All posts by Steph Mignon

Blogging for Endometriosis 2013

I am a wife, dog mommy, fitness lover, health and wellness enthusiast, and I also suffer from the chronic illness endometriosis!

With a whole world of socially conscious and vibrantly vigilant endo sisters out there spreading the word through their posts, tweets, and blogs I’ve learned that March is Endometriosis Awareness month. I’ll be participating here with bloggers like A New Kind of Normal to share my endo story and will include fitness, diet, and wellness solutions that have worked for me. In the past year I’ve learned SO much about this illness and just experienced my first cycle almost pain-free! I can’t wait to share with you how I did it. I’ll be doing so on my author site. Read more here.

If you too want to participate, here’s an idea for topics by week:

Week of March 5th: Physical impact that endometriosis has had on your life

Week of March 12th: Mental impact that endo has had on your life.

Week of March 19th: Fertility issues (if any) related to endo

Week of March 26th: Things that you have found helpful with endo or that have allow you to cope in spite of illness

Cheers to a productive, powerful, and prolific Endo Awareness Month!

 

 

Farm Fresh to You: The coolest thing EVER!

Organic, Local, FARM FRESH produce delivered to your doorstep!

Organic, Local, FARM FRESH produce delivered to your doorstep!

I knew it was time to do something when I opened my fridge today in search of a snack. My veggie drawer stared up at me empty and alone, no fruits and veggies to keep it company. Unfortunately, my closest farmer’s market isn’t until Saturday and our weekend schedule is already packed full with yoga, acupuncture and dog grooming (just your average American couple!).

Enter Farm Fresh To You, a service that makes getting your fruits and veggies easy! You select what you want, when you want it and a box of organic and local produce shows up on your doorstep. Exciting, right?!

My friend the Skin Owl has been raving about how easy juicing is because of her weekly produce deliveries. I’ll be cooking up some of her famous Glow Juice in no time now that I’ve jumped on the CSA box bandwagon (Community Supported Agriculture). According to the Skin Owl, I also can expect a wild variety of veggies to arrive forcing me out of my butter lettuce salad, spinach omelet routine. Cheers to a colorful plate bursting with nutrient dense, LOCAL, ORGANIC, and FARM FRESH fabulousness!

How do you make sure your fridge and fruit bowl are stocked full of healthy snacks all week-long?

So called “Healthy” snacks, bad for you?

A bite sized clementine: My favorite snack!

A bite sized clementine: My favorite snack!

I arrived at Yahoo this morning to check an often forgotten email account and saw this headline:

 

 Are Those “Healthy” Snacks Actually Bad for You?

 

Sounds scary, right? Like all this time you’ve been haphazardly snacking on poison! Oh the horror.

Here’s a list of the snack foods Yahoo’s experts said to avoid, plus my commentary:

#1 Rice cakes. Their take, the rice cake “has a mere 35 calories, but consists of high-glycemic, puffed-up white rice with a low nutritional profile.”

My plan: Rice cakes aren’t on it. If my blood sugar’s gonna sky rocket, I want to actually enjoy it while it happens. Enter a piece of dark chocolate. Or better yet, grab an apple or handful of berries for fiber and antioxidants.

#2 Kale chips. I’m new to Kale so I’ve never actually had these, but without a lot of oil and salt, they sound gross! Yahoo claims that “some veggie chips contain more additives than you’d think” and goes on to explain that many bags contain mostly dehydrated potatoes.  If only potatoes were as good for us as Kale!

My Plan: Here I’ll take Yahoo’s advice to make my own (someday when I’m feeling brave). Or I’ll do the next best thing and actually read labels. If the chips I’m buying have more than a few ingredients and contain chemicals I can’t pronounce and understand, I’ll play it safe and reach for a handful of raw nuts or a piece of fruit.

#3 Sweet potato chips. They’re so darn good, aren’t they? Almost as good as sweet potato fries (just because they’re “bad” for you doesn’t mean they’re not disgustingly delicious!). Yahoo’s expert explains that “sweet potatoes contain more fiber and vitamins A and C” than their white counterparts.

