Thursday, March 6, 2014

Keeping a Diet Log

One of the focuses in this new year has been 
to get my health back on track.
I first talked about it here.
As I am not a fan of the medical system,
and prefer to find my own solutions to health issues,
I went on a quest to clean up my diet.
Now, mind you, we eat very cleanly
and enjoy scratch cooking.
The intention was to deprive myself of some of my favorite foods,
to determine if these addictions choices were causing the problem.

The first step was to start a food journal.
Everything consumed was written down for a month.
Meals as well as snacks and beverages were documented daily.
I also kept track of any symptoms present, 
as well as if and when my potty visits occurred.
These notes will help detect patterns
and make it easier to determine what might be fostering improvement.

At the onset of this task,
I gave up white flour, dairy, chocolate, sugar,
 and even sucanat, my preferred sugar substitute.
The most beneficial result of this exercise is that it truly
makes you conscious of what goes into your mouth.
There is an  accountability aspect and the adage
"you are what you eat" really hits home.

I nourished myself with herbal teas and homemade veggie stock,
along with foods that we usually eat,
everything scratch-cooked, 
but modified to avoid those particular foods mentioned above.
It was tough, I'm not gonna lie.
Bread and chocolate are my two most favorite things to eat,
and semolina pasta is a long-time family favorite,
but since I knew it was temporary, I willed myself to abstain.
I also started on a probiotic once a day.

You know what happened?
For one, I got a better picture of what kind of calories I'm eating
and the breakdown of nutritional components.
Our family loves carbs, and I knew that's where I needed to make a change.

The problem with my hands is much better
and I've noticed that my ears don't feel blocked.
I have more energy in general, 
not needing a nap in the afternoons,
but savoring it when I grant myself one.
My potty time is more on track,
which makes things so much better.
I'm still working on my sinus congestion,
but having started on quercetin,
I think that issue may soon be resolved.

 Overall, it was a great experiment.
I'm proud that I took the plunge 
and it was well worth the time, energy and effort
to delve into my eating habits.
I eat bread occasionally now, enjoy chocolate regularly
and have gone back to using sucanat instead of sugar for baked goods.
I'm also making better choices for snacks.
Instead of reaching for bread or crackers,
I make up some hummus and eat it with veggies
or eat a banana smothered in Sunbutter.

Amazingly, I'm able to eat yogurt now,
which I haven't done in years because I thought I was lactose intolerant.
That's opened up a whole new world of dietary possibilities for me.
Because I was willing to try new foods that had caused digestive issues in the past,
I've expanded my diet.
I can now eat bananas, broccoli, and various cheeses,
all healthy food choices that will create a stronger, more vibrant me.

Being recently diagnosed with osteoporosis came as a bit of a shock.
I'm only 53, but it has already shown up in a bone density scan.
This diet experiment was a timely endeavor, as I now have a measurable goal to achieve.
To that end, I've made an appointment with a hospital dietician 
to discuss how best to ensure that my bones are getting what they need.
To my surprise, bones can still be strengthened after menopause,
so I'll be doing everything I can to ensure mine are as strong as can be.
After all, I plan to farm for a good, long time.

I'd encourage those of you who are thinking about making a change
for whatever reason,
to go forward mindfully.
Whether you want to lose weight, uncover food sensitivities,
or just feel better, make the effort.
You'll be better for it
and those around you will benefit as well.
Take the time to take care of yourself.
You're worth it.

Homestead Barn Hop


  1. I wish you the very best in your quest for better health.
    My own health took an appalling turn a few years back--so much so that at times I would lie in bed and wish I wouldn't wake up in the mornings. It really takes "standing back" and looking at our diets to understand what went wrong.

    I look at that generation that is in their 90's now (and there are PLENTY!). What did they eat? Well, I'll tell ya what they didn't---chemicals and GMO's. They had desserts and ice cream and bread galore....but the food back then was pure. I switched to all organics---and gave up restaurants (when we are home). The difference was astounding! I can turn my gut issues off and on like a switch---eat restaurant or conventional foods, I'm sick. Eat all home cooked organics.....I'm well.

