Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Life Change Steps: The Goal


If you really want to eat the way I do and lose weight, you need to understand that I didn't make all these changes in one shot. I did it slowly, over the course of a year, building upon each new concept once I had the first concept down. So, that's how I'll teach you... one concept at a time.

So, for your first week, here's the concept: If God didn't make it, don't eat it. If man messed with it, don't eat it. Eat foods that are closest to their natural state.


1. Read labels... forget about calories, sodium, etc. Only pay attention to the ingredient list. Start looking at some of your favorite packaged foods & google each ingredient, if you don't know what it is. For instance, soy lechithin is in just about everything. What is soy and how does it work in our bodies? Processed soy (soy lechithin, tvp, tofu, etc) disrupts the endocrine function, contains potent anti-thyroid agents that cause hypothyroidism and may cause thyroid cancer, increases the body's need for certain vitamins (such as B12, vitamin D, etc), contains toxic and highly carcinogenic nitrosamines, contains MSG, contains high levels of aluminum which is toxic to the nervous system and kidneys, weakens the immune system, etc). So, now that you know what processed soy is and does to your body, do you still want to eat it? My guess is, probably not. So...know what you're eating!! Start learning what ingredients are.

2. Throw away foods you can no longer (nor want to) eat anymore & replace them with foods you can eat. If it's not in your house, you're less likely to eat it.

3. Shop the outside aisles of your grocery store which contains fresh foods (produce, meats, bakery, etc); middle aisles are most often processed foods containing additives, preservatives, and colorings. Other good places to start shopping are farmer's markets, local co-ops, health food stores (such as Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, etc), local farmer's, etc.

What You Can Eat:

1. FATS: only cold-pressed virgin (or extra virgin) oils such as olive oil, safflower oil, coconut oil, grapeseed oil, etc. Use full-fat butter (not margarine) or Soy-Free Earth Balance (non-dairy butter). Full-fat salad dressings.
*FATS TO AVOID:  anything that says "hydrogenated" in the ingredient list

2. GRAINS/CARBS: only 100% whole-grains (must say 100% WHOLE on the ingredient list). Examples of whole grains: whole-wheat, oats/oatmeal, spelt, millet, barley, rye, amaranth, quinoa, teff, brown rice, wild rice, etc. Eat a variety of these grains, not just whole-wheat all the time. Other carb sources: Beans, Peas & Lentils (such as black, pinto, kidney, azuki, garbanzo, lima, navy, etc. Black eyed peas, black peas, yellow peas, snow and snap peas, etc.)
*GRAINS TO AVOID: anything that says, "100% wheat, enriched wheat, whole wheat". Only if it says, "100% WHOLE WHEAT" is it the whole unprocessed grain. Avoid anything that says "enriched". *Optional: avoid anything that says "corn" in the ingredient list (such as corn, cornstarch, cornmeal, corn syrup, etc).

3. VEGETABLES: fresh or frozen are best. Organic is best.
*VEGETABLES TO AVOID: canned vegetables

4. FRUITS: fresh or frozen are best. Organic is best. Dried fruits without added sugar is ok.
*FRUITS TO AVOID: juices, dried fruits (with added sugar), canned fruit, etc

5. PROTEIN: Organic, hormone-free, grass-fed meats are best such as buffalo, venison, chicken, beef, ostrich, lamb, pork, etc. Other protein sources: Raw Nuts (such as Roasted Peanuts, Raw or Lightly-Salted w/Sea Salt walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, cashews, pecans, hazelnuts, almonds, brazil nuts, etc.) No-Sugar-Added Nut Butters (such as Almond Butter, Cashew Butter, Tahini, Peanut Butter, etc) Fresh-Water Fish (such as salmon, herring, cod, trout, sardines, halibut, tuna, perch, red snapper, orange roughy, tilapia, etc) Organic Eggs, Organic Full-Fat Cheese (low-fat mozzarella is ok)
*PROTEIN TO AVOID: processed meats such as hot dogs, sausage, pepperoni, bologna, salami, beef jerky, etc. Farmed Fish such as "atlantic salmon", tuna steaks, mackeral, catfish, sturgeon, swordfish & shark. Low-fat cheese, processed cheeses (such as Velveeta, American cheese, etc), non-organic eggs, anything with "hydrogenated" in the ingredient list
*Optional: I only eat meat 1-2 times a week. The rest of the time I eat nuts, nut butters, eggs and cheese as my protein sources.

