Side Effects of Caffeine

My top concern is the health and well-being of my family. That is why I have decided that  we need to cut down on the stuff we drink or eat that our bodies don’t really need, as well as enhancements that only lead to suffering when all is said and done. For us, one of those things is caffeine. This is a tough one because we love the main effect it gives, which is a good focus on our work and that is why I go back and forth with this. But ultimately, I’d love to just not have it in my life because when I think about all the side effects, I can already tell that it is not worth adding this substance to our system on a daily basis.

Although the effects may vary from per person, here are some side effects of caffeine based on our experience: 

  • The body temperature tends to run cold shortly after caffeine intake.
  • Our body responds to caffeine like how it would if we were in danger, hence the sweaty underarms, palms, and feet.
  • It disrupts the normal function of our nervous system.
  • Because it takes time for caffeine to leave the system, it disrupts sleep.
  • Too much caffeine can make one so anxious, and lose focus.
  • After the boost of energy has worn of, we want more caffeine thinking we can dodge the fatigue that comes after. The fatigue wins regardless of the dose.
  • There is urgency to use the bathroom afterwards
  • If you have an autoimmune disease, it triggers adrenal fatigue and it can make certain body parts hurt as the body’s way of telling us that it’s too much to handle (ex. joint pain)
  • Caffeine is no bueno for our heart and blood pressure. It can cause our heart rates to go up as well as our blood pressure.
  • For women, it can put the “Pain” on our PMS. Click here for more info on this.

The first day of no caffeine consumption is always the hardest if your intake has been regular. It would feel as though you are orbiting space. So trust the process because the next day will always feel a little better knowing that you are making a conscious decision for your health.

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Howdee space cadet, we got this!

There are alternative beverages you can have if you are into having a morning beverage, research a good herbal tea that you will enjoy to replace your morning joe, matcha, or energy drink.

In addition there are supplements in the B-vitamin family that can boost your energy without giving you harmful side effects.

I started making lemon water, and do enjoy a warm cup of it.

When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemon Water

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I’m a big fan of the Beyonce’s Lemonade album and the emotionally liberating book I read that reminded me of  how good lemons are called The Clarity Cleanse by Dr. Habib Sadeghi (where the lemon water is part of the Intentional Unsaturation Diet Plan that I got into so much that it has become a regular part of my meals.)

I am a believer exerting continued efforts to being well and staying well. So recently, I started making lemon water in a big batch. I love how energizing it is when consumed early in the morning instead of a caffeine beverage.

Benefits of Lemon Water:

  • It’s a good source of vitamin C
  • It’s hydrating than drinking plain water
  • Great for the skin
  • Aids in digestion
  • It helps prevent kidney stones. The citric acid in lemons help combat development of new calcium stones
  • It helps flush out toxins from our system
  • It has antibacterial properties that can help with sore throat and other respiratory related symptoms

I would usually just squeeze the lemon on a cup of water and call that lemon water. Reading from The Clarity Cleanse book, I learned that boiling it with the skin on is actually better and more nutritious.

How to make Lemon Water:

  1. Bring 3 liters of water to a rolling boil
  2. Wash and chop lemons
  3. Drop the lemons to the boiling water and cover for 5 minutes
  4. Turn the heat off and let it steep for 15 more minutes
  5. Serve some for yourself and have the rest throughout the day.
  6. Strain before transferring to a glass pitcher. 

I put the rest of the lemon water in a mason jar. Next time I’ll put it in a good thermos to keep it warm.

Life in Joshua Tree

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cactus in bloom on our front yard
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Joshua Tree and spectacular sunsets go hand in hand.
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Before we became tree dwellers, we were desert dwellers.

In August of 2016 we moved to the iconic Joshua Tree, California. Just like any desert in the world, living there was a big adjustment from living in a big metropolitan like Los Angeles. It can go from “wow it’s so nice outside” to “omg, let’s go back inside!”. I find that the temperature is decent from 5am to 10am—after that, the sun just gets brutal.

