Wednesday, May 19, 2010

First Attempt!

Hello All!
I'm Liz! And this is my attempt at living Vegan!! I've been a food blog reader for quite some time, so I thought I'd try writing my own little blog. Please grace me with your patience as I learn my way around this blog situation. So let me give you some background, and explain why I'm even starting this project!

Ever since I was little, I've had very high cholesterol, due to genetics. (Thanks, Dad!) The doctors wanted to put me on medication at the ripe age of 11, but my parents didn't want me to start something like that at such a young age. Eventually, my doctor put me on medication, around age 18, but I only took it for a year or two. While the medication did seem to help things, I'd like to attempt some life style changes, and see what difference that can make before I get back on the meds again. So this is the kick off!

Some Vital stats:

I'm 21 years old, I'm 5' 4", 124lbs. My over all cholesterol is 277... anything above 200 is bad news! My LDL (the bad cholesterol) is 225, and that should be less than 150! My HDL (the good guys!) is 39, and it should be over 50. My main goal in the next 6 months, is to get the total cholesterol and LDL to go down, and to raise my HDL!

I've been a vegetarian for the last 3 1/2 years, but admittedly, I didn't necessarily replace meat with healthier options. If you've ever tried vegetarianism, you know how easy it is to fall into the trap of tossing out meat only to replace it with extra carbs + fat. Yuck! I've been a diet coke addict for awhile, and I'm a habitual snack-er. *sigh*

So here are the new nutritional goals!

1. Going vegan!! I've heard a lot of great things about veganism, and I think for lowering cholesterol, going vegan will help me stay on track. I think the hardest thing to give up will be cheese + yogurt. I've been reading lots and lots of vegan blogs recently, to give me some recipe ideas!

2. Exercising regularly. I have months where I work out religiously, and months where I can't seem to get my butt off the couch. Here's to starting a new routine!

3. Cut out artificial sweeteners. I know the hardest part is going to be giving up my beloved diet coke, but I think in the end it will be worth it!

4. Eating less processed/packaged food. I've always been a fan of the "grab and go" type of food. But a box of wheat thins isn't as healthy as fresh vegetables... no matter what the box claims!

Those are some initial goals, so hopefully I can stick with them!

What are some of your hardest food challenges? Is there a particular food or food category (i.e. salty snacks, ice cream, chocolate) that you just can't stop eating?

Any comments, ideas, and advice are greatly appreciated!


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