How to Lose Weight with a Real Food Lifestyle

The baby fat from this last pregnancy (#8) has been the hardest to lose! I do understand why. Many different organs and body systems have to be working correctly in order for the body to properly metabolize stored fat (on its own as designed, without extra metabolism boosters and dietary fads). The body naturally was created to desire to maintain a comfortable body weight – one just right for your body type. Not too skinny, not too heavy, just right. In order to obtain this, certain body systems have to be detoxed and working efficiently, or no matter the diet or exercise has little impact, so it seems.  Here’s the check list of important organs/systems to have in order for optimal weight loss:

  • Thyroid/Hypothalamus/Pituitary
  • Pancreas
  • Liver/Gallbladder
  • Colon
  • Lymphatic
  1. DO A MAJOR DETOX: A real simple way to make sure everything is working right would be doing an overall detox/cleansing program. Look for quality companies, no fillers, just herbs and foods. I like Garden of Life products, Nature’s Sunshine, Dr. Christopher or Dr. Schultze and the like. Check out the notes from our detox workshop and get on a good program.
  2. Check for specific problem areas:
  • Do you have a low thyroid? If so, get some sea vegetables to support it (Pure Herbs TW, for example).
  • Do you have low or high blood sugar issues? Get lots of protein, stay away from all sugar sources, and get a good pancreatic support (Nature’s Sunshine Pro-Pancreas, for example). 
  • Do you have Leaky Gut? Get on the GAPS diet.
  • Do you have colitis or other colon issues? Do similar GAPS diet, but also take a colon support (Dr. Christopher, or Chinese Medicinal Herbal Combinations – see a local acupuncturist).
  • Congested Liver or Reoccurring Gallstones? Get a good liver support (Nature’s Sunshine has several, like this one. I am sure there are many others. Or Gallbladder Formula). Getting that liver and gallbladder cleaned out will make a huge impact. Drinking 5-10 drops of lemon essential oil by Young Living or other reputable sources in water each day will also support and cleanse.
  • Over-worked lymphatic? Do some skin brushing, rebounding, lemongrass essential oil on the bottom of the feet twice a day, drinking green drinks (greens blended in the blender with water – up to a quart a day). Barley grass and other grass powders are also very helpful.

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3. Stick with your Real Foods Lifestyle with these alterations:

  • Drink/eat only fermented fresh dairy – drinking raw milk has sugars we are trying to avoid at this time (think yogurt, kefir, soured cream)
  • Eat only sourdough or sprouted bread minimally (1-2 slices a day).
  • Eat 1 meal with properly prepared grains (like brown rice, soaked barley, or others).
  • Avoid starchy vegetables that would add to the sugar count (like potatoes).
  • NO refined Sugar at all – no sucanat, nada. Healthy sugar is fine when you get to your desired weight. For now, use Stevia – NuNaturals, without any flavorings or raw honey (if you don’t have high blood sugar issues).
  • Eat all the healthy fats, non-starchy vegetables, properly prepared nuts/seeds, fermented, organic, preferably raw and pastured dairy and pastured, organic meats and eggs that you would like!

4. Moderate exercise: Try to get in some stretching, walking, playing with your kids, going on nature walks, doing some weight lifting with your older kids… you get the picture. Stay active. Use your rebounder for 5-10 minutes a day. It’s not about working out for hours.This is a life-style, not a diet. So, the exercise should be something you can do in real life, with all the kids, and in budget and within time restraints.

5. Take some Moringa leaf or other superfood multi-vitamin to be sure you’re filling in all the gaps, especially if you have one or more compromised systems you’re working on strengthening.

6. Keep eating your fermented veggies – these will act not only as an amazing food enzyme, but a probiotic and powerhouse of nutrients. Shoot for 1-2 Tablespoons each meal.

7. Be prayerful! Keep a thankful journal and stay connected to the Ultimate Healer for wisdom and guidance.

That’s it! Losing weight shouldn’t be so difficult. Clean up and avoid simple sugars. If you’re already on a Real Foods diet, this should be an easy move for you. If you’re still transitioning over to a Real Foods diet, keep at it! Learn all you can. Make those baby steps, or go major! Whatever is going to work for you.

