Weightless Wednesday

Weightless Wednesday: Food Allergies is No Joke

Posted by on May 16, 2012 in Corn Free, Gluten Free, Healthy Eating, Parenting, Weightless Wednesday | 8 comments

Today, I was a mad woman cleaning out my pantry, getting rid of more junk and I don’t have that much to rid. I am at a lost for my 2 year old son, who has a ton of food allergies and food sensitivities. Just when I thought I had it under control, his skin breaks out in eczema, his diapers get worse again and it is driving me batty. Tuesday morning I had to take him to a new doctor because his stools have changed so much that it is alarming. In case you are not a mom, I apologize, but for moms, those poopy diapers tell a story on what is going on the inside of their little bodies. Color, odor, consistency all means something and even I am at a lost on what I should do. I have done various tests for my son. IgG test, which was told it was about 50% accurate in diagnosing food sensitivities *sighs* no conclusive enough for me since he was still having issues. Finally saw a medical doctor that does non invasive testing, which is great and it has helped me and my daughter, who we both sat still through it, but for my son, we got a few new ones, but we couldn’t complete the whole panel. A previous stress assessment test conflicted, but at least he was able to tolerate the entire test and it showed sensitivities to everything it feels like, including fruits, all nuts, peanuts, soy, gluten, dairy, coconut, egg, corn…need I go on? And what kills me is that he really can’t have a banana or applesauce, foods that are so good for us, he can’t have right now, so I need to really, really take charge of our health. What drives me so batty is that I have to call every single company to find out if there are any corn derivatives in their products. Forget emailing anyone….I just got one today from Happy Baby Foods that all of their stuff is corn and gluten free, unless corn is stated on their labels. But out of all the non-dairy milks out there, he can only drink Hemp Milk and out of all the hemp milk brands that ALL contained corn derivatives, but Living Harvest, changed their formula this month and is now corn free, but I still don’t know if I have a batch that is corn free yet. Yes, this is driving me batty. So Tuesday, we got some more blood work done, I requested a Vitamin B12 since he eats no eggs, dairy and little meats, it is concerning for me. I read this fantastic article that morning about B12, here is the article. You see, a B12 deficiency effects the nervous system and digestive track. Given his Sensory Processing Disorder and all of his tummy issues it would make sense. The doctor said he would order it, but has yet to see a child with a deficiency this young. Well a call from the doctor this morning showed he had high levels of Vitamin B12. I am glad I asked as common side effects of having too much is insomnia (hello 3am wake ups for an hour or so), skin rashes (yes, even eczema) and loose stools. But he said we still have to proceed with the other allergy and stool testings he recommended. I had no idea why he was getting too much, since B12 comes from dairy, eggs, and meats. He is egg and dairy free and eats meat, but about a couple times per week by choice....

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Weightless Wednesday: Can a gluten-free diet help me lose weight?

Posted by on May 9, 2012 in Gluten Free, Uncategorized, Weight Loss, Weightless Wednesday | 0 comments

