Hospitals Can Be Dangerous Places……


Image

I recently had my own “Suzanne Somers like” hospital experience and I’m still reeling!  Don’t get me wrong – I totally believe in the necessity of good hospitals and medical doctors and that they save many lives everyday.  Unfortunately, I also believe that the situation below, probably happens way to often.

Scene 1:  Emergency Room Saturday 7:30 a.m. I had gotten in the middle of a dog fight the night before and suffered several deep wounds on Friday evening.  FYI - Never, ever put your hand between fighting dogs and NO - A dog’s mouth is not cleaner than a human’s. Anyway, long story short – I woke up Saturday morning with 102 temperature – NOT GOOD. I drove myself to the ER.  I’m told within just a few minutes,  I’m being admitted and IV antibiotics are started.  I can understand the concern and the preventative measures.  This is what hospitals are for.

Scene 2:  About 7:00 Saturday evening, the hospital attending on duty shows up.  She pulls up a chair very close to my bed and with a grim, serious face, proceeds to tell me, “The x-ray of my hand in the ER revealed a disturbing finding”. Exact words folks, “You have a bone lesion in your hand and unfortunately, it’s the kind consistent in people with lung cancer. It has nothing to do with the injury, trust me I questioned the radiologist. I want to get some chest x-rays right away”.  And, depending on what the hand surgeon says, we may also need a MRI to get a better look at the lesion”.  I am away to x-ray within 30 minutes.  Not kidding!  I said out loud –  “OMG! Did my dog just save my life?”  And, I’m thinking, “I guess I’m going to get the opportunity to live what I believe (not that I really want to)”.  I’m convinced that destroying the cancer with toxic chemo you also destroy the body’s ability to heal itself.  A body that can heal itself can survive cancer (the short story).  You see – I believe everything happens for a reason.  (I had the MRI the next morning).

Can you imagine! Here I am in the hospital with a dog bites and this doctor is sitting in front of me seriously telling me she thinks I have cancer.  She doesn’t know anything about me.  After delivering the bad news, she tells me, “The good news is – all my blood work looks great and I’m healthy, which is a big plus” (except for the cancer thing).  She doesn’t ask me if I have any family members are friends there.  She doesn’t say, “This could be nothing”.  She leaves telling me she’ll be back early in the morning.  Wow – I got a great night’s sleep!  After going plant-based, I’ve been able to totally come off the blood pressure medicine I had taken for 10 years. It’s been almost 2 years now.  I thought I was handling the news pretty well, but my blood pressure said otherwise.

Scene 3:  The doctor enters the next morning to tell me my chest x-rays came back clear, (I swear, she seemed disappointed).  It took her about 2 minutes to deliver this news along with, there is still a chance the lesion is malignant, and the surgeon will be in later to talk to me about it.  About 3:00 p.m., he shows up to confirm I have a bone lesion in my hand.  I ask if the MRI confirmed malignancy.  “Oh no! (he said), We won’t know that until we remove it.”  So the MRI was unnecessary and useless?  “Oh no – it gave me a better look at what I’m dealing with”.  I am instructed to make an appointment with his office for Wednesday (3 days later).  I did not.

Scene 4:  Nurse shows up a few minutes later and I ask if I can go home now.  She goes and asks the doctor and I’m released with prescriptions in hand for pain and antibiotics (or so I thought), I couldn’t seem to find them – that’s a whole other blog!

Okay – so I don’t have lung cancer and I guess there is a small chance that have some kind of malignant thing in my hand – but I doubt it.  I’m pretty sure if I wanted to pursue this, which I don’t, I would find out the location of the so-called lesion, is in the exact same spot where I received a really bad cut when I was a girl. It severed nerves and still sends pain up my arm if I hit it.  I’m sure there was some scar tissue left over from that healing.

MORAL OF THE STORY - Stuff happens and sometimes the hospital is unavoidable.  If you do wind up in the hospital:

1.  Question everything! Speak up!  Try to have someone with you taking notes and asking questions when the doctor visits.

