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Go Back   Dirk's Works > Macrobiotics > Share the Wealth of Health

Share the Wealth of Health Are you a follower of the grain? Have you been searching for health and happiness and found it? Still searching? Come share your experiences with other macro followers.

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Old 12-26-2013, 02:49 PM   #1
ojai22
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Default "Falling Off the Wagon"

For several days before Christmas I was so busy I was too tired for words. Didn't cook or eat properly. Tortilla chips and humus for lunch. Pasta with tomato sauce. First time I'd had tomatoes in months. The food contributed to the low energy level; I wasn't getting much nutrition.

I observed the situation objectively and knew I had to turn it around. I don't know how I found the energy to go in the kitchen and start cooking, the decision seemed to bring it. Perhaps turning my attention to good food helped as well.

I rinsed the millet, dried it in a skillet, then started it cooking. Made the batter. Chopped onion, celery, and dill pickle for the kidney bean salad, then put it together. Heated the oil for tempura and sliced the veggies - carrots, cauliflower, and a bit of onion.

Only thinking of the food now. Fry the veggies, stir the millet, make the dipping sauce, get the salad from the fridge. I've done this without much thought, isn't something missing? I don't have a pickle. Well, there's the dill pickle in the salad. That's a pickle. Isn't that a pickle?

It tasted so good. I was starved for good food. Thankful to myself that I had taken the time to do it right. The after dinner cup of tea topped it off.

The next day I could tell the difference in my energy level. It was Christmas Eve with much to do. And it all got done!
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Old 12-26-2013, 07:19 PM   #2
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

Yep.

Thanks, ojai.

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Old 03-14-2014, 11:10 PM   #3
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

You can follow only so far. When you learn of a wonderful thing that someone did that brought about grand results, you can't follow them exactly. What they did was what they needed to do. Your body, your life, is your own. What you need to do is peculiar to you. You can follow a general pattern but you have to make it your own at some point to make it work thoroughly and well. Otherwise there will come a time and you will reach a point where your template will fade away. Simply because it isn't yours. You didn't pull out of it what you needed to make it yours.

All the people I've read about that changed to a Macrobiotic diet successfully have done that. At first it was puzzling. They were talking about the same thing but they all seemed to be located somewhere near the Tower of Babel. The HipChick, for example. She seems to fall off the wagon now and again and actually expects to do so. Immediately she jumps right back on, probably with no harm done as she is very healthy. If she didn't do it this way, would she be able to continue it at all? I doubt it. Her own flexibility allowed her to adapt the diet to her own needs.

It's fine to follow sample meals while you're learning your way around new foods and new ways to cook. But if you want to continue, you must find ways to adapt what you've learned to your own life. For instance, there's so much talk about brown rice and with good reason, but I really like millet better than rice. I put off cooking brown rice because I really don't like the sorting of it. And cooking it. So I'm often left with no cooked rice when I need it.

I don't have that problem with millet. I like it better and cook it more easily. No problem. The croquettes are the best I've had. I do mix some rice with it and it makes a wet mess on my hand as I shape it with a fork, but it plops right into the skillet and browns like a dream. And tastes soooo good. I can't get this with rice and don't really care. However, it seems like I usually have rice on hand but am forever out of millet.

I've solved the problem. I've discovered amazon.com sells a 25 lb. bag of millet. And I ordered it! I will always make sure I have brown rice. I can buy it from Whole Foods Market in 25 lb. bags but don't need as much now. I will cook and eat it, but I lean more toward millet so I'm giving it a try as my main grain and will see how it goes.

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Old 04-09-2014, 07:06 PM   #4
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

This diet, this way of life, is not easy. I see why many people start it with good intentions but can't see it through. I remember doing the same thing a few years ago. I could see the importance of it and tried hard to make it work. I still ate most of the right foods but also consumed a few that are detrimental to good health. That ruined it completely.

I don't think you can follow this regimen based solely on your own decision. It's too difficult. And also fragmented. You will surely fall by the wayside.

This time around there's a difference. I didn't go to it - it grabbed hold of me. It insists on being followed and I hang on like my life and health depend on it. Which it does. I overdo the Yang part and it demands I make it right.

Many, many things I learned long, long ago, and some not so long ago, push themselves forward from the abstract and want to be put into concrete form. I want to watch a movie but can't seem to summon interest for anything available.

It's like I've been building something, bit by bit, over lo these many years. Now it has enough momentum to move on it's own. And it expects me to write about it which I've discovered I can't do very well. There's always more that should be said, and in a better way. Whatever I write falls short. Even I can see it. That alone makes me look like a crazy person.

Ten days of brown rice last September have brought me here...still plugging away and wondering if I'm doing it right. I can see the value and importance of an MB cooking class. And association with other like-minded folk would make it an easier journey. Ha! That would make it an easier life!

Enough complaining! Like Jonathan Livingston Seagull I can fly the far cliffs alone. And still stand.

