First I want to say that just by hanging in there, I admire you. From what you said, you're on the right path, just struggling. You want to do what's right and by putting yourself out there with your struggles, that shows strength, not weakness. Good on you.
Jan18 wrote:some I don't really remember reading. That scares me. Do you think that is cause for concern?
Gosh, I hope not. I certainly don’t remember everything I read. And sometimes when I read something, I may not fully understand and have to be told, sometimes in different ways, multiple times before it sinks in.
Jan18 wrote:I'm still trying to find/create recipes/meals that satisfy me and don't make me feel deprived so I can stick with this new lifestyle. I fall off the wagon frequently....either due to time constraints, social activities, or just being plain too tired to cook/go grocery shopping, etc. And when I fall off, it's "bad" stuff like fries or Culver's custard. Sigh.
Here are the strategies that work for me to keep me on track:
. Feeling deprived is a function of thought, not a physical issue, your body really isn’t being deprived of something, it’s probably just the carb addicted body's cravings or bad gut bugs asking for something you really don’t need. I try to reinforce the right way of thinking about food and not think in terms of deprivation. I try to focus on the health benefits I’m providing my body and remind myself of the huge negatives of restaurant food, sugary eats/drinks, processed/packaged meals, etc. When a commercial comes on I think of the negative aspects of that cereal, orange juice, snack food, whatever. I eat well, varied and satisfying, so that helps with not feeling deprived.
. It’s easier, not completely effortless, but much easier to pass the bakery, soda, snack, etc. sections the of the grocery store by being keto-adapted. I do get hungry, but not nearly as bad, the body no longer screams for glucose fixes, so food isn’t as important to me. Taking my blood glucose and ketone measurement provides feedback to keep me on track. I use a keto-mojo meter. Keto-mojo.com, available on Amazon.
. Having gone on fasts has also helped my thinking when it comes to eating, it has given me more mental resolve over controlling my thoughts on eating. I recommend the book The Complete Guide to Fasting by Dr Jason Fung and Jimmy Moore
You complained about not having time. We’ve been fortunate to have some discussions with Megan Ramos who is the one that works with Dr Fung’s patients as a coach and she’s found how many of them are happy that with fasting they have more time, they’re not constantly preparing food.
. Having a husband who is also a 4 and witnessed his mother deal with dementia also makes things easier to stick with. We’re a team when it comes to following dietary and lifestyle strategies to improve our odds. We bolster each other, ask each other questions, and share things we've learned. I should emphasize, we're STILL LEARNING.
Working with a functional doctor.
I find having to “answer the man” helps keep me on track. A Functional Medicine Doctor (FMD) is one that restores normal physiology and normal body “function” rather than focusing on the treatment of specific diseases. They try to take a more systemic view of the body and get to the root cause of a problem rather than just prescribe drugs for symptoms. My husband and I became patients of Dr Gundry a few years ago. He calls his practice restorative medicine but he’s essentially a functional medicine doctor. Every 6 months we get blood samples taken (16 vials last time) and then we go over the lab results together. He advises us on what to do to improve trouble spots and how to optimize our biomarkers. One doesn’t have to become a patient of Dr Gundry, but if you can try to find a good functional doctor that can be of great assistance to sticking with dietary and lifestyle disciplines. You may have to educate your functional medicine doctor on the peculiarities of ApoE ε4/Dr Gundry's dietary advice, but a good FMD works with the patient and is open to learning.
Keeping engaged/hang with like-minded folks.
It's hard to soar with the eagles when you're surrounded by turkeys. I belong to facebook groups dedicated to/by Dr Gundry and Dr Bredesen, I visit the discussion forums of this ApoE4.info website. It’s energizing to “hang” with others who understand and support. We have a friend who hosts a low carb pot luck at her house about once a month, that’s a great way to eat well as folks show off their favorite dishes and exchange recipes and information on what they've learned on their journey.
