Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Nourishment Is Not A Fad

As a child growing up in middle-class America I believed nutritional information, that little box with the breakdown of calories, fat, carbs and sugar on the back of packaged food, was nutrition itself. By the time I was in high school the calorie-obsessed '80s had given way to the fat-obsessed '90s. So basically I believed nutrition consisted of grams of fat, and little else. How was anyone to know polite society wouldn't truly grasp the real nuts and bolts of nutrition until the Atkins-obsessed '00s taught us about the evils of carbs? What freedom! Everyone gleefully chucked their white pasta and fat-free Wonder bread for bacon-wrapped fried cheese and steak.

It took me many years to unlearn the bullshit passed off as nutritional knowledge in the good ol' U.S. of A. It took me even longer to finally source what nutrition actually is. Nourishment. I no longer give a rats woo-ha about calories, fat, carbs, sugar or food-guide pyramids. In fact, I rarely eat food that even comes in a package to put a label on. But when I do, the FDA's nutritional information chart is the last thing I look at. Instead I focus on the ingredients. My aim is to eat as little processed, refined, chemically enhanced and genetically modified as possible. In the beginning it was hard. After a few years it's second nature.

By far the biggest shift in my relationship with food came when I started juicing vegetables in late 2013. Almost instantly my food consumption dropped drastically, because I just wasn't hungry. Miraculously, I stopped obsessing over food, and pretty much stopped thinking about it all together, except when I needed to refuel. The desire to eat when I was bored or upset or in pain or feeling sorry for myself or celebrating or deserving some indulgence just...went away. Of course I'm laughing my ass off because not only did all the weight I'd been struggling to lose for much of my adult life just fall off, Fibromyalgia became a totally manageable illness. My body was nourished, and the wonderful gifts its given me in return just keep on coming.

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*Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to everyone who voted for me in Healthline's Top Health Blogs Contest! There's still a day or so left to vote so if you get the chance, please click the link above. Seeing so much dedication and support sure gave this tired ol' blogger quite a boost. Cheers!

#fibromyalgia #fibro #healthblog #diet #nutrition #chronicillness #chronicpain #juicing #healthline  

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Goodbye Chicken Little!

For the woman who loves Mondays, simply because they offer a clean slate to do better, you betcha I'm thrilled it's a new year. While I'm not quite in 'resolution' mode, I am hell bent and determined to implement two changes in my life. The first is to stop reacting. To anything and everything. Always. Forever and ever. This doesn't mean if some horrible tragedy befalls a loved one I can't cry, but it does mean I can't run around like Chicken Little holding my wounded head and declaring to anyone and everyone that the world is ending. Which is something I frequently do. But it hasn't ended yet, hence the resolution to stop reacting.

The other change I'm striving for is to finally, once and for all, no ifs ands or buts, get myself on a normal schedule. Staying up till after two in the morning, then sleeping till eleven the next day, is completely annihilating my ability to move my life forward. The problem is it's frequently hard for me to fall asleep, and I'd rather stay up until my face is planting in the keyboard with exhaustion, anyway. The late night is when I do my best writing. But I guess I'm growing up, or something equally awful, because what my late nights are costing me is the ability to resume a high degree of normal living.

Herein lies the problem. When I don't get enough sleep I flare, which for me starts with the most scathing case of 'devil woman' mood. Not only do I want to obliterate any and every person on Earth I've actually met before, but the entire planet, as well. Next I get really hopeless and lose my faith in any sort of a future, which usually prompts me to don my chicken costume and run around holding my wounded head, declaring to anyone and everyone that the world is ending. This stupid cycle has reprized so many times I can't take it anymore. So I've just gottta bite the bullet and overcome this absurd pattern. Try and go to bed as early as I can, painfully vacate dreamland when my alarm goes off way too soon, and expect the flares. I mean, if I know they're coming anyway, can't I just not react?

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*Please vote once a day in Healthline's Top Health Blogs Contest! Still hanging in at 10th place, thanks so much for the support!

#fibromyalgia #fibro #healthblog #newyear #resolution #chronicillness #chronicpain