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Protein Intake

November 16, 2009

The big Protein Announcement: I’m leaving CD for Jay Robb. He he. JOKING!

I really don’t have a big announcement other than to say that I’m trying to eat more protein and fewer grains. It’s NOT to lose weight. I’m 5′ 7″, and I weigh around 135 pounds. I’m perfectly happy and healthy at this weight. However, ever since I lost weight 10 years ago, I’ve had some hormone imbalances. I’m a mystery, and although I’ve seen several doctors, including a mid-wife, no one can quite figure out what is going on inside my body. I’m currently working with my boss, an alternative MD, to get everything back in balance. So, trust me, I have my reasons, and I’m going to leave it at that. I’m not saying grains are the enemy. Nor, am I eating no carb – just trying not to eat oat bran at every meal, which I have been known to do. πŸ˜‰

So, what am I eating?


Breakfast this morning was inspired by two of my favorite readers, Carolyn (love her!!!!) and Dawn (my egg-white guru). I had a scrambled egg white quesadilla with a head-size blob of Trader Joe’s Creamy and Smooth hummus (bye-bye Sabra!).

Am I eating carbs?


Um, yes, That would be a waning jar of Trader Joe’s raw crunchy almond butter filled with a kabocha squash & Jay Robb rice protein powder puree.

Again, oats are NOT the enemy. Been there, done that, and it was misery. I’m simply eating less of them. For instance, instead of my post-dinner oat bran bowls, I’ve been LOVING on some protein ice-cream.


Yes, I eat most of my meals out of jars, and yes, that was a 26 ounce jar of almond butter. Again, lots of protein ice-cream!

Some people have requested a full day-of-eats. Are you interested? I normally don’t post everything I eat because…well, because I eat weird things that aren’t always pretty. However, if you would like to see what goes in my belly, I won’t hold back.

And Katie, no worries, I’m still hugging my carbs…just trying not to squeeze too tight. πŸ™‚

Every Sunday night Chris requests my presence in the Reagan Room (yes, our living room is named after Ron) so that we can watch Sunday Night Football together, which leads us to…

CD’s Random Quote of the Day (I know you’ve missed them)…

CD in regards to Faith Hill’s NFL Sunday Night Football intro: This is my favorite Faith Hill song.

Heather: CD, name one other Faith Hill song.

CD:…complete silence

Heather: Yeah, that’s what I thought. πŸ™‚

147 Comments leave one →
  1. November 16, 2009 9:03 am

    Great job on gettin’ more protein in!

  2. *Andrea* permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:03 am

    i would LOVE a full day of eats! i need to start eating out of jars, this is too cute. i loooove almond butter i think i go through a jar a week :0

  3. November 16, 2009 9:03 am

    I hope you get the hormone issues figured out! I’m sure the havoc it brings on your body is no fun. TJs hummus is yummy??? I want to pick some up when we’re in Nashville! I need ot email you about our meet up- Mandy wants in on it too!

  4. November 16, 2009 9:05 am

    I’d love to see a full day. Your eats aren’t weird to me, just super fun and creative!

    I ate dessert inspired by you last night: baked sweet potato with raw almond butter and cinnamon. Why haven’t I ever done that before for “dessert”? So good!

  5. November 16, 2009 9:05 am

    Your protein eats look just as good as your carby eats! I hope this works well for you

  6. November 16, 2009 9:05 am

    You know he only likes that Faith Hill song because it actually leads right into football πŸ˜‰

    I would love to see a full day of eats, as long as you’re comfortable posting it!

  7. November 16, 2009 9:08 am

    I like mixing cottage cheese into my oats for extra protein. Good luck gettin’ your protein on!

  8. November 16, 2009 9:10 am

    that tjs hummus is where its at!!! i’m in LOVE with the smooth and creamy SPICY! oh my,. its amazing!

  9. peaceandpeanutbutter permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:10 am

    Have you hugged a ‘protein’ today? πŸ™‚

    I’ve been loving Kombocha + laughing cow cheese on Ezekiel Quesadillas! I know you don’t do cheese, but you would love this combo with a substitute!

  10. November 16, 2009 9:12 am

    I would love to see a full day!

    Did CD say that in reference to Faith Hill’s NFL Sunday night football song? If so, I totally agree with him. πŸ™‚

  11. November 16, 2009 9:12 am

    Prettyladycmu, And all this time, I thought it was her boots. πŸ˜‰

  12. November 16, 2009 9:12 am

    BAHAHAHAHA love your conversation with CD – he needs to brush up on his Faith Hill listening, it seems πŸ˜‰

  13. November 16, 2009 9:13 am

    I’d love to see it too! I RARELY eat pretty things ;P But man they taste delish!

  14. November 16, 2009 9:14 am

    Heather, Sad you’re not blogging anymore, but I completely understand your reasons. Hope all is well, and I don’t know, why haven’t you ever had a sweet potato with almond butter and cinnamon for dessert?!? πŸ™‚

  15. November 16, 2009 9:15 am

    Kim, Yes, he loves the entire Faith Hill intro. So cute.

  16. Melanie permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:16 am

    I’d really like to see a full day of eats. Quite honestly, I like your weird eats, and I’ve been trying to incorporate them more into my own. Your eating style has made the most sense to me out of all of the food/fitness blogs I’ve been following for the past six months. I’m sure you’ll get all of the hormone issues worked out, and I’m sure the protein will help:)

  17. November 16, 2009 9:16 am

    Hope the protein addition goes well and helps get your body back in balance. Believe me, I know all about hormone imbalances and it is no fun! You always have yummy eats. I would love to see what you eat in a day:)

    Love you and love your approach to healthy balance with food! Hope you have a fabulous week!

  18. Melissa permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:23 am

    Heather…I have also had some trouble with grains in the past…so I started reading Nourishing Traditions and began soaking everything and eating more fermented foods ( like your yummy oatgurt and my favorite..kimchi ) …have you tried soaking your grains?

  19. November 16, 2009 9:23 am

    Hi Heather!
    So glad you’re on the detective trail to try to figure out what *your* body needs. That’s the key isn’t it. Carving and forging our own path. Here’s to much success! πŸ™‚

  20. maren permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:23 am

    I’d be interested in a full day of eats, as I am also trying to up my protein! πŸ™‚

  21. November 16, 2009 9:25 am

    Ron or Ronald?

