Tag: nutrition

Instant Comfort

I tried another Instant Pot recipe, Healthy Instant Pot Mac and Cheese from The Girl on the Bloor.

The ”healthy” component of the dish is broccoli. You could add other greens to up your veggie game. The recipe called for regular pasta. I wanted to use whole wheat, but I found none at Walmart. I used the Colby/Monterey Jack cheese I already had in the fridge instead of the white cheddar on the ingredient list.

Overall, the cooking was quick and easy, and I got a little more comfortable with my Instant Pot.

The flavor wasn’t spectacular, but it tasted good and did feel like comfort food. Switching to a tastier cheese might improve the flavor.

I’m liking the Instant Pot more and more. It’s helping me to make healthier food choices for myself. For me, better eating means less trouble with those everyday MS symptoms like fatigue and the dreaded ”brain fog.”

What tricks do you use to make healthy eating happen?

Advertisements

Supermarket Meal Kit

I’ve been intrigued by the meal kit services that cropped up a few years ago. I want to try them, but I’m a little scared for some reason. Also, they’re not cheap.

When I saw this Stouffer’s family meal kit in Kroger’s frozen food section, I decided it would be worth a try.

The box contains packaged chicken pieces, broccoli, a rice and quinoa mixture, and some sauce. You start by boiling water in a pan. You’ll use the hot water to melt the frozen sauce.

Illustration of saucepan

While the water is boiling you heat some oil in a skillet to cook the chicken.

Illustration of skillet

You’ll heat the quinoa mix and broccoli on a plate in the microwave while the other stuff is cooking.

Illustration of microwave oven

Put the chicken, the sauce, and the broccoli together and serve the quinoa on the side.

Plated meal

Conclusions

  • Easy to prepare
  • Not too pricey
  • Tasty
  • Healthy
  • Would be good to cook for a small dinner party

I’m glad I tried this meal kit and I will definitely buy it again. I imagine the offerings from Blue Apron and the like are more flavorful since they included herbs, spices, and other fancy food elements. But if you don’t want to spend the extra money, and do a little more work, this kit might be the next best thing.

Nutrition information
Find nutrition info here

Finding a way

Taking time for fitness

For me, exercising as soon as I get home from work is the way to go. I can do something at home or go use the eqiupment at Planet Fitness. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I schedule the workout before my Copaxone injection. It’s a system that works. Even if I’m feeling a little fatigued or under-the-weather, I can at least get on the floor and do some stretching. I need to lose about 35 pounds and I plan to lose it the way I gained it, slowly. My eating habits are pretty good, but I’m not as active as I need to be. If I don’t make progress in the next couple of months, I’ll have the doctor check my thyroid function. I’m pretty sure it’s a lifestyle problem and not hormones.

In other food news

I got an Instant Pot for Christmas. Now I have to learn how to use it and find recipes that don’t call for 15 ingredients.

Art for sanity

I want to revisit art journaling this year. The book I’m altering is turning into an art journal. I had a thought that I could turn books into journals and sell them on Etsy.

I don’t like how messy the art journal process is. Things would be so much easier if I could quit my job and do art and jewelry full-time. That is something to put on the vision board. That’s another to-do!

I could focus more on digital art, but I like working with real objects. I want to add digital scrapbook paper and embellishments to my Etsy inventory. More to-dos!

Paint on a book page

Let’s give this year a try

It’s 2017 and I’m still here, but I sometimes feel like I’m running out of time. The best course of action would be to form a plan. Can I make a plan without the plan itself becoming my primary focus? Or, is that the point? They say that it’s the journey and not the destination, don’t they? Oh, THEY are wise.

Resolve

I gave up on making New Year’s resolution. They set you up for failure. I do however, want to make some changes in my life this year. I have MS, so taking care of my physical and mental health should be my number one priority. That means making more time for exercise, and to do that I will need to put my needs before my father’s needs. Taking time to cook healthy meals is another top priority. Next on the list is my creative practice. I want to continue to make lots of art and jewelry. I want to start selling that art and jewelry. As the list grows, I begin to worry that I won’t be able to manage it all. I want to give up before I start.

That paragraph looked like a bunch of New Year’s resolutions to me. I think it will help if I blog everyday. I know, that’s another item added to the list, but I won’t achieve anything if I don’t keep reaching. This year, I’m taking a journey, and I’ll blog about. That’s the ticket!

sketch
Beginnings of a mixed media work.

Work work and food

I worked a fair amount of hours last week. I finished a blog post about personal digital archiving and started one on digital painting. I go to work with the mindset that I am a writer. Then I sit down and write. The topics I write about require some research, and I feel a little guilty when I’m searching the Web and not writing, but that’s part of the process.

This week, I want to finish the latest blog post. I also want to learn something that I can make a video tutorial about.   Those are my work goals.

In my personal life, I want to write more in my real paper notebook. I think this will help to alleviate my depression and anxiety. I recently read yet another article about how journaling is a good way to deal with depression. I’ve got stuff I need to say that I don’t want to share with the world.

Another personal goal is about food. I have to improve my diet. I eat vegetables most days, but I’m not getting anywhere near the recommended five per day. I think that I have to eat well so that MS doesn’t get the better of me. There are recipes I want to try, but the idea of going to the grocery store and getting the ingredients stops me. I considered trying Blue Apron, but it’s too expensive for my budget. What I think I can do is work with the food I have at home. That seems reasonable.

Illustration-Carrot, Broccoli, Red Pepper

 

Health and Heredity and Habits

I’m like my father in many ways, and not like him in many ways too. We both like taking photographs, listening to audiobooks, eating chocolate, watching British television, and learning. I look like him, although not as much as I did when I was little. As I got older I began to look more like a combination of my father and my mother. I did not inherit my dad’s affinity for math. If I had, I’m sure I’d be a successful computer programmer today. I’ve found that math problems can bring me to the verge of a panic attack.

Dad turned 77 in April and he has some health problems that I don’t want to inherit. I just turned 42, and I know it’s time to start taking better care of myself so that I won’t run into the kinds of problems he’s having when I’m in my 60s and 70s.

It’s all about healthy habits. I believe that if your healthy habits outnumber your less healthy ones, you can come out ahead. I try and keep up with the latest research on nutrition and fitness. I don’t read scholarly journals, but I do obtain information from credible sources like WebMD, The Nutrition Diva, and The American Council on Exercise (ACE). I’ve started filing away useful health and fitness information on Pinterest pin boards. I’ve got one called Fit ‘n Happy, that features some workout routines, and exercises you can do using elastic bands. I really want to start making better use of my elastic bands since I know strength training is key to aging well.

Fit 'n Happy Pinterest Board
Fit ‘n Happy Pinterest Board

My other health-related pin board, Eat Your Veggies, contains recipes for preparing vegetables. The dream is that one day I will prop my iPad on the kitchen counter and make some of these dishes.  I might have done this once, I need to do it more often.  I’ve also been using Evernote Food to collect healthy recipes. Sometimes I think it’s more about the technology than anything else.

Eat Your Veggies pin board
Eat Your Veggies pin board

I’ll talk more about this in another post. Maybe I’ll report that I’ve developed a new healthy habit.