Popping Pills 1: Vitamin D3

My vitamins

Supplements

I have mixed feeling about dietary supplements.  Most vitamins and minerals that we need can be taken in natural food form.  That seems so much better than popping pills to make up for holes in our diet.  Pills do not always absorb into the body and without the enzymes and other nutrients that accompany the target vitamin in whole foods, they may not be as effective.  There are a few areas that I just seem unable to ingest the desired amount no matter how many juices and smoothies I mix up.

I thought I would share my list and my justification for needing each.  Today is D3 day.  Everyone should thoughtfully consider and research any supplement that is added to their regimen.

Do you take supplements?

Vitamin D

I take this supplement because I have tested low.  Sunshine without sunblock is not a good option for me because I have a skin condition (vitiligo) that takes pigment out of my skin and may increase my risk for sun damage.  Another reason is that I have eliminated most fortified foods in my quest to eat more whole foods and avoid dairy.

I have had two tests with results of 15 and 23 ng/mL.  The table below is from the National Institutes of Health.

Table 1: Serum 25-Hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] Concentrations and Health* [1]
nmol/L** ng/mL* Health status
<30 <12 Associated with vitamin D deficiency, leading to rickets in infants and children and osteomalacia in adults
30–50 12–20 Generally considered inadequate for bone and overall health in healthy individuals
≥50 ≥20 Generally considered adequate for bone and overall health in healthy individuals
>125 >50 Emerging evidence links potential adverse effects to such high levels, particularly >150 nmol/L (>60 ng/mL)

* Serum concentrations of 25(OH)D are reported in both nanomoles per liter (nmol/L) and nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL).
** 1 nmol/L = 0.4 ng/mL

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Build Your Own Biathlon

By Land and By Sea

A friend had told me about an environmental awareness event at a state park this weekend so I decided it would be a great chance to use one of the great parks. To make the most of attending the event, I decided to go stand up paddleboarding in the park’s spring. After a little SUPing, I went for a hike on one of the trails.

As I came off the trail, the speeches were beginning. A lovely day, a great workout, and I was asleep early last night.

Katie’s Kitchen’s Almost Pesto Chicken

Looking for a new spin on my baked chicken, I took inspiration from the food channel and made an almost pesto crusted chicken.

Almost Pesto Chicken

To make:

Combine in blender 2 large kale leaves, 3 cloves of garlic, a generous squeeze of lime, and just enough water to help the blender break it down (~1/4 cup).

Salt and pepper the chicken before topping with the almost pesto.

Bake at your preferred temperature and time for chicken.

It does taste better than the afterthought of a photo makes it look.  Enjoy!

 

New SUP Lake

I explored a new lake last weekend.  It is not as popular with the local stand up paddleboarders as my usual spots, but some do go out there.  As the first speed boat passed by, I realized why I was the only paddler there that day.  There are very few wake free zones.  There were only a few boats out that day, and it is a big lake, so it was not a problem.  There was no launch fee, so, I will go back.

Have you explored anywhere new lately?

Juice Update

For Recovery:

After a long paddleboard workout, I used the chocolate veg protein mix in a smoothie with lunch in hopes for a fast recovery. It did seem to help. 
The next morning, I added a tbsp of peanut powder and had a smoothie breakfast.
Mixing:

1 cup Flax milk
1 scoop raw chocolate protein
1 banana
4 ice cubes

363 calories (200 from banana)

I’m using Flax milk this week because it is good and the shop I went to had it and not almond milk.

Juice for a new decanter:

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My SUP down the Venetian Canal

Up the Lake Without a Paddle:

As the fog began to rise over the trees, I headed out, eager to embark on my next SUP (stand up paddleboard) adventure.

~ wait ~ I forgot my paddle…turn my steed around and head back to the homestead.  Paddle now on board, off to the refreshing ambiance of the lake.

Traveling to the Canal:

When I pushed off from shore the wind was fairly calm.  I decided to go for my longest paddle thus far, 3 miles round trip.  I passed a few paddlers and a fisherman along the way.  A beautiful morning, a fabulous workout.  There were a couple of homes for sale along the way so I stopped and put in bids.

Florida’s Venetian Canal:

The canal is a beautiful, long and narrow passageway between lakes.  It was used by loggers a looong time ago.  The canal insists that you are in the moment.  It has twists and turns that you you hope to not find a boat behind.  I only had to pass one boat and, luckily, we met in an area that only required him to back up a few feet into a a small recess.  It was a boat that gives tours of the lakes and canals in the area.  Hopefully, the clients did not hear my colorful declaration when I realized we were headed for each other.