    Love the huge chunks of green skin in your kabocha mess!


  22. November 16, 2009 9:29 am

    Melissa, No, not really. How has it helped you? I’m very interested. Mmm..oatgurt. πŸ™‚

  23. November 16, 2009 9:30 am

    Deb, Ronald of course. πŸ™‚

  24. Lauren permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:32 am

    I have missed CD’s random quotes of the day! I’ve been there with the hormone imbalances as well, and docs not sure of what is going on. Tough, tough stuff. You are a smart gal and I hope things are figured out soon! Feel free to shoot me an email if you ever want to chat about it. xoxo

  25. November 16, 2009 9:43 am

    I would love to see a full day. People think I eat weird stuff so I enjoy your weirdness πŸ™‚

    I hope your body gets back on track. I have the same issues so I keep trying to work with the docs.

  26. November 16, 2009 9:48 am

    Hi there! I am really interested in this alternative medicine to hormone inbalance. Do you have any literature or websites that I could take a look at? In general, more protein helps?

    Just the first time I have heard this! Thanks!

  27. foodcents permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:52 am

    Glad you are tuning into your body to figure out what might be off, intuition is important and even more important to listen/trust it.

    I was wondering why you don’t eat whole eggs, just the whites. Just curious, you know me:)

    Love CD’s Random Comments:)

  28. November 16, 2009 9:57 am

    Courtney, I don’t have any one specific website to point you to, but my problem is that I might have PCOS. Docs aren’t quite sure as I show some signs, except for the most common sign of weight gain. For PCOS, a low carb/anti-inflammatory diet is recommended, but again, most people who have PCOS need to lose weight. I don’t, but I figured backing off grains would be worth a try as not much else has helped. Grains can cause inflammation which in turn can wreck havoc in one’s body. I do know that I am insulin resistance, and although I rarely eat sugar, I’ve been known to go to town on some grains. So, I’m just curious to see if eating fewer grains will help. We shall see.

    Here is one interesting opinion on grains you might find interesting…

  29. November 16, 2009 9:58 am

    Foodcents, I often eat whole eggs. Nothing wrong with that. I Just wanted a huge batch of scrambled eggs for my quesadilla this morning and used the boxed egg whites.

  30. Alyson permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:58 am

    I am actually a protein-addict myself πŸ™‚ And that quesadilla looks fantastic! I wouldn’t have thought to combine eggs & hummus.. but yum!

  31. The Pancake Girl permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:59 am

    Do what is best for your body sweets! I hope you unravel the mystery you’re talking about soon.. Figuring out our individual bodies can be SO frustrating sometimes. CD is hilarious, btw- love his comments.


  32. eaternotarunner permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:59 am

    I hope the protein makes you feel better….the ice cream looks great!

  33. Marianne in Auburn permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:02 am

    Must be the water down in Auburn! I have hormone wackiness as well. Ever since stopping BC pills 3 yrs ago and losing a healthy amount of weight (I was about 20lbs too heavy…too much late night drinking and toxic hell bean burritos!!) everything has gone haywire. I have since been dx with autoimmune Hashimoto’s (hypothyroidism) and have been treated for over two years but nothing has come back online….all the other female hormones.

    I travel up to UAB in B’ham to get better medical care (plus I get to pass a Whole Foods on the way!!) and have been tested for everything female issue (PCOS, POF, etc. )under the sun. And I was finally dx (two months ago) with Mitral Valve Prolapse Syndrome which can apparently wreck havoc on your endocrine system so I am hoping once I get this under control everything else will follow. It took about five doctors to pick up on the MVP (all should have heard the click when they listened to my heart) and he didn’t even have to listen to my heart to figure it out!
    feel free to email me, I have researched hormones for the last three years…

    side note-that was a pathetic football game Auburn played this weekend!! I am not looking forward to two weeks when we are descended on by bama fans!

  34. November 16, 2009 10:06 am

    I would love a full day of eats (an idea of portions would be great too). Thanks πŸ™‚

  35. Carolyn permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:07 am

    Love that jar of kabocha!

    Hey your protein pancakes, with the eggs in there, almost taste like french toast… took me a couple minutes to figure out why i liked the cakes so darn much..French toast… love it miss it.. not any more…

    now i need the cinnamon brown sugar SF Torani…

    i’m thinking quesadilla with RRP hummus for lunch…. may have to do swiss cheese though…

    can i eat lunch at 11:07?

  36. Brandi permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:11 am

    got any kabocha you can send my way? my store was OUT this weekend! both of them ,actually.

  37. November 16, 2009 10:15 am

    I say do what works for you and your body πŸ™‚

  38. November 16, 2009 10:18 am

    Brandi, I have a better idea. Why don’t you come visit Nashville, and I’ll make you some. Then we’ll spend the rest of the day shopping at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. πŸ™‚

  39. peaceandpeanutbutter permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:18 am

    Heather, I just read your comment on the possibilty of PCOS.

    I had a feeling you were dealing with something of that sort. I was diagnosed with PCOS a few months ago, and have been dealing with HORRIBLE hormone-imbalances. I tried everything to solve the problem, which included physical symptoms as well as awful depression and increased anxiety 2 weeks before my period. I tried the pill, which I immediately got off of. My doctor has a very integrative approach and has been working with me to find a natural solution. This week I starting taking Cenitol powder (from Metagenics) which is known to regulate hormones and the nervous system. It contained Myo-inositol, which has been studied extensively in treating PCOS. I take the powder 2x a day (in water/juice) and also a natural Folate supplement with it. I’m now just waiting to see if it works. I will definitely let you know.

    Not sure what your exact symptoms are, but I can absolutely relate.


  40. Carrie permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:22 am

    Heather, I do like the pictures. How did you make the quesidilla?
    I think everyone is different, so you do what you feel best. But , if you want some input (from someone with hormonal issues herself), I kind of doubt the low-carb, high-protein approach is the answer. If you were eating carbs like empty white bread, sugar donuts, sugar cookies, that might be a problem. But grains like oats, quinoa, wild and brown rice, buckwheat, and those kinds are actually a very healthy addition to your body. Beans and legumes are also highly beneficial. Also a variety of options for breads and bread-based products. Make these the foundation of the grains and then you will have room for other equally fine things as you please (white products, sugar cereals, etc…though I think that is not your thing, mine though πŸ™‚
    That is just my take on it, I feel protein is over-rated. But you know yourself so do what you got to do.

