Thursday, June 27, 2013

Mind Your Mind - Anxiety 101

Although I am constantly posting about the body, it is rare that I talk about the mind. Tonight though, I am switching it up.

My name is Danielle, and I am an anxiety sufferer. When I don't get it, which is the majority of the time, life is good.

When anxiety hits though, which is usually unexpected, life is scary. I feel paralyzed, and I have irrational thoughts. The smallest of tasks seem too big and scary to handle. It absolutely sucks. Anxiety is an evil/dumb genius that tries stopping you from doing what you want and enjoying the activities you love.

To quote the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, here is the low down:

  • Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older (18% of U.S. population).
  • Anxiety disorders are highly treatable, yet only about one-third of those suffering receive treatment.
  • Anxiety disorders cost the U.S. more than $42 billion a year, almost one-third of the country's $148 billion total mental health bill, according to "The Economic Burden of Anxiety Disorders," a study commissioned by ADAA (The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry,60(7), July 1999).

Pretty shitty stuff if you ask me. When you have anxiety, you cannot trust the negativity that comes from your thoughts. You have to remember that thoughts are nothing more than, well, thoughts. Nothing more than that.

Try telling me the former when I am suffering from anxiety. It doesn't make any sense when you're in a panicky state.

So far this week, I've suffered a panic attack that sent me lying on my bathroom floor. I've cried out of frustration. I've felt weak and depressed. I haven't wanted to eat. I've paced around my mother-in-law's house, shaky. I've woken up most mornings feeling anxious and out of control.

Also this week, I called my friend when I suffered from the panic attack, who talked me through it. We went to an event in Beverly Hills one hour later so I could write about it. I've stopped crying. I went for sprints, walks, got on a treadmill with a fan on me. I've gone to therapy. I've finished all of my work. I've had writing job interviews and tests. I've talked it out with the people I love. I've gotten through the mornings. And even sans appetite, I've cooked and eaten.

And right now, I am sitting in my backyard, while my fiancé and his friends play darts, dogs next to me, feeling content.

Four hours ago, I felt too paralyzed for cooking, eating, socializing. I cooked and baked a cake. I ate. I am hanging out and having fun.

When your mind is messed up with anxiety, you have to nurture it. No matter mow much you feel like you can't, you can. I am someone who is managing my anxiety as I write.

I am not writing this because I have an answer. However, I want everyone to know that no matter what place you are in, you can get through it.

Remember, THOUGHTS and nothing more than THOUGHTS. They are what fuel anxiety.

It takes work to manage it. Even I can't manage anxiety all the time even though I've had it my whole life. I just want to say from experience though, that it CAN be managed through patience, working out, healthy eating, support of friends and family, therapy, and in some instances, medications.

Remember that, even if you feel bad about telling anyone, do not suffer alone. By reaching out to the people who love me, I was able to get through this anxious week.

I just wanted to throw this out there, and change the discourse of the blog for this post. Mental health is an important issue and it's just not spoken about enough.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Spaghetti and Meatballs for Thought

My nephew Levi loves spaghetti and meatballs. Instead of making them the traditional way, I used ground turkey breast for the meat, and whole wheat spaghetti for the pasta.

If you start them on healthy regimens when they're younger, then they will not care as much when they're older.

When I'm a mom, I don't want to deprive my kids of fun foods like this that aren't the healthiest. Instead, I will do my best to modify, modify, modify.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Baked Salmon with creamy-corn/tomato sauce (the RECIPE!)

Clearly, all, Danielle needs to get her groove back. And when I say that, I mean back into the groove of writing, and posting recipes every week.

Last week, I promised you this baked salmon delight. This one was fun to make, because I decided to play with colors.

When it comes to natural foods, having color on your plate is a good thing. Here is an example of a good article on the subject. 

For this salmon, here is breakdown of what you will need. This recipe feeds four:

- 1 pound salmon (skin off or on)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- dash of salt and pepper
- 1 small carton baby tomatoes
- 1 can of corn
- 4 oz Greek yogurt
- Parsley, to taste

Sauce with a yellow twist. 
-Preheat over to 350
-Mix your olive oil and salt/pepper in a bowl. Use a brush to spread the substance evenly over the salmon. Let it sit while you prep the sauce

- First, user kitchen scissors to cut each baby tomato in half.
- Put a sauce pan on simmer, and add the Greek yogurt. Let it sit for 2 minutes.
- Drain the can of corn. Add the corn to the pan. Let it sit for 2 minutes.
- Add the parsley and the tomatoes. Let it sit for 2 minutes.
- By this time, your oven should be preheated. Pour the sauce on top of your salmon.
- Let it all bake together for 20 minutes, and you've got yourself a delicious main course. It's that easy!

Potatoes, to the right. 
While potatoes aren't the healthiest option, I made some healthier cheesy ones for the side. To do this, I halved 12 baby red potatoes, topped them with a little seasoned salt and fat free cheese, and threw them in the oven for 40 minutes at 350. The cheese comes out crunchy, but it tastes good. Feel free to throw it on afterwards, if you wish.


1 lb Salmon - 650 calories (average)
1 can corn -   130 calories
4 oz Greek yogurt - 67 calories
Small basket yellow tomatoes - about 60
907 calories, or 226.75 calories per serving

Thank you all for being awesome and patient while I transitioned from state-to-state! This week, you can expect a chicken dish and some desserts.

Happy eating (and reading)!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Baked Salmon with creamy corn/tomato sauce

And roasted red potatoes with fat free cheese. I finally have my kitchen back and I'm ecstatic! I can't wait to post more recipes; stay tuned for this one.