Week #4 and Mystery Diagnosis

Before I get to my week 4 weigh in, I wanted to update you all on my dr's appointment in Tampa last week.  I met with Dr. Gans at American Institute of Balance.  He and his staff were fabulous.  I just can't say enough about the clinic.  After reviewing my chart, the symptoms I was having and all of the previous testing I had done, he was pretty sure he knew what was wrong.  Of course he wanted to make sure, so he ran about 5 different tests on me.  He tested my inner ear function and my eye movement.  All tests came back normal, just as he expected.  His diagnosis was MdDS (Mal de Debarquement Syndrome).

Mal de Debarquement Syndrome (MdDS) or disembarkment syndrome is a rare disorder of perceived movement that most often develops following an ocean cruise, other type of water travel, or motion experience including plane flights and train travel. For a few, there is no known motion event; the onset appears to be spontaneous. MdDS persists for months to years.

There are two treatments for this syndrome; therapy and a drug called Klonopin.  My dr and I are choosing to do therapy.  I was sent home with a notebook of 9 exercises to do everyday.  These exercises are done while I am moving, either on a exercise ball or a mini trampoline.  I can tell you that they are not fun.  I pray that it works.  Dr. Gans has seen great results with therapy, so we will see.  I have to report back to him in 4 weeks.  I am just thankful to finally have a diagnosis.

In other news, I am thrilled to report to you about my weight loss for the month of January. 

Wordless Wednesday

Saturday Weigh In

Down another pound today. I'm thrilled seeing how I was on vacation for 4 days. So the total for 3 weeks is almost 8 pounds, 7.8 to be exact. The best part is that I'm down 1.4% body fat. Yay!!

My friend posted on her Facebook page this week that for every pound lost it's like losing 4 sticks of butter. I don't know about you but I love that visual. Sometimes I get down about only losing a pound, but when I look at it that way, it just puts me 4 sticks closer to my goal. :)

I've decided to do a juice only fast on Monday for 5 days. I watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dying last night and was so inspired that I decided to give it a go. I'll let you know how it goes.

I hope you all are having a great weekend. We had some rough weather last night and had to spend some time in the basement around 1 am. Not much fun. We are expecting severe storms tomorrow as well. Strange weather for January. Anyone else having crazy weather?

Weekend Fun

Any guesses on where we went this past weekend?  Here's a hint:

Yep, we surprised the girls with a trip to Disney World.  This was somewhat of a last minute trip for us.  Usually when we go it's planned out way in advance, about a year ahead of time.  I decided to see a specialist in Tampa regarding the constant dizziness I experience.  Since Tampa is about an hour away from Orlando, we decided to make a trip out of it and take the girls to Magic Kingdom.  It was tough keeping it a secret for over a month.  Here's how we told them.

I think I was the most excited not to have to keep a secret any longer. I love the look of shock on their faces. Bless their hearts, it was early and they had just woken up. We had a fantastic time with the girls. Many memories were made and I am feeling so incredibly blessed. Can't wait to share more pictures with you, once I get them downloaded, and tell you about the doctors visit.

Enjoy your weekend!

Week 2 weigh in

I'm posting today from my iPhone so I will make this quick. I weighed in this morning and lost 1.4 lbs. I have to admit, at first I was a little bummed, I mean, it wasn't the 4.8 lbs from the week before. Then I thought to myself, at least I lost weight and after all, it's not just about the weight. It's about getting healthy.

So if you are keeping track, I've lost 6.8 lbs in two weeks. I'll take it.

I've also gone 14 days without sugar, meat or dairy. Eating at home is a cinch, it's when I'm out running errands or out to dinner, that the options sometimes are limited when you're eating a Vegan diet. I'm learning to figure it out though and take healthy snack options with me.

I can't wait to share about our fun family weekend with y'all this week. I would love your prayers if you don't mind. On Tuesday I am seeing a specialist for the dizziness. We are going to great lengths to get in to see this amazing doctor and I'm praying he has some answers. To say I'm exhausted dealing with this issue, would be putting it mildly.

Thanks so much for reading and thank you for your prayers.

There's no crying in football

Today's blog brought to you by my hubby.  Thanks honey.

Daddy is a little too obsessed with fantasy football. My daughters, then 3 and 5, sensed this. Instead of trying to cut back on my fantasy football, I decided to welcome them to my world and try to get them addicted, too. Rather than doing the more complex fantasy football where you pick individual players by position, I started a Yahoo 'pick'em' league. For this league, once a week you go online and pick the team you think will win.  You can't get any simpler than that. Based on her love of ballet, Sydney's team was named "I Rock The Tutu". Brooklyn's became "Zhu Zhu Princess" after her toy collection. I recruited my mother-in-law, who is so football obsessed I can't watch games with her, a brother-in-law, and my only two friends who are more addicted to fantasy football than me, to round out our league.