  41. November 16, 2009 10:22 am

    LOL…CD’s comment is cute. I don’t think Matt could name even ONE Faith Hill song, so I’m impressed that CD has a “favorite.” πŸ˜‰

    You have my full support with whatever changes you want to make, Heabie! I am just so happy to read you will still be eating carbs. I think I would get cranky just READING about a low-carb diet!

  42. Kate permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:23 am

    I’m a protein queen and I try not to have too many grains because of my uber-sensitive stomach either. Brown rice is the easiest to handle as long as it’s just plain and not overly salted. I have found that anything made with lots of wheat flour is killer though – heavy breads, dumplings, etc. Have you tried Ezekiel bread or Ezekiel pitas and tortillas? They are made by the Food For Life company and tend to be a little easier to digest too. Just a suggestion.

    I still haven’t tried protein ice cream, so I need to get around to making some! The only “ice cream” I really have these days is my banana-nut soft serve.

    Oh, and Heather, I have a question about dairy for you. After you stopped eating dairy, did your stomach start feeling better quickly or did it take a while? This is kind of embarassing, but I have acid reflux and upset stomach almost all the time and I’m wondering if it’s because of dairy products. I eat lots (LOTS) of yogurt, cottage cheese, milk, etc. and I think it may be the root of my problem.

    I agree with everyone else – doing what feels good for YOUR body is what’s right. I wish I could figure that out for myself.

  43. Melissa permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:26 am


    I found myself in the hospital 2 yrs ago with what I thought was appendicitis..turned out to be a ‘bowel infection’ that kept me in the hospital for a week on high dose antibiotics, they sent me home with no real diagnosis….could be ‘IBS’ , could have just been an infection. However I still had a disturbing ‘dark spot’ on my MRI in my lower bowel…long story short..when I came home I was afraid to eat anything. My diet before the hospital was mainly whole foods but too much sugar and hardly anything fermented ..and no soaked beans or grains. A good friend of mine gave me “Nourishing Traditions” …the meat and bone broths didn’t appeal to me at all but all the info on fermented foods and soaking grains was intriguing. So I started it and found that I felt better all around. Nothing like a bowel issue to wake you up to what goes in and what comes out. I started having regular and healthy looking stools…my digestive system started running smoothly. I also started drinking kombucha regularly…wow that stuff is liquid gold! Any sort of stomach rumbling and a swig of that settles it right away! I’m thinking of venturing into the world of making my own..should be fun. I had my second followup MRI and no dark spot to be found! It could have just been an infection..but i do think soaking oats and grains makes them easy to digest. Heres an excerpt from the book:

    “So the well-meaning advice of many nutritionists, to consume whole grains as our ancestors did and not refined flours and polished rice, can be misleading and harmful in its consequences; for while our ancestors ate whole grains, they did not consume them as presented in our modern cookbooks in the form of quick-rise breads, granolas, bran preparations and other hastily prepared casseroles and concoctions. Our ancestors, and virtually all pre-industrialized peoples, soaked or fermented their grains before making them into porridge, breads, cakes and casseroles. A quick review of grain recipes from around the world will prove our point: In India, rice and lentils are fermented for at least two days before they are prepared as idli and dosas; in Africa the natives soak coarsely ground corn overnight before adding it to soups and stews and they ferment corn or millet for several days to produce a sour porridge called ogi; a similar dish made from oats was traditional among the Welsh; in some Oriental and Latin American countries rice receives a long fermentation before it is prepared; Ethiopians make their distinctive injera bread by fermenting a grain called teff for several days; Mexican corn cakes, called pozol, are fermented for several days and for as long as two weeks in banana leaves; before the introduction of commercial brewers yeast, Europeans made slow-rise breads from fermented starters; in America the pioneers were famous for their sourdough breads, pancakes and biscuits; and throughout Europe grains were soaked overnight, and for as long as several days, in water or soured milk before they were cooked and served as porridge or gruel. (Many of our senior citizens may remember that in earlier times the instructions on the oatmeal box called for an overnight soaking.)

    Anyway…just thought you might try soaking your oats..or grains..cant hurt, right? πŸ™‚


  44. November 16, 2009 10:28 am

    Carrie, Thanks for you input. The quesadilla was super easy. I simply scrambled 1 cup of boxed egg whites and slapped them between 2 whole grain tortillas toasted in my toaster oven.

  45. Carrie permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:28 am

    Heather, another comment. I hate to be mean toward another person who posts their opinions. But the website you gave on marksdailyapple. It is his opinion and I am sure he is a nice person and intelligent. But those ideas are his opinion, there are no proven peer-reviewed studies in existence for these ideas. So in the meantime they are just ideas. His ideas. Sorry, I am in the healthcare field and too often see people flock to peoples opinions with extreme devotion.

  46. November 16, 2009 10:30 am

    Kate, I felt the effects of no dairy almost immediately. Why I keep eating it sometimes, I have no idea. I feel 100 x’s better without it. Check out Alisa Fleming’s Go Dairy Free: Her own story with dairy is amazing.

    You’ll get things figured out – it just may take some time, and yes, I love the Ezekiel products. So yummy!

  47. Sandy permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:33 am

    How about the Colts last night! Great Sunday night football night.

  48. November 16, 2009 10:33 am

    Wow, cool info Melissa. Thank you for taking the time to share. Makes me want to get in my car and drive to Whole Foods for some oat groats and Kombucha. πŸ™‚ Glad you’re feeling better. Way to listen to your body and take control. Love, Heather

  49. November 16, 2009 10:35 am

    Carrie, I don’t agree with everything Mark Sisson says (he is anti-oatmeal!!!). However, I do like his philosophy on exercise and SOME of his dietary advice. No apologies – you’re not being mean. Just posting your own ideas, and I appreciate hearing all opinions on the subject.