Knowledge is empowering
. Not every single day, but I research. I read. I listen to podcasts/interviews. I listen to presentations by doctors/researchers at an annual Low-Carb conference. In addition to deepening my understanding of the underlying health mechanisms, they provide motivational “shots in the arm” making it easier to adhere to best practices. I’m not doing certain things because I’m told I should, I do them because I understand the benefits, and I feel good about treating myself well.
Dealing with family/friends pressure
. Have you heard, “Oh just one slice of cake won’t hurt you” or “I saw on the web that Dr Gundry is a quack”, or “Life’s too short, what’s going to happen is going to happen, there’s nothing that can be done to prevent Alzheimer’s anyway so eat this (fill in the blank).” My thoughts in return, “Yeah, whatever dude, I’m sticking with what I know to be right, your opinion be damned.” I just don’t care what other people think. I've seen my biomarkers get better, I feel healthy/good, I've read about the negative effects of high blood glucose/insulin levels, of high inflammatory foods, of environmental insults, etc. so I'm resolved to stay my course. We have a family member dealing with cancer and in one of the books I read, Radical Remission
by Kelly A. Turner, she addresses why certain cancer patients beat the odds and one of the reasons is those cancer patients have strong backbones when it comes to any resistance they encounter be it family, friends, or even doctors, they take charge of their own health.
Handling Social settings
. We’ve brought our food to wedding receptions before, typically our own big salads with shrimp on top. At one wedding reception, we just didn’t eat (fasted). When invited over for dinner by a couple, we’ve typically brought our own makings for dinner, we’ve found folks love having us over for dinner because they don’t have to do anything.
When friends gather at restaurant, I call up that restaurant’s website ahead of time to review what’s offered on the menu that might work, or is closest to working, and go with that. Typically it’s a salad on the menu that will work the best, but often just have to ask for them to hold the tomatoes or whatever. I’ve carried a small jar of Extra Virgin Olive Oil with Balsamic Vinegar in my purse before. Once, for a pre-planned restaurant birthday gathering of friends, in reviewing the menu and finding absolutely nothing on the menu worked, my husband went to the restaurant ahead of time, told them we had to maintain a special doctor prescribed diet and asked them if they would mind us bringing our own big salads for dinner, and said we’d still tip generously. The restaurant complied. When we throw a party we don’t impose our diet on our friends, we typically get something from a local restaurant for them but eat our own home cooked meals. At my birthday gathering, my husband usually makes a compliant bread that’s somewhat sweet and our guests get regular cake. We then get the leftovers out of the house that same evening by giving it to our guests to take home with them, or the next day by giving it to this young man we know and can use the food.
Life should not be a constant drudgery of trying to keep oneself healthy, that in itself is unhealthy. Make things fun. Do the best you can, forgive yourself when you fall off the wagon but get right back on that wagon.
Jan18 wrote:It's also a challenge to find the odd products Gundry mentions
I find Amazon to be helpful for certain unique products, especially if they aren’t perishable. Often on one of the facebook pages dedicated to Dr Gundry: "The Plant Paradox, formerly Diet Evolution. A support group," or "Plant Paradox by the Books Recipe Sharing," or "Gundry Matrix Group" (there are others, but those are the ones I follow) some one will ask where to find a certain ingredient, responses are typically quick and helpful. Also, when we started on our journey, we began with simple meals (okay maybe boring) but they worked, and expanded from there.
Jan18 wrote:Do you rely on any of his recipes that you can recommend?
Favorite Gundry recipes: the eggroll in a bowl, the lemon poppy bread, (I think those two are in his recipe book) and the artichoke dip. I don’t think the artichoke dip came from one of his books, maybe his blog? Not sure. Anyway here’s the recipe, only we don’t use frozen artichoke hearts, we get canned, and don’t bother baking them.
PP Artichoke Hummus
24 oz artichoke hearts
1/2 cup organic tahini
1/4 cup lemon juice
3-5 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
3 tablespoons EVOO
Paprika for garnish
1. Place thawed artichokes on baking dish, drizzle with EVOO, bake for 25 min at 350.
2. Put all ingredients, including artichokes in a blender/food processor and purée or pulse
3. Sprinkle with paprika