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Low carb/Paleo impending vacation fun!

Don’t you love it when you have a vacation impending? The excitement, the anticipation is almost palpable! What should you bring for clothes? What activities will you do? What will the food be like? What friends will you make and exciting things and places will you discover? Well take that excitement to the next level for a low carb/Paleo cruise. Get together a bunch of like-minded individuals devoted to healthy eating, nutrition and fitness and you have a recipe (pun intended) for a great time with humour, fun and great friends. There will be a few friends that can’t make this cruise but I hope to see them again next year. I’ll be making this a yearly event for as long as it’s organized. Count on it!

I am so glad I made the decision a year and a half ago to go on the 2011 Low carb cruise because, besides the decision to go on Atkins in the first place, was one of the best I’ve made in my life. I gained so much information, inner peace, personal insight and made such good friends on the last cruise that the decision to go again this year wasn’t even a decision! What better way to spend your vacation than spending a week sailing the Caribbean with like-minded people who “get you” and where you have been in your weight loss/health journey and know where you are going or want to be? People who “get” why you put extra butter on your food and stay away from the dessert tray and bread basket. As much as I love my friends and family, there’s something special about spending time with people who live the same dietary lifestyle you do and “get you”, or at the very least the way you eat. Many of them have lost a lot more weight than I have and deserve props for maintaining their healthy lifestyles just as well as I have.

The health/nutrition/low carb/Paleo seminars are going to be amazing and I can’t wait to spend our “at sea” days learning more about the Paleo way of eating. I hope to get inspired by the lectures! I just have to remember to get an aisle seat so I can step to the back of the room and stretch out my awful back because prolonged sitting kills it ;)

I can’t wait to see our Swedish friends again and hopefully learn some Swedish phrases. I can’t wait to see what Tom Naughton has put together to rib the speaking guests at our low carb/Paleo roast the night before we board the ship at the Meat er… Meet and Great dinner. I’ve seen the menu already and couldn’t help drooling at the yummy food we’ll be eating, even before we step foot on the ship! Best of all, I can’t wait to meet my cruise cabinmate who is Paleo and exudes awesomeness! We’ve facebooked and even skyped over this past year and I can’t wait to meet and spend time with her. It should be a great week. Just two weeks to go. I’d better get packing, methinks!

Low carb/Paleo <3,
Laurie aka. Avalanche.

This entry was posted on April 19, 2012. 2 Comments

Lost in the blogoshere… nope. Here I am! :)

Ok everyone… I’ve been a bad blogger and realize I haven’t typed a word in months!  So what better time to talk about food and my low carb lifestyle than on arguably the biggest food day of the year, Christmas.  I am Jewish, although non-practicing, especially the bacon loving part  ;)   but I wanted to wish everyone an awesome Christmas and Channukah or whatever you practice.

Now is the time of year to reflect on your accomplishments and look toward the New Year with enthusiasm and hope.  Be proud of what you have achieved in 2011 and vow to achieve even more in 2012.  I think this past year I am most proud of levelling up in derby and of helping a couple of friends find the healthy low carb lifestyle.  I know it has changed  both their lives immensely.  Not only do they look fantastic but they are healthy and have lots of energy.  Awesomesauce!

I am looking forward to the New Year for more than one reason.  It hasn’t snowed much yet here in Ontario so I am eager to throw on my planks and hit the slopes!  New Year’s weekend will be my first opportunity to ski and to spend time with the other patrollers in our rental house up north.  It will be fun spending New Year’s Eve with everyone!  I am also looking forward to spending some time at our beloved club Beaver Valley with my patrol friends (yes, I’ve heard the jokes about the club name… save it! lol). 

I have lost a few pounds this past year since the “low carb cruise” in May.  Although I’ve been low carbing for years I was in a plateau for awhile and found inspiration from the speakers and awesome personalities of my new low carbing friends on the cruise.  I realized that these people “got it” and didn’t see my way of eating as “freaky” or “weird” or that I was winding myself up for a heart attack by eating a high fat diet.  It was very empowering being with a group of people who have the same way of seeing food and nutrition and were supportive of my healthy low carb lifestyle.  I would like to thank them for inspiring me to start this blog to share the knowledge, especially my friend Jimmy Moore.  That was what I took most from our “at sea” seminars…. take your strengths and passion and run with it!  It is from that base which fires me up to help those who want it to change their health like I did.  Also, I’ve made a new friend and roommate for the new cruise this coming year.  Although we’ve talked on the phone and Skyped, I’m more than excited to meet her in person and hang out that week!  She is Paleo and I’m hoping to learn from her and compare notes on our low carb/Paleo lifestyles and different experiences.  I can’t wait to see my cruisemates again… as well as make some new friends!  :)

Here is hoping that 2012 holds nothing but joy, health and happiness for all my blog readers, your friends and family.  My New Year’s resolution will be not to neglect this blog for months at a time like I’ve recently done  ;)

 

LCHF <3,

Laurie

Being prepared… and facing challenges!

