Planning My Way Out of a Hole

No CT yesterday.  I even iced the tub and then didn’t get in.  I felt worn out.  I think I was having a detox reaction to the colder-than-usual bath the night before.  I was also feeling moody, tired, and a little like I might be getting a cold.  So no CT.  Instead I ate dairy, drank alcohol, and did other silly things I shouldn’t do.  Oh well, back on track today, as best I can.  I’m going to my parent’s house for the night, which will make things a little challenging.  So no CT again today.  Back to the tub on Sunday.

I was feeling discouraged yesterday.  Detox and the end of my period may explain my poor mood.  Still, I’m going to need to see more results soon.  I think what I need is a plan.  Things feel open ended and unsettled right now.

Dr. Kruse visited my blog and recommended CT and lifting weights.  Specifically, he said, “The answer is simple……embrace the Cold and begin to lift heavy things with low low reps. Real heavy things.”   I’m doing the CT and I’m not lifting weights yet.  I can’t really complain until I take the advice I’ve been given.  So that’s task #1.  Get the weight lifting ball rolling.  That will happen this weekend.  I have plenty of time to learn to do this while on the road today, and I’ll implement it Sunday when I get home.

Task #2:  Keep doing the Leptin Reset and CT until….when?  Well, I think I’ll do them for another month…let’s say till the end of July.  Then I’ll have 3 months of cold baths under my belt.  At that point I’m going to take a few weeks off from the CT so I’m not detoxing, and then I’m going to get more testing done.  Testing will take about a few weeks, to make sure things are timed properly.  My cycle is not regular right now so I can’t plan ahead with that.  I’ll just have to make sure the hormone tests are done on the correct day of my cycle, whenever that is that month. At this point I’ll have gone 2 months with no progesterone supplementation, so hopefully things will have normalized and I can get a good sense of where I’m at naturally.

The tests I’d like to get are a lipid panel including a VAP test, hormone panel, thyroid panel, Vitamin D, and HS-CRP, and cortisol testing (4x/day).  All of this will be expensive, considering my doc is not at all helpful in this respect.  I asked her at one point for the VAP test and I think she didn’t know what it was.  She nodded like she was ordering it, but then it didn’t get ordered.

Have to go.  The road calls.

Paleo Bread…and Doubt

I went a little colder with the CT last night to see if I could get numbed up again, which used to feel really good.  So it was 46 deg F for 35 minutes.  It didn’t feel significantly different getting in, and definitely felt better, longer.  I could have stayed in longer.  It was a 4 out of 5 (5 is when I’m practically laughing it feels so good).  It did take longer to warm up though – I’d guess about 15-20 minutes of shivering afterward.  Not terrible.

Today I got an email from Paleobread – a new company that offers almond and coconut-based bread – notifying me that they’re now in full production and are ready to ship.  The Ingredients are simple and I can pronounce all of them.  I ordered one of each to try them out.  It would be nice to be able to give Babykins peanut butter and jelly now and then.  The price of the bread is reasonable – $7.99/loaf.  The shipping is kind of high though – they only ship UPS air because of the perishable nature of the product.  The cost for 2 loaves, with their $5 off promo code (1776), shipped, was $25.04.  At that price it would have to be really good to order again.  I hope it is!

I ate some dairy yesterday.  Not too much – less than an ounce of cheese and a tablespoon of sour cream.  I don’t feel awful or anything after eating dairy, but I was a little bloated last night.  I guess that means I really shouldn’t be eating it.  My sticking point continues to be going out to eat with other people.  What do I do when there’s absolutely nothing on the menu that is dairy/grain/msg/nighshade free?  I’ve been encouraged to eat before/after and just go along for the ride.  I’d rather just not go at all, honestly, than go and not eat with others when they’re eating.  Eating together feels…for lack of a better tem…”spiritual” somehow.  Like, it’s something that has bonded humans forever.  I know it would make everyone uncomfortable (most of all, me) if I was just sitting there not eating while everyone else is.  I guess my best bet is probably to eat before or after and just eat a bowl of lettuce or something with others.

