Health 101: Fighting acidity and reflux

Hi Lovelies,

I had been meaning to write this post for quite some time as I have combated with this illness so far 3 times in my life. It seems to be a common problem with a lot of people these days. It arrives slowly but then takes forever to leave. Today I am going to talk about things that lead to acidity and reflux as well as things that will help it. No this isn’t going to be like other posts where I am going to give you short term solutions or home made remedies, instead I am going to talk about lifestyle changes and breakthroughs that most people usually ignore and dont think will help. And ofcourse as always I will talk about some common misconceptions.

My first battle with acid reflux started when I was a teenager. I recall sleepless nights and becoming insomniac. I would get up and chew pieces of bread all night but the pain wont go away. This bout lasted me a good 7 months till I finally saw a doctor who hit the nail on the head. The acid and reflux wasn’t just because of my diet but it was also due to stress and anxiety! Ofcourse when we get sick we only worry more and more everyday. Which aggravates the issue further. So key point here for long time or on and off sufferers is to find ways to relax! Find activities and hobbies to make  part of your lifestyle that make you happy and help you forget about your problems for a bit. I have noticed dancing, exercise and music helps me tremendously. There is always meditation and yoga. Some people like to play video games etc!

But that wasn’t the break through the doctor found she not only gave me some OTC acid blocking pills to take for 6 weeks but she also put me on anti anxiety pill for a few days as needed and lo and behold my long standing problem of 7 months went away. The same OTC pills didn’t work on their own prior to trying the anti anxiety pills. Now I am not telling you to abuse those pills. I am just saying you can always find ways to calm yourself down the natural way.

The second bout came when my doctor put me on naproxen for my foot pain. Most people know NSAID (anti inflammatory medication) tear up your stomach linning. Well a week later I was in stomach agnoy again. That is when I discovered Apple sauce. It became a breakfast staple for me every morning. Well sometimes I ate them for lunch too. Anytime I felt bad I ate them. Lo and behold the problem went away in a few weeks.

And then it happened again earlier this year. On January 3rd 2014, I realized the problem raised its ugly head again. I was put back on the meds again, both OTC and anti anxiety. I avoided taking the anxiety meds and tried to relax on my own. I stopped eating spicy food. Cut out coffee chocolate , juices and tea! Anything with flavor? forget it! No fried food nothing delicious. The pain wont go away. 6 weeks later I see my doctor again. This doctor is amazing and very positive she thought I was too young to be put on more meds and asked me a key question: “how much water do you drink?” and I realized I actually dont drink water apart from when taking meds or a glass before bed. She was shocked and I was embarrassed. I was asked to drink 8 glasses a day for 2 weeks and come back if I am not better and stop eating so clean. She wanted me to have a balanced diet.

It was really hard to drink 8 glasses a day. I was feeling extremely full and pudgy all day. Thats when I realized reading somewhere long time ago that if your stomach becomes too alkaline (ph base) your stomach produces more acid. That is where the misconception comes in. You think you are having acidity and you eat better only to make your self alittle too alkaline in your stomach. I was like let me find some french fries and add them to my diet that day at lunch. Guess what? it was like magic the pain went down! I slowly reduced the amount of water to 6 glasses and started eating a more balanced diet. And bam the problem was resolved.

Now why am I telling you all this? So you can try this out for yourself:

1) Drink more water!

2)Drink water half an hour to 20 minutes before you eat, especially if you are planning to eat something spicy or greasy. Well even coffee or chocolate. Think of it as a cleanser. It goes into your stomach and gets rid of all the toxins. So once all the acid and bad stuff is gone your stomach can start healing and feel happy.

3)If you see symptoms coming on, increase your uptake of water and cut down on extremely spicy, acidic or caffeinated products for a bit.

4) Apple sauce, the all nautral kind is a good neutralizing base to be eaten first thing in the morning while you are still experiencing symptoms for a few days.

5)Definitely raise the head of your bed for as long as your symptoms persists. I am over my pain but I am still sleeping with several pillows just in case!

6)Do not eat and lay down! Imaging all the food and acid going up your esophagus you don’t want that!

7) From my personal experience working out on a full stomach or semi full stomach brings on my pain. So now I work atleast 2.5 or 3 hours after eating.

8)Eat at regular intervals, smalls and frequent meals till the symptoms are gone. Keeping your stomach empty will aggravate the issue.