There are no trees to lean on to take a break from the sun. There’s hardly any formation of clouds in the sky that can block the sun. It is bluer than the ocean which makes it so pretty to look at from the comforts of our home or vehicle. If you are not wearing a hat, you’re going to be fried to a crisp within 30 minutes of exposure. This was summer in Joshua Tree.

Spring and fall were my favorite weather in JT. 

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these beauties come out in the spring time

Winters are generally pretty mild (low of 30s to 40s – high of 50s to 80s), it is still always sunny but the high winds begin occur more during this season and can be unkind if you get caught up in it. 

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puppies resting from the sun

We spent the first week unpacking, getting acclimated to our home, and potty training the puppies. It is our first rental home. 

When we lived in LA, we were in an apartment and did not have a yard. Having two puppies in an apartment clearly was not something we wanted to keep up with. They both like to run around and play bite and were knocking things over in our small space. A Shiba Inu would be fine in an apartment-infact in Japan they are most popular for being such awesome apartment dwellers, but a Rhodesian Ridgeback needs much more than a 900 sq. ft. apartment in my opinion. 

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Off leashing is cool out there.

 

Living in a remote location in Joshua Tree has it’s perks and disadvantages:

Extremely quiet life. We hardly hear anybody or anything. Occasionally hear the neighbors dogs or coyotes. 

There is no such thing as traffic. There is more than enough space for everybody on the road. You get to your destination when you want to get there.

People are warm. In a small town like this where there is not much commercialism and traffic going on, people seem to be more relaxed, warm, and friendly. 

Real thrift stores. I say ‘real’ because the prices of the things you are looking for, and the things you might want are really cheap. Unlike in LA where the sign says thrifty and the cheapest thing you will find at the store is $10. That is not the case in Joshua Tree.  

Joshua Tree National Park. The best part of living there was having access to this magical place.This is a completely different planet. I’ve never seen anything like this place in my whole life. It is other worldly amazing and a must see if you love landscape, peace, and quiet.

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my fave photoshoot from Joshua Tree National Park. it was 90 something degrees when this was taken.

Spectacular night skies. You can hang out with the ‘real’ stars out here in Joshua Tree. On a night where the moon is barely there is the best time for stargazing. I almost felt like I was drowning when I looked up, it was amazing! We’ve seen meteor showers on several occasions. 

Good yard space. All the houses we looked at had a decent sized yard. We chose to rent a house that is sitting on a half acre lot and the yard space is perfect for our puppies.

Homes for Rent. Zillow is a good website to look for listings out here in Joshua Tree. That’s all we used to get in touch with the realtors. The only tough part was traveling 2.5 hours each way whenever we had an appointment to see a house. You pretty much get your money’s worth out here AND MORE when it comes to renting. We looked at 3-4 houses that are in our price range and found the one we want at about $1,120/month for almost an acre of property (we were paying twice as much to rent tiny tiny space in Glendale, CA). We feel safe and super comfortable with the space that this place has allowed us to create.

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puppy patrol

Airconditioning IS A MUST.

Wear Sunscreen. Both indoors and outdoors.

Install blinds and black out curtains. this will help with the cost of cooling the house down.

Farmer’s Market. The farmers come every Saturday to bring fresh fruits, produce, and many more.

Yucca Valley. This is the neighboring town of JT. It is developed and they have the big box stores where you can buy what you need. 

People are dog lovers. Yup. There is a dog park and if you live in a remote area, you can pretty much take your doggies out for a walk on unpaved roads. Just gotta make sure you get them vaccinated for the rattlesnake bite.

Jobs. We both knew that moving out here means that there will be no jobs like there are jobs in the city. We have to create our own jobs to sustain our lifestyle and know that if you fail, you have to go back to the city. This was the reason why we had to go back to living close to a big metropolitan area.

Flash floods happen. It doesn’t rain often, but when it does, just stay home if you have a sedan. 

So dry. Here, you really learn how to drink water or you will start hallucinating because you’re dehydrated. You need to reapply a moisturizer 2-3 times a day.

We rent a PO BOX. The mail doesn’t come to our house and the post office is a 15 minute drive from us. 

