Food Tips, Ramblings

Sourcing Healthy Foods

These last few months have been stressful for everyone.  In so many parts of the world, it has been difficult to obtain healthy foods as grocery store shelves have been stripped bare as a result of panic buying.  With the country under lockdown in most places, our shopping trips are limited which makes it harder to keep a stock of fresh fruits and vegetables on hand.

What we eat plays a huge part in the strength of our immune systems.  In Europe, Scandinavia and the UK small dedicated food shops are still the norm.  They are starting to make a comeback in the US.  It is my hope that when we climb out of the current economic disaster caused by the pandemic, the local neighborhood markets of my childhood with re-appear across the country.

In the meantime, there are many places where you can find either a CSA to join or a weekly delivery of food boxes from a local farm.

Community Supported Agriculture survives on the shares purchased by their customers every year.  The money the farmer takes in from the sale of shares determines how much they are able to grow in any given year.  Our local CSA is a five minute drive away, and we pick up our vegetables once a week.

CSAs usually produce organically grown food. In season, ours also offers fresh cut flower arrangements for an additional price.  Individual vegetables are also available to add to your share or for people who just pick up a few things each week.  This is going to be a real blessing for us this year, as the county has cancelled the farmer’s market which usually runs from May to October.

In some communities, you can subscribe to deliveries from an area farm.  Usually you get to choose your delivery schedule from once a week to once a month.  On your delivery day, you will receive a box of vegetables and possibly seasonal fruits. Sometimes there will be a local spot where you will pick up your order.

In these trying times, these services are a godsend.

Stay well!

Food Sensitivities, Ramblings

A Short Note

I haven’t had a lot to add to this blog in awhile. I was always hoping to have more recipes to share, but the last few months have been difficult.  After over three years with no work, the family mood isn’t great as our retirement savings dwindle.

Comments on this blog are fortunately moderated.  Last night, I received a less than pleasant comment about one of my posts that focused on my personal journey to discover the root of my sulphur sensitivity.  This is what blogs are usually about. Our personal journeys.  I tweaked the post a bit and deleted the comment, which definitely was not pertinent to a food blog.

While I’m more than happy to answer polite questions, I will block comments that accuse me of having a negative and discriminatory agenda.

My research is based on my personal experience, the experiences of others who have similar conditions and general scientific research that is available on the internet. I have been an avid student of history my entire life, but I am still of two minds when it comes to genetic research.  It is a double edged sword.  As it is used to trace historic populations and their movements, it is fascinating, but there is always serious potential for genetic information to be used for nefarious purposes.  Any comments I have made about these matters are based on my personal experiences.  I do not parrot long disproved eugenic theories in any way, shape or form.

Ramblings

Another Hello!

I wanted to say “Hi” and “Thanks” to everyone who has followed Deadly Nightshade since it started up. Your interest and support is much appreciated.

I’ve been on the road this past week, helping my aunt and uncle get ready to move into a brand new home they will be sharing with other family members. They are in their 80s now, so it was quite a process, packing to move from a two bedroom house into a spacious granny flat.  But we did it!

I’m on my way home today, so I’ll have the weekend to get get back to work on the blog. I’m planning to tackle wheat next and I can see it turning into more than one post.

I’ll definitely be looking forward to your comments!

Beth

Food Sensitivities, Meals, Ramblings

The Nightshades We Eat or… Not

While the actual Deadly Nightshade plant has purple flowers, it’s less toxic relatives have a mix of colors including white, blue, yellow and purple.

The following plants which produce food we eat are:

Eggplant, Tomatoes, Tomatillos, Pimentos, all Peppers, including Bell, Chili, Cayenne and Paprika, and all varieties of Potato. (Sweet potatoes and yams are not true potatoes).

The last surprising plant in this family is Tobacco.

All nightshades contain toxic compounds called glycoalkaloids.  These compounds act as natural pesticides, protecting the plants from a wide range of insects and other disease bearing micro-organisms.

Sensitive individuals may experience various forms of gastric distress after ingesting these foods.

My experience has been that potatoes do not bother me at all.  Tomatoes, which are also high in sulphur, are a problem, as are raw peppers.  I tend to suffer heartburn and indigestion.  I dislike eggplant and pimentos, so no problems there for me.  I use a lot of paprika in my cooking and it has never been a problem.

When I started working on eliminating tomatoes from my diet, I substituted Mediterranean Organic Organic Fire Roasted Red Peppers in my chili con carne recipe and it turned out delicious.

 

 

 

Food Sensitivities, Meals, Ramblings

Welcome

Welcome to Deadly Nightshade:  Living with Serious Food Sensitivities.

After years of battling health problems caused by the food I was eating and being told repeatedly that I wasn’t allergic to anything, I finally decided to approach things from another perspective.  Nutritionists and other medical personnel were just starting to talk about food sensitivities as opposed to allergies.  If you are truly allergic to something you have a respiratory reaction.  That was never my problem.  Constant gastric distress?  Yes.

I get extremely ill when given sulfa drugs (it runs in the family) and one day it dawned on me. I wasn’t truly allergic to them, but I definitely was sensitive to them.  They made me extremely nauseous, followed by extreme hyperactivity.

And, if sulfa drugs are made from sulfur, then what about the sulfur found in so many foods?  It was the early days of the internet and I ran across an article by a woman who was suffering from an extreme auto-immune disease.  In her research, she discovered that the common denominator was sulfur rich foods. When she eliminated them from her diet, her illness went into remission.

Luckily, I’ve found that sulfur sensitivity is usually a saturation issue.  You can be fine for years, then it hits you.  The good news is, you can detox. I was so ill by this time that I chose to follow her recommendations.  I spent two months eating only carrots, celery, pork, potatoes, white meat poultry and organic melons.  I lost weight, because I was no longer bloating and all my gastric problems went away.

This detox made it possible for me to eat again normally for awhile, but the problems kept coming back as my saturation levels rose again.  And I’m no saint.  It’s hard to avoid everything you enjoy.

Eventually, I started to develop work arounds.  Substituting different vegetables for those that caused me the most problems.  Fortunately, a lot of things are ok if they are organic, because they are not picking up sulfur and sulfites from non-organic fertilizers.

So, while I don’t expect anyone to actually poison themselves with Deadly Nightshade, I did decide to use it as a title for my blog, because there are so many foods in the nightshade family that we eat on a regular basis and tomatoes are the bane of my existence.

As I continue writing this blog, I will be including my work around ideas and recipes that my family and I enjoy.  We will also have guest bloggers from time to time, contributing their recipes and stories of their food sensitivities.