6. DAIRY: Organic Whole Milk, Plain yogurt (goat milk yogurt or Greek yogurt are best), Unsweetened Non-Dairy Milks (such as rice milk, almond milk, coconut milk, etc)
*DAIRY TO AVOID: fat-free or low-fat dairy products, processed/sugar-added yogurts (such as Yoplait, Dannon, etc), soy milk.

7. DRINKS: Organic coffee & decaf, Organic Green teas, no-sugar-added sparkling waters/mineral waters, alcohol (in moderation), low-salt vegetable juices, filtered water.
*DRINKS TO AVOID: all pop (even diet), sweetened iced teas, sweetened fruit drinks/juices, cocoas/hot chocolate/chocolate milk, etc.

8. SWEETENERS: Try to only use natural sweeteners (such as Raw honey, 100% pure maple syrup, agave nectar, stevia, Sucanat, unsulphured blackstrap molasses, brown rice syrup, etc), but limit it to 1-2 times/week! Sweeteners are the main culprit for weight gain & diabetes, even the natural ones! All-fruit jams without added sugars are ok.
*SWEETENERS TO AVOID: fat-free & low-fat products (they are almost always high in sugar!), white sugar, brown sugar, etc. Anything with any of the following words in the ingredient list: sucrose, glucose, fructose, dextrose, maltose, corn syrup, corn syrup solids, high fructose corn syrup, barley malt, etc.
*Optional: The only sweeteners I use are agave nectar & stevia. I avoid everything else.

9. HERBS/SPICES: fresh is best, but dried is fine, too (just remember to read ingredient labels). Natural sea salt.
*HERBS/SPICES TO AVOID: table salt, anything with "citric acid" in the ingredient list, etc

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Running while in Costume

I'm fighting yet another summer cold. This makes two colds for me in 5 weeks! No fun.

I've always wondered if it's better to rest while fighting an illness or if it's better to workout your body. Thoughts? I voted for having a pajama and movie day in my house today! Rapunzel down, currently watching Mary Poppins and next will be Dora and Charlotte's Web.

Speaking of working out your body... I have my 6 week postpartum appointment on Monday and I can't wait to hear if I'm in the clear to start running again!!! This has gotten me thinking about my running goals. I'm going to start small with short-term goals and long-term goals.

My first small short-term goal is to get back to running a 5K using the C25K program. So, even though I didn't want to commit to a 5K run, I couldn't say "no" when my friend asked me if I'd run in the Anoka Halloween Gray Ghost Run 5K with her at the end of October.

See, we grew up together in Anoka and Anoka, MN is known as the Halloween Capital of the World. Every year they put on a Halloween Parade, amongst other Halloween activities, and the runners start out the parade! You can see some of last year's costume's here.

Now onto the dilemma.

If you don't wear a costume, you will stick out like a sore thumb. Almost every runner is dressed in a fun costume, that's half the fun of having them start out the parade. The dilemma is... I am not good at dressing up, I worry about chaffing and being able to run in a costume and lastly, I have very limited funds.

I found a few cute ideas on Caitlin's blog here, but I want to get ideas from you, my faithful readers! 

What should I dress up as for my first postpartum 5K?!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Candied Walnuts

Can you believe I've never made candied nuts before? I know, I know, the shame! :)

Today, changed that. I can't believe how easy they were to make! And how tasty, too! Yum!

Whole Life Nutrition's Candied Walnuts (modified)
Serves 4

1 cup walnuts (or pecans or other nut of your choice)
1 T extra virgin olive oil
2 T maple-flavored agave nectar
pinch sea salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place ingredients in a pie pan and mix together. Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes. Let cool slightly, and then remove from pie pan and place on a plate to cool.


I put the candied nuts on top of this beauty!

Whole Life Nutrition's Spinach Salad with Candied Walnuts & Dried Cherries
Serves 4

8 oz spinach leaves
1/2 c dried organic cherries
1/2 small red onion, sliced into thin rounds (optional)
Candied Walnuts (see recipe above)
Sweet & Salty Vinaigrette (see recipe below)

Place spinach into a salad bowl. Add candied walnuts, cherries & onion. Top with dressing.