I hate social situations where I can’t fade into a supporting role.  I’m not the lead actor when I’m with others…and I like it that way.  I hate when the attention is on me and people ask me questions about what I’m eating and why.  If I was visibly losing weight it might be ok…at least I could say, “This is why I’m doing this…I’m clearly losing weight.  See?”  As it is I’m losing at a snail’s pace and it’s hard to answer the question, “Why?”  Why am I ordering a bowl of lettuce with nothing on it while everyone else is eating Italian beef or tacos or burgers with fries?  Seriously…why?  Cuz some charismatic guy on the internet told me I’d get healthier?

Well…am I getting healthier?

I don’t know.

CT, Nuts, Eggs, and Time

Well, I know I said it my last post I wouldn’t write until I picked up the weights…but that’s just not very realistic!  This is my busiest time of week!  I’ll get to them on the weekend. For now, though, I miss my bloggy.  It’s been days!

CT yesterday was 30 minutes at 51 deg F.  It was not bad…a 3 out of 5.  The day before was a 35 min CB at 50 deg F.  Also a 3.  3 = tolerable, and I didn’t hate it, but I was also watching the clock and looking forward to getting out.  Both days, though, I warmed up pretty easily…minimal shivering – only a few minutes.

I’ve been eating a lot of macadamia nuts lately.  They have the lowest omega 6 content of any variety of nut and they’re really easy to carry along and eat when everyone around me is bowing down to the MSG god.  I know nuts aren’t ideal if you think you have a leaky gut (and I probably do) but I also eat a lot of fish so I’m hoping they balance each other.

My weight is up a pound this week…I noticed when I was at my lowest weight a week or two ago I wasn’t eating any eggs.  It wasn’t really an experiment so much as I was a little tired of them.  I think I’ll go a week or two without eggs and see if the weight loss resumes.  I’d hate to give them up, but I would.  I’m not sure why eggs would be a problem…Dr. K says people with autoimmune conditions should avoid them.  I don’t have an autoimmune condition that I’m aware of…they taste good and I feel good after eating them.  It would be stupid to have an intolerance to something that makes me feel good…right?  And yet… numbers don’t lie.

Gotta go to work.  When I get back in 12 hours I’ll be taking Babykins to swimming class…and then giving her dinner…and then CT…and then 10-15 glorious minutes all to myself…and then bed.

CT better be worth it because right now it’s competing with the rest of my life.  At this point I’m not sure it’s worth it.  I was having results just doing the Leptin Rx…I’ve now been doing cold baths for 2 months with minimal weight loss, some improvement in fasting blood sugar (although it was getting to be good before CT too)…I know I just need to be patient. I’m attempting to undo quite a bit of damage.  My HS-CRP was over 8, for chrissake.  So stick with it.

/peptalk.

MSG and Behavioral Therapy

CT last night was 30 minutes at 52 deg F.  It finally felt kind of goodish again.  Not great…but good.  And warming up was pretty quick – shivering only for a few minutes.  I have been eating seafood non stop, practically.  Overcooked the salmon, though…darn it.  It’s too expensive to waste so I just ate a bunch of dry salmon for my BAB.  Icky.

I’ve been planning ahead a lot more, bringing food with me to work more so I don’t have to eat out.  KFC grilled chicken and the local grocery store are no longer options for me (thanks, MSG), so if I don’t plan ahead I’m eating coconut butter for lunch (which is good, but not that good). I ate all home-cooked food yesterday and had almost no hunger.  Maybe the MSG hiding in my foods has been causing hypoglycemia before meals?  I don’t even know if it has the power to do that.  I don’t have a huge appetite between meals (usually) but I still do get very hungry if I skip meals.  Well, one way to find out.  Eliminate all MSG.

I need to start lifting weights.  I don’t know exactly why I’m avoiding this.  Probably because it requires effort.  Ok…time to put on the big girl panties and do it anyway.  I PROMISE YOU, BLOG…NEXT TIME I WRITE I WILL HAVE STARTED MY WEIGHT LIFTING PROGRAM.  IF I HAVE NOT STARTED IT, I WILL NOT WRITE.

Ok, that settles that.

Darn garbage trucks…stop making so much noise and waking up my child.  Go away.  Thank you.

