Thursday, February 26, 2015

Plateaus and ignorance

Hello, world!

Plateaus....ugh. We've all had them but they're super frustrating. I've slept pretty poorly for the past month until this week, the weather has been so bitterly cold that it's been hard to talk myself into the gym as often as I like to go and the combo of the two gave me a flare up for a few weeks. I only lost eight pounds in the past month bringing my total weight loss to 124 pounds. Which is still amazing, I know! I've finally started sleeping well again this week, made it to class on Monday night on top of getting in another workout plus using the elliptical at work. It truly makes all the difference in the world. Hopefully, the flare is done and I can start pushing it again...oh, and thanks Living Social for offering a 1month unlimited boot camp class voucher for a great price! I loved the ones that I did last year before I left DC and I'm in a much better place now mentally to do them, not to mention weigh less than I did then and I know I'm stronger and more flexible!

In other news, the dating scene never ceases to amaze me. A few weeks ago I met a guy and we hit it off really well and had tons of things in common. He was impressed by my blog and by the things I've done to better my life. We went out and a few days later (and after expressing a lot of interest to see me again) he opts to tell me via text that he had never dated anyone who weighed more than he did. But in an attempt to make himself not look like such a jerk he says "I love all of the things about you that matter most to God. And you're so pretty and have a gorgeous smile." I. Was. FLOORED. Who says that to another adult? Granted, he was smaller than any other guy I've ever dated, but still. He said it's a rule of his to not be with someone who weighs more than ten pounds above his weight and it concerned him. I let him have it, probably more than I should have but I found it ridiculous.

I have worked my ass off, literally to be where I am today. I have a long way to go before I get to my goal, but I'm more than halfway through it and the first half was the hardest part. It was a reprisal to a conversation I'd had before with someone else. There is no part of me that wants to be with anyone who doesn't accept me for exactly who I am today. There is no part of me that wants to have anything to do with someone who wants me to change or expects certain things from me in terms of my weight and my health.

I made the decision two years ago to better my life and I have fought tooth and nail for it. I am physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually healthier than I've ever been and I know where I'm going. Shouldn't that be enough? It absolutely is enough for me. I have no problem sharing my goals and my struggles with someone, case and point this blog. Don't ever let anyone make you feel like you aren't enough exactly as you are TODAY. Nobody has the promise of tomorrow and you can't predict what life will throw at you.

You choose the direction that you take your life. You choose to change your story. You choose to be better. You choose those things for yourself, not for someone else.


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Liver cleansing...

Hello world!

I've been a little bit MIA the past couple of weeks. I've wanted to do this post for a week now but have just been busy. I'm gearing up to do a big liver cleanse so this is fitting. As you all know, I'm a huge proponent of juicing, drinking hot lemon water and anything else that can truly detox your system after all of the years of medications.

Last month I had posted about the benefits of drinking hot water with lemon (and honey sometimes) and my dad asked a few questions about it but said nothing else after that. Last week he had this to report: " I got results yesterday on blood work done last week. For several weeks prior, I have been drinking (twice daily) a cup of HOT water with 2 tbls of lemon juice, 1 tbls apple cider vinegar, 1 tbls raw honey, and a dash of cinnamon. My good cholesterol was UP, my bad cholesterol was DOWN, triglycerides were DOWN, sugar was DOWN, liver function was BETTER!!!" 

For my dad, that's huge. When I was eight, he had a massive heart attack, quadruple bypasses and has had multiple heart attacks since. In the past couple of years since I started my journey, he has lost quite a bit of weight, too. I'm proud of him for trying to help his own cause. It's not always easy but any improvement to your health is a good thing. 

