For several years my husband and I have been working toward a plant based diet . We would eat that way for a while and then our old addictions to food would resurface on a busy day, a day we are tired, bored, frustrated with things going on that day and we would be back on our old Standard American Diet. S.A.D.
We are to the point of no return now. My husband has to have back surgery, cannot put it off, is scheduled for October and hoping he can make it that long. The doctor told him point blank, if he does not lose the weight he will be having another surgery in a few years. He just had a major back surgery last summer and we were horrified he is undergoing another one this year. A third is out of the question. This one is much worse than the last and I have no doubt the next one will be even worse if we let it happen. We have not gotten the results in yet from his surgeon, but he had to have a cat scan to see if there was damage to the previous surgery site. His weight is pulling on it, so it is very possible. He is not so overweight you look at him and think that man is really fat. He wears it well. He has a physical job so he does have a lot of muscle too. He needs to lose a lot though, around 70 pounds.
So, we have been working the last few weeks to get back on track and I finally told him, lets go buy produce and I will gut out the fridge, reorganize it and fill it with fresh produce. We have beans , rice, pasta, quinoa, and so on, I always have lots of those. I always have. Decades of always being stocked on those basics. We have tons of potatoes , and onions on hand along with a lot of apples and oranges a gift from a friend that saved them from the dumpster , she had permission to take it, and I shared all I could, still giving some away as if yesterday, but we have a good amount left which will be a help.
Here is how our fridge looks tonight. I am so thrilled. I even picked up one fun thing, a four pack of plant based yogurt for an emergency breakfast if one of us is not into oats for some reason one morning.My husband has one last tub of hummis, that is not oil free , which we can get at whole foods , but he will finish it up probably tonight. Tomorrow is our official launch, although we ate perfect today.
Now, why plant based and not vegan ? Well, I am basicly going to be eating vegan, he is not. My husband is not giving up his honey and being a vegan means no animal products used at all. Honey is considered an animal product. He wears leather at work, and I do occasionally make jewelry out of vintage doe skin I have.
I am so excited and motivated. Finally got it all organized and any old food out, and the fridge is full of wonderful things for us to eat on plan. Our son has some butter and a bit of cheese of his own, but it is not much and we will not eat it . The eggs were from baking with our grand daughters a few weeks ago and will go to one of our daughters in the next few days.
We are also oil free but I did make sure to have some vegan” butter’. One is very low fat, one has more fat . No plans to use either of them anytime soon, but it gives us some options if we need them. They stay good a long time .They will not be opened until used. I bought the more fatty one a while back when I was trying to get us back off animal products , and did not realize how much fat it had, so I bought the very low fat one today. I do not really want to use the more fatty one, but it might came in handy for a holiday when we make vegan mashed potatoes for a treat at Thanksgiving or something. I can always pass it on to one of our daughters as they will eat it. That is more likely what I will do. Our younger daughter and her husband make mostly plant based for themselves and their kids but do eat a bit of animal protein as well. Even the lower fat one is off limits for a bit. I have learned we do better if we have some small options when needed, so it is there if we need it down the line. Sometimes just a dab of the vegan butter on a potatoe is a wonderful treat !! But we will hold off on it for a while.
Many people find the no oil , very low fat plan very hard to follow and I get that. But the best way to lost weight is to cut the fat. We both have to lose a lot of weight so that is what we want to do. I also have prediabetes so I have no choice but to cut my fat to get my blood sugar down. Once I get this weight off, all my metallic issues will be gone and that will be a huge relief !! The decision was basically taken away in the last week or so when the doctor told my husband he has to get as much weight off before surgery as possible and keep losing it after and do not gain it back. I would never ask him to do what I am not willing to do and I see the pain he is in and so it is not a hardship at all to eat this way. There are so many wonderful recipes for how we are eating. We both do feel much better not eating the animal products . It is just learning a new normal as this will not be a temporary diet, it will be for life. I am not saying we will not eat a single bite of turkey at Thanksgiving, we might. I think for us, a bit of the real stuff, lean turkey is better than the high fat vegan turkey. I also have to watch gluten, which the better faux meats are made from, as it builds up as I eat it over time and I end up in lots of pain. Which totally irritates me. Why in the heck would I choose pain over eating the right food ? I think we get that little voice in our head. What if it is not the wheat, what if it is just you turned 60 causes that joint pain ? Yeah right, except after a few weeks off of wheat and all glutens, all that pain is completely gone. No one can convince me that food is not addictive. Why else would someone (me) eat food that literally makes them hurt all over like the flu ? I look forward to that and the arthritis pain going away as well. Off of gluten, no arthritis pain, after eating it for a while, joint pain that is miserable. Also goes away a few weeks off of all wheat and gluten.
So, this will be one of the things I will be sharing here. Our plant based journey. Gluten free as well. My husband has some issues with it as well. We believe it is from when he worked at a commerical bread bakery many years ago and ate so much free bread. No real issues until our fifties so it will be interesting to see if our kids end up having it too as they get older . I do believe our oldest daughter at 37 years old does have some issues and tries to avoid it. Anyway, I will share this journey here. As I learn recipes or find seasonings or dressings that are low fat and vegan, and gluten free.I will share those here too !!
I am just so relieved to be back on track. We had a huge salad tonight. Picked up two family sized garden salads from our favorite pizza place, NO cheese, NO croutons and for me NO olives . My husband likes them so he got them. They gave us a fat free dressing that was animal free but we actually used some other ones we had on hand. The ones they gave us are tucked away in the fridge.
So, tomorrow will be a prep and cook day for me !! I will share what I do here. This blog is about my journey and this is the journey we are one now !!! It will not be all I share, there are other parts of our journey, but it is a huge part of our journey !!
In case you are wondering. We are basing our food plan on The Starch Solution by John McDougall.