I was reading about MSG at MSG Truth, a website recommended by a dear commenter. It looks like there may be some good information on this website.  This caught my eye:

…free glutamic acid acts on the pancreas to secrete insulin and acts to stimulate hunger by targeting the amygdala and hypothalamus and creates valium-like GABA in otherwise HEALTHY folks

Hm…that’s interesting.  I’ve been wanting to learn more about the mechanism by which MSG could actually stall weight loss.  No citation, so I’m not sure where she got this information, but it sure looks interesting, and it’s not unlike what Dr. Kruse has to say on the topic:

MSG and aspartame destroys the neurons in the hypothalamus that use the leptin receptor in the arcuate nucleus and in the hypocretin neuron bundle. The arcuate nucleus has the job in the hypothalamus of regulating the amount of hormone releasing factors secreted by the hypothalamus and pituitary. So if these neurons become damaged or rendered non functional your hormones will never be optimal with diet alone. This will cause you to remain fat and/or hypothyroid even if you are doing everything totally primal or paleo.

I had to laugh out loud (yes, I really did LOL) at one point, where the MSG Truth site says:

November 21, 2009 – the FDA has just approved Abilify to treat autism symptoms.  This GLUTAMATE BLOCKER is now being used to treat autism.  At the VERY SAME TIME, behavioral therapists are feeding MSG laden junk food to children with autism as REWARDS for behavior.

Hm…um….well, I actually AM a behavioral therapist and I create behavior programs for people with autism and this is kind of a silly statement that appears intended to undermine Applied Behavior Analysis – a scientifically proven treatment for people with Autism Spectrum Disorders.  I’m not going to spend a lot of time here explaining everything that’s wrong with the above statement, except to say that it’s very outdated and overgeneralized. I’m not sure why someone promoting an anti-MSG website (I’m looking at you, Carol Hoernlein, founder of MSG Truth) feels the need to disparage the other disciplines working toward the same goal.  Can’t we all just get along and hold hands around the Autism ribbon?

/mini rant.

Collecting Data and Refining the Diet

CT yesterday was 30 minutes at 50 deg F.  It was fair.  I’d give it a 3 out of 5.  Being 2 days further in my luteal phase than the last CB (which felt too frigid to finish), there’s not a lot of support for the idea so far that cold tolerance decreases as a woman gets closer to getting her period (which finally showed up late yesterday, by the way…17 days late…).

Mood yesterday was fine.  I’m excited to be collecting data on all this stuff now.  After a few months I’ll have loads of cool graphs to post.  I now collect data on all kinds of stuff using Bento for the iPad (the app is on sale for only $5 till the end of July!).  Here’s what I’m currently collecting data on:

  • Hours of sleep
  • Sleep quality
  • Mood
  • Energy Level
  • AM Satiety
  • PM Satiety
  • Caffeine intake
  • Whether I ate any of the following: Dairy, sugar, grains, alcohol, snacks, MSG, or nightshades
  • Whether or not I had my BAB
  • Meal contents
  • Reactions after meals: (pain, apathy/depression, bloating/gas/GI distress, anxiety/irritability, tired/sleepy, cravings)
  • Whether or not I have my period or PMS
  • CT (duration, rating (1-5) of the experience, core temp before, water temp)

I wish my whole life was studying nutrition and health and collecting data.  That’s how much I like it.  Ok, and having a family too.

Found out yesterday my favorite pastured pork chops from the farmer’s market are slathered in MSG.  I should have known because they’re so good and they come pre-seasoned.  Fortunately they stamp the ingredients right on the paper wrapping…there it was..the 5th ingredient…monosodium glutamate.  Didn’t even try to hide it under the guise of “Natural Flavors”.  I was in the middle of cooking them up when I realized it…and told myself, “Well, having it one more time won’t hurt…” but then I got over it and didn’t eat them.  Won’t be buying those again.  It’s ok, really…I should be eating more seafood anyway.  But really…where else is this crap hiding?  My diet is becoming very simple these days. The next thing I’ll probably be giving up is the chicken I’ve been eating. This stuff isn’t organic, but it’s not really conventional either, and it says no hormones/antibiotics/MSG, etc. I should probably just stick to grass fed meat, eggs, wild-caught seafood, veggies, and fat…and be done with it.  It’s lacking in variety, but if the processing behind these foods is what’s keeping me from losing weight I need to eliminate them.

So that’s it then.  No more processed food till I figure out what’s up with my body.  It’ll be difficult in some social situations, but I’ll just have to figure it out.

