Category: HEALTH TIPS

LIFESTYLE FACTORS and MEMORY

Memory loss is one of the declining brain health issue and unfortunately, one in three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or dementia. There are many factors that impact our brain health and our memory. Below infographic shows the most important factors that affects our memory and the good news is we have control over all these factors. We can slow or even reverse our memory problems. All we have to do is to pay attention to those factors that affects our brain health. The earlier we start addressing them, the better for us.

Source: ELISABETH BOHAM, MD, MS, RD

My NEP 11 – My Eating Protocol (Plan)

(GLUTEN FREE, GRAIN FREE, DAIRY FREE, STARCH FREE, FRUIT FREE, PALEO, KETO)

Hello!

Today, I’d like to tell you a little bit about the insights that I got from my doctor (from yesterday’s visit). Why my weight lost slowed down, why I still do not have enough energy to do cardio in the mornings and more.

First, weight loss: As you know by now, I am on some kind of an ‘elimination diet’ where most food groups are eliminated for me for 3 months. I will not go into details since I did it in my previous posts. You can read it here . I lost 8 lb in the first 2 weeks, than only 2 lb in the next 2 weeks. When I asked this to my doctor, (I have Dr B. (he) and her associate doctor Dr V. (she) 😊 Yesterday, I talked to Dr V. ) she said it is normal to loose weight fast in the first few weeks and then slow down. We reviewed all the basics. Basics:

  • Diet
  • Supplements
  • Sleep
  • Water intake (Drink only what you are thirsty for, do not force to drink more than your body needs)
  • Enough protein (0 blood type needs high protein)
  • Exercise (mornings are better for my body type to handle stress and prevent stagnation)
  • Rest when your body needs, do not push. But distinguish the lack of motivation to do things ex: exercise and lack of energy

I need to work on sleep and exercise.

Exercise: Ideally, I need to do 45 minutes cardio or strength trainings in the morning, every day. I can not do it. Some weeks, I feel motivated, have a little energy to get me started to move even though not 45 minutes cardio. I actually shared my exercise routines for those days here and here. Solution: Do what ever I can every morning; if I can not do every morning, every other day or every third day. May be, my body needs rest/recovery in between exercises. So I will listen to my body and do as much as it lets me do. I will also start with walking or any other low impact exercises I can do. I may do shorter sessions of cardio too, we’ll see. Here the important question is: Is it my body or is it my lack of motivation/laziness that prevents me from exercising? I have to be honest with myself and act accordingly. I am sure, when I increase my movement/exercise, the weight loss will continue.

Today I started with a 20-minute Beginner Pilates. I liked her video. Very informative, explaining the basics of Pilates while doing the workout. It felt good! I felt my abs and legs work even though they looked like very simple moves. 👍👍👍 for me for today’s exercise part. yayyyy

After the exercise, I sat down to share my latest updates with you but I felt like, I am running low on my fuel in my body. I did not feel hungry yet though. So I went to kitchen to make my protein shake and while I am there, my jasmine green tea. Don’t forget, you steep green tea leaves for 3 minutes, and can use up to 3 times. I prepare my protein shake in a 16 oz, filtered water. I do not like or feel the need to make it in a nut milk. I prepare and finish it right away anyway. Taste is not important, and I am not saying it tastes bad too. I just do it, because I need to. I actually realized that I do not like almond milk or coconut milks. Coconut milk makes me feel dehydrated, interesting right? Almond milks taste weird, nothing like almond taste. Of course, I am talking about the ones I buy from the market even though the best, organic versions. But few days ago, I made almond milk at home with just mixing 1 tbs almond butter in one cup water in blender (this part is important) it tasted really good, almondy (made up word 😊) and creamy. So why buy with those additional unnecessary ingredients. Actually, I remember I made my own almond milk few years ago. It was easy:

  • soak almonds overnight,
  • remove the skins, (some people don’t)
  • blend in high speed blender with water,
  • strain in nut milk bag or thin dish towel (you can make almond meal with the pulp)

It tasted good, light but creamy. Lasted only few days though – became sour. The one I bought stayed a week or so. So, that is a 🤔 (hmmm, ??!!) for me. I love emojis 💖.

Sleep: We all know what we need to do for a good sleep hygiene. I guess it would not hurt to review here real quick. First, know that, good sleep is not only necessary for your cognitive functions and health but also for weight loss since it is a powerful tool for stopping cravings of sugar and carb (quick energy that your body seeks). Here are some ideas for a good night sleep 😴:

– Wind down may be an hour or so before your real sleep time. Examples:

1- avoid bright light, tv, phone, ipad etc that can alter your brain’s sleep chemicals.

2-Read something soothing; write down your worries; write down your TO DO list for the next day to empty your mind so that you would not be laying in bed thinking about what you need to do next day or the problem you have . It will help you go into a state of relaxation.

3- Get a massage; stretch; take an Epsom salt bath (fill the bath tub with hot water as hot as you can stand, add 2 cups of epsom salt, 1/2 cup baking soda (alkalizing) and 5-10 drops of lavender oil (cortisol and stress reducing) before bed.

4-Dark, quiet bedroom & no clock tick tocks. I bought those blackout curtains and they make a huge difference. If you are like me, even low level of sounds like tick tocks of a clock, ac/heater sound may prevent me to go into sleep. So I try to manage those as much as I can.

-They say do not eat within 3 hours of sleep. I usually eat my dinner between 5:30-6:30 pm depending on my hunger. Sometimes I get a little hungry before bed time and if I do not eat anything (usually little hand full of soaked nuts or a small piece of protein meat) I can not sleep. So listen to your body. I would not recommend any carb or sweets to eat though.

-Did you know that a little (20 min.) of exposure of sunlight, preferably first thing in the morning, triggers your brain to release melatonin that helps you sleep well? When I heard about this, I started to get out to my balcony every day, first thing in the morning and enjoy the sun. I also open my windows and balcony door, every morning for fresh air flow.

-They say low room temperature in bedroom is good for better sleep but with that said, if I feel cold, I can not sleep. So, I try to keep myself warm under my 100% cotton comforter. Sometimes I wear socks until I get warm than take them off.

-Try a relaxation, guided imagery. There are lots of free apps.

-Drink herbal teas. Chamomile, lavender etc.

-You can also get supplements and herbs under your doctor’s care. Dr B gave me melatonin. I am sure there are other herbs and supplements but I only would like to mention the one I am using. The dosage is important too. So please talk to your doctor about these.

Well, I hope these sleep tips helps.

I am thinking to change my title of these series going forward, should I? What do you think? Is there anything that you are curious about my current eating protocol? Please share your thoughts. I need your feedback. Thank you.💖

Just like trees, I am also amazed by clouds. This is one of the cloud picture that I took. You can see my other cloud pictures in my PHOTOGRAPHY section.

immydr-New Mexico

My NEP 10

My New ‘O Blood Type’ Eating Protocol

(GLUTEN FREE, GRAIN FREE, DAIRY FREE, STARCH FREE, FRUIT FREE, PALEO, KETO)

Good morning! It is almost 8 am here :)

As I promised you, I will tell you about batch cooking. Probably a 2-day chicken based recipe. Before doing that, I’d like to share my idea that came to me this morning. You see, I have a lot of things (recipe, experience, health tips etc…) that I would like to share with you. Every day, through out the day, I have all these ideas (what, how, and when I can share) coming to me and I can not keep up with them. :) Lately, I’ve been thinking about posting a sample meal plan for my current eating protocol for a while. I wanted to wait until I can post all my recipes and than present you the meal plan chart with links to the recipes. But today I thought ‘Why wait?’ The recipes that I prepare right now are soo easy but of course delicious, prepared with simple-everyday ingredients and compliant to my current eating protocol along with other paleo, dairy free, keto, grain free, gluten free, starch free diet followers out there. I think, the specialty of my recipes comes from its SIMPLICITY, WHOLE FOOD, NUTRITOUS, EASY TO PREPARE, and still DELICIOUS characteristics. You can make different dishes from same ingredients/spices with totally different tastes. If it sounds hard to accomplish by now, it means you did not read my posts talking about this. Please check out my MY NEP 4 and MY NEP 7 posts. There are two ways to do this and these posts tells you all about that.

