Category Archives: Food interests

Lent (no sugar) recap

Happy Easter!

Benn far too busy for anyones liking but I thought Easter would be a good way to get back into the writing swing.

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Right, lent was interesting. I cannot say I was 100% processed sugar free all the time but it was a big eye opener. I thought numbered points might help with the recap (all of the following points are my own opinon or observation and not medically or scientidically proven in any way):

1. Processed sugar is in everything! – we (as consumers and producers) rely on it far too much and to really cut out all processed sugar I would have had to cook every little bite from scratch!
2. Processed sugar is the cause of a lot of the body issues I have. This may be the case for most people but I cannot generalise – processed sugar makes my skin oily and spotty; my overall skin condition is better without it; my mood is more consistent without it; colds feel easier to handle without it; and I seem to drink more water!
3. Everything tastes really sweet now. Fruit teas are lovely and sweet and I even have to water down my smoothies and fruit juice! Chocolate is lovely but extremely sweet – no choccy overload for me!
4. My mid morning or afternoon cravings have been reduced – either through less sugar or more fresh fruit and veg.

Those are the main points I could think of but overall I will definitely try and reduce my processed sugar intake on a daily basis as I feel so much better for it!

How did your lent go? And I hope you had a fun Easter!

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Super breakfast!

It’s a shame we don’t always have time for super special breakfasts on a weekday but there’s no reason not to have sometjing really tasty.

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This quick breakfast was sliced avocado on seeded toast and a bowl of baked apple pieces with sliced banana and blueberries. I ‘baked’ the apple in the microwave by cutting it into bite sized pieces and zapping it for 5 minutes while I was doing the toast. The bowl had 2 whole apples in – skins and all. Super tasty and super healthy!

Baked apple has continued to be a saviour during lent as it tastes so puddinh-like without the processed sugar.

Talking of lent, I may have gone overboard at the weekend. No excuses: I just didn’t avoid sugar when I could have. So today (as well as yesterday) it’s back on the no-processed sugar bandwagon!

Give me all of the baked apple!

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Breakfast again!

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Just had to share with you – I had yummy peanut butter and jam oatmeal πŸ™‚ I made the oats with vanilla soy milk as well!

Two points from this:

– I was disappointed that the brand of soy milk I bought contained aspartame (an added sweetener). I understand you have to add stuff to soy milk to make it flavoured but a silly chemical? I was not impressed and wont be buying that brand again.
– I don’t do very well with peanut butter. Has anyone used/tried any seed butters like sunflower or pumpkin? I want to try some but I want the taste to be similar to peanut butter; is it at least a little bit like it?

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Breakfast

Breakfast post!
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I had a smoothie with this too, which I do believe makes this quite a nice healthy breakfast. This bowl had cottage cheese, avocado and one slice of seeded toast with marmite on.

What healthy or not so healthy breakfasts do you grab yourself on a work/busy morning?

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Bento (No.71) and Appetites

Todays bento belongs to the boyfriend.

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This bento contains a ham and cheese salad wrap, cherry tomatoes, grapes, cucumber, cheese triangle and a snack pack of choccy animal biscuits.

I mentioned appetite in the title. This is because this bento would not be enough food for a whole day for the boyfriend. No he’s not a piggy, he is lucky to have a very fast metabolism and has to eat a reasonable amount to sustain his current weight. Soooo, here is his snack bento:

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These snacks are for him to eat throughout the day. He has malt loaf, a few crisps, fruit, a cereal bar and unsalted nuts (in the blue lidded pot).

If I had a lunch that big I might go pop!

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Living with no gallbladder: My food do’s and don’ts

Time for a bit of a side story on my blog. I do talk about this frequently within my bento posts, but I’ve recently been thinking that a couple of specific posts on it would help some people. When I first had my gallbladder out, it would have been such a help to me if I could have found a range of blogs and websites about specific transitions in eating after a gallbladder removal, but alas, it’s mainly medical sites out there :S

This blog post will be specific to my food do’s and don’ts; what I eat and don’t eat, why I eat or avoid those things and other tips. This may help some of you, but please excuse my rambling if it doesn’t πŸ™‚

My food do’s:

– Do always have breakfast – as bile is constantly dripping into my digestive system, not eating for long periods of time makes it uncomfortable (like acid burn), so I always eat breakfast, even if it is just a banana.

