No Kombucha on the Ceiling!

My kombucha has finished it’s second fermentation…and it’s pretty darn good.  It didn’t explode all over the kitchen either!  I was prepared…towel, goggles, dishwashing gloves, high waters….haha, just kidding about the high waters.  But seriously, I was prepared for it to pop, but it wasn’t as crazy as I thought it was going to be (thank, goodness).  I can’t wait to keep trying new juices and fruit infusions.  I have ginger ready for my next batch.  I know what I’m giving everyone for Christmas this year, too.

I went to a Giants game on Sunday, and I was in a suite.  They had food in the suite and I was hungry.  I figured the meatballs and salad wouldn’t be that bad…needless to say, yesterday I wasn’t feeling so good.  Pretty much laid in bed all day.  I don’t know if it was related to the food or being at the game all day, either way, I’m convinced I ate something I shouldn’t have.  Saw a friend of mine I haven’t seen in awhile, and he lost a bunch of weight.  He looks awesome.  I asked how he did it…his answer…Paleo (but not super strict).  He lost 50 lbs.!  See, another success story.  We are both friends with Dr. Noah, so his guidance has been awesome…clearly.

I haven’t tried the bulletproof coffee yet, but I want to try it soon!  I need to check on my pickles and sauerkraut later…hopefully they are thriving!

“A good life is when you assume nothing, do more, need less, smile often, dream big, laugh a lot, and realize how blessed you are.”

It’s Alive!

My first batch of kombucha was a wonderful success!  Today was day 7…the baby kombucha got a little bit thicker…and I gave it a try!  It was so good and kombucha-y!  On Friday I picked up some flip top bottles and a funnel.  I poured my kombucha into 2 bottles and added white grape juice to both (3 parts kombucha to 1 part juice).  I’m going to try it in 3 days…hoping it doesn’t explode all over my kitchen ceiling (my Mom would be so mad!)!!  Any tips to opening the bottle?  Noah?  Bueller?

Sadly, my first try at pickles was an epic fail.  I don’t know what happened, but they were mushy and smelled pretty bad.  Upon tasting them (bravely), all I can say is…they tasted bad.  :  It happens.  The sauerkraut looks and smells good so far!  I didn’t let the failure of my pickles get my down.  I disposed of the “pickles”, got another jar, and tried again!  We’ll see how this one goes, hopefully better than the first.  I suppose if this was easy enough to get on the first try, everyone would do it.  I’m glad my kombucha came out awesome.  I started another jar, too!  It doesn’t even really take that long to set up.

I used my slow cooker to make honey garlic chicken for dinner…SO good!  Thank goodness for that slow cooker.

“The ability to discipline yourself to delay gratification in the short term in order to enjoy greater rewards in the long term is the indispensable prerequisite for success.”

-Brian Tracy-

Be Happy. Be Healthy. Be Awesome.

I checked in on my kombucha today…annnndddd we have a baby kombucha!  Yay!  I was so excited to see it.  Noah said to let it be so it can get thicker…and that’s what I intend to do.  I’m going to work on some FroYo this weekend with the ice cream maker I bought a few weeks ago.  There’s directions for it in the Fermented book I borrowed from Noah (which I will give back soon…I promise).

Okay, so tomorrow will be the first time I wear jeans in MONTHS!!  I overhauled my closet to see all the stuff that I kinda put away since it was too small, and most of it fits again.  I am currently wearing a size medium t-shirt that I haven’t worn in close to a year!  Amazing things I tell you, amazing things.  I can’t even believe it.  Oh, and I bought this awesome pencil skirt a LONG time ago…kind of fit the first day I got it, then it was too small.  I held onto it in hopes that one day it would fit…well, today was the day!

Noah gave me some Paleo Wraps to try, and I put some chicken in them…they are doable.  It wasn’t like the wraps I used to know, but it was better than Paleo Bread.  I’m going to slow cook some buffalo chicken tomorrow, and use the wraps!  I can’t wait.  Last time I made buffalo chicken it was SUPER SPICY, so this time I need to tweak the recipe a little bit (so my Mom can actually enjoy it).

I’m loving eating healthy and feeling good.  I can even tell how different it is when I go to the gym.  I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again…make sure you take progress pictures!!  You’ll be shocked when you start to compare them.

“I think people forget that feeling good is as important as looking good, although a pretty dress never hurt anyone.”