Well, I survived another Instructors’ weekend for Ski Patrol. Although I find it a little stressful, we have wonderful IT’s (Instructor Trainers) that make it so much easier. Getting recertified is always a challenge for me now with the way I eat.

I am used to having to prepare ahead of time due to the limited food options available to me over the course of the weekend. Pizza and cake are not my friends anymore and have been cut out of my “will”.

This year I brought an Atkins friendly lunch of veggies, sloppy joe and cut up hamburger with a piece of sliced havarti and a dollop of garlic butter… yes, Paleo is proving itself to be difficult for me. I had coconut milk in my coffee in the morning but had cream in my coffee the rest of the day; ok, I pick my “battles” when it comes to my WOE and trying the Paleo WOE (way of eating).

Fortunately I brought my own car and had some protein bars in the trunk on Saturday. I had a protein Jello packed in the lunchbag. Did I mention the microwave they had wasn’t functional? :(

So there I sat at lunch while everyone feasted on Pizza and Cake to celebrate one of the other Instructor’s birthdays with my Quest protein bar and a protein jello (which has a funny, unenjoyable aftertaste). It wasn’t much fun but at least it raised my blood sugars enough to function for the afternoon.

I used my derby knee pads quite a bit during the weekend for the kneeling things we had to do like CPR and patient assessment. I got some teasing due to wearing them but didn’t care because they definitely save your knees when you’re kneeling on cement so often. My mother complimented me that evening after I told her of this. One of my IT’s even said he thought it showed great preparation… (a trait admired in First Aid Instructors)… ok, I added the bracket remark… true though ;)

What’s my point to all this, my friends? Be your own person!! Although you “dance to the beat of your own drum” others will admire you. And even if they don’t the only person you have to answer to at the end of the day is yourself.

We went to a breakfast buffet on Sunday for lunch break and I ate the way I eat; protein, veggies, fat (butter), a bit of cheese, etc. They had a nice omellete station, and although I got the wrong omellette, it hit the spot smothered in whipped butter and salsa! Having to endure watching people eat desserts around me was difficult but I had a couple pieces of cheese and considered that dessert. I found out they had melon but was so full that it didn’t appeal to me at that point.

My exam went well Sunday afternoon because I was fuelled with protein and fat.

It takes courage to go “against the grain”, literally. Is it worth it though? You’d better believe it! To quote Shakespeare, “to thine self be true”. People may not understand the way you eat, even after explaining it to them, but the only person that has to understand it is you, my friends! Stay strong and know you are eating the way you do for you and your health.

LCHF, low carb and Paleo <3,
Laurie

This entry was posted on September 13, 2011. 1 Comment

Paleo-ish Challenge…. & Inspiration!

It’s been awhile since I’ve done a blog and it’s about time I do another. A lot has gone on lately and I’m very inspired!

I’ve been watching a few of the lectures from the Ancestral Health Symposium that took place in August in Los Angeles, CA. I love the technology of the internet and that if you miss an awesome lecture series you can catch up on the videos online. I would highly recommend seeing some of these seminars online… http://vimeo.com/ancestralhealthsymposium/videos

I’ve been reading Robb Wolf’s book “The Paleo Solution; The Original Human Diet” as well as seeing my friends Jimmy and Christine Moore getting fired up about the Paleo way of eating and it has gotten me wondering if dairy is really my friend after all. For those of you unaware of the differnce between Paleo vs. low carb or LCHF (Low Carb High Fat), essentially Paleo eliminates Dairy, believing the proteins in milk are as bad as the protein gluten is in wheat. As in Atkins, Paleo & Primal WOE (way of eating) has a “sliding scale” of how much dairy and carbs people can eat. As Jimmy Moore would say “your mileage may vary”.

So I’ve started my Paleo challenge today. If I do nothing else except cut out the cream in my coffee in the morning I will consider this challenge a success. I know I drink too many dairy carbs in a day for coffee and I want to see if cutting out the cream will make a difference in how I feel.

I am so proud of my friends lately. I have some friends who have approached me in counselling them in my WOE and lifestyle changes. I am more convinced than ever that this is why God has spared my health years ago (I nearly died; no joke)… to help people with bad health who want the help. It humbles me to help people change their lives for the better and get healthy and excited about life again. I know that for years I was merely existing in a body not suitable to what I wanted to accomplish in life or how I wanted to live.

It encourages me and fires my soul to see my friends get results, improve their health and not be hungry while doing it by eating a diet that nature has intended for us. Sugar, Wheat and Grain products are poison to us, as are some bad fats and Soy. I’m not saying I’m perfect all the time… far from it. I have had a couple of slipups lately and have probably been harder on myself than anyone else ever could. I get back to the WOE I live and love and know I will eat this way for the rest of my time here on earth.

