Archive for the 'Wheatgrass' Category

Healing Crisis


December 13th, 2009

double shot
For the last six weeks or so, I’ve made a point of drinking wheatgrass regularly. Not every day. I aim for five days a week. ANN WIGMORE, my wheatgrass hero, recommends in her book to take days off. This gives the body a chance to rebuild and regenerate (kind of like working out) as wheatgrass is very powerfully detoxifying. For me, it’s almost too powerful as I’m recovering from a severe toxic exposure. The LAST TIME I did a focused wheatgrass regimen like this, some very interesting things happened. My health saga has been long and sordid. I have seen more doctors in the last few years than probably most people see in their lifetime. So far, I’ve managed to STUMP them all with my unusual issues. I’ve tested positive for a number of serious medical issues, but I don’t really fit neatly into any diagnostic categories. In the beginning, this was extremely frustrating for me. But I’ve come to realize that it’s really a blessing. Since there really are no answers for me, I am forced to find my own answers. Don’t get me wrong. I still go to the doctor. Frequently. I see allopathic and naturopathic practictioners. I listen to what everyone says.  Everyone holds a different piece of the puzzle. I soak it all in, and then I wait to feel what resonates for me. I’ve learned to trust my intuition.

heidi
One of my most helpful resources has been my friend, HEIDI. She is a nutritionist from the Seattle area and has made a NUMBER of APPEARANCES on my blog. There is only so much a doctor can tell you in a fifteen minute appointment. Heidi is a master of filling in the gaps and pointing me to the answers I’m looking for. If you are ever in need of a nutritional consultant, I would highly recommend her.

ear
This leads me to my latest medical development…CANDIDA. I was completely surprised to discover this. I went to see my doctor while I was in Minnesota last week about a respiratory infection. I mentioned in passing that I had a cut on my mouth and behind my ears that wouldn’t heal, and she knew what it was right away. Who knew?

detox and healingIronically, I had just been reading this book on the plane the day before which talked about different issues related to detox. I read all about candida being an issue and it never occurred to me that I was on to something. Talk about the wisdom of the subconscious!  This book is an interesting blend of allopathic and naturopathic perspectives written by a medical doctor who evolved beyond the boundaries of traditional medicine.  An interesting read.  It’s the first thing I’ve read by a traditional doctor that bridges the gap between toxic exposure and the types of issues I am dealing with.

pancakes
In the meantime, Heidi made some dietary recommendations for me to discourage the yeasties. Looks like I won’t be eating any of these for a while.

choc tort
Or these. Time to cut out the sugars and starches. I hope to make some good progress on this issue before school starts up again. Right now, I’m definitely experiencing a healing crisis. One of the rights of passage of candida recovery is the infamous ‘DIE-OFF‘ or Herxheimer reaction. Essentially, as the yeast dies off, it pollutes your body with toxic metabolic by-products which must be processed. It’s kind of like an extreme detox. I can definitely vouch for that. But this is good news. It means I am making progress. I’m climbing up a rung on the ladder to ultimate healing. At least, that’s how I like to look at it.

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Staging My Comeback


March 15th, 2009


Well, I think we passed a hump here in Minnesota. It’s still cold, but I think we’re definitely past the sub-zero era for this year. And the days are getting longer. Time to get my WINDOW GARDEN going again.

mixed sprout
This is a mixed sprout tray I started. I suppose, technically, it’s a micro-green tray, as sprouts grown in dirt are officially micro-greens. (I kind of prefer the micro-greens to the stringier variety.) This tray is a mix of buckwheat sprouts and a spicy sprout mix from SPROUT PEOPLE.

wheatgrass
Initially, I was having a bit of a mold problem on my wheatgrass trays.

plastic wrap
I suspect it largely had to do with this. Did I mention that it gets REALLY COLD here in Minnesota? Everyone covers their windows here with plastic wrap. It’s good for keeping warm, but bad for air circulation which is apparently the number one cause of mold on wheatgrass trays. So anyway, I got an air purifier going. I’ve been cranking it, and it seems to be helping.

graceful sprouts
Aren’t they graceful little things? They turned out really colorful. They have this beautiful reddish color which is supposed to mean a really high mineral content (at least that’s what I’ve been reading). I tried something new this batch which I read about on the TREE OF LIFE page. They’re EFFECTIVE MICROORGANISMS – kind of like probiotics for the soil. I initially got them to help with the compost in my kitchen. It was really starting to stink. This has definitely been helping with that. It seems to produce more heat as well which is kind of interesting.