Last year, I'd name off the cities and names for each team, and the girls would pick. This year, I'd start to say the city and they'd cut me off before I'd get to the team. I'd say "Green Bay..." and they'd yell "Packers!". Both girls had learned the names of every NFL to go with the city, although there are occasional pronunciation issues with the Raibers and the Rabens.

The girls have a funny way of picking teams.

The weigh in

I had a great first week.  I cannot believe it's been 8 days since I have had any sugar, white flour, meat or dairy.  To be honest, I have to say I haven't really missed it.  There are days when I would love to have a piece of bread with butter, but other than that, I haven't felt the need to cheat.  I did have to add the caffeine back on day 4.  I just got withdrawal headaches too bad and I didn't want to keep taking Advil.  I figured I could conquer that at a later time. I am not drinking coffee because it's so acidic and I'm trying to balance my PH level.  I will probably start making green tea with Stevia, but for now I'm drinking this.

XS has caffeine without the sugar (uses Sucralose)and has only 6 calories.  The best part, it has 4900% of B12.  That's a whole lot of B12 and it gives me the boost I need to get my day started.

I don't know if I mentioned this in my last post or not, but I do not know my starting weight.  I could probably come within 10 pounds or so if I guessed, but this time around I just didn't want to know.  That may sound odd, but I have my reasons for doing it this way.  You see, every time I start a "diet", the scale is my nemesis.  I live by it, which is not the smartest thing to do.  So this time around, I decided not to let the scale be my guide.  Brian is the only one that knows how much I weigh.  So yesterday, I closed my eyes and stepped on the scale.  I was praying that I had at least lost a pound.  I asked Brian if I had lost anything.  He enthusiastically said, Yes.  I knew by his reaction that it was good.  He asked me if I wanted to know how much and I said you betcha.  When he said 5 pounds (4.8 to be exact, but I'm rounding up.  :) I couldn't believe my ears.  Are you kidding me?  5 pounds in 6 days.  Holy cow, that has never happened before, ever.  I had also lost .8% body fat.  That to me is huge.  The best part is that I didn't starve myself and I was eating nutrient foods.  No fad diet here, just living food.   

Here is what a typical day looks like for anyone interested.

Wake up and have a large glass of water.
I make a vegan protein shake with coconut milk.
Then I have a fresh juice which is usually made of Kale, Apple and Lemon (delish)

Veggie Soup
Large Spinach and Romaine salad with Chickpeas, carrots, sunflower seeds and balsamic vinegar & olive oil

I snack on apples with cashew butter, clementines, and pistachios.  I drink lots of water.

Vegan protein shake with coconut milk
Another garden salad, same as lunch.

The menu will broaden as I learn how to cook vegetarian meals.  I'm stocking up on books this week and combing the Internet.  I love going to bed satisfied, but not stuffed.  I wake up in the morning and I'm not starving.  It's amazing, when you give your body whole, living foods, how full it makes you feel.  I've committed to a Vegan diet (no dairy or meats) until my birthday in April.  I figure anything is doable for 3 months.  If I love it, great, if not, then I can always slowly starting putting meat back in to my diet.  I think the dairy might be gone for good.  I feel great without it.  I'm not waking up congested or sneezing like I used to.  It will be interesting to see if I notice changes in my skin and the dark circles under my eyes.

I'm excited to learn this way of life for myself first, in hopes to have my family join me as we learn a new way of eating and fueling our bodies.  I'd love to hear what you think.  If you have questions or comments, please leave them for me.  I will try my best to respond back to you.  Have a great week. 

"Eat to Live, not Live to Eat" (Quote from a movie I watched last night that rocked my world.  I'll be sharing all about it this week, so stay tuned).

Checkin in. Day#4

I thought I would check in midweek and update on how things are going.  I am feeling really good.  The last 3 days I've had a headache, which I can assume is the lack of sugar and caffeine that I was used to consuming.  I know those will eventually get better.

Today Brooklyn had the day off from school and Sydney went back to school so I had a date with Brooklyn.  I love those times when I get to hang out one on one with my girls. I asked her where she wanted to go to lunch and she said P.F. Chang's.  It's her favorite.  I was hungry and knew I couldn't eat my normal, Orange Chicken, so I opted for the vegetarian lettuce wraps.  Oh my, they were delicious.  I didn't miss the chicken at all.  They are made out of Tofu, which is usually on my no, no list.  I'm one that doesn't believe we should eat soy, especially if it's GMO (Genetically Modified), but today I thought it was a better option than the chicken. 

