Friday, May 18, 2007

The Plan

Fear not, my friendly bloggies. Even though there are so many times when I don't want to live a long life, as exampled in my last post regarding my alarming cholesterol values, I have a plan for those rare times when a long life sounds kind of nice. After I recovered from the shock and reality of my genetics and health, I devised a new life plan with the help of my doctor.

All of the drugs are out. Firstly, for my relatives, the cholesterol fighting meds aren't very effective unfortunately and so they are unlikely to help me. Secondly, the relevant drugs are teratogenic. So that just won't work for someone who is trying to conceive, like me. Finally, the drugs are not compatible with my mood stabilizers while not trying to conceive. Because they both tweak liver function, I can't take them together. And, in my last post, some bloggie friends commented that the results may be a bit askew because I was pregnant not that long ago. I wish I could blame my former condition for the high numbers, but my own blood lipid history tells me that it isn't likely. Plus, my blood draw was carefully planned 8 weeks post-D&C. And, because the miscarriage was so early on, the mammaries and associated physiology were not at full tilt yet so they would not yet have a significant impact on my levels still 8 weeks later. So I think all the doctors (3 have been involved on this one) are right in thinking that these results indicate a serious threat to my life.

I have but one option, diet and exercise. And, since I don't do anything half-ass, I am going all out on this one. No more meat, except fish, and no more dairy. The next to go is white sugar and white breads. Let's just say that my refrigerator looks pretty bare now that I have done a full cleanse. Finally, I have to add 30 minutes of exercise a day. Let's just say that I am glad this is coming on the eve of summer. Fresh fruits and vegetables will soon flood the markets, and the sun should provide some good outdoor treks. And, so I march on. Hup, two, three, four...

35 comments:

Bumble said...

Awesome plan Nicole, and eating healthily like that and all the exercise can only improve your baby making odds! Maybe I should join you...

Carrie said...

Nicole, I've done similar (for different reasons) and have recently cut out white pasta, bread and all sugar (apart from the occasional treat) and it is tough at first BUT I do feel good.

I know it must seem hard on top of everything else. It sounds like you are going to tackle this head on.

I'm proud of you, girl.

My Reality said...

This is a great plan, Nicole. I always find it easier to eat better in the summer with all of the fresh and cheaper)produce that the summer brings.

Casey said...

Joe and I are near-vegan and eat no refined sugar or flour. Email me if you want some recipes!

Nadine said...

Sounds like a good plan and a perfect time to implement it. A lot of us could benefit from similiar actions.

Sara said...

Sounds great, Nicole. I've been a vegetarian for 11 years, and I started because I just couldn't digest meat well at all. Now I'm the only member of my family who hasn't been diagnosed with high blood pressure and high cholesterol at a young age. So you're in good company.

It's still really scary news, but I'm so glad to hear you sounding so optimistic.

ultimatejourney said...

I'm so happy to hear that you've bounced back after the initial shock and that you're fighting the problem full force. The plans sounds excellent. Best of luck to you!

BerryBird said...

That sounds like an awesome plan, Nicole. I would love to hear about some of your new recipes and what you are doing for exercise. I have a family risk, too, and I could awlways use some inspiration.

Aurelia said...

Good to see you taking charge of this whole thing! See the glass IS half-full, and not even wobbling off the edge of the table. (Grin)

I know you know all the science behind this, so I am curious about the combo of drugs being a problem. I get the tetragenic issue, but post-baby, can you really not combine the two? My MIL took the cholesterol meds, bp drugs and li.th!um every single day for 20-odd years and never had a liver problem. She may be the exception, I guess?

Also, are your Docs going to do any tests to look for current narrowing of the arteries? And just because I'm a pain in the ass, what about baby aspirin everyday? It's fine in pregnancy and TTC, can it help with this too, like some extra insurance?

Anyway, if you do find an edible calcium supplememt btw, let me know. I'm trying out a few new ones and geez they all taste like chalk! Blecchh. There must be a good one.

marlena rivers said...

wow. good for you. and i'm glad to hear you can imagine living a long life. i have that split thinking, in that i have a strong psychic sense i will live to be over 100 but often do not have much will to live. anyway you are brave and strong to go at the diet and exercise thing. pick exercise that you can enjoy!

Emilija said...

You have a great plan. I think it may also help you mental health, as well as your physical health. You are inspiring me.

Renee said...

sounds like a great plan...wish I had the willpower to join you. Maybe if I do it one step at a time. I've already caved on my no more Pepsi thing...but I can get back on the waggon.