Whole Life Nutrition's Sweet & Salty Vinaigrette (modified)

1.5 T extra virgin olive oil
1.5 T sunflower oil
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 T maple-flavored agave nectar
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper

Place all dressing ingredients into a small jar with a tight fitting lid and shake well. Dress salads just before serving.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Weekly Wrap-Up

Popular Posts
My top 5 most popular posts from this week. Check them out, if you missed them!

  1. 4-weeks Postpartum: The Recipes (pt 2)
  2. Lesson Learned
  3. Dish Invasion & Pumpkin Pie for Breakfast
  4. Meet Adelyn Anna: My Hypnobirthing/Waterbirth Story
  5. 3-weeks Postpartum: The Elimination Diet for Colic

Blogger Love - Referrals
A big THANK YOU and shout out to the following bloggers, who were the top referring sites this week! Check out their blogs, if you haven't yet!

  1. The Fowble Five
  2. Healthy Living Blogs
  3. MN Food Bloggers
  4. Daily Garnish

Blogger Love - My Favorite Posts
These are posts written by fellow bloggers. These are my favorites from this week!
  1. I'm Sorry for Judging You @ Faith Fitness Fun
  2. My Big Decision @ Chocolate Covered Katie
  3. Vegan Cool Whip @ Chocolate Covered Katie
  4. Showered with Love @ Daily Garnish
  5. Free Samples @ Love Veggies & Yoga
  6. Delicious with Coconut @ Kath Eats Real Food
Just For Fun - Popular Search Words
These are the top keywords that people have used this week to find my blog.

  1. Coconut Oil Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
  2. McDonald's Experiment
  3. Meal-in-a-Glass
  4. Mini Baked Oatmeal
  5. "In Between Contractions"
  6. 1 Hr Walk 2 Weeks Postpartum
  7. Chubby Bunny Ice Cream Flavor
  8. Diabetic Burrito Beans
  9. Endo Foodie

Just For Fun - Countries Visited
People from all over the world find my blog! Here are the countries that visited this week (besides the USA).

  1. Thailand
  2. Germany
  3. United Kingdom
  4. Argentina
  5. Canada
  6. Brazil
  7. Romaina
A special THANK YOU to all my readers! YOU are the reason I write this blog. YOU make all the effort worth it! I am grateful for each and every one of you. 
Amykinz, Foodie4Healing

Lesson Learned

My family lives about 40 minutes from me and Saturday was my niece and nephew's birthday party. Following the birthday party, we decided spur of the moment, to spend the night at my brother's house. So, we made a pit stop at Target to get some extra diapers and wipes for Baby A and were on our way. As we were driving, I realized, I had no elimination-diet-friendly food with me and most people don't have that kind of stuff on hand. I also had very little cash, so I couldn't go to grocery store and stock up on what I needed. A girl has to eat, so I decided to just eat whatever was made.

Wrong choice.

I ate Buffalo Chicken Dip, Homemade Spinach Dip with Hawaiian Bread, frozen Pepperoni Pizza and Homemade Chewy Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Immediately following eating these items, I was sick to my stomach. My stomach hurt the whole night, the whole next day and I woke up last night with a headache, the chills and feeling like I was going to yak.

These were some of my favorite foods, pre-pregnancy and to be honest, they didn't even taste as good as I remember them. I could eat them all the time and never physically feel (or at least notice) the effects. This very thought made me ill. How could I have abused my body so badly by what I put in it that I didn't even notice the horrifying effects it now had on my body?

It amazes me that for the past year I've treated my body kindly and eaten mostly only healthy things to make it run the way God intended it to and that now, when I put junk food in it, it

Instead, I was happy to come home and get back to my healthy eating. Besides, who wouldn't want to eat something that tastes this yummy, is good for you, and won't make you sick for days afterwards?

Chocolate-Covered Katie's Chocolate-Raspberry Truffle Oats

I used 1/2 cup of oats, instead of the 1/3 cup recommendation. I also topped mine with dairy-free soy-free chocolate chunks, Justin's Chocolate Hazelnut Butter and Artisana's Coconut Butter. Lastly, I added Greens Mix and Rice Protein Powder before cooking, to make it a complete meal.

Friday, August 19, 2011

4-weeks postpartum: The Recipes (pt 2)

Now, onto the delicious recipes!

Luckily, eating the Elimination Diet doesn't mean you have to hate what you're eating. You find the things you can have & you make something delicious, beautiful and satisfying with them!