I would like to update my existing Meal Plan that I posted about two years ago. I am eating very similar to that list except some of the ingredients. For example; I can not do tomato sauce for pasta, any kind of peppers, fruits, oats etc. If you can, great, that list will be perfect for you. Because the recipes, that I briefly describe there, are really delicious, and nutritious. I feel like I repeat these words a lot but that is what my posts are for. While they please you with their taste in your mouth, they also have to heal your body. Your body needs to thank you for every bite of the food you eat, drink and smell!

Have you ever heard of Mark Hyman? He says “Food is the code that programs your biology. You can literally upgrade or downgrade your biological software with every single bite.” I love his approach to food. I have been following his approach to health and read his books for a while. In previous articles, he was explaining how he understands that it is not easy to give up on sugar, carbs and other damaging/addictive foods and the guilt is not ONLY on us. It is mostly the ingredients that are put in our food. As you can tell, I am talking about the pre-packed, ready to eat kind of foods. There are lots of factors that affects our food quality and he talks about them in his above mentioned article (his quotes can take you to his article) . He also says “Keep in mind that we are all genetically unique and need to find a way of eating that matches our needs.”. This is what I realized when I first started to go Dr. B. This was the answer to my years of suffering (questioning) that I am talking about in my first post of these series My New Eating Protocol = My NEP.

Ok, let’s go back to 2-day batch cooking. So the day before yesterday, I wanted to make chicken dishes so the night before I took out my chicken drumsticks (2 packs) and chicken thigh (1 pack) from the freezer and put them in fridge to thaw. I do my grocery shopping weekly, and I put my meat items (turkey, chicken) in freezer if I am not going to use them within few days.

Next day afternoon, around 5 pm, I prepared one tray and my husband prepared the other tray and baked them at the same time. I could do them myself too, but I have such a supporting, loving hubby he helps me as much as he can so that I can save my energy to heal myself, to not exhaust for the time being. I still can get tired easily. Anyways, my 2 days worth lunch/dinner meals were ready by dinner time, around 6:30 pm.

You will see that one tray will be well seasoned, spiced and the other one will be milder chicken recipe.

BAKED CHICKEN

Ingredients:

2 packs organic chicken drumsticks

1 pack organic chicken thigh (boneless)

spices (chili powder, turmeric, salt, lots of paprika, and garlic powder)

1 medium size zucchini, cut in big chunks

2 small carrots, peeled and cut in big chunks

1 half, big red onion (I used the other half for a salad), cut in big chucks

oil for cooking in high temperatures

10 fresh garlic cloves

Instructions:

My husband prepared his spice mix (chili powder, turmeric, salt, lots of paprika, and garlic powder) in a shallow square plate and added enough oil.

He dipped in all the drumsticks one by one, making sure that they are all well coated and placed them on the tray. Towards the end, I added a little bit more oil to his dipping dish (since his hands were all messy) for the last few drumsticks. So you can always adjust the spice and oil amount.

He also spread almost about 10 fresh garlic cloves (not peeled) to the tray. That is the first tray.

In the meantime, I placed the chicken thighs on parchment lined tray. I salted them really good on both sides, then sprinkled paprika on both sides again.

I spread the vegetables around the chicken thighs. Sprinkled salt over the vegetables and drizzled oil over all the chicken and vegetables.

Baked in 400F pre-heated oven about 1-1.5 hours. I set my alarm for 30 minutes and flip over all the chicken drumsticks and baste (pour some of their juice over them) by spooning from the tray. I flipped over the chicken thighs too. Then set the alarm for another 30 minutes. After that, depending on the size of the chickens, you can keep checking until they are done.

Did you know that it takes much more longer time to cook organic chicken than the conventionally farmed ones?

We ate half of the drumsticks for dinner. Next day, few drumsticks and a thigh with vegetables for lunch and the rest in the evening for dinner. I just changed the side dishes for each meal. When I was heating the last portion of the baked chicken thigh and vegetables, I added the leftover boiled peas to the vegetables. I could heat it up and serve separate but this way it soaked all the juices, spices of the chicken and was much more tasty.

Quick tip for you: When we preheat our oven, we actually turn on the broil (making sure there is nothing in the oven) and it heats up to desired temperature much more faster. Then turn on the oven with the temperature you want. Isn’t it great? My husband figured it out.

I will see you in my next post. Please let me know what you think about them, if you try these chicken recipes.

Below you will see a post which also mentions Dr Mark Hyman and a recipe inspired from his smoothies.

Raw Chia, Hemp & Flax Seed Bon Bons

My NEP 9

My New ‘O Blood Type’ Eating Protocol

(GLUTEN FREE, GRAIN FREE, DAIRY FREE, STARCH FREE, FRUIT FREE, PALEO, KETO)

Good morning!

It is a beautiful, sunny day today. You know what it means, I have to get out there and have a little walk and enjoy the nature’s beauty and soak in the sun. Don’t get me wrong, unfortunately, I am not one of those who can walk/hike for hours and hours, not yet. Mine is only about 30 minutes but still great. Have you ever stopped under a tree, looked up to the tree, leaves, the sky through the leaves, the colors of each leaf and then blue sky then another part of tree and so on. It is mesmerizing! All the colors, shape, their movement through the wind, the life it gives you, the color therapy it provides you, the hope it fills you with… Remember my HOPE TREE ?

I wanted to share few things with you today but this morning I shared a little insight (my own way of handling things for now. They may change in the future.) with a PCOS sufferer (on Facebook group) and I thought to myself, why don’t I share them here too.

This is what I wrote:

‘Normally, I rarely comment in this group but I wanted to share my story with you to let you know that I know how you feel, you are not alone. For the last 20 years I’ve been struggling with sweets and carbs. I gained weight gradually every year, my health (physical, mental and emotional) got worse every year. I knew I had to do a diet change and exercise, but I did not have any will power. I continued eating those delicious but harmful deserts to be happy (emotional eating problem). I was not happy with myself but was not strong enough to put an end to it. I tried so many diets but did not last more than 10 days.

Long story short, in August I learned that I have bigger health issues. I found a naturopathic doctor and he put me on a very strict limited diet (lots of protein and some of the vegetables – that’s it. No dairy, no starch, no fruit, no grain, no night shades vegetables etc) for 3 months. I remember during our first meeting w/my doctor, I said, I love cheese, I will finish them first and than start the diet. I went home, checked the fridge and realized I have 1 week worth of cheese. I told my husband ‘you enjoy these I will start tomorrow cold turkey otherwise it will not work for me’. I want to stop and prevent the future health issues in my body.