My Plan: These crunchy little suckers pack a nutrient dense punch. As long as the ingredient list contains only sweet potatoes, veggie oil, and salt, I’m in! Still, these babies are higher on the carb side so if you’re watching your glycemic load have just a few.

#4 Protein bars. Or should we say glorified candy bars? Just read the ingredients. Low sugar alternatives, like ThinkThin bars may be an option if you’re seeking sweet satiety, but they’re still loaded with wacky chemicals like malititolan ingredient that can cause gastrointestinal upset . I think the air I breathe in Los Angeles is toxic enough, don’t you?

My Plan: I’ll take a protein smoothy with almond milk and berries over a protein bar any day!

#5 Baked chips and crackers. The term “baked” is mostly a marketing ploy and only saves you a few grams of fat, but not the high fructose corn syrup, high-glycemic inflammatory wheat flour, and other mile long, hard to pronounce ingredients.

My Plan: No backed chips and crackers for this body. Unless they’re Flackers, my newest gluten-free, flax seed cracker obsession, I’m not interested.

Other items on Yahoo’s list include Popchips and Rice Crackers, two other starchy, processed foods. And that’s the thing that every item listed has in common: it was born on a conveyor belt. I will always prefer a handful of nuts, a few mandarin oranges, or even a bag of pumpkin seeds (dried seeds + salt = Yum)! Real food is always a part of this girl’s plan.

 

 

My favorite gluten-free cracker: Flackers!

Low carb + high fiber + minimally processed = Delicious!

Low carb + high fiber + minimally processed = Healthy & Delicious!

My Week Without Wheat has now lasted over a month and I’ve never felt better! Throughout the process of purging my cabinets of bread, pasta, and crackers I discovered Flackers. This flax seed cracker contains only organic flax seeds, organic apple cider vinegar, bragg liquid aminos, organic rosemary, and organic sage. AND we’re talking 7 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein per serving!

I’ve discovered all sorts of amazing ways to eat these crunchy little flax crackers. For example, I’ve paired them with hummus, cucumbers, and cherry tomatoes for the ultimate snack. This low carb, high fiber, and absolutely delectable gluten-free option has a place in my grocery cart every trip. But note, I’ve only been able to find them at WholeFoods. If you’ve seen them at other stores do let me know in the comments!

Flackers Snack_2

Spaghetti Squash: your Gluten-Free pasta

Sphagetti Squash

When I worked at Red Bull, my svelte forty something boss used to lament the wonders of the Spaghetti Squash. Back then the thought of it scared me. Squash that you can substitute for pasta? Gross. I was happy in my wheat induced haze. I was happy eating crazy carb loads at every meal.  But no more. Being gluten-free means getting creative with meals, means braving new vegetables like the squash pictured above. Combined with a thrown together meat sauce (sugar-free pasta sauce with organic turkey and fresh mushrooms), this has become my husband’s favorite new gluten-free meal.

Here’s a link to this great pasta substitute’s nutrition info. In summary, the spaghetti squash has 42 calories per 155 grams (which equates to over a cup!). Compare that to around 174 calories in 1 cup of whole wheat pasta. Even if you’re not ready to go gluten-free your waist line will appreciate this recipe. It only has 10 carbs per serving too, compared to around 36 carbohydrates in the aforementioned pasta, which makes it the prefect treat for those leaning toward a lower carb lifestyle.

Here’s now to make this low-glycemic index, gluten-free, and positively delicious food:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 (ovens vary so adjust as needed).
  2. Wash the outside of your squash with soap and water thoroughly.
  3. Carefully slice the squash down the middle into two halves. Scoop out the seeds.
  4. Fill a 2 inch baking dish with an inch of water.
  5. Place both halves of the squash face down in the pan.
  6. Bake for 30-40 minutes depending on your oven (30 minutes is prefect in mine).
  7. Remove squash, allow to cool in fridge for 10-20 minutes (I’m impatient so I wait about 5-minutes, honestly).
  8. Grab a plate or bowl. Then run a fork over the inside of the squash in a scooping motion so that strands separate into your bowl.
  9. Season, butter, or oil to taste.
  10. Finish with the meat or vegetarian sauce of your choice!