The Long Journey Home:

I had decided to see how fast I could make it back to the launch site.  It took me about 40 minutes to get out there at a leisurely, take pictures, figure out where I am going, kind of pace.  When I came out of the canal, I was blown back by the wind.  I discovered that I make a pretty good sail.  This prompted a decision to sit and paddle kayak style.  That lasted about 15 minutes.  By then my arms were crying and I had made it to the other side of that lake.  There, the houses and trees provided a bit of a wind break.  Two ladies were emerging from the short canal leading home and asked where something was.  I did not know but told them where the Venetian canal could be found.  I was thinking, “good luck with that in this wind.”  As I made my way through the mini-canal, I heard them coming up behind me.  They turned around fast…Am I going that slow?  Ugh…I paddled and paddled but they still passed me with ease after we exited the canal.  I blamed it on being tired at the end of a long paddle.  Once we made it to shore (with a 30 minute time) I discovered that they run a SUP tour business in another town.  I suppose it is okay for professionals to pass me with faster boards. 8)

How many dogs can you find? (Click photo for a slide show)

Healthy Apps

I have two new favorite toys on my smart phone. They are fun and informative so I want to share.

1) My Fitness PalMy Fitness Pal

This app is a great tool to journal and track your diet and exercise. It can help you set your calorie goals and will take into account calories burned through the activities you enter. There are countless exercises and food pre-loaded into the app. You can also add your own or just enter a calorie amount. A great bonus is that it tracks several nutrients and will display daily and weekly summaries. It helped me to realize that my iron intake is about half of what it should be. I thought all of those green, leafy vegetables were enough, but now I know that I need to make more of an effort.

I am having the most fun with the bar code scanner that will automatically load all of the information of the foods you scan. You just adjust the number of servings and you are done! The only thing close to frustrating is that when I am making juice, it does not have the juice of a leaf, just the whole plant. There are specific juice recipes pre-loaded, so I did use one that seemed close to what I made for one meal’s “add”.

Keeping a journal can help you be more aware of what you are doing. this app makes it closer to fun to track exercise and diet.

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Juicey Friday Recap

This was a week of smoothies and juice…

The Epic Fail:

Someone planted the idea of a chocolate PB2 (powdered peanut butter-no oil) in my head. I went to make it and decided to put in some of my previous green juice because it was getting too old to last. WRONG move! I doubled everything and added honey to make it bearable. Leftovers anyone?
No recipe for this. It’s in your best interest.

Sweet Redemption:

After the disaster smoothie, I needed a comeback. This was it!
For my best yet smoothie:
1 cup almond milk
1 banana
1 pack Garden of Life chocolate protein mix
300 calories (most from the banana)

Juice for Two Days:

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A Juicer and a Blender walked into a Bar…

I addition to all of the wonderful and tasty treats I had through the holiday season, a new blender made its way home with me.  With new toy in hand, I have been re-inspired about my juicing and smoothie operation.  So I thought I would share a few of my concoctions from my juice site just to update and maybe even inspire.

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Blood Clots and Subdural Hematomas

Blood Clots

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has recently been diagnosed with a blood clot in her head after a fall. (Image Link: CNN)

“Secretary Clinton’s doctors released a statement…, and it said that she had a clot in the vein that is situated in the space between the brain and the skull behind the right ear. Now, the technical name for this is a right transverse sinus venous thrombosis. And what it means is there’s a clot in the vein that drains blood from the head. And this is likely a result of this fall that she had where she bumped her head and had a concussion, and possibly there was a small bleed at that time, which led to this clot.”

This does speak to one of the dangers that I was referring to in a previous post about falls and how to improve balance.

Her fall seems to have been more a result of having the flu as opposed to a lack of balance.  That is why I wish to discuss the need to be vigilant after a fall.

Subdural Hematomas:

Subdural hematomas can be sneaky.  A subdural hematoma is a collection of blood on the surface of the brain.  An acute hematoma presents very quickly after an injury.  The symptoms appear quickly and they can be deadly.  Chronic subdural hematomas are the sneaky ones.  These generally involve a slow bleed from veins between the brain and the skull.  As we age, our brain shrinks and stretches out these veins.  The shrinking also leaves more room for the brain to move around during a fall or car accident or any trauma.  So, the older someone is (especially over 60), the more vigilant they need to be about these slow bleeds.

You fall.  You get up.  You make sure no one saw the graceful move.  You feel a little bruised but fine.  What now?

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