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About jent103

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  1. jent103

    Join A 2016 Whole9 Challenge!

    I don't know if this is the best/correct/etc approach, but: I don't live near a beach, and I don't lay out in the sun generally. Most of my outdoor exposure is either in 20-minute-or-less increments (eg, walking across my university campus for a meeting) or hiking in the woods. I use a facial moisturizer with sunscreen, but otherwise I don't worry too much about it unless I'm on a beach vacation. I work a desk job, so I figure if anything I could use more sun and vitamin D. If I worked outdoors or was at the beach every weekend, I'd think harder about a different approach. I don't hardly tan at all anyway (English blood - if I get anything it's a burn!) so the aesthetics are more or less a non-issue for me!
  2. jent103

    Join A 2016 Whole9 Challenge!

    For this native Southerner, humidity is nature's moisturizer. I'm feeling glad and confident about this theme! The others I've not felt terribly successful at for various reasons, but this one I'm feeling good and excited about. It's warm enough, and my schedule should be flexible enough, to be outside a lot around my city this month; I'm really lucky to live somewhere where I have three hilly parks with plenty of wooded trails in my city limits. And I have a quick trip to Yosemite scheduled at the end of the month before a conference in the Bay Area, which I'm super excited about (if anyone has any Yosemite tips, I'd love to hear them!). I've realized over the last year how important it is for my mind and soul to be in nature on a regular basis (somewhat of a revelation, considering I did not at all grow up in an outdoorsy family). I'm looking forward to doing that as much as possible this summer. As a kick start, I spent Memorial Day at Rock Island State Park - my first trip. So beautiful! Christina, I'm glad your recovery is going better! That's great and welcome news!
  3. jent103

    Pecan Oil

    I haven't tried this, but my guess would be that the pecan oil would be pretty strong tasting in the mayo. The reason most recipes recommend something like light olive oil (as opposed to extra virgin) is because it's a neutral flavor. Now, maybe it's a strong taste that would be delicious, I don't know! But I'd be pretty hesitant.
  4. jent103

    Starting May 17 : Whole30 without Eggs

    Welcome! I hope this is a great tool for you in feeling your best! Don't. I do almost all my prep on the weekends. It is a chunk of time then, yes, but it makes the week SO much easier. People do this in different ways depending on your circumstances - I live alone and don't mind eating the same thing all week, so I tend to make one big dish for lunches and another for dinners and just eat on them all week. But you're cooking for lots of people, and some people really have to have variety, so you/they may do it differently. The key is just to think ahead and do your prep work as efficiently as possible. Looking at Mel Joulwan's web site is a great suggestion above ( - she's got lots of strategies and delicious meals, plus she did the autoimmune protocol for a bit (no eggs, among other things), which means she has quite a few eggless recipes as well.
  5. jent103

    Join A 2016 Whole9 Challenge!

    Best of luck, Christina! That's a scary weekend - glad you're back home and taking care of yourself! kirkor, I drink decaf occasionally and have found, just like with the regular stuff, it depends on the beans. If I get good quality decaf I enjoy it just as much as my morning regular. (I should maybe think about switching the morning to decaf too... but I have so much fun trying different kinds of beans! There's not as much variety in decaf.) The kind of nebulous goals like "reduce stress" are hard for me to a) remember to work on and decide if I've "progressed" at all. I'm a type-A, quantitative type of person. I did meditate/quiet time just about every weekday morning (and most Saturdays), which is a habit I want to keep going. Sleep continues to be a work in progress; I'm getting more on average the last couple of weeks, but definitely still room for improvement. All that to say, I'm glad for a somewhat more quantitative goal in May! I already do power yoga twice a week (typically) and try to get out for a short hike at least once a week as often as I can - I'm very lucky to live somewhere with several trails within 30 minutes of my house. So I'll definitely keep that up, but decided to set a goal of at least 10,000 steps on the ol' Fitbit every day this month, whether I have dedicated exercise time or not. Given that I am tied to screens all day at work and commute via car, this is a challenge, but it's not an insurmountable one and now that the weather is warmish I don't have a valid excuse. I do have a sit/stand desk, but standing doesn't get you steps! (Neither does cubicle dancing. Believe me. I've tried. The cube is just too small to move enough!)
  6. jent103


    I usually just opt for a taco salad - way easier to eat than a lettuce wrap. For meat, Mel Joulwan's taco meat or carnitas are both excellent. And definitely bring that avocado!
  7. jent103

    Bloating from Chicken.. or any poultry?

