Monday, October 28, 2013

"Give us this Day"

Our daily salt-less, butter-less, whole grain with honey home made bread...

Yes folks at home, we finally got our bread machine, (a Panasonic SD2501), that's just too easy to use and yesterday I made my very first loaf.

Here's a pic P snapped of the lil guy, still warm:
I as usual, tweaked the recipe some and I couldn't be happier with the results; a cloud-like interior and a perfectly chewy and delightful crust.

Here in France, if you want saltless bread or baguette, your only choice is white, real white and as I'm trying to make everything I put in my mouth as healthful as possible, well, that just wasn't cutting it any longer.

I shall now share the recipe for anyone out there interested in making one of these lil darlings.

I call it "Tuscan", as in that area of Italy, one is hard-pressed to find any bread made with salt.  That's thanks to a pope back in the 1500's who slapped a huge tax on salt and instead of paying it, the Tuscans just ran with it and started making all their bread sans-salt. 

Juan's Tuscan Whole Grain Bread

1 tbsp of active yeast
500 grams of whole wheat flour, (this one had some nice seeds in it too)
1 tbsp of Acacia honey, (blended with the luke warm water first)
2 tbsp of EV olive oil
370ml H20

Into the bread machine goes first the yeast, topped with the flour,  followed by all the wet ingredients.  Press ye ole start button and wait.

Gonna have me a nice thick slice with a lil Philly Light and organic scrambled eggs 'n sauteed garlic for lunch, methinks.  Mmmmmmm...

Have a sweet day, All, et bon ap!


: J

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

A "Private" Stoning

Hello again, Readers,

Poppin' in to share with you all that I'm finally outta the tunnel--which I thought I was out of last week but nay, the cat came back, even scratchier and meaner.

And by cat I mean MAJOR flank pain, abdominal aching, loss of appetite and generally just feeling like poo in and out for two weeks.

Twice, (strangely both times on Saturdays), I came close to checking myself back into the hospital and then happily, I'd be on the upswing again the next day.

Yesterday, after sending my Neph a pic I took in the loo.  Yes, a pee pic.  He surmized that likely, I had been going though Renal Colic aka kidney stone(s).  He also said that as I was feeling so much better that I had likely "evacuated" it.

I love medical terms.  "Everybody!!! Get the HELL ouuuuuuuut!!!"

And I certainly AM feeling much more average again.

So delightfully average in fact, (for these days), that this morning, I hoofed it a few good km's to and from a housewares store to buy not one but THREE new cushions for the couch.

I must admit the joints were not happy with me half way home, but I pushed on and it was great to do something normal after being so down for the count since Canada.  (Also due to a mofo sciatica attack that is also finally fini.)

I've been reading up on kidney stones some today and wasn't overly keen to note that once a person has one episode, it's likely to happen again.

And I already follow such a renal-friendly diet too.

Perhaps being on all this high dose calcium and/or the D3 for so long have taken their tolls?

As far as I know, stones don't run the family.

Ahhhhhh, the roller coaster that is this MPA-->CKD bastard...

In any case, I have officially upped my water intake and surely the resumed pooch walks will help.  I missed walking with Ole Yeller, ('cause he's deaf and rather loud at times and yes, yellow too... ; ).

as always, +++vibes 'n take good care o' yer beans,

; J

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Tests you can't study for...

Hi, once more, dear Readers,

I know it's been quite a spell since I posted anything but that has been largely due to my being rather offline for the month of September due to traveling to not only the South of France, but more recently, to my precious Canada in the Rocky Mountains.

Here's a snap of the view just a short hike from my folks' doorstep, SUPA-NATCH!

Just before leaving for Canada in mid-Sept. I had an appointment with my Nephrologist who noted my creaky and pained movements, (the app was a late afternoon one, and I was in my usual wean down Prednisone state), and so he ordered for me a bone density scan as Prednisone, (among other possible horrid side effects), can lead to osteoporosis, due to calcium leaching.

This as one could imagine, kinda put a back-of-the-mind wet blanket on the whole trip what with the simmering worry about it and that if I had it, how I'd handle the meds commonly used to treat it--which are NOT kidney-friendly.

So yesterday, I had the scan done and MUCH TO MY UTTER JOY, the results were totally normal!  Sure I may have major joint pains daily but they are so wonderfully NOT from osteoporosis!

HAD to share that with you all here.

Also wanted to share how the two week trip to Canada actually went, for anyone out there in a similar medical boat wanting to travel but at the same time, wary of the stress of it all.

In a nutshell, it all went much better than I had anticipated.  And yes, I wore a mask for the duration of both trans-Atlantic flights which I was extra-glad for doing, as sitting right behind us was a very loud whooping-type cougher who darned near puked after each attack.  And she by the sounds of it all wasn't even covering her sputtering mouth.  Ewwwww....

To make these travels easier and after running it by my doc, I decided not to wean down from Prednisone that month to minimize the pains and fatigue and simply give me more chi to be able to enjoy myself with so many missed friends and family members.

It all went off without a hitch too.  K, with a couple of evenings that were rather hard, which I chalked up to jetlag and simple travel stress and I bounced back the next day each time.

And just BEING with so many nears and dears whom I have missed sooooo much over this past challenging, cloistered year was medicine in and of itself, I'm sure.  Not to mention that fresh, clean and wonderful mountain air.  Here's another shot I took on a different hike out with P in that paradise:

In other news of the dietary variety, due to my Neph trippling my ACE-inhibitors, (as they not only lower blood pressure, but aid in kidney filtration), I will soon find out if this will translate into even more retention of potassium in the ole blood stream.

Hoping HARD that it won't as that would mean my having to, (and just after getting those foods back in rotation), start to further limit high-k sources like: beans, chick peas, nuts, dark leafy greens, etc.

Hoping too that it won't steal even more of my voice on a near daily basis either.  Still not sure about all that as it's not every day and not always the same hoarseness.

To be sure, my Neph has prescribed a trip to an ear/nose/throat specialist, who will hopefully be able to iron that out.  It might just be allergies, though I've never had any and the hoarseness came on when I started taking those BP meds so--we'll seeee...

So voila, a long over due post that will hopefully inspire fellow paranoid MPA-er's and other immuno-suppressed people to travel if they so choose.

Tomorrow I'll have my monthly blood and urine test results back to see just how the upping of BP meds has affected my potassium levels.  And how my waning lymphocytes are doing too.

Now, time for another lie down on my brand new, nice and large heating pad that arrived the very day I returned home from Canada.   Yay.

Have a sweet day, All,

: J