Setbacks and New Beginnings

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This announcement has been a long time coming and I’ve been putting it off like paying off a sad parking ticket, but I’ve decided to put Little Bliss Nutrition on hiatus. As of last month I’m finally back in school, pursuing my passion — food and holistic health! This is only a minor setback, but I’ll be back, and hopefully as a professional Registered Dietitian.

The end goal seems miles away, but no matter how exhausting this process, the next few years will come and go whether I start or not.

When I started this blog about a year and a half ago, I was coming out of a transition place in my life. I had plans to pursue my graduate studies when I became extremely ill and had to stop. At first it was really hard watching my friends get ahead while I was taking a step backwards. But it’s a funny thing how things turn out. Getting sick lead me to seeking the help of a Dietitian/Nutritionist, which lead me to sharing my experience and ideas on this blog, which now has lead me to changing my career plans to holistic health.

I have plans of where I’d like to take my writing and cooking on this blog, but for now I’m taking time off to focus on school and work. I’ll be posting short thingamajigs to my blog Facebook page. You can follow there or enter your email in the side bar to get notified when I return. Until then, thanks for all your support, and as always..

Allergic to Chocolate?

When I was younger, my mother swore that I was allergic to chocolate. I’d break out into hives and it just wasn’t pretty, so she banned me from eating any form of it. No Halloween candy as a kid. It was a rough life. As I got older, the hives stopped coming and I started feeding my chocolate indulgence again. Life was great and I couldn’t be happier until a year ago the hives returned. I chalked it up to other things I was eating, mainly because I was in denial. Not being able to eat chocolate might as well mean not living, right?

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So before I went into full panic attack mode in fetal position and started crying,I asked my nutritionist at the time to test me for Cocoa on my MRT (Mediator Release Test). The results came back and showed I WASN’T ALLERGIC!

Green: Non-reactive Yellow: Moderately Reactive Red: Reactive
Green: Non-reactive Yellow: Moderately Reactive Red: Reactive

So I naturally did what anyone would do, I went to town and bought CHOCOLATE.

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And then of course the next day, I broke out again. I felt betrayed. Were my test results wrong?

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I looked at the back of the packaging on all my chocolate bars and realized all the added fillers like SOY, which I’m highly allergic to, and other weird things I couldn’t pronounce were on the ingredients list. So I hadn’t been eating real chocolate this whole time, I felt duped by the chocolate companies, and a little relieved. And it turns out after buying organic choclate, things were alright after that. The End.

Moral of the story is that if something isn’t working out for you, try to find another solution. There’s always another way around. If you feel like your skin wreaks havoc after eating chocolate, maybe try picking up the organic kind. These are some of my favorites:

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Tastes just like a CRUNCH bar

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This post is a part of The Daily Post Daily Prompt: Happy Endings

Keep Calm and Make Soap

So this weekend I took a trip down to the farmer’s market to see what goodies I could find for my daily juices. I think I got there a little too late and near closing time because most of the good fruit was gone. As I was heading back out to my car I passed by a fragrant smelling booth of soaps that caught my nose, so of course I had to stop by. There I met Tom Donohue and his lovely wife Lisa who co-own CleanPeace Handcrafted Soap. I had always heard of handcrafted soaps, but had never bothered trying it. I figured my Dove body wash worked just fine. But as I spoke to Tom he informed me that a lot of commercial soaps out on the market strip the glycerin, an important element used to make soap, and use other more harsh products in its place. If you’ve read my DIY post on what I use to moisturize my dry skin, you’ll know that glycerin is the holy grail to keeping my skin moist and keeping my eczema at bay.

I could hear the passion in Tom’s voice when he spoke about how he and his wife make the soap in their own home with natural ingredients like 100% food grade oils, all vegetable, pure essential oils and skin safe fragrance oils that can be used for the face and body. After speaking with both Tom and Lisa,  I knew I had to try it out for myself.

What’s cute about CleanPeace is that their tag line is Make Suds, Not War and their brand follows the cool vibes of the 70’s. Some of the names of theirs soap bars are Woodstock, Hippie Chick, Groovy Patchouli, Garage Band, and Purple Haze. I decided to go with Almond Lovin’. I’ve written three blog posts about Almonds (How to Make Almond MilkHow to Make Almond FlourHow to Make Almond-Oat Pancakes), now this makes four, I think it’s safe to say I’m in love with this nut.