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Old 04-10-2014, 03:14 PM   #5
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

Zen Macrobiotics by George Ohsawa


"If you should decide to study our five-thousand-year-old philosophy in order to realize infinite freedom, eternal happiness, and absolute righteousness, understand that you must do this on your own, independently, by and for yourself....First of all, make up your mind to conquer your sickness--not his or hers, but yours!"
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Old 04-22-2014, 08:26 PM   #6
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

I am constantly amazed by this way of eating. I didn't realize that a way of eating could make you feel so good that you were actually happy - from eating! All my life I must have eaten just to stop being hungry, or because something tasted really good. Assuming that my body was magic and would turn all that drivel into fuel.

Of course you need certain vitamins but they're in that great-tasting food you're eating. If your body doesn't need it, not to worry, it will simply pass away. You're good.

I got unbalanced again. I can't seem to eat millet without making it too Yang. (Found a way to make it which I will leave in Recipes.). It's the additions that's causing the problem, I think. Tahini Sauce or Tamari Sauce made with Sesame Oil. Geez, it's good. Through the fog I saw the problem and decided to eat more quinoa. It's so light and fluffy, tastes great, too.

I ate lighter for a couple of days and couldn't believe how I was feeling. Better than ever. Was sustained longer. Felt so good I was actually happy from the food. This is such a basic thing that everyone should know and yet, when you learn it, it seems miraculous. You can't possible feel this way and start a war, or hurt someone, or take anything belonging to another. It would be impossible. You don't need any Commandments - you're like a law unto yourself.

I made a stir-fry using about half rice and half quinoa. It was the best-tasting stir-fry I've ever eaten. I am finally understanding something - this way of eating isn't a cut-and-dried diet. It's finding what is best for you. And only you can find it; not another person on this green earth can tell you - they can only set guidelines. I wondered about the differences in cook books but that may be it. Each one has found what they need so they cook and write accordingly.

A little of the good feeling may be due to the dropping of a burden on my blog. It feels like I'm hanging myself out to dry. I feel lighter these days.
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Old 04-22-2014, 11:13 PM   #7
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

This is something Mrs. Dawg and I have discovered as well. We're happier, our energy flows more consistently through the day, and this way of eating is 100% responsible.

We love the combination of rice and quinoa, too.

Thanks, ojai.

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Old 12-27-2017, 10:01 AM   #8
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

I’ve been rereading some of these threads in an effort to get back “on the wagon”. They are inspirational! I struggle most with eating healthy and in moderation around the holidays. I’m hoping to make 2018 a better year, the 2019 a better year than that, and so on and so forth.

I’m convinced at some point after making the lifestyle change, it sticks, enough to counter temptation (and negative influences). It’s really hard to live in a house full of sugar and meat eaters.
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Old 12-29-2017, 05:26 PM   #9
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

Quote:
Originally Posted by flyngirl5 View Post
Iíve been rereading some of these threads in an effort to get back ďon the wagonĒ. They are inspirational! I struggle most with eating healthy and in moderation around the holidays. Iím hoping to make 2018 a better year, the 2019 a better year than that, and so on and so forth.

Iím convinced at some point after making the lifestyle change, it sticks, enough to counter temptation (and negative influences). Itís really hard to live in a house full of sugar and meat eaters.
Agreed, i think surroundings makes a big difference. Support is so important. And when I don't do a decent shopping and have the right macro foods in the house and prepared, that's when it becomes so easy for me to grab the other stuff that I shouldn't eat that others do. But, I'll figure this out regardless. 😁
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Old 12-30-2017, 07:02 AM   #10
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

I think a lot of people struggle around the holidays. It certainly can get difficult when you're invited to parties and they don't take into account your way of eating.

Support is indeed very important and I think as a group we support one another well which is really helpful. I also feel like I'm still learning, but I happen to like that part a lot.

My family likes to joke about this, but I somehow managed to get them to eat more MB in the process.
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Old 12-30-2017, 07:12 AM   #11
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

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Originally Posted by LittleMonkeyDog View Post
I think a lot of people struggle around the holidays. It certainly can get difficult when you're invited to parties and they don't take into account your way of eating.

Support is indeed very important and I think as a group we support one another well which is really helpful. I also feel like I'm still learning, but I happen to like that part a lot.

My family likes to joke about this, but I somehow managed to get them to eat more MB in the process.
Yes, holidays are a big temptation factor but I so so love the support we give one another. The learning part never ends in any subject. What a ride!!!
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Old 12-30-2017, 10:12 PM   #12
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

I convinced my dad to let me make brown rice noodles to go with the scallops he was cooking yesterday, and in the end he and my mom (it was just us three for dinner) both liked them a lot! So that was a little victory.

It is hard, especially because everyone is disposed to be a skeptic. Or they'd rather find a quick fix like a pill or a drink mix. (That sounds like a line in a rap song ) But if we join forces in 2018, we might make some headway despite the naysayers and handy snacks in all of our houses.

