On Moving, Eating Vegan, and Other Very Important Nothings.

Well, blow me down.  I really thought a dietary experiment would make me keep up with my blog more consistently…or did I?  The truth is that I rarely blog unless I have a lot of extra time on my hands, or if something happens that I feel requires instant discussion.

And usually in the in-between spaces all of that stuff that requires instant discussion – such as the Occupy Movement, for example – ends up spinning my head into such a wound-up ball of brainstring that I talk myself out before I manage to get my little fingers to the keyboard.  Which is probably a good thing. You don’t want to hear my political rants any more than I want to hear about your BMs.

Here are some of the highlights of Random Things That Happened in the Gap:

1.) It rained.  Not just a hopeful sprinkle, but two or three days of good, hard, ground-soaking, blessed rain.  The earth, which was dry and pale and crumbly and cracked in wide swaths, suddenly gave birth to all the post-shower wonders one sees in dry climate such as this.  Evening star rain lilies sprouted and bloomed overnight, nodding their pristine white heads en mass in approval of the much-needed moisture.  The roadsides were jam-packed with the little beauties.  Slower growing vegetation popped up, too, producing a wonder of new flora to explore and memorize.

2.) The temperature dropped.  Welcome, autumn.  I’ve been waiting for you.  Pumpkin seeds were baked.  Candles were lit.  Fleece hoodies were pulled from plastic bags and reunited with the rest of the clothes.

3.) We moved. Again.  Now we’re back at Cleveland’s house – right where we started when we landed here in Austin, and in my humble opinion, exactly where we belong at this juncture.

4.) I did the vegan thing for a couple weeks pretty faithfully and lost a lot of weight.  I felt good, but got sick in the middle of the experiment with whatever summer bug was circulating, and due to what I thought was a prolonged recovery time, switched back to my normal diet and almost immediately felt better.  I think I might have been missing some of the essential nutrients my body needs, so when I begin again I will more carefully research exactly what food combinations I need to properly sustain my body.

A couple interesting things happened while I was eating an exclusively plant-based diet.  For instance, I knew I was eating too much soy, but it’s such an easy fall-back (and I love the taste of it) that I got lazy and found myself eating soy milk and tofu every day, multiple times a day.  Soy contains isoflavones, which are naturally-occurring chemicals that mimic estrogen.  When men eat too much, it can cause the condition most of us know as “man boobs.”  When women eat too much, the hormonal imbalance created can manifest itself in a lot of different ways.  For me, it caused whiskers to grow on my chin.  Not like beard whiskers, but two long, white hairs that grew straight out.  And they continued showing up until I knocked off the soy consumption.  So, yeah, that wasn’t a very desirable effect, albeit interesting.  It also served as a reminder for me to pay attention to what I’m putting in my body.  Not all signals are so clear; I should be thankful for such a public display of my body’s dysfunction.

During that time, however, my love for creative cooking was reinvigorated.  I can munch on plants all day and not really miss a thing, but coming up with hearty dishes to satisfy my carnivorous Tytron was a much bigger challenge.  He, too, said he felt satisfied and full after eating, and that his energy levels were sustained and even.  Score.  I came up with some pretty impressive little dishes and learned a lot about nutrition.  I consider myself to be fairly well-versed in biological functions and how food affects body on a cellular level, but some of the things I learned were pretty profound.

Because I’m bad at wrapping up (I’m one of those people who either walks away and you’ve no idea I’d gone until you start looking for me, or I say goodbye for a full twenty minutes until it’s really just played out and you’re desperate for me to leave) I will close with this website, which is simply an amazing resource for anyone who cares about food.  Type some random shit in, and I’ll bet you an imaginary dollar that it’s in the database.

http://nutritiondata.self.com/

Ok, bye.

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