The funny thing about some of life's troubles is
they often creep up on you .. be it ever so slowly
One day you think
“Huh .. I don't quite have the energy I did yesterday .. or for that matter .. the day before”
“I didn't sleep the best last night. Come to think about it .. I've been up at 2 am roaming the house with the kitty cats .. for quite some time now”
“I've gained a few pounds over the past couple of years. How come the tricks I relied upon my 20s and 30s .. don't seem to be working anymore. Oh oh .. “
” My favorite foods like .. homemade bread and rice pudding. I used to eat them without my feeling bloated the next morning. Now I can't remember the last time my tummy felt happy .. as a general rule”
If symptoms come on overnight .. most certainly they would garner our attention. The problem is .. when trouble starts slowly .. how easy is it to gradually accept it and fold it of our new normal? Somewhere in the pit of our gut .. we know something is off .. but because we aren't really sure what to do about it .. we chalk it up to age .. and learn to get by
That is, until one day
your body decides it's time to get your full attention .. and your sweet husband is carting you off to the emergency room with something like a
When we're young .. our bodies are incredibly forgiving. As we age .. the culmination of all our vices becomes far more apparent. Having been healthy pretty much all of my life .. this has been my first real wake-up call.
Yes, the stone is gone, and on the surface, life returned to normal .. except for one small thing. The nagging thoughts in the back of my mind .. What message was my body sending? What things can I change .. to prevent this from ever happening again?
For those who follow The Veggies .. you'll know I've been pursuing an education in holistic nutrition. The best thing about what I've been studying? The idea that optimal health is predicated on a healthy gut. I also know enough to know .. what it is .. I don't know.
Over the past couple of years, my body's slowly been telling me something is off. Not terribly .. but enough to know it's time for a course correction.
So I've hired a food coach. In Dana's words
“3-in-1. This is what I do. Functional medicine, nutrition, and cognitive behavioral therapy”
In my words? She specializes in holistic nutrition .. as well as digestive health. She's going to help get me back on track.
Last Friday morning .. we met for the first time .. via Skype. She in Manhattan .. and me in Iowa. She was smart .. funny .. and all around wonderful. We put together a plan
(much more to come .. )
A few of my meals during the past couple of days have included chia seeds. They're one of the highest sources of omega-3 fatty acids (after flax) .. as well as one of the most digestible plant proteins .. and an excellent source of amino acids .. minerals .. and antioxidants.
Trivia: the seeds were used by ancient Native American civilizations as an energy-boosting endurance food
Chia seeds are best eaten raw .. after being soaked in liquid. Any liquid they're added to will be thickened .. so they're a great addition to desserts where a thick consistency is the goal
Being mucilaginous seeds (those that thicken the liquid they're soaked in) .. they're great for the health of our digestive tract. Unlike flax .. you won't need to grind them to benefit from their nutritional value
A few notes about the recipe: It's wonderful with any fruit you'd like to add. If you'd like more of a pudding consistency .. up the number of chia seeds to 1/4 cup or so.
~ Adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod
- 3 Tbsp chia seeds
- 1¼ pounds peaches, pitted and quartered (~ 3 large)
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil (** or coconut butter)
- 1¼ cup almond milk (homemade is best)
- 1½ tsp vanilla
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- 2 - 3 tsp coconut sugar, optional .. with the amount varying on your taste for sweet and the sweetness of your peaches (** honey or any sweetener of your choice would also be great)
- In your blender add the almond milk, peaches, coconut butter, vanilla, cinnamon, and sweetener (if using).
- Blend on high, until completely smooth
- Pour half the mix into a quart-size jar, add the chia seeds, and shake well. (Make sure none of the seeds have stuck to the sides or bottom of the jar)
- Add the other half of the blended peach mix, tighten the lid, and shake until the seeds have distributed evenly
- Put the jar into the fridge and allow to chill for 4 hours, or overnight.
- You'll know it's done when the smoothie has thickened and is thoroughly chilled
% Protein: 9
% Carbs: 66
% Fat: 2