I had a system going at the beginning of school, before my kidney stone overturned me for two weeks and my life for much longer. Which is ironic, since it was more proof that I need to eat better. But what I had been doing was eating MB for breakfast, lunch, and all snacks thereabouts, and giving myself a little leniency on supper (and anything after) since that's the family meal and the hardest to choose what I eat without making my own separate meal. That way, I knew two out of my three meals were good ones, and it was more doable than a complete diet change, since it's not practical for me to restock the entire kitchen with four others living in the house and me not being in charge.

Anyway, that system might not work for everyone, and ideally it's a temporary fix for me, but that's one way I found to start incorporating macrobiotic eating into a busy daily life. Starting with small, achievable steps seems like the way to go in order to stick with it long-term. Another method I had was setting a goal of eating closer to the right percentage of vegetables in my daily food intake. I was going to have different goals every week, but that one proved challenging enough to keep me busy for a while.

I think my main difficulty is figuring out a variety of foods to make that are tasty enough for me to want to cook them. I'm not great at narrowing down what seems like infinite options, or visualizing possibilities. I'm a kinesthetic learner, so I learn things best with lots of experience or practice. Since this is all new-ish territory, I tend to get stuck in a rut making one kind of food, or I'll throw stuff together in the moment without any planning, so it's hard to replicate. Also, I recently figured out I need to eat more vegetables that are baked/roasted/otherwise slow-cooked, while most of the time I've been sauteing or boiling them. But I don't have ideas, and it's all open and scary, and... help!

*deep breath* Okay. It's been a while since I've been on here, but you can see I made up for lost time.
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Old 12-31-2017, 10:17 AM   #13
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

I've tried getting the right percentage of veggies in my diet too, LD... but vegetables are the hardest for me. I don't cook; that's my problem. Because my husband is the cook in my house (and I never bothered to learn or take the time to make my own meals), I'm usually stuck with the portion of the meal that is mb-friendly, and there aren't usually veggies other than potatoes.

I do cook for myself sometimes - but if I do, it's almost always whole grains. I've made sushi once before and cooked some stir fry. The only thing I haven't botched is oatmeal (and I mean that seriously - I've burned rice on multiple occasions. I think I might have mentioned this before... Have you ever tried to eat burned brown rice? Blecch.) Eating out actually makes it easier to maintain some reasonable balance of grains and vegetables, but you run into other problems when trying to keep balance of yin/yang. And it's not cheap.

I plan to start cooking more in the near future when I get back into the swing of things. But for the time being, I'm going to follow Dirk's example and keep my meals extremely simple, which reduces my risk of starting fires.

So, plain boiled grains and carrots are a staple. Things I don't have to cook such as rice cakes and crudites. And maybe some stir fry now and then if I get really adventurous!

My point (I think) is that the key to any startup "dieting" plan is keeping self-expectations as realistic as possible. Demand dedication, but don't get frustrated with each misstep, and don't expect to get things perfectly right...

And to keep in mind that this is a state of mind/lifestyle, not a "diet". That's what helped me the last time. That's why I'm revisiting my books and this website (and the amazingly supportive friends I've made here!)

If there's anyone out there reading these threads & wanting to try and live a healthier lifestyle - I hope you'll jump in and ask questions. Many of us are relative newbies, too... And some of us are seasoned veterans.
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Old 01-12-2018, 05:29 PM   #14
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

Normally when I think about healthy living, I think about all the things I'd like to change as things I'm failing to do. This mentality tends to skew my perspective by making me feel like a loser and wonder if I'll ever get where I want to be.

Today I decided to take a new approach and write out all the ways I've started making healthier decisions since I began learning about macrobiotics. It really helped me to see that I'm capable of making positive changes in my lifestyle and that I've made a lot of progress in what I do and how I think. And now I think I can find the courage take some forward strides this year.

I wrote a blog post with my list and the reasoning behind it here: http://www.dirkbenedictcentral.com/f...blog.php?b=226 If you need a little encouragement, I'd recommend writing your own list of the steps you've taken to live healthier so you can see all you've accomplished so far and be inspired to keep moving forward. And if you want to share your list on this thread, I'm sure that would be encouraging for the rest of us as well.
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Old 01-13-2018, 04:54 AM   #15
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

LD, I just read your blog and find it inspirational. Focusing on 'positive' instead of 'negative' has proven to be very helpful for me.
You've done such a great job and I'm positive you'll continue to do so in the future.
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Old 01-14-2018, 12:53 PM   #16
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

LD, you are quite the inspiration. i just read your blog and it sounds very positive and uplifting. i need that, especially this year.
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Old 01-14-2018, 06:10 PM   #17
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Default Re: "Falling Off the Wagon"

That was awesome!!! Iím really proud of you, and Iím proud a lot of people on this website.

I might have to start my own list...

In the spirit of being positive, Iíve been thinking a lot lately about how bad I feel (aches and pains, etc) after having a rough month - macrobiotically-speaking. Another way I can, and should think about it is how much better I felt before my little stumble, and what a difference Iím going to see again now that Iím getting back to basics.

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