Dirt roads. We have a sedan and if we take to Siri’s direction, she will take us to the dirt roads to get to the town. Once we figured out that there are paved roads, we always took that which added about 5-7 minutes to our drive which is not that bad. A truck would be ideal for living in remote areas in Joshua Tree.

We enjoyed our time out there. If you are seeking for a quiet place to live, or vacation, I would definitely recommend checking out Joshua Tree in the spring time.

If We Are Not Growing, We Are Dying

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I was stuck in a rut not so long ago. Lost is a better term for it, depression is the most widely used term that is associated with stunt in our growth. 

How do we feel when we are NOT growing? How do we feel when we are not nourished and our needs are not met? We feel helpless, we see no hope only darkness, and we usually blame others for our circumstance. We delve on things that are not in our present moment. We sightsee in hell. The voices inside our heads telling us we won’t make it is louder than the voice of that wants to make it. And so on. 

I was heavy on the self-judgement side of things that it clouded my perception so heavily and I soon started forgetting I have priorities that need prioritizing and I have dreams that need actualizing.

“Worry is a misuse of our imagination.”

-Dan Zadra

It took recognizing the ownership of my own feelings and actions for me to realize that I am responsible it. We create thoughts which are manifested by our consciousness (a.k.a the intelligence that lives within all of us) and if you believe it, it’s highly likely that they get translated into our reality. And that is why we need to recognize within ourselves the  thoughts that are real, the thoughts that aren’t real, and what thoughts are healthy for us. 

 

Example of unhealthy thoughts: “I’m never gonna afford a house.” ; “All of this sucks.” ; “My coworkers are idiots.” ; “My partner doesn’t see me.”

 

Example of healthy thoughts: “I love how I can set goals and be proactive about it.” ; “I am hungry, what should I cook?” ; “Maybe Gina is having a rough day. I wonder if I should ask her to go for a short walk with me?”  ; “I appreciate how my partner shows up for me when I need him / her the most.” 

 

It helps to write down ill feelings so they don’t live inside us. There is an exercise that I learned from a book called Clarity Cleanse by Dr. Habib Sadeghi that is called Purge Emotional Writing 12 or PEW 12. This is basically a writing exercise where you don’t judge what you write, and you write for 12 minutes (I set a timer) whatever is bothering you, your soul, your thoughts, or any clutter that might hinder you from loving your life and your productivity for the day. And the best part is you don’t read what you write, you crumple it, throw it away, or burn it. I like burning mine.

 

Learning to unclog our heads and our hearts truly help in letting some new energy flow inside of us. 

“Every moment is an opportunity to grow.” 

Who is the thinker? Who is the doer? the answer simply is YOU. You have all the power to steer your whole being in whichever direction you want it to go. 

I saw some similarities on how I can better take care of myself the same time I was learning how to garden and take care of my plants last year.

What I learned is that we are the gardener of our own being. A good gardener sets his / her grow up for success so the plants can thrive and produce well. A gardener watches out for pests and gets rid of them so the plants don’t suffer and die. 

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Everyday we learn something new about ourselves and how we can continue to thrive in a world and a culture that sometimes fill us with doubt. The key to avoiding permeability, is to ignore the rest of the chatter and do our own thing. 

Do more of what makes you happy.”

WHAT WE NEED TO GROW (because we are full of life).

  • Room to Grow. The first thing we need is space. We thrive when we give ourselves enough room to grow, for our roots to go deeper, for our branches (relationships, work, interests) to extend and stretch and grow healthy leaves. So continue to clear your physiological (outer) and psychological (inner) space. It makes my work easy to manage when I have a clear head. I work from home and I notice when our home has less clutter, I can think better, I work better, and get satisfaction with my output. 

 

  • Nourishment. Eat well by finding what your body likes, and what it doesn’t like. When I was younger, I usually ask, “what’s good to eat?” now that I’m a little older and can feel my body more, I added an evaluation process before I put something in my body and ask, “what’s good for me to eat?” As we grow and change, our needs change as well. So always keep a listening ear to your inner voice and how your body feels. 