  50. November 16, 2009 10:36 am

    I just wanted to read that you *will still be eating carbs*….I would miss reading the posts otherwise. Though, of course I like to read because of your personality the most πŸ™‚ Nice pictures, your nice approach to life πŸ™‚
    I cannot jump on this *high on protein or up the protein* bandwagon, but I love me my carbs, and you eat better carbs than I, so just keep throwing in those pics when you can for some eye-candy πŸ™‚

  51. November 16, 2009 10:42 am

    I think its a good idea to mix things up once in awhile. So switching to more protein is a good way to shake your body up. Id love to see what you eat in a day too! I find it interesting to see how others eat=) Anyways hope you have a super day!

  52. balancejoyanddelicias permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:48 am

    Heather… I’m so sorry to know that you were having some hormonal imbalance…. and I know how is the feeling of not knowing exactly what’s going on in your body and even doctors can’t tell… I’ve been there for almost two years and still struggling sometimes. Hope your new dietary change helps. keep us updated! πŸ˜€

  53. November 16, 2009 11:07 am

    I’m chiming in too to say that I’d love a full day of eats.

  54. November 16, 2009 11:13 am

    I definitely want to see a full day of eats if it includes more hilarious pictures of squash jammed into almond butter jars! πŸ˜› Seriously HEAB, that’s too funny.

    Bodies are fickle things, and there’s no set rules of what will work for everyone. Which means, the only way to get it figured out is to experiment! Hopefully it works for you this time. Lord knows I’ve done my fair share of experimenting too, it’s always a work in progress…

  55. November 16, 2009 11:16 am

    Who cares what your weight is, you always look beautiful and radiantly healthy! πŸ™‚

    Similar issues here, I would love to hear what you find.

    And speaking of low-grain, I am on a similar venture. I am giving away a copy of the new Almond Flour Cookbook on my blog which I just got and am already enjoying. You might want to check it out πŸ™‚

  56. November 16, 2009 11:24 am

    I know exactly what you mean! IΒ΄m always struggling to meet my daily protein goal. My doctor told me, it is very important for me, to cut down on carbs, because IΒ΄m suffering from water retention in my legs for two years now… but still IΒ΄m eating a whole kaboocha or butternut for dinner,
    thatΒ΄s a must : )

  57. Erin permalink
    November 16, 2009 11:26 am

    For the millionth time, I am trying to cut down on the grains in my life (yes, even the whole grain kind, which are pretty much the only kind I eat.) I always succumb to my terrible carb/sugar cravings, however, and can never fully get over them. But I really, really want to cut down on them. After years of stomach problems that I can’t seem to resolve, I decided to go to a new gastroenterologist. He told that grains are pro-inflammatory and wreak havoc on your system. He said I should just eat protein, nuts, seeds, veggies and fruits. Seems to make sense, and I’d like to follow his regimen, but I just love love LOVE my oatmeal and cereal. I can never decide how I feel about carbs. :-/ Anyway, I’m really interested in following your higher protein/lower carb (but not NO carb!) journey…

  58. kathleen permalink
    November 16, 2009 11:32 am

    hi heather,
    i read every post, but i have never commented before until i saw the words carbs/hormone imbalance. i can totally relate as i have been trying to figure out my hormonal deal for years…i’ve had many doctors go the PCOS route and others just throw their hands up in confusion. it can be frustrating, but i know that upping my protein or always eating a protein with a carb has really helped me. good luck!

  59. November 16, 2009 11:35 am

    Phew, I’m glad to know that the carbs aren’t going to be shunned by Heather. That would be a sad fate indeed. What would the stores do with all that extra oat bran??? It would pile up and take over the world!

    In other news: YES, I wanna see a full day of Heather eats! πŸ™‚

  60. November 16, 2009 11:38 am

    Thanks for understanding and for the support Kathleen. I’ve had a few doctors throw their hands up in confusion as well.

  61. November 16, 2009 11:54 am

    That is truly a big squashy mess in a jar! That’s too funny about Faith Hill! Most of the time, my husband hums along or makes up words to song because he doesn’t remember them. Typical man. I guess that what wives and girlfriends are for.

  62. Julia permalink
    November 16, 2009 12:07 pm

    Your food pics are an inspiration, Heather – from your love of the jars (I prefer one udon-style soup bowl, myself), to the wide array of squashy things, whipped brown things, and the POM ice cubes – it all has helped me eat more thoughtfully, and creatively. Plus, you’re hilarious in your descriptions, so please feel free to add tons more of oddly colored & textured things sticking out of a jar!

    I probably have PCOS, and have been struggling to lay off dairy, carbs and sugar for a few years. Thanks for posting on this. For me, brief stints of going 100% raw recently were really eye opening — I felt ridiculously good so fast. It’s not something I want to do full time right now, but it’s definitely inspired me to learn more, and keep working at understanding what it takes to feel good. Your blog has been a great resource for me – so thanks for that blogroll!

  63. November 16, 2009 12:09 pm

    I have to say that the jar of squash looks a bit like a Play-Doh experiment gone horribly wrong, but oddly enough, it looked absolutely delicious to me πŸ™‚ And to be honest, I’m kind of over bloggers having to feel like they need to justify every single thing they put in their mouth or decision they make.

    If you know what works for you–high protein, moderate carbs–then go to town. It might not work for me and it might not work for someone else, but it’s your blog, your body and your choice. You look fabulous and from what I can tell, you feel fabulous, so more power to you πŸ™‚ No excuses or justifications; just more HEABs recipes and classic CD quotes (I’m with him on the Faith Hill thing, btw).

  64. November 16, 2009 12:11 pm

    It takes cahones to put your height and weight on the internet. You rock. You are such a good example for all of us.

    I saw something the other day that said that every time the Faith Hill intro gets played she gets a big fat check. Personally, I like her husband a LOT more than her.

  65. Scott in Ohio permalink
    November 16, 2009 12:29 pm

    Christina and I certainly wish the best for you and hope your “mystery” will soon be solved!

    Shout out to Melissa for mentioning Nourishing Traditions. The book and the Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF) are fabulous.

  66. November 16, 2009 12:29 pm

    Eggy Weggs and hummus. Now THAT’S why I read HEABS. You should open your own cafe.

  67. November 16, 2009 12:41 pm

    I have PCOS and I am trying to up my protein intake too. Doc says it might help balance out my hormones. We’ll see. Can’t wait to read more.