Enjoy! :)

 

17 Healthy Ways to SHOW Your Love!

When it comes to love: Show don't tell!

When it comes to love: Show don’t tell!

I have a confession: I didn’t plan anything for Valentine’s Day. And neither did my hubby. We’re the annoying couple that exclaims, “We celebrate love 365 days a year!” But it’s true. For us it’s about the little gestures, the everyday actions that we use to SHOW one another, in healthy ways, what love means. And this goes for friends and other family members too. There’s no need to reserve your affection for a significant other. Because you can’t use love up! There’s plenty of it to go around. With that said, here are 17 healthy ways to show your love for the fitness and health enthusiast in your life.

1. Peel a cutie.

Why does a mandarin orange taste so much better when someone ELSE has peeled it? Add this to life’s great mysteries.

Cutie Heart

2. Slice an apple.

And pair it with a dollop of almond butter. Your love with be impressed by this healthy snack!

3. Pick out the _____ from a veggie medley.

My hubby abhors water chestnut so I take a few extra minutes to pick them out of any Asian style vegetable medley I’m preparing. With a big smile on his face, he notices it every time.

4. Get up a little extra early to make a protein smoothy (love yourself too and make enough for both of you!).

5. Make Gluten-free Chocolate Chip Oat Meal Cookies.

Wrap up a bunch, then hide them in your love’s briefcase, backpack, or computer bag.

6. Make a Joy Jar.

Fill  a container (I typically use a glass jar) with folded up notes of the things you appreciate about them. Don’t be afraid to get graphic! Who doesn’t like to be praised for that booty they work so hard on. Intersperse inspiring and motivational quotes so that they can pull from the jar anytime they’re not in the mood to go to the gym, go for a run, or pop in a workout DVD.

7. Rub the heck out of some feet.

Those feet are what push them higher at the barre and faster on the treadmill. Try Skin Owl’s Argan Infusion to soften tough dry skin. BUT unless you’re a skilled masseuse by trade or have a touchy feely relationship with your buddy, this might not fly with the platonic lovers in your life. Key word: might. I will gladly accept a foot rub from any willing foot rubber.

8. Pick up a pack of new ankle athletic socks as a surprise gift.

Next time you’re at any department store (even Target!), mosey on over to the hosiery aisle. Find some bright, silly, and fun socks that will make your love smile every time they pull’em on. There’s nothing like fresh new socks for hard working feet. Years ago one of my best friends bought me a pair of fancy Nike socks… to this day I think of her every time I wear them!

color cheetah

9. Buy that local deal.

Groupon, Living Social, and Bloomspot are overflowing with awesome fitness deals. Snag that one for the nearby yoga or barre studio you KNOW they’ve been dying to try. Print out the coupon, roll it into a scroll, and tie it with a ribbon or string.

10. Go grocery shopping.

Bring a bag of organic farmer’s market produce home and cook up a healthy feast. Even if you’re not the world’s best cook, they’ll appreciate the effort. Trust me.

11. Offer to join them at their favorite barre studio.

Pay for that day’s class (hint hint hubby). Should he read this post and like to attend a class with me, there’s a spot in tomorrow’s Dailey Method Class with his name on it! Ladies if your man is a Cross Fit fanatic, join him. Gents if your woman is into cycling, saddle up. Working out with a partner is your fitness kitty’s catnip.

12. Make a dance cardio playlist.

Because Tracy Anderson’s music can motivate a person for only so long.

13. Create an in-home gym, even if just for an hour.

Move all the furniture out of the way, have their favorite barre DVD qued up, then get the dogs or kids out of their hair. Providing an entire hour of chaos free fitness at home is a priceless gift for your fitness prince or princess.