My gluten free adventures began in January of 2006, at a time when gluten free was better than six years before that, but not as good as it today. With all of the hype that gluten free will help you lose weight, here is my thoughts: To answer the question, the answers is YES and NO. When the body suffers from chronic inflammation, it is difficult to lose weight. When the body is stressed due to food sensitivities, lack of sleep, work stress, exercise is stress, perhaps throw in some relationship stress or even sitting in 2 hours of traffic daily, it is all stress which increases inflammation in the body. When the body is stressed, the hormones are not balanced which is key factor in weight loss. Balancing hormones that help to control our appetite, stress, sugar levels (not table sugar, but glucose in the body that is used for energy) is what helps keep our metabolism fired up and working for us. Let me repeat, it is balancing hormones that helps the body lose weight. When cortisol is elevated in the body, the body is actually increasing fat utilization and breaking down muscle tissue. Not a very kind hormone. So for those who are doing everything by the book and not seeing the scale budge you can thank cortisol for that. Gluten increases gut inflammation in the body, which is whey those with Celiac or gluten sensitivity may have one or several of the 300 symptoms that occurs. Studies are showing that gluten free diets help a number of health issues. A lifetime of a bad diet, chronic stress, prescription and OTC medicines, antibiotics makes us more prone to developing a gluten sensitivity (and other food sensitivities) and when the gut is imbalanced, weight gain occurs. However, Celiacs come in all shapes and sizes, not the thin and fragile as once termed in medical books. For those who have done the Atkins diet or any other form of “low carb” diet with huge success, most likely have a gluten sensitivity. You see, many realize the quality of our foods is less today than it was a few years ago. In fact, a wheat stalk contains 50X more gluten today than 50yrs ago! Why? It is highly processed for mass production. The fact it is in practically everything from salad dressings, taco seasonings to some chocolates makes our bodies less able to digest gluten. When we eat too much of one food group, our bodies says, slow down, I can’t process all of this, puts on the breaks and begins to back up into the body so to speak. When the body is no longer digesting it, other health ailments peak up, migraines, arthritis/joint pain, heart disease, diabetes, Crohns disease, infertility, thyroid issues, the list goes on, making food our poison more than our medicine. It takes approximately nine months for the body to begin to heal internally and inflammation to decrease, if a strict healthy diet that is free of processed and inflammatory foods, diet that is balanced with good fats and proteins to help control blood sugars, seven hours of sleep per night and proper supplementation to help aid in healing. That is what it takes to lose weight in a nutshell. If you did not ready My Gluten Story above, it took me ten months to start losing the weight I had gained from internal inflammation, even though I felt like I was starving in the beginning, it is just how the body works sometimes. I do feel many of us can benefit from a...

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Weightless Wednesday: My Heavy Soul

Posted by on May 4, 2012 in Single Mom, Teen Mom, The Missonal Mom, Weightless Wednesday | 4 comments

So this post is not on a Wednesday, but I giving myself some grace for how I have been feeling. It has been two weeks since my last post on My Heavy Heart and quite a bit has happened. You see, when God rocks your world, someone else wants to rock it too…I have often heard when He moves your heart to watch out for any spiritual warfare going on in your life. When I stepped off the plane, which was an hour late, I texted my husband that I had landed. He was driving back from Indy with the kids knowing my daughter had to be at school the next day. We discussed getting back by a certain time. When he replied back that he was enroute, I was not pleased, but texted back, “Why so late?” He called me angry yelling that he is doing the best he can, etc. I took a deep breath and chose not to retaliate…Ah, caught that right away. It was another crazy week and a half. I had an anxiety attack on Monday because I was constantly running around non stop, trying to make it here and there. I don’t get them often, only had 3 in my entire life, but I can recognize when I am doing too much and will get it under control. With all the craziness, even I fell off the bandwagon of my own healthy eating patterns, drank too much coffee and was eating foods with cane sugar, which is a no-no for me right now. My son has a ton of food allergies, which affects his behavior. I am seeing it first hand how food does affect the mind and its thought process. Reading food labels, calling companies to find out if they have any hidden sources of corn, gluten is quite a process. Cooking and baking for him constantly is another source of stress, because he has to eat and loves to eat! That Friday night, after a crazy week, my husband and I finally had a moment to talk. I just busted out how this teen mom on this plane moved my heart, but I am being attacked from all angles, my impatience, my relationship with him and not being upfront on how I feel about our son’s food allergies and I really need his support to be on board, the constant running around.. Yep, I just threw up all my emotions on him. (it is fun when we do that, isn’t it?) My husband, gracious and way more mature in his spiritual walk than I am really just helped me to understand, that all was ok in what I was feeling. I just said, I cannot explain the way I am feeling, I want to take ownership of my feelings and actions, but this is so unlike me. I hate that I have been so hard on the kids, my son’s irrational behavior also doesn’t help, 3 tantrums in one day is not like him, but I can’t blame him. I have felt like nothing has gone right. But I made this awesome cake for him…may I share the pic? Since his favorite song is Wheels on the Bus, this is what I made him: I feel like I did something right… Talking with a good friend who “just happened to read my blog” teaches at high school for teen moms where child care is offered so they graduate high school. She teaches health education classes through an organizations he works for called Women’s Health Foundation. She offered for me to teach...

