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Big Pot of Soup (Stew?)

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Thursday I spent six hours up in New Port Richey with the overflow doctor, having one skin cancer off my scalp. When I was done, the nurse told me they would rather I didn't shave my head, so I think I'll just have two weeks worth of stubble when I go back for the next one.

I also made a pot of soup today, but maybe it's really a pot of vegetable stew. I have about three gallons of very thick (but not burned) soup. I don't like runny soup, so to avoid the need to throw crackers in it to stiffen it up, I make it thick from the beginning. I have about three gallons of stuff made from the following ingredients:

two pounds of split green peas, one cup of pearled barley, one bunch of celery (chopped up), three onions and two turnips (all I had left of either, peeled and diced), six big cloves of garlic (all that I had on hand) a pound of mushrooms, two 16 oz. cans of diced tomatoes, two pounds of carrots (pealed and sliced), a one pound smoked turkey drumstick, two bay leaves, a couple of good shakes from my big jar of crushed red peppers, and a good dash of dried basil leaves, and enough water to just see it through the stuff in the pot before it's cooked.

I put the pot on a two burner hot plate l had left over from our RV days, when the BW didn't want the smell in the trailer (I would cook outside under the awning), and checked it after an hour and a half. It finally took nearly three hours to get the turkey leg done enough to pull the skin off and pull the bones out of the meat. I weighed the meat, and I got 4.74 oz of meat from a 13 oz drumstick, so I don't think it's too far away from a vegetarian soup, because the pot is really heavy. It's the biggest one I have, and I should have enough soup to last me for a couple of weeks because the BW is allergic to tomatoes, mushrooms, and red pepper, and she is working on an Atkins diet anyhow. We are buying two kinds of groceries, and she is eating steak while I eat soup and salad. Fortunately, I learned to cook a little a long time ago, when I first wanted to lose weight.

I tested about a half cup of the stuff, and with just a tiny bit of salt it's delicious.

PS - I forgot the two pounds of sweet potato that I peeled and diced.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

S3XYDIVASMOM 8/28/2011 5:21PM

    I think it is a good idea to use meat as a flavoring rather than a main ingredient. I'm guessing that with a smoked drumstick, the flavor will be much enriched due to its presence.

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THINRONNA 8/28/2011 4:59AM

    The soup sounds good. I make thick stew like soups too mostly...I think meat just for flavor and mostly vegetables is the way to go. Good job!

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DC2837998 8/27/2011 9:27PM


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MS.ELENI 8/27/2011 7:29PM

    I am surprised they didn't want you to shave your head. I would have thought it would have been helpful.
That sounds like quite a soup. That wasn't much meat so it was mostly veggies. I am sure glad Bill eats whatever i fix.Makes it a lot easier.

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That's Why

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A few years ago I had small plaques in both carotid arteries. Two or three years later I had no plaques in either artery. At that time I was riding my Aerdyne at more than 400 calories per hour for an hour at least five times per week, and not skipping two days in a row. That was the prescription in one of the newer books on heart disease reversal from a Norwegian study. I had three or four recent books by cardiologists, and took what I could from them. I was also following the Pritikin program as fairly closely.

Then I had the heart bypass operations (which I still think was a mistake) and got off of the glucosamine supplements, and my left knee started bothering me this time. I eventually took up walking (three doctors told me not to run) and time passed. I had one perfect nuclear stress test, a second one a couple of years later that showed an area of the heart that was not fully oxygenated, which caused a catherization. That showed that both bypasses were perfectly clear.

Immediately after that catherization, my blood pressure went up into the stroke zone Ė 198/102 to 195/98. It turned out that the artery for my kidney was 90 per cent blocked, and my cardiologist put a 7 mm stent in and blew it up to 7.5 mm (0.3 inches). That brought the blood pressure back down to normal or less.

Time passed, and I started having a beer once in a while, eating low fat frozen yogurt, buying fat free yogurt for snacks at home, and eating out a couple of times a month. Then seven or eight times a month.

Then I had another nuclear stress test last year, and the blood starved area was larger than it was in the last test.