9)Wear looser clothes! Especially things that dont sit on your waist because thats where your stomach and esophagus meet. Loose pants for men. Low rise pants or better yet dresses for women.

But the main cure is RELAXATION AND WATER! these two paired together with a balanced diet will knock the socks off your acidity and reflux!

Let me know if you try this out and if it helps. Also feel free to add to comments anything that has helped you get rid of your reflux and acidity.

 

 

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Ropa Vieja with Avocado Cilantro Sauce – My Spicy Take on a traditional cuban dish

Hi lovelies,

I have been cooking alot lately. I have diligently taking pictures of everything too in hopes that I will get some time to share those recipes with you. I am alittle too excited to share this recipe with you only because it turned out exactly how I imagined.  Ropa Vieja is a traditional cuban dish made out of slow cooked shredded beef. I first came across this dish 6 hours away from where I live on a trip to the beach. It was one of the most delicious things I have ever eaten. Ofcourse now I cant drive 6 hours on the whim to go eat there every month so I decided to wing it on my own. I looked up several recipes but when it came down to making it, I decided I am going to make it spicy. Make it like how a south asian will cook beef lol. Here is my take on the dish. Let me know what you think :)

I also recently invested in a giant slow cooker so there is alot of slow cooking going on in my house.

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Ingredients:
1.5 pound Flank Steak

1/2 can tomato paste (3oz)

1 Chopped onion

3 largely chopped garlic cloves

1/4 cup Red wine vinegar

Salt as per taste

2 tsp White pepper

2 tsp Turmeric

4 tsp Cumin

4 tsp crushed red pepper

4 tsp paprika

4 tsp cayenne pepper

 

Ingredients for Sauce:

1 Avacado

1 clove garlic

3 tsp Lemon juice

3 tablespoon Ranch

1/4 cup milk

Handful of Cliantro

Salt as per your taste

 

Instructions:

1- Marinate the meat with salt, cumin, turmeric, white pepper, red crushed pepper, paprika and cayenne and refrigerate for atleast 2 hours to overnight

2- Place the chopped onions and garlic at the bottom of the slow cooker.

3- Place the meat on top of the onions and garlic

4- Pour Red wine vinegar and Tomato paste over the meat.

5- Close the lid and cook on low for about 5 to 6 hours. Add water as needed to keep the meat moist.

6- Once the meat is cooked and cooled off take it out and shred it before plating.

 

Instruction to make the Sauce:

1- Blend all the ingredients together in the blender.

2- Pour over the meat and rice and serve.

 

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Fitness 101: Delicious Healthy Banana and Peanut Butter Breakfast/Snack/Post work out Drink

Hi Dearies!

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        I am very excited to share this recipe with everyone because if I like it am sure others would love to enjoy it as well as I am very picky with food and drinks specifically breakfast. I had been drinking this on and off when I felt like it as a treat for the past year or two but recently with my I am going to get fit phase I ended modifying the recipe a bit to make it more health friendly. You can skip the soy protein if you dont care for this drink as a protein shake or booster and just enjoy this drink as a delicious treat with all the ingredients that most homes have at hand :)

This shake is like a milkshake you buy from the ice cream store! Trust me you do not feel you are drinking some protein shake what so ever! I mean Banana and Peanut Butter? mmmmm. Just finished mine for breakfast today and I am already looking at the empty glass wishing I had a second one. Well I wont recommend two glasses at once lol but its just too yummy to not want more :) Try it out and let me know if you like it.

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Ingredients:

1/2 Banana

1 tablespoon peanut butter

8oz (1 glass) Fat Free milk

1 teaspoon sugar (You don’t have to add sugar, I do because I like to make it just like an ice cream shake)

1 scoop Genisoy Soy Protein in Chocolate flavor

Instructions:

1- Dump all ingredients in the blender

2- Blend well

See how simple is that? Breakfast/Postworkout Drink/snack done in minutes and possibly gone even in less than minute cause its delicious :)

 

 

Oh I am in Love! Swedish Meatballs!