high mineral content
But the added bonus is that my sprouts are looking really healthy and beautiful. This was a spicy mix (arugula, cress, and daikon). Look at that beautiful purple color. I haven’t seen that before.

tray of sprouts
Here’s is a tray of really healthy some looking sprouts. These little puppies are gonna fuel my comeback. They are. I have big plans for this year, and being sick is NOT one of them. No sir. And guess what else happened this week? My BAND got played on the radio for the first time! Strangely, it wasn’t here in Minneapolis. It was in Berkeley, CA…You know, I always liked that town. 🙂

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Breakthrough


August 1st, 2008


So, for those who haven’t been following my medical drama, I am smack dab in the middle of a major breakthrough. It’s funny. Because often these things don’t necessarily look like that at the time. To recap, I’ve been sick FOREVER! Well, not literally forever, but for 2 years, I’ve been feeling like CRAP and nobody has really had much of an idea why. Well, that’s not exactly accurate. EVERYBODY has a pretty good idea why. But nobody had a good theory as to why my overexposure to toxic gas and sewage was causing the problems I was having. What kinds of problems you ask?

Well, initially I was having a lot of trouble breathing. And when I say a lot of trouble breathing, I mean asthma attacks that would last for days, strangers on the street asking if I was okay, having so much trouble breathing that I couldn’t even cry, and a cough that was so disturbing that it would melt the heart of even the meanest person. I was also having diarrhea. And when I say diarrhea, I mean 15 MONTHS of diarrhea. The kind that makes you wonder if it will ever end. The kind that makes you so exhausted that you literally are unable to get out of bed for a couple days. The kind that you would rather I did not go into further. I was definitely stuck in a rut.


The doctors were out of ideas. I got diagnosed with IBS because they couldn’t find a bacterial cause for it. Out of desperation, I started reading about ANN WIGMORE and I decided to try her plan of GROWING WHEATGRASS.

harvesting

Well, guess what? It worked! The diarrhea finally started getting better! But then, in it’s place I started having having some visits from a strange type of FLU – a really intense, debilitating flu that would come and go. This went on for several months (4 or 5). Nobody had any idea what was happening. I was exhausted. I had to take 3 hours naps every day, and I had no idea why. I was going out of my way to be healthy. I didn’t understand how this could be? It didn’t make sense. I was ready to give up. Then, something wonderful happened…

hospital

My liver died, and I had to go to stay in the hospital for several days.

I know what you’re thinking. What’s wonderful about that? Well, I admit. It didn’t seem wonderful at the time. Not at all. In fact, it was a wee bit unpleasant. I was having trouble breathing because my liver was so swollen, I was barfing up blood, and the pain in my chest was so intense I couldn’t sit up or stand or lie on my back. All I could do was lie in fetal position. But guess what! It was progress! I think my body was purging some really evil things while I was in there.

It turned out that I had a bunch of viral infections. I had hepatitis A and mono. The doctor told me to take it easy for a while to get my strength back. So I went to Seattle to visit some friends. Somewhere in the middle of that trip, something magical started happening…I started to feel good. Really GOOD! I didn’t need to take naps everyday. I started to feel like a normal person again. I started to have ENERGY!

All this time, I had been taking such good care of myself and wondering why nothing seemed to be happening. Then, all of a sudden, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I think I just needed to reach a critical mass where my body had enough support to do what it needed to do.

All I can say is I’m on my way now, baby! I can’t BELIEVE it! I thought it would never happen. I had given up hope. But, the light is starting to shine through me now. That’s for sure. Now, it’s just a matter of re-equilibrating and catching up. I might have to start a new blog soon. One about a really healthy girl! Because the sick one went away.

Well, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some bike riding to catch up on!

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Down, But Not Out


June 8th, 2008

Smoothie Girl

Hola. I’m still here. I still don’t have a computer, but I’m still drinking green smoothies. My boyfriend thought the pineapple was very important for the composition of this picture. This picture was taken a couple days after I was released from the hospital. My most wonderful boyfriend brought me food the whole time I was there so I wouldn’t eat the hospital food.

basil

I am still living in the TINY apartment, but it hasn’t stopped me from developing my green thumb. Here are some pictures from my small window garden. Here I have a basil plant.

mint oregano

I also have a mint and oregano plant going. The smoothie in the pic is the delightful MINT CHOCOLATE variety that SHANNON MARIE developed.

obama

Literally, the first thing I did after I got out of the hospital was go wait in line at the Obama rally where he announced that he was the presumptive nominee. It was so exciting to see. The line to get in was 1.6 miles long. They had to turn away 20k people!! It was truly a historical day.

meditate

The next day, my boyfriend took me to a Twins game. We got the backstage tour. I am home from work for a couple weeks. So I’m definitely making the most of my time.