Whole Life Nutrition's Chicken Nuggets

1-2 organic chicken nuggets
1/2 cup rice milk
1 cup brown rice flour
1.5 tsp savory spice
2-3 T virgin coconut oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut chicken breasts into "nugget" sized pieces. Place milk into a bowl. Place rice flour and savory spice into another bowl. Take chicken pieces and place them into milk, mix them around to get them coated then dredge the chicken pieces into the rice flour/spice mixture until very well coated. Rub the bottom of a 9"x13" pan with the coconut oil, and then place the nuggets evenly in the pan. Place pan into preheated oven and bake for about 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and cut into the thickest nugget to see if it's still pink. If it is, then place pan back into the oven for some extra cooking time.

*Note: These nuggets can be frozen before baking to make a very quick meal at another time. Simply bake the frozen nuggets as directed above. I used my leftover nuggets to top a salad the next day.


Whole Life Nutrition's Sunny Sunflower Seed Burgers (modified)

1 cup uncooked brown rice (I used Uncle Ben's instant)
2 cups water
pinch sea salt
2 cups raw sunflower seeds
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 small carrot, coarsely chopped
extra virgin olive oil for cooking

Cook rice according to package directions. While you let the rice stand, place the sunflower seeds and thyme in a food processor and process until finely ground. Add the chopped carrots and pulse a few times. Be sure not to over process the mixture or it will get very gooey. Then add the processed ingredients into the rice. Form mixture into patties. Heat a skillet over medium heat and add about 1 T extra virgin olive oil. Add burger and cook on both sides for about 3-5 minutes.

*Note: Uncooked patties can be stored in a glass container in between wax paper in the fridge for up to a week.


Whole Life Nutrition's Oven Fries

4 medium organic sweet potatoes
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Peel skins from potatoes and cut into fries. Put all ingredients in a large ziplock bag and shake until fries are well coated. Arrange in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Bake until golden (I like mine slightly burned because it gives them a caramelized flavor), about 30 minutes.


Easy Green Beans w/Almonds & Thyme

1-2 cans green beans
1/2 cup sliced almonds
dried thyme, to taste

Cook green beans in microwave, covered, for approximately 2 minutes on high. Top with sliced almonds and add the dried thyme, to taste.


Whole Life Nutrition's Agave Poppy Seed Vinaigrette

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 T red wine vinegar
1-2 T agave nectar
1 T poppy seeds
1/4 tsp sea salt

Place all ingredients into a small bowl and whisk.


Whole Life Nutrition's Energizing Berry Nut Smoothie (modified)

1/2 cup raw cashews
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup frozen blueberries
1/4 cup frozen cherries

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.


Basic Carob Cake with Carob "Frosting"
Adapted from Simple Treats by Ellen Abraham cookbook

1/2 cup sunflower oil
1/2 cup agave nectar
2 cups non-dairy milk
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp stevia powder
3 cups brown rice flour
1/2 cup carob powder
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp corn-free baking powder
1 tsp sea salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Oil one 9"x13" cake pan, and set aside. Mix the oil, syrup, milk, vinegar and vanilla in a small bowl. In a separate, larger bowl, place the stevia and sift the flour, carob powder, baking soda, corn-free baking powder and salt into the stevia. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until well incorporated. Finish mixing with a spatula to scrap the sides of the bowl. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes or until knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool completely before putting on the carob "frosting".

Carob "Frosting"
For the carob frosting, I used Averie's Vegan Coconut Oil Chocolate recipe, but I doubled the recipe and substituted carob powder for the cocoa powder.


Whole Life Nutrition's Coconut Cashew Chocolate Chunk Cookies

1/3 cup softened virgin coconut oil
1/4 cup agave nectar
1 tsp stevia powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup brown rice flour
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1/2-1 cup shredded organic coconut
1/2 cup raw cashews, ground
1 tsp corn-free baking powder
1 tsp guar gum
soy-free, dairy-free chocolate chunks

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place coconut oil, agave nectar, stevia, sea salt and vanilla into a medium bowl and blend on high with electric beaters for about 2 minutes. Place cashews into a coffee grinder and grind until finely ground. In a separate bowl, mix together the brown rice flour, tapioca flour, coconut, ground cashews, baking powder, and guar gum. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix together with an electric mixer until well combined. Add water, one T at a time, if mixture seems too dry. Fold in chocolate chunks. Grease a cookie sheet with coconut oil. Form dough into balls then gently flatten between the palms of your hands. Place on the cookie sheet. Bake for 12-15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Cookies will be somewhat crumbly when hot and will harden as they cool.