As far as my personal life, things have been going well. I “levelled up” in Roller Derby from Level 3 to Level 4 and I am now a Level 5 in endurance, 27 laps in 5 mins., the highest level (minimum is 25 laps for Level 5 :) To say I’m happy would be an understatement! All this by eating a LCHF diet. No “healthy whole grains” for this gal, although I still do use the occasional low carb piece of toast or l/c wrap for a burger out. Very rare though.

As long as I can breathe I will condone this lifestyle for those who want to get healthy and not suffer while doing it and help them with any way I can. As they say “those who matter don’t mind and those who mind don’t matter”. I spoke to a new friend on the phone who is going to be my cabinmate for the next Low Carb Cruise and she and I discussed this very subject. Keep people in your life that enhance it and cut out the ones that make your life toxic and you will be the you that you were meant to be. Life is too short!

LCHF/Paleo <3,
Laurie :)

This entry was posted on September 6, 2011. 1 Comment

I must not tell lies!

Any of you who know me know I’m a HUGE fan of the Harry Potter series. How does this relate to low carb? You’ll see. In the fifth Harry Potter movie there was a character called Delores Umbridge who tried to make a liar out of Harry Potter for saying that Voldemort, the Dark Lord was back. She was trying to make him look nuts and altogether bad in front of the rest of the students and the rest of the wizarding community. She even made him carve “I must not tell lies” on his hand with a magical quill. Ouch! Poor Harry.

How does this relate to my low carb life? The longer I eat a low carb, high fat diet and the more research I do, the more books I read and the more I talk to other low carb friends, and the more I realize from my own results and experiences, I realize I cannot pretend that the lipid hypothesis is true. The lipid hypothesis basically says that dietary cholesterol causes high cholesterol and heart disease risk in people. It says dietary fat, and specifically that saturated fat is bad for you. Whole grains are healthy too! Not!…..

There is a section in our first aid course for Ski Patrol which espouses the Heart Association’s standard advice of a low fat diet to reduce your heart attack risk. I’ve been teaching First Aid for Ski Patrol the last few years, since before low carbing. The last couple of years while teaching I’ve just kind of clenched my teeth while teaching this section as I usually do the lesson on medical conditions. This list includes Strokes, Angina, Heart Attacks and Diabetes.

After living the low carb way of life for the last seven years I can no longer tell lies. I can not in good conscience regurgitate the low fat lie which encourages “healthy whole grains” and preaches a low fat diet. I am now in a predicament. I might make a “caveot” statement with a half joke about “this is the standard wisdom but I have different experience” statement or just get another First Aid Instructor teach medical conditions this year. I will need to talk to my IT about it (Instructor Trainer).

The more I live and love this way of life…. the better my health improves, the more I realize, like Harry, who knew he was telling the truth about Voldemort despite all the naysayers and non-believers around him and knew himself he had to hold to one fundamental truth… “I must not tell lies”!!

LCHF <3,
Laurie

This entry was posted on July 31, 2011. 6 Comments

Hypoglycemia: A symptom of bigger health problems

I am so thankful to the events and circumstances that brought me to to low carb eating. Looking back, one of my biggest health problems that was a big warning sign of poor glucose control was Hypoglycemia. In hindsight I had been suffering from this malady for years.

Hypoglycemia is typified of having a meal, a sharp blood sugar spike in the body then an even sharper blood sugar crash which leaves you irritable, shaky, headachy and faitgued. It is, for all intents and purposes, pre-Diabetes and thus part of a much bigger health issue. It is your body’s way of telling you your beta cells are burning out and your pancreas is having a hard time shooting out enough insulin to keep up with the carbs and sugar you are flooding it with. It is a warning sign more than just a health malady. If you don’t heed this sign it can progress to full fledged Diabetes. It is your system’s breakdown of the regulation of blood sugar control.

My “lightbulb moment”, realizing I had this condition occured when we had a pizza party on the bus on the way home from skiing the last trip of the season from Collingwood. Two friends and I split a pizza to ourselves. I felt great on the bus for about 10 minutes afterwards but by the time I got home I had the worst headache of my life from the blood sugar crash. I remember coming into the house, clutching my forehead, barely saying hello to my mother, dropping my ski gear on the floor and going up to my bed to sleep for the evening. I was in agony.

Hypoglycemia can be diagnosed with a Glucose Tolerance Test from your doctor, although many doctors, and my doctor at the time didn’t even recognize Hypoglycemia. I basically had to turn the trainwreck of my own health around and am grateful for the wisdom and guidance to do so.