 

  • Proper Care. Apart from nourishment, we need a good amount “shut down” time. We are thinkers and doers and all that can be exhausting. So know when to take a rest. After all we cannot do our best when we are tired as hell. I find that creating simple hacks for our day to day helps add manageability amidst the craziness. I am learning to plan our meals when I know it will be a busy week for both my husband and I. 

 

  • Accountability. What are we truly responsible for? Who are we when we show up to ourselves? Who are we when we show up to others? Who are we when we show up to our community? I feel good when I take care of my own needs, and I feel even better knowing that I am doing my best to take care of my family’s needs. 

 

  • Creating opportunities for ourselves. Daydreaming is a healthy way of exercising our thoughts. And when we dream good things for ourselves and for our family and friends, we breathe in and invite the good energy. We take more actions towards self-actualization than we procrastinate. Because truly, if it hasn’t happened yet, we can make it happen and we can take steps towards our goals. 

 

  • Some opportunities disguise themselves as failures. Growth comes in many forms. So don’t take failures too hard because what it really is is another opportunity for us to grow. We bounce back and we try harder. Because we can. 

 

  • Openness. Being open is setting aside our fears and embracing and appreciating our vulnerabilities. Being open brings us blessings that can change our life in an instant. There are words that I come across everyday that I will remember for the rest of my life, from books, from a friend, from my husband, etc. There are people that have come and gone in my life that have made a huge impact on the way I see some things to date. The idea of being open has taught me how to tame the part of me that was judging and rigid. 

 

  • Self-love. This is perhaps the biggest and most important factor I can attribute to in jumpstarting my stunted growth. Self-love is listening to our voice that wants to love ourselves and treat ourselves so very kindly. Self-love has to power to heal the damage of our early years and it will protect us from further suffering and damage.  Self-love is treating yourself with a kind inner voice, with forgiveness, and compassion. Self-love is having the courage to stand up for yourself. Self-love is sharing the love you have for yourself with the people you love, your creatures, and your environment.

 

  • Movement. The importance of adding exercise to your routine is as important as feeding our body the right nourishment that it needs. Movement connects our inner self to our outer self. when you create movement in our body it is as though these two are dancing together in unison, celebrating YOU. Exercising releases a happy hormone a.k.a endorphins that make us feel really good about our life.  I think about it as though I am ‘cleaning house’ because it feels really good internally afterwards. There is a moment of stillness that comes after a long walk, or a workout session. I love that. 

 

  • Surround yourself and your space with beauty. Our environment is key in helping us thrive. This is one of the aspects in our lives that is often overlooked but is actually really important in our health and our growth. Whatever beauty means for you, I hope you surround yourself with it. 

 

  • Interests. Our brains love healthy interests. Curiosity can give us hours and hours of brain and physical activity. My work (for a living) interests me, and I have other interests outside of work. Sometimes a day is not enough to cover everything I want to learn because I have responsibilities outside all of this too. This gets me so excited to wake up the next day and pick up right where I left of.

 

Keeping the mind, body, and heart clean, healthy and alive will keep us growing and thriving. I wish you a happy day ahead! and happy growing! 🙂

The Power Of Essential Oils

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I am a sucker for scents.

The olfactory system or our sense of smell is a gateway to our soul. Our ancestors relied heavily on their sense of smell to look for their mating partners, track game, and to sense danger. We use our nose to interact with our environment. We embrace scents that are pleasant to us and we instinctively cover our nose when something stinks. It has it’s own preferences.

I welcomed aromatherapy with an open heart and an open mind not knowing how impactful this would be in my life. I just loved a good whiff of something beautiful. My husband and I first encountered a diffuser when we were looking for an anniversary present for his parents. They loved it. Then we bought one for my sister in law and she loved it. Finally, after a month or two, we got one for ourselves. I was wowed with the effects.