4-weeks postpartum: Breast Feeding Problems (pt 1)

I hate the Elimination Diet.

It's taken some of my staple food items away from me. Every day I'm missing a food. Lately it's been ice cream, coffee and goat cheese. I also miss peanut butter. *sigh* The things we do for children...

With that said, the diet has been working. Baby A's waketimes are finally happy/content times. Before she would just cry the whole time. She also hasn't had a 2-3 hour middle-of-the-night crying/inconsolable episode since I've been on the diet. (Except 2 nights ago. I think black beans are to blame.)

So, I continue the diet for another 2-months at least (according to my Kinesiologist). As of right now, there's no adding anything back in. Oh, and I had heard that you can eat something & then pump & dump for up to 8 hours after eating it & it should be out of your system. Since hearing this, I've learned that it's not true.


Another fun (enter sarcasm) thing that happened was that Baby A decided to no longer take the breast.

We were visiting my in-laws (who live on a farm in the middle of the nowhere) last weekend. For whatever reason, starting Saturday afternoon, Baby A would no longer nurse. She'd just cry and scream until we gave her a bottle of breast milk. Eventually, she wouldn't even try to latch anymore. From the stress of it, I wasn't producing enough. So, I ended up driving up to the local IGA a half hour before they closed in order to buy a can of formula, just in case. Luckily, we didn't end up needing it.

A friend of mine suggested trying a nipple shield to assist her in latching onto the breast again. The first time I tried it, once we got back home, she latched right on and ate for 15 minutes! I switched her to the other side and the antics began again. She wouldn't latch. She kept crying. I assumed she wasn't hungry anymore. She had her waketime, then I put her down for a nap. She kept waking. So, I gave her a bottle and sure enough, she ate another ounce. This was the final straw for me.

If you've been following my postpartum posts at all, you know that breast feeding has been a struggle for Baby A and me since the day she was born. I've tried just about everything I can think of to get her to eat from the breast, but to no avail. My DH and I decided it was time to stop fighting it. It was too stressful for both the baby and for me (and probably for my DH in retrospect, too). Now, we only feed her by bottle and I pump. Yes, it's more work. Yes, it's usually more time. But, everyone is so much more happy and content. It's what works for us.

I didn't have this trouble with my first child. She latched right on and would consistently eat from both breasts for 15-20 minutes each feeding. She was my only child, so I had all the time in the world to sit there and feed her. I would read my Bible out loud to her and it was such a relaxing and restful time for both of us. That is not the case with Baby A. I've struggled for the past 4 weeks with feeling like a failure and wondering what I'm doing wrong. I've had ridiculous thoughts such as "Does my baby not like me?" and "What's wrong with me that my Baby won't take my breast?" It's a defeating and yet humbling experience when breast feeding doesn't work how you (and most of society) thinks it should. So, I just want to say to the other mother's out there who have or are struggling with breast feeding... it's okay to give it up. It doesn't mean you're a failure. It doesn't mean there's something wrong with you. You are not alone. 

There is nothing wrong with exclusively pumping. And there is nothing wrong with feeding your baby formula. Sure, mother's milk is best, but if it's not possible, formula is the next best thing. We currently give Baby A six bottles of breast milk per day. The 7th bottle is formula. (According to my Kinesiologist, this is the best formula to feed your baby. Also, see here for an interesting article on making your own formula or enhancing formula with supplements.) The reason we do the formula bottle is 2-fold... 1) I don't want to pump in the middle of night 2) Formula takes longer for babies to digest, so we're hoping it will tie her over long enough start sleeping longer stretches at night. This is not a proven philosophy, just our own.

P.S. If your milk production is low and you're looking for ways to increase it, try this Greens Mix. I wasn't producing what Baby A was eating and my Kinesiologist put me on this product. Within 24 hours, I was producing more! Since I started on the product, I've been consistently pumping 3-5 oz each time (prior to the product, I was sometimes only pumping 1 oz).


We've gotten out to walk a few times, but mainly it comes in the form of field trips! Like Baby A's first trip to the MN Zoo.

Even though my ab muscles are still 1.5 finger-widths apart, the Kinesiologist cleared me to finally start adding in some crunches, pelvic tilts and leg slides! Yippee! It feels soooooo good to be able to work my body again.

