Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Shakes

Throughout my adult life, I would get the shakes. What do I mean by this? I would be going through the day and suddenly be drained of all energy. My hands would start shaking, and then I would need something sweet - fast! I remember that this would happen a lot when I was teaching. So, I would keep a stash of classroom party chocolates, and would stuff my face at 2:00 pm (my free period). I would tell my doctors about this, they would order blood tests, and they would tell me that all was well. But I still would get the shakes...

After my cancer diagnosis, I read some books about cancer and decided to keep a strict diet:
  • no sugar
  • no meat
  • no white flour
  • no dairy
  • whole grains
  • organic vegetables
  • organic fruits 
In the beginning, I was very strict with myself. It drove my husband and parents crazy. I wouldn't eat a lot of the things that they would offer me. On top of that, the hormone drug that I was taking at the time made me very sensitive to strong smells and flavors. It was kind of like morning sickness. I couldn't touch certain foods and the thought of others made me queasy.

Brown rice was the bulk of my diet. I was so glad that I had something that could fill me up. Eating fresh vegetables and some fruit also helped. Anything fresh. This made my digestive system work really well. At that time, someone sent us a Vitamix, so my husband would make kale, spinach, and carrot shakes for me. We were so thankful for that gift because it is so much easier to drink vegetables than to chew on them.

But then, these pesky cravings would start to bubble up inside of me. Once in a great while, I would break down and have my husband get me an Italian beef (a Chicago specialty) with fries. Then, I would go back to my brown rice and vegetables. Other times, I would want some Asian whipped cream cake or baked cheesecake. Then, it was back to the brown rice.

During the holidays, I became a little more lax with what I ate. I craved the food that I grew up with in the United States (The Korean stuff was pretty healthy. I'm talking about the other stuff). Foods full of sugar. Foods that were fried. Foods full of carbs. And meat! I would have a nibble here and a nibble there. Then I would go back to the brown rice and vegetables. You get the picture.

I would like to share some observations:

  • Cakes and cookies seem a lot sweeter to me now.
  • Kale is good!
  • Italian beef sandwiches are still so good!
  • Less vegetables + processed foods = blocked system.
  • When I snuck two rolls that my husband got at the Japanese bakery, I got the shakes.
  • When I ate a scone that my husband got especially for me, I got the shakes again.
  • The time between craving things on my "not" list is getting longer.
  • Brown rice is brown rice and it is good for your system.
  • I still need some chocolate during some of my menopausal "don't-mess-with-me" days.
  • What you eat matters.

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