Thistle Dew Nutrition

Ramblings from a "Simpler" and perpertual student of natural health, with a strong focus on how to eat well to prevent chronic diseases.

My Photo
Location: Saugatuck, Michigan, United States


Tuesday, December 27, 2005


There are 10 people in my office. This holiday season, like so many in the past, we were inundated with food baskets and huge boxes of chocolates. On December 23rd there were no less than 2 baskets full of “processed cheese spreads”, crackers, cookies, candies, grossly over Sulphated meats in different shapes and sizes, among other tidbits; only one large jar of mixed nuts; and there were five large boxes of chocolates. Five. Large. Boxes. And to my hips’ dismay the biggest one was DARK chocolate from BELGIUM. All this for 10 people.

Lord Help Me.

So Christmas Eve dinner is always spent at my brother-in-law’s house, and while talking on the phone to his wife Kay she asked me if I thought it would be OK if she made Belgium Waffles for dinner that night. (What’s with the Belgium thing again?) “Sounds great!” came out of my mouth before I could stop it. So after consulting my bathroom scale I asked her if I could “do” Christmas Eve Lunch, so that I could make something a little healthier for us to eat. Everyone came to my house for lunch.

I got up early and made home made egg-bread sticks and soup. Beef stew with about a dozen fresh veggie in it including potatoes, onions, garlic, summer squash, mushrooms, beets, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, carrots spices and one bay leaf. I may be missing an item or two. Everyone loved it, and when my nephew asked “what’s this?” it was discovered that beets won’t actually kill him.

Then a few hours later we were gorging on hot artichoke-spinach-cheese-dip, tomato aspic, and Belgium waffles with our choice of strawberries, cherries, blueberries, or a tropical mix that Kay came up with. Denise made a Bailey’s Irish Cream cheese cake from scratch for desert, and we all got comfortably sleepy.

The next day at 2:00 was the typical Turkey and Ham and pot luck dinner at the out-law’s house. Great fun, too many people, and everyone had seconds and thirds.

Ron and I skipped breakfast Monday morning and had breakfast for lunch out with a friend. When Ron came home later last night for dinner I had taken all of the left over raw veggies and threw them on top of a green salad along with hearts of palm and black olives. I chopped up some potatoes and leeks and a few of the lighter colored veggies and made my Potato Leek soup (see recipes page). Ronnie just “maowed” on the salad, mumbling something around the summer squash about how great it was, then congratulated me on the soup and thanked me for serving it hot and lumpy (not cold and pureed the way the French do it) just the way he likes it.

I think we were both deprived of some good old fashioned simple veggies. I’ve had enough rich food to last me a month. Oh goodie! Here come New Year’s Eve! Ugh!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Gift Certificates

Yeah for me! I sold 3 gift certificates for one-hour massages so far this year for Christmas presents. I already have one appointment for the day after Christmas, and a fourth person who introduced me to his wife a “That lady who does massages!” I think he was hinting to her about a Christmas gift too.

My “master plan” is to use the more generally acceptable practice of giving massages to get people into my house, then through the honest Q and A phase about health, illness, injury and contraindications involved before each massage perhaps introduce them to the idea of coming to me as a Naturopath.

Many people in the general public are comfortable with the idea of massage and understand what it offers. Once they are on the table getting a massage the topic of their health often comes up. At which point in time I can suggest the options available for prevention and the possible causes to these health problems. I hope to have a shelf in my massage room/library with Luyties homeopathic medicines and Standard Process and MediHerb products on it. This should also be a good conversation starter.

I’m a salesman in my “day job” and I hate the pushy sales people that I refer to as “used car salesmen”. I don’t like the idea of promoting myself, and I think that this is a very good way to go around that.

Monday, December 12, 2005


Due to a large number of “Spam” comments on my blog I thought it best to turn on an anti-spam word verification step for my commenters. I feel rotten about this, especially since most of my comments come from my two best friends, and I truly love getting comments from them, and I truly don’t want to make it more difficult for them, but what’s a girl to do?

Sunday, December 04, 2005

A New-Fangled Diet Plan

Here’s a new idea for a diet plan: Eat slower.

Yes, it’s that simple. Almost without exception all of the people that I’ve known in my life who have “weight problems” eat fast. And by fast I mean instantly. They sit down to eat (or stand, or drive, or lay on the couch) with one thing in mind; applying food to their faces. They don’t enjoy the flavor of the food, or the conversation of friends, relatives, or co-workers. They don’t enjoy their surroundings, or the music playing, or the program on T.V.

Even if you’re eating at your desk at work you can eat slowly. Force yourself to do it. Take a bite and read today’s post at your favorite Blog. Take another bite and click on Read it for a while and chuckle. You can at least grin while chewing. I even laughed up green tea through my nose while reading one of his posts, so be careful! Stop eating for a few minutes and click on She’ll be your best friend in four paragraphs. Eat a few more bites and look out a window. Stop eating while writing down your shopping list on a post-it note. Take a few more bites…. You get the idea.

When you eat fast:
* You can get much more food into your stomach before your brain knows that it’s full.
* It puts a lot of stress on your stomach, gallbladder, liver, kidneys, and pancreas.
* Although you may disagree with the following statement, you can NOT be enjoying the actual food. You might be enjoying the carbohydrate “high” you can get from eating this quickly, but I’ve watched my Grandpa eat so fast that there was no possible way that he could even taste his food.
* Talking and laughing are excellent added ingredients to food. They add oxygen to the food in your stomach and actually help the digestion process.
* Although about 80% of the people in the world will get a hiatal hernia in their lifetimes, it is more likely that you will get one, and get it earlier in your lifetime, if you eat too quickly. (Note to self: post on hiatal hernias later).

When you eat slowly:
* Your stomach and all of its corresponding organs have time to process the food correctly.
* You assimilate more of the nutrients in the food.
* Your pancreas can process the sugars and carbohydrates more efficiently, and you are less likely to get Type II Diabetes.
* With just a few bites of food in your stomach your sympathetic nervous system can tell your brain it’s no longer hungry within 5 or so minutes. This is why many “diet” pills work best when taken 30 minutes before a meal. (I don’t think any diet pills will ever help anyone lose weight long term.)
* You can truly enjoy the flavors, textures, surroundings of each meal. Enjoy SOMETHING while you are eating, which is why the experts say to not eat in your car (at least play nice music) or while watching the T.V. news (watch “Sunrise Earth” on cable if you can).

Garfield the Cat once said “Diet is one letter away from Die”. Well I say “Fast is one letter away from Fat”.

And one last note: Be thankful. I don’t care if you say a prayer before each meal, but at least be grateful for the food in front of you. Even if it’s a Whopper value meal, be grateful for the life of the cow that the beef came from; be grateful for the perfect amount of salt of the French fries (or those disgustingly wonderful onion rings!); be thankful for the sweet nectar of the cola washing down the sesame seeds; be thankful for the little bit of vegetable matter that makes us justify the whole meal as not a total loss of health food dignity.