OH! I have to tell you. I started using the sea minerals that ANTHONY mentioned on his blog a couple weeks back. I’m literally getting twice as much juice from my WHEATGRASS GARDEN. It’s amazing! It deserves it’s own post. I’m going to try some direct comparisons to show you. I’ll keep you posted…

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Unfolding Mysteries


February 12th, 2008

new seeds

Well, I went through my first 3 lbs. of wheatgrass seeds like that. So, I ordered a few more. 10 more lbs. I’m also experimenting with a few more sprout mixes: Beanies, Nick’s Hot Mix, and the Russian Mix. They are all from SPROUTPEOPLE. I’ll let you know what I think of them.

bedhead

The last several days I’ve been seriously under the weather. At first, I thought maybe I was having some sort of detox. But this was pretty intense. It felt like the worst flu I’ve ever had, but somehow not flu-like. It’s amazing what a bright flash can do for pasty skin. I wasn’t really able to get out of bed for a couple days. I’m wondering if this has anything to do with the weird CALL I got from my doctor’s office last week. Time will tell…

cream of asp

In other news, I made this soup last week that turned out really well. Cream of Asparagus. I threw in the asparagus left over from the SUSHI I made. Then, I threw in some water, walnuts, half an avocado, some miso, a little wakame. They went for a spin in the VITAMIX. Then I poured off the soup and added some wakame flakes, asparagus tips, and fresh BUCKWHEAT SPROUTS from the garden….MMM! Pretty tasty. Though I have to admit, in this below zero weather I’m really missing the warm soups.

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Some Observations About Wheatgrass


February 4th, 2008

art of analog

Well, it’s been about a month since I started my experiment with my WINDOW GARDEN. I like how you can see the back of the audio geek magazine in the lower left corner. It says ‘The Art of Analog’.

harvesting

My boyfriend took some pics of me harvesting wheatgrass from the garden. I found that initially I was not cutting the grass close enough to the bottom. So, I wasn’t getting the maximum harvest.

one day harvest

This is about how much grass I harvest from half a tray of wheatgrass. I’ve been doing about a half a tray a day. Ann Wigmore says that it’s important to take at least one day off a week. This somehow makes your body more receptive to it. I guess it’s sort of like how they say you shouldn’t work out every day. You need a day of rest.

one day juice This is the max amount of juice I’ve harvested from a half tray.

shot and a half It works out to be a little less than 2 shots.

grapegginerparsleyapple We’ve made some pretty intense juice concoctions. This one is grapefruit, apple, pear, parsley, ginger, and wheatgrass. WOAH!

lime parsleypear wheatgrass This one is similar but we used lime instead of grapefruit – a little more mild but still pretty punchy.

lime parsley pear grass apple juice

I like how there’s a guitar pick in this picture.

cooking with gas

Now we’re really cooking with gas. I moved all the raw books to another shelf so I could get the maximum output from my window. This is how my garden looked a couple days ago.

garden 2-1

I’ve got 4 trays of wheatgrass going (at various stages – about 2 days apart) and 2 trays of sprouts (one buckwheat and one french garden blend).

wheatgrass

I know what you’re thinking…The all important question: How do I feel? Do I think it’s helping?

Well, it’s interesting. People talk about how you get all this extra energy after a few weeks and get addicted to the feeling. I have definitely been noticing that I’ve been craving more greens. Esp in my smoothies. We made one the other day that was just coconut and fruit – one of my favorite a few months ago. I felt somehow unsatisfied. I wanted something green in it. I’ve definitely noticed a pick me up from drinking it. But I will say that as I’ve mentioned in EARLIER POSTS, I’ve been working through some health issues lately. So I don’t feel like I’ve reached my potential yet. There have been days especially in the last week or so where I’ve gotten glimmers of feeling AMAZING. But they aren’t consistent. I’ve also had days where I’ve felt really tired and nap prone – kind of like I’m trying to work through something. So I guess my answer to the how are you feeling question is that I’ve had little teasers about where this can go, but I get the sense that my body is going to have to work through some things before I can get there. If that makes any sense. It took Ann Wigmore 3 years to work through her chronic diarrhea this way. So, I’m not expecting an overnight miracle here. And I AM really encouraged by the glimmers I’ve seen. If I could get to a point where I felt that way consistently, amazing things would happen. So, I’ll keep moving in that direction. And I’ll keep you posted…

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No More Messing Around


January 19th, 2008

Super Green Smoothie

This is getting serious! Ann Wigmore says you should try to drink a little wheatgrass every day. She says 2 oz. is a good serving. She also says you should take one day off a week. Somehow this makes your body better able to receive it. It starts to take it for granted if it’s every day. I haven’t quite got my wheatgrass factory to where I know when to plant the next tray yet, but I started another one last night.

