Nine Cups A Day – Day One

Day one wasn’t as hard as I suspected. It’s not that I never eat fruits and vegetables, I think I wasn’t giving myself enough credit for how much I was eating. Probably at least five cups per day, on average. Of course there are days I only eat a cup or two. But other days I probably get six or seven or more. So adding two to four more cups wasn’t much of a challenge. The biggest challenge seemed to be the sulfur-rich vegetables, which, admittedly, I avoided.

Once upon a time, I ate carrots, cucumbers, peppers, broccoli and cauliflower several days a week for an afternoon snack. Then I couldn’t eat peppers anymore. And then I tried to limit things like veggie dip. And without those few tablespoons of dip, I didn’t want raw vegetables anymore. So it was kind of nice getting back to eating some raw veggies. I did miss that. I used to pair raw veggies with any number of things. Yesterday I just had my veggies with a dip made of cream cheese, salsa and garlic powder. Win!

So, the day went well. But it was also kind of gassy and bloaty which is the reason I’d been avoiding broccoli and cauliflower. Once I stopped eating it semi-regularly, it’s like I lost my tolerance for it, even cooked. I’d wake up in the middle of the night with those gas pains that feel like a heart attack. And if I’d add just a few pieces to a salad, I’d feel blah all day. So, like a normal avoiding person, I avoided.

Anyway, that’s the background of that. And I’m excited to add these vegetables back because I did some limited/unfocused research (results below), and am excited to get the health benefits of these vegetables.

So, what did I have?

  • Berries (frozen and fresh): 2 1/2 cups
  • Spinach (raw): 1 1/2 cups
  • Kale (cooked): 1 cup
  • Lettuce (plain old iceberg, which many people don’t count, but I do): 1/2 cup
  • Grapefruit (fresh): 1 cup
  • Carrots (raw): 1/2 cup
  • Broccoli: 3/4 cup (1/2 cup raw, 1/4 cup roasted)
  • Cauliflower: 3/4 cup (1/2 cup raw, 1/4 cup roasted)
  • Banana (fresh-frozen, and fresh): 1 cup
  • Onion and Garlic (cooked): 1/4 cup
  • Tomatoes (canned and salsa): 1/2 cup
  • Total: 10 1/4 cups

Summarized:

  • Greens: 3 cups
  • Sulfur vegetables: 1 3/4 cups
  • Colorful: 3 1/2 cups
  • Miscellaneous: 2 cups

My goal was three cups each of the first three. I fell short on the sulfur vegetables, but think I made a good decision to ease into it. As my body adapts to eating them, I’ll probably eat more, spreading them out during the day. I HATE waking up in the middle of the night feeling miserable. Not only do I feel miserable, but it impacts my sleep. And I need my sleep! I seemed to thread the needle. Enough for bloating. Not enough to be up at night (and I even ate dinner late).

So, overall, I’m happy with day one!

Other breakdowns: 

  • Fruits: 5 cups
  • Vegetables: 5 1/4 cups

More vegetables than fruits (by a hair). And I even put tomatoes in the fruit group. I’m happy with this.

Sulfur-Rich Vegetables

I did a little more research on the sulfur vegetables. The Wahls stuff I read says the sulfur helps push the toxins out of your body. Mark’s Daily Apple had a little bit of information on why to eat sulfur-rich vegetables.  It wasn’t as in-depth as I’d hoped, so I specifically researched a list of and benefits of the two types of sulfur-rich vegetables: brassica and allium.

Brassica

  • Rutabaga
  • Turnips
  • Kohlrabi
  • Cabbage
  • Collard Greens (which I’d put in the greens group)
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels Sprouts

Brassica Health Benefits

  • High amounts of vitamin C and soluable fiber
  • Potent anti-cancer properties (reduced with boiling – but not with steaming (especially for 3-4 minutes), microwaving or stir-frying)
  • Compound in brassica is a potent modulator of the innate immune response system with potent antiviral, antibacterial and anticancer activity
  • Improves eye health
  • Lowers risk of stroke
  • Rich in vitamin K, which improves inflammatory response

Some Considerations

  • The same compound that modulates the innate immune response is also an anti-androgen.
  • They also contain goitrogens, which suppress thyroid function.

Allium

  • Onions
  • Shallots
  • Garlic
  • Scallions
  • Leeks
  • Chives (not a vegetable, and contain limited health benefits compared to above)

Allium Health Benefits

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Helps with memory loss
  • Hinders tumor growth
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Reduces LDL cholesterol
  • Improves heart health
  • Helps with arthritis

Allium Health Considerations

  • Garlic can be a blood thinner
  • Might want to avoid if you have migraines

Doesn’t that make you want to run out and make a brassica/allium stirfry? Seriously, though, is there a better smell than onions and garlic cooking in butter? I’m already thinking of all the ways I can incorporate more of these vegetables.

Day One Workout

Just for the sake of reporting in on my workouts, I did 30 minutes of walking at work yesterday (I sneak in the workout room on breaks and walk at 3MPH). I also went for a 2 mile walk/run/jog. Jogging as much as I could, doing some faster running intervals when I felt like it. This was the best attempt at running in a long time. I still felt tight/clunky and am worried I’m inducing shin splints. But I think the magnesium is working! Zero full on charley horses while running. I didn’t even stop to stretch. Although my legs were the first to fatigue. I also did about 20 minutes of a workout video, which included some weight lifting. I just wasn’t feeling it. I’m going to use some of the machines in our workout room the rest of the week since I seem to be on a cardio uptick, which means I’m lifting a little less. Don’t worry, this is normal. Spring and fall always make me want to get outside more. My goal is to get into good enough running shape to maintain through the summer.

Overall Day One Summary

My energy was good yesterday. The worst part of the day was the bloating from the cauliflower and broccoli. But if that’s the worst of my problems, life is pretty good!

Tomorrow I’ll talk about either brightly colored

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