14. Show the workout of YOUR choice.

They’ll be thrilled that you are trying to  love fitness almost as much as they do. They’ll be thrilled that you’re taking your health seriously!

15. Get a subscription to ANY fitness magazine.

Shape. Women’s Health. Self. These are just a few of the many awesome fitness mag’s they’d LOVE to have delivered to their mail box.

16. Run a bath full of Epsom salt.

Soar muscles after some brutal circuit training, for example, can benefit from a hot bath full of Epsom salt. Athletes and dancers do it. FitnessWhore’s definitely do it. Tell’em that you appreciate how hard they work, with a fresh, hot tub just for them! But like the foot rub above, this one might best be reserved for romantic partners. Friends of mine reading this, don’t be shy. I’d love to have a gossip sesh from my bathtub.

17. Send any and all cool health and fitness related articles you find while browsing the internet.

They’ll know you’re on their mind. They’ll know you pay attention to what matters to them. They’ll be glad you associate them with healthy and fit living. It takes mere seconds to “share” a blog, blurb, or article, but the goodwill lasts much longer.

The ways to show a FitnessWhore that they’re appreciated go far beyond this simple list. I know you’re dying to share your ideas with me! How do your actions speak louder than words in showing the love?

 

What Doing It Dailey has done for me.

The Dailey Method Venice

Today marks the end of The Dailey Method Venice’s new year challenge. Though I didn’t meet me goal of 30 classes in 30 days, I’m proud to say that I did do over 20. Here’s how I’m feeling after a month of TDM classes and here are the benefits I’m convinced you too can experience if you make TDM a part of your routine.

1. Goodbye back pain! For months I’ve noticed an overall stiffness in my backs and hips. My doctor advised me to eliminate wheat to reduce inflammation, which I have done now for almost three weeks, but I wondered if there was anything else I could do. After just a few classes at TDM Venice which coincided with my new wheat free lifestyle, my back pain is COMPLETELY GONE. No joke. I swear it’s the method’s focus on spine and hip alignment that has made all the difference. Or maybe it’s  the new wheat-free me. Regardless, I’ve found a prescription that works and I’m sticking to it (wheat free + TDM = less body aches!).

2. I’ve lost weight! You may remember the embarrassing post wherein my booty was featured as the main picture. That pic showcases where I tend to gain weight most – my lower half. Well… I’m proud to announce that I’ve lost 6 lbs in the last month! And my booty has never felt and looked better (just ask my hubby). My seat is lifted. I have less cellulite.  I even found myself prancing around in itsy bitsy teeny weenie pajama shorts with the shades open (hello bums in the alley, feast your eyes on this!). Hitting up TDM Venice almost 5 days a week, plus a healthier diet, is certainly to blame for my firm and fabulous derriere. This morning I weighed in 142.4 lbs. At 5’9 I don’t quite look like a supermodel, but I’m certainly feeling like one!

4. Cardio is easier! Not only is 2013 the year of the butt, but it’s also the year I’ve decided to improve my cardiovascular fitness. I want to be and look like a runner. I want to be able to run for an hour straight without stopping. I want to feel like I could out run a pack of wolves if I had too (because you know West LA is just one giant wolves’ den, right?). So today, after weighing myself and getting totally pumped by what my scale had to say, I hopped on the treadmill with a vengeance. While 45 minutes of intervals (run 5.0 – 6.0 for 3 – 5 minutes, walk for 2 minutes at 3.8) was still a challenging feat, I felt prepared. I felt strong. I noticed that my posture was upright, my rib cage lifted, and my lung capacity ready to rise to the challenge having not done any real cardio for weeks. TDM Venice’s classes have successfully built my ab and arm strength, muscle groups that facilitate greater cardio capacity and proper form.  In addition, hamstrings and other leg muscles are worked in each class to support knee and ankle joints. No wonder my college runner friend is totally hooked on TDM!