Hi sweeties,

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Its been a while since I did a recipe post. The plethora of my food posts is just growing in number with no time to sit, write and post them, at hand. But unlike fashion, food never goes out of style haha :)

Most of my regular readers already know that I moved to a new apartment recently and we all know it initiates atleast a dozen trips to Ikea. On this particular occasion I was famished after work and hubby and I decided to grab a quick bite at their food court before digging our hands into some shopping. There was this beautiful poster board displaying Swedish meatball platter. My heart skipped a beat and I begged God that please please let these be made out of beef (I don’t eat pork) But deep down inside I already knew that most European Countries and US states sell minced meat products made out of pork instead of beef or chicken. Sadly upon inquiring my fears came true and I couldn’t enjoy any swedish meatballs. To add insult to injury while I was frolicking around Ikea the ad on their speaker kept playing stating “Have you tried our Swedish Meatballs yet? You don’t know the pleasure you’re missing so stop by….” or something on those lines.

Last night while thinking what to cook an idea hits me. If I can’t enjoy them outside then I can make them at home! I went through a gazillion top chefs’ recipes online and then decided to tweak several of them into one, to get the most ideal recipe for my taste. Now I have never had Swedish Meatballs before so I can’t vouch for the taste but I can atleast say this much- Swedish or not….they turned out scrumptious! Hubby was happy and I ate two of them before I had even finished cooking! I am glad I have leftovers for lunch today cause guess what? Right after I finish this post I am about to dig in :)

Ingredients for Meatballs:

  • 1/2 Onion
  • 1/4 Cup Bread Crumbs
  • 1/4 Cup Milk
  • 1 Egg
  • Salt as per your taste
  • Pepper as per your taste
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil for sauteing
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil for cooking Meatballs
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 1 1/2 pound ground beef (you can use turkey or chicken if you like)

Preparing Meatballs:

1. Chop the Onion and Garlic into really tiny pieces.

2. Combine Milk and Bread crumbs in a small bowl and let them settle.

3. Heat oil on a skillet and then saute onions till they get soft.

4. Add garlic to the skillet next and then continue sauteing till onions turn translucent.

5. Take the skillet off the heat and let it cool off for a bit while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

6. In a large bowl whisk the egg and then throw in the milk/bread crumb mixture, sauteed onions and garlic, meat and salt pepper.

7. Gently mix in all the ingredients together but make sure you don’t handle the meat too much otherwise the meatballs will turn hard.

8. Make about 20 to 25 tiny meatballs and let them sit on a platter.

9. Next heat the Olive Oil and Butter on the same skillet that you used to cook the onion and garlic.

10. Cook about 10 to 13 meatballs at a time. Brown them on each side, turning as needed.

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Ingredients for the Sauce:

  • 1/4 Onion
  • 1/4 Cup Flour
  • 1/4 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 4 Cups Beef Broth
  • Salt and pepper according to your taste

Procedure to Make Sauce

1. Chop up onions and garlic

2. Saute Onions and Garlic in the same pan that you cooked the meatballs in. (Add more oil if needed)

3. Create a well of onions and garlic with a hole in the center.

4. Melt butter in the well of onions and garlic.

5. Pour the flour in the melted butter and blend in with the onions and garlic.

6.Once the flour turns brown (About 2 to 3 minutes) pour in beef broth slowly constantly stirring, to avoid the flour from clumping or forming

dumplings.

7. Once all the flour and blended in the broth, pour in heavy cream and let the sauce simmer for a few minutes.

8. Add salt and pepper as per your taste.

8.Once a desired consistency is reached for the sauce (it will thicken the longer it cooks) drop in all the meatballs and let them heat through.

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Serve the Meatballs with pasta of your choice as I did or you can always serve it with mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce like in Sweden :) I was in a little hurry this time around so didnt go all out to make cranberry sauce or potatoes.

Hope you enjoy the recipe. If you do try it out, let me know if you like it or if any improvements can be made!

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Georgetown Cupcake Promotion for Valentines Day 40% off again!

Hi lovelies,

I have been MIA for the entire month of february for which I am really sad because I had tons of ideas for Valentines day but in my defense I have grad school to catch up on and we have officially moved into our new apartment. I am running on 2 to 3 hours of sleep everyday if not less than that on certain days because my kitties seem to be very upset with the move they haven’t fully adjusted and one of them is constantly crying!

Anyway now to important topic at hand. Georgetown Cupcake’s new season premiers today and I was 99% sure they will do another question answer deal with 40% off associated with it. And viola I was just notified of it.

So the question is: In tonight’s ALL NEW episode of DC Cupcakes, what is the winning bid for Sophie and Katherine’s cupcake creation at the county fair?

