Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The 10 Dirtiest Foods You're Eating

Think you have the latest bug going around or that your Fibro IBS symptoms are causing you grief? Your stomach might be telling you something completely different:


The 10 Dirtiest Foods You're Eating


Stay fabulous!
Love and friendship,

Kimberley

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Food Labels and the Missing Fine Print

A rather interesting article was in the local Hartford Courant today.  The article was written by Consumer Reports and explained that insects and toxins are allowed in our food. Shop Smart, the shopping magazine from the publisher of Consumer Reports just recently announced some interesting finds that food labels won't contain.  Here is a list of those findings:

Can I Get a Little More Protein With That?
The Food and Drug Administration will allow companies that grow, harvest, and process food a little leeway when it comes to bugs and other crawling critters.  They deem this as naturally occurring defects.  This means that a certain amount of full and partial bugs can be added for that extra protein kick, as well as a few rodent hairs mixed in for flavor.  YUMMY!

Obviously, if bugs disgust you as much as they do me, return the product if you happen to find one.  I remember seeing a few live ones inside a loaf of bread while in line at the grocer.  I kindly let the cashier know that I didn't want the extra protein and he got me a bug-free version before I left. 

Your Not Seeing Double

It is quite possible that you may be consuming a clone without knowing it because the FDA doesn't require labels on products that contain genetically engineered plant material or meat for the most part.  It also doesn't require it on milk from cloned animals.

Products that are widely sold under this category are corn, soybeans, canola, and cotton.  Organic is the best option if you want to avoid seeing double here.

You Are What You Eat

It is possible that the chicken or steak you carefully picked out from your grocer's meat case is full of it.  Some animals on our farms today are consuming other animals, bones, feathers, and you guessed it, waste.  Those labels that say no additives, no antibiotics, no hormones, or no steroids might be full of it too because those statements cannot be verified, so the findings state.

The best option here is to buy organic.  I know the price of organic meat is crazily through the roof, but believe me when I tell you-- there is a difference and you can taste it.  I just started to buy organic meats and I will add a post in the near future on tips to stretch your dollar when it comes to buying them.

How Sweet, Fresh Meat-- NOT!

Consumers have been fooled into thinking that beef should be red and that salmon should be bright pink because that means it's fresh, when in fact, a gas or additive is packaged with it allowing the meat product to look fresh for a month or more.  I don't think I have to worry about Freddy coming for me because that beef I'm about to cook just might resurrect itself.  Talk about your scary movies-- YIKES!  All kidding aside, most of the oxygen in the packaged meats is replaced with other gases, including carbon monoxide.

The only way to avoid this problem is to ask your grocer if their meats happen to be packed with carbon monoxide.  And don't forget-- this happens with produce too.  You can avoid it there if you buy local or shop your frozen foods section.

Stay fabulous!
Love and friendship,

Kimberley

Saturday, June 11, 2011

The Elimination Diet

I'm a big wrestling fan and I'm thinking about the "Elimination Chamber" matches from the WWE as we speak.  In wrestling, you have a winner and a loser and usually a good guy and a bad one.  Sometimes the bad guy wins because he's sneaky and we hate that, but that's the appeal of wrestling.

Whether you are a fan or not of wrestling, most people who suffer from fibro can hate elimination when it comes to diets because we have the good and the bad angel speaking to us.  We fibro sufferers who have been around the block know that these diets exist to help us eliminate the bad guys from our diets.  Many will find, like I did, that processed food is a major culprit.  Some will see gluten as a problem, and others are left in the dark.

My post today is to those people still looking.  Please know that an Elimination Diet is still a good idea-- even if you have a demon and angel complex because you can find out a lot about your body.  The best thing to remember is that once you have ruled out a food as being a target, you CAN and SHOULD reintroduce it back into your diet.

Some fibro sufferers I've talked to have steered clear of certain foods just because they know most patients have a problem with a particular food and this is not a good practice.  If you crave something in your diet, you need it.

Now, some people may disagree with me saying she's crazy!  All Fibro people need to avoid gluten and processed and, fill in the blank here.  And the answer to that is simple, no, I'm not crazy.  People are as different as this disease is and not everyone is sensitive to the same things.

My advice is to make sure you do an elimination diet often (at least once a year) and find your culprits.  Make sure you know what makes you feel good and bad as far as food and activity go and get yourself on a good multi-vitamin.

Stay fabulous,
Love and friendship,

Kimberley

Friday, June 10, 2011

Fibro and Fabulous, Amazon, and the State of Connecticut

To My Dear Readers,

The governor of the state of Connecticut has passed an extra tax law here and despite my views of the greed of today, I have no choice but to comply.  You all know that I have dedicated my life to helping all of you feel fabulous as best as I can.  I do this out of my own pocket.  I don't get any type of compensation for what I do, and as a matter of fact, I don't even break even for my published books on this subject.  Most authors of today don't see a profit, we just write because we love it.

