*Points Subject to change per serving size
Wake up, yawn, cringe at the sunlight (or lack thereof) sigh (sometimes cry) repeat…
This has been my experience for longer than I’d like to admit. It’s my hard honest truth that no matter how lovingly a cappuccino, cup of coffee, or any caffeinated beverage is prepared for me, by myself OR my favorite local cafe, some mornings, I just cannot do it. Some days its the hardest task to just will myself to simply exist.
“What an ugly little secret I keep…” I have thought on some mornings, languidly preparing for the day before me. Some days are just full. Full of meetings, tests, get togethers or gatherings that I could attribute my reluctance to start the day to, but more often than not, my day has been clear, or even filled with an abundance of sunshine, activity and sometimes love to make me feel wildly convicted at my lackluster disposition. I have often thought of how I could possibly have a “chemical imbalance” and what that would mean in terms of my general holistic approach to my health. I’ve felt even worse at the prospect of taking antidepressants, especially because of the stigma surrounding such a thing (though that stigma is ever fading as we bring awareness to mental health in this time.)
I’ve come to understand more today the reasoning behind my struggle, after my pursuit to find the overall reason of my – dare I say – depression rather than the symptoms. Cue many months of blood work and monitoring, some weight struggles and vitamin deficiency’s, and welcome my new friend Hashimoto.
Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis to be exact.
Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis is an autoimmune condition that triggers my immune system to attack my own self (as if I wasn’t doing enough of that for many years BUT I digress.) For the sake of transparency, there are so many palpable feelings I have at having a real and tangible understanding of my body and my emotions for the past 6 or 7 years (maybe more.) I have struggled in silence with the symptoms of a very treatable condition for so long because of my own aversion to medication. Finally — while figuratively — a hard pill to swallow (the supplement, not so much — it’s so tiny!) I gave in to my body’s calling to see a physician and begin treatment. I am still very much in the beginning stages of my diagnosis and treatment but I can safely say without hesitation that the effects of that powerful, albeit tiny, pill are definitely noticeable. I notice it when I wake in the morning and breath a deep breath free of anxiety and when I look out the window and notice how vibrant the day is without the looming sadness and all around lethargy that I have lived with for so long. I noticed it the first week with a real appetite and still very evident weight loss. I am learning every day that I have no need to feel shame over symptoms of a condition that I have no control over (my family history plays a strong role in my case) My desire for a child in the very near future spurred me to monitor my condition and my desire to care for that said child in the future has spurred me to continue treatment for a foreseeable lifetime (unless otherwise directed by my physician) It’s a journey unique to me that I have hidden and struggled with for far too long and I write this with a sigh of relief for those who are in the beginning of their own journey who can draw some comfort from the fact that someone with as much of an aversion to the “pill pushing” and “symptom treating” society we currently live in is finally OKAY with taking proper care of herself, both physically and emotionally.
**Please keep in mind that all situations are unique and different and I am only sharing the beginning of my own.**
There is something about fresh baked carbohydrates that make me swoon! 5 Smart Points for a yeasty tender roll with a slight bite on the outside is a bargain to me for sure. I can think about how 2 slices of bread on a regular day from my local supermarket is 4 smart points for two slices or I can think about the love and satisfaction that comes from baking from scratch — a bread with no added ingredients but the basics – milk, yeast and butter – who could deny such a special treat?
2 cups warm milk
2 Packets of Hodgson Mills Instant Yeast
1/8 – 1/4 c white granulated Sugar
2 teaspoons Pink Himalayan Sea Salt
8 Tbsp Softened Unsalted Butter
2 large eggs
6.5 cups bread flour
The spatchcock, also known as “spattlecock” is in this case, whole chicken, prepared for roasting by removing the backbone of the chicken, and flattening it out before cooking. This is also known as butterflying. Not only is this an easy and fast way to roast a whole bird, I just love the look of a finished spatchock chicken. It reminds me of an alternate life, with a farm but still the same love of cooking, entertaining and all things rustic and family style. The juice of these sweet tomatoes paired with the herbaceous butter spread on this chicken lends moisture and complexity to this very easy weeknight dinner. Serve with a pilaf or a salad and you have dinner and lunch and perhaps a few snacks in between for up to 3 days.
2tsp Sesame oil
1Tbsp Garlic Powder
Salt to taste
2 c Broccoli
1/2 c Thawed Frozen Peas
1/4 c Shredded Carrots
2 c Cooked Brown Rice
1 8oz Salmon Fillet
1 Hass Avocado
2Tbsp Bragg’ liquid amino’s (or low sodium soy)
I’ve always had what seemed to be an illicit love affair with burgers. It was a favorite food probably upon exiting the womb. I can guiltily unashamedly say that I have enjoyed the love hate relationship with mammoth burgers, I’m talking juicy squirt you in the eye burgers, for much of my life.Way back in the day, I would make my way to the greasiest fast foodiest place and treat myself to that said burger and then berate myself for not adhering to my vigilant diet NAY plan for healthful eating. I would then give up on anything healthy, period, and just throw in the towel, thinking:What’s the use? It’s over!I would then willfully resort to death by cookies!I have to tell you having the new understanding that I have, has really helped me greatly in times such as these. This new understanding whispers sweetly and lovingly to me when I am hard on myself, she says:
Hey you! Know what? You’ve exercised most days this week
“X” amount of calories is probably a lot to have in a single meal, snack, treat or indulgence but coupled with your consistent healthy eating resolve on most days and how you will probably have a healthy Spicy Sesame Salmon Bowl for dinner, I think you earnedtheburger this week.
So the moral of this story is: Eat Junkfood…I mean mostly healthfully and mindfully, live a life of wellness and be happy! A life of wellness sometimes includes indulgent treats and just so you know I’ve learned this from repeated failure.