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Weightless Wednesday: My heavy heart

Posted by on Apr 18, 2012 in Faith, Parenting, Single Mom, Teen Mom, The Missonal Mom, Weightless Wednesday | 7 comments

This is not going to be a post about weight issues, but one about what is weighing in my heart. I haven’t spoke much about my faith, I have quite a background actually. I was baptized Muslim due to an agreement with my parents, but when they divorced, I went through the crash course to being converted to Catholic at the age of 15. It wasn’t until I started dating my husband when I began to question faith again and became a Christian in June 2003. I’ll have to share my journey for another time. You see, I have often heard of God speaking and moving in people’s lives. I have felt promptings and “whispers” but never acted on them, purely out of fear and being worried about what “others thought.” It all happened on Monday on my way down to Tampa for work. Here is how my day started: A month ago, I received a twitter invite for Mom Bloggers to experience a morning at the Peninsula Spa in Chicago. Wow! I thought, how in the world did I get picked to do have this fun opportunity? I don’t consider myself an influential person and I just started blogging. I am just someone who purely loves to help folks get healthy and make positive lifestyle changes. I thanked God privately for this invite. It was a wonderful experience. Each service was amazing and the food was made healthy and tasty. I felt relaxed and connected with other local bloggers: Sassy Mom Chicago, Evolving Stacey and Miss Lori (yes from Miss Lori’s campus). I love spas and treatments, I won’t lie, but treating myself is few and far between. I had a rushed and whirl wind day. After the Spa, picked up my daughter, get to Whole Foods, get her to dance class, catch a cab to O’Hare to get on a flight for Tampa for work. Here is where the story unfolds. How often do you hear a church pastor talking about God’s nudges on an airplane? I always had a hard time believing it until I sat next to a single, teen mom of a 15m old boy on the plane. He was adorable and reminded me of my son. Pudgy, blue eyes and a wiggle worm. She apologized profusely for her son’s behavior in which I replied I have two kids, please do not apologize. I opened up my computer to begin working. I tried to help her a bit in calming her son down, I know it can be tough. It was 7pm, understandably he was tired, cranky. She looked at me and asked what did I do for work? I told her as she was giving her son pop and fruit punch juice. It was hard for me to not say a thing about that. It was not my place. Then our conversation began: Her: Are you a single mom? Me: No, but my mom was…and I have great respect for single moms. Her: Me too, I am moving back to Tampa to start a new life and live with my mom. I have seen her twice in 14yrs (if I heard her correctly) Me: Well that is great to be able to start fresh for your son. I bet you are excited Her: Eh, she shrugged her shoulders I closed my computer and listened to her, her story on what happened, her son being a preemie, the baby’s dad, etc. I will not disclose it all to respect her privacy. But as her son was getting more fussy, she was getting more frustrated…...

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Weightless Wednesday: How fast did you lose the baby weight?

Posted by on Apr 12, 2012 in Healthy Eating, Postpartum Weight Loss, Weight Loss, Weightless Wednesday | 4 comments

