The mission for this blog since I started it in late 2012 has been to help people with health issues eat tasty, satisfying food rather than just the bland stuff nutritionists propose after a major health incident such as my angioplasty in 2012.
But helping people is only possible if they’re listening, otherwise I’m just another tree falling in the forest, unknown and unseen and not helping anyone.
Regular readers of my blog know I began this after having angioplasty to open an 80% blocked artery very close to my heart. Doctors told me I did not have a heart attack but had come very, very close on the day when I felt the pressure on my chest and it seemed like air had stopped reaching my lungs.
A second so-called fitness/diet expert got booted by the person she was trying to train. The cLean Momma Diet is history for this season, it seems, and the advocate of it got a bit testy when she got the boot, blaming her contestant for not following the plan. Really, sour grapes? Bad form, I’d say.
I’ve hovered between 38 and 40 most of my adult life, getting as high as a 44 at one point. I find my equilibrium waist, the size I feel most comfortable with, is normally around 39, which puts me in dubious territory heart-wise.
So what happened last year? I got tired of always being hungry, for one thing. Also, a variety of external stress factors as the year wore on simply wore down my resolve to eat well.
I gained 14 pounds over the course of the year, but six pounds of that came in December thanks to a trip to the place of my birth, New York City, where I ate all the foods I grew up loving — all high in fat, sugar, salt and calories.
My eating binge continued into the Christmas-New Year’s holidays as I once again ate chocolate and candies I have largely given up.
With a new year here now, it’s time for me to jump back on the low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar bandwagon, which will mean a return to hunger pangs but, also hopefully, a return to a smaller waist size as I drop enough pounds to go back to my 38-inch-waist pants.
Processed meats, such as hot dogs and cold cuts, are full of sodium and other things that have led me and many others to avoid them in recent years. I’m always amused by Subway calling its sandwiches healthy when they’re filled with high-sodium processed meats, for example.
Leg of lamb was the Easter Sunday dinner I was cooking back in 1986 when my father died of a heart attack at my home. I’ve seldom cooked it since, and not at all in the past three years since my surgery.
Lamb aside, hats off to Bon Appetit for this roundup.
My recent American Heart Association 5k gave me a chance to speak with some representatives of the Meijer chain when I was done. They were handing out healthy eating tips at the end of the event. I picked up a sheet titled Easy Healthy Snacks and a second called More for a Healthier You.
I found the healthier snacks online in the form of a video too:
Survivors of heart attacks and strokes receive special heart association baseball caps for the event, red for heart attack survivors, white for stroke survivors. They, I, also get strings of mardi gras-like beads, one for each year they have survived. I received three strands of beads this year, the third since my 2012 angioplasty.