Leptin Resistance

Life with a CrockPot is so wonderful!  On Sunday, Dr. Noah mentioned a recipe for Bison & Butternut Cocoa Chili in the Practical Paleo book…needless to say, I tried it!  It came out really good, just a little too spicy (and I even cut out some of the hot stuff).  Next time I will use less chili powder for sure.  And for the bison, well I’m shocked at how good it was!  Did you know that bison is always grass fed?  Amazing.  Then yesterday I made a Paleo version of Chicken Cacciatore in my CrockPot…I took a few minutes to cut everything up and prepare it when I got home from work, turned it on, and took a nap.  When I woke up a few hours later…my dinner was ready!  Paleo made easy, for sure.  Now I’m scouring the internet for recipes.  Today, I’ll probably prepare a london broil to eat for tomorrow, and maybe the day after.   It makes life on my schedule, much easier.  I won’t be using the CrockPot for every meal, but I can always prepare a meal, and do a CrockPot one at the same time, as opposed to cooking 3 meals at once to have them prepared for a few days.  Get my drift?  :c)

Okay, so I enjoy researching random things (as you have noticed).  Came across the term “leptin”.  Leptin is that little trigger in our bodies that says “Hey, eat more!”, or “Hey, stop eating!”.  Unfortunately, we see many people who are leptin resistant.  When this happens, a reset needs to take place.  If you eat a Paleolithic type diet (low carb – high fat) and do high intensity interval training, you can achieve the reset.  It takes longer for some, but it balances out your body.

Have you tried butter in your coffee?  Me either, but it’s on my list of things to do (probably this weekend).  This guy David Asprey came up with it and called it “Bulletproof Coffee”; it actually originated in Tibet.  It apparently is like a meal replacement…since it provides a bunch of energy.  The ingredients you ask…well, grass fed butter, coconut oil, and coffee…of course!  I’ll let you know how that goes.

“Take care of your body.  It’s the only place you have to live in.”

Baby Kombucha!

Today was a great day!  Woke up, made an awesome breakfast…eggs, pineapple salsa, and bacon!  Then met up with Dr. Noah to pick up protein powder, and for a quick lesson in fermentation…and kombucha.  Noah is a veteran and master at this fermentation thing…for sure.  Happy he spent the time to talk to me, and lent me his fermentation book.  Needless to say, I went out, bought some mason jars, cabbage, organic tea, organic sugar, and started my fermentation journey…oh, and I also bought a crock pot!!!!!!

Noah told me this awesome story about how he started making kombucha, but I’ll let him tell you about it in another post.  :c)  He gave me a baby SCOBY to start…but this baby kombucha thing (super scientific name for it) is from a lineage of at least 10 years, could be longer.  I will now proudly (and hopefully) carry on the lineage!  Long live the baby kombucha!

Once I got home (after shopping for all this stuff), I started cutting up cucumbers and jalepenos.  I started the fermenting process of pickles, and pickled jalepenos…and I’m attempting to make sauerkraut.  I used the baby SCOBY I got, and my kombucha is now in the first step of fermentation.  I’m so excited!  Thanks to Noah for taking the time out to tell me about this…and trusting me enough to give me the starter for my kombucha.  I will update you in a week on the progress.

I also picked up a book called “Practical Paleo” that Noah recommended.  At quick glance, it looked informative.  After I finish “Grain Brain”, I’ll start reading that.   Ahhh…what a good day!  I have a feeling I’m going to be fermenting a lot of things now!  haha  Thanks, Noah!

“Paleo: It’s a no grainer.”

Supplements and Paleo

So sitting here today I was wondering, where do I get my calcium and vitamin D from if I don’t eat dairy any more?  I do take a vitamin D supplement, but I had a few questions about that, too.  Google is my best friend, seriously.

Okay so what did I find out?  Awesome things!  I read that if you improve your diet, you’ll get calcium from the food you eat (obviously…but other than the stuff you don’t eat on Paleo).  So for anyone who has a dairy intolerance, listen up!  Spinach, kale, okra, and collards are good sources of calcium (all Paleo; for this blog, I’m not going to talk about the non-paleo calcium sources).  For the record, I LOVE KALE!  Sardines, salmon, and orange juice are a few other good sources. (c:  Fatty fish, beef liver, and egg yolks are good sources of vitamin D, but the amount is small.  Just remember, our bodies have the capability of producing vitamin D on its own!  Just go in the sun for a few minutes a day…let your skin soak up some sun, and you will naturally produce the vitamin D.