I am on day 25, lost 10 lb. My husband is not following the same diet with me but obviously eats when I cook what I cook.

My suggestions to you:

1-Journaling, or finding another way to vent. My way is to share my struggles and recipes/meals on my blog, kind of journaling but also sharing with those who are struggling like me.

2-Set yourself a goal with hope. Right now, my goal is to finish the 3 months with this diet. My hope is since I did so well, my diet will get a little less strict. If it does not, oh well, I will think about it when I come to that bridge.

3Take the control in your hands. In the past I was also blaming my husband because even though I was trying to cut out gluten and bread, he was eating French bread (I loveeee ) during breakfast, I could not resist and I’d eat too. Now, he still eats, I do not. My doctor said it is the MINDSET. Once you set it, it is much easier.

4-Tell yourself POSITIVE things. You may call this affirmations, or any other thing. I tell myself when I feel down, helpless “Just 3 months, this will pass, hang in there. Wait few more hours or days, this emotional roller coaster, craving of macaron, period pain, bloating etc will all pass. God will help me” You know yourself best. What works to strengthen you, use those words.

5-Sometimes you need to find your own solutions. I looked for recipes that is complaint with my diet, does not exist. So I developed recipes myself. I am lucky in this part because, I already love and do develop recipes. Still hard sometimes, but works.

6-Turn it into a challenge or fun, or both whichever works for you to continue. I do both :) Challenge is not to give up and develop delicious, nutritious and complaint recipes. Fun part is to (sometimes taking picture of them and) share them on my blog. So it is a little bit more tolerable.

I wish you all the strength, will power and the mindset you need. You can do this if I can do it. You are not alone. I hope my blog may help you overcome some of your own struggles and/or hopefully be an inspiration.’ 

Sometimes, people may help you realize:

  • what you have,
  • what you’ve accomplished without knowing it,
  • what you want/don’t want to do

The first two, I realized today when I was sharing above written comment, what a long one! What I have is the 6 insights that I shared. I was not aware that I had these until I’ve put them into words. Accomplishments are my weight loss ( I was going to say effortless but that is not true. Yes, I do not show much effort to exercise but most of my energy is going to figuring out what I will eat and still be happy which is getting easier every day) and improving blood sugar levels.

The third one, I realized again when I was chatting with another person on another Facebook group, for my ETSY shop support. YES, I have one where I, my mother and sister sell our hand made/knit items. My sister is a great talent for her patchwork creations. It is fairly a new one. I actually opened it in the beginning of 2019 but could not spend much time on it. Now, hopefully, I will put in more time and list all the beautiful baby vests and other hand knitted items my mom did. So, if we go back to what I want/don’t want to do, we were talking about branding and identity of my shop. This also made me think about my blog. While I am sharing my health struggles, insights, recipes with you, I also want to share all my knowledge with you. While I am talking (writing) to you, I want you to learn everything that I know from health perspective (what is healthy, not healthy, natural remedies…) to recipes with easy tips etc. I want to share what kind of kitchen tools ex: oven tray I use (stainless steel, NEVER aluminum), why I use it and where I found it. Because believe me, I looked for it a long time and now I have 3 sizes and I am sooo happy with them. I use them almost everyday, especially now that I am eating lots of protein and vegetables everyday, baking in the oven is the best way to go as far as batch cooking. Well, for us it is at usually 2 days worth of cooking. For one, I can get bored of the same dish easily and two, I do not believe reheating food more than once is healthy. I want to have a recipe book in the future, e-book or paperback (not decided yet) because beside this blog, I will be leaving one more thing to this world when I pass to the other. What I want also explains what I do not want for now, I guess 😉

I took a little break to drink my protein shake with immune boosting powders. While I was drinking it, I remembered two more things to share with you addition to my above suggestions.

2 things that I would like to add to my 6 insights:

1- When you take your supplements, tell yourself that they will heal you, help you get healthy, more energy, happiness, motivation for pursuing your dreams etc. This is part of positive thinking. It helps me to like taking supplements, especially if they are too much. Why not take them happily vs unwillingly, feeling miserable and with all the other negative feelings you have. I think it would do more harm than good.

2- Ooopps , I forgot this one. I am gone blank. I will come back to this and update.

On my next post, I will give you an example of 2-day worth batch cooking.

See you there!

P.s: Another relevant, short post for you to read .

How to Change Unwanted Behaviors (Habits)

immydr- How to Change Unwanted Behaviors (Habits)

My NEP 8

My New ‘O Blood Type’ Eating Protocol

(GLUTEN FREE, GRAIN FREE, DAIRY FREE, STARCH FREE, FRUIT FREE, PALEO, KETO)

Today, I feel good physically and emotionally, so I am very grateful and HAPPY :) They say if you have your health, you are a billionaire. God forbid, if you have ears but can’t hear, have eyes but can’t see … wouldn’t you give millions or billions (assuming that you have it obviously) to have those senses. I already have them, so I should be very thankful for this wealth that I have been granted and I should take good care of them (my physical and mental health). I did not do enough in the past, because even though I knew gluten or sweets were not good for my body, I LOVED the taste or the fake pleasure it gave me, so I continued to eat. I did not exercise, had a very sedentary life style because I was lazy. Now, I HAVE TO do them because my body is not able to tolerate it anymore, it is overwhelmed with the toxicity, inflammation, stress. I thought I was eating healthy, organic but I did not pay attention to my body’s signals. Even though I am eating healthy, why do I keep gaining weight every year? Why do I feel more tired, no motivation even depressive sometimes? The signs were there but I did not listen to them. At last, when these signs turn into a big health issues that makes me end up at a doctor’s office, then I do what I NEED TO DO for my health. Now, of course, I can not expect the decades of damages reverse in few months, that would not be realistic but I believe that human body is soo amazing and can heal, if God wills and I do my part. I learned that even though I eat clean and organic foods, if the food is not good for my body, it can be toxic to my body. If I was allergic, it would be very obvious but there are cases where your body can be sensitive to those foods or they can be mucus forming, inflammation causing to your body which are not good for your health. That is what I learned 25 days ago and changed my eating accordingly. Well, actually what I am doing right now is more like an elimination diet that we removed everything that can be damaging based on my blood type and physical symptoms (health issues). I weighed myself this morning and I lost 10 lb in 25 days. I did not believe it and got on the scale second time and Yes, 10 lb lighter ME! yayyyy

Few days ago, I was listening a podcast and I learned that human body has 200 trillions of cells and everyday millions of our cells die and millions of them renew itself . There is only one organ that always has the same cell numbers and never changes: Our brain cells. Everyday it does not matter how many brain cells die, new ones are created making up the same number. But the only enemy is ALCOHOL. It is the only factor that can reduce the brain cells number. When we drink alcohol until we get drunk, the damage that it makes to brain cells are not reversible. I don’t drink but I felt bad for those who does and I actually see this in my close circle. Yes, they may be older but still why? I can live may be up to my 80s, 90s or 100s (my great great grandmother that I’ve been named after lived until 105 years old) but why not with a great mental and physical health so that I can enjoy my life until the very end. Why be dependent on anyone? This part is very important too. One of the reason that I would like to be very healthy is I do not want to age badly and be dependent on anybody else: don’t want to be burden to anybody. I also want to enjoy the life. There are lots of things that I would like to do while I can. I don’t know how long I will live, but I would like to enjoy every day that I have left and work towards my dreams every day.