Then (recently) my internist said it had been a long time, get another angiogram. The end result of that was that my left carotid artery turned out to be totally blocked, and the small plaque is back in the right carotid artery. Also, my blood pressure seems to be creeping up again.

My conclusion is that the beer and exceptions need to stop. Not only that, but the latest book (with 45 pages of references) says that this program cuts many cancer risks, as well as artery risk. My take on the history is that I have been too slack for too long, and Iím now walking with the dogs and planning to sneak up to a jog. I do eat one ounce of raw nuts a day, and a tablespoon of ground flaxseed with my oatmeal, but other than that I focus on fruit, vegetables, and beans with not much lean meat or grain. The preference is for no meat and take a B12 supplement. Iím just trying to get some more years out of the body I have left. This wonít help with breast cancer or prostate cancer because theyíre most affected by the diet in puberty, but just because you smoked for 30 years doesnít mean that you donít get a benefit if you quit now.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KNIT1PURL2LOSE3 9/4/2011 7:05PM

    You really take your health seriously. You read and research and find out what YOU can do to improve the situation and that wins you a GOLD MEDAL my friend!!!! GO YOU!!!! You are emoticon !

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TUDI4480 8/26/2011 1:26AM

    Great plan! You are just the guy who can DO This!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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S3XYDIVASMOM 8/24/2011 9:37PM

    Now, I understand. This time it isn't about the weight. I believe you have the discipline to follow through with this plan.

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MS.ELENI 8/23/2011 11:11PM

    Sounds like you got a good plan . emoticon

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New Book - New (Old) Diet

Monday, August 22, 2011

A couple of weeks ago, the local PBS station was having fund raising pitches, so the BW wanted to watch Netflix instead of her favorite mystery or Masterpiece Mystery. I saw another program that came on after the regular show, at 11 PM. It lasted for two hours, so I set the recorder to get it and left the converter turned on. Later I got around to editing out the pleas for money, and had a one hour show left. This past Monday I finally got around to watching the show while the BW did something else, and was interested, so Monday night I searched and found Eat to Live, by Joel Fuhrman, M.D. This revised edition was copyrighted in January, 2011, but the original, hard-bound edition was copyrighted in 2003.

There was a book by Nathan Pritikin copyrighted in 1974 that provided a program that was very similar, but allowed four ounces of lean meat a day, another a few years later that suggested exactly the same things as Pritikin, another copyrighted in 1990 by Dean Ornish which added meditation or relaxation to vegan and exercise, and one by Roy L Walford, copyrighted in 1994, which was based on his experiences in the Biosphere II program. He allowed four ounces of flesh a week, and restricted calories to no more than about 1800 pre day for a man. His diet was intended to extend the maximum life span of humans, not just avoid degenerative diseases.

Dr. Fuhrman prefers a vegan diet, but will concede about 10 per cent of your calories to less nutritious foods. He defines nutrition and then focuses on good health by choosing the food by N/C, or nutrition divided by calories. Then he ranks the foods, and suggests a health promoting eating style that does not require much, or any, calorie counting. None of the four books mentioned requires calorie counting Ė just food choices.

The Fuhrman book came Saturday afternoon, and I read the first 200 pages Saturday, and finished the book after I cut the grass yesterday. The last time I ate like that, my total cholesterol got down to 102, and my internist wanted it higher, so I started eating a lot of nuts and avocados. I suspect that it will go down again, but thatís what Iím going to do this time.

I made an appointment to see him last Monday, and did see him today. His bottom line was that the only thing I could do more was to take aspirin, which I had stopped because of the bleeding on my arms, so I told him that I would start taking it again after Iím done with the Mohs surgery.

Meanwhile, Iím tracking down the Fuhrman path, and weíll see what happens. Something is going to kill me eventually, but I want to put it off as long as possible.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TUDI4480 8/26/2011 1:21AM

    FYI: I had not been taking aspirin for awhile. But, my doctor suggested I add one Baby aspirin (82 mg) to my afternoon Vitamin D and Blood Pressure meds. Anyway, I've been doing that for a few months now and no problems. However, I don't know how much aspirin your doc is recommending you take once you're done with your Moh's surgery.

