The time I had spent caring for my mom had taught me a lot about my own health. Over the last 5 years, I observed everything that my mom ate or drank. I noticed behaviors that would manifest after she ate anything white; bread, pasta, potatoes, corn products and boxed foods with preservatives always seemed to push my mom over the edge. All bets were off and I found myself bracing myself for the storm.
Mom would become agitated and or hallucinate scary hallucinations if she ate any food that was not whole and natural. Mom's behavior patterns could clearly be expected to change once she ingested foods that had high starch content or ones that were processed and filled with ingredients that were hard to pronounce.
Through my mom, I learned how to lose weight without any effort; weight that seemed to resist any diet of my past, suddenly melted away. Changing my approach to food and rethinking the foods my mom had fed us all her life, opened up a new world of flavors for my family and me. Spices, herbs, vegetables, lean meats and fish, legumes, fruits and nuts, masterfully blended to create gourmet meals. My taste buds sang and my waistline shrank. My fussy mom, she loved my kitchen creations and she was happy.
The best way to make a life long change is to substitute unhealthy choices with healthier options. Here is a short list to get you started.
Gluten Products Replacements
Udi Brand Gluten Free is excellent. The bread holds up in a sandwich very well. My mom loved sandwiches made from Udi Bread.
Ezekehial 4:9 Sesame bread is also very good. It is made from sprouted wheat using the recipe from the bible. It is referred to as Jesus bread. Very good bread that my mom could tolerate. It is found in the freezer section of most supermarkets.
The Udi pizza shells are also fabulous. I often make my own gluten free pizza with the Udi frozen pizza shells. They are found in most supermarket freezer sections.
Tinkyada brand rice pasta is the best. It has a good consistency and holds up when it is cooked according to the package directions. My Italian mom LOVED this pasta, she always felt like she was "cheating."
Bob's Red Mill brand of gluten free flour is excellent. I use Bob's gluten free all purpose flour in place of regular flour in cookie recipes. My mom could never tell the difference in the cookies; she loved oatmeal cookies the most.
I use Coconut flour (or gluten free bread crumbs) to make Oven Fried Chicken.
Instead of using gluten flour to thicken sauces and gravies, I use chia seeds. I grind them up and use a 1/2 teaspoon of the seed powder. It has less calories and creates a thick gravy that is delicious.
Almond milk, So Delicious Coconut Milk and hemp milk are all great alternatives to dairy. Dairy tends to cause inflammation in the body like gluten. The inflammation is what brings on illness and health issues that are difficult to treat. Cutting out dairy has improved my arthritis pain. Dairy free frozen treats by So Delicious are amazing.
Eat more vegetables and fruits.
Vitamix Blender. Yes, Vitamix is expensive but it is a health investment. I can not live without my Vitamix now that I own one. I use it ever day, sometimes 2 or more times depending on what I am making.
Smoothies are a great way to make vegetables a regular part of your day. Blending vegetables and fruit together in the morning with a serving of good quality protein powder is a fine way to fuel ones body and drop unhealthy pounds of fat. Smoothies are delicious and will leave you wanting more.
Juicing fresh vegetables, especially vegetables that you normally do not eat, provides lots of nutrition from whole foods. Beets, carrots, celery, dandelion greens, grapes and apples juiced together makes a delicious cocktail that boosts energy faster than a cup of coffee. I think more clearly after drinking fresh raw vegetable juice. When my mom drank the fresh juice, she would "wake up" and be able to communicate a little better. Beet juice helped give my mom more good days; our goal for her when she was alive.
An inexpensive juicer that works very well is The Big Mouth Pro by Hamilton Beach. It is about $70 on Amazon. I think I have seen them in Walmart too. Make sure it is the PRO.
Eating for health is how I eat these days. I feel better. I have more energy and am able to do more good in the world because of my improved health. I believe I will have a better chance of avoiding the "crazy gene" because of the changes I have made in my diet.
I believe my mom's end of life was more peaceful because of the whole foods I brought for her to eat every day. Smoothies, fresh vegetable juice made with different greens, fruit, soups and Susie Sandwiches sustained my mom to the very end.
The day my mom stopped eating and drinking was the last day she was awake. Smoothies helped her to get nutrition. The consistency of the smoothies was perfect and easy for her to swallow when she wasn't able to swallow chewed food any longer. My mom, she did not suffer. She did not starve. She went to sleep and never woke up. The perfect ending to a very long life.
And this is how I helped my mom with food.