I was not really feeling all that well for 3-4 days physically and emotionally. When I am not well physically, It affects me emotionally and rationally too. I become agitated, pessimistic, depressive, ungrateful, bitter… I guess you get the idea. This is not in my hands though. It is a chain reaction. Anyways, those days are over now, in the last few days I feel much better. I am soo happy and express this to my husband and obviously he is very happy too because my misery effects him too. That is why he is my biggest supporter to get my health back and in the mean time his health too.

Now, let’s look at what I ate today.

Today’s Menu:

Breakfast: Leftover Chicken Soup

I, sometimes, do not want to eat eggs in the morning. In those days, leftover meals are great option.

Lunch: Leftover almond meal & coconut flour crusted carrots, zucchini and cauliflowers.

Last night, I wanted to make something different as a side for my baked wild salmon. I’ve put my usual vegetables; asparagus and broccoli on the same tray but on a separate tray I prepared the crusted vegetables. I simply mixed the 3 tbs almond meal and 3 tbs coconut flour with some spices (paprika, salt, fresh thyme. You can also add black pepper and cayenne). I whisked up 2 eggs in another shallow bowl. I dipped the vegetables in eggs first than in the meal/flour mix and spread on the parchment paper lined tray. My cauliflowers were in very small pieces, so I mixed the leftover eggs and meal/flour mix and combined with the cauliflower pieces . I’ve put spoonful of the mixture (4 rounds on the tray in the picture) on the tray. I drizzled some oil over them. It took a little longer to cook than the salmon but we still ate them afterwards. The salmon was already in the oven for 15 minutes by the time I finished the prep of these veggies.

They were tasty but not crunchy. Ohhh, if I could use parmesan cheese, they would be really crunchy and tasty but oh well. I prepared my plain yogurt sauce (almond milk yogurt and minced garlic with lots of salt) to dip in.

You can see that two of the salmon has black peppers on them, for my hubby and the other one is mine. Common preparation was: lemon juice, salt, drizzle of oil, paprika, turmeric and a little bit of cumin. I drizzled oil on the vegetables (asparagus and broccoli) and salt only on asparagus. Put in preheated oven (400F) for 25 minutes and it is ready. We like well done.

I prepared lemon juice, minced garlic, salt and oil dressing for the broccoli and drizzled on it when we were eating. This is my go to meal when I do not have any prepared food.

Dinner: Ground lamb sautéed with onion and spices, mixed with organic baby kale right before serving. My husband did not want kale ad spaghetti squash so he cracked 2 organic, grass fed eggs on his ground lamb+onion. We usually eat this for breakfast but he wanted to eat it tonight as dinner.

Left over spaghetti squash.

Vibrant green salad made with finely diced red onion, cucumber, parsley and avocado dressed with lemon juice, salt and drizzle of olive oil. Lately, I love this kind of finely chopped salads eaten with spoon instead of fork. Below you will see similar salad to tonight’s.

Here is my secret to this Vibrant Green, Refreshing Salad:

Base is always same:

  • Finely diced red onion or sweet onion
  • Finely diced cucumbers
  • Minced garlic if you want to eat that day
  • Lemon juice, olive oil, salt

Then you add finely sliced greens. In the picture it was organic Arugula and organic Spinach. I use whatever I have at home. Tonight it was parsley. Other days, I use kale, watercress etc. You can use only one green or mix in as many as you want. I think this is a great way to eat your dark leafy greens.

Well, it is time to wind down for me. I will drink my ginger tea and have my beauty and health sleep. Did you know that the sleep between 10 pm and 3 am is the most important time for your body?

Sleep well, sweet dreams!

My NEP 7

My New ‘O Blood Type’ Eating Protocol

(GLUTEN FREE, GRAIN FREE, DAIRY FREE, STARCH FREE, FRUIT FREE, PALEO, KETO)

Hello my friend! Today, I would like to share a little bit of my struggles and then a new recipe :).

As you know, from my previous posts of this My NEP (New  Eating Protocol) series, I am eating much more protein then I used to. In every meal, I am eating meat (white or red). I am kind of making myself to eat even though I do not want to sometimes because current 3 month new eating protocol requires me to do this. So, even though I do not feel like it, I am still eating a little bit (half palm size). For this reason, I am looking for refreshing ways to eat. I am going through recipes every day; the recipes that I have in my online library or through the web site. Ohhh, I have to tell you about my ‘online library’ . This is a great app that I can’t remember how I came across but it is part of my cooking life now. It is life saver! It keeps the recipes, the picture of the recipes and the website link if I need to refer back to. I have 476 recipes there that I saved, so you figure how long and how much I have been using it. I can add tags to recipes so that I can narrow my searches to ‘desserts’, ‘breakfast’, ‘lamb’, ‘almond meal’ or any other tag that I would like to create. It has meal plan tab where I can put the recipes in queue and then spread through out the week and see my weekly cooking/meal plan. It can also populate a shopping list for you based on that meal plan. Isn’t it great? The best thing is, it is FREE. Are you ready to learn about this amazing app? Here comes the drum rolls…It is called COPY ME THAT. This is your own recipe manager: Copy the recipe that you like from any website with a click (you can add a button to your task bar) then edit, organize, plan, and shop. Sometimes, it does not save the recipe but the link, still works great for me.

By the way, I am not affiliated with the apps, brand names (of food) and market place names that I share here. I am just sharing my experiences, findings with you.

This reminded me, remember, I shared the Kite Hill almond milk yogurt in MY NEP 4 with you saying that it is the best tasted one I found so far, but yesterday I realized that it tastes like a little heavy, oily to me now. It is interesting though because it does not have any oil in it . You can see the ingredients at the end of my Yogurt Sauce recipe post. May be my taste buds are changing which I believe strongly that this can happen to us. When I was in my early 20s, I was not able to eat any dish made with zucchini, now I love it all ex: zucchini fritters, zucchini noodles, creamy zucchini soup, grilled zucchini… you name it, I am sure I will love it. Or white cabbage. My mom used to make dishes with white cabbage when I was little, I did not like or eat them. Now I am craving Ground Turkey & Vegetables Stuffed Cabbage Leaves. I made them couple of days ago, they were soo good I wanted to eat them again and I made a similar dish with the left over cabbage and the other ingredients. Was it the same taste? Not at all, but still delicious. My husband ate 2 plates full of it. I mentioned towards the end of My NEP 4 post ‘even though you use the same spices, changes in the amount of each spice changes the taste.‘ , this is true for the method of cooking too. Last night, I wanted to eat Ground Turkey & Vegetables Stuffed Cabbage Leaves again. I had all the ingredients except the cabbage leaves. I had the cabbage but it was the inner part, and it did not have big enough leaves to stuff. So I cooked all the ingredients (in pan) in order:

1 onion, diced

3 cloves of garlic, minced

2 small shredded carrots

1-2 tsp Himalayan/Sea salt

1 lb ground turkey

Inner part of the Cabbage (almost half round cabbage) (sliced in big chunks)

1 cup riced cauliflower (traditionally we use rice but no grain/starch so cauliflower is great substitute here) I actually used 1.5 cups

Spices: paprika, cumin, black pepper (if you can use), lots of paprika. Traditionally, we use tomato paste but since it is not compliant to my protocol now, just to give it a little more reddish color, I added the paprika generously.

1/4 cup olive oil ( I actually used Avocado oil last night even though Dr B. says there is not enough research done on this oil, so he does not recommend it.)