Having said that, I will continue to the best of my ability, to offer as much information on Fibromyalgia as I can to all of you as long as I can afford it.  I don't need to let any of you know that the economy has hit me harshly because all of you feel the pinch too.  What I do need you to know is that this blog will be getting a huge makeover.  I am removing all Amazon ads as per Connecticut law, and I may have to remove Adsense ads as well.  Below is the lovely letter I received from Amazon at 6 this morning:

Hello,
For well over a decade, the Amazon Associates Program has worked with thousands of Connecticut residents. Unfortunately, the budget signed by Governor Malloy contains a sales tax provision that compels us to terminate this program for Connecticut-based participants effective immediately. It specifically imposes the collection of taxes from consumers on sales by online retailers - including but not limited to those referred by Connecticut-based affiliates like you - even if those retailers have no physical presence in the state.
We opposed this new tax law because it is unconstitutional and counterproductive. It was supported by big-box retailers, most of which are based outside Connecticut, that seek to harm the affiliate advertising programs of their competitors. Similar legislation in other states has led to job and income losses, and little, if any, new tax revenue. We deeply regret that we must take this action.
As a result of the new law, contracts with all Connecticut residents participating in the Amazon Associates Program will be terminated today, June 10, 2011. Those Connecticut residents will no longer receive advertising fees for sales referred to Amazon.com , Endless.com , MYHABIT.COM or SmallParts.com . Please be assured that all qualifying advertising fees earned on or before today, June 10, 2011, will be processed and paid in full in accordance with the regular payment schedule.
You are receiving this email because our records indicate that you are a resident of Connecticut. If you are not currently a resident of Connecticut, or if you are relocating to another state in the near future, you can manage the details of your Associates account here . And if you relocate to another state after June 10, 2011, please contact us for reinstatement into the Amazon Associates Program.
To avoid confusion, we would like to clarify that this development will only impact our ability to offer the Associates Program to Connecticut residents and will not affect their ability to purchase from www.amazon.com .
We have enjoyed working with you and other Connecticut-based participants in the Amazon Associates Program and, if this situation is rectified, would very much welcome the opportunity to re-open our Associates Program to Connecticut residents.
Regards,
The Amazon Associates Team

I do not, nor will I recommend anything from Amazon anymore, and it's not because I don't like Amazon, it's because I don't want any of you to pay more money for your products just because I live in a greedy state.  And why do I call it greedy?  Well, that's simple.  Not more than 2 or 3 years ago, this state had a surplus of money due to over taxing and now ALL of that money is gone due to overspending.  I'm all for helping people out and giving them many beneficial services that this state provides, but if I have to operate my indie author business at a loss and pinch every penny, than I think this state should too.

Please keep me in your thoughts as I try to find other ways of income to not only keep this site running, but my publishing business too.  Also, please be patient with me while I redesign my site.  I have a lot of family issues to contend with.  My mom, who is the last stages of Alzheimer's, and my grandmother, who is disabled, require a ton of care from me.

And if you feel compelled to help keep this site going, please do so by recommending it, as well as my books to as many people and bookstores as you can.  It would be much appreciated, because word of mouth is really worth its weight in gold.

Stay fabulous!
Love and friendship,

Kimberley

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Fibro Fog: The Bad and the Ugly of Fibromyalgia

I knew in the beginning where I'd go with this post but somehow the words are becoming a bit of a blur.  My thoughts are in muddled water, slipping through the dried cracks of the earth I refer to as my brain.  Some thoughts have laid there so long that they've dried up in a desert like fashion, hoping and praying for rain.  Still, I know I wanted to express my thoughts about fibro fog and how it's grip takes hold on my day to day living, but I just can't put my finger on the words that I wanted to express.

I think you know what I mean when I say fibro fog, right?  It's that thing that keeps me and every other sufferer who has this symptom from thinking straight.  It can send one into spirals that swirl in every direction, and unfortunately for me, they tend to go downward when I'm faced with the fact that my focus isn't as clear as it needs to be.

Fibro fog is a horrible symptom of fibromyalgia.  It can make you feel depressed, crazy, and in your darkest hours, even feel dumb.  I know I've felt dumb.  I try to express myself and then boom-- my fog hits and there's the wall and all forms of communication have turned to mush.  Dear friends of mine have uttered the heart ripping phrase, your roots are showing, and I'd laugh it off trying to conceal the gut wrenching thoughts going through my head.  I was the supposed sensible brunette, as my mother put it.  I should never, as far as she was concerned, be compared to a blonde stereotype.

It's frustrating when you can't get your point across, but I find that much better to deal with as opposed to not being able to drive.  Yes, there are times when I'm so uncomfortable with my fog that I don't drive.  I know I say you should always try to look at the positive side of things and work through your illness.

But I wouldn't be a good blogger if I didn't tell you that even I say when.  Driving is, and has always been a when with me.  I get very emotional when it comes to driving.  A car is like a weapon, was drilled into me in the all too literal sense.  When I was beginning my driving lessons, a friend of mine, who was under the influence, died at the wheel when he was 16.  It was a life changing experience for me and I vowed to try and make safe rides home for all of my friends, however, I failed in college when two other friends fell asleep at the wheel. To this day, I still feel responsible, even though I know that I've done everything humanly possible to help.

None of these incidences clearly have anything to do with my illness.  Fibro DOES NOT cause stupidity or sleepiness during college.  I want to make that totally clear-- even with Goggle.  But the impact of what CAN happen still stings my ears.  Yes, I have an illness, but I sometimes can't get to that appointment even if I want to due to my fear of fog.

Some may say that I should just get over it because everyone experiences a momentary lapse of reason, but I know better.  This is a very real symptom and gosh darn it, I could hurt someone.  Learning the signs has helped me to know when to say when.

  1. Over thinking 
  2. Deep thoughts
  3. Forgetfullness
  4. Short term memory loss
These are all signs of fibro fog and you should take heed to them when you are experiencing a flare.  Fog comes during every flare of mine as of late and concentration has been hard.  I can't tell you how many times I've had to rewrite my blogs before I've posted-- it's the God's honest truth.  It's been tough.

But I need you to know that it can be overcome or reworked.  Driving is always a touchy subject with people.  We Americans really have no choice but to use an automobile for transportation, and usually we are the ones driving ourselves everywhere.  It's hard sometimes to keep up with the non-ill, however, I've developed a mantra, no destination is worth reaching if you can't come up with the toll.  I live with that every day.

Stay fabulous,
Love friendship,

Kimberley

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