**If you are nursing or pregnant, you cannot use the detox herbs. If you’re nursing or pregnant and want to clean up minimally, I recommend Detox + from Bulk Herb Store – something with just activated charcoal or bentonite clay in it. These will absorb toxins without circulating them to the baby. Other than that, do NOT CUT CALORIES. You can do the above Real Foods diet with the alterations, but never go hungry. Remember you have a little one counting on you! Eat extra helpings of soup, salad, yogurt, lots of healthy fats, etc.

God be with you as you go on your journey to complete health! Remember that weight loss is the added benefit of a healthy lifestyle and optimally functioning organs. Watch for healthy, nourishing sugar free dessert recipes. I started on this a week ago, so I will be posting recipes, like chocolate bars 😉

DIY Dried lemon peels and ginger

I bought a bunch of fresh ginger and organic lemons so that I could make a yummy honey lemon ginger tincture of sorts. However, I learned that the oil on the lemon peel was bothering my nursing babe, so I peeled them off. While I was chopping up ginger, I thought how nice it would be to have some dried, chopped ginger along with the lemon peels for teas.

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What to do:

Chop a couple pounds of fresh, organic ginger into small pieces. Place in a dehydrator for about 24-48 hours on about 120. Using the peels from 4-6 organic lemons, cut into small strips, or smaller pieces. Place these on another rack of the dehydrator.

The smell from the dehydrator is wonderfully refreshing!

With 1 full root of ginger and 4 sliced lemons, I put them in a quart jar with 2 cups of raw honey. I smashed the lemon slices in the jar until it seemed most the juice was out. Putting a lid on the concoction, I left it in the fridge. Now when I am making some tea, I can scoop out some of the delicious lemon, spicy ginger honey into my cup. Or just eat it straight out of the jar!

Lemon, honey and ginger are excellent immune stimulators with anti-microbial properties. Here’s to a healthy finish for the winter!

Restoring Digestive Health Workshop Notes

Last night we had our Juice Fast information and Restoring Digestive Health workshop. Here is the link to the presentation slides if anyone needed them. You will probably need to open them as a google document. At the end of the slides is the resources page. Each of the supplements listed are linked, so you can click on them to see more information.

Juice Fast Information:

We will be doing a juice fast from March 20th-30th. Those interested in healing their digestive systems and thus the entire body are welcome to join! We will be juicing (or using a Blendtec/Vitamix) only fruits, vegetables, and herbs. Anytime there is hunger, JUICE! No need to be hungry on this fast; you can juice as much as you’d like. The ratio of vegetables to fruits should be about 3:1 as a general rule. (For more information on a juice fast, check out the documentary Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead on Netflix or http://www.hacres.com/ has some good recipes and ideas – please note I DO NOT support a lifestyle of raw food or veganism, but I do believe it is helpful while cleansing and detoxing as we will be doing.)

We will also be taking a probiotc 3 times a day (morning, noon and night). Since probiotics are so expensive, we decided to do a bulk buy and get the mother culture from this company, from which we will ferment our own probiotics (and save a ton of money). We will also be taking fermented cod liver oil/butter oil from Green Pastures – the only company whose CLO I trust, because they use the traditional methods of fermenting the oil instead of heating. Those not in possession of the CLO will use flax oil (Barlean’s is a good brand).

Here are the directions to making the probiotic we talked about (or you can view them from the original website here):

Fermenting SCD’s Mother Culture Food Grade Probiotic

makes about 1 gallon

Ingredients:

  • 1 gallon filtered water minus 1 1/2 cups
  • a little less than 3/4 cup unsulphered molasses
  • a little less than 3/4 cup probiotic mother culture (NOTE: the recipe calls for 3/4 cup culture to 20 cups water; since a gallon is 16 cups, that’s why we use just a little less than 3/4 cup.)

