Posts Tagged ‘health’


Chunky Me – Further Musings On Low Self Esteem

December 4, 2008

20081201-flokot-visualdiary-june08-1Tuesday 3 June 2008 – 11.05 am

Last year I got quite sick, and the medication they put me on caused sudden weight gain. (It has ‘wonderful’ side effects like weight gain, bone weakness, indigestion, heart burn, adrenal gland failure… it’s basically a last-resort drug to keep one’s body from collapsing – woo hoo.)

It’s pretty depressing to now be 2 sizes larger than a year ago. I used to be ‘skinny.’ Now I just feel fat.  😦

My favourite clothes don’t fit anymore. I feel even worse than normal when I look in the mirror. I’ve got to do something about this.

*Chunky me walking in the shops next to adverts for attractive women’s clothes.


Air Purifiers

August 4, 2008

We recently bought an air purifier for the bedroom, to try and combat allergy problems. We settled on the Airfree P80 and have been impressed with the product. Admittedly, we had problems as it is not readily available in Australia, and it is wired for a British household. I would suggest that a surge protector of some description may be a useful investment for any Aussie who wants to buy it as well as a plug adapter.

Anyway, it is unique in that it works as an incinerator, rather than as a fan – and – filter type machine. It is also left running 24 hours a day and works by progressively removing allergens from the air, and it is totally silent.

For more information, try these links:

Official Site:

In Australia:


Woollen, Low Allergy Bedding

July 10, 2008

We’ve got a few of this company’s pillows. They’re very comfortable and been helpful in reducing polyester in our house.


More Petroleum Free Cleaners

July 9, 2008

We’ve been using their kitchen cleaner and bathroom cleaner sprays.



July 7, 2008

Due to the high levels of allergy problems in our household, we’ve had to look into finding products and brands that will help. So, lately I’ve been switching to plant-based, organic, petroleum-free products.

Here is a Victorian-based company whose cleaning products and haircare products I’ve been using recently:

I’ll add more products as I find them. I’m not into all this commercial stuff, but if it can help other allergy sufferers, then it’ll be worthwhile.

(Disclaimer: Check the ingredients on the labels for yourself. No responsibility taken for anyone following these links.)


Double Tall Soy Caramel Macchiato

June 9, 2008

Copyright F. Lokot 2008

Friday 7 March 2008 – sometime in the afternoon.

After a quick trip to our local multinational coffee corporation branch, we’ve discovered a new way to cleanse one’s system.

– Sudden stomach pains…


Swollen Face In Ice Packed Bandages

June 5, 2008

Copyright F. Lokot 2008

6.00 pm – 24 February 2008

Sunday night, on the couch, recovering from an operation. I must look a miserable sight. My face is swollen and covered in bruises. It hurts to open and close my mouth. I’m living off pureed foods. Glad I don’t have to get my wisdom teeth out more than once.

– tblue dressing gown highlights my facial bruises

– ice packs held on by a bandage


Vegetarian cravings…

April 22, 2008

For me, reading vegetarian recipes is generally a good indicator that either (a) I’m hungry or (b) I’m needing a health fix. In this case it’s probably both! While I do try to eat healthy and exercise, it seems that I became somewhat lazier than usual over the Easter break. So, here I am, exercising to try and work off the flab and browsing recipes to try and reduce my intake of junk foods! My exercise regime mainly consists of regular fast-paced walking most weekdays; and 20-minute aerobics sessions a few times a week.

Add to that, I’m not interested in vegetarian recipes that just take out the meat and add cheese or some sort of soy-based meat substitute. No, let’s get into the real stuff, the raw ingredients combined to make food where you know what it was, it still looks like what it was – where it hasn’t been processed beyond recognition.

I was having a browse yesterday in a bookstore‘s massive health and nutrition section. There were, thankfully, more vegetarian and vegan-friendly books than last time I looked at this topic. There were also the books that are very anti-vegetarian, telling people to eat more meat, more fatty fod, etc. to lose weight!

To try and simplify things, I like to keep the PCRM 4 food groups in mind when planning my menu for the coming weeks:

  1. grains
  2. legumes
  3. fruits
  4. vegetables

This provides a great starting point for developing meals. A variety of each of these types of foods contribute to increased energy and good health (at least, it has for me!).

