I always considred myself pretty competent when it came to nutrition. Lately, I am feeling a little out of whack and confused. I eat healthy, low on the protein, high in veggies and some fruits but I have been getting a bit dizzy lately. Dr. Fantastic conducts regular blood test on me. Recently, the results have shown that I have low blood sugar. I have been feeling dizzy on occasion, but I have not straight up blacked out and hugged the floor since my Greek wedding (über embarrassing).
Today, I had to go to the lab to take a glucose test. Let me tell you...NOT FUN! I had to fast, then was forced to drink a disgusting sugary concoction, and then sat in the lab for 3.5 lllooooonnnggg hours while they pricked my arm to take blood every hour. Sounds awesome right? To top it off, there was no wi-fi and no internet connection and my phone would not connect to the web. Result - no email and gasp, no Facebook either!
During this time, I continued reading The China Study. I can't get enough of this book, even though I think E could probably read it faster than me at this point! To sum up what I have read so far, animal protein and casein(dairy) accelerate cancer growth, while plant-based protein slows it down. T. Colin Campbell and Thomas Campbell believe that while we are exposed to small amounts of cancer-causing chemicals daily, cancer does not occur unless we consume foods that promote and nurture tumor development. It is a radical idea but his analysis, research, and experiments really make sense. His studies have found that plant protein does not promote cancer growth, even at the highest levels of intake. He believes, "like flipping a light switch on and off, we could control cancer promotion merely by changing levels of protein, regardless of initial carcinogen exposure". I would like to have a shortage in my light switch :). Seriously, fascinating read. Pick it up!
So, we will see what my results are. Some Docs recommend more protein to control the spikes in my blood sugar. Now that I have read a slice of The China Study, I am not too sure I want to do that. Obviously there is plenty of plant protein I can consume like: spinach, mushrooms, asparagus, broccoli, swiss chard, collard greens, cauliflower, and lentils, but they're not always easy to grab on the run. My Dr. also recommended I start to follow a hypoglycemic diet and eat regularly every two hours. Sounds easy right? Not exactly. It is HARD to do with kids, chores, playdates, and just plain running around. I was also told to carry sweets around in case I got a bit dizzy. Now, I don't really crush on sweets that much. I'd much rather have salty foods. If Dr. Fantastic said to carry around sea salted almonds, (or who am I kidding) Ruffles, I would be over the moon! But I don't naturally reach for sweets, even fruits. But, I gotta follow Dr.'s orders! Good thing I am seriously phening for strawberries lately. Yes, I know they are low on the glycemic index but they still count!
With the Fourth of July around the corner, I can't stop thinking red, white, and blue. Yes, this includes foods too. I am a dork. Red-watermelon, raspberries, cherries, strawberries, red bell peppers, tomatoes. Blue- blueberries and blackberries. White- coconuts, yogurt, jicama, and mozzarella.
Nothing says summer and the 4th like strawberries though. This is one fruit I love. There is nothing like a fresh, juicy, sweet, strawberry. My boys feel me on this one. Strawberries don't last more than a few hours in this house. I have actually had to hide the strawberries in the back of the fridge so the boys wouldn't eat MY sweet little strawberries. Selfish right!
Not only are strawberries the most adorably cute, luscious fruit ever, but they are also pure joy to chomp and even better for your health (and waist line)!
Strawberries are extremely high in vitamin C, manganese, calcium, and dietary fiber. As I just typed this I had to do a double take on manganese. Never heard of that? Manganese, as luck would have it, helps you maintain normal blood sugar. Score! Also, it protects your cells from free-radicals, keeps your bones healthy and strong, and promotes optimal performance of your thyroid glands.
Epic Befits of the Sweet Juicy Red Berry
Strawberries are rich in antioxidants.
They also work as anti-inflammatory protection and reduces pain. So for those with infections or huge beefcakes at the gym, chow down.
They are extremely low in calories. Whoo hoo! 1 cup of strawberries have only 49 calories. Which means I can eat, and eat, and eat them without feeling a bit of guilt.
According to The Wold's Healthiest Foods (WHF) book, "Strawberries topped a list of eight foods most linked to lower rates of cancer deaths among a group of elderly people. Recent test tube research found that all eight cultivars of strawberries tested were able to significantly inhibit the proliferation of human liver cancer cells".
More and more research is being done that shows the special nutrient in strawberries can actually stimulate your metabolism and shrink your appetite. Do I need to even go on......
They control blood sugar
More benefits of strawberries can be found in this article.
It goes without saying, you must buy organic strawberries! I know they are more expensive but DO IT! They are listed in the Dirty Dozen and I read an article last December about how California approved of a toxic pesticide to use on strawberry crops.
Eating strawberries plain is probably my favorite way. But, with the Fourth around the corner, I wanted to be a little more creative. So here is my adaptation of Strawberry Shortcake Popsicle.
Vegan Strawberry Pops!
1 1/2 cup of pureed strawberries
1/2 cup of vanilla Oreos (they are vegan!)
2 cups of vanilla coconut yogurt
throw the Oreos in your blender and blend baby blend
vanilla coconut milk yogurt to the blender
Layer a bit yogurt portion into a dixie cups and freeze 30 min
Then the strawberry puree and freeze 30 mins
Then back to the yogurt and freeze overnight
You can combine all of the ingredients and swirl it around for more of a popsicle look.
Serve slightly soft with some crushed graham cracker for a true strawberry shortcake treat!
I hope everyone has a happy 4th!