Thursday, January 21, 2010

My latest trip

Yea, I’m back from my trip. Yea yea yea! I’ve been gone since Jan. 3. That was too long. First I was in DC for a week. I posted about that already. Then I was in Berkeley, CA for the rest of the time. Well, veganbarbie indulged herself in this vegan mecca. On the healthy side, I asked for a fridge in my hotel room; no problem, got it in 10 minutes. There were 3 great grocery stores within a couple of miles of my hotel. I discovered the best one last, but they were all great. I got wonderful fresh California produce. Yum! I ate well. Usually a salad with lettuce greens, kale or bok choy, raw veggies (zucchini, beets, broccoli, asparagus, tomatoes, bell pepper, not all at once!), frozen berries (cherries yum! Strawberries, blueberries), edamame, and my seed mixture (sunflower, hemp, and ground flax). It was luscious. I usually had fruit for brekky, and then this salad for lunch and dinner. I got many remarks about the salad, and after a while, people started saying “that looks good.” Here's a picture:

Going from mostly healthy to least, here were my other food adventures:

I met up with a couple of "nutritarians" (from the Fuhrman member forums) for dinner at one of their homes. That was a blast! We cooked up chili, kale with orange sesame sauce, and an apple crisp for dessert (already made by the host—yum!). And Anne gave me some fresh dates (dried, but fresh compared to what I get in Wisconsin), which I ate a little too many of during the rest of the week, oops.

I also went to a raw vegan restaurant (Cafe Gratitude) a couple of times. The entrees were healthy. The first time I had a tamale with butternut squash as its filling (not raw), and black beans and cole slaw on the side. The second time I had a very yummy salad and nutty-mushroom soup. About the only thing wrong with these is they had some salt. I indulged in the desserts too. I won’t say what they were because I think I should only talk about healthy foods on this blog to spare readers of developing cravings for slightly unhealthy food. These were raw vegan desserts, made with nuts and dates, but they also probably had quite a bit of agave nectar in them. They were good, and didn’t make me feel crappy the next day, maybe because there were no refined grains?

I also went to a banquet at a fancy Chinese restaurant. I thought maybe I would go off-plan for the rare opportunity to indulge in some delicious dumplings, but it was a meat and seafood restaurant. Vegetarian food wasn’t their specialty. I ate some uninteresting tofu. I was there for 3 hours watching everyone else eat, so I also ate some salty yet bland noodles that were on the table with all the meat and seafood. I was disappointed that I went off-plan and didn’t even enjoy it. I think this led me down the slippery slope of thinking if I’m going to go off plan, I should go to the Herbivore Restaurant, a vegan restaurant a few blocks from my hotel.

So finally, I did go to this Herbivore restaurant on the last 2 days of the trip, thinking, this is my chance to eat at an all-vegan restaurant, and it was fun to have this menu full of vegan entrees and desserts. Dare I confess I went there twice? Yes, I did. I had dinner and dessert both times. Sorry to confess this to all the people who think I’m a great example! After going there once, I wanted to go again and try another entrée out. It’s a slippery slope!

The scientist in me monitored my reactions to the food. I was fine until I went to the vegan restaurant at the end of the trip and ate the refined grains, chocolate, sugar, oil and salt. After those meals, I was hyper-active and couldn’t sleep. And I got puffy from the salt. I still feel nauseas 2 days later. That feeling is reminiscent of my SAD (Standard American Diet) days. I think I was always slightly nauseaus when I ate that way all the time. (was it the refined grains? I don't know for sure). That’s probably why I didn’t use to overeat even though I was overweight from the unhealthy food. Another thing I noticed is that the SAD food does not convert to much poop. All that stuff probably just gets converted to fat. Not much comes out. I thought that was kind of humorous. Fortunately I wasn’t on the diet long enough to get constipated.

So I wasn’t perfect on this trip. Let’s see, Dr. Fuhrman says you can let 10% of your calories be unhealthy. I calculated I’ll have to eat healthy for about a month to make up for this. I’d just as soon eat healthy for six months! I am done with wanting a splurge, I hope for a long time. I am so happy to be eating my fruits and veggies today. This healthy stuff has become my comfort food, thank goodness.

I have a lot of trips planned this year, so I guess I just have to do a lot of grocery shopping while traveling. Right now, that sounds just fine!

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