So let's talk about the liver and why it's so important. The liver is the largest organ inside the body and it filters over 32oz. of blood per minute. The liver has more than 200 functions and plays a role in nearly all body functions such as digestion and conversion of nutrients, eliminating waste, producing bile for fat digestion, energy and nutrient storage, controlling cholesterol levels, monitoring natural hormonal balance, producing immune factors to fight infections, detoxifies the blood by filtering toxins such as alcohol, medications, pesticides, environmental chemicals, dead cells, cigarette smoke, air pollutants and natural waste from digestion and respiration. So is it a coincidence that by improving his liver function, his cholesterol has improved? No, not at all.

Below is an excerpt from Cherie Calbom's website, I have a few of her books and have done several cleanses that she talks about.

"The liver is a prime place for the body to store toxins that can’t be excreted. Highly toxic chemicals can pass through the liver, including residues from pesticides and herbicides. And it doesn’t take a megadose of toxins or irritating substances to weaken the liver of some individuals. It can be damaged by a variety of medications, alcohol, and viruses.

Alcoholics are notorious for having bad livers because alcohol is a powerful liver toxin. Over time, heavy drinkers can develop severe scarring of the liver and loss of cells in that vital organ. Chronic heavy drinkers with damaged, poorly functioning livers are also at high risk of liver cancer. This is a result of the chronic scarring, inflammation, and exposure to toxins. But it may not be only heavy drinking that causes problems for some people. Researchers have found even small amounts of alcohol can cause fat deposits in the livers of susceptible individuals.

As a consequence of our modern diet, many people have considerable congestion and even gallstones in their liver. This may be true even though a person has not had a history of gallstones. Gallstones in the liver are an impediment to acquiring and maintaining good health, youthfulness, and vitality. They are, indeed, one of the major reasons people become ill and have difficulty recuperating from illness or recovering from disease.

Liver congestion and stagnation are quite common, yet conventional medicine has no way to determine this. Relying on blood tests for diagnostic purposes concerning liver congestion is inadequate. Most people who have a physical ailment have perfectly normal liver enzymes in the blood, despite suffering liver congestion and stagnation. Liver enzymes become elevated in the blood only when there is advanced liver cell destruction, as in hepatitis or liver inflammation. Liver cells contain large amounts of enzymes, and when they are ruptured, the enzymes enter the blood and signal liver abnormalities. By then, the damage has already occurred. It takes many years of congestion before such an event becomes possible. Therefore, cleansing the liver is an excellent preventative measure as well as a healing, restorative, and rejuvenating practice."

Symptoms of a Toxic Liver

  • Abdominal discomfort
  • Aches and pains
  • Brown spots on the face and hands
  • Dark circles under the eyes
  • Anal itching
  • Bad breath
  • Body odor
  • Sallow or jaundiced complexion
  • Whitish or yellow tongue coating
  • Digestive problems (belching and flatulence)
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness after eating
  • Fatigue
  • Frequent urination at night
  • Migraine headaches or headaches that involve a feeling of fullness or heaviness in the head
  • Inability to tolerate heat or cold
  • Sleeplessness (insomnia)
  • Loss of memory or inability to concentrate
  • Irritability
  • Loss of sexual desire
  • Lower back pain
  • Malaise
  • Menstrual problems
  • Nervousness and anxiety
  • Pain around the right shoulder blade and shoulder (also connected with gallbladder congestion) Puffy eyes and/or face
  • Red nose
  • Small red spots on the skin (either smooth or raised and hard— known as cherry angiomas)
  • Sinus problems
  • Allergies
  • Candidiasis
  • Constipation
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Cellulite
  • Premenstrual syndrome

Benefits of Cleansing the Liver

  • Clearer, brighter complexion
  • Dark circles disappear from under the eyes
  • Some age spots may disappear
  • Digestion improves
  • Weight loss becomes easier; cellulite goes away
  • Energy increases
  • Sleep improves; need to urinate during the night improves
  • Aches and pains disappear
  • Headaches often cease
  • Memory improves
  • Mood is better
  • Allergies go away
  • Facial puffiness disappears
After the decade and a half that I spent on such toxic medications, I frequently do a series of cleanses, liver being one of them. If your liver isn't functioning properly, the rest of your body wont either.