Tools Needed:

  • Large stock pot
  • candy thermometer
  • wooden spoon
  • heating pad or ceramic crock pot whose lowest temperature will go down to 100 degrees
  • thick towel
  • glass gallon jar or 2 half gallon jars
  • Test strips

Method:

  1. Pour water and molasses into the pot.
  2. Warm the water and mix molasses until thoroughly infused.
  3. Heat water to between 95-110 degrees.
  4. Pour mixture into your clean glass gallon jar.
  5. Add mother culture and stir.
  6. Either put the glass jar on the heating pad or in a crockpot, on the lowest setting, checking through out the day that the temperature does not go over 110 or below 95.
  7. If putting in the crockpot, place jar on a thick towel in the crockpot and fill the crockpot with warm water (between 95 and 110 degree F).
  8. If using the heating pad, simply cover the jar and keep an eye on the temperature.
  9. After covering the jar (s), keep in a darker place on the counter where it can ferment undisturbed for about 5 days.
  10. On the 5th day, use a tablespoon to scoop out a sampling of the probiotic and test its ph with the test strips.
  11. When the reading of the test strips is under 3.7, your probiotic is ready. If it is still around 3.8, give it another 12-24 hours and check again.
  12. Store your fermented probiotic in clean quart jars. Keep in a cool dark place, or in the back of the fridge.

I am unsure as to how long this “lasts”. It is a fermented food, so technically it should be good for many months; but I would say for best effectiveness to try to use it up within a couple months.

Serving size for this probiotic: Healing mode serving – 1 Tablespoon 3 times a day; Adult regular – 1-2 Tablespoons daily; Children – 1 Tablespoon a day.

I will be editing the video we made and hopefully get that posted here as well. In the next few days, I will also map out the dietary guidelines we will be following after the fast to continue our healing and restoration. Stay tuned!

 

New to a Real Foods Diet?

Here are some good places to start:

Real Food on a Real Budget: How to Eat Healthy For Less

Keeper of the Home’s Starter Page

Weston A Price’s Beginner Videos

Nutritional Eating: What’s Most Important?

Simple Steps Towards Eating Healthy

Natural Living 101

Nutritional Eating on a Budget

GNOWFGLINS – New?

Hopefully these resources will get you started in the right direction. Making the choice to  begin a healthier lifestyle for you and your family is a difficult decision in today’s unhealthy world. But you can do it! Just take the first step. Make as many changes as you and your family can handle at a time. This isn’t a sprint race – it’s a marathon, intended to last a life time; hopefully a long and healthy one.  God bless you with wisdom, grace, and strength as you change lives, and the futures of your children by giving them the gift of health – mind, body and soul.

Nourishing Grain Free Minestrone

It must be in my genes to just love Minestrone. Back in the day when I ate out just about anywhere, I enjoyed the soup and salad at the Olive Garden. I would always gets Minestrone and the Italian salad. Looking at the ingredients in those dishes from restaurants today, it doesn’t surprise me that I have had so many issues regaining my health.

Today I try to choose wisely if we have to eat out. I pack snacks for the children and myself to avoid stopping anywhere and compromising our health for the sake of convenience. Not only is it more cost effective to bring my own food where ever we may be, but it is also way more nutritious than anything we could get when we’re out. So, it’s a win win. It only takes a bit of preparation and forethought, but not much. Quick grabs for us are fruits, dried fruits, nuts, grain free granola cookies or mixes, raw milk, raw cheese slices, and veggies if they’re sliced and ready to go. Those are just a few ideas. I have come across so many in the real food blog world as well.

Right, well, back to soup…

Nourishing Grain Free Minestrone

serves about 12 people or more

Ingredients

  • 1/2 gallon homemade chicken stock
  • 1 quart canned tomatoes (NOT from aluminum cans, read why)
  • 3-4 cups cooked beans (any mix will do, I used navy and adzuki)
  • 2 celery, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 1 bunch greens (I use swiss chard, but any green will do)
  • 3/4 zucchini, chopped
  • 1 cup quinoa, soak in lemon water for about 15 minutes before using, then rinse well
  • 1-2 cups peas (depending on how much you like them), frozen or fresh
  • 1-2 cups green beans, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons of each: fresh basil, fresh parsley

Method

  1. In a large stock pot, add oil and saute celery, onion, and carrots.
  2. Add everything else, except the greens. Let come to a boil and then lower to light simmer.
  3. Let simmer on low for about 30-45 minutes.
  4. About 10-15 minutes before you’re ready to serve, add the greens. If you don’t have time to add them separate, that’s fine. Just add them with everything else.
  5. Serve topped with parmesan or romano cheese.

Finish off the meal with a fresh green salad, some fermented beverage of choice, and perhaps even some sourdough bread or sprouted grain crackers. For more great, nourishing meal ideas, check out The Healthy Home Economist on her Monday Mania.