  68. November 16, 2009 12:49 pm

    Also HEABs- have you tried Chaste tree (Vitex) for your hormones? It’s great for kickstarting the rag when it won’t come. Raspberry leaf is another one that’s good for toning the ute. Chaste tree is found in pills & tinctures and Raspberry Leaf is a yummy tea. Both are at Whole Foods.

  69. November 16, 2009 1:06 pm

    I’m super interested to see how lowering the grains in your diet will help. I’ve been reading Mark’s Daily Apple for a while, and done some research on my own, and it does seem like a diet super rich in grains is just not that good for us. I wouldn’t mind seeing daily eats of yours, as long as it isn’t too much trouble. Your food is so creative, and I bet I could get some great ideas for new foods! I mean, I am now addicted to Kabocha squash because of you. πŸ™‚ Good luck on your protein power transition!

  70. November 16, 2009 1:09 pm

    Farty, I have not tried Chaste Tree or Raspberry leaf – thank you so much for the tips. I’m going to look into those, and that’s why I love Fartygirl! πŸ™‚

  71. November 16, 2009 1:19 pm

    I am totally interested. You look great and I am trying to lose some weight and I want to figure out where I am going wrong bc I feel like I eat well and not too much!

  72. fruitsveggieslife permalink
    November 16, 2009 1:30 pm

    Hormone imbalances are no fun – I hope you are able to figure it out! And seeing a full day of HEAB’s eats would be great. Even if things ‘look weird’, I’m sure they taste great!

  73. November 16, 2009 1:36 pm

    I’m a protein junkie!! I wouldn’t know what to do without it. I LOVE making protein cakes and muffins mmm….it’s so versatile. If you need any suggestions feel free to ask me!

  74. November 16, 2009 1:39 pm

    Thanks April! I might be calling on your protein expertise. πŸ™‚

  75. November 16, 2009 1:58 pm

    That Jar looked scary!!! hah! But yummy I’m sure:) It would be fun to see the interesting things you eat in a day! I think that’s why I don’t blog every bite anymore, I eat pretty random messes, if ya know what I mean?!

  76. Jessica permalink
    November 16, 2009 1:59 pm

    Have you thought about taking Maca powder, it works through the hormones to regulate imbalances. Navitas Naturals has it on their website

  77. November 16, 2009 2:01 pm

    Jessica, Yes, I’ve had several people tell me I need to take it, and my sweet friend, Smoothie Girl Deb (, is sending me a jar. Can’t wait to incorporate it into my diet.

  78. November 16, 2009 2:04 pm

    I’d love to see a full day of protein-rich eats!!

  79. November 16, 2009 2:42 pm

    I have crazy hormones too so I’m interested to see how this goes for you. Good luck!

    I also read somewhere that for some women, eating too much fiber could have an impact on ovulation. I wish I remember where I saw it. Have you heard that before?

  80. November 16, 2009 2:59 pm

    Hey Heather, I too am trying to up my protein and lower my carb intake. My thyroid levels are too low which I now know is due to my recent diagnosis of poly cystic ovarian syndrome. My appt. with an endocrinologist is in just a little over a week. In the meantime, I’ve been doing some research that points to exactly what you’re saying – not to go NO carb, but to go lower and smarter carbs. And more protein. Women with PCOS tend to be insulin resistant, which I believe I may be since I get oddly shaky and cranky if I haven’t had enough protein and go too long between meals.

    Anyway, looks like you’re doing a great job upping your protein!! I need to follow your example!! I would LOVE to see all of your meals in a day!! I’m looking forward to it!! πŸ™‚

  81. November 16, 2009 3:01 pm

    Would love a full day of eats (I am abnormally curious about what goes in other people’s mouths)! Also, I tried the more protein thing and it just didn’t work so well for me. I’ve always felt better on a more carby, low fat type diet. Especially when I run a lot. Good luck with it though! My mom swears by less grains and more protien!

  82. November 16, 2009 3:12 pm

    You know I know all about being a mystery to doctors I am still trying to figure out what is going on in my body. While I am just trying to keep stress levels down right now. I am always looking for answers, maybe someday I will know but I know what it feels like to try lots of stuff to figure out what works best. πŸ™‚

  83. shelby permalink
    November 16, 2009 3:28 pm

    Bring on the full day of eats!!!

  84. November 16, 2009 3:29 pm

    I too am upping my protein intake so protein powder and egg whites are a must. I have a quick question…how much kabocha do you use to puree with protein powder? I always find that three slices, 1 1/2 cup, fills me up soo quickly its fustrating because I have too many leftovers lol


  85. November 16, 2009 4:14 pm

    Great job on the protein! So creative. I also squeeze the carbs too tight must let up. Of course almost a whole box of Annie’s chocolate chip bunnies helps *rolls eyes*. And yes I missed the CD comments! So hysterical.

  86. November 16, 2009 5:06 pm

    Loving my almond butter. And TJ’s smooth (and SPICY) hummus. Definitely a must-have (in my kitchen at least).

    Have a delightful evening
    xo becca

  87. November 16, 2009 5:08 pm

    Good luck with figuring everything out… I know you pain all too well. My sister and I struggle with hormonal imbalances too… still trying to figure our situations out! :/ It takes time I guess to put everything together and fix it. HAHA. And believe me I don’t think what you eat is weird. I know people look at us and say wow those twins are weird. But we are happy of where we our in our journey of life and know that everything we are doing is only improving our health. Cheers and good luck! I wish you all the best.

  88. Katie permalink
    November 16, 2009 5:42 pm

    Yes, please post a day of eats! I’ve made some great (some may call them strange, yes) foods based off of your blog photos! And, I just wrote down the egg white, hummus qesadilla to make for breakfast tomorrow!

  89. tamie permalink
    November 16, 2009 6:00 pm

    I want to know everything you eat too. because I am starting to get discouraged again. I need to loose weight. yet naturally I do want to eat healthy too. I need to know what I am doing wrong as far as weight loss goes. I eat very natural 3 times a day and 2 snacks. not much exercise yet, I have RA, so my exercise is limited. so what protein are you eating? and if I ate oatmeal for all 3 meals is that ok too? plus veggies fruits etc.? thanks.