– Do up the protein – processed carbs cause me issues and comfortableness if I eat them too often, so I make sure I eat more protein. The protein I eat includes cottage cheese, low fat natural and flavoured yogurts, edamame, fish, chicken, chickpeas (hummus), lentils and quorn.

– Do enjoy your fruit and veg – I can eat all fruit and veg, bar one or two things (although when my stomach isn’t feeling great, I avoid raw vegetables). I’m not able to eat radishes as it was one of my trigger foods, but I always get my 5-a-day in so many different ways; smoothies, soups, snack pots, dipping, baked, roasted, stir fried, steamed πŸ˜€ I especially like baked apples with a sprinkling of oats on top!

– Do snack – again, due to the bile, it is better for me to never have an empty stomach for too long, so, snack it is! I love home popped popcorn, with paprika and pepper on it, or hummus and veggies, or good old rice cakes. I even like sliced apple with a small amount of choccy spread!

– Do exercise! – exercise is a fantastic non-medical way to help with digestive problems. Running, for me is what keeps things moving (apologies for the term!). If there is anyone who has digestive problems after a gallbladder removal, then exercise!! It will solve it!! Exercise how you are able to though, so even a short walk in the fresh air or a nice swim will help.

My food don’ts:

– Don’t eat high fat items often – high fat items, for me, include peanut butter, most nuts, full fat dairy (including cream, milk, cheese and yogurt), fast food (especially battered items), fatty meats and high fat carb items (like pastries) and whole eggs. I have some of these very occasionally but if I eat them too often or eat too much of them, my digestive system does not cope so well and it isn’t comfortable.

– Don’t overeat! – no-one should overeat anyway, it’s not good for you, but having no gallbladder to control the flow of bile means that a very large meal can take a very very long time to digest, which equals the very full feeling for a very long time (for me). I do eat large meals sometimes, but I am a lot more conscious of how overeating affects me.

– Don’t worry! –Β Stress exacerbates a lot of conditions, and it also makes for a unhappy digestive system. By stress I mean worrying about eating the right foods or too much of the not so good foods. Don’t worry! Your main aim should always be to eat lots of fruit and vegetables. I have found all the rest will balance itself out due to being full up on all the good stuff!! Exercise also helps all forms of stress, so get moving!

Overall, just be happy. I get aches and pains sometimes, that are directly to do with the scar tissue from the op. But guess what? They are smallΒ aches.Β Not the excruciating pain I was in when I had my silly gallbladder. I can cope with these, I can enjoy my life, and I am happy and healthy!

Have you got any food do’s and don’ts that are specific for yours or your familys needs?

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Hobbies

I know I keep telling you how busy I am with everything but I thought, for mainly my benefit, that I would list what I actually do:

Day to day:
– Full-time job
– Bento making for 5 people
– Running and the gym

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Hobbies:
– Gaming
– Cooking and baking
– Bento
– Blogging
– Growing vegetables and gardening
– Music (playing drums/singing/recording/mixing)
– Surfing
– Arts and crafts (mainly sewing and drawing)

I also have a part-time flexible contract with the Youth Service, am currently sorting the transfer of module credits to an open university course and I like to spend time with my boyfriend!

I do all of those things as often as I can and love every single one of them!

Do you think I have got too many hobbies?
What hobbies do you have?

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Tasty morning!

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Low fat smoked sausage, chopped and warmed cherry tomatoes, a single scrambled egg and a slice of buttered toast. Now that is how you start the day right!

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Homegrown Vegetables

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While I’m waiting for the training at work to subside and to get into a nice routine, here’s a couple of pictures of part of my harvest this year.
Bearing in mind this is the second year I’ve grown vegetables and the pictures show only a very small percentage of my crop, I know I did fantastically πŸ™‚

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The top picture is of my first picked cabbage πŸ™‚ the second picture is of beetroot, onion, runner beans and a few tomatoes, and below is some of my potatoes!!

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So cute! I can’t wait to grow more stuff next year πŸ˜€

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Surviving in a hotel room…

1 week: no fridge, no oven or microwave, only a kettle; limited money and far from home.

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What to do?

Shopping list:

– Apples

– Granola

– Instant Cous Cous

– Tinned/jar Carrots and Peas

– Jar of Olives

– Instant Noodles

– Food Doctor instant soup/quinoa pots

– Crsipbreads/Crackers

– Oatcakes

– Chocolate Spread

– Marmite

– Jars of Salmon paste

– Popcorn

– Cofee and Tea!!!!

Did I survive?

Of course I did πŸ™‚