Red Chard

Look at this BEAUTIFUL red chard I got at the coop this week. So yesterday, I threw that in my smoothie with the wheatgrass, banana, a few dates, a VANILLA POD, a little coconut oil, some cacao butter, and this beautiful thing:look tom

Look at that! I cracked it open all by myself, and I didn’t splinter it into a million pieces. Nice neat cuts. My boyfriend usually does the cutting, but he’s out of town. So I’ve been sharpening my machete skills. I know, I know. ANTHONY says we shouldn’t EAT COCONUTS ANYMORE. I have to say though. That if they did use fungicide on these coconuts, I can’t really tell. Because as you can see there’s a nice patch of fungi on the outside. It looks pretty good on the inside though. So yeah. I’m still torn over the coconut issue. I’ll probably stew on it for a while.

My boyfriend is coming home TOMORROW! Check out this movie he sent me of a WATER DRAGON. I guess they just roam the streets everywhere down there (he’s in Sydney today at SPIEGELTENT). Is that the strangest thing you’ve ever seen?

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New Food Processor and Other Musings


January 18th, 2008

new food processor

Check out the new food processor I got for Christmas! My mom gave it to me. She says she’s generally had good luck with anything GE. The last food processor I had was a steal for $25, but pieces started breaking off of it less than a week in (it was a Black and Decker). The blades and the motor on it were pretty good though. So I kept holding it together. I made it for almost a year like that. But I think my mom is trying to support my healthy changes. For the most part, my family thinks my diet is maybe a little strange, but they are happy that I’ve found something that seems to be helping me deal with DARRYL. This kind of thing doesn’t really run in my family at all. So they’re kind of at a loss as to how to help me.

fp action fp action

Here are some shots of my food processor in action. The blades on this one are really great too. And the design is much better. No small plastic pieces which are easily broken off. This one’s a keeper. Here I am making a cheesecake last night for my friend, Elizabeth. She APPEARED in my blog early on and then disappeared (as she used to live across the hall and moved). But I’ve been trying to get her over here to try some stuff as she has fibromyalgia, and I really think this will help her some.

Wakame Hemp

I made ones of my FAVES the wakame hemp power slaw. I tweaked it a little though as I can’t really just leave recipes how they are. This time I added some red chard, sesame, dulse, and miso in the dressing. And of course, I added some fresh sprouts from my SPROUT GARDEN…buckwheat and some of my spicy mix (which i got from SPROUTPEOPLE – it’s a daikon, arugula, cress mix…YUM!). The sprouts really spiced the salad up in a GOOD WAY.

dinner for e

I also made a VANILLA CHEESECAKE which I’ve made too many times to count. I’ve been tweaking this recipe too – adding some vanilla bean, dates, and almonds in the crust.

Elizabeth was pretty into it. I think I may have a convert. She was looking through recipe books and asking lots of questions. She said the food was ‘restaurant quality’ which kind of caught me off guard. I mean, I’ve been working in the restaurant/catering business for 10 years, but not on the cooking end. My palatte is overly developed, but I don’t have much experience cooking. In fact, I never cooked AT ALL until I got sick and had to go raw. But her little comment planted a little seed in my mind. I might put that seed into the ground and see what sprouts up. 🙂

Egg shelf

There are some other small but revolutionary changes going on in my kitchen. I found a really good use for the egg shelf. I’ve been making lemon/lime water every morning to replace that horrible caffeine habit I had for years. I noticed that I was always digging through my two shelves of produce every morning looking for the most ripe citrus until I had this eureka moment.

the garden

Here’s the SPROUT/WHEATGRASS garden as of yesterday. I’ve almost finished my first tray of wheatgrass. Ann Wigmore says that once you’ve harvested a tray, you can let the grass grow up once more before you compost the mats (the dirts and roots). So, I haven’t exactly figured out how often to space the trays apart yet, but I’m starting another tray today and the second tray seems about ready for harvesting as well. I’m in LOVE with the taste of the sprouts so far. I read somewhere though that officially sprouts are grown in water only and anything you grow in the dirt is a micro green. So, I suppose it’s technically a MICRO GREEN garden. Either way, I’m definitely hooked.

