Rockin’ Raw, Stress, Ups and Downs, and Learning New Things

March 29, 2013

It’s been ten full days since my last blog post, and for that I can’t even offer a sincere apology, mostly because I have nothing to apologize for.  For those of you who don’t know me personally, I made the decision when I was 17 years old to pursue one of the most stressful types of careers one could go for.  No, I’m not going to share that part of my life on here – but just know that I have been constantly going, going, going for ten full days.  By the way, I very much enjoy what I do.  And I’m very proud.  I’m just a little… tired.

Someone reading this in my field who has been working for ten, twenty, or thirty years would probably laugh to themselves and think that I’m just some rookie who can’t handle it all.  That if I am having issues now, I will never survive.  But those people never had chronic inflammation and pain at age 27, I can guarantee it.

Rockin’ Raw, Raw Potluck, and Community

My best friend from school, Lisa, and I took a sixteen hour class last weekend which is required in our profession.  It was pure murder.  No, it wasn’t that it was the worst, most boring thing ever, but sitting in a room for 4 hour stretches when you have pain running up your legs because you need to move is just about the worst feeling ever.  I must have gone to the bathroom 8 times just so my legs could get some relief. 

The silver lining:  Lisa was awesome enough to accompany me after class to Rockin’ Raw, a restaurant in the West Village, just down the street from where my great grandparents live when they immigrated to New York, which serves ONLY RAW FOOD!  I ordered a raw burrito (delicious, especially since I’ve been craving Mexican food like no tomorrow), and Lisa ordered a taco salad to be on the safe side.  She was such a good sport, but is used to it since Lisa’s sister has been vegan for many years.  For dessert, Lisa and I split an AMAZING piece of chocolate cake with “ice cream.”  It was truly phenomenal.  For those who are just simply frlghtened of raw food, I’d recommened coming in here for a milkshake, made with all raw coconut or almond milk, or a wonderful delicious dessert:

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Last Sunday, my Dad took me to a raw potluck, where I met some pretty cool people who also decided at one point to change their lives and live healthy.  I decided to make one of my signature dishes on the blog: the stuffed peppers.  This time, I added cumin which added a nice sweet flavor.  I also made a raw chocolate mousse and provided organic strawberries for dessert.  Both items were licked clean! I received wonderful complements on both, and it felt great to have a community of people who understood what I was going through, and who appreciated my efforts as a “raw cook.”

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Health Update – the Ups and Downs

Overall, I’d rate this week as a 7 out of 10, which in my book means “OK to good.” I’ve had a couple days of complete and utter exhaustion which is very, very difficult to cope with.  Well, it wasn’t shocking when on Wednesday I received my first set of test results from the doctor: the cortisol and hormone levels produced by my adrenal glands are completely depleted, strongly indicating severe adrenal exhaustion/ hypoadrenia.  Finally, after months of waiting, I looked a blood test that was positive for something.  Such a crazy feeling.  Your adrenal glands, which sitting on top of your kidneys (you know, those things that control WATER RETENTION AND SWELLING in your body), produce chemicals to help you fight stress, allergies, injury, fatigue, etc.  Mine are broken.  And it’s time I fixed them. (By the way, people with fibromyalgia and arthritis often have adrenal fatigue, but never know it.  Go figure).

I am meeting with the doctor on April 11 when my final adrenal tests come back to confirm this, and to find out what I can do besides repair my digestive system to cure what’s going on.  I have done some research, though, and the three main things I keep coming across are:  1) avoid bananas like the plague – yikes, since I eat two a day; 2) my body actually is need of SALT – no not table salt, but the healthy stuff, like himalayan or celtic salt; and 3) the most successful diet for this is a paleo diet.  Yep – there’s a chance I’ll have to eat (clean) meat again.  At this point, I will do whatever it takes to get better.  Although if that’s the case, I’ll have to change the name of my blog to “Carolyn Goes Awesome and Mostly Raw.”

Lastly, a tip I learned the nasty way last night:  nightshade vegetables, like peppers (gasp), tomatoes, and eggplant (tear), are NOT my pals.  And if you too have chronic inflammation, they’re not yours, either.  But like the Martin Sexton song goes: “I hope we can be friends again… someday.”

From my home to yours, have a very Buona Pasqua, Happy Easter, and sunny day.  Spring is officially here.

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