REAL, FRUGAL, HEALTHY, and FUN!!!
“The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine, or the slowest form of poison.” I love that quote from Ann Wigmore. I do believe food can be very healing or very destructive.
I suppose I’m one of those unlucky, lucky people who feels kind of terrible when they don’t eat right. It’s a curse and a blessing at the same time. It’s a curse because lets say I do want to blow my healthy eating habits just for a day. Let’s say one day, I want to start my day off with those toaster strudel’s you buy in the freezer section. You know, the ones you heat up in the toaster and drizzle with cream cheese frosting. I used to love those when I was little. So, let’s say I wanted to start my day with one of those, and then for lunch I wanted a gourmet bagel sandwich from Einstein’s Bros Bagelry. Then, for dinner, let’s say I wanted cheesy tortellini with a banana split for dessert. Honestly, I’d probably have a slight belly ache after breakfast, a pretty sore one after lunch, and at the end of the day, it’d be really bad. Also, I wear my belly aches on the outside, so I’d probably look 5 months pregnant. The intense bloating would make it uncomfortable to move, so I’d sit/lay around miserable. The next morning, my belly would still be aching, and my digestive system would slow so much that I wouldn’t be able to go to the bathroom. Of course all of this misery does not immediately disappear once I start eating clean again. It takes time for my body to recover from the damage.
On the bright side, I have a lot of motivation to eat properly. I was talking to one of my sisters earlier this week. She was saying how it might be easier for her to eat better if she felt ill when she ate badly. She said she feels the same no matter what she eats. It really does help to stay on track if your body punishes you when you deviate.
Unfortunately, a healthy lifestyle, filled with a proper diet and adequate exercise is not an automatic cure to every ailment. Even when you eat perfectly clean and exercise regularly you can still get sick. You can still feel rundown and overwhelmed. You can still feel tired. You might even catch a cold, or even the flu.
A proper diet paired with exercise makes your body stronger, inside and out, from top to bottom. It strengthens your body’s defenses against colds, flus, disease, and infections of various sorts. It can help manage chronic symptoms due to conditions beyond your control, such as autoimmune diseases. Also, though it may lower your risk of heart disease and cancer, there is no guarantee.
I eat very clean and keep myself quite active. Still, my health isn’t perfect. In January of this past year, my whole family got hit with the flu. It was miserable. We went down one after another. I knew when my younger boys got it that I was going to get it, too. Mom’s always get what their young children have, as we can’t help but cuddle them, even when they’re so contagious. I literally don’t remember anything about January, other than the flu. It was in our house the entire month, from the time the first person got it, until the last person got rid of it. I was either caring for the ones that had it, or fighting it off myself.
This past week is another example. I’ve been exhausted in the mornings. I wake up from 8 hours of sleep and I’m so tired still. I feel like a zombie the first 3 hours of the day. My head has been in a fog. I naturally have low blood pressure, and it feels like it drops especially low in the morning. I live in El Paso, and it is quite hot already. Also, our air conditioner has not been working well. I drink a lot of water, but I think I may need more electrolytes. I’m working on that, as well as getting the air conditioner fixed. Also, I did have some lab work done. I come from a family where just about every autoimmune disease is present, so there is always a possibility.
It really goes beyond the flu and low blood pressure symptoms, though. I mean, I live a very healthy lifestyle. Almost annoyingly for my husband, at times (though he ultimately is very supportive). I still stress out sometimes. I’ve had cavities at times. I get pimples here and there. I experience headaches and seasonal allergies.
I’m still very normal. I don’t always feel 100%. However, I usually feel great. I’m strong. I don’t easily get out of breath. I can do the monkey bars with my kids at the park. I’m able to control my digestion. And there are always the “what if’s” that I can’t answer. You know, for example, what if I didn’t live this lifestyle? Where would I be? How would I feel? I’m sure I wouldn’t be where I am now.
Don’t be discouraged if you feel like you’re doing everything right and you don’t always feel perfect. You wont. Even if you don’t slip up. There are things beyond your control. Things you are born with. Things in the environment. Just remember, you are stronger than you would be without your healthy lifestyle.