The end result, DELICOUS! I served stuffed cabbage leaves with garlic+yogurt sauce and it was great. Last night, when I tried the garlic+yogurt sauce with this new dish, it did not compliment all that well, so I squeezed a little bit of lemon juice, vowwww, what a difference. You see ‘even though you use the same ingredients, changes in the method of cooking changes the taste.

I would like to share one more thing that I cherished before letting you go, my friend. I made this wonderfully fulfilling, satisfying Ginger, Coffee Butternut Squash Pudding and shared the recipe with you. I also shared the story of its creation in My NEP 4 post. What I did not share was when I prepared that squash for baking, I threw away the seeds but as soon as I did, I regretted it because those seeds were edible. I could roast and eat them. Later in the week, when I went shopping, I finally got the spaghetti squash (wonder why I say ‘finally’ 🤔, checkout the third paragraph of My NEP 4) and I did not throw out the seeds, yayyyy. I baked them while I was baking the spaghetti squash. I did not spend too much time cleaning them, did not even wash them when I scraped them from the squash. I’ve put them on the same tray lined with parchment paper and they were nicely roasted by the time squash was done. I sprinkled a little bit of Himalayan/Sea salt mix over them and enjoyed while I was watching my favorite tv series on amazon. Just like we used to eat roasted sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds with my parents, when we were watching tv back at home.

I am so grateful, thankful that I’ve spent/shared wonderful times with my parents, still do when we can get together. Thank God, they are still alive. There may be continents between us now, but the technology now makes it easier on us even if we are away from our loved ones. To be able to talk to them, see them whenever we want/need, just like they are near us is great comfort. Love you Mom and Dad 💖

immydr – On the way to Denver

STREETS OF DENVER

MY NEP 6

My New ‘O Blood Type’ Eating Protocol

I will share what I ate, what I did for exercise and may be what I liked/touched my heart or inspired me today… 

After I drank my protein shake (only 1 tbs of whey protein, and few immune boosting powder) I went through my bookmarks and saw this barre exercise. Oooo sounds exciting!

Today’s Exercise:

1- Barre Fitness When I first saw, It looked easy. Light weights and simple moves. Oh my God! When I started, I understood how much I was wrong. At some point, I had lo leave my 3 lb weights and do without them. It was only for 15 minutes but good workout. 👍

It is almost that time of the month for me, so I did not want to push myself too much so I did longer stretching today. I say stretching but I felt like all my muscles worked during some of the moves.

2- Whole Body Stretch Yoga This 30 minute stretch was really good. I did not feel how that 30 minutes pass. I realized that my legs need more stretching. I was more flexible before ( in the past). All the more reason for me to continue my stretches, I guess. By the way, these are not only stretches for me, as I said above, during some moves when I am trying to hold my balance, I use lots of muscles too. So that is good too.

Today’s Menu:

Gluten free, Grain free, Dairy free, Fruit free, Keto, Paleo

Breakfast: Wild Salmon Bruschetta w/Protein Pancake

Lunch: Baked organic chicken w/lots of spices (chili powder, paprika, salt, fresh thyme (I love this herb), fresh garlic) with peas, carrots and red onion

Dinner:

  • Ground lamb cooked w/red onions served over baked spaghetti squash;
  • Avocado salad w/diced sweet onion, cucumber & spinach-arugula mix greens;
  • Steam cooked green beans mixed w/dairy free yogurt, minced garlic and soaked, chopped up walnuts + salt to taste

What touched my heart/ inspired me…

I was trying to lay out a plan and timeline for myself to get better at my Etsy shop and blog while I was also thinking that there is a lot of things to learn. From where should I start? Where can I learn all these without any financial investment? I need help, guidance. Then guess what happened? When I was scanning through my Facebook page, I came across a post which invites those who are new to their business and need help/support. May be this is where I can get some help. It is a private group. When I looked at their posts and listened to some of their interviews, I realized that this is a good, friendly place where they are willing to help each other grow. Is my cry for help being answered? It certainly is a start and a HOPE for me. I think it is all it takes. If you have hope, the rest comes for you. When you loose hope, then you stop trying, working towards your goals, dreams. But with hope, you continue to dream, you feel stronger, you work harder/try harder. Even if you fail, you say ‘that is ok, I will try another way’. Once a wise man told me “Change your tactic if this one does not work out for you”. So I shall do!

My wish is to always have hope and to give hope to those who needs it. In this world we need each other to help/support for better days, happier days.

I shared another shot of this tree in my previous post, I would like to call this tree my HOPE TREE. There are endless possibilities in this world. Positive ones.

This is life! This is beauty! This is hope! 

immydr – Hope Tree

My NEP 5

My New ‘O Blood Type’ Eating Protocol

Hello there! You know, when I woke up this morning, I mentally prepared myself to drink my protein shake first thing when I get out of bed and do some exercise. There are things in life that we just have to do to be healthy so that we can pursue our responsibilities and DREAMS. My dream is to be mentally and physically healthy so that I can have the energy and motivation to do everything I want in this life before I move on to next. But for this, as once a wise man told me ‘I have to take care of myself so that I can take care of other things or people‘. So, I need my protein shake and my exercise even though shake does not really taste yummy (no fruits, milk etc) and I am always lazy to move/exercise even though I feel great after the exercise and I say to myself what a wonderful world, just kidding, but I really say to myself, I am glad I did exercise. When I was scrolling through the exercises that I saved to my bookmark, an idea popped up in my head; How about I also share the links of the exercises that I do with you. Wouldn’t you like that? I will share what I ate today, what I did for exercise and may be what I liked/touched my heart or inspired me… For instance; how do you feel when you look at this picture?

immydr – MY HOPE TREE

Isn’t it gorgeous? I can look at it bit by bit and enjoy all the colors. I have taken the picture of this tree from all the angles and they all look different yet breath taking. Do you see how the beautiful, clear, light blue sky compliments the colors of the leaves? This is life! This is beauty! This is hope! We have lots of beauties like this and more around us and we fail to see them, don’t we? Why? Because we are always thinking of our next step, not enjoying the moment. Live, cherish every moment!

So, you may be curious of what I did today as exercise. First, I wanted to do a little cardio. You should know by now that I can get bored easily with food and it is same with exercise, well may be everything in life so I need variety.

Today’s Exercise:

This morning I started with

1-Bouncing Exercise. I was not really able to jump as much as she can, but I did what I could and it was good enough for me. 10 minutes passed really quick and I enjoyed the information she provided while we were bouncing. Then I wanted to do some stretching. I liked this

2-Full Body Stretch a lot and did may be 4 times in the last 2 weeks. No talking, just soft music and cues ; you hear the count down (beeping) in the last 2 seconds of each move so you know you will move on to next stretch move. I wanted to finish with a little bit of ab=fab

3- 3 Minute Ab Workout Short, effective and enough for me :).

I hope you find these videos as enjoyable and useful as I did. Having a list of exercises and choosing from them based on your time, body’s need and mood is a wonderful thing, believe me. I have 100 bookmarks under my ‘Exercise’ folder and they are for all kinds of :

  • individual workouts ex: arms, legs, abs etc
  • whole body workouts
  • for various lengths of times
  • different kinds of exercises ex: yoga, Pilates, walking, kick boxing, weight training etc.

Right now, I am not intensely exercising, I am still healing and building up my strength. I am also trying to move/walk through out the day. If I am writing/working in front of a computer, I am trying to get up at least every 30-60 minutes just to move. Some say every 20 minutes, even stand up and sit down but I guess not my cup of tea yet.

