Here’s an update on Terreeia’s health journey and a few of our favorite healing recipes for you to try.
Hey aren’t my countertop totally current with the terrazzo look 🙂
Today I’m sharing an update on how Terreeia is doing on her new healing plan.
On my Instagram stories, I’ll often take a picture of the elaborate Buddha bowls that Terreeia makes for our meals and I’ve been getting lots of requests for recipes, so today I’m posting a few!
For those of you who are new to this blog, Terreeia is my wife.
Twenty years ago, she had an adrenal crash when she was a workaholic. She was diagnosed with hypo- thyroid, gained 50 pounds in three months, and slowly over the years the weight crept up higher.
My wife does not overeat, she does not snack, she doesn’t even like sugar and usually has 3 healthy meals per day. As I mentioned in my last update, over the years she tried different diets to lose the weight, she also visited many doctors and specialists looking for the right thyroid medication that would take off the weight and be back to where she had been all her life. Nothing worked.
She even hired a personal trainer 6 days a week who said “You have a low heart rate and will not lose this weight, so the best we can do is have you be more fit”. At the same time, her pain level just got worse and worse.
She developed Hashimoto’s Disease, inflammation, arthritis, hives, high blood pressure, her right foot was so inflamed, it would wake her up in the middle of the night throbbing in pain and there were only two pairs of shoes she could wear. Now with arthritis in both knees she needs a full knee replacement, and doctors say she needs to take the weight off in order to operate. Did you know one pound equals 10 pounds of pressure on your knees! Who knew?
Changing the way we eat is hard. But if you’re in enough pain, you get to the point where you’re willing to try anything.
To date she has lost 53 pounds in 5 months and is still going. Terreeia says she never wants to see an X in her sizes ever again and doesn’t even want to buy any new clothes until she’s there.
Food is Medicine
Terreeia has mentally committed to one year of 100% focus on health. Before she puts anything into her mouth, she asks herself “Is this medicine?”. Otherwise, she won’t eat it. No coffee, no alcohol, no meat, no dairy, no gluten, no SOS (sugar, oil or salt), and did I mention she’s off her blood pressure medication? It’s back to normal with this eating plan.
To elaborate on why no oil, it’s because oils are processed, which means they’re not healthy (not a whole food). For her program, she’s not eating anything processed, the only oil she eats are natural oils that are found in avocado, coconut milk, blended sesame seed (tahini). I think no sugar goes without saying.
What Terreeia is doing is hard. There’s no doubt about it. But want to know the secret?
First she made a choice to change, then got into action and then fully immersed herself in the plan of healing and connecting mind and body.
Every day, she’s fully immersed in this conversation called food is medicine. And, she knows in order to achieve optimum health and maintain her new weight she’ll eat some version of a whole food diet forever.
She falls asleep listening to meditations, she is constantly in a new online course learning more about whole food eating with other health experts.
And although that might seem like the worst thing ever to those of us without these health issues, when you start eating this way, your body stops craving all the bad food that isn’t good for you anyway.
The other day she told me one of the lessons in the course she’s in, was about salt. Put a bowl of unsalted nuts vs. salted nuts beside you, how many unsalted nuts would you eat compared to salted?
Salt and sugar is in so much of our food, especially packaged food, and it’s designed that way because it makes you immediately want MORE.
That’s why you can never eat just one chip!
But the good news is that Terreeia is a gourmet cook and can make anything taste delicious. She doesn’t see things as ‘restricted’ or ‘missing’ but rather by removing toxins and poisons in food she is giving her body a chance to heal and that motivates her every day.
I’m not personally trying to be on any kind of plan, but because Terreeia is the cook, and I’m eating what she’s eating, I have also lost weight to the point where my clothes fit me better than they’ve fit in years! I’m not down a size (and I’m not trying to be, eeeek I’d have to buy a whole new wardrobe), but my size 8 clothes are looking good!