I had a friend and local business owner recently post this on her Facebook page and the answers were honest, but perhaps a couple too honest. I take weight loss and being overweight seriously. Growing up an overweight child, I had my fair share of being on “diets” and adult body issues that stem from childhood. With recent public scrutiny Jessica Simpson is getting about her current pregnancy weight, I have no doubt she’ll get back within the year. Being a fitness professional, I trained pre and postpartum women. I teach fitness professionals how to train expecting and postpartum moms. I have dived into maternal and infant health journals the last semester of my graduate work realizing this is where I wanted to be involved with because I learned 9 years ago, B.K. (Before Kids) is postpartum moms are often forgotten about and postpartum moms are sensitive, tired and desperate to get back to where they were. I was like anyone else who went into their first pregnancy. I am going to eat healthy, exercise every day, I am going to stay in shape. HA! Nausea, vomiting kicked in, fatigued and eating gluten free for only 10m due to my health issues, I was desperate to eat carbs, like burgers, pizzas…I resisted, I opted to sleep and not workout instead. But being on lower carb diet, as gluten free foods were not that good 6 years ago, I found a few that I liked and survived on baked potatoes, popcorn and some brand of gf bread that was tolerable…in one month, I gained 10lbs due to extra stresses at work and finding some gfree goodies that I had missed and ate moderately…I was secretly depressed inside. I gained 45lbs my first time around, it wasn’t my plan, but reality kicked in at my 6wk postpartum check up realizing, I had to lose those last 20lbs. I cried when I looked in the mirror, having fond memories of my size 6 clothes. Well, I got into the gym and worked my butt off…I thought breastfeeding was going to help, it does, believe me, it came off fast those first few weeks, but I held on to the last 10lbs until I was done nursing my daughter, after that, the hard work paid off and was back within 3 months. The second time around, I gained only 35lbs, much better, but it was harder to lose, I’ll be honest. Not only did I have another c-section, my uterus ruptured during my VBAC (I’ll save it for another post). I had super surgery and had to take more time off. My son was exhausting, he never took a bottle from anyone, I was it. He didn’t sleep through the night until around a year old. Chasing my super active toddler, lacking sleep and motivation to get to the gym, I just couldn’t get there. I nursed him until he was 16m old. Knowing from my first experience, I knew once I stopped, it would just come right off..right? Yep, wrong and humbled again..I didn’t “work my butt” off like I did the first time. My son will be 2yrs old in 2 wks and I am now back to pre-pregnancy weight minus a few.. (yes super excited), but it took me 2 years! You see, every single mom is struggling a battle with postpartum weight loss, it doesn’t matter if you have 25, 15 or 5lbs to lose.. if your child is 6 months or 6 years old it still lingers for us. I find proud moms bragging if they lost it...

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Weightless Wednesday: How Far I Have Come

Posted by on Mar 28, 2012 in Family Health, Parenting, Weight Loss, Weightless Wednesday | 1 comment

Two weeks ago, I was having lunch with a friend from my daughter’s school. Last year, she enticed me to join her to do a mom workout from trainer who went from a size 22 to a size 6, Type I diabetic and all (amazing story). I was still nursing my son at the time, he was 11 months old and really just wanted to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight, which was 10lbs. However, I knew my body, I was still breastfeeding and my body just holds onto that extra weight (as I learned from my first one). With my background, I knew that working out will help shed the weight faster once I stopped nursing. I was eating healthy (for the most part), but even I longed to get back into my skinny jeans. So she said to me, “Jasmine you look great, how much have you lost since last year?” I had to do the math. “Gosh I said, 15lbs” Even I hadn’t realized how much I had lost in a year and I was past pre-pregnancy weight. She said, “That is fantastic”. You see, I weigh myself daily. Some say that is healthy, some say that is not, but for me, it keeps me in line. But when I stepped on that scale that morning, all I could think about was how much more I wanted to lose, because I am determined to get back into a two-piece this summer and keep up with my super active kids. I didn’t think how far I had come… My weight issues stem from childhood. I was a thin child, but my parents started a pizza place fast food business when I was in second grade. Though my mom cooked fantastic homemade meals, I ate there a lot. Pizza puffs, mozzarella sticks, cheeseburgers and fries, you name it I had it for dinner a few days a week. I see the difference in my school pictures between first and second grade. I was an overweight child. I remember thinking at a young age, I wanted to go on a diet to lose the weight, yes as young as 7 years old and that began my vicious cycle (I’ll save that for another post). I look back at that little girl now and thinking how far I have come today with my own personal demons of weight issues. I eat healthier than I did even a year ago, I enjoy eating vegetables, in fact I start my day with a green smoothie, I don’t need coffee to get me going anymore, I learned some more food triggers that were draining my energy. You see, it is important for me to be a positive role model for my daughter. We talk about eating healthy, how it makes strong bodies and gives us energy. I don’t use the word “diet” and I am very, very conscious to NOT say negative words about myself in front of her, “Like I am feeling fat today” or “I need to lose more weight” or “this outfit makes me look fat”, in fact, the word fat is not part of the vocabulary until she can understand how and why body fat is important. This is important for moms who have daughters, because what we say and do can positively or negatively effect their emotional and psychological wellbeing. If damaged, it carries with us women forever. I was trying on some of my old clothes yesterday, the ones I taught group fitness classes in and there is an internal excitement that says, YES! I can fit...

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