Heart Attacks and Eating Healthy

Posted by lettucelose on December 14th, 2011 |Filed Under Non-Food Rewards | 27 Comments

Week of July 15, 2011:

It is about 12:30 a.m. but since I haven’t gone to bed yet, I still consider this Thursday. I finally got out of this apartment for the first time in two weeks-14 days!! It was 14 days ago that we went to  Wal-mart, I walked around it like I have been doing only that time it left me barely able to walk to the car and it took me another day or so to “bounce back”. It came as quite a big surprise to me then. I haven’t walked very far anywhere since then so I am not quite sure how I would fare now. Maybe, it was a fluke or maybe not. I won’t know until we go there again, I walk around the store again and then see how my knees and legs handle it. I will say though that I have a very “sensitive” inner thigh muscle that seems to be acting up like it has been “pulled”(strained). All yesterday I could feel it being really tense and painful. I iced it for quite some time then put some Icy Hot on it before I went to bed. Today, it seemed fine.

Well, we ate at GC. I was careful with my portions but, unfortunately, when I got home and tallied up both the calories and sodium content, I was left almost speechless. I picked one piece of  a lot of different things. Some of the food items I had never tried before and others were favorites but ones that I knew were high in either calories or sodium so I made sure that I picked smaller portions or just one serving. Even so, I ended up having over 2000 calories(which put over my 2100 high limit) and 4500 mg sodium!! It is a good thing that I didn’t eat much before but I was too afraid to eat anything else afterwards even though I was hungry later in the evening. Crap!! I told P that lately as I have tried to eat less sodium, it seems like all I do is run into problems with my food choices; particularly when I eat out.

After we ate, P followed up on a job lead that L from CM gave him. L suggested that P try S and see if they needed any extra help. It was either luck or L knew something as an “insider”. S is right across the street from GC so I sat in the front under the porch on a bench while P talked with one of the S’s personnel. She told him to stop in early next week and they could offer him some work including being available there on Saturdays. I think we were both speechless. We are so accustomed to things not seeming to “open up” for him that this came as a complete (although very welcomed) surprise.

I also had P’s lab results printed out so when he does get to see a doctor he can present that as well. He called BD after about a 6 week absence and he found out that B had a heart attack recently. I didn’t realize that he was P’s age for one thing. He also is not your typical heart attack profile. He is thin and he doesn’t smoke or drink except his triglycerides were also as high as P’s. When P heard all of this he was visibly affected by this. I think finding out that his own triglycerides are so high really now has hit him after hearing about B’s news. Well, I can see a few places where we can “tweak” our food plan. I read the information about cholesterol that came along with his lab results and I will do all I can to check both of our “diets” from now on.

For starters, I told P that I plan on us both eating the fat free microwave popcorn and going back to Smart Balance “margarine”. As long as it looks like we can afford it, I also want to eat fish twice a week with three times a week as our end goal. I will look for a lower sodium and low fat hot dog. I now will get egg substitutes and try them. P really loves his soft boiled eggs and when I do have eggs I like my yolk as well but I could use egg substitutes in my baking for sure. I could still use the egg yolks in recipes like potato salad but just use half as many so I get some of the flavor and texture but not all of the cholesterol. Again, with these M.O.M. diabetic cookbooks and my own ingenuity, I think we can eat “healthy” and still have delicious food.

As for both of us, we need to get back into a regular, consistent aerobic exercise routine. When we got home and after it cooled down some, P went for a walk. Later in the evening, I had a chance to review the information and I will be more mindful of what makes up some of the fats in both what remains in the refrigerator and cupboards. I also plan on looking for a OTC fish oil capsule that is smaller, doesn’t taste fishy and you only take once a day. If it is small enough maybe even I could get in the habit of swallowing it whole.

The other good news is that my body is getting toned enough where it is actually beginning to show in my clothes. An outfit that I have worn for several years now, an abstract empire waist top with solid knit capris, now almost seems to be too big for me. I am going to send it to the laundromat and, hopefully, it will shrink some. Since there is less of me, both have gotten noticeably longer in length. I don’t mind putting them in the dryer now that they have gotten bigger. I can “afford” to have them be a little more “form fitting”.


Well, we both went to bed around 10 p.m. last night. As usual, I awoke several times but I managed to stay in bed until 4:20 a.m. before I finally got up. I decided to go ahead and make P his chicken noodle soup. However, I do have the tendency to eat the majority of my calories when I am up earlier and it seems like I have “time to kill”. Not exactly what I want to do either since when I do awake I still sometimes have quite a bit of the day left not to mention I don’t always get in all of my food groups when this happens. I seem to favor carbs at that time. I didn’t sleep for long and I do plan on returning to bed in a short while.

I did my lower body workout laying in bed. When I clear the floor space enough I will probably try to do it more often on the hard floor although I do think I am still getting some benefits since I can feel and see the difference already. I can feel my leg muscles getting stronger lately. I feel more secure when I stand in the shower, which was a big reason why I fell last November. A lot of the joint pain has subsided especially as I have added the hip exercises. I know that I was weak in that area as well which might have contributed to the pain in my right hip. According to the book, I can do the quad strengthening exercises every other day for two-three months and, then at that point, I think drop down to 1-2x a week for “maintenance”. So, if I want on August 4th, I can probably do that. I could also give it another month to be on the safe side too. I guess, I will make that decision at that time. It really doesn’t take long so it isn’t a big deal if I go until September 4th.

[Note: I have been keeping a ongoing private journal separately from this diet blog which I am now incorporating some of that material into this blog. Dates written are actual although published at a much later date.]


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