Alright, I can hear some of you say, what about the lamb and chicken recipes? So I am thinking, instead of writing them as a general information, how about posting a recipe and a picture and then noting the variety of spices and cooking methods you can use based on that recipe? In the mean time, since I promised, I will leave you with one of my all time favorite Herbed Chicken and Brown Rice Pilaf recipes. You will see that these are not compliant with my current eating protocol but they are still delicious and healthy recipes worth to share.

By the way, remember I mentioned in my previous blog that my body needs protein (meat) even during the snack times. Not any more! This is good news. Because my digestion is improving and I can eat enough food to feel full until next meal time. I still eat a little snack (protein shake or soaked almonds/walnuts) to keep my blood sugar stable. My body is still adjusting. Yesterday I measured my blood sugar in the afternoon, it was 76 and I was feeling good; not hangry, weak or sleepy. But I must say, I am carefully choosing what I am eating and when I am eating. So I am in the third week (19. day), blood sugar is still going down but my body is adjusting too. Dr B. told me that I have to listen to my body; if it wants to go to bed at 8 pm, go to bed at 8 pm. If it wants afternoon nap, take an afternoon nap. I am healing my body right now. I have to listen to it and rest as much as I can so that I can heal.

Well, it is time for me to wind down and go to sleep 😴 See you in my next post. Would you please write in comments about what you think of my posts; what else would you like to learn; do you like my today’s ideas for future posts? Thank you, in advance, for your feedbacks. I do not need to share your comments with public if you don’t want to, just let me know.

My NEP 4

My New ‘O Blood Type’ Eating Protocol

Good morning! It is 9 am here. I prepared my jasmine green tea (Dr B. says, steep green tea leaves for 3 minutes and can use up to 3 times) and ready to write about my protein dishes. Are you ready?

It is all about simplicity, creativity and NUTRITIOUS SPICES. So I have limited spices to use but still the ones I usually use and like except black pepper (one of my salmon spice mix staple, but oh well…), cayenne pepper ( I like the heat), cinnamon and nutmeg ( used to use a lot for desserts but no dessert, no dessert spices, no problem, right?).

Actually, I just made a dessert yesterday. I can not continue without talking about it. So when I was baking my salmon in the oven, I thought I should bake the butternut squash along with it. I normally buy cut up butternut squash from Trader Joe’s but this time I wanted to make a spaghetti squash dish in leu of pasta. I am at Whole Foods, thinking to myself “Trader Joe’s did not have spaghetti squash last time, so let me get it from here now’. I went home and realized that I picked up a butternut squash instead 🤔. So, what to do with a butternut squash now? We just had a soup of it. Well, bake it and eat it as a dessert I say but no nutmeg and cinnamon. So, time to develop a new recipe. I wanted something creamy, pudding like but not too sweet, needs to have some kind of kick to it and don’t taste too much butternut squashy (made-up word). And I present you my new recipe:

Ginger, Coffee Butternut squash Pudding

(Sugar free, gluten free, grain free, dairy free, starch free, fruit free)

Serving= 1 cup

-Cut the butternut squash in half, bake in oven until soft enough to be mashed

-Scrape and mash one half of it and put in a blender

-Mix in room temperature coconut milk, and strong brewed coffee only enough to make it smooth and blend

-Add in 1 tbs ginger juice *

-Divide into 2 ramekins and put in refrigerator. Once cooled down, it takes the consistency of (almost) a pudding. Garnish with walnuts before serving.

*I keep freshly squeezed ginger juice, measured 1 tbs in freezer. I fill the ice cube trays with 1 tbs juice, freeze then put them in an unbleached, chlorine-free (TCF) greaseproof sandwich bags and than in freezer bags. I drink 1 tbs in the morning and evening after meals if I am sick to strengthen my immune system, to fight inflammation or bacterial infection ex: cystitis.

When it was in the ramekin, the top was smooth just like a pudding but when I’ve put it in my blue cup, that smoothness was gone hence the pic. I liked it in blue cup for colorful picture purposes.

My husbands reaction after first spoon was priceless “mmm, yummy…”. Mission accomplished! No sugar, no dessert spices but still YUMMY.

Yes, let’s go back to our today’s topic, How I prepare my protein dishes:

PROTEIN OPTIONS: Grass fed lamb/beef, organic turkey, organic chicken, wild salmon

SIMPLE: Bake in oven, cook under broil, pan sauté/fry

CREATIVE: Using different spices and way of cooking every time makes the dish taste different and prevents the boredom (for me).

NUTRITIOUS SPICES: Turmeric, Chili powder, Cumin, Garlic, Oregano, Thyme, Paprika, Bay leaf (the ones that I can use)

Dr B. says spices are potent anti-microbials that helps digestion and help assimilate the nutrients from the foods that they are cooked with.

Salmon Dishes:

-I bake salmon in two ways.

1- If I want spiced that day, I put the salmons (skin side down) on my stainless steel tray lined with an unbleached, chlorine-free (TCF) greaseproof parchment paper. Squeeze lemon juice on all of them; a little drizzle of olive oil; sprinkle Himalayan and sea salt mixture (that I made) and sprinkle (cover the whole surface of the fish with) all the spices in order: paprika, turmeric, a little bit cumin, lots of black pepper (on my husband’s salmons) and bake in preheated oven 400F for 25 minutes. We like well-done. You can adjust the time according to the size of your fish and how much cooked you like.

2-If I want plain, I just squeeze lemon juice (takes the fishy taste and smell away) on all of them; a little drizzle of olive oil; sprinkle Himalayan and sea salt mixture and bake.

I the past, I was cooking salmon on stove in my enameled cast iron, with lots of lemon juice, butter, same spices and vegetables ex: asparagus, broccoli and Brussel sprouts but not anymore. Because now, I make more fish and vegetables in order to have some left over for the next day breakfast or lunch so baking is more practical, and also no butter for me anymore 😉.

By the way, here is one of my post from 2013 for a Salmon dish recipe. You can see that I still use the same spices.

Vegetables:

I buy organic frozen vegetables and when I bake salmon or chicken, I spread 2-3 kinds of vegetables next to them. I try to rotate/change the vegetables so that it would be enjoyable, not boring and get different nutrition each time. I usually have frozen: Broccoli, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, asparagus, mushroom mix (now I can only eat Shitake and Maitake). I also have frozen riced cauliflower in leu of rice and peas for occasional use in Russian salad (boiled peas and carrots mixed with a little bit almond milk yogurt (in place of mayo) and diced pickled dill. I used to add potato and corn too but not anymore).

When I bake the vegetables, I only drizzle a little bit of olive oil and salt (not on broccoli, I think it makes it go brown) on them. Sometimes, if I am not lazy, I sprinkle turmeric on cauliflower and it gives it a nice color and nutrition of course.

I also like to sauté some vegetables/greens in a pan with a little bit oil and fresh garlic ex: kale, spinach, cabbage (I add in a little bit cumin seed, love it). I like to cook beet greens, stems separated, with chopped up onions sautéed in oil until translucent. When room temperature serve with yogurt on the side (I use almond milk yogurt now. Kite Hill brand is the best so far). I dice the stems of the beet greens and sauté them with a little bit oil, salt and garlic until soft, when room temperature, mix with yogurt and serve as appetizer.