5. I’ve found a schedule I can stick to. Now that the TDM Venice’s new year challenge is over you might wonder what my plan is. Will I throw aside this barre for the next hottest thing? While this FitnessWhore is open to anything, TDM Venice will certainly be a part of my repertoire for years to come.  Once an early afternoon worker outer, I now embrace morning work outs. Cruising down Abbot Kinney as Venice fog burns off  is just such a nice way to mentally prepare to have your ass kicked. I love starting the day at The Dailey Method Venice and plan to keep starting it that way forever if I can (at least three days a week hehe).

Want to learn more about The Dailey Method Venice? Click here.

 

RecipeWhore: Protein packed Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies!

Not the prettiest things, but definitely yummy!

Not the prettiest things, but definitely yummy!

Who doesn’t love chocolate chip cookies? Now that I’ve been without wheat for over a week, I’m even more committed to a gluten-free lifestyle. I do, however, find myself craving sweets occasionally. So when I purchased gluten-free oats from Trader Joe’s, I jumped at the opportunity to try the gluten-free oatmeal cookie recipe on the back. I decided to improve the recipe’s over all glycemic index by substituting refined white sugar with coconut sugar AND by reducing the sugar added.

Here’s the recipe:

1/4 cup butter

1 1/4 tsp baking powder

3/4 coconut sugar (TJ’s called for 1 1/2 cups of sugar!)

3 cups rolled oats

6 oz dark semi-sweet cocolate chips

2 eggs

1/2 cup sunflower seeds or chopped walnuts (I used walnuts!)

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup peanut butter (yay for extra protein!)

Fresh from the oven, gluten-free goodness.

Fresh from the oven, gluten-free goodness.

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, combine sugar and butter and beat until creamy. Add eggs, vanilla, and baking soda and mix well. Add peanut butter and mix. Stir in oats, chocolate chips, and nuts. Place a teaspoon full of dough on a lightly greased cookie sheet about two inches apart (I grease with coconut oil). Bake 10-14 minutes depending on your oven or until lightly brown around the edges. This recipe makes around 30 cookies! Four cookies later, these are absolutely DELICIOUS!

 

Fertility Journey – Part 5 (Endometriosis sucks!)

Picturing this will help me let go of fertility stress!

Picturing this will help me let go of fertility stress!

It’s been a little over a month since my laparoscopy.

The first hardest part of the surgery wasn’t the days after or the tiny little incision wounds (modern surgery is art), but the harsh “coming out” of anesthesia. For me, it was similar to how I imagine being thawed out after a thousand years frozen might feel. Jolting awake to pain and intense nausea were no fun at all, but the Cedars Sinai staff were incredible. A nurse stayed by my bed to regulate pain medication,  bring me water, and assure me that no, I wasn’t dying (even though it felt like I was).

The second hardest part of it all, however, was getting the confirmation that I indeed have severe endometriosis. While I was in my drug induced coma, Dr. Collins was nice enough to visit my mom in the Cedars waiting room to give her an update. She brought pictures of the black grey growths that polluted my uterus and infiltrated my right ovary.  The growths resembled “Little cigarette burns,” my mom said. Awesome, I basically have black lung in my womb. She also had pictures of the two cysts that were blocking my left tub. Contrary to previous lab results, BOTH tubes are healthy! (Finally SOME good news).

Though I was almost 100% sure that years of suffering and an elevated blood test made an endometriosis diagnosis likely, the truth still hurt. Would I have to take Lupron to conceive? How much worse or better were my chances of natural conception after surgery? Should I pursue invitro fertilization immediately? As usual, I was determined to find the answers, but wasn’t exactly prepared for what I uncovered. You can’t always get what you want, unfortunately. Finding out that my tubes are healthy is the only silver lining I’ve seen in a long time.

Next Steps

Both Dr. Collins and Dr. Chang informed me that my best course of action would be to try naturally for the next two months (January and February). According to Dr. Chang the surgery “optimized” my chances of conceiving without the help of reproductive science (imagine that, a baby growing inside me, not put there by Dr. Chang!). But, the window is small. Though no one knows exactly how fast endometeriosis grows back, it usually does. It’s re-growth would interfere with my uterus’ ability to provide the optimum environment for a fetus. If February isn’t our lucky month, then our first (and hopefully our last) cycle of IVF begins in March.