green juice

I’m gonna try to have one of these EVERY DAY. It REALLY makes you feel GREAT. I haven’t quite worked myself of to the 32 oz. CHLOROPHYLL BOMB that Anthony (aka RAW MODEL) swears by, but I’m getting there…

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The Wheatgrass Debacle


January 17th, 2008

grass harvest

cut grass There it is. My first harvest of homegrown wheatgrass. Doesn’t it look lovely? I decided to start with a small batch for my first juicing as I haven’t gotten entirely used to the taste yet. Well, after patiently watching the grass GROW FROM THE SEEDLING STAGE, I was anxious to get started. The juicer seemed easy enough to setup, and I was running late for work. So, I decided to skip the instructional video and just go for it. I gathered up all the parts and assembled them in the seemingly most logical configuration like so:

juicer setup

That looks pretty good, doesn’t it?

NO! I did it WRONG. By the time, I discovered my error I had already spilled green juice all over my kitchen, leaving a very small amount for my first wheatgrass containing juice (satsuma orange, pear, beat, carrot, apple, wheatgrass mixture).

first juice first froth

Not very much wheatgrass, but it made a lovely froth.

the right way

Well, needless to say, as soon as I returned home from work today I got to work figuring out where I went wrong. It all makes so much sense now. Above you see the RIGHT WAY to set up the healthy juicer. Today I tried juicing it with a satsuma orange and pear (all in the Healthy Juicer – yesterday I juiced everything else in my BREVILLE).

Green Alien Blood

I started with the wheatgrass first, and everything was going smashingly. Look at that THICK, green juice. It looks like GREEN ALIEN BLOOD which I find kind of interesting. Ann Wigmore talks in her book about how chlorophyll is kind of like plant blood in that it performs similar functions. She also discussed how closely the molecular structure of a chlorophyll molecule resembled a hemoglobin molecule. They are almost identical except that hemoglobin is built around an iron molecule, and chlorophyll is built around magnesium. They say that because they are so similar it’s very easy for your body to convert the chlorophyll ESP if you’re eating foods rich in iron (like say BUCKWHEAT SPROUTS, for example!).

wheatgrass pear juice

Anyway, despite my success with the wheatgrass, I found that the breville was FAR superior at juicing other kinds of fruits. When I put the pear slices in, the hopper got backed up pretty fast. Thus, I wasn’t able to juice all the pears slices I had prepared. Though they made a yummy snack. I have to say that I REALLY like the wheatgrass pear juice combo. The pear really takes the edge off the wheatgrass. It’s somehow softer and easier to take. I also didn’t notice the aftertaste really. So I think I might be making that again (though maybe in separate juicers). I feel REALLY GOOD right now. Definitely a kick start. We are starting this green year off on the right track!

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Smoothie Fixation


January 14th, 2008

Bunny Spice

I’ve been experimenting with some smoothies this week. I usually do some variation of a coconut smoothie in the morning. But my boyfriend is on tour down under, and he’s the one who really excels at opening the coconuts. So, I’ve been spreading my wings. This is one I tried from RAW FOOD REAL WORLD that was really fantastic. It’s called Bunny Spice. It’s basically NUT MILK, carrot/ginger JUICE, banana, and cinnamon. WOW. It’s really amazing. It’s really sweet, but I didn’t really add any sweetener (other than what was in the nut milk). It just makes you realize how sweet carrots are. You just don’t notice it as much in that context. I felt really strong that day too. Carrots are powerhouses of energy.

blue sunset

I also tried this lovely concoction called the Blue Sunset. This one cost me an arm and a leg as it’s pretty tropical and it’s kind of the middle of winter, but man was it yummy. I actually made the two person batch and had no trouble finishing 2 1/2 pint glasses of this all to myself. I was drinking it in honor of my boyfriend who sent me this lovely pic from New Zealand.

Karekare beach

This is Karekare beach. Can you believe that?! You would splurge too, wouldn’t you?

Finally, here’s an update on my developing URBAN GARDEN.

Sprout Update

The sprouts are starting to shed their hulls all over the place. It’s so interesting how they pop off completely clean. No energy is wasted. Our modern society could learn a lesson or two from these little guys.

grass update

The wheatgrass looks so amazingly healthy! Not bad for a first try, eh?

Time to start thinking of recipes…

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