Thanks for visiting my blog. I really enjoy the walks with the dogs along the Pacific. BTW, please take good care. I don't know how directly Hurricane Irene is supposed to come to your neck of the woods in Florida. Please stay safe, it looks like it will be a HUGE storm.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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S3XYDIVASMOM 8/22/2011 10:18PM

    I, too, am curious why you are doing this. Your weight appears to be stable so I wouldn't think weight loss would be your goal. Is it just for some health benefit?

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    Curious, what is the impetus for trying this diet?

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MS.ELENI 8/22/2011 7:28PM

    Lots of luck trying the new program. emoticon emoticon

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Bad Day at Black Rock

Thursday, August 18, 2011

I had been having a good week or so - would have been out of leeway on the low side if I were going to the TOPS meetings - but today has been an out of control eating day. It started out fine, with just oatmeal and a plumb for breakfast, but then I ate some more even though I wasn't hungry. By the time I was done I was up to 486 calories, and the day went down hill after that. I'll see what the scale says tomorrow.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TUDI4480 8/21/2011 1:39PM

    One day at a time...I hope you're doing well and all is going just as you want it to. As always, take good care of you!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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THINRONNA 8/19/2011 2:18PM

    Ugh! I hate when that happens! Just start again tomorrow. One day does not make us or break us! emoticon

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KNIT1PURL2LOSE3 8/19/2011 2:05PM

    Fall 7 times, get up 8. Some days, the body just needs a feeding frenzy. Get right back on the horse and it will all work out. Take care of yourself!

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S3XYDIVASMOM 8/19/2011 11:19AM

    It seems like how the day starts is how it finishes. Wonder why we can't just stop, reset in the middle of the day.

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MRDPOLING 8/19/2011 6:55AM

    Must have been something in the water 'cause I had the same issues yesterday. wasn't hungry but couldn't stop eating.

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MS.ELENI 8/18/2011 7:41PM

    So you had a bad day. It happens.You will be back on track tomorrow. emoticon

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Frozen Strawberry Dessert

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Today the BW wondered if we had any ice cream left in the freezer, and we didn't. To satisfy her I took a sorbet recipe and changed it for quick response. The original recipe is for three cups of mixed berries, two cups of water, and 1 1/2 cups of sugar, cooking the syrup first, then mixing in the berries with an immersion blender, cooling the recipe for two or three hours in the refrigerator, then freezing it. I used a pound of frozen strawberries, two cups of skim milk, and 1 1/2 cups of Splenda, which did dissolve in the cold milk. I chopped the berries up a little, before running the blender and mixing them with the milk. Then I pulled the bowl out of the freezer, started the ice cream maker, and poured the mixture in. In 12 minutes we had soft sorbet, and I dipped out two bows (about a cup for each of us) and scooped the rest (about a quart) into a plastic container that I put in the freezer for later.

The result was magnificent. If I had used water it would have been about 15 calories per cup, but the milk added another 30 calories per cup. Thus the result is about 22 calories per "serving" or 45 calories per cup. And it tastes GREAT! I don't know what to call it, but it's good stuff.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KNIT1PURL2LOSE3 8/19/2011 2:07PM

    that sounds really yummy!! Can it be made without an ice cream maker???

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THINRONNA 8/18/2011 4:57PM

    Sounds really good!

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MS.ELENI 8/17/2011 8:38PM

    It does sound good.

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    This sounds delicious. I LOVE strawberries, but I'm not that crazy about ice cream. I was never a milk drinker. I bought some strawberry sorbet and have been eating 1/2 cup in the evening (it's just a little container, only 3 1/2 servings in the whole thing), buy it's made with REAL sugar, so comes in at 120 calories for that 1/2 cup. Not bad, since I'm on maintenance but I told hubby last night if I could find sorbet made with Splenda, it would cut the calories way back I bet. I'll have to keep looking. Your homemade stuff sounds good but I think I'd make it without the milk, since I'm not a fan.

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