Saturday, January 15, 2011

Scaring myself straight!

According to the World Health Organization, "Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity."
That's good news. Then perhaps I won't give up on all of the other aspects, just to exercise or eat better.
Speaking of eating better - I have decided to scare myself straight. I am literally exposing myself to movies, videos, research, etc. about the impurity of our food and food source, as well as the whole cruelty aspect. I have lined up a Netflix educational day with the following movies:
- Food, Inc. (Drawing on Eric Schlosser's Fast Food Nation and Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma, director Robert Kenner's Oscar-nominated documentary explores the food industry's detrimental effects on our health and environment. Kenner spotlights the men and women who are working to reform an industry rife with monopolies, questionable interpretations of laws and subsidies, political ties and rising rates of E. coli outbreaks)

- Food Matters (With a staggering number of Americans suffering from obesity and other food-related maladies, this film takes a timely and hard-hitting look at how the food we eat is helping or hurting our health, and what we can do to live (and eat) better. Nutritionists, naturopaths, scientists, doctors, medical journalists and more weigh in on everything from using food as medicine to the value of organic food and the safety of the food we consume.)

- The Future of Food (Before compiling your next grocery list, you might want to watch filmmaker Deborah Koons Garcia's eye-opening documentary, which sheds light on a shadowy relationship between agriculture, big business and government. By examining the effects of biotechnology on the nation's smallest farmers, the film reveals the unappetizing truth about genetically modified foods: You could unknowingly be serving them for dinner.)

- Tapped (The high cost -- to both the environment and our health -- of bottled water is the subject of this documentary that enlists activists, environmentalists, community leaders and others to expose the dark side of the bottled water industry. Americans may rethink their obsession with bottled H20 when they learn of the unregulated industry's willingness to ignore environmental and health concerns, and the problems that arise as a result.)

Riveting, n'est pas? ;-)
It's how I work.
If you have been following this blog (or perhaps you are a new visitor) - I have been on a quest to get my health back. Mental, physical, social - everything. As far as the food consumption part - I have elevated cholesterol and high blood pressure. I am on medication for the BP and have been since I was maybe 24. That's the year I started gaining weight. (See the connection?) Also, I have PCOS. That's Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Now some of you might be asking, "What does her ovaries have to do with this?" Oh dear... where do I begin? That's a good question you might want to ask yourself. HORMONES baby, hormones. Let's add to my list - Insulin resistant. (A side effect of the PCOS.) Not diabetes.. but a risk factor for.
I am one big bag of risk factors.
Two Novembers ago I visited a cardiologist. No offense to the Internal Med docs, but I wanted a specialist. We narrowed down some of my contributing factors for resistant HBP (which btw, I have.) The main item I took away (besides a CPAP machince) was the validation that the Mediterranean way of eating is the best way for cardiovascular (and really ALL) health. Excellent.
I have spent the past year tinkering with the recipes. I am blessed in that case to be married to the egyptian. He is from Alexandria, Egypt and yes - he is Mediterranean. (Amoung other things.. LOL.) So, he has been introducing me to new ways to cook. Now we stock pile cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, orzo, couscous, flat bread, tahini, chickpeas, and fava beans.
Then I tried to incorporate the movement. Tried the personal trainer. (HARD.) That's like skipping to an accelerated learning class. I wanted to have fun, not feel like a loser. So - dance/dance/dance. Back in the day I was a very serious dancer. It was my M.O. So - I needed something like dance, but several times a week. I found group exercise at the Y with Zumba and Body Jam. Fun, aerobic.. etc.
THEN - the stress came barreling in - mainly home stress. What we all seem to forget, it may not be anything we are doing to bring the stresss.. however, if you husband is going through some things, it will effect you.
So I decided to find my Zen moments, to TRUST God in his BIG PLAN, and hopefully achieve balance.
Now that I know WHAT to eat and HOW to exercise and Where to find peace - I need to figure out the RIGHT places to get the food and the BEST exercise to achieve my goals and the PERFECT resource for balance.
That's the next adventure. Hence, the movies.
Want to join me on this journey?


becca said...

i am with you there working hard to stay healthy

Robin said...

Hi! Stopping by from LBS, my family is in Bham, and I grew up in Jasper! Also working on getting healthy this year!

Come see me!

Leanne said...

You know it, sister! I'm there with you ... all the way! Wooo Hooo! (LOVE this one).


SpookyJulz said...

Hi Nicole,
I'm following you from the LBS tea party,
Love this post! Great information. I love Mediterranean food. This could be a new way for me to get healthy too!!
Julz@ and

Jennifer Bruno said...

Nicole: Thanks so much for the really sweet comments about my blog on the LBS Tea Party today! I really appreciate them! Also, I am your newest follower, and I think it was great timing to find your blog and this post. I too, have PCOS and have been struggling to get pregnant. When I'm eating right and exercising (the things I hate most in life) my PCOS naturally regulates itself (sorta). Anyway, I was happy to see this post. And, happy to be a new follower! :-)

High Heeled Life said...

Hi there visiting from Lady Blogger Social Tea Party .. You have a great blog! and your post speaks to what I am going through .. finding complete health... I'm also your newest follower...stay strong and can't wait to keep reading..xo HHL

Mrs. Drama Queen said...

Add Earthlings to that list and I guarantee it'll work.

Hoosier Chick said...

Read Fast Food Nation. I stopped eating fast food for 6 months after I read that book.

Just don't scare yourself from all food. Locally grown stuff is awesome. And being from Indiana, I'd say watch out for the "Amish" stands at the farmers market. Not all Amish are alike.

Doris said...

I am with you all the way, girl. I was at the dentist a few weeks ago, and my BP was SO high, they almost refused to do my cleaning and wanted to send me straight to the emergency room. I talked them out of it, and into just the cleaning thank you very much. lol. But it was a definite wake up call. I am now keeping a diary of food intake/calories AND working out a minimum of 3 days a week (well, last week I didn't quite get there). ANYWAY, we can do this...we can!! And we will!

Miel Abeille said...

I'm getting scared straight, too!

No wonder we bumped into each other on the 'net -- we're both on the path to balanced living. :)


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