With that said, hubby and I have been getting busy. I’ve learned how to check my cervical position for signs of fertility (high and wet). I’ve learned how to read my mucous like I’m a gosh darn fortune-teller (you will live a long and prosperous life full of babies!). I’ve gone through more ovulation predictor kits than is probably necessary (testing three times a day so I don’t miss the precious and very telling lutenizing hormone surge). January’s cycle is almost over and I’m pretty sure I’m not pregnant (unfortunately), but here’s what I learned THIS month about the baby making process, endometriosis, and how to stay sane through it all.

1. Statistics DO improve with surgery.

IVF.com has an interesting article on the pregnancy success rates for women. Yet they’re only kind of encouraging.

“Pregnancy rates following surgery generally range between 35-40% for severe endometriosis to 55-65% with milder disease. Of those who become pregnant, 30 percent conceive within three months, 50 percent within six months, and 86 percent within fifteen months. There appears to be no difference in pregnancy rates with laparoscopy or laparotomy with laser or electrosurgical techniques. While long-term pregnancy rates may approach 65%, surgical studies that look at fecundity show monthly pregnancy rates as low as 3-6% per month following surgical treatment of this disease (versus 20% per month in fertile women).”

I say kind of encouraging because the last sentence of that quote is the one that disturbs me most. “3-6%” chance of getting pregnant in each cycle! I have a higher chance of developing breast cancer in my lifetime than I do getting prego each month. Ugh. And waaaaah!

2. Changing diet may improve long-term prognosis for endometriosis.

One study draws a hypothetical link between endometriosis, the environment, and genetically modified foods.

“Although the pathophysiology of endometriosis remains unclear, a growing body of evidence points to the implication of environmental toxicants. Over the last decade, an increase in the incidence of endometriosis has been reported and coincides with the introduction of genetically modified foods in our diet.”

You mean all that fake genetically modified soy-meat really could have been contributing to the problem? What about all that healthy whole wheat bread? Just as bad, according to Dr. Collins and the bestselling book Wheat Belly. Dr. Collins strongly encouraged me to cut out all wheat containing products [they cause inflammation], other genetically modified grains, and any low quality, highly processed foods. A follow-up to my blog A Week Without Wheat is coming soon! Eating healthy is hard work!

3. Treating your husband like a stallion on a stud farm is counter-productive.

So this one is probably a no brainer. Picture me standing in my bathrobe mid afternoon with an ovulation predictor strip in hand, shaking it wildly in hubby’s face, while he wraps up a business call (I forced him to work from home for the entire fertility window so he was easily accessible). Awkward and a little bit scary. There are some things that respond to pressure, but male anatomy and baby dancing aren’t among them.  Next month I’m bringing sexy back ;).

4. Patience is the most important virtue.

This one is difficult, especially when you have a small 60 day window in which to conceive naturally. But, alas, inner-peace and Buddha and zen and stress-free might as well all be rolled into one word – patience. When you’re patient, you’re relaxed. You’re okay that things don’t always happen on your schedule. They happen when they’re supposed to happen, on a bed or on a fertility doctor’s table. Patience and babies belong together, now and when mini the Brooker finally arrives.

5. Mindset matters.

One of my favorite quotes is: “The highest fences we need to climb, are those we have built within our minds.” In that case, I’ve got several fences being erected at any given time. There might even be a moat with alligators in it, swimming around, gobbling up my most positive thoughts.