After doing some research, I found this article:  3 Supplements to Round Out Your Paleo Diet.  I take vitamin D and omega 3s as a supplement, but the probiotics I get from drinking kombucha.  I’ve had coconut yogurt, but found out that the one I eat is not Paleo.  So I’ll have to figure out some other sources.  Probiotics seems rather important, especially when referring to the health of our guts.  This whole leaky gut thing has got me kinda bothered.  I am almost positive that this is something I suffered/am recovering from.  Poor diet, medications (antibiotics, which my doctor prescribes for anything), stress, and neurological conditions (brain trauma, which I suffered from when I was 10), can all cause this condition.  Leaky gut can cause heart failure, depression, brain fog, eczema or other skin conditions, obesity, diabetes, allergies, or asthma…awful.  Also, if your mom had bad gut flora, she could have passed this on to you!  Thanks, mom!

Another disclosure, I only speak of observations, and information I get from articles online…I’m finding Paleo works for me; it may not work for you.  Just make sure you do your research and educate yourself!  You have to personalize your approach to taking care of yourself because we are all individuals with different needs.

I am doing Paleo for myself.  I was sick and tired of being sick and tired.  I needed a change, and finally, I found one that works that’s actually enjoyable.  I share my story, because it could help you.  I came across this testimonial, Andy’s 30 days of Paleo, and absolutely love it.  I can relate to a T.

“Difficult times in life are like washing machines; they twist us, spin us, and knock us around, but in the end we come out cleaner, brighter, and better than before.”

Meal Preppin’ Machine

My most productive days are my favorite, such as today.  Prepped meals for the week, or at least the next few days.  I’m starting a new gym routine as well.  All this food prep was really starting to interfere with my gym time…so, I decided that I would go to the gym Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday…Monday, Wednesday, Friday I’ll prep all my meals.  Seems like it could work; off to a great start today.

Today meal prep included: buffalo chicken (with almond butter), kale and sausage salad, broccoli and roasted endives, and sausage in sauce.  HOLY MOLY!  Oh, and I hard boiled 4 eggs, and made some eggs with pineapple salsa for breakfast along with some of the broccoli and roasted endives.  I made up most of the recipes on my own today…and I wrote them down, so I’ll work on getting them up on the blog.  So now, I have meals prepared for a few days, and I freed up my time for the gym.  Got in the gym this past weekend and still so sore…I love it!  Ran a 9 minute mile, and had ZERO pain in my legs doing it.  I lost 26.5 lbs. since the last time I ran, and I could definitely tell the weight was off.

At this point, even though my lifestyle is referred to as Paleo, I don’t feel like that label matters.  I just live healthy.  Instead of buying a bottle of something off a shelf, I make it from scratch.  I really enjoy this.  I enjoy everything about living this way.  It’s fun and rewarding when you cook a meal, and it actually tastes really good!

“Don’t care about what other people think of you.

 There will always be those people who want to see you fail

because they can’t succeed.” 


Paleo Positivity

I try to post all the very positive things about how Paleo has changed my life, but I just don’t think there’s ever enough time to post them all!  I try.  Since August 9, I have experienced life as I never have before…that’s not even an exaggeration.  Don’t get me wrong, life was great before this, but I think I’m more in tune with my body now.  I feel great, and I’m starting to regain my confidence.  I just feel good.  I haven’t had headaches, or cramps in my legs, or been so anxious that it dragged me down and ruined my week.  I haven’t had to waste anytime thinking about how awful I feel physically and mentally, because c’mon, that’s just so not Paleo. (c: Paleo-istic living challenges me.  It makes me think about other things, like new meals and treats I can make!

I’ve tried every diet, detox, “make you skinny” drink, 10-day miracle, fat loss pill, “makes abs” pill, workout regimine…everything!  Every single one is the same.  You make it through the first 2 or 3 days, you feel kinda meh about it, the next day…it’s all over.  Nothing was ever satisfying.  But with Paleo, and it being a lifestyle change, you don’t have to stress the fact that you can only eat every 3 hours, or you need to juice, or have only 1200 calories a day.  Paleo, as long as you stick to it, and once you really get used to it…is mindless.  It’s as easy as it used to be for me to grab a Ramen noodle soup, throw it in the microwave, and 2:00 minutes later…BAM!  Lunch was served.  It just takes a little longer, but my meals are so much better, and more tasty than that little cup of Ramen!

The amount of energy that I have now is incredible.  I never thought I’d feel like I had energy ever again.  Years of dragging on and doing the same old thing, then one day making the decision to do this…best decision I’ve ever made!  I’ve been monitoring my BMI, and I’m happy to say I’m comfortably into the healthy spectrum of it!  Amazing.  I am walking, living proof that a Paleo lifestyle can be successful.  I wouldn’t have believed it if I didn’t see and experience it for myself (like most people).  I encourage anyone struggling with any of the issues I’ve talked about, or not, to try this.  It’s not abtrusive, it’s just changing what you eat mostly.  If you need a support system (important factor), you can contact me.

