Thursday, April 18, 2013

Wellness Wednesday, April 18

Just a couple of quick things tonight . . .

First, I saw this on Facebook yesterday, and thought I would pass it along, for anyone who has trouble remembering how to store their produce.


  There are a lot of things on this list that I don’t really eat (I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned that I’m a really picky eater), but of the ones I do, I’m mostly in agreement on the storage practice.  The only one that surprised me was apples.  I have never refrigerated my apples, and they don’t keep them cold at the grocery stores.  I did a quick Google search after I saw this, and it seems once they are picked and ready for transport, they are refrigerated all along the line, so I wonder why they aren’t kept in the cooler at the store?  Obviously there are no health dangers to keeping them at room temp, or I’d have had some problems long ago, but maybe they would keep better/longer if I stuck them in the fridge.  I’ll have to give it a try.  In most cases, I actually prefer my fruit at room temperature, but if it would make my apples crisper and juicier, it might be worth having them cold.

And, speaking of keeping things fresh in the fridge . . . Last month, I told you about my salad in a jar experiment.  Well, I haven’t made a second batch yet, so it obviously didn’t bowl me over with its wonder, but it actually did work out fairly decently.  The reports I’d read before I tried it myself said that the salad would stay fresh for 7-10 days in the canning jar, which seemed incredible.  And, I have to say, I didn’t get results quite that good.  Up until late in the third day, I’d say there was no discernible difference in freshness, which I figure is still at least a day longer than you’d get if you just stuck a salad in a plastic bowl.  And on day four, it was still very edible, though I’d say there was a noticeable difference in crispness of the lettuce.  And, honestly, that’s the last one I ate.  But, by day six, it really wasn’t looking so good.  You could see that it had lost quite a bit of volume and shrunk down further in the jar, and there was a small layer of liquid at the bottom, so things were definitely losing their juice.  I’d have to assume the salad would not have been particularly appealing at that point, though my guess is it would have tasted okay, just not great texture.  But, if that was at day six, I also have to assume that anything longer than a week really wouldn’t be so great.  And, in case you’re wondering—as I was—how long you can leave the jars in the fridge before the lettuce actually starts to brown, I didn’t reach that point.  At the two week mark, Brian had been looking at it long enough and decided to toss it out.  He reports that there was an incredible build up of pressure that he thought could be dangerous, so he tossed it all out, jar and all.  But, except for that whole shrinking down thing, the salad inside still looked okay!  So, while I wouldn’t call it a resounding success, it’s not a bad way to have a handy meal ready to go.  Oh, I will say, though, that I ate mine here at home, so I poured it into a bowl after shaking it up.  It would be sort of a handy way to have a portable meal, too, but you’d have to find yourself an extra long fork, as the regular ones don’t quite reach.  But that’s a minor thing.

And, one other follow up:  green coffee bean extract.  I’ve been taking them about a month now, and I’m about ready to say they’re a keeper.  As I reported before, they do seem to help me maintain weight, even when I’m eating really badly (read: too much junk!).  And, if I forget to take them for a couple of days, I seem much more prone to gain an ounce or two (or ten) here and there.  But then, when I get back on the pills, whatever I may have gained comes right back off.  The only side effect I’ve noticed is actually a benefit for me: regularity.  (Warning: potential TMI ahead.)  Really, what I should probably say is they seem to help provide daily regularity.  While I struggle with constipation more than I think is probably normal, for the most part, my movements are fairly regularly timed, they’re just pretty far apart.  Before taking the coffee bean, my normal was about every three days.  As far back as I can remember I’ve never been an every day person, so that’s regular for me.  But, with these pills, I go every day.  And not in any kind of uncontrollable fashion, or anything, just a normal movement, but more frequently.  Honestly, that probably has the most to do with helping me maintain weight, but that’s okay.  While I was quite accustomed to the twice a week routine, I have to admit that I seem to feel a little better with increased frequency.  I don’t drink coffee, but I know some folks say their morning cup has that effect on them, so maybe coffee is just a laxative in general.  I’m not a chemist, so I couldn’t speculate, but from my own experience I can guess that it’s not the caffeine, as I practically pump that stuff directly into my veins.  In the old days, via soda, and now mostly from tea.  Oh, and that’s something that I think is really important to point out—even though I do get quite a bit of caffeine from other sources in addition to these pills, I don’t feel any jitters at all.  Anyway, I think they’ve been at least a little bit of help for me, and don’t seem to have any downsides, except the twenty bucks or so a month it’ll cost to keep taking them. 

So, that’s it for tonight.  As we’ve discussed before, sleep is a big part of wellness, too, so I shouldn’t put it off much longer.

weight loss wednesday 1-23-13








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