I also find the Market Fresh website excellent in finding locally available seasonal produce in Victoria (Australia). Here’s what’s available in Victoria in May (from MarketFresh.Com.Au, with detailed descriptions of each product and recipes available on the MarketFresh site):

Avocado (Avocado Pear)
Banana (sugar banana)
Black Sapote (Black persimmon, Chocolate Pudding Fruit)
Breadfruit (Sukun)
Carambola (Five corner, Star fruit)
Custard Apple (Atemoya, Bullocks Heart, Cherimoya, Netted Custard Apple, Sweetsop)
Dragon Fruit (Pitahaya, strawberry pear)
Feijoa (Guavasteen, Pineapple guava)
Guava (Apple guava, Gyayaba, Jambu batu)
Indian Apple
Jakfruit (Nangka Jaca)
Kiwifruit (Chinese gooseberry, Yangtao)
Lime (makrut)
Miracle Fruit (Miraculous berry)
Monstera (Ceriman)
Nashi (Apple-Pear, Asian Pear, Crystal Pear, Oriental Pear, Sand Pear)
Paw Paw (Papaw, Papaya)
Pepino (Melon pear, Papino)
Persimmon (Kaki)
Prickly Pear (Indian Fig)
Soursop (Guanabana)
Sugar Apple (Custard Apple)
Tamarillo (Tree Tomato)
Tamarind (Arabic: tamr hindi (Indian date), Thai: makham, Vietnamese: me )
Amaranth (Bahasa: bayam, Chinese: een choi or edible amaranth, English: Chinese spinach, Greek: vlita (green variety), Thai: phak khom suan, Vietnamese: rau dên)
Bamboo Shoot (Chinese: chuk sun, Thai: nor mai, Vietnamese: măng)
Banana Blossom (Thai: hua pli)
Banana Leaf (Thai: bai tong)
Bean (flat bean, long bean, yard long bean)
Beetroot (Beet)
Bitter Melon (Bahasa: peria, Chinese: foo gwa, English: bitter gourd or balsam pear, Thai: mara)
Bitter Melon Leaf (Bahasa: daun peria, Chinese: foo gwa yip, English: bitter gourd leaves, Thai: bai mara)
Bok Choi (bok choy, pak choi, pak choy, shanghai chinese chard)
Broccoflower (A hybrid mix of cauliflower and broccoli.)
Broccoli (Chinese kale, White flowering broccoli , Gai Lan)
Brussel Sprout
Cabbage (Chinese Mustard Cabbage, leaf mustard, Napa Cabbage, Peking Cabbage, Swatow mustard cabbage, Wombok, Wong Bok)
Capsicum (Chilli, Paprika, Peppers)
Celeriac (Celery root)
Chilli Leaf (English: chilli leaves, Thai: bai prik )
Chinese Boxthorn (Chinese: gau gei choi, English: chinese wolfberry, Vietnamese: kâu ky)
Choi Sum (Chinese: choi sum, English: Chinese flowering cabbage, Thai: pak kwang tung )
Choko (Chayote)
Curry Leaf (Bahasa: daun kari, English: Indian curry leaves, Hindi: meetha neem, Sri Lanka: karapincha )
Drumstick (English: horseradish tree or ben oil tree, Thai: marum, Vietnamese: chum ngây)
Eggplant (Aubergine, Oriental eggplant)
Hairy Melon (Chinese: tseet gwa (mo gwa), English: hairy gourd or fuzzy gourd, Thai: mafeng, Vietnamese: bí đao)
Jute/Jew Mallow (Arabic: melokhia, English: potherb jute or bush okra, Thai: po krachao, Vietnamese: rau đay)
La Lot (, Bahasa: daun kadok, English: wild betel, Thai: bai chaplu , fish plant)
Lettuce (asparagus lettuce, woh sun, stem lettuce)
Long Melon (Fuzzy Melon, White Gourd, Winter Melon)
Lotus Root (Bahasa: ubi teratai, Chinese: lin or leen ngau or lianou, English: lotus root, Thai: rak bua)
Luffa (angled luffa, Chinese okra, loohfas, ridged gourd, ridged melon, smooth luffa, sponge gourd, vegetable/bonnet gourd)
Mache (Corn Salad, Lamb’s Lettuce)
Okra (Bahasa: bendi, Chinese: huang qiu kui or yong kok dau, English: lady’s fingers, Thai: krachiap)
Pandanus (Bahasa: daun pandan, English: pandan or fragrant screwpine, Thai: toei horm)
Paw Paw Blossom (Papaw Blossom, Papaya Blossom)
Pea Shelling
Pea Snow (Chinese: Hoh laan dau, English: sweet pea or Chinese pea, Thai: tua lan tau)
Pea Sugarsnap (Chinese: Hoh laan dau, English: sweet pea or Chinese pea, Thai: tua lan tau )
Peperomia (English: peperomia or crab claw plant, Thai: phak krasang, Vietnamese: càng cua)
Pumpkin Leaf (English: pumpkin Leaves)
Radish (Cheng loh baak, Daikon, Green oriental radish, Lo Baak, Long white radish, Red radish)
Shallot (Eschallot, Shallot)
Silverbeet (Swiss Chard)
Spinach (Malabar Spinach, Slippery Vegetable, English Spinach, Swamp Cabbage, True Spinach, Water Spinach)
Spring Onion (Bahasa: daun bawang, English: Eschallots or green onion, Thai: ton horm, Vietnamese: hành lá)
Sprout (Alfalfa, Bean Sprouts, Mung Bean Sprouts, Snow pea shoots)
Squash (Button Squash, Scallopini)
Sugar Cane (English: sugar cane, Thai: oi )
Sweet Corn (Corn)
Sweet Potato (Bahasa: ubi keledek, Chinese: Faan sue, English: sweet potato or sweetpotato or kumara, Thai: man thet, Vietnamese: khoai lang)
Sweet Potato Leaf (English: Sweet potato leaves, Vietnamese: Iá khoai lang )
Taro (Bahasa: ubi keladi, Chinese: woo tau, English: Taro or dasheen, Thai: peuak)
Taro Shoot (Chinese: woo hap, English: taro stems, Thai: born)
Tatsoi (Chinese: taai goo choi, English: rosette bok choi or Chinese flat cabbage, Japanese: tatsoi)
Vegetable Spaghetti (Spaghetti Marrow, Spaghetti Squash)
Vietnamese Balm (English: Vietnamese balm, Thai: phak leuan)
Watercress (Chinese: sai yeung choi, English: watercress, Thai: phakkat-nam, Vietnamese: xà lách son)
Winged Bean (Bahasa: kacang botol, Chinese: yi dou, English: asparagus bean or Goa bean, Thai: tua pu)
Witlof (Belgian Endive, Chicory, Witloof)
Yam (Bahasa: ubi kemali, Chinese: da shu or tai shue or shuyu, English: yam or water yam, Thai: man)
Yam Bean (Bahasa: bangkuang, Chinese: sa got, English: jicama or yam bean, Thai: man gaeo)
Zucchini (Courgette)
Zucchini Flower
Almond Nut
Basil (sweet basil, thai basil)
Bitter Herb (Chinese: foo yip, English: bitter herb, Thai: phak kuang, Vietnamese: rau đăng)
Brazil Nut
Cashew Nut
Chive (Onion Chives)
Coriander (Chinese: Uen sai, English: coriander or cilantro, Thai: pak chee )
Fenugreek (Hindi: methi)
Galangal (Bahasa: lengkuas, Chinese: hang dou kou, English: Siamese ginger or galingale, Thai: kha)
Garlic (Bahasa: bawang putih, Chinese: da suan or suan tau, English: garlic, Thai: gratiem)
Ginger (Bahasa: halia, Chinese: geung, English: ginger, Thai: khing)
Kaffir Lime Leaf (Kaffir Lime Leaves)
Lemon Grass (Bahasa: serai, Chinese: heong mau, English: lemon grass, Thai: takrai)
Macadamia Nut
Marjoram (Oregano, Sweet Marjoram)
Mint (common mint)
Pecan Nut
Perilla (Chinese: gee so or jen, English: beefsteak plant or shiso, Japanese: shiso (green) & aka shiso (red))
Pine Nut
Pistachio Nut
Rice Paddy Herb (English: Rice paddy herb or finger grass, Thai: phak kayaeng)
Thyme (Citrus Thyme)
Turmeric (Bahasa: kunyit, English: turmeric, Thai: khamin)
Water Chestnut (Chinese: ma taai, English: Chinese water chestnut, Thai: haeo jin)