It’s a wonderful feeling when your friends (close or aquaintance) go out of their way to tell you how great you look, and show an interest in how you’re doing; I believe that this is important.  You have to remember that there’s always going to be people, friends or otherwise, who sadly don’t want to see you succeed or do good…don’t worry about them.  Believe in yourself; tell me your story.  If you have made the choice to change your life, and you’re working on getting to a goal, then you have inspired me.  Be an inspiration.  We all need encouragement and support in all we do…and that’s what I hope my blog does!  Change one thing at a time…each step, big or small, is a step in the right direction.

Oh man, you’re probably thinking…look at this crazy lady, getting all ‘inspirational’…I’m sorry, I’m not sorry.  Haha.  I just feel good, and I want people to know!  Now, go enjoy your day, and don’t forget to spay and neuter your pets!

“I’ll accept with poise, with grace when they draw my name from the lottery,

and they’ll say ‘all the salt in the world couldn’t melt that ice’. 

I’m the one who gets away. 

I’m a New Jersey success-story,

and they’ll say ‘Lord, give me a chance to shake that hand’.”

-J.E.W. Big Casino

Learning About Paleo and Autism

My weight loss is still happening, and I couldn’t be happier with myself.  I’m almost at the first goal I’ve set for myself!  Last night, Paleo pizza for dinner (red onions, Paleo cheese, hot peppers, mushrooms, and tomatoes), including a dessert Paleo pizza (half pumpkin butter with Enjoy Life chocolate chips and half with an almond butter bacon mix).  Yum!  Leftovers for lunch today…can’t wait!

I’ve been doing a lot of reading about Paleo and Autism, and how this diet can potentially help people suffering with autism.  I don’t know much about Autism, except a generalization about it.  I’m starting to gain a better understanding now, having done some research.  There isn’t really a definitive case stating what actually causes Autism, but most sources seem to link it to genetic and environmental factors.  What I thought was really interesting was the fact that diabetes and thyroid problems in mothers during pregnancy were prevalent factors in children with Autism.  Based on everything I’ve read about Paleo and a Gluten Free diet, both are said to help prevent/control diabetes and thyroid conditions.  While there are many different theories as to what causes Autism, I’m only focusing on ones that perhaps a Paleo/gluten free diet could prevent from happening, or repair.

Many children with Autism are said to have “Leaky Gut”, and leaky gut can be prevented by living a Paleo lifestyle, or at the very least gluten and dairy free.  Now what I don’t understand is how easy it is for me to just Google “Paleo and Autism”, and come up with all of this information, but still it seems that doctors turn a blind eye.  I get that sometimes people who are into holistic medicine, and healthy living are viewed as a little bit off (myself included), but what do we have to lose?  Changing your diet a little is a lot safer than taking the latest drug or “miracle pill”, is it not?  All it is, is eating differently.  I understand this takes a lot of time and effort, but still.  Remember, Google is your friend.  You can find anything…try Googling “kid friendly Paleo”…go ahead, I’ll wait for you.  …see, you can find ANYTHING!

Still need to do more research…

Check out Dr. Emily Deans blog…there’s a lot of information on Autism and Paleo on there.

“Everyone is a genius.  

But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree,

it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

-Albert Einstein-


Grain on the Brain

Hello loyal blog followers, and new followers!  Just wanted to write a quick entry…

I really enjoy doing research on certain topics along with paleo.  I like to see what I can come up with, currently doing some research on a specific topic, but I’ll tell you more about it once I gather my thoughts.  I know, the suspense is killlllling you…you’ll live.  haha

Okay, so I was told, and I do stress the word TOLD…to read this book called “Grain Brain”.  Well, I purchased the book and I’m glad I did.  I didn’t get too far yet, but it’s a really interesting read so far, (thanks Mike).  I think I’m finding it more interesting because I’m starting to make the same discoveries on my own, from my experience.  I will tell you this for now, as a person who suffered with severe anxiety for half my life, living Paleo has significantly decreased my anxiety.  I’ll talk about that more in a later blog.  I just think that this (Paleo) may be the thing that has to potential to change a lot; obesity, disease, and mental health issues.  I recommend this book to anyone, it will make you think.

I’m glad I’m already well into this journey…can’t wait to see what the future holds.

“Part of starting your journey to health and fitness begins with seeing yourself as you want to be.  Believe it, then go after it!”

-Stephen Luke Fitness-