    Definitely check the things others have suggested, but: I have two friends whose bodies don't care much for chicken, and mine doesn't care for turkey, so what you're wondering is certainly not unheard of.
  8. jent103

    Join A 2016 Whole9 Challenge!

    Lucie, I totally do this too - sometimes I can stop and laugh at myself, sometimes not! It always reminds me of that Friends episode where Phoebe gets so mad at Ross and can't figure out why.
  9. jent103

    Join A 2016 Whole9 Challenge!

    MissMunchie, I've heard of that author via the Minimalists - how are you liking the book generally? Good for you for surviving well right now! That's a lot going on! I've kind of fallen into the practice of meditation accidentally! During Lent, I tried "praying the hours" (it's a centuries-old church tradition but the first time I'd ever done it; basically stopping to pray several times during the day). I haven't been doing it as strictly since Easter, but I did really get used to getting up in the morning and first thing, lighting a candle and just taking a few minutes, and have still been doing that at least during the week. That sense of ritual and a few minutes of peace and quiet and connection are something I really need to cultivate, I think, and will help me with stress. Things have been going okay on that point - I finally got my dang taxes done and made travel arrangements for a couple of upcoming trips, which were all things that have been taking up mental space!
  10. jent103

    Join A 2016 Whole9 Challenge!

    I thought this (short) article was interesting, given last month's focus! Headline: "An insurance giant pays its employees to sleep"
  11. jent103

    1st post, Epic Bison bars?

    I like them, but they are an odd texture. They're also expensive enough to keep me from buying them to consume on a regular basis, which is helpful. I mainly use them for traveling and rarely eat them otherwise. My Whole Foods carries them; if you have one or another local source, you wouldn't have to commit to buying a whole box online.
  12. jent103

    What qualifies as a problem?

    It's not so much about diagnosing an official sensitivity as figuring out what the consequences for a certain food are for you. Is feeling a little bloated worth that ice cream for you? Only you can answer that, and my answer might be different from yours, and that's great. For me, ice cream/milk are definitely more problematic than butter or a sprinkling of Parmesan. It could be the quantity (you get a lot more dairy in a bowl of ice cream than in a pat of butter!) or it could be the chemical makeup, I don't know; I'm not that concerned about the specifics. I just know that ice cream has to be really Worth It, but a little cheese on a salad I don't worry much about. I like your re-reintro plan to see how the specific types of dairy affect you. (Some people do this with grains too - corn might be different from rice might be different from wheat.)
  13. Oh yeah, chimichurri is awesome! Here's a recipe if you need one.
  14. Have you tried to make homemade mayo? It's my FAVORITE. I, too, hate coconut and olives. I like avocado now, but didn't really when I started eating this way. I got a lot of fats from mayo (plain and/or made into various dips/aiolis/dressings), extra virgin olive oil, and the occasional handful of nuts.
  15. jent103

    Join A 2016 Whole9 Challenge!

    Well, as you can all surmise, "sleep month" was a pretty big non-success for me. There were reasons (I wasn't just staying up on Facebook every night!), but the reality is that all the reasons in the world don't give me the health (physical, mental, emotional) that would come with enough sleep. And since sleep and stress are my two biggest issues right now, combining them in April would do me a world of good! So, at the beginning of a new month, that's my plan. 1. Prioritize sleep, including making sure I have enough time for it (shooting for an average of 7.5-8 hours a night, with a minimum of 7), and getting back to the bedtime routine I had started before a freelance project and its accompanying laptop screens took over my evenings! 2. Focus on being present in the moment and not ruminating - Lucie, I could have written much of what you said! I'm in my head a LOT. Sometimes it serves me well, but often it just takes me out of the moment and keeps me from living fully. So: breathing. Focusing. Less thinking about what might happen and more observing what is happening. 3. Less procrastinating on things that are causing me stress. Case in point: now that that freelance project is done (for the moment), finally do my taxes and clean my house this weekend! Then, take care of some outstanding summer travel details that are hanging over my head, so I can relax and just anticipate the trips. I was at a conference last month and one of the speakers said that for some people (me included), thinking about doing something takes as much energy as actually doing it. That was pretty eye-opening to me. When I ruminate on how I need to do my taxes or whatnot, I'm actually spending double (triple... quadruple...) the energy that I really need to. Of course, if I suddenly think about how I need to do my taxes while I'm at work, it's not like I can just go do them, but I can tell myself "look, there's no point in worrying about that now. Set a time on your calendar and deal with it then." Happy spring, everyone (in the northern hemisphere, at least!), and may the force be with us all!