Hormones, Parenting, and No CT

I skipped CT last night.  I felt tired all day yesterday and after a long day of driving, socializing, and toddler-care, didn’t want to do anything resembling being responsible.  So I watched a not-bad movie about food addiction, and then went to bed.  I barely had the energy to get under the covers.   Serious fatigue.  The hormonal madness wasn’t over yet either…had a fight with my husband (94% my fault).  At least it was short.  Unfortunately I think I inadvertently taught my daughter to curse.  It really sucks, losing it like that.  I’m trying to get my health in order as much for her as for me.  More, actually.

I baked up a couple pounds of cod yesterday and ate it for dinner and also breakfast today.  I has about 1/3 as much omega 3 oil as salmon, so I may not be buying it much in the future, but I had it already thawed and ready to go.  Anything to boost my cold tolerance.  I suspect the problem I had a couple days ago is less about omega 3s and more about hormones, though – specifically, low progesterone.  That’s what causes all the mood symptoms associated with PMS, right?  I really need to fix this hormone issue.  It’s affecting my relationships, and my ability to enjoy my life and my job. That’s how much these few days a month sucks.

I’m also feeling very deprived of alone-time and time for things I think are fun and relaxing.  It seems very much like I have too much to do – all work and no play makes Lanie a dull girl. Not sure what to do about that.

Baby’s tugging at arm to go do a puzzle with her.

Gotta go.

Any parents reading this?  At what point in a child’s development does a parent get their life back a little?

Weird CT and Ice Cream

My CT experience was weird and not good yesterday.  Water was 49 – 50 deg F (as usual), but it felt so cold and uncomfortable I couldn’t even get in all the way.  I could only get in and submerged up to my ribcage and I could only stay in for 10 minutes.  It was just too uncomfortable.  When I got out the skin that had been underwater was bright pink.  It’s usually pink but not THAT pink.  What does it mean?  It was pretty disappointing.

I may have a clue, actually.  I was reading on Kruse’s forum that some women find as they get late into the luteal (post-ovulation) phase of their menstrual cycle they become less cold tolerant. I suppose considering my current luteal phase is never-ending (16 days late today!), that might have something to do with the fact that I have relatively fewer good CT experiences lately.  I’m thinking about taking a pregnancy test.  I’m pretty sure the lateness is due to messed up hormones though.

I’ll probably give the bath another try today.  If it sucks, I may take a break till Aunt Flo shows up.  I also haven’t had seafood yet this week…usually I have salmon 4-5 times a week.  Can my O6/O3 ratio get messed up that badly in one week that it would affect my ability to tolerate cold?  Don’t know…but going to cook up the fish currently in my freezer and rule that out.

Yesterday my hormonally-driven mood swings were way bad.  It’s a pretty crappy experience when that happens.  It seriously feels like my life is awful and that the people in it are to blame.  Even when I have the awareness that I’m PMS-ing and that every month I go through this, it still really feels like that.  I was so irritable and I was crying at work.  I told so many people off in my head that later in the day when I was feeling better I felt like I had a lot of apologizing to do…even though I didn’t because it was all in my head.  It’s impossible to hide it when I feel this way.  My mouth has a motor all its own that I can barely control…spewing venom all over anyone who dates to tread near me.  Even my husband (who usually gets the brunt of this, poor guy) was getting annoyed with me…he knows exactly what’s driving it and he’s usually quite tolerant of my moods.  Oh well…for some reason I started feeling better around 3PM yesterday (yes, after 10 hours of this moody nonsense…) and I felt fine the rest of the day.

In the midst of my hormonal mayhem, I had a serious craving for vanilla soft-serve ice cream.  My husband and baby had met me at work for lunch, so we went over to DQ and I got one to share with my little one.  I wanted it so much that I didn’t even feel guilty about it.  At least I didn’t eat the cone…just the ice cream.  Sharing an ice cream cone with her was the best part of my day.  She loved it so much, and rarely gets sugary stuff…It was delightful.  It was my first ice cream of 2012.  It’s one of the few things I miss about my old unhealthy lifestyle.

Action plan for today:

1. Go back through my blog archives and see if there’s evidence to support the late-luteal-phase-cold-intolerant theory.

2.  Finish reading my book about slow-motion once-a-week weight training.  I’m actually really excited to try it.  It’s just been lower on my priority list than work, sleep, CT, and baby.  And that’s pretty much 24 hours.  Just have to force it in there!

3.  Make fish.  Eat it.