Groceries

     The other day I was at the grocery store and was buying up their kale.  I buy a lot of kale because I have green smoothies.  The cashier asked so what's with all the kale.  I told him we don't eat meat, and kale has a lot of protein in it.  He wasn't really into listening, so the conversation ended there. 

     You can tell a lot about people by what they have in their grocery carts.  Please don't think from this article that I'm judging people in any way, but you really can tell what kind of people they are by what they eat.  At Walmart when I bought all that kale, there was a family with a mom and dad and children, all very large and over weight.  The dad was in a motorized cart, telling the kids what to put into the cart, all of it processed foods.  I thought to myself how sad that you are relatively young (middle 40s) and not walking through the store.  His ankles were huge.  I can't imagine the life they lead.  Now okay, he may have just had surgery or had a sprain, but those foods certainly were not going to help his situation. 

     How do I grocery shop you ask?  I stay out of the middle sections of the store where all the processed foods reside.  I do venture into where the soy milk is so I can make yogurt.  Or I do happen into where canned and dry beans are and sauces for Mexican foods, but for the most part I stay in the fresh produce isle. 

     Have you noticed how foods are marketed?  They are eye catching.  They market to children, with fun logos ie Skittles "taste the rainbow" or all the cereal boxes with Disney characters on them.  So inviting to small eyes.  I remember Frosted Flakes with Tony the Tiger.  Okay everyone, I'm almost 60 years old, and to this day I still remember his name, and how he used to say "They're Great!"  It has stuck in my brain all these years.  He is still on the box!

     Have you gone into the produce isle?  I have to be honest.  When we were struggling more than once in our married lives we would go to the store, coupons in hand and get things cheap!  All the wrong stuff I might add.  The produce isle seemed too expensive.  I couldn't afford that stuff for my family!  Well, since going plant based I have discovered just how inexpensive it is, unless of course you live in Hawaii, but that is another subject.  LOL  If you aren't buying all the processed, dairy and meat items, then living a plant based diet is relatively inexpensive.  It does cost a bit to get set up with spices and appliances, but once that is done you are good to go.  On average we (meaning my husband and I) we spend about 300.00 per month on groceries.  That might be a bit high though as some weeks we don't go to the store.  It all depends on how the produce holds up.  Looking back now, I wish I had understood what a plant based diet could have done for my family.  We do have some health problems that I'm positive could have been avoided.

     I have noticed that we buy about the same things when we do shop and that is a lot of potatoes, salad makings, and Mexican items like tortillas, beans and such.  Rice is another item that we buy frequently, and I try to buy that in big quantities then I don't have to buy it very often.  I buy Dave's Killer bread, and freeze it.  I do buy lots of frozen vegges so that if I'm too lazy or in a hurry to eat fresh I always have it on hand.  I also purchase vinegars, mustard and of course nutritional yeast for flavoring dishes and getting the vitamin B12 that is a must for vegans. 

     All in all grocery shopping is a breeze these days.  I must say though it's been a bit of a learning curve as we ate the SAD (standard American diet) all those years. 

     If you need help with grocery shopping, and you live in the Boise area let me know if I can be of service. 

     Contact me at nrrook@gmail.com or 208-640-3890       

Aging, Happens To the Best of Us

     This year I will be 60 years old!  WHAT?  How did that happen?  I never thought in a million years that I would be 60!  I thought I would be young forever!  Well..... much to my chagrin it's happening.  I have to dye my hair about every 6 weeks, I have really come to enjoy relaxing more, and I am having a much harder time losing weight.  I love sweets, and they go straight to my hips.  I have also noticed that I'm starting to look like my mother when she was old!  LOL  Well at least that's what I see in the mirror.  Others have told me that I don't look as old as 60.  How old are you supposed to look at 60? 

     Aging is a natural part of life.  It's inevitable.  We can't live on what ifs.  What if I were 30 again I would do it so differently, what if I were in high school again, I would have studied harder.  This kind of attitude gets us nowhere.  We have to take life by the horns and dig in to where we are now and if we need to make changes, then do it!

     I have noticed one thing, and that is by eating a plant based diet I have more energy.  I work a 12 hour shift 3 days a week at work and by the time I get home I'm a bit tired, but I still have energy to do things, although I know how important sleep is, so I try to relax and get the rest that I need for the next 12 hour shift.  I wonder how long I will be able to keep up this pace.

     I work in a rehab hospital, and we have 38 patients that have a myriad of health conditions and most of our patients are elderly.  We do have a sprinkling of young every now and again, but mostly elderly.  Most of our patients have inflammatory issues such as arthritis, chest pain, abdominal pains, rashes or fatigue.  All causes of inflammation.  What causes inflammation?  Animal products.  Here is a video my doctor Greger.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dj_MaHa2NDY

     I'm positive because I don't get sick more often, and my my knees aren't worse is because I eat a plant based diet.  I keep my inflammation to a minimum by eating this way.  Now I'm not by any means perfect.  I do fall off the wagon from time to time, not with animal products, but sweets are my nemesis.  I have noticed that my body hurts more when I do eat sweets.  Working on ditching the sugar. 

     How do we stay "young"?  We can't, but we can do things that help us age more gracefully.
I love this video by Dr. Ellsworth Wareham.  He didn't retire from being a surgeon until he was 95!!!   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FX58PyQwrcI&t=673s  Lots of great advice from a man who has been there done that.  Knowledge is power, and the more we learn about how to care for our bodies the better off we will be.  It's my hope that I will see my grand children get married.  I was married as some would considered late.  (27).  So having my first 2 grands didn't come until recently, I have a ways to go until I see them married.  At any rate, my goal is to take care of myself so that I will age gracefully, and see wonderful things to come in my children's lives and grand children's lives.