turkey, sliced Swiss cheese, tomato, red onion and romaine lettuce.  Instead of a traditional salad dressing, I mix mayo and Dijon mustard together and put it in the salad bowl.

And here’s what it looks like:IMG_1502It’s a happy little low-carb lunch!  I didn’t use romaine lettuce because I already had iceberg.  I made this salad for a fraction of the price they charge for the sandwich at Arby’s – and I’ll have enough stuff to make this a few more times!  Yay me!  Success!

There are sub shops that will make any of their sandwiches into salads for you – but you have to ask because some of them don’t have that information posted.  Most restaurants will bend over backwards to make substitutions for you, but ask if the change will cost you extra.  Different places have different policies and it’s best to be on the safe side.  You don’t want to get a big surprise on your check at the end of the meal.emergency-309727_1280

In the KEEP MOVING department…  so far, so good.  I’m going to Planet Fitness 3 days a week and working on the treadmill for 15 minutes, the bike for 15 minutes, leg machines at 20-50 pounds, arm machines at 20-30 pounds and ab machines at 20 pounds – and those things kill me – just being honest.

I’ll never be a skinny person, but I’m doing the best I can.  There are some pretty awesome rewards for being consistent with diet and exercise.  I don’t know why I doubted that it applied to me, but…  surprise – it does!  I’m pretty happy and very pleased that my blood glucose levels and A1c are in normal range.  🙂

 

 

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (30)LC KEY LIME PIEThis has been such a fun journey with my friends!  Thanks to Deanna Stalnaker for sharing this recipe on facebook!  Even though we have shared great main dish and side dish recipes, what is life without a little dessert?  I was so tickled to see this because believe it or not, Key Lime Pie is my favorite – yeah, it really is!

Deanna said that even though the recipe calls for a 0.6 oz. package of sugar-free Jell-O, she uses the 0.3 oz. package.  So make a note of that.  😉

All people with healthy physical appetites have a sweet tooth somewhere in their heads.  – Macmillan’s Magazine, 1887

How about a low-carb strawberry cheesecake???  Yeah!  I’m on a roll.

I’m starting to like those pies with the ground pecan shells, aren’t you?

I’ve never before eaten a dessert, then tested and had my blood glucose be HAPPY!  I’m so excited about this…  I really am!

Pie…it fills the cracks of the heart. Go away, pain.  – Kevin James, Mall Cop

Did you see the movie, Mall Cop???  Kevin James cracks me up – and that’s a great movie!

So far I haven’t gone completely Atkins, but I think legal donuts sound really good!  I like “fair food” – and truth be told, that’s the real reason I go to our state fair every year.  :-/

So on those days when you don’t think you can live on low-carb and low-fat, know that you don’t have to.  There are alternatives to traditional high carbohydrate foods.  Aren’t we thankful for “the way of escape” recipes that keep blood glucose numbers happy?  I know I am!

Don’t dig your grave with your own knife and fork.  – English proverb

What’s your favorite low-carb recipe?  Let me know in the comments below.  I believe we’re all here to help each other on this journey toward healthier blood glucose!  🙂

 

COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

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There’s only one thing better than eating low-carbohydrate foods…  and that’s eating them on our antique dishes!  😉  We enjoy our autumn leaf pattern Jewel Tea dishes!

I’m learning what foods keep my blood sugar happy – YAY!  There’s a popular spot here in Kansas called THE BROOKVILLE HOTEL where they have just one meal on the menu, but folks come from miles around to enjoy their wonderful food!  They make everything the old-fashioned way with nothing “diet”.

I’ve tweaked the coleslaw recipe so that I can have it anytime I want.  Here is my low-carb version of this classic:

COLESLAW

Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Whipping Cream
  • 2/3 cup Splenda (or less to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/3 cup vinegar
  • 1 1/2 pounds shredded cabbage

Instructions:

Combine dressing ingredients and refrigerate 30 minutes before serving.

To serve mix with 1 1/2 pounds shredded or thinly sliced cabbage.

I never imagined I could eat a sandwich without bread, but I do because it makes my blood sugar happier.  Cheese is low or no carb and meat is completely legal.  In the days to come, as I learn more, I’ll share with you!

Up to this point, I know that I need to workout for an hour, 3 days a week and eat a very low carb diet.  On the days I don’t workout, I still stay as active as possible.  I usually take a brisk walk around my neighborhood for about a half hour.

http://www.brookvillehotel.com/

Brookville, Kansas was the original home of the hotel, but they were unable to stay there – so now they have a replica of the hotel built in Abilene, Kansas.  The food is still amazing, but it was sad to see them have to move from their original location.  The original old hotel was interesting to see.  Part of it was a bank – and we got to eat in the vault one time.

As you can see, the Brookville Hotel makes everything the old-fashioned way with real ingredients.  It’s yummy, but most of what they fix is high in carbohydrates.  Part of living a low-carb lifestyle means that you take the best foods on the menu and make them “legal” to eat.  I’m glad I could do that with the great coleslaw from the Brookville Hotel.  🙂