Hi, there! Happy Sunday!
How’s the weather for you?! Erie is experiencing a weird mid-winter warm up after we were hit by a ton of snow earlier this week. I’m not complaining though! I’m counting down the days til summer.
I’ve been a tiny bit down in the dumps lately when it comes to my food and weight relationship. I feel I am honestly eating the healthiest I have ever been eating in my entire life. A lot of my “down time” is in the kitchen prepping meals and planning what we enjoy throughout the week. So, it saddens me to think I am eating some of the best food choices I can and I continue to hold onto unwanted weight.
I have been a raw foodie, vegetarian, omnivore, low carb, no carb, and just about everything in between. My goal for this year was to completely transition to veganism, but I am currently putting a stop on that due to hormone resetting.
I’ll get more into the hormone reset in just a second, but I wanted to touch base on something beforehand. I am not a fan of labels — at all. And, I feel as a society right now, we are SO focused on labeling ourselves and others. Not only does that put a restraint on whatever it is we’re labeling but it also puts a restraint on our own understanding. Let’s talk about the label “vegan” for a moment. I absolutely would love to become a vegan. I have met people who are vegan who are so understanding of meat-eaters and really just want to share the awful treatment of animals to broaden the meat-eater’s understanding on where their food comes from. Honestly, being vegan to me is one of the truest forms of connection to food we can have. A lot of people lose sight that the hamburger on their plate was actually a walking, breathing, living thing before….because we don’t see that part. But, in researching becoming a vegan and foods I would need to avoid or banish from my kitchen, I had a real problem with honey being labeled as a non-vegan item. *Before any vegans feel the need to comment on why it is not vegan, I totally get why it isn’t a vegan food* but I would never give up honey. I once ended up on this vegan forum asking questions about why honey truly cannot be consumed (what if a person has inflammatory issues, needs the anti bacterial properties of it [this girl right here]). All I was met with was anger, lecturing, and was told how I would never be a VEGAN if I continued to eat honey EVEN IF I cut out ALL other animal products. This to me is ridiculous. I source and will continue to source my honey from local bee-keepers, and I refuse to buy honey in the grocery store as this is usually from industrialized bee-keeping or bee hives that mistreat their bees. Does this mean I will NEVER be a vegan? No. I would just do it on my own terms (aka include honey).
I feel many people take this purist approach to whatever their diet may be, and it makes others who are experimenting feel defeated, or it makes the end goal almost seem unobtainable. At least, that has happened to me.
Honestly, I could write an entire blog on my problem with labeling, and perhaps I will in the future. Right now though, have you seen Cooked on Netflix with Michael Pollan? I started watching this the other day, and it really resonated with me since I am currently trying to reset my hormone balance in my bod. Cooked takes you on a series of trips around the world talking about the elements found within foods, and it is honestly a call for people to get more connected with their food and food sources. I believe home cooking and whole foods is really becoming important again. People want to feel connected to their food. People want to know where it’s coming from. People want quality food free of the junk we’ve been consuming for the last four decades or so.
Cooking has become a large part of my home life in the last two to three years, and I only see myself cooking more, experimenting more, and learning more about home cooked meals so that I may grow a family with strong values when it comes to what they’re putting into their bodies. One of my favorite quotes from “Cooked” so far is in the “Water” episode where the one woman says, “People think life is out there, but really, life is here,” as she’s mixing up a large stew in the kitchen. THAT IS SO TRUE, RIGHT??? I mean, our entire life is based off of food and, especially, the kind of food we put into our bodies. How important of a job is cooking?! It’s absolutely imperatives that we know how to do it.
I am embarking on a Hormone Reset Diet (eep!). I don’t like using the term diet, BUT I am currently eliminating certain foods in order to heal my gut and hormone levels. Mike and I recently purchased a half cow because, yes, we DO eat meat. We had significantly cut back on our meat consumption, and it only made sense to me to have grassfed, organic meat on hand for the year to avoid growth hormones and other additives that could ultimately harm how our bodies regulate hormones and other systems. After purchasing the cow, I really began researching ways I could reset my hormones. If you didn’t catch my post last fall about my egg donation, I was injecting myself with hormones in order to help a family with fertility issues. Long story short, my hormones were a bit out of wack August to October, and I didn’t continue making the best choices food-wise after which led to about a 10-13 pound weight gain. I decided it was time to start healing myself even further…after all, my New Year’s intention WAS purification!
The Hormone Reset Diet is, of course, a book that is grabbing a lot of people’s attention. It honestly works as an elimination diet with a paleo twist. Being paleo, to me, is not my end goal. I think paleo has this connotation that one can eat red meats, bacon, and almond flour EVERY meal and that’s fine….Okay, I’ll save my rants on diets for another post. BUT, currently I need to cut the following foods which somewhat align with the paleo mindset:
- processed foods
- starches (minus sweet potato)
- sugar subs (ie, maple syrup, honey) but guess what, I’m still eating the honey (go figure)
- refined oils
- food coloring
Things I need to include for 30 days:
- lean and grassfed meats
- bone broth
This is to be a 30 day reset, and then you slowly start to introdue foods back into your diet. So far, I feel less bloated and I’ve lost about four pounds in just six days. While this is good, I feel like I am really restricting myself which is not something I would ever want to continue.
Below are two recipes I am giving-a-go for the next 30 days! Have any awesome sauerkraut recipes to share?? Send them my way please! Hoping the rest of your weekend is relaxing, and I definitely want to write a post on *my* take on diet labels. I’ll share some links to some info I’ve come across for each that I find interesting. Peace!
Ruby Red SauerKraut from Feastingathome.com
Fermented veggies are great for gut health and are probiotic in nature.
Bone Broth is making a resurgence! Take your meat bones (prefferably grass fed and organic), throw them in the crockpot with with veggies and seasonings, cover with filtered water, and set on low for 24 hours. Bone Broth carries collagen which helps heal your gut and is extremely nutrient dense. It is said to help hair, skin, and nails, too.