The Answer is: 3800

How to redeem your 40% :

Hurry this is a one day only promotion so don’t waste time. You can pre-order your cupcakes and get them another day or even place an order upto a month ahead. So think about that birthday, party , or any other celebration coming up! Or if nothing important is coming up you can just enjoy the cupcakes for yourself :) I mean they are really delicious!

Also incentive for ordering ahead is that you don’t have to wait in line! You can skip the long line and walk right in! And trust me the lines get really long! People wait as long as 2 hours in line depending on which location you head to.

o redeem, enter the correct answer as a number (no spaces or punctuation marks) into the promo code box on the checkout page when placing your order online. Discount will be automatically applied.

Offer valid from 7:00pm Thursday 2/14 – 11:59pm Friday 2/15.

New Years’ Eve: Outfit and 3 Course Home Cooked Meal

Hi dearies – HAPPY NEW YEAR

I am  back in the grind of the work life starting yesterday but I wanted to make this year a better one for myself and my blog. oh and not to forget my family. I would have to say the last week of December 2012 was the best ever for me. I had time off from work, got to spend time with family and didn’t have to look at the clock ticking going “times running out and I have so much to do still” Life just came to a halt nothing mattered except good company, food and laughter!

I want to extend this into my year 2013. I want to be a positive happy me, the one who had her head on straight during the holidays. So I am coming up with cures for stress and recipes on how to avoid it when it surfaces its ugly head. Look out for those on my blog this year :)

Anyhow so this new years I decided to stay in. First we were going to have a house party but due to us moving out in about a month due to mold allergies in my current place I am in the midst of packing. Therefore the party got cancelled and I found out they had “The Twilight Zone” marathon on for 48 hours straight so that led to a lot of snuggle time, snacks and shrieks of excitement from me on all the spooky stories they played.

My inner chef woke up and wanted to prepare a meal from scratch. The menu got changed last minute because I didn’t want to do the tried and tested cause oh that would just be so boring! After careful thinking for about an hour and looking into the refrigerator and pantry I came up with the following menu:

1) Mozzarella Cheese Balls

2) Italian Style Garlic Oregano Chicken with veggies mixed in squash farfalle pasta

3) Callas (Dessert made of fried rice balls yum!)

I will be posting recipes to these items on here soon so if your interested check them out :)

I also wore a non traditional New Years Dress for me. Most of the time I wear tight fitting or bodycon style dresses. This time I wanted to wear something frilly, girlie and fun and found this perfect dress in my closet that I haven’t touched the entire year of 2012! What do you think?

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NewYears

Georgetown Cupcake Does it again 40% Off Today Only

Hi Sweeties!

I have been craving Georgetown cupcakes desperately and my friends visiting them over the break and posting pictures on facebook wasn’t helping either. I am so glad I held out for so long and decided I will be going to get them first weekend in December because I got the amazing good news again today from Georgetown Cupcakes

 

They are doing their Happy Holidays Sale where you can get 40% off your entire order! Yes one more time 40% trust me that is big cut on these cupcakes because they are the best things I have ever had! All you have to do is place your order today before 11:59pm i.e 26th November 2012.

Some key things to keep in mind:

1) You can place an order today for a future date so birthday cupcakes for someone close to you in the near future? done! Cupcakes for Valentines days? Done you know the drill :)

2) You dont have to be located in one of the store locations because Georgetown cupcakes delivers nationwide. So now with the 40% off you can actually get your hands on these yummy cakes the whole east coast…oh wait wait now even our folks on west coast in LA are raving about :)

Anyhow here is the promo code to use before 11:59pm tonight : HOLIDAY2012

If I have just made your day like georgetown cupcakes made mine please show support and love by liking my FB page to keep up with these deals HERE

Eggspectation – Ellicott City, MD

 

Eggspectation is a restaurant that all of a sudden kept popping up for my attention everywhere I looked. Urbanspoon, groupon, my facebook feed and what not! I started to salivate when I finally decided to look up their menu and decided that we have to go there. I was expecting it to be like a run of the mill franchise restaurant when it comes to the ambiance but I was extremely surprised as I walked in the door and felt it was decorated for fall and had a small restaurant feel to it. My world was instantly transformed into a cozy little cottage with a bookshelf and a fireplace and eating pancakes on a dinning table full of friends. Oh maybe a scene out of Harry potter where all the wizarding students sit and eat their dinners. Ah this could just be my imagination running wild…mildly. The prices were alittle high ranging from 10 to 22 dollars for an entree which I wasn’t expecting but the food that we ordered wasn’t bad and the portions were pretty big.

