What Do You Know About A Reduced Sodium Diet?

Posted on February 10, 2012 by Emily

Hello, hello!  We’ve officially hit the weekend, woot!

Breakfast, which was eaten during class, was all about the fruit group.

A baggie of purple grapes,

and a can of coconut water from Goya.

There were pieces of coconut floating around inside and it was too good.  Major props to Goya, because even without the pulp this was the best coconut water in terms of texture and taste that I’ve ever had!  Minus coconut water drunk straight from the coconut of course.

My morning was a little nerve-wracking because I had a class presentation, but at least since I don’t mind public speaking all I really had to worry about was knowing my stuff.  Just in case though, I rocked the Cameron from “House” look to make myself feel more confident.

It worked; everyone told us we did a great job!  Not to toot my own horn totally to toot my own horn, but when I was in the library after class another student came up and told me that our presentation was the best in-class presentation she’d ever seen.  Woot!

Our topic was the reduced sodium (2g) diet.  Our teacher played the patient and a fellow student and I had to give her the diet education.  I had a whole analogy about your viens being your pipes and your heart being your pump that I thought was pretty compelling (toot, toot).  I can’t share the entire handout that I made, but here are some of my tips that I thought you guys might be interested in -

When Can You Reduce Sodium On Your Own?

  • In the kitchen –
    • Experiment with new spices and herbs for extra flavor.  Don’t buy pre-made seasonings though as most contain sodium.
    • Make your own soup instead of buying canned.  If you do buy canned look for a low sodium variety and/or dilute each serving with water.
    • Replace canned vegetables with fresh or frozen varieties.
    • Replace soy sauce with balsamic vinegar.
    • Make your own microwavable entrees by making large batches of meals and freezing single portions in freezer-safe containers.
    • Use a homemade hummus in place of cheesy or cream-based sauces.
    • At the table –
      • Say goodbye to the salt shaker, sprinkle fresh lemon juice over chicken, fish, or vegetables instead.
      • Replace a glass of milk with water or unsweetened iced tea.
      • Replace condiments that are high in sodium with homemade salsa.
      • Top your salad with chunks of avocado instead of bacon bits.  While you’re at it, replace store-bought dressings with oil and vinegar.
      • Instead of a slice of cheese, spread a Tbsp of tahini (sesame paste) on your sandwich.
      • For crunch, snack on baby carrots instead of potato chips.
      • Sprinkle your popcorn with cinnamon or chili powder instead of salt.

After class I spent an agonizing hour in the library finding an article for an upcoming paper, then had to hurry home to make it to 1:30pm yoga.  I stopped at Subway for a quick lunch along the way.

I did some Googling in the library and everything on my veggie delight was confirmed to be vegan.  On roasted garlic bread – lettuce, tomato, green pepper, red onion, banana pepper, extra pickles, and sweet onion sauce.  All for $2.50, woot!

Plus a piece of dark chocolate.

Lunch was good, even when shoveled in in under 10 minutes.

And I made it to yoga on time.  60 minutes of hot yoga had me feeling good.  But it wasn’t my best practice, I definitely prefer the 90 minute class because it gives me time to really warm up.  Plus, running through each pose twice means I have double the chance of actually doing each pose!  My 30-day pass expires this weekend and I’m pretty devestated.

I’ve been hanging out instead of showering since I got home, but hopefully my partner in crime doesn’t mind that I’m smelly.

Do you pay attention to how much sodium you consume?

Posted in breakfast, lunch | Tagged fruit, workout, grapes, veggies, sandwich, peppers, product review, chalk, coconut | Leave a comment

Let It All Out

Posted on February 9, 2012 by Emily

Question first – What is currently stressing you out?  Think about it and really let it out in the comments, you’ll feel (a little) better!

I want to apologize for the on-again-off-again blogging schedule of late.  I also want to be honest with you guys about the fact that I’m having a hard time.  There’s not necessarily one big thing that’s bothering me, but there are a lot of little things that are adding up.  I am 80% sure that I believe in fate, and I am 110% that I believe that any seemingly negative thing you go through leads you to a better place.  But it’s still hard not to get a little freaked out by all the questions I have about the future.

Where will we have to move for Adam’s residency?  What if Adam doesn’t get a residency?  What if Adam’s chosen career means he’s away all the time and I’m lonely?  Should we have kids?  When should we have kids?  Should I get pregnant next year so if that I don’t get a job right away when we move I’ll get to be home with the kid until it’s all sorted out?  Should I wait to have kids until I’m established in my job?  How do women with full-time jobs breast feed?  How do you make an impression at your job if you excuse yourself every hour to pump and are also already 28 years old and starting out in a brand new field?  What if I can’t find a job?  What if the career path I’m on isn’t the one I want?  What do I want to do with my life?

And to be honest, the above questions are only a snapshot of all the things I’ve been worrying about.  It’s hard not to feel a little defeated when I can’t do anything proactive (at the moment) to answer those questions.  Sometimes you just have to have hope/faith/optimism and wait it out.

Sometimes – like last night – you have to eat a veggie sub and a bucket of french fries and sit on the couch watching old episodes of “Family Guy.”  But then the next morning you have to do your hair and put on your comfy-yet-sexy shoes.

So that’s what I did!

And in my comfy-yet-sexy shoes, I drove to school early and made my way through a big stack of school work.  I haven’t stopped working since, and bit by bit, I haven’t stopped feeling a little better, a little more in control.

The theme for my meals today was – late.  Breakfast was at 10, lunch was at 5, and dinner was at 9.  My late breakfast was eaten in the computer lab while I worked.

Holy frick I love reusing containers so much  I over-served Adam’s lunches for this week so that reused cheese container held a half serving he’d left behind.  In the mix was penne pasta, roasted zucchini and yellow squash, sautéed mushrooms, spinach, diced tomatoes, marinara sauce, and a drizzle of olive oil.