Julia said...

Sounds like a great plan. I am a little concerned about cutting out all of your meat, especially when TTC. Did your doctors want you to get rid even of the lean chicken-type meat?

thrice said...

I think sugar has a lot more to do with high cholesterol that people think. I find that when my sugar levels are down that all of my blood test results are so much better.

I love, love sugar, but I do believe it is pure evil.

I'm worried about the severity of your plan. I do the same thing and then I lose patience. Don't be afraid to pull up, take a break and restart. Long term is the issue here. Want to go rollerblading?

Patience said...

It's great that you've got a great plan to manage it- and I'm sooo jealous that you guys have summer!!

Sara said...

A vegetarian diet can be really good for you while pregnant - although veganism is more difficult. My doctors have never been concerned, but then I eat dairy and eggs. I have a great book, Your Vegetarian Pregnancy by Holly Roberts, that offers an excellent guide to nutrients, and discusses how a healthy vegetarian diet actually much more easily captures your vitamin needs, without all the bad stuff. We know my pregnancy history isn't great, but my doctors said they're totally totally sure my diet had nothing to do with it.

The Oneliner (Christina) said...

oh man, that's a lot. you're so young. goodness. i know someone who had high cholesterol and did the south beach diet. it brought his cholesteral down so much that he could comme off of meds.
although, no sugar or red meat is pretty the south beach diet.
eating less meat always makes me feel good.
you're a tough one. you'll get there.

The Road Less Travelled said...

Well I should join you as well. I have high BP, a family history of stroke, diabetes and bad cholesterol. I sit on my ass all day and eat very badly. Maybe you can help motivate my lazy ass. Good luck!

Dream Writer said...

Good for you...I am doing a Heart healthy diet as well.

The South Beach Diet is awesome and try the americanheartassociation.org..

Keep up with my blog as I will be adding some Heart Healthy Recipes...the ones I already have on my blog are heart healthy - just use Whole Wheat Pasta!

Not so little sister said...

You go girl. I'm so glad you have a positive attitude. I want you around for a long time.

peep said...

Awesome. good for you!

The Momcaster said...

sounds like a good plan! take care of yourself!

Anns said...

I'm gonna join you on this race to health. My body just can't seem to kick back into shape on it's own post 2 m/c's... plus I'm sure getting healthy will only improve both our odds of getting pregnant. Anns xo

Renee said...

digging to china at the beach being dumb? I don't think so. Dumb is one summer it was so dry out the ground was cracking open...so I took the garden hose and tried to fill up the crack with water! That was dumb...luckily my parents never questioned the water bill.

Amanda said...

I have an acquaintance who's been vegan for more than a decade, and she gave birth to a wonderful baby girl when she 34. From what I've read it seems that vegetarians are prone to having girls. :)

Sarah said...

go you! i have a feeling you will totally rock this plan. and i hope you find it's not as hard as it seems. it just takes some adjusting. there are still loads of yummy foods you can enjoy. good luck!

oh, one thing that really helped me during my cholesterol busting diet was The Mediteranean Vegan Kitchen by Donna Klein. Many wonderful cholesterol free recipes that even seriously meat-hungry husbands like.

Baby Blues said...

Sounds like a great plan. Good luck!

hope548 said...

I have those great genetics too! Lucky us. I found out several years ago that my cholesterol was borderline and I have been completely able to control it with diet and exercise. Now my HDLs rock and my LDLs are within limits. Good luck with your new plan. Just give yourself time to adjust, it's hard to stick with something when it's too drastic!

Dino aka Katy said...

good luck with the diet and exercise. Word of advise - your triglycerides are impacted by carbs. And many of our patients that do the atkinson/south beach right had great results in terms of their cholesterol.

Dino aka Katy said...

and a note on the side - meat is not always to blame. I have been a veggie since I was 12 (so 18yrs) and my lipids are sky high.

Melissa said...

Wow!
Good luck girl. Just take it one day at a time. And yes...it IS the best time of year-melons, strawberries, apples...YUM! I know you'll do great and feel better too! :)

Jackie said...

I'm so glad you came back quickly with a plan, and it sounds like a terrific plan that makes a lot of sense. We're pulling for you!

LIW (Lady In Waiting) said...

Congratulations for taking charge of the situation! We all want you to stick around for a VERY long time!

megan said...

your plan sounds like a good one. it's great timing too with the opening of farmer's markets and such, too. you can TOTALLY do this.

Ol' Lady said...

sounds like a good plan for yourself...it will help both body and mind.