Since adding essential oils to my daily rituals, I find myself happier and more enthusiastic about starting my day and getting stuff done. Diffusing essential oils add more substance and beauty to the space we are moving in. I like to have the diffuser on my activities whether I’m in creation mode or just lounging around in our living room. I never expected this to work on this aspect, but it did: I used essential oils that promotes creativity and relieves stress in the form of aromatherapy as my training wheels in getting off both smoking and ingesting cannabis–a tool that I once relied on to cope with my life’s stress and anxiety. It felt like a love affair that needed to end. Getting off of any medicine that extremely alters my perception became my big goal since waking up to my body in 2017. I left it cold turkey and I don’t plan on looking back. I just knew it was time and that it was no longer serving my mind, body, and spirit like it used to. 

Essential oils helped me get back into feeling my body again. These plants are so intelligent that they know how to communicate with us in an inexplicable way. These days I don’t bother much with explanations, I go for personal results. What I mostly look for are facts on safety and toxicity levels of essential oils and carrier oils–this is the most important part to consider when choosing and using your EOs. I don’t need to see a ton of research as a basis of what works and what doesn’t, I go for what makes sense to me, I experiment and observe how I feel. Every time I discover something that works and touches my being, I feel accomplished. A  life that feels good and clear makes life easier, sweeter, and enjoyable.

I use EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Database when researching product ingredients. 

While there are so many EO brands out there in the market, they each have their own stellar and not so stellar products within the line. Nature will always dictate the quality of the oils we get because EO’s are made in batches from different parts of the world. You will be amazed by how deep the research about EO’s can go because people love to talk about it and share their own experiences like what I am doing now. Finding what scents you love and finding brands that represent integrity is a fun part of the journey.

I get my EO’s from Whole Foods, Thrive, and Vitacost. I have tried and tested the brands that are available from these stores and I am happy with them. I can feel the benefits from them and I haven’t had any allergic reactions from the oils that I have bought and  used for my DIY body products. 

I’VE USED EO SO FAR ON:

  • DIY Body Products: body oil, body butter, hand and feet butter 
  • DIY Air Freshener
  • DIY Multi-purpose home cleaner 
  • Diffuser

And there’s so much more you can do with them! I just love that I am no longer spending my money on products that have unnecessary toxic chemicals mixed in on their formulas. I used to buy body butters and hand creams from a store that claimed to have non-toxic ingredients only to find out that they do after doing a thorough research on their ingredients. Now I just make my own! It’s so easy and I love being involved in the process of making my own body products. 

SOME TIPS FOR BEGINNERS IN EO:

  • Research what scents you want to start with — they each have their beneficial effects, and if you are working with a budget, you want to start with a few.
  • Buy an EO that is sold in a dark glass bottle with an orifice reducer (this acts as the dropper). Dark and opaque bottles will keep your EO’s from being exposed to sunlight. 
  • If you have pets, look into what’s safe and what’s not safe to use around them.
  • Always dilute your EO’s in safe carrier oils if you are using it for your hair, face, and body. 
  • Store your EO’s in a cool and dark place to prolong the shelf life. Same goes with your DIY products. I currently store my EO’s in a box in the coolest part of the house.
  • EO’s will cause plastic containers to deteriorate because they are of high concentrate, so opt for glass containers when your are working with EOs regardless of the dilution ratio.
  • If you are in the market for a diffuser, get a shape that’s most convenient to the touch (some get too hot), has a good warranty, and one that you can easily clean. 
  • Opt for glass containers for DIY products. They are available on health food stores, online at Amazon (keywords: cosmetic jars, cobalt glass containers, amber glass containers), and other packaging places. There are so many offerings in the market these days. I always just go for the best deals that I can find and reading reviews from other buyers help too.

Having access to essential oils, coupled with creating a beautiful living environment, and changing the way I eat has completely rewired the way I greet life. 

EO’s To Spike Creativity:

  • Frankincese
  • Tangerine
  • Vanilla Absolute
  • Rosemary
  • Clary Sage
  • Vetiver
  • Lemon
  • Bergamot
  • Peppermint
  • Sweet Orange
  • Basil 
  • Eucalyptus
  • Jasmine Absolute

EASY DIY AIR FRESHENER:

What you will need:

  • Filtered water (I bought this spray bottle from Whole Foods, I have several of them around the house for different purposed and I find the quality of the bottle to be great, I found similar looking ones on Amazon that I haven’t tried. This bottle fits 2/3 cups of water)
  • 20-30 drops of your favorite essential oil

Enjoy! 