It was yumtastic; I’ve been a good wife this week!

Also helping me get back my happy, clinic went really well this afternoon.  We are starting to do SOAP notes and learning more about what RDs actually do helps a lot to relieve my anxiety.  Plus, I screened patient who agreed to do another round of diabetic diet education.  I can’t really say much about clinic (thanks HIPPA), but so far all of my patients have been really nice.

When we got back to campus it was time for late lunch.

Not cottage cheese*, another reusable.  *I may not have been eating a very healthy diet lately but I have been sticking to the vegan challenge at least.  And no soda for another 3 days either.

In the container were leftovers from Monday’s dinner; brown rice, roasted broccoli, and Asian Orange Tofu Bake.

Continuing the citrus theme, I had a navel orange.

And a piece of dark chocolate for dessert.

When we got out of class at 8 I drove a friend home and then hurried to make dinner.

Purple grapes.

And a Sandwich Thin with mustard, roasted garlic hummus, and 4 oz of raw tempeh.

I wasn’t expecting much but this sandwich was goo-ood.

This post took me awhile to write, but it felt good to put it all out there.  Thanks for ”listening,” seriously.  I’ve got a low-sodium diet education presentation tomorrow and I’m still riding a productivity high so I’ll probably burn the midnight oil today.

Hope everyone is having a good week!

Posted in about, breakfast, dinner, lunch | Tagged about, citrus, grapes, greens, leftovers, mushroom, pasta, rice, sandwich, squash, tempeh, tofu, vegan, veggies | 9 Comments

Window Shopping Wednesdays

Posted on February 8, 2012 by Emily

I am not much of a shopper, much to my mother’s chagrin. The woman can spend days at the mall, while I start to feel itchy after just a few hours. It’s not that I’m not materialistic, I totally am, it’s just that the thought of adding more stuff to my life makes it hard to breathe. But I like the idea of things. So I’m an avid window shopper. I browse catalogs I’ll never buy from and hold my breathe when I pass the window at J.Crew. So while I’m stuck at school on Wednesdays, I thought we could have some fun via blog. Let’s window shop!

Here’s what I am coveting for Valentine’s Day -

1.  The heart key chain bottle-opener from UO.

I find that you never regret a bottle-opener key chain.  The need for one doesn’t come up often, but when it does you feel like a totally bad ass boy scout.  Plus this one is adorable.

2.  The Watermelon Ice Dress from Anthropologie.

I’m afraid that this is almost too precious.  But I love the cap sleeves and eyelet.

3.  Strawberries and cream malted milk balls from Oh!Nuts.


It’s becoming possible that I will include a malted milk ball variety in every WSW!  But strawberries and cream sounds like the perfect foil to the malt center.  And these are swirly red to boot.

4.  The Daydreamer LA Solid Tulip Back Tee from UO, in red.

The back of this is super cute, but the sleeves are even cuter!  I adore the back window trend but since I’m pretty busty I usually can’t play along; this shirt looks like there’s bra coverage.  And either way, this would still look pretty good with a cami layered underneath.

5.  The Dark Red Lace Skater Dress from Dorthy Perkins.

How can you not love a red lace dress?  The cut of this is fun too.  I’m not sure where I’d wear it, but I’d definitely pair it with my black Steve Madden heels.

What are you giving to your Valentine this year?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged window shop wednesday | 1 Comment

Tropical Tapioca Panacea

Posted on February 8, 2012 by Emily

I love hot yoga but it’s a pain in the neck, literally.  I felt fine on Monday night, just like I might have pushed my back a little too far, and fine all through the day on Tuesday.  But then when I got home from clinic last night I was so sore I could barely move.  I’m not sure why I took so long to feel the pain, but it came on strong.  Even today I still feel pretty awful!

Breakfast was a serving of Quaker Oatmeal Squares with Silk Unsweetened Almond Milk.

Plus a naval orange for vitamin C.

I’ve got my first test of the semester this afternoon and I am not feeling ready.  Fingers crossed!

For lunch I packed a jam jar of one of this weekend’s kitchen efforts, Tropical Tapioca Pudding.

This pudding was inspired by the great vegan tapioca pudding you used to be able to get at the co-op.  I think my version is pretty great too.  The pudding has the perfect balance of chew and cream and the bananas are little pillowy clouds floating throughout!

Tropical Tapioca Pudding, serves 4

  • 1/2 cup small-pearl tapioca
  • 13.66 oz can light coconut milk (aka 1 and 2/3 cup)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 medium bananas, sliced
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  1. Place tapioca in a bowl with enough warm water to cover completely and soak for two hours.
  2. After 2 hours, drain tapioca.
  3. Combine coconut milk, sugar, salt, and drained tapioca in a small pot over medium-low heat.
  4. Cook for 15 minutes, stirring constantly.
  5. Add banana slices to the pot and cook another 5 minutes, stirring carefully.  Cook until tapioca are translucent.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
  7. Move to a covered container and cool in the fridge for 1 hour before serving.

Have you ever tried tapioca pudding?  What about boba (large pearl tapioca that are placed in cold drinks and sucked up through a special straw)?

Posted in breakfast, lunch | Tagged banana, citrus, coconut, sweet, vegan | Leave a comment

A Round Meal

Posted on February 7, 2012 by Emily

Breakfast was very well rounded.

A serving each of Multigrain Cheerios o’s, All Bran Bran Buds balls, and Wegman’s Berry Corn Crunch spheres.

With Silk Unsweetened Almond Milk poured on top.

The flavors and textures in the mix rounded out nicely, with good ratios of sweet to bran and crunch to puff.

Lunch – a very early lunch because of Statistics