Almond Lovin’ is made with Almond, Honey, Oatmeal, and Goat’s Milk, and I am LOVIN’ Almond Lovin’. The goat’s milk has the lactic acid properties which is great for smoothing out skin tone while the oatmeal helps exfoliate. This soap is by no means harsh like other exfoliating soaps I’ve used. If anything, it’s quite the opposite. It was really cooling on my face, almost like I was toning it with milk. It provided a great lather, and left my face feeling clean, not squeegee dry, but still soft. I give it a big two groovy fingers up!

I found my soap-mate;)

If you want to check out more about handmade soaps or CleanPeace for yourself head over to http://www.cleanpeaceonline.com

Dry Skin Moisturizer DIY

There is nothing sexy about having dry, flaky skin. I can attest to this, I have Eczema, a chronic skin condition characterized by inflammation and dryness year round. Whether you have a skin condition or are just trying to stay moisturized during the dry, cold winter months there’s a few things you can do to help keep your lipid bilayer in tact and it only takes two things: Eucerin lotion and Glycerine. I’ve tried countless moisturizers advertised to help ‘ultra dry skin stay baby soft’ to no avail until one day I looked into my bathroom cupboards and had this wonderful thought dawn on me: ‘Why don’t I just mix these two together?’. And VOILA, my skin care routine has never been the same.

As you can tell from my previous posts I have a knack for opening up cupboards and having ideas jump out at me . If only this were true for other aspects in life.  Like when getting pulled over by the police for speeding, and being able to find the perfect words or jokes to say that will get you out of a ticket. Or like an exam, when you don’t know an answer, can you imagine?!

Back to the DIY. So why Eucerin lotion and Glycerine? Well.. Continue reading “Dry Skin Moisturizer DIY”

Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie

So I ate something earlier this week that caused my eczema to flare up again, and to calm down my immune system I turned to my cupboards to find a solution. Aha TURMERIC! The holy grail of antioxidants from the East! So I warmed up some water, threw together some fresh squeezed lemon and turmeric, took my first sip and spit it right back out. It was DISGUSTING! I don’t know what I was expecting, but it wasn’t that. Turmeric has a musky taste to it so I knew it wasn’t going to taste anywhere near as good as the smoothies I’ve been spoiling myself with but I knew I shouldn’t have to sacrifice taste for health.

So I looked into my fridge to see what I could come up with and this was my creation: Continue reading “Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie”

I Dream of Cake

My love affair with cake began at a very early age: portrayed in the picture of me gorging my face on my 5th birthday. I love cake, but cake does not love me. See once upon a time I wasn’t actually as allergic to wheat as I am now. I could tolerate small amounts and be fine. I was, however allergic to eggs and dairy when I was younger, which I thankfully and miraculously  outgrew in my teens. I enjoyed my first piece of cake without having my throat close in on itself when I was 15, and from then on it was strawberry shortcakes, cheesecakes, pancakes, almond bear claws, and whatever else really. Unfortunately, a little more than half a decade later my immune system had another surprise for me. I started reacting to wheat. One bite into a multi-grain bread and I had felt like a thousand wasps had stung me on my tongue.

I continued to eat refined wheat aka bleached white flour in the form of white bread, cakes, and pastries and seemed to be ok. No itchy mouth or scratchy throat so I thought I was good. Wrong. Days later I’d break out in eczema or I’d have other related symptoms of fatigue and achy joints, and I let this go on for years. I would always chalk it up to stress, not getting enough sleep or something else I ate. I refused to believe that I was allergic to wheat again just like I was in denial on my 5th birthday that I wasn’t supposed to be eating that cupcake. I learned the hard way of course. Moments after that picture was snapped, I had an allergic reaction and I went off into the corner and cried, but it was my party and I figured I could cry if I wanted to and have my cake and eat it too. Sadly that’s not how the world works for us allergic folk.

But just like I outgrew my allergy to eggs and dairy, I’m hoping I’ll one day be able to have wheat and flour again. I’m taking a break from eating all of it now and letting my gut repair itself by eating clean, but I have faith I’ll heal soon so I can have my favorite, strawberry shortcake in a few birthdays again.

This post is a part of the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge themed Foreshadow