Turkey dishes:

I actually only use ground turkey, because 1-my husband does not like turkey meat even though I love it baked with lots of butter and spices served with gravy w/mushrooms, peas and carrot and cranberry sauce. But no cranberries and butter for me now so no turkey meat.

I make meatballs, ground turkey and vegetables stuffed collard greens and chili. Well, I made chili only one time but did not really taste all that good without the beans, tomato paste, and peppers ( not allowed in my current eating protocol), so it was fist and last time actually. Turkey meatballs are really easy to prepare and fast to cook. Stuffed cabbage is a little time consuming but worth it.

My Turkey Meatballs Recipe (GF, Grain free, starch free) :

1 lb organic ground turkey

1 medium diced onion

2 tbs heaping almond meal

1 tsp baking soda (makes it lighter, fluffy)

1 egg

Spices (turmeric, paprika, salt, cumin)

Mix all ingredient and put spoonful (I mixed it all with spoon and distribute on tray with spoon too, so no messy hands 👍) of mix on parchment paper lined tray. I cook under broil, frequently checking. When one side is cooked, flip them over and cook the other side. Voila! Meatballs are ready. The other day, I had some leftover stuffed cabbage ingredients (ground turkey mix) left. I mixed in the egg and almond meal and a new meatball recipe is invented. It tasted really good too.

Ground Turkey & Vegetables Stuffed Cabbage (Gf, Grain free, Starch free):

1 lb ground turkey

1 onion, diced

3 cloves of garlic, minced

2 small shredded carrots

1 cup riced cauliflower (traditionally we use rice but no grain/starch so cauliflower is great substitute here)

1-2 tsp Himalayan/Sea salt

Spices: paprika, cumin, black pepper (if you can use)

1/4 cup olive oil

1 head of Cabbage (round cabbage)

  • You need to boil the cabbage leaves a little so that you can stuff them easily. You can either submerge the whole/half cabbage in a boiling water in a big pot and carefully remove leaves as it softens or remove leaves when raw from the cabbage and than submerge into the boiling water until it is soft enough. Make sure you cut the hard triangular rib from the base of each cabbage leaf with a small paring knife after blanching them so that you can roll them without tearing the leaves.
  • Once the leaves are ready, mix all the other ingredients with a spoon and start rolling the leaves. So based on the shape of the cabbage leaves, you can stuff the leaves. They do not have to perfectly rolled up. You should have seen mine; there were triangle shaped ones, rolled up one, small or large ones etc. The important part is you want to make sure, the seam side faces down and placed in pan tightly.
  • Layer the bottom of the pan with the cut up cabbage ribs and other leftover pieces of cabbages. Place the stuffed cabbages in the pan and cover with cabbage leaves again. Traditionally, we would pour some tomato and pepper paste mixed with water over this but since I can not use both, I just filled the pan with hot water until it goes above the cabbage rolls. I also put a plate on top to keep them in place while cooking.
  • Close the lid. Once you see the first bubbles (boiling), turn down the heat and cook until the filling is thoroughly cooked and easy to cut through (cabbage leaves are so soft, melts in your mouth). Some people likes to bake them, I prefer cooking on stove.
  • Serve them with yogurt mixed with minced/crushed garlic, and dried mint. If you want to add a little heat, a little bit cayenne or red pepper flakes would make it happen. Before you add the dried mint, if you crush the mint in between your fingers, you can smell the fragrance and liven your yogurt dip up.

So, I have my lamb and chicken recipes, spices to share with you. But I will write about them on my next post. Even though Dr B. says I can eat beef, I still could not find the quality that I am looking for yet. So, I am only eating grass fed lamb that we buy from Sam’s club that it comes from New Zealand. I ground half of it and freeze in portions and the rest, we (me or my hubby) cut in cubes and freeze; sometimes cooked, baked or raw. Sometimes, we bake a big chunk and freeze it when cooled down and use it as ‘Doner’ = ‘Shawarma’ = ‘Gyro’ later on. It depends on how we feel; tired or have energy for the prep. I will tell you all about these.

Chicken recipes and spice combinations are endless. I will give you the general idea and you can go from there. As you see, in my recipes, I do not give the exact measurements of the spices. Believe it or not, even though you use the same spices, changes in the amount of each spice changes the taste. My husband knows which spices I can use. One night, I was tired so he baked the chicken drumsticks with spices and oil-that’s it. Oh my God, it was out of this world! So crunchy outside but juicy inside, lots of spices, flavors. He is a great cook when it comes to meat and bean dishes, by the way. His cooking is intuitional. He can smell the dish while cooking and say ‘this needs more salt’. I can not do that even though I am the one who worked in a restaurant as a chef, recipe developer and posts them when I can. He is a natural who loves to eat and cook but not clean, just like me 😂 Ok, back to my point. I wanted to eat the same chicken dish. I have all the spices, and chicken drumsticks (organic), I baked it and not the same dish. Still tasty but I’ve put less spice and probably the different ratio of each spice, the taste was not same. You see what I mean when I say ‘spice combinations are endless’.

My New Eating Protocol 3

(O Blood Type Eating Plan)

Today I would like to talk a little bit more about the eating habits/plan. In my previous post (fourth paragraph), I outlined the general rules/points that are important. Now it is time to go into details. What and how I ate at breakfast, lunch, dinner and during snack times.

Here, I would like to say that I am not stating that I am doing things right. I am still trying to find the best way to incorporate what my doctor tells me to do based on my body’s response. I am sharing these with you because I am sure there are lots of people out there just like me who are doing elimination diet ( sugar free, not only gluten free but grain free, no night shades vegetables , no root vegetables, no starch, no fruit, limited nuts, limited spices, limited oils). At first it may look really scary, frustrating but in time with a little creativity, research (lots of recipe reading) and positive thinking/making it fun (in my case, turning into a reason to develop new delicious recipes) helps. Actually, now almost everyday, I am developing new recipes and I am not sure how I will write them down and take pictures to post. It is a lot. I may actually start sharing the links of the recipes that inspires me and tell a little bit about my new recipe until I post them. As the creativity kicks in, I am creating new spice mixes to make my protein meats taste and look different but delicious each time, thank God, because I can get bored of a dish really easily. I need to eat greens/vegetables during lunch and dinner (breakfast not required) but it can be boring and I should make it fun and easy to eat because I am already having hard time to eat them. I must admit, I do not crave greens or vegetables. So I started to prepare them strategically, yes I said this word, because If I am going to eat, I have to eat the most nutritious greens/vegetables to heal myself and combine them with the most nutritious spices, other vegetables, oils and nuts. I have to incorporate everything to heal my body as soon as and as much as possible. Right now, it is 3-months mark. My doctor will re-evulate my body & do some tests and based on that we will decide the next treatment plan.