 

Hubby and Mike ordered the eggstravaganza breakfast platters. Hubby substituted french toast for pancakes and I am glad he did cause we got to try both of those items and trust me they were delicious! The pancakes were fluffy and moist. And the french toast was the right amount of sweet and moist! The eggs were requested scrambled and were light , fluffy and airy as described by both boys (I rarely eat eggs by themselves cause they give me severe stomach ache) The potatoes that came with the platter were mild in flavor but there was something about it that just made them unique I wish hubby had more on his plate so I could have stolen more lol

I am not sure but I always pull random stunts like these where I go to a breakfast place and order a non breakfast item hence I ended up with cajun Alfredo pasta that came with butternut squash soup!  We decided to order fried green tomatoes as appetizer. The fried green tomatoes were delicious. The butternut squash soup was more like a dessert but that doesnt mean it wasn’t delicious. It gave me the warm and fuzzy feeling you expect from a pie! The cajun Alfredo Pasta was alright nothing terrible but nothing too exciting but but but…the leftovers when heated over the frying pan next day were unlike any other I have tasted before. The pasta had this sear on it which gave it a nice smokey taste. I jokingly told my husband that if I were to ever buy cajun pasta from there I’d bring the entire thing home to heat on the stove and eat cause it tastes extremely yummy that way.

 

So all in Eggspectation met my Eggpectations….yeah while waiting for food we played this game where we added eggs in all the “e” words we used …dorky? yes….but thats who we are and thats why I love my time hanging out with the boys so much.

 

Answer to Georgetown Cupcake 40% off Sale!

Alright Lovelies,

I have finished watching today’s DC cupcake show. To recap Georgetown Cupcake stores located in DC, MD, NY and MA are giving everyone 40% off their entire order starting 12am to 11:59pm on 10th October 2012. As I promised in my previous post I will be providing you with the answer to the question

Please like my facebook page if I have helped you get one step closer to your fave cupcakes and PLEASE PLEASE post pictures of you with your cupcakes on my facebook page! I would LOVE to see everyone digging into their cupcakes!

Question: ?In Tuesday’s All New Episode of DC Cupakes, What is the name of the sports bar that Mommy and Katherine visit while in Boston

ANSWER IS: mcgreevys

(Check out the sports bar page)

To redeem, enter the correct answer as one word (no spaces or punctuation marks) into the promo code box on the checkout page when placing your order online. Discount will be automatically applied.

Offer valid on Wednesday, October 10 only from 12:00am – 11:59pm

Are you ready to order? Which flavors are you getting?

Georgetown cupcakes does it again! 40% off entire order sale! Attention VA, DC, MD, NY AND MA!

So what are the odds that my, correction everyone’s fave bakery Georgetown Cupcakes a.k.a DC cupcakes will have their 40% sale off an entire order again? The cupcakes are delicious unfortunately haven’t given their coffee a try since I am always alittle too excited to walk in the door leaving the miles of line behind me in dust as ordering over the phone implies you dont have to wait in line of close to or even over 100 some people everyday!

Rules:

The rules are simple just like last time they are expecting us to watch their show on TLC tonight i.e 10/9/2012 “DC Cupcakes: The wicked good show” and find the answer to this one simple question!

Question: In Tuesday’s All New Episode of DC Cupakes, What is the name of the sports bar that Mommy and Katherine visit while in Boston?

I will be posting the answer on my blog in a new post right after I get the answer from the show! So feel free to stop by and check back tonight :) You know I won’t let you down. – ANSWER POSTED HERE NOW

To redeem, enter the correct answer as one word (no spaces or punctuation marks) into the promo code box on the checkout page when placing your order online. Discount will be automatically applied.

Offer valid on Wednesday, October 10 only from 12:00am – 11:59pm

oh I can’t wait to get my hands on these cupcakes! I haven’t had them since the beginning of summer 2012! For those of you know that are lost within the sea of flavors…give milk chocolate birthday cake a try unlike most other chocolate frosted cupcake this one actually tastes like milk chocolate frosting! Sooooo delicious and you can ever go wrong with some red velvet yummy!