March 19, 2019

A Perfect Bloodhound Morning

2019 Mar 19

It was a great morning to walk. It was identical weather to yesterday morning, around 31°, and signs of heavy frost melting slowly. No wind is always nice and of course Stella dictated our start time by waking up from her morning after-breakfast-nap and rehydrating herself with nonstop drinking. That always gives me time to get a jacket on, my sock hat and grab my camera.

While I was taking my daily picture of the field across the highway, Stella wasn't waiting for me and she was well on the way of starting her morning walk. She brought a few surprises but one you will not be able to see in the pictures. That is because it involved sounds ... verbal herding ... there wasn't any.  I was SHOCKED and HAPPY !!!

2019 Mar 19IMG_4160IMG_4162

As she followed the path she was bypassing her normal stops in the field where she finds strong deer scent or deer scat. While I followed her I did not say a word to her. I was enjoying the sky, looking into the woods and hearing a million birds talking.


A reader sent me a very valuable link yesterday after she had read about my diet changes and food discussions these past few days. Nutrition Optimizer did all the analyzing work for me and it was free. Since he is a smart engineer he was able to design a system that analyzes 'nutrient density' in all the food we eat. To get a detailed analysis about me all I had to do was download my information from Cronometer's "servings" file, then upload that cvs file into their website.

They will let you eat any diet you choose and will give out a detail nutritional list of food you eat for each diet, whether you are an athlete needing performance or a couch potato wanting to lose weight. At no cost he will show you where you are deficient in nutrients and then suggest a short list of foods to eat to make up those deficiencies. I chose not to pay the ~$10 for more detailed food lists and menus.


It was interesting to see that they suggested I go back to eating seafood, poultry and beef. It included grains but only two ... oat bran and wheat bran, both found in oatmeal and a good quality wheat or in multi-grain bread. Nothing was listed under "Nuts & Seeds" except coconut water. The veggies did not list broccoli nor carrots .... but remember this list of foods was to optimize the nutrients I am not getting enough of.


So of course after looking at it yesterday afternoon and adding a new shopping list in my app AnyList, I found some valuable information in their FAQ section of their website. After all the reading last night and looking at different food lists suggested for each of the diets I have eaten in the past and currently ... I had only one question.

Do I eat only the foods they listed on the short list to make up for those deficiencies or add that list to the foods I currently eat? There were a few veggies and fruits listed to make up for my nutrient deficiencies that I don't buy ... like asparagus and seaweed. They only listed blackberries and boysenberries for fruit. They listed lentils but no other kind of beans, which are a major source of protein for any plant based diet.


Because of that, I think this short list of foods, 30 of them, is to be added to the food I am already eating and in some cases I already am, just not enough.

They also set my macronutrient limits such as calories, carbohydrates, protein, and fats. They were much different from what I had used in the past couple of months eating something between a Keto and Paleo diet. They were also much different than the Plant Based diet I just changed to. Based on 1,850 calories per day, those limits were:

Protein - a MIN of 125g .... Fat - a MAX of 95g ... Carbs - a MAX NET of 125g per day.


Without beef and seafood these past few days I have found it very hard to eat enough protein on a daily basis. That includes adding black and garbanzo beans to my large daily salad, something I have eaten every day for years.


So I will continue to eat, add the foods they suggested to give me optimized nutrients, log in what I eat into Cronometer. In two weeks I'll upload that servings file again and see what kind of adjustments they tell me to make.

A couple of interesting things were pointed out in the review of Dr. Greger's book "How Not To Die". That's the book I had the state  library system send a copy to my local library for pickup. Dr. Greger stresses a plant-based diet is the best one to eat. Yet, Nutrition Optimizer pointed out that he is also on the Board of Directors for the Humane Society.

Does that influence his writing and his beliefs in a plant-based diet is the best to eat? I think that is a valid question and one to think about.