By the way, I am listening to Erik Sate- Gnossiennes:No.1.Lent right now while I am writing this post and I love it! 😊

Now, while I say that I have to heal my body as soon as possible with incorporating everything that is good=healing for my body, I also have to make sure that I am not stressed out. I will do my best to do and that is enough. Some days I can not take all my supplements, or eat on time so I feel sleepy/weak/hangry or don’t have enough protein ready for me to eat. It happens but instead of getting upset, stressed out or feel any other negativity, I try to take my lesson from that and think of ways to prevent future occurrence. I try to find new tactics, new tricks to avoid those situations. My emotional health and morale are as much important as my physical health. For me, physical comes first to be honest. If I am hungry, I get hangry, emotional and cry for a really silly reason. So I know my priority is to make sure I have something to eat, if nothing else, my protein shake which is really easy to prepare. My doctor gave me whey protein, Solufiber and few other powder, immune supporting supplements that I put in my shake with plain water and ready to drink. If I did not have chance to prepare my meal yet, I drink that and it provides me some fuel until my meal is ready. I suggest you to find yourself a quick nutritious fuel like protein shake or something similar within your eating protocol and have it available to you when needed. It can be as easy, simple as nuts/nut butter. You just have to find the one that works for you. Nuts/nut butter don’t work for me. I do not even want to eat them when I am hungry. I do not want anything sweet. It has to be salty or no sweet/salty at all.

Here, I will share my personal experience about nut butter with you . I can not eat almond butter (only complaint nut butter I have at home) any more because it tastes sweet to me. Even though it is raw, unsweetened almond butter, it tastes sweet. Interesting, isn’t it? It has been 15 days since I did not eat any sugar, sugar substitute (except stevia in some days, not every day), foods that turn into sugar when digested etc. My taste buds are changing because of my new eating habits. For example, today when I was at work, I wanted to drink some coffee (I can drink coffee, caffeinated). I had my organic coffee, so I made it but realized, I did not have almond milk. I took few sips from the coffee and it was fine and actually tasted pretty good. I could never drink coffee without cream or milk before, but today for the first time in my life I enjoyed it as it is. Important note: It was caffeinated, organic coffee. Non-organic and Decaf coffees may be processed with chemicals and not good for your health. I heard there are Swiss water processed decaf coffees that uses chemical free decaffeination process but do your homework please and find the healthiest version you can find.

Anyways, now lets have a look at what I eat at each meal time.

Breakfast:

If I feel hungry, I eat eggs. Egg white mostly, sometimes whole egg. I make omelets with mushrooms, asparagus, spinach, onion etc. I either use one ingredient or mix few in the eggs. If I do not feel like eating eggs, I eat pancakes with a little almond milk yogurt and almond butter. Remember earlier I said almond butter tastes sweet to me, so it works well on pancake. If I do not feel hungry to eat breakfast, I just drink my protein shake. If I am really hungry, like the other day, I can eat 2 turkey meatballs, topped with mashed avocado and broccoli microgreens. I usually feel like eating something refreshing like fresh herbs/greens in the mornings with my breakfast. In Mediterranean countries, where I am from, we eat lots of fresh herbs/greens like parsley, arugula, watercress etc with a little lemon juice, salt and olive oil drizzled on them at breakfast. Of course that breakfast is usually consists of lots of cheese varieties, olive varieties, warm bread, earl grey or breakfast tea, homemade jams/preserves, honey, tahini, molasses, beautiful ripe tomatoes, cucumbers, Anaheim peppers etc. All things that I can not eat now except cucumbers. But when I heal my body, I will enjoy them few times a week hopefully. 🤞 You may think, it is a lot of food, how can they eat all this much. Meal times there, especially breakfast and dinner are more like time to bond, share, laugh, spend quality time as family or friends over delicious meals in a relaxing environment. Of course during work days, it may cut short timewise but still eaten, enjoyed all together.

Lunch/Dinner:

Let’s start from the greens. Remember earlier I said I try to make it easy, as nutritious as possible. I used to prepare salads as :some butter lettuce and radicchio mixed with kale/arugula/spinach; some garnish like tomatoes, cucumbers, green onion, steam cooked beets, radish slices; nuts ex: pecan/walnut; seeds ex: sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds etc. Now I changed the way I do my salads.

My New Salad style:

  • finely chop up 3 organic dark greens (one handful of each) ex: spinach /arugula /kale /parsley /watercress;
  • finely chop up 1 organic small red or sweet onion ( if I do not have, I use green onion)
  • finely chop up 2 organic Persian cucumber
  • finely chop up few cloves of garlic ( sometimes, I do not want to eat garlic, I omit it)
  • lemon juice, Himalayan/Sea salt, olive oil to taste ( some days I crave more lemon juice, some days mild)

Why did I start doing like this? Because trying to eat big leaf salads with fork was not enjoyable for me. This new salad, I eat with spoon and enjoy it with all its juices and mixture of all the ingredients at the same time. I also believe that I am eating more healthy, nutritious dark leafy greens this way. I also think that in a month, who knows, may be I will get bored of this and find another way of salad eating. For now this works great!

Baked/Steam cooked Vegetables:

I can eat all the cruciferous vegetables, and non-starchy vegetables. I usually add 3 kinds of vegetables when I bake my salmon or chicken in the oven. One side of the tray (stainless steel, not aluminum) is the protein and the other side is the vegetables. Protein is usually wild salmon, organic chicken thigh or drum stick. If I am making turkey meatball, I usually make it from 1 lb and it fills up the whole tray. I cook it on broil, much faster than baking. So when I do turkey meatballs, I usually do fresh salads. I used to broil bell peppers too but since it is night shades, I can not eat them anymore. Note: All vegetables are organic and meat products are grass fed lamb/organic chicken or turkey/wild fish.

Here, I want to share what my doctor told me on my first day. Towards our 3.5 hour meeting, he mentioned that in my eating protocol there is no dairy meaning no cheese for me. I said, ‘ohh I love cheese and I have my beloved cheeses in my refrigerator, I will start the new eating plan when they are finished.’ He said ‘Of course, spend this weekend and start on Monday’. I said how nice of him, he did not force me to do anything. Than he said, pointing his finger towards his head, ‘it is all about the mindset‘. I nodded my head, agreeing with him. We went home, I opened my refrigerator and saw that I actually have a week worth of cheese. I closed the door, turned to my husband and said, “I will start tomorrow morning and you will enjoy these cheeses’.

I could not believe myself when I did that. I felt something greater than me helped me, gave me strength. I knew that all that cheese, dairy products that I was eating, even though they were the best quality that I can find (organic, grass fed etc), they were harmful, toxic to my body but I was not able to ‘want to’ give them up before. But, I did it that day, 9/18/2020 Friday night. Why? Because, I actually had the mindset of doing whatever it takes to make me healthy again when I decided to go to my current doctor. I searched a lot and even interviewed 3 doctors before deciding to go with him. I will call him Dr B. So in my mind, I said, I will do everything that he says even though it does not make sense to me within this 3 months and see what will happen. This way, at the end, I can say I did everything and it worked (hopefully) or it did not work so I will look for another doctor, but so far it seems like it is working, How do I know you say? I suggest read my first post. It tells you there.

By the way, in the first night, I read all my treatment, eating and exercise plan. I prepared an email consisting of 16 questions and emailed him. He replied back to me with answers supported by research articles. His Treatment Guide book (specific to me) also had all the supporting researches under all the supplements that he recommended. So Dr B is great so far. (knock on wood, cross fingers 🤞, pray , evil’s eye etc so that it continues to go well or even better and better hopefully.)

I will write about how I prepare my meat products in my next post and share few recipes that I developed and hubby approved. By the way, I would like to take this opportunity and express my deep appreciation for my husband’s support here. He was always supportive in every aspect of my life but during the first week of my hangry/ weak/ always tired/ sleepy times, he was extra patient, understanding, supportive not only physically like cleaning the house and cooking but also emotionally. While we are going through tough times, our loved ones around us are also affected by this situation. Let’s appreciate them and show them our love and appreciation.