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I am currently enjoying the Aura Cacia brand. Good quality EO’s that fits my budget!

REVITALIZING the Body Doing KETOGENIC and PALEO DIET

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I’ve been on several diets since my 20’s. It’s been 8 years of diving into the world of food and nutrition through self study and research on reliable materials I can find online, in print, and the physical results I’ve gotten from trying these diets.

I’ve tried the vegetarian diet, the vegan diet, the raw food diet, the body ecology diet, the paleo diet, and the ketogenic diet. I read, find recipes, and prepare the food that’s within the umbrella of the certain diet, and stick to it for as long as I can…and for as long as it feels right and it feels good to my body. I have certainly pushed it at times. What I have learned is that my body cannot sustain being boxed in on certain diets that don’t include meat for a long period of time.

Only the our body can tell us the pros and cons of being on a certain diet and eating with restrictions because our bodies respond differently to different foods and food groups. And although this is said so many times by health bloggers and health articles, I cannot stress this enough: it is important to find what works best for YOU.

Developing a curiosity for this has been my saving grace in discovering what it is that makes my body thrive–food & nutrition wise. I have had lung issues that required so many antibiotics at a time and skin issues that I’ve lived with pretty much my whole life. Until I saw a glimmer of light in this dark path I’ve been on. 

If you are feeling like you need to create the change, I invite you to dive in. You will not be disappointed. It will take time, but take all the time you need to do your research and find a good reliable source of ingredients for your home cooking, and most importantly, do take time to get acquainted with your body and learn how to listen to it when it tells you what it needs. This is a life long learning process because our bodies change as we get older and our needs change along with it. 

I used to think that the weighing scale and tape measurements are the tellers if I’m on the right track. I was wrong. The true teller whether we are doing right by our body is the way we feel. 

Questions I ask myself to check in on how I’m doing…

  1. Do I feel strong doing this?
  2. Is my energy level good?
  3. How does my belly feel after eating this?
  4. How does my skin feel after eating this?
  5. How often do I get sick? (this is a teller on how well my immune system works, I used to get sick a lot when I didn’t have meat in my diet)

Out of all these diets that I’ve been on, I found that the Paleo and Ketogenic are the ones that worked for my body. So I’ve been doing both, having their principles meet in the middle and avoiding sweets and processed foods altogether.

The Paleo Diet a.k.a. The Caveman Diet

I first heard about this through my husband who by the way has been battling with an auto-immune disease called Psoriatic Arthritis for 10 years now, and winning by eating good and wholesome foods coupled with his bi-monthly medication that suppresses this active disease.

We bond on food & nutrition and he is the one who introduced me to the work of Mark Sisson. 

I am a fan of Mark Sisson for the reason that his philosophies and ideas that he proposes about how a human body thrives makes sense to me. He is the author of the following  books: Primal Blueprint, Primal Endurance, The Primal Connection, The Keto Reset Diet, and cookbooks accompanying these textbooks.

For the first time in my life, I have a clear understanding of what processed foods are and how frequently I have them in my meals. The truth is our food market here in the United States is deeply saturated in highly processed, high-fructose ingredients. When I was first learning about this, I took my time to re-evaluate my grocery shopping list and I would read the ingredients of every packaged goods that I buy and their nutrition facts. This helps an individual in  getting acquainted with the good and the bad in the food industry. If I don’t understand it, I don’t buy it. I consider them as laboratory created food as opposed to whole foods that are direct from farms like vegetables and animal products that does not need a label on them because you know exactly what it is already.

