Jackie Parry – author


7 Comments

Health and Monitoring Migraines

Accidental New Year’s Resolution

I don’t make New Year’s Resolutions. Not usually.

I prefer to look back on the year and remind myself of all my achievements.

Quite by accident, on the first of January I decided to take action against my migraines.

Image courtesy of Sira Anamwong at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Sira Anamwong at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Morphing Migraines

Over the years my migraines have changed.

  • They were a short burst (one day) of extensive pain and vomiting
  • Then the vomiting eased but the pain intensified – sometimes to a frightening level
  • Then the pain eased – so less pain but now they last 4-5 days
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I can just about function with these ‘new’ migraines but I don’t really like how they travel from one side of my head to the other – I can feel them creep across my brain!

Drugs

The other problem is that I am taking more and more painkillers. I’m avoiding prescription drugs, but this has to change because:

  • Right now I take codeine with aspirin and throw down some panadol if I need an extra boost
  • Codeine will become a prescription drug next year
  • I’m fed up with popping so many pills
Image courtesy of yodiyim at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of yodiyim at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Action

As of the first of January (quite by accident) I’m listing everything I eat and drink. I include the time spent on the laptop, quantity of sleep, level of stress, bed time and the time I wake up.

Boring Diet

Consequently, I am making other changes:

  • I am avoiding chocolate
  • I’ve cut right down on alcohol (not a drop during the week and a small quantity Friday and maybe Saturday night)
  • I am avoiding chocolate
  • I am rarely eating meat (well, I am consuming fish). As an A+ blood type, my body finds it easy to digest carbohydrates but hard to process meat
  • I am avoiding chocolate (total success so far, by some miracle).
  • Did I mention the chocolate?
Image courtesy of Master isolated images at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Master isolated images at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

How

  • The chocolate is hidden in the fridge. I’ve recently been told that Australian chocolate has additional preservatives to prevent it melting as quickly.
  • I’m drinking a lot more water – ensuring my intake is at least 3 litres per day
  • The less chocolate and meat I eat – the less I crave it. So it’s becoming easier.

Results so far

  1. I have loads of energy (driving hubby nuts)
  2. I wake up less grumpy (hubby happy)
  3. My digestive system is working a treat (everyone’s happy!)
  4. My head has been quite clear for a week (again – everyone’s happy)
  5. I’m losing weight (yay me!)
  6. My perpetually dry lips are starting to repair (whoop whoop)
I'm back to my old self - only a better version!

I’m back to my old self – only a better version!

Relapse

I know I will struggle at times (Noel ate a meat pie yesterday and my stomach growled in protest!). When it happens I will just revert back to the better behaviour the next day and carry on.

I’m looking forward to reporting how I do. AND – why is this subject on my author blog? Well, sore eyes and head are rather important to avoid if I want to write!


16 Comments

Eating Healthy for your body and wallet

My body has been hinting, quite heavily, at the kinds of food I should and should not be eating. I’ve decided to try and listen to what my tummy is telling me and eat less meat; certainly less red meat.

I have always wanted to adopt a healthier way of living and have managed to find excuses. Now, when I seem to be busier than ever, I’ve delved into cooking vegetarian (mostly) meals and I am amazed at the fantastic results.

So, after finding the wonderful farm/vegetable shop four kilometres up the road, I rubbed my hands together, googled vegetarian recipes and off I went – here’s the first week. (I spent 20 Euros on three huge bags of vegetables.)

Just a small part of my first shop.

Just a small part of my first shop.

First night: Ginger Veggie Stir Fry

I used the vegetables I had purchased that day and I used plain old flour instead of cornstarch. I never have all the correct ingredients. This worked a treat.

I cook great rice, even if I say so myself. I cover the rice by about an inch of water (maybe a fraction less), boil until the water goes milky, then put the lid on and turn off the heat. Ten to fifteen minutes later, perfect rice.

This meal fed Noel and I for two nights.

Stir-fry

Stir-fry

Second night: Left over Ginger Veggie Stir Fry.

Third night: Curried Lentil Pies Recipe

This is a fantastic recipe, so easy and so fulfilling.

I stirred in some Tandoori paste instead of ghee. I used olive oil instead of butter, I didn’t use mustard seeds or ground cumin and I used the vegetables I had purchased. Definitely use pumpkin and potato for the top – fabulous!

This fed us for three nights! And I have made it again since, I can’t get enough of this and it fills me up easily.

Curried Lentil Pie

Curried Lentil Pie – when dished out, add a spoon-full of natural yoghurt – delicious

Fourth & Fifth nights: Left over curried pie.

Sixth night: Chicken stew

Noel bought some chicken. I find it hard to completely cut meat out of our diet. I enjoy it, but I haven’t eaten red meat for a few months now and I certainly feel the benefits.

This was just plain old chicken stew, with all those great ‘in season’ veges, swedes, parsnips, carrots, also onions, leeks, and whatever you have to hand.

I braised the chicken separately first. In the big pot I used vege stock, cup of wine, a few herbs (whatever is to hand – basil, parsley), a bit of sweet chilli and soy sauce. A half a cup of French lentils is a good idea to help fill you up. Perfect!

So easy, tasty and filling.

So easy, tasty and filling.

Seventh & eighth night: Left over chicken stew

Healthy wallet

My 20 Euro shop lasted a week-and-a-half (and I still have a whole cabbage left). I did another shop this week, and that cost 13 Euros – for two enormous bags of veges. This week I tackled:

Spinach and blue cheese frittata – I didn’t have nuts or tomatoes, it was still yummy.

We'd worked hard that day - so I added pumpkin and potato mash and a delicious salad of spinnach, fresh parsley, carrot, zuchinni, onion - yum!

We’d worked hard that day – so I added pumpkin and potato mash and a delicious salad of spinnach, fresh parsley, carrot, zuchinni, peppers, onion – yum!

A treat! – Walnut and Coffee Cake

We were given some walnuts and did I have fun cracking them – then I made this wonderful, truly fantastic cake – with a healthy twist!

I didn’t want to use double cream and I had only ‘normal’ yoghurt. So I spooned out two pots of yoghurt (small pots) into coffee filters (one pot per filter), then, I stood the filters in a colander, and let all the liquid drain away. Voila! Thick (Greek style) yoghurt – thick enough to use as a cream substitute!

Draining the yoghurt - for 1-2 hours.

Draining the yoghurt – for 1-2 hours.

It worked perfecting – the icing is so sweet that the yoghurt balances out the sweetness and in all honestly, tasted just like cream!

Not as pretty as the recipe picture - but absolutely delicious!

Not as pretty as the recipe picture – but absolutely delicious!

I was so proud of my efforts - I had to include two pics!

I was so proud of my efforts – I had to include two pics!

Healthy living

I am loving the ‘zone-out’ time cooking is giving me. My body is enjoying the benefits and so is our bank balance! The big plus is finding recipes that are fulfilling, I am a big eater. Now, I can eat as much as I want and I’m not piling on the pounds!

I;d love to hear from anyone who has great recipes to share.