2.  FACT – Hospitals are the best place to pick up a bug or infection.  Get out of there as soon as possible!

3.  Do your best to avoid doctors and hospitals. Take responsibility for your health through diet and exercise.   “The REAL solution to America’s “Healthcare Crisis” is to “GET HEALTHY” Good Food For Thought…..

4. When pharmaceutical antibiotics are unavoidable.  Began taking a heavy duty probiotic (good bacteria) immediately.  Along with killing the bad bacteria, the antibiotic destroys all your good bacteria (your natural immune system).  Without the good stuff available in your system to fight the bad stuff, you have a good chance of contracting a viral, bacterial, and fungal infection when the antibiotics are stopped.

FYI – Try “Antiseptine” natural antibiotic ointment for cuts and scrapes. (I’m allergic to the ingredients in common over the counter chemical ointments).  Antiseptine has all of my favorite anti-fungal and anti-bacterial solutions in one jar (coconut oil, aloe vera, tea tree oil, etc.). Find it online or you can make your own.  The web is full of  effective natural remedy recipes.

Plant Based Food for Real People – Really!


 Recipe of the Week:  Enjoy!

Hoppin John with Basmati Brown Rice

  • 2 cups black eyed peas, soaked for 6 hours and drained.
  • 4 cups of water more or less
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons safflower oil
  • 1 ½  medium onion, chopped fine
  • 2 stalks celery chopped fine
  • 2-3 clove garlic, chopped fine
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme (or tbsp of fresh thyme)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 ½ cups cooked basmati brown rice (use rice package instructions)*
  • 2 tbsp light miso
  • Louisiana Hot Sauce to taste (start with 2 tsp – optional)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  1. Place soaked peas. In large pot, add water, bay leaf, pepper flakes and a pinch of salt. Simmer 30-40 minutes, or until tender.
    1. Remove ½ cup seasoned water from peas and set aside.   Add oil to large skillet over medium high.  Add onions, celery, garlic and thyme (in that order) and sauté for 3-5 minutes or until onions are becoming translucent.
    2. Dissolve miso into hot reserved pea broth and add to peas.  Reheat only (do not boil).
    3.  Add cooked rice and hot sauce, toss well (or add hot sauce to peas and serve over rice).

*For a more traditional flavor, use Uncle Ben’s Long Grain rice (not as much fiber).   This is a complete protein.  Just add a colorful salad for a delicious heart healthy meal.   Freeze some for later.

 

 

5 Vegan Diet Myths Debunked!


This is worth sharing from “One Green Planet”

 

Posted on May 31, 2011 by Ginny Messina: Vegan Dietitian & Nutritionist

  • Top 5 Vegan Diet Myths Debunked

Although plant-based diets are seeing a surge in popularity, they’re still outside of the mainstream; it’s no wonder that there is so much misinformation about what happens when you drop meat, eggs, and dairy from your meals. Unfortunately, many of the myths about this way of eating could deter people from giving veganism a try, especially if they fear that plant-based diets fall short on nutrition or are unappealing and restrictive.  Here are five issues that no one should worry about when they start eating vegan-style.

Myth #1: You’ll feel awful when you first go vegan because your body will be detoxing.

Fact: It doesn’t matter what you eat; your body is constantly producing harmful compounds and working hard to neutralize or excrete them. Complex systems involving the liver, kidneys and other organs are part of a very effective detoxification system that operates continuously in both vegans and meat-eaters. Although healthy eating may help these systems function at peak performance, there is no such thing as a “detox diet.” You won’t start shedding huge amounts of toxic material when you go vegan. As long as you are eating a well-balanced diet based on whole plant foods, you should feel just fine from day one of your vegan experience.

Myth #2: Plant foods are incomplete because they’re missing essential amino acids.

Fact: All plant foods that provide any protein at all—which includes all grains, legumes, soy products, nuts, seeds and vegetables—contain every one of the essential amino acids. Except for soyfoods, they are all a little low in one or two of them, but it doesn’t actually matter. Eating a variety of plant foods that includes a few servings of legumes every day—no special food combining at meals is necessary—supplies plenty of the amino acids that are essential for health.