A Lesson in Basic Nutrition

April 3, 2008

This is from the website of Dr McDougall, who uses vegan diets to help people combat serous illness.

Nutrients are substances which are essential for the maintenance, repair, growth, and reproduction of all our body tissues. Our foods contain the following basic nutrients: carbohydrates, fats, proteins, and water. [Read more…]


Is cow’s milk necessary for calcium intake?

April 3, 2008

I was raised in dairy farming country. So, it was taken for granted that full cream milk was part of the staple diet. We got ours straight from the vats in our grandparents’ farm dairy. Full cream milk, completely untreated – it turned out to be a great way to get a huge bum (in my experience)!

When I became a vegetarian, it became necessary to educate myself on the dietary needs of the average human. And, when I was pregnant / breastfeeding (at one point, I was both at the same time), I needed to not only know for myself, I had to explain my dietary choices…

So, was cow’s milk necessary when I was feeding my babies? Well, no. In fact, in the case of my children, dairy gives them severe eczema and stomach pain. So, I avoided dairy.

PCRM’s fact sheets on vegetarian lifestyles are really handy – here’s a link to their fact sheet on calcium and bone strength in a dairy-free diet:


Allergies Suck

February 12, 2008

Visual Diary Allergies

Monday 7 January 2008 – 8.55pm

The disease* has become a prison. I can’t step outside. I hate the sickness so much. I hope there’s a cure.

Having an ok day… Spring cleaning in mid-summer. Better late than never!

~My House~

(these trees become polleny in December [allergenic])

(when this plant flowers I end up lying in emergency ward in hospital)

(these trees are poisonous)


*I have serious allergy problems. They’re potentially life threatening and no one knows what causes them.


A PS – looks like my body’s recovered from most of whatever the problem was. I still have allergy problems but not as severe as before.

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