For example, at the market you will see that:

Produce is produce;

Meat is meat;

Fish is fish;

Poultry is poultry;

A Cookie consists of: unbleached enriched flour (wheat flour,niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate {vitamin b1}, riboflavin {vitamin b2}, folic acid), semisweet chocolate chips (sugar, chocolate, cocoa butter, dextrose, soy lecithin), sugar, soybean oil, partially hydrogenated cotton seed oil, high fructose corn syrup, leavening ( baking soda and /or ammonium phosphate), salt, whey (from milk ), natural and artificial flavor, caramel color. Ingredients of chips ahoy.

Etc. 

You get what I’m saying when buying packaged goods? It has way too many questionable ingredients that can cause health issues later on down the road because most of us are sensitive and we don’t know it until we start paying attention, or worse, a physician tells us that one or more of our organs are not functioning the way it should.

Anything that has a chemical preservative is bad news. They contain allergens that are known to be harmful to us both short term and long term. 

This is what the Paleo approach looks like (focus on the pyramid):

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SOURCE URL: https://www.marksdailyapple.com/the-primal-blueprint-21-day-challenge-infographic/

 

The Ketogenic Diet

Ketogenic Diet is when your body uses fat for fuel. We cook our food in good, clean fats (ghee, olive oil, tallow, avocado oil). While other’s who are doing a ketogenic diet include cheese, butter, and state of the art fats like MCT oil, I stick to my own version of keto, I eat meat and only vegetables that grow above ground.

We like to keep our meals simple and we enjoy tasting the freshness of our bounty by not adding seasonings and flavors that will mask them. For seasoning, I stick to sea salt, pepper, fresh garlic, lemon or lime, and whatever herbs we have growing in our garden. 

Protein Source:

  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Fish
  • Chicken (occasional)
  • Eggs (ocassional)

Carbohydrates, Vitamins, Minerals, and Fiber:

  • Romain 
  • Brocolli
  • Cabbage
  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Aragula

Probiotic:

  • Fermented Sauerkraut
  • Kimchi

Fruits:

  • Avocado
  • Olives
  • Berries (occasional)

Keto and Paleo seems like my best bet in achieving longevity. Although they have differences, they have a similar goal of healing the body through food.

On my future blog articles, I will talk more about good fats and bad fats, the whats and the whys. 

I used to feel like a victim spinning out of control. I find that the key is knowing that we can gain control in this food industry that is so out of control. We just have to seek it and take charge of the things we want to change in our lives. We hold on to the good, and we ditch the bad that is not serving us for the better. Since changing the way I eat, my body has felt so much better, I feel more up to the tasks I’m given, I haven’t been sick for a long time, I haven’t had any episode of Dermatitis Herpetiformis (DH), I am hooked to exercising, I feel strong and there is peacefulness and an overall happiness in my well being for the first time in my life. 

Eliminating Sugar, Starch, and Gluten From my Diet

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To say that I do not like seeing a dentist is an understatement. So last year when I felt my wisdom tooth started growing again (yep, they do grow in spurts!) and it hurt so terribly this time around, I knew that I’ve been having way too much sugar and starch in my diet. I decided to go cold turkey on sugar and all food item & ingredients in our pantry that turns into sugar when consumed

That includes (but not limited to):

  • Rice
  • Flour
  • Whole Grains
  • White Sugar
  • Brown Sugar
  • Brown Rice Syrup
  • Xylitol
  • Stevia
  • Honey
  • Agave
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Fruits containing high-fructose
  • Beans

Initially, I planned on going back to eating my treats once my tooth and gum ache went away. Because why not when there are so many good looking recipes on the internet to try and the whiff of baked goods at the market brings back wonderful memories of childhood…

But when my tooth and gum ache healed, I found myself unwilling to incorporate sweets, starch, and gluten items back to my diet. Why? I was astonished with the results of cutting them out!

Not only did my tooth and gum ache went away, to my surprise, there were more improvements to my well being that came along with it.

Improved Oral Health

My wisdom tooth is now growing in peace, no more pain or gum ache. My teeth feels stronger and porcelain like because there are no starch clinging on to it even after brushing them.

Facial Complexion has Improved

The tiny bumps on my face that I’ve had since entering adolescence have dramatically gone away. I used to think it’s genetics and that I have inherited a bumpy facial complexion when in fact, it was all about the way I eat and what I am eating.