Myth #3: Vegan diets are low in fat

Fact: Vegan diets are somewhat lower in fat than those of the average American, but not by a lot. Expert perspectives on fat have shifted over the past couple of decades and nutritionists recognize now that super-low-fat intake isn’t necessary for good health. The type of fat in your meals matters much more than the amount. And since the fat in vegan foods is the healthy unsaturated kind, vegans don’t need to worry about higher fat foods like nuts, seeds, soyfoods, avocados, and olives. Even vegetable oils fit into healthy vegan eating plans. Most vegans enjoy salad dressings, nut butters, veggies cooked in olive oil, tofu, hummus, and sometimes veggie meats and cheeses — all foods that provide the culinary benefits of fat without the health risks.

Myth #4: Vegan diets are boring and restrictive

Fact: It’s true that vegans drop whole categories of food from their diet, so yes, they have fewer food choices. But the reality is that many people experience greater variety in their diet when they start exploring vegan options. Had they not gone vegan, they might never have tried roasted vegetable pizza, grilled tempeh with spicy peanut sauce, barbecued seitan, or fruit crumble topped with cashew cream. Vegans eat burgers and fries, grilled vegetables, spicy curries, Asian stir-fries, veggie sushi, macaroni and cheese, and pasta with sundried tomato pesto. They drink wine, beer and hot chocolate, and snack on tortilla chips and dips, popcorn, and potato chips. Vegan desserts include rich chocolate cakes, doughnuts, and ice cream made from coconut milk. There are great cookbooks for every vegan eating style, too, including entire books devoted to vegan cookies, vegan parties, vegan barbecues, and vegan burgers. Plug the words “vegan recipe” into an internet search engine and you’ll see that vegan diets are anything but boring.

Myth #5: A vegan diet requires vitamin B12 supplements, so it’s not a natural diet for humans.

Fact: Who knows what the “natural” diet of humans is — or if there even is such a thing? As humans evolved, so did eating habits based on availability, genetics, and climate. Simply moving around the globe changed diets and dietary needs. For example, our ancestors used to get all of their vitamin D from sun exposure. Now, populations that live far from the equator often need supplements or fortified foods to get enough. It doesn’t really matter that this isn’t the way we evolved to get vitamin D.  Given the wide range in eating habits throughout the world, and the evolution of food choices, it’s not likely that there is some single natural way of eating. Vegans aren’t the only ones who need to supplement with vitamin B12, either. The Institute of Medicine—the group that establishes nutrient recommendations for Americans—says that all people over the age of 50 should supplement with B12 since many older people can’t absorb this vitamin well from animal foods. Rather than worry about what’s “natural,”—  a question that’s impossible to answer — we should focus on choosing a diet that supports human health and nutritional needs while doing the least harm possible. A vegan diet supplemented with vitamin B12 makes the most sense in today’s world.

Virginia Messina,  One Green PlanetVirginia Messina, MPH, RD: Ginny is a dietitian specializing in vegan nutrition. She is a former co-author of the American Dietetic Association’s position on vegetarian diets and of the first textbook on vegetarian diets written for health professionals. Ginny was a dietetics instructor at Central Michigan University and a dietitian for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. Her goal is to share the best and most up-to-date information on vegan nutrition and to make ethical eating easy and realistic for everyone. She writes about a variety of issues related to health and animal rights on her blog TheVeganRD and as the National Vegan Examiner at Examiner.com.

Carrots Image Source

Well Said!

Here’s my recipe for the day – Test drive this delicious recipe for Thanksgiving – sure to be a crowd pleaser!