We have a fenced off vegetable garden that is Terreeia’s domain. The flowers and shrubs in the rest of the garden, are mine.
Terreeia loves her vegetable garden! The first year (in 2013, when we planted our vegetable garden) she tried square foot gardening (above), which is when our vegetables looked the lushest.
Photos by Macy Yap Photography
When Terreeia makes pasta, her marinara sauces so good, I always go back for seconds. Ever noticed you always want more pasta? That’s because there isn’t a lot of nutrients in it, so while your stomach might be full, your body is still hungry.
Today, I’m sharing some dressings and sauces Terreeia uses in her super creative Buddha bowls. And it’s interesting but I never look for seconds after I’ve finished one of these bowls.
Here’s (below) what some of them look like:
The basic ingredients of a buddha bowl is a grain, a green and a bean and it’s usually accompanied by a tasty dressing. Here’s a good recap of how to assemble one.
This Buddha dressing (from Fresh Start) is so good, everyone who comes over, immediately wants the recipe (this makes 3 cups)
1/3 cup tamari
1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/3 cup water
2 cloves of garlic
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1 1/2 cup vegetable oil (Terreeia doesn’t add oil, so instead she adds extra water, 1/2 cup – 1 cup, experiment and add to taste)
2 tbsp tahini
Add all ingredients to your Vitamix and blend until it’s smooth and creamy.
Garlic Scape or Basil Pesto
This August when Terreeia’s garlic matured and she had garlic scapes (above), she made a pesto out of it and then added it to spiralled zucchini, which she would add to organic buckwheat soba noodles (instead of spaghetti). It was the easiest meal and so good:
To be clear, on her plan, she’s not eating the pesto (because of the oil) she makes it for me.
Terreeia freezes her basil pesto in a shallow Tupperware container. You can even freeze the in ice cube trays, then take them out when they are frozen and transfer them into freezer bags. Talk about instant (and healthy) pasta sauce.
In a food processor:
2 cups packed fresh basil leaves (chopped garlic scapes)
2 cloves garlic roughly chopped
1/3 cup pine nuts, walnuts, almonds or pecans
1/2 cup virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
Terreeia (who always thought she was part Italian) would say to do this all with a mortar and pestle. However a food processor will do. Drizzle the oil in after everything else is blended.
Coconut Cream Curry
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 white onion or shallot
2 tbsp ginger, minced (thumb size)
2-3 tbsp yellow curry powder or pesto (red curry paste is fine)
1 tbsp Tamari or Aminos (Bragg or coconut)
1 Tsp Ground Turmeric
2 cans Coconut Milk
1 tbsp Maple Syrup or Sugar to Taste
1/4 tsp salt to taste
1-2 tbsp coconut oil or your favourite oil – use water if avoiding oil
Heat pan, add oil, ginger, garlic, onion, saute and stir. Add curry powder or paste , cook 2-3 minutes then add maple syrup and coconut milk.
These are sauces you can add to anything, you can even cook vegetables in the curry sauce.
Zhoug (this is spicy but so good)
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp Cardamon powder
1 tsp red dry chili
5 garlic cloves
1 cup (handful) of parsley
1 cup (handful) cilantro
1/2 cup olive oil
Options, nuts or a pinch of clove
Terreeia will often spread this on the lentil flatbread she makes.
It’s pretty wonderful to have a wife who is almost pain free, she’s a happier gal to be around these days, a happy wife is truly a happy life 🙂
One more thing, Terreeia hangs out at these sites which have been really helpful in her health journey:
This site started the no SOS conversation.
This is one of Terreeia’s favourite whole food sites
Let us know if you have any questions about what we talked about, Terreeia will answer them in the comments below.
Thanks so much for being such a supportive community! I love my readers 🙂
PS. Terreeia and I will be doing a live demonstration, Cooking with Terreeia, on her Instagram this Wednesday at 4:00 pm PST time. Follow her here to be updated.