And here's this week's post-baby body progress:
5 days post-baby
Wt lost since delivery: 14 lbs
4 weeks post-baby
Wt lost since delivery: 26 lbs
DD wanted to get in on the "after" picture with me this week. Isn't she cute? :) 

So, as you can see, I've gained a pound this week. I think my body is starting to find it's "happy weight".

Though I am still going to keep an eye on the scale, it's not going to be the defining factor into my "weight" or "body" goals. I am very happy with what the scale says right now. I haven't been this weight or size in over 12 years, which means, my own husband has never known me this thin (we've been together for 10 years)! For me, it's more about how I'm physically feeling and how my clothes are fitting. I'd also like to tone up and work on getting a flatter stomach. My fitness goals also have to do with things like endurance... I'd like to work towards running a 10K, which I've never done before! 

So, from here on out, you'll probably only get progress photo posts once a month.


And because this post is so long now, stay tuned for part 2 of week-4 postpartum's recipes!

Monday, August 15, 2011

3-weeks postpartum: The Elimination Diet for Colic

Week 3 has definitely been a test of my DH & my patience. Not only have we discovered Baby A has a case of infant reflux, but she also has colic. It's not infrequent for her to scream for hours on end with no way in sight of soothing her. We got her on Zantac & have taken her in for a chiropractic adjustment. I also have an appointment with the Kinesiologist for her, but we couldn't get in until August 16th. In the meantime, I contacted their office & asked what I could do between now & then. He put me on the Elimination Diet for Breast Feeding & Colic. Until further notice, my diet is now the following...

Apples, fresh or frozen berries, cherries. Avoid all other fruits & fruit juices.

All except onions, celery, cucumber, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, garlic, asparagus, cress, bok choy, corn, creamed vegetables, white & red potatoes.

Rice, oats, millet, quinoa, amaranth, tapioca, buckwheat. Avoid wheat, corn, barley, spelt, kamut, rye, all gluten-containing products.

All beans & lentils except peas, soybeans, tofu, tempeh, soy milk, other soy products.

All nuts & nut butters except peanuts, peanut butter, pistachios, any nut roasted in peanut oil.

Wild-caught salmon, organic chicken, turkey, wild game & lamb. Avoid beef, pork, cold cuts, frankfurters, sausage, canned meats, eggs, shellfish, tuna, freshwater fish.

All milk substitutes such as rice milk, almond milk, coconut milk, other nut milks. Avoid milk, cheese, cottage cheese, cream, yogurt, butter, ice cream, frozen yogurt, "non-dairy" creamers.

Cold-pressed olive, flax, canola, safflower, sunflower, sesame, walnut, pumpkin or almond oils. Avoid margarine, butter, shortening, hydrogenated oils, mayonnaise, spreads, soybean oil, peanut oil.

Filtered water & herbal or green tea. Avoid all carbonated beverages, alcoholic beverages, coffee, black tea & other caffeinated beverages.

Sea salt & fresh ground black pepper. Avoid all other spices*, chocolate*, ketchup, mustard, relish, chutney, soy sauce, barbeque sauce, all other condiments & store bought sauces.
*Note: I've tried Thyme & Cocoa and neither seem to affect Baby A.

Stevia. Avoid white or brown sugar, honey, maple syrup, corn syrup, candy & desserts made with these sweeteners.
*Note: I've tried Agave Nectar & small amounts of Evaporated Cane Juice (in milk substitutes & some nut butters) and neither seem to affect Baby A.

Please note that this diet is being done under the supervision of a health care professional. You should not attempt to do a diet like this on your own!


As far as breast feeding has been going, I've still been pumping mostly, but sometimes I want the close connection that breast feeding allows you & so I'll attempt to feed her. Sometimes she does really great, other times it's a struggle the whole feeding.


So, what have I been eating that is Elimination Diet friendly?

Chocolate Cinnamon Millet Flour Pancakes
Adapted from The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook's Rice Flour Pancakes

1 cup millet flour
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1 tsp corn-free baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp guar gum
1/4 tsp sea salt
1.5 cups almond or rice milk
1 flax egg: 3 tbsp ground flaxseeds whisked w/3 T boiling water
2 T melted virgin coconut oil + more for cooking
1 T agave nectar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 scoop Amazing Grass Chocolate Greens Superfood

Toppings (optional):
1 chopped apple
almond butter
maple-flavored agave nectar

In a medium bowl, mix the dry ingredients together. Whisk the wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and gently mix together. Heat a 10" skillet over medium heat. Add a little virgin coconut oil for cooking (note: this is optional. I found that I didn't need it. When used, it creates a "crispier" pancake, but when not used, it's a "fluffier" pancake). When the pan is hot, add about 1/4 cup batter. Cook for about 1-2 minutes or until top begins to bubble, flip and cook for a minute or so more on the other side. Repeat this process until all the batter has been used. Top each pancake with almond butter, chopped apple & maple-flavored agave nectar.


