About Me

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My life's purpose is best described by: Be the change you want to see in the world: Gandhi. Smiling is my "botox"-FORGET THE DRUGS AND SURGERY. I spice up my life, not my diet, which is SIMPLY DELICIOUS on its own. KISS: I Keep it simple sugars-from whole, fresh, ripe, raw, organic fruits (veggies,some nuts/seeds too). The 811rv motto is: simplicity at mealtime, variety throughout the year. My motto is: I live in my own little world, but it's ok they all know me there. At some point, you have to realize that some people can stay in your heart, but not in your life.

10/26/2011

Health Compromises That Have Not Killed Me Yet

Disclaimer: What I am about to write is not a promotion of health compromises, but a simple acknowledgement that there are compromises and then there are COMPROMISES when it comes to the best health achievable under a given set of circumstances. Optimal diet and optimal healthy lifestyle is best. Striving for optimal health and happiness should be everyone's birth right and never challenged, but it is not realistic, nor healthy to only expect the best no matter what. Perhaps the healthiest viewpoint is to accept the best choice considering all of the external environmental forces, influences, and exposures that are beyond a person's control. In other words, make the best of every situation, but don't expect the best.

What specifically am I talking about? Considering that this is a blog dedicated to the 811rv diet and lifestyle, it should be no secret that I am referring to cooked foods and less than perfect lifestyle habits.

Since I turned my health around in May 2007 by finding out about 811rv and implementing it to the best of my ability, I must admit that I have yet to perfect this diet and lifestyle. I feel best when I am eating 100% 811rv and following the best lifestyle habits; therefore, I always return to it as soon as possible when I stray, but my strays are frustrating considering that I know better. Dr. Graham suggests an adaptation window of 7 to 10 years as a reasonable and probably average result. This is also in line with normal turnover and regeneration of living cells where it takes between 7 to 11 years to completely replace almost every cell in the body. Some cells are never renewed; ova in a woman, for example are never renewed. A woman is born with all of the ova she will ever have and they never renew. Since I am only in my fourth year of 811rv diet and lifestyle and I have many years of unhealthy diet and lifestyle under my belt, I am satisfied that I am following a 'normal' course for anyone that undergoes a major diet and lifestyle change. Hopefully, practice will get better with time. Yes, I realize that only 'perfect practice makes perfect', but who the heck wants to be 'perfect' all the time??? Nonetheless, feeling one's best all the time can't be beat!

I was recently introduced to AA by a new friend of mine. I'm not an alcoholic, even before discovering 811rv, I never drank. I tasted alcohol when I was in my teens and I even got drunk a couple of times in my life. However, I've never liked the taste of alcohol, much less its effects on me. One of the AA messages that I found most striking is that once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic even if you've been sober for decades. Furthermore, one of the tests of AA to determine whether a person is an alcoholic is whether such a person turns to alcohol for comfort when things are stressful and times are hard. Does this not bring to mind most people's notion of 'comfort foods'? Food should only be consumed for normal nutrition, not as a medicine or sedative-ie. eat to live, not live to eat. My conclusion to the AA information is that I am a cooked food-aholic. Intellectually, I understand that when times are stressful/difficult that it is MOST important to stay on course with 811rv diet and lifestyle, but I have yet to achieve that goal. Sadly, I have come to realise that eating any cooked foods is a slippery slope for me. I wish there were something like AA or Al-Anon in place to give the support necessary to stay on course, but I have yet to find one. Visiting the raw food boards is often a frustrating, negative process that doesn't fulfill the proper need for support.

So what are the health compromises I have made over the past four years? I will try to rank them in the order of most harmful to least harmful. Please note that these 'findings' are ONLY based on my personal observations with my limited, non-medical interpretations of what is going on in my own body.

1)Salt or sodium chloride (not to be confused with natural sodium found in whole plant foods). Salt affects me horribly and my body immediately reacts negatively to it, especially in the form of oedema.

2)Heated, processed, non-whole food fats (ie, oils and their many derivatives). I might be Italian, but my Italian body does not react well to the mediterranean staple of olive oil, especially if it is heated. Interestingly, when I visited Israel a couple of years ago, I learned that 2000 years ago, nobody ate olive oil. It was only used for lamps. I wonder when and why this changed?

3)Gluten and other grain products. Again, pasta and fresh bread are many Italians' staples and very appealing to the palate, but they irritate my digestion and even affect my respiratory system.

4)Dairy and any of its many derivatives. Happily, I gave these up long before I even became vegan, let alone 811rv! I made the connection between dairy and my excruciatingly painful kidney stones many years ago, so I haven't dared go near them for years.

5)Cooked tuberous starches (ie potatoes, yams etc). I do not feel any immediate effects from eating these. However, I must assume that in the long run I am not doing myself any favors because nutritionally they do not stack up in comparison to fresh, whole, ripe, raw, organic fruits and vegetables. The lack of nutritious food is certainly no help. I do not check my blood sugar regularly either because I am not a diabetic, but it can not help but be affected by these starches considering their high glycemic load. Another interesting fact is that the potato was only discovered in the new world. It was introduced to Europe only a few centuries ago. Europeans at first reacted very badly to it. Russian czars actually tricked people into wanting it by posting guards around planted potato fields, thus tempting people into thinking it was a special delicacy only to be indulged in by the rich. To think that it is now such a staple only a few centuries later!!!

6)Steamed vegetables. Again, I feel no huge immediate negative effects from eating these, but they are certainly not as nutritious as the raw versions. The main problem I experience with steamed vegetables is the lack of fiber since it is destroyed by the cooking process. If I could check my white blood cell levels on a regular basis, I would probably also see a spike after eating them, but I do not, and can not check my blood after each meal!!! Speaking of which, I only get my blood medically checked once a year and so far so good with my results-YAY!

Here's a typical example of a compromised daily menu when I eat cooked foods:

Breakfast: Raw fruits
Lunch: Raw fruits with raw vegetables
Supper: Raw fruits with raw vegetables and some cooked food. I try to make the cooked food a 'condiment' rather than the main calorie source. Steaming, the crock pot and a microwave are my weapons of choice in the cooked food domain. Lots of greens with the cooked food helps me maintain fiber levels high enough for better digestion. Again, my previous colitis lets me know immediately if I do not have enough of the proper fiber in my diet.

Again, I make no recommendations to do as I do. I just like to speak candidly through my own biases.

2 comments:

Greenmama said...

You wished for a place for people who have food addiction, like AA. There is one. It is called Overeater's Anonymous. I go there every week. It is helping me! They have a website which has lots of helpful materials, audios, a listing of meetings in your area (if they have them). There are even telephone meetings.

Via811 said...

Thank you Greenmama. I will look them up. Out of curiosity however, have you ever spoken of 811rv to them? Are they open to the concept?