    As for calcium--an EXCELLENT natural source of that is bone broth---what our grandparents ate almost everyday. Get that soup pot out and simmer simmer simmer those chicken or beef bones with some good onions/celery/carrots. Eat soup, my dear.

    Hugs and best wishes!
    (and end of novel!)

    1. Wow, Sue, I had no idea you had such health issues. So glad you were able to turn it around. You are so right about the older generation. Everything was as fresh as possible, without all the junk in it.
      Thanks for the suggestion, but I don't eat meat, so I can't do the bone broth. We'll figure it out. ;0D
      So glad to see you back here.

  2. Daisy, the life span of America keeps creeping up according to the experts but those same experts don't really say anything about the quality of life during those extra years. Every one that I know over the age of 50 is taking some kind of medicine. I'm amazed at how many people that I would never suspect are taking medication for depression. I believe that you are correct in assuming that food has allot to do with all our health issues. My Dad lived to be 87 years old and he told me on many occasions about his family's eating habits while growing up. We would gasp with horror when he said that they didn't have butter to put on their bread so they used lard. However, it was lard rendered from the pigs they raised themselves and bread made in the wood cook stove. No one would put dirty fuel in their car, so why would we think that dirty fuel wouldn't make a difference on how we run. We have been advertised into thinking that taste and convenience is everything with food. Never mind about nutrition.

    I admire your choice of determining what affects your health in the food that you eat. I suspect that it's different for every person. What affects one person may not affect the next. We all should pay more attention to what we eat.

    Have a great keeping a diet day.

    1. I agree, that living longer is only worthwhile if it is a quality experience. I'm afraid that younger generations are going to be facing a lot of health issues when they get older because of all the junk in our food.
      Thanks for your support! Hope you have sunshine today!

  3. You are a wise woman to look after your health. Sorry to hear about your diagnosis, sometimes a diagnosis is what initiates the very changes we make for better health, so I think there is some silver lining to that cloud. As for me, you already know how you inspired me to quit fiddling around and get on board with my MS protocol, but I'll repeat it. Thank you! I occasionally fall of the wagon, but am able to get right back on. :-)

    1. That's the thing about wagons, they are easily accessible. ;0)
      There's always a silver lining, we just have to find it.

  4. I give you a lot of credit. I really need to do an elimination diet to find out what I'm allergic to but haven't done it yet. I know it's a lot of work - tracking what you're eating and slowly reintroducing things but what a great way to rule out issues. So happy your hands are doing better. Stinks about the osteoporosis but happy you can continue to strengthen your bones.

    1. I found several books that helped outline elimination diets, so that kind of guided me. One was "Gut Bliss" and another was "Digestive Wellness". There's a lot of great information out there!

  5. Hi mymaplehillfarm,

    We have just sent you a message through email regarding our project.
    We one of the biggest recipe search engine in United States and in the world, would like to invite your blog to be featured on our site and make your recipes available to many people.

    If you like it, you can join through this link

    This is one way to share your recipes to the world and it can also help you to increase your blog traffic.
    Full information has been sent to your email.

    Have a good day!

    Kind regards,

  6. Sounds like this has been a wonderful experience for you! A food journal is a really great idea, and I have thought of doing one from time to time. It would definitely help to see how many calories I'm actually consuming. I have been using sucanat in my coffee lately and really like it!

    1. It does take some time to remember to write everything down. I just kept my journal at the table, to make it easier. Sucanat has been a wonderful addition to my diet. ;0D

  7. So glad to hear you are finding ways to make yourself healthier. I have had issues for years and am now doing much better because of diet. No wheat, gluten and milk have made a big difference, as well as exercise, among other things. All the best.

    1. Glad you have found what works for you. ;0)

  8. What a beneficial journey with good results! I've done this once before and it's time to do it again. Thanks for sharing your post on the HomeAcre Hop, I hope to see you again tomorrow! - Nancy The Home Acre Hop

    1. Thanks for stopping in! It was a worthwhile endeavor that I will repeat.


Thanks for taking the time to leave your thoughts!