  90. tamie permalink
    November 16, 2009 6:02 pm

    oh forgot to add in my previous post that I lost 6 pound in less than a month when I started, but now I am stuck there. after nearly 2 months. uhg!

  91. November 16, 2009 6:25 pm

    Cool! Looks like a delicious plan. I always love seeing a day of your eats… mainly because it makes me think I’m normal πŸ˜€

  92. November 16, 2009 7:23 pm

    Maggie, I usually puree half a squash – so 2 cups? I can eat a lot. πŸ™‚

  93. November 16, 2009 7:33 pm

    Tamie, Everyone’s body is different and what works for me might not work for you. As far as protein goes, I’m eating it all except dairy, and not much soy. I eat eggs, rice protein powder, seafood, chicken and beef. In my opinion, I would not recommend oatmeal 3 x’s a day, especially if you’re trying to lose weight. Stick to veggies, proteins and fats (avocados, coconut, nuts and nut butters). If you’re not exercising much, then you can get all the carbs you need from veggies and some fruits. Try and stay away from all sugar. Since you have RA, I would also avoid gluten since it cause inflammation (oats included). If you do eat grains, stick to gluten free ones like quinoa, millet, teff, etc.

    I think weight loss is 90% about the diet, but are you able to exercise at all? Walking a few times a week and adding some strength training sessions might really help you to get over your plateau. Hope this helps. -Heather

  94. November 16, 2009 7:54 pm

    Low protein and an imbalance (or overconsumption) of carbs is my enemy in SO many ways, including hormonal issues. I’ve had a lot of doctors tell me it’s nothing, and a couple more actually believe me. So, what I’m saying is, I get this. And I’m glad you’re working to figure it out. It can be SO worth it, especially on those days when you don’t realize why you feel a certain way and then, days later, it hits you that you had no protein– I’ve had days like that, anyway. Good for you for trying new things. We owe it to ourselves to feel our best, even if that changes over time. Which it will.

    Also, I love that your jar of food matches the outdoor foliage.


  95. November 16, 2009 8:07 pm

    Thanks for the encouragement Leslie!

  96. tamie permalink
    November 16, 2009 8:18 pm

    thanks Heather. yes I can walk, but of late been so busy with my mom having surgery etc. I start physical therapy for my legs for 1 month, plus I go to the pool, so hopefully doing both things will help me. I eat nuts, I eat nutbutters, I eat veggies, and fruits, I only eat chicken, but thats just me I been only liking chicken meat now for a long time–meaning thats the only meat I care to eat. all sodas, all carbs (the bad kind) all sugar all processed foods are out of my diet now. yet I do eat yogurt and cottage cheese. should I add a protein powder to my diet?? I am lost, shocked and confused at this time lol! but thanks for your reply.

  97. November 16, 2009 8:28 pm

    hmm are you telling me my breakfast and dinner of cereal might not be the best choice? I had that feeling πŸ™‚ I’d love to see a day of eats, I know I’m weird and all over the place so it will make me feel good to know not everyone whips up gourmet food all day long

  98. November 16, 2009 8:38 pm

    I hope you find your answers. I am still stuck. I am educating myself on the opposite approach though. Heavy proteins, meats and those things, are heavy on the stomach and the body. Grains, beans, fats, vegetables, and fruits are gentle, and restore rhythm. That is my line of learning anyway, but everyone is different. (Think about the big meat-eating lion who tears up other animals and sleeps all day. And then think of the gentle and lovely giraffe or gazelle that eats plants, or the stronger muscular horse that eats only plants and oats again). Even beans are very healthy, soak them or roast them to help digestion.
    If you decide to do a day of eats Heather, maybe you could first say what a sample pre-new-approach-day is like . And then tell us something for the new day. Plus, maybe you could do 2-3 because days might vary right?
    I bought some squash (not kombucha though). Do you know the accurate nutrition information among the buttercup and butternut and the sweet potato?

  99. November 16, 2009 8:54 pm

    Hey! I’m fairly new to your blog but I’m loving it so far! I really appreciate that your decision to increase protein and reduce grains came from wanting to understand your body better as opposed to wanting to control it. Your protein ice cream looks fantastic, and as a person who eats protein muffins, pancakes, and anything else you can make with whey protein, I was wondering if the xanthan and guar gum are absolutely necessary in order to make it. I hear they work really well in smoothies and some baking recipes, but I was hoping there were some more commonly found substitutions that i could use. Anyway, thanks for the great post and I can’t wait to keep reading!

  100. November 16, 2009 8:54 pm

    now I know why you called “heather eats almond butter” ! I thought I am a big almond eater ( i have about 11 bottles) , you beat me!!! πŸ˜€

  101. November 16, 2009 9:28 pm

    Hey Tami, I’m a big fan or protein powders myself, but I’m sure you’re getting enough protein in your diet already with nuts, chicken, yogurt and cottage cheese. Don’t give up – you’ll figure out what works best for you. Just takes some trial and error.

  102. Chelsea Ward permalink
    November 16, 2009 9:30 pm

    Hope the protein works out for you! Green Monster smoothies are a great way to incorporate a whopping 15-20 grams of protein to your day. I like to use Vegan Brown Rice protein and almond butter in mine…along with a heaving bout of spinach, 1 frozen banana, some agave nectar, and soy milk.

  103. November 16, 2009 9:32 pm

    Magdabresson, You can make the protein ice-cream without the gums, but you’ll just end up with a really icy whey protein smoothie. I literally use 1 cup nut milk and 1 scoop of whey protein and ice. With the gums, it fluffs up enough to fill a 26 ounce jar. Smoothie Deb recently wrote an informative post on guar and xanthan gums that you might find interesting: . Hope this helps, and thanks so much for reading my blog! Sincerely, Heather

  104. November 16, 2009 9:34 pm

    Magdabresson, P.S. You could try chia seeds. They’ll thicken up a smoothie if you soak them in your nut milk overnight in the fridge. I usually use 3 TBSP chia seeds to 1 cup liquid.

  105. November 16, 2009 9:37 pm

    Valerie, Thanks for input on my day of eats post. Good idea, and I hope the research you’re doing helps you!

    As far as squash and sweet potato nutrients go, I use the following website for nutritional information: Their database is the most complete out of any site I’ve used in the past.