I still haven't gotten out much to walk, due to having a constantly inconsolable and fussy baby. However, the weight continues to be coming off.

5 Days Post-Baby
Wt Lost Since Delivery: 14 lbs
3 Weeks Post-Baby
Wt Lost Since Delivery: 27 lbs

A note about my weight loss:
Some people have voiced concerns about how much weight I've lost so quickly and I want to be clear here, that I'm doing absolutely nothing to lose this weight. This is what my body is naturally doing.

I am eating healthy & resting & walking when I can, but my walks are usually 5-15 minutes in length. Though I wish I could go running, my body simply isn't ready. I am still healing. I just delivered a baby!

When I got pregnant, I had some weight to lose. I had just started The Endo Diet 2-months prior to getting pregnant, which was a drastic change from the binge-sugar/fast-food diet that I was eating for years and years. While pregnant, my diet was tweaked by the Kinesiologist to avoid all things soy, sugar & corn. I also developed Gestational Diabetes and changed more eating habits, but was still maintaining a 2,000 calorie diet. All of this was done under the supervision of my Kinesiologist, Diabetes Educators & Endocrinologist. Because I changed all of these things while pregnant, I started to lose some of the weight while pregnant, which is why I only gained 5 lbs.

So, now that the baby is delivered, the weight that was lost while pregnant, still continues to come off. Again, I'm doing nothing to make this happen. I am continuing to eat a 2,000 calorie whole-foods diet under the supervision of my Kinesiologist.


Now, for some cuteness...
Does this diaper make my butt look big? :)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Weekly Wrap-Up

Popular Posts
My top 5 most popular posts from this week. Check them out, if you missed them!

  1. 2-weeks Postpartum: Sleep Training, Breast-Feeding & Treats
  2. Meet Adelyn Anna: My Hypnobirthing/Waterbirth Story
  3. 10 Tips to Control Gestational Diabetes without Medication

  4. Healthy Fast Food...In a Glass
  5. A Moment of Realness: Post-Baby Blues/Guilt

Blogger Love - Referrals
A big THANK YOU and shout out to the following bloggers, who were the top referring sites this week! Check out their blogs, if you haven't yet!

  1. The Fowble Five
  2. Daily Garnish
  3. I Can Do It Myself

Blogger Love - My Favorite Posts
These are posts written by fellow bloggers. These are my favorites from this week!
  1. How To Make Your Own Protein Powder Mix @ Daily Garnish
  2. Experiment #3: Puffy Fingerpaint @ I Can Do It Myself
  3. Great Homeschooling Links @ The Homeschool Classroom
Just For Fun - Popular Search Words
These are the top keywords that people have used this week to find my blog.

  1. Can You Use Agave Nectar If You Have Gestational Diabetes?
  2. Can't Control Gestational Diabetes
  3. Father IceCream
  4. Foodie the Gummy Bear
  5. Freshman 30
  6. Gestational Diabetes Numbers Sometimes High

Just For Fun - Countries Visited
People from all over the world find my blog! Here are the countries that visited this week (besides the USA).

  1. Canada
  2. Germany
  3. United Kingdom
  4. South Korea
  5. United Arab Emirates
  6. Cayman Islands
  7. Latvia
  8. New Zealand
  9. Philippines
A special THANK YOU to all my readers! YOU are the reason I write this blog. YOU make all the effort worth it! I am grateful for each and every one of you. 
Amykinz, Foodie4Healing

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

2-Weeks Postpartum: Sleep Training, Breast-Feeding & Treats

We started Babywise's sleep training method today. We want baby A to learn to put herself to sleep and not rely on rocking or us holding her to fall asleep. She did great today! Just a little fussing at each nap time, but nothing too horrible. Hopefully she's a fast learner, like her sister was! 