Nutrition Optimizer does like what Dr. Joel Fuhrman has to say in his book Eat To Live, the book I pulled off my shelf the other day. I bought that when it came out in 2003. Of course in the label of the book it says "Lose 20 lbs Or More In 6 Weeks" ... but I have always found as long as I am eating grains, and a lot of carbs those lbs do not disappear easily if at all.

There were so many of these deer tracks this morning I could have filled the blog up with them. This is me turning back in the direction we came from but they are very fresh prints from earlier this morning.


As you see, Stella was doing the walk on her own this morning. She leisurely strolled, sniffed a lot, ate nothing and wasn't stubborn. That's a perfect morning for any bloodhound owner ... with 'stubborn' being the keyword there.  :)

As I looked through all of the nutrition reports they listed for each type of eating there was one word that kept popping up into my thoughts ... Moderation ... They were not leaning toward Keto or Paleo nor were they suggesting a 100% plant-based diet either. There was meat, seafood, low-fat dairy, eggs, only cheddar cheese, in my case. The way to eat by their recommendation was the way I have been eating for the past two to three months.

Maybe I was smarter than I thought and just maybe 'moderation' should be put back on the table.


I will say just in the past few days I have cut out chicken, meat and seafood along with dairy I do feel hungry more times during the day than I did before making this change. The cravings for food after 8pm has always been there and is a constant battle. Sorry but drinking water to wait out the 20 minutes of screaming for food, doesn't do it for me. An apple does though.


So in conclusion of this food discussion, check out Nutrient Optimizer for curiosity if nothing else and I will continue to think about what food I should eat. Out of all the information I have read the last two to three years about what to eat, their focus on nutrients is one I find to be the most important. Now, don't get me wrong, there were some foods that are considered nutrient and healthy for you, where they rated it at zero or below in their 'nutrient rating' which made me shake my head and wonder.

Information overload.


I think I am leaning toward just eating healthy food. I'll add those foods they sent me to fill those nutrient deficiencies which will also eliminate those hunger cravings I have.


Every walk Stella gives me the chance to get ahead of her so I am in a good position to take pictures of her running. For that to happen though, she has to trot or run. As you can see, she was only into 'leisurely strolling' this morning ... the perfect bloodhound pace.


With good weather, I am going to pull out a shovel from the shed and head down to the culvert next to the highway. I need to shovel all of MY driveway gravel that was washed away with the heavy rains last week. That overflowing rain water ran down the driveway and cut about a 3"x 6" ditch in hard packed gravel and carried a lot of the gravel into the grass ditch culvert.


I am also going to get my pruning shears and a pruning saw out then cut a few small Sassafras trees down at the end of the driveway along the bank on the other side of the fence. They are not supposed to grow taller than 20' but I don't want to find out if that is true or not.


For some reason the State of Indiana will not let me pay my state income tax bill when I e-file my state taxes. Yet after I printed the Indiana state filing instructions it gives me a website link to make that payment. The problem is THIS YEAR, the online e-file will not let me file the state taxes because of that warning. I can't get past that to even e-file the taxes.

So from what I have read I have two options.

  1. Mail my Indiana State Taxes in by Certified Mail, signature required when received and then make my payment on their online site.

  2. Mail my Indiana State Taxes in by Certified Mail, signature required when received and include a hand written check for my balance owed.
This is 2019 !!!!!!

I was able to file my state taxes electronically for over 10 years and make my payment electronically for over 10 years at the same time I e-filed. WTF  Indiana ???? If there are any blog readers from Indiana please chime in .. I'd love to know what the problem is and if you had the same problem.


It was another successful morning walk for Stella. She was happy and I was happy. As I sat down to move the photos to the computer and then to the blog, she curled up behind my desk chair to sleep a little. Of course that means she plops her 83 lbs up against the legs of my chair so I am pinned in next to my desk, preventing me from rolling the chair back far enough to stand or walk away .. without waking her up.

Who knows ... it might be time for lunch, or a snack and she would never want to miss that.


Driveway gravel recovery, tree trimming and washing the dishes are the goals today here in 'the tropics' of Southern Indiana.

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