Roasted “Rooters” and Mash                    400 degrees – 45-50 minutes (serves 8-10)

 

1 Large turnip                                       1 tbsp of fresh chopped lavender leaf & flowers*

1 Large sweet potato                           1 tsp dried lavender or rosemary

1 Parsnip )                                               1 tsp sea salt

1 large russet potato                             1 tsp cracked pepper

1 golden beet                                          1 tsp dried thyme

1 leek                                                        3 tbsp Earth Balance Vegan Butter

1 garlic whole head                                2 dashes of cayenne pepper

½ cup (more or less) plain Soy Milk*   1 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice

3-4  tbsp olive oil

 

  1.      Spray cooking oil on a large shallow baking pan or  large cookie sheet.  Clean and peel  all root vegetables and chop into large 1” cubes (except garlic).  Peel outer layer of garlic head and cut off pointed end to expose tops of cloves.
  2.       Combine olive oil, dried lavender, thyme, salt and pepper in very large mixing bowl.  Add vegetables, and toss until well coated.  Pour into prepared pan (leaving out the garlic) and spread evenly.
  3.      Place in preheated oven on middle rack.  Roast for 20 minutes and then stir vegetables and add garlic head to pan.  Roast another 25 minutes until vegetables are fork tender**.
  4.      Place roasted vegetables into large pan or dutch oven with tight lid (to keep warm).  Add butter, lemon juice, cayenne and fresh lavender (save flowers for garnish).  Use potato smasher to mash adding milk a little at a time until desired consistency.  Taste and add more salt and pepper if desired.   (*If making potato cakes, remove 2 cups of veges before adding milk).

 

*If using all dried herbs decrease by half.

**Vegetables can be microwaved in large bowl for 3-5 minutes to decrease cooking time.  Then toss in oil spice blend.  Roast for 20-25 minutes until fork tender. 

 

Also note:  This recipe is can be made more sweet than savory.  Use 2 sweet potatoes instead of russet and large carrot instead of leek.  Add ½ tsp coriander in place of rosemary and 1 tsp of ginger (fresh or jarred) instead of thyme.  Use coconut milk in place of soy.  Add a dash of cinnamon – yummm!

Vegan Pot Luck


  Catering  Fresh “caters” to all tastes, with the focus on clean, fresh foods.   However, for me, my personal choice is  vegan/vegetarian  fare.  I had the pleasure last Saturday of attending my first vegan pot luck.  I met some fun, passionate people (hi  Teresa (sp).   It seems everyone has their own reasons for eating vegan; to save the animals to save the planet, to save their bodies or all of the above.  I became intrigued with the idea years ago and it’s been an entertaining, satisfying  journey.   My mission is to create healthy recipes that everyone enjoys (even carnivores).  Everyone knows that eating more fruits and vegetables is good for us.   If the palate is convinced that vegan is delicious, then no matter the cause, everyone and everything benefits.  

 For those who need another reason, how about the “bottom line”.  To raise a cow to slaughter, you have to water and feed the crop and then water and feed the cow.  Doesn’t it make more sense to just water and feed one time?  Not only would medical cost plummet, but the family grocery bill could be slashed in half just by decreasing the amount of animal products consumed by the average family.  “Food for thought America”.    Here’s a great summertime gazpacho for that left-over watermelon from  your Labor Day picnic. 

“SMOKEY” WATERMELON GAZPACHO    (Makes 8-10 servings)

 8 cups of seedless water melon (1/2 cubed small)            1 ½ tsp sea salt

2 tomatoes diced                                                                       3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 yellow or red bell pepper diced                                            3 tbsp white balsamic vinegar

1 cucumber peeled, seeded and diced                                   1 ½ tsp smoked paprika

2 jalapenos seeded and diced                                                   ¼  tsp ground chipotle pepper

¼ cup purple onion diced (sweet)                                            Juice from 1 large lime

½ cup chopped cilantro                                                              2 garlic cloves minced

1 cup diced and peeled mango or peach                                 2 tbsp fresh chopped basil

 

For a pureed version,  throw all ingredients in processor except cilantro and basil. Puree in batches.  I like it chunky.   Leave out about ¼ of the fruits and vegetables to stir in after processing.  Add herbs last. 

Enjoy! 

Follow me at cateringfreshnews.com

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 110 other followers