Breast-feeding has become a bit much for me. It's hard being the only one able to feed her in the middle of the night. And she isn't a consistent eater. She eats about every 2.5-3 hrs, but sometimes she'll eat for 10 minutes on one side and be done, whereas other times she'll eat for 20 minutes on each side. And sometimes, she doesn't want to eat at all, she just wants to play with it. It's sooooo frustrating. Also, it takes her 10 minutes to drink 3 oz of a pumped bottle, but can take an hour to eat the same 10 minutes off of me. Which was fine when I only had the one child, but I have a 4 year old that wants my attention now, too. It also never really feels like she's fully emptying by breasts. She is gaining weight, though. Lastly, I don't think she latches properly, so my nipples never fully heal and it hurts on one side the entire time I'm feeding her. Also, she latches and then let's go repeatedly during a feeding. All of these things are leading up to this... rather than giving up breast-feeding entirely (which I'm tempted to do, if it weren't for the health benefits and calorie deficit for me) I'm going to try to work up to pumping mainly and only breast-feeding a few feedings out of the day. This wasn't an easy decision for me to come to and mother-guilt always plays a role. But the bottom line is this... breast-feeding should be an enjoyable and bonding experience. If it's leaving me frustrated and quite honestly not particularly liking my newborn in those moments, then it might not be the best option. At least with pumping, she'll still be getting the health benefits of my milk. And we'll be better able to bond. 


My sweet tooth has really kicked up a notch this week. Not sure why exactly, but I've been indulging regularly in healthy treats like the following...

We used Averie's Vegan Coconut Oil Chocolate recipe as the chocolate in this recipe. It gives them a chewier consistency, right out of the freezer. Delicious! Also, it's kinda hard to see in this photo, but my hubby sprinkled some sea salt on the top of some of these before freezing. Yum!

We've also used the above coconut oil chocolate recipe to make chocolate bars and just added coconut flakes to it. Reminds me of a healthy version of an Almond Joy.


As I mentioned before, the weather in MN has been less cooperative for my daily walk. So, for now I'm just breast-feeding as my form of burning calories. I'll resume walking once the weather looks a little nicer. 

My abdominal muscles seem to have gone from 4 finger-widths separated to only 2 finger-widths. Woo-Hoo!

And here's this week's post-baby body progress:

5 Days Post-Baby
Wt Lost Since Delivery: 14 lbs
2 Weeks Post-Baby
Wt Lost Since Delivery: 24 lbs

I haven't been this size since my freshman year of college! Woo-Hoo!

And here's a recap of the plan:

Nutrition-wise not much has changed. I have cut out most dairy products, since I know that dairy can cause issues when breast-feeding. I may, at some point, need to go gluten-free as well, since my baby girl is already having some GI issues. But, we'll see what the Kinesiologist says. I am slowly working my way back to The Endo Diet. I will still probably keep hormone-free, grass-fed white meats in my diet, but eliminate all red meat. I have been a bit relaxed on allowing some honey back into my diet, mainly for my lemon/honey hot waters, since I'm still battling the residual effects of Bronchitis. I will be eliminating it again and sticking only with my stevia & agave nectar. I'm still avoiding all soy & corn. I will, of course, be re-tested for all foods, once my hormone levels start to return back to normal. The reality is: I still have endometriosis, PCOS & an increased risk for Type 2 Diabetes. Eating this way is a lifestyle for me, not a diet.

Fitness-wise I will be slowly working up to a regular workout routine. For now, breast-feeding is my main form of burning calories!

1 Week Post-Partum: slow to moderate walking everyday (or most days) as I feel up to it strength-wise

4 Weeks Post-Partum: begin doing pelvic tilts & leg slides and gradually increasing to crunches and/or sit-ups, as my abdominal gap starts to close.

6 Weeks Post-Partum: start introducing cardio classes again (such as Zumba/Kickboxing/etc) and begin the C25K running program (as my midwife allows).

3 months Post-Partum: start introducing toning/stretching classes again (such as Yoga)

5 months Post-Partum: start Jillian Michaels' circuit training

I'd like to make a disclaimer that this plan can change at any point in time. (That goes for what I'm eating, too.) I may move things up or later on this list, depending on my body and on how I feel. For instance, walking to the park the other day with baby in the Moby Wrap was too much for my body at this point, so I'll stick to pushing her in the stroller for now. The key is to gradually add things back in and to only do the things which I enjoy. If any of these things starts to feel like a "have to" then I'll back off on it.