A British study of over 200 women reports that those with the highest levels of stress hormones in their system conceived 12% less than those with lower levels. While it’s pretty hard not to stress a little when the clock is ticking, I’m making a pact with you now to just let go. We’re doing all we can. I’m nurturing my body with healthy food. I’m getting the blood flowing every day at The Dailey Method. Hubby is taking his Proxceed religiously. So starting now, I’m letting go of the stress, the pressure, the doubts, and the angst. I will picture my friend the Skin Owl’s recent campaign, where she’s releasing a bunch of balloons into the sky, anytime I grip that which I cannot control too tightly. I will remember my most happy place, the Lanikai Pill Box hike on Oahu (pictured above). Goodbye balloons! Hello most beautiful beach in the world!

What have you learned on your fertility journey? How have you replaced stress with patience? To let go? I’d love to hear from you!

 

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet – Amanda’s Story #2

Amanda shares more about her journey with the Specific Carbohydrate Diet here! She’s on a roll, ladies and gents, check out how she’s doing it.

SCD Day 7:

I actually downloaded a new app just to make my grocery list (I usually make a list in a mini-notebook). Today, I was determined to go grocery shopping. The SCD diet is so much like the bodybuilding diet I used to follow, in that it requires PLANNING. You have to grocery shop and prepare food (and do dishes), and it is tedious if you are used to eating out or buying food that is already cooked and assembled. I have become used to eating convenience foods, since straying from the “bodybuilding lifestyle”. While struggling to get my footing with the SCD diet, I still have to shop and prepare meals for my husband, and he supports me but he is not even close to interested in the SCD diet for himself. Fine by me, that means I don’t have to share my food.

Before launching my mission, I needed to eat something. Ugh. I settled on 1/2 a chicken breast with a couple small pieces of parmesean cheese and some sun dried tomatoes, heated it in the microwave and wolfed it down. I also had 1/2 an orange. Good enough.

I proceeded to hit up Trader Joe’s for the bulk of my groceries, because they are economical (cheap) and close by. Using the list on my phone was great, so I didn’t go in circles. I wanted to get more cheese, so I looked at the aged “SCD Legal” cheeses. I saw Vermont Cheddar is aged 3 years, so I figured I couldn’t go wrong and grabbed a hunk. I then proceeded to Whole foods for a couple of items I couldn’t get at TJ’s: almond flour, coconut flour, and yogurt starter culture. I love to bake and I sure as hell miss bread, so I’m ready to experiment. Unfortunately, a bag of almond flour is $9.99! The same sized bag of coconut flour is $6.99, still expensive (it’s a small bag) but I decide I will just get the coconut and not the almond. I also found freeze-dried yogurt starter.

So I came home, put away groceries, made dinner for my husband, and decided to take a stab at making SCD Yogurt.

 

yogurt pic

Homemade SCD Yogurt

1 Gallon Organic 1% milk
Yogurt starter
thermometer

I followed the directions for how to make yogurt in the oven (without a yogurt maker). My oven is bad ass and has a “bread proofing” setting that keeps the oven at 100 degrees (right where it needs to be). Since it is supposed to…um…ferment, for 24 hours, I haven’t tried it yet. I really hope it doesn’t disappoint.

You can find the original recipe here.

Coconut Flour Drop Biscuits

I also decided to make some coconut flour biscuits. Yum!

1/3 c. coconut flour
1/4 c. melted butter (or coconut oil, I used butter)
4 eggs
1/4 c. honey
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking powder
**blend ingredients, drop biscuits onto a greased cookie sheet, and bake at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes

I had already made a new batch of baked apples, so when these biscuits were done I ripped a couple off the pan, topped with apples, drizzled with honey and dug in. This was quite delicious and very satisfying. However, the biscuits by themselves are not awesome. The coconut flour has A LOT of fiber and so they are meal-y, and the flavor is just kind of weird. Since I was starving (as usual) when I ate these, I porked out and now my tummy is too full, since I haven’t eaten any voluminous or highly fibrous meals in a week and I think my stomach has shrunk. So I would caution: don’t pork out on these biscuits. I also think, that if one is determined to make the SCD diet their lifestyle, it would be smart to find someplace (online?) to buy almond flour–I cannot imagine eating a slice of cake made entirely out of coconut flour.