  106. PeonyJen permalink
    November 16, 2009 10:14 pm

    Your boss is an alternative MD? That rocks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I can’t find anyone like that in our insurance plan other than a family practice MD with an intergrative medicine fellowship

  107. November 16, 2009 10:20 pm

    PeonyJen, Yes, most doctors, my boss included, opt out of the insurance plans b/c the insurance companies dictate too much of what they can and can’t do. A lot of our patients file on their own and some receive reimbursement. The ACAM website is a great resource for locating an alternative MD in your area:

  108. November 16, 2009 10:44 pm

    Just stopping back in to read the comments more thoroughly… Lots of great info. Loved this post. Hugs πŸ™‚

  109. Hanna M. permalink
    November 17, 2009 5:00 am

    Since other commenters are suggesting things that might help: Are you sure you get enough omega-3 fatty acids? Fish/seafood, walnuts, a daily spoon of flax oil… These fatty acids are important too for the balance of hormones (and lots of other stufff!) in our bodies.
    Hope you find out how to get rid of the problem!

  110. November 17, 2009 7:35 am

    Hanna M, You know your stuff. My doctor has me on black currant oil (2 three x’s a day) and fish oil (1 twice a day). I also try and eat salmon often, and I love my chia seeds and walnuts. Hope it all helps! Thanks for the advice. πŸ™‚

  111. hayleycepeda permalink
    November 17, 2009 7:45 am

    I promise I haven’t ditched your blog! I just haven’t always commented on everything, but I’m glad things are still going well. I think it’s great that you’re trying to figure out what works best for your body – only you (and maybe the help of a professional) can figure that out. Your jars of “stuff” (almond butter, tahini, kabocha, hummus, etc) always look so yummy… πŸ™‚

  112. November 17, 2009 7:53 am

    I totally understand where you are coming from! I’m not a protein lover by nature either and often have to make a special effort to get enough in. I like all your solutions! Will have to try out the protein ice cream (mmm… ice cream…)

  113. November 17, 2009 7:53 am

    Sweet Hayley, I know you’re still out there. No worries about not commenting. Life is not about blog reading…it’s about quality time with our hubbies, hanging out with friends, and teaching jazzercise. πŸ˜‰

  114. rebekka permalink
    November 17, 2009 8:02 am

    Heather I love your blog. I am starting my own , can you give me some advice? I was trying to find a theme with a calendar but cannot find one. And if the theme you choose gives you side bars that you do not want , how do you delete them ? I looked everywhere, in settings and everything. I guess they have to stay ? I cannot decide the best theme to go with so it has a calendar, archives and blogroll on the side. If I try to add a calendar, it deletes the blogroll, and there are no options then to add a blogroll. Help!?

  115. Melissa permalink
    November 17, 2009 8:03 am

    I’d love to know what the Black Currant Oil has done for you..I started Cod Liver Oil a few months ago and I think I can feel some positive things happening πŸ™‚

  116. November 17, 2009 8:10 am

    I am 5’8! Gosh, I am tall haha. And I love that big jar of kabocha..I am thinking I may need to make one up to take with me on a 4 hr drive I hafta make this weekend!! Hope your week is going fab Heather!

  117. November 17, 2009 8:11 am

    Good luck with everything! I actually think I have a hormone inbalance, or something like that as well. My doctor kind of told me to wait it out, and my mom and I don’t know what else we should do. The body is a mystery!

    I’m loving the squash inside the almond butter jar. Looks amazing!

  118. rebekka permalink
    November 17, 2009 8:15 am

    what is PCOS ? Any words that I make it simple to understand?

  119. November 17, 2009 8:19 am

    Rebekka, Honestly, I am pretty clueless when it comes to WordPress. Zesty Cook did all my design work: As far as the sidebar goes, to add a blogroll, go to your dashboard, links, add new. To remove items from your sidebar, go to dashboard, appearance, widgets. To remove widgets (calendar, archives, etc) from the sidebar, simply click on them to open and then click on remove. Hope this helps. Email me with any other questions and best of luck with your blog!

  120. November 17, 2009 8:20 am

    Melissa, Not much yet. Been taking it for about 6 weeks. I do notice I have more energy, but I’m thinking that’s from the B-complex I’m taking. Not sure. I’ll keep everyone posted.

  121. November 17, 2009 8:23 am

    Rebekka, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

  122. November 17, 2009 8:51 am

    Heather! Thanks for your sweet comments on my blog…wish you were with us with your pups too!!:( I totally wish I had a vitamix to make protein ice cream…always looks so yummy! Hugs

  123. Vicki permalink
    November 17, 2009 9:05 am

    Heather – You are so funny! I love the banter between you and your hubby! Thanks again for your fun, fun blog!!!

  124. jacobc permalink
    November 17, 2009 9:24 am

    Yum, protein!

    Not that your fixes don’t look awesome- Those deer and turkey running around the back yard look mighty yummy..

  125. Danielle permalink
    November 17, 2009 9:31 am

    I’ve had weird hormone imbalances for the past 2 years. I’ve gone to 3 different doctors and had (expensive!) blood work done and they all just say “it’s a mystery” and sort of leave it at that. So, I know where you’re coming from

    I would love to see a full day of eats πŸ™‚

  126. JessicaR permalink
    November 17, 2009 10:01 am

    Whatever you can share about your potential PCOS and treatment methods would be immensely helpful to me. I am pretty sure I have it too, but it has been masked mostly from medication I have been on since age 14 (I’m almost 26 now). Far too long to be on medication! I am trying to taper down and treat it mostly through alternative methods. I need to find a good alternative doc to work with to help me through this thing…

  127. JessicaR permalink
    November 17, 2009 10:03 am

    Also, have you seen this site?

    She cured her PCOS naturally and has a great blog (although not updated much recently).

  128. November 17, 2009 10:08 am

    JessicaR, Not quite sure if I have PCOS, but from what I’ve read, there are natural treatments you can try. As you probably know, a lot of women with PCOS are overweight, and to lose weight, doctors recommend more of a low carb diet. Often times, when they lose weight, the body gets back in balance. Well, that’s not my problem as everything began when I lost my weight. Doctors think I shocked my system or something and keep trying to put me on birth control pills, but that does not solve the problem.