Why don't I like soy?  Glad you asked.  :)  Soy is Phytoestrogen (plant based estrogen).  Women usually have too much estrogen in their bodies.  Studies have shown that too much estrogen can lead to cancer, cause infertility, lower sperm count in men and it can also mess with your thyroid.  All things I don't want, so I just usually stay away from it.  If you are going to eat it, you want to make sure it's organic or Non-GMO and it's fermented.  I think like anything, moderation is the key.  This is very controversial and if you look on the internet you will find experts on both sides of this topic.  I figure I would air on the side of it being harmful to my body. 

On a typical day, I've been juicing, making vegan protein shakes (pea and rice are what makes up the protein) and eating lots of raw fruits and veggies.  I don't know if I've lost weight because I haven't weighed myself, will do that on Sunday, but I feel better.  That's all that matters.  I am also drinking a ton of water.  That's so important to flush out the toxins because you don't want them hangin out in your body.

On Friday I will do a gallbladder flush.  I'll spare you the details of what happens, but it makes me feel so much better.  I did my first one after I delivered Jonathan.  I was on the verge of a full blown gall bladder attack and was in a ton of pain.  My chiropractor gave me a flush to do and the results were immediate.  I   couldn't believe it.  The pain was gone.  I could think clearer and just felt refreshed.  Well, it's time to do one again.  I've been having a bit of pain on the right side where my gallbladder is located, so I want to make sure to nip it in the bud before it gets too bad.  I will post the cleanse on my blog on Friday if you are interested in it.  The best part is; it's easy, cheap and the results are immediate. 

Here's to good health in 2012.


Happy New Year to you all.  I had a good start to my day, as Brian got the girls this morning and let me sleep in.  Thanks babe.  Today was day 1 of a week long detox I am doing.  I have been awful to my body over the last few months and I'm paying the price for it.  I know better than that, I mean, I really know better.  I love to study health and I am passionate about what our family eats.  I am a huge proponent of organic, raw, unproccesed, and whole foods.  My hubby will tell you I despise High Fructose Corn Syrup, GMO's, Food Dyes, and foods with hormones and antibiotics.  Here is a great article that talks about the effects of dyes on our children.  I will talk more about this in another post.

But when I am tired, stressed or depressed, I just don't care.  I'm laying it all out there because it's the truth.  I've treated my body like a trashcan and it has to stop.  It has to stop for me, my husband and my two beautiful girls.  So with a new year, comes new possibilities.  Brian challenged me to use my blog to keep me accountable, so that's what I am going to do.  Every Monday, I will report in and blog about my progress over that week.  This is not just about weight loss, although that's a huge part of it, but it's finally gaining control of what I eat and not letting my emotions dictate what I put in my mouth.  One of my goals this year is to lose 40 pounds by my 40th birthday in April.  That is a lofty goal I know.  Will I make it?  I have no clue, but I am gonna work my bootie off and try my best.  I'm doing it with what I believe it best for my body; raw, whole, organic foods.  That's it.  No magic diet pills or pre packaged food, just whole foods.

This week I am in detox mode.  I will eat only raw, organic, vegetarian foods and drink fresh juice from my juicer.  That's it.  For exercise, I will be walking and doing yoga, with a little strength training thrown in for fun.  I have to say that Day 1 went well.  I won't lie, I have a giant head ache right now, due to the fact that I haven't had any caffeine and my body is screaming for refined sugar, but I know the first few days are the hardest, so I expect it all.  I told Brian today that if I snap at him this week, to not take it personally.  :)

Here's what my day looked like today:  smoothies for breakfast, giant spinach and mixed greens salad with carrots, sunflower seeds, cucumbers, beets and olive oil and balsamic vinegar for the dressing.  For snack I had a cashew side salad from Whole Foods, lots of water, and I had another smoothie for dinner.  I also ate a bunch of carrots, an apple and a couple of oranges.  Whole Foods makes some great vegan salads that are to die for. I will probably be living there this week. On the Do Not Eat List:  breads, sugar, meat of any kind, cheese/dairy products, anything fried, caffeine and alcohol.

This is the only way I know how to really detox my body and get rid of alot of the toxins and inflammation going on in my body right now.  I'm kind of making up my own plan.  I'm not following a diet per se.  There are some great books out there on raw eating if you want to check them out.

Natalia Rose is one of my favorite raw food authors.  She even has a section about infertility on her blog and about the link between what you eat and the ability to become pregnant.  You can check it out here. 

This is another great book and I love her story about why she started eating raw food. You can check out Carol's blog here.

So that's it in a nutshell.  I've also ordered two DVD's from Amazon that I cannot wait to watch.  I think it will be life changing.  I will definitely be telling you about those in the future.

Do you have a weightloss goal in 2012?  I'd love to hear about it. 

Cheers to a happy and healthy new year!

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