Even now, after years of low carbing, I have to be mindful of eating every few hours because my blood sugar tends to run low. I listened with great interest on the low carb cruise a few months ago to Jackie Eberstein’s story of how she was diagnosed with Hypoglycemia by the late, great Dr. Atkins in his clinic while working with him. Her symptoms and history with the malady is practically identical to mine. She also turned her health around with a low carb approach to eating. It is amazing how many years people can suffer through Hypoglycemia without treatment. Even when they seek out a solution to their condition they are often steered wrong. When seeking a definition from Wilkepedia of Hypoglycemia their treatment was conventional and included drug treatment….

“Hypoglycemia is treated by restoring the blood glucose level to normal by the ingestion or administration of dextrose or carbohydrate foods. In more severe circumstances it is treated by injection or infusion of glucagon. Recurrent hypoglycemia may be prevented by reversing or removing the underlying cause, by increasing the frequency of meals, with medications like diazoxide, octreotide, or glucocorticoids, or by surgical removal of much of the pancreas.”

Frequent meals? Of what? More carbs and sugar no doubt which just exacerbates the condition and makes you Diabetic sooner. The “underlying cause” of the condition is insulin resistance. How about treating the condition naturally by eliminating sugar and insulin producing grains to control blood sugar spikes. What doesn’t cause blood sugar spikes? Fat and low carbohydrate foods. A Low Carb or Paleo diet is perfect for blood sugar control and getting off the blood sugar rollercoaster ride that is one ride you DON’T want to be on!

Those of us in the know in the low carb community realize that by eliminating blood sugar spikes from sugar and grains you can even out your blood sugars throughout the day and avoid the condition and fallout of Hypoglycemia altogether.

Low carb <3,
Laurie

This entry was posted on July 15, 2011. 2 Comments

I am so thankful to the events and circumstances that brought me to to low carb eating. Looking back, one of my biggest health problems that was a big warning sign of poor glucose control was Hypoglycemia. In hindsight I had been suffering from this malady for years.

Hypoglycemia is typified of having a meal, a sharp blood sugar spike in the body then an even sharper blood sugar crash which leaves you irritable, shaky, headachy and faitgued. It is, for all intents and purposes, pre-Diabetes and thus part of a much bigger health issue. It is your body’s way of telling you your beta cells are burning out and your pancreas is having a hard time shooting out enough insulin to keep up with the carbs and sugar you are flooding it with. It is a warning sign more than just a health malady. If you don’t heed this sign it can progress to full fledged Diabetes. It is your system’s breakdown of the regulation of blood sugar control.

My “lightbulb moment”, realizing I had this condition occured when we had a pizza party on the bus on the way home from skiing the last trip of the season from Collingwood. Two friends and I split a pizza to ourselves. I felt great on the bus for about 10 minutes afterwards but by the time I got home I had the worst headache of my life from the blood sugar crash. I remember coming into the house, clutching my forehead, barely saying hello to my mother, dropping my ski gear on the floor and going up to my bed to sleep for the evening. I was in agony.

Hypoglycemia can be diagnosed with a Glucose Tolerance Test from your doctor, although many doctors, and my doctor at the time didn’t even recognize Hypoglycemia. I basically had to turn the trainwreck of my own health around and am grateful for the wisdom and guidance to do so.

Even now, after years of low carbing, I have to be mindful of eating every few hours because my blood sugar tends to run low. I listened with great interest on the low carb cruise a few months ago to Jackie Eberstein’s story of how she was diagnosed with Hypoglycemia by the late, great Dr. Atkins in his clinic while working with him. Her symptoms and history with the malady is practically identical to mine. She also turned her health around with a low carb approach to eating. It is amazing how many years people can suffer through Hypoglycemia without treatment. Even when they seek out a solution to their condition they are often steered wrong. When seeking a definition from Wilkepedia of Hypoglycemia their treatment was conventional and included drug treatment….

“Hypoglycemia is treated by restoring the blood glucose level to normal by the ingestion or administration of dextrose or carbohydrate foods. In more severe circumstances it is treated by injection or infusion of glucagon. Recurrent hypoglycemia may be prevented by reversing or removing the underlying cause, by increasing the frequency of meals, with medications like diazoxide, octreotide, or glucocorticoids, or by surgical removal of much of the pancreas.”

Frequent meals? Of what? More carbs and sugar no doubt which just exacerbates the condition and makes you Diabetic sooner. The “underlying cause” of the condition is insulin resistance. How about treating the condition naturally by eliminating sugar and insulin producing grains to control blood sugar spikes. What doesn’t cause blood sugar spikes? Fat and low carbohydrate foods. A Low Carb or Paleo diet is perfect for blood sugar control and getting off the blood sugar rollercoaster ride that is one ride you DON’T want to be on!

Those of us in the know in the low carb community realize that by eliminating blood sugar spikes from sugar and grains you can even out your blood sugars throughout the day and avoid the condition and fallout of Hypoglycemia altogether.

Low carb <3,
Laurie