Thursday, August 20, 2009

A liver story

I know I’ve been talking about cooking more than usual lately, but I have a new challenge, one I shouldn’t be so overwhelmed by, but I sort of am. Just as I’ve gotten back into cooking on a regular basis (well, regular for me), now I have to learn to do it healthy.

Not that my cooking is that unhealthy. We’re not talking Paula Dean good and fattening. We from South Alabama start out well. We cook with chicken, fish, fresh vegetables and lean meat. But then, we like to make it taste good.

Gunter got some good news and some bad news Tuesday. The good news is there was no recurrence of cancer on his CT scans. The bad news is that he has nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Basically, his body doesn't break down fat well and it ends up in his liver. Fatty liver disease can be reversed with a healthy diet, but if left untreated for some time, it can cause cirrhosis and liver failure.

So, he’s supposed to be careful about what he eats, cutting way down on all the things we’ve always been told are bad – fats, margarines, carbs that turn into sugar (like bread and pasta), artificial sweeteners, etc. – and eat more fresh (raw) fruits and vegetables, along with some high-quality protein.

This is sad, but as we were reading about this kind of diet, one of my first questions was, “How do you cook without margarine? Is butter better?”

Obviously, I’m in need of some ideas of things to cook that follow these guidelines as closely as possible and still be something he’ll eat. Between the two of us, I’m the one who likes fruits, vegetables and whole grains. He’s more of a meat, potatoes and bread kind of guy. Hopefully, he can learn to adapt his tastes, kind of like when you’ve weaned yourself off soft drinks and sweet tea for a while and you actually want water.

Really, if we’d just eat food the way God provides it for us – as is – we wouldn’t have so many health problems.

Any advice from all you health-conscious cooks out there?


Calis said...

i think olive oil is supposed to be better than butter/margarine. And you can always do lean ground turkey instead of ground beef. Once you've had it a few times you really dont' even notice the difference.

Whole wheat Pastas are good ideas. For those I suggest cooking just what you will eat that night or day beacuse in my experience they don't keep well. Gets kida gummy but when it's fresh out of the pot it's not bad at all. Again, takes a little getting used to but becomes totally doable. :)

If I think of other things I"ll pass them your way! Also, good luck with the delivery, etc.! And that's awesome that there was no reoccurance of cancer!! Praise the Lord!

Alison Hardy Cali

Debbie K. said...

I don't have any advice, but I am praying for Gunter and you. I know this is the last thing you need on your plate with a new baby coming, but God is still in the healing business and he answers prayers.

~Debbie K.