    Just know you’re not alone my friend, and I’ll make sure to keep everyone posted if I find something that truly helps me.

  129. November 17, 2009 10:08 am

    JessicaR – thanks for the link. Will check it out right now.

  130. wmuamy permalink
    November 17, 2009 10:57 am

    I just discovered the TJ’s smooth creamy hummus last week myself! I needed on the go eats and I grabbed a bag of organic broccoli and akmak crackers, a trader joes 73% organic dark chocolate and it was great.

    I would love a full day of eats – I also get great ideas from you!!

  131. November 17, 2009 1:23 pm

    I can’t wait to hear the results of your experiment and really hope it helps you to feel better!

  132. November 17, 2009 2:28 pm

    Hi Heather,
    I’ve had some problems with hormonal imbalance, too, and then that lead to mal-absorbtion of nutrients–so I was eating normally, but not really getting any nutrients from what I ate. Not fun. I hope you’re all balanced soon!
    If you find something that definitely helps, I’d love to know about it. I’ve seen a naturopath about my issues, but not a conventional doctor yet.
    Best wishes!

  133. Kathleen permalink
    November 17, 2009 2:43 pm

    Hi Heather. What a great blog. Keep up the good work. And good luck with the hormone issues. Seems we women can get VERY mucked up at times. I am working with an alternative doctor I found in the resources section of one of Suzanne Sommer’s books (LOVED Ageless, The Sexy Years, Breakthrough and Knockout, BTW). At 54, most of my hormones had tanked. My doctor took VERY thorough blood hormone levels. Am now taking bioidentical estrogen, testosterone and progesterone, plus natural thyroid, adrenal glandulars, pregnenolone, and DHEA. Taking a hefty Vitamin D supplement, too; my levels were in the basement. Since last spring when I began treatment, I’ve seen improvements: Greater energy, restored libido, better mental focus and concentration–I won’t go on.

    It can take a while, and a little experimenting, before you see improvements. Hang in!

  134. November 17, 2009 5:55 pm

    yaaaaay for protein. ha. i am a protein whore.

  135. November 17, 2009 7:32 pm

    Thanks Kathleen. Your comment was very encouraging. πŸ™‚

  136. Megan permalink
    November 18, 2009 8:46 am

    I’m sorry that I missed this yesterday!

    I have dealt with some hormone issues due to weight loss and it’s no fun. I so hope your plan helps and your doctors can find a solution that works ASAP! Sending you positive vibes. . .

  137. November 18, 2009 9:48 am

    Thanks Megan!

  138. hotflashbang permalink
    November 21, 2009 8:32 pm

    Wow.. this is so interesting… and timely… I’ve been reading Primal Blueprint (Mark Sissan) and Nourishing Traditions (Sally Fallon)… along with Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen and Real Food (Nina Planck)… and doing research on what the science is behind the whole grains and inflammation thang (I’m also a RN and like to look at evidence… however, I also know there are a lot of politics behind what is and is not researched/published)… in the meantime, i’ve been soaking my oat groats and find they taste even creeeeeeaaamier… cool, eh?

    The whole thing is just so dad gum confusing.. I’m trying to learn what I can.. eat less processed foods and more whole (close to the earth) foods.. I figure just doing those “simple” things is a step in the right direction… my restless leg syndrome has completely disappeared (no more meds for me!)… but I’m still dealing with middle of the night cravings and insomnia.. it’s either menopause (ugh) or eating high carbs late in the day… still trying to tune in to what my body is saying… I do know that protein and fiber make me feel more satisfied…

    I’ll be interested to see if you feel better… and I’ll be sending some healing prayers your way as well…

  139. November 21, 2009 9:17 pm

    Thanks Annie, Very cool that your restless syndrome is gone. I love hearing from others that are doing all they can to help themselves with natural methods of healing rather than simply slamming down medication after medication. The human body can truly do amazing things when given the proper nutrition, no?

    Did you see this post? My favorite recipe for soaked oat groats: It’s yummy. πŸ™‚

    I’ll be sure to keep everyone posted – thanks for your prayers. Love, Heather

  140. Jennifer R. permalink
    November 21, 2009 11:19 pm

    Heather, have you by chance read Meghan Telpner’s tutorial on the Lunar Cycles? It’s about what supplements to help our bodies with our menstrual cycle. By the way, my doctor had even told me about this before I read Meghan’s tutorial (it’s about taking flax oil the first 2 weeks of your cycle, and then evening primrose oil for the second half). Pretty interesting stuff.

    Oh, and you can get certified gluten free oats — regular oatmeal has a high probability of cross contamination (I’m gluten free… due to my anemia). And yes, do take the Maca powder — add it to smoothies or ice cream. And cod liver oil is good too πŸ™‚ All of which I’m sure you know from your doctor.

    Good luck getting to the bottom of the issues. I feel like I’m always learning something new and need to be a detective πŸ™‚

  141. November 22, 2009 7:51 am

    Jennifer R., Thanks so much for the advice. I’ve seen Meghan’s tutorial on her site and been very curious about it. I have heard of taking flax oil and evening primrose oil, but I don’t know many details about it. This is interesting, and I’m going to look into it. Thanks again!

  142. kailey permalink
    November 26, 2009 8:33 pm

    hey heather!! I know this is kind of an old post, but I was just reading through the comments and you mentioned that your hormone imbalanced happened after you lost weight. i am going through the same thing! I lost about 25 over two years and haven’t had my period for about two years now. My doctor also thinks I “shocked” my system thus no period…but I’ve been at this weight (its a healthy weight!) for about a year just so lost. They want to put me on birth control but I am against hormones going into my body (im only 17). basically i am very excited to see how this works out for you so I might give it a try !

  143. November 26, 2009 9:14 pm

    Kailey, Yep, same problem I have…only it’s been about 10 years for me. Do not go on birth control because when you’re ready to go off the pill, the problem will still be there. Every doctor has tried putting me on the pill, and it’s just a band-aid that doesn’t really address or fix what is going on in my body. I’m currently taking some natural supplements along with bioidentical hormone drops as well as changing up my diet. I’ll make sure to keep everyone posted, and please know you’re not alone. Hope you had a good Thanksgiving and congrats on losing the weight AND keeping it off. πŸ™‚ Love, Heather


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