It Cured my Dermatitis Herpetiformis

I have what is called Dermatitis Herpetiformis (DH) which is an itchy, blistering, burning skin rash and can be difficult to live with, especially when the breakout happens, and especially when I don’t know what triggered the breakout in the first place. I feel powerless when a breakout happens. I would break out on my knees, elbows, hairline, and scalp and it hurts not to scratch the itch. And it hurts even more after I scratch it and I see the damage that it’s done. The breakouts can transfer from one part of the body to another. The longest breakout I’ve had to deal with was on my scalp and hairline at the back of my head where it stayed on from 2008 to 2011, during that time I couldn’t wear a pony tail or a top bun.

So when I completely eliminated starch and gluten from my diet, I have had zero episode of a break out. I couldn’t be happier because for so many years, this has been a burden to me.

Better Energy

“But how will you have energy if you don’t eat sugar in your diet?” This is a frequently asked question by family and friends when I tell them I’ve eliminated sugar from my diet. I was raised in a country where rice is a staple in every meal–breakfast, lunch and dinner have a big serving rice, little protein, and a side of vegetables. Philippines is also abundant in tropical fruits that contain a high amount of sugar. We always have banana and mangoes in our home and I’ve enjoyed them immensely because they give me a caffeine like buzz and I will crash hard once the effect wears off…I either drift off to the dreamland or I pretend I can go on reading a book only to find myself reading the same sentence over and over.

So after eliminating rice, fruits and sugar from my diet, I no longer feel the “crash” that occurs when I was on a high-fructose, high-carb diet. I incorporate good fats with my daily meals as a source of energy.

Better Emotional Health

To say that I do not experience any mood swing after switching to a no sugar diet is BS because I still do–but now, only before my monthly cycle starts. It still happens, but its very limited.

No More Bloated Mornings

I have better mornings now that I am not waking up feeling very heavy physically and mentally.

Leg Soreness and Cramping have Subsided

For the longest time, my legs have bothered me especially in the evenings. They would feel very heavy by the end of the day and only an hour long massage alleviated half the pain that I was feeling. So to my surprise, my legs no longer feel painful and I no longer experience cramping.

If I have Bad Bacteria Living in my Gut…

I am determined to live a healthy lifestyle now that I am awake to my body and realize how much of this world there is to live for. Sugar feeds the bad bacteria in our body, so if I have them, they sure are starving right now. And when something starves, I’d like to believe they just die.

Weight Loss

My weight have fluctuated for most of my life and I see now how it is hugely related to these two constant factors: physical environment and emotional state. Before my curiosity about health and food came about, I was eating anything and everything under the sun. I would try the latest crazed diet even when my body told me and showed me symptoms that I shouldn’t. When we travelled for 6 months, I did not bother taking care of my body. I would just eat what is readily available at the stores and at restaurants. This was troublesome for me. I gained so much weight in 2016 and 2017.

Eliminating grains, starches, sugar, and gluten from the diet reduces the amount of calories I consume on a daily basis–this naturally forces the body to use the fat on our midsection as the source of energy (that’s why I eat good fats so I can keep supplying my body with good, stable source of energy).

Aversion To Sweets

One of the ‘side effects’ of eliminating these food groups / ingredients is that I cannot stand the taste of sweetness. So I avoid anything that has a trace of sweet to it.

Cutting out the food groups and ingredients that caused suffering to my body and mind is  by far the most life changing experience that I have ever done. So what do I eat? I am mostly doing a ketogenic diet (meat, fish, and only vegetables that grow above ground). I will talk more about the food groups under ketogenic diet on the next blog article. 🙂

The Journey Begins

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Thanks for joining me!

I am no health expert, I read and experiment a lot based on what I feel is fit for my goals and needs.
 
My posts are based on my personal experiences.
Everybody is in their own journey physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
I believe in finding what it is that makes us thrive as human beings and nurturing that while leaving behind the forces that no longer serve our personal evolution.
 
This is my journey and my intention is sharing this with you.
 
 ❤
Denise