Preparing for Hand Surgery – Thumb Arthroplasty

 

 

Hello Ahimsa Lifers!
Well the time has come, I am going to have Thumb Arthtroplasty in just a few weeks.
If you are a follower of The Ahimsa Life you know I have struggled over the years with Diverticulitis, Micro Colitis (Specifically LC) and Arthritis. Arthritis seems to be very common in those of us who suffer from an IBD, and to make matters worse I spent much of my career working with my hands.

I have arthritis in both thumbs. I have had cortisone injections in both hands for years, I caved in and started taking NAIADS as well, but having an IBD, it might have helped my hands but it irritated my LC (Lymphostetic Colitis) so I had to stop taking them. I have done braces, ice, heat creams and more. My doctor has been offering me the surgery for about a year now, and I really just didn’t want to do it. Last year I tore a tendon in my right thumb and was in a cast for 6 weeks, the memory was fresh and I did not look forward to being in a cast for that long again.

Fast forward to today, well, I changed my mind. Long story short, over the last year the pain has gotten worse and nothing seems to be helping.

Knowing what its like to be in a hand cast so long, I am starting my preparations for both surgery day and after to make things easier. Here are my tips.

Surgery day –

Wear sweats, not leggings. They say be comfortable and last time I went in I wore a big sweatshirt and some leggings. I was thinking the leggings would be good since there was no zippers or buttons to have to fasten and they just pull on. Was I wrong! I still needed help getting them on because they are so darn tight, they do not seem tight at all when you have two working hands. This time I am opting for a loose pair of sweats, easy to pull up on my own.

As for the sweat shirt – The arm hole barley fit over my dressing. The soft cast you leave with is bulky, really bulky, you are sore and swollen. This time I plan on wearing one of my work out tanks with big loose arm holes and bringing this nice blanket scarf I just recently purchased in case I get cold. Its just like wearing a blanket, I got mine on Amazon for $25. I love it and wear it all the time.

Shoes – you will not be able to tie your shoes, you can have some one else get them on for you and tie them, but this time I will just wear a pair of slip on indoor/outdoor slippers I have for tooling about the yard.

I don’t bring my purse or any thing important. I give my husband my id and insurance card to hold. Last time I didn’t even bring my phone. This time I think I will, but only because I want to up date all of you on the procedure and want to take pictures. Speaking of which, I plan on posting here, but if your going to get this procedure done there are quiet a few Youtube videos up of people who have had it done.

Once you are home –

You are going to want to take it easy. I created a deep clean list for the house for the week prior so its all clean and pretty when I get home. I am the kind of person who, if there is a mess tends to want to get up and clean it. So, doing this in advance will help me relax once I get home.

On that note, I am pre making some food for the freezer. I tend to cook for every one here since I enjoy it so much, and with one hand its not going to be an easy task, between every one pitching in and the premade meals it will be much easier to get through these 6 weeks of recovery and be able to eat healthy home made cooking instead of eating out.

Showers – I went to Walgreens and purchased a cast cover that just pulls on to keep my cast clean and dry when I shower. You still can’t really shower like you could with two arms, but it makes things much easier. Last time I toyed with wrapping it in saran, or tying a garbage bag around it, but those tend to be sloppy and hard to handle, and I ended up getting the cover at the very end instead of messing with a DIY project every time I wanted to shower – its worth it. Here is another option on Amazon.

Hair- OK, so if you know me, you know I used to work in  the hair industry, and I like to do my hair every day. I decided this time around to prebook appointments with my hairdresser to get my hair washed and styled at least every week. My normal routine is wash dry and iron, and I will not be doing that on my own for the 6 weeks of recovery.  If you are a wash and go person, and if you can do your hair with one hand, then no need, for me this is a spurge, but I think it will make me feel better.

Lots of sweats and easy clothes – I cleaned out my closet yesterday – part of my deep clean to get the house ready for after surgery and took the time to pull out easy clothes to wear while in the cast. Getting every thing together before hand will really help.

 

That is what I have doen so far, I will make sure to update after my surgery and during the recover process. If you have any thing to add to my prep list I would love to hear it.

♥Pamela

 

 

The Ahimsa Life Group Cleanse is happening March 1st!

 

Ever think about doing a cleanse and just didn’t know where to start?

Sign up for my 7 day cleanse at cleansewithpam.com!

I can guide you through a safe and effective detox program where you not only loose some weight, but you will feel rejuvenated and energized!

I believe its important to cleanse our bodies from time to time.

When is the right time to cleanse?

When you need a jump start for weight loss, when you are feeling sluggish or when your body just doesn’t seem right.

However a lot of the detoxes and cleanses on the market can be intense. In this cleanse you will never feel hungry and will eat delicious whole foods. You will get rid of any thing processed, and feel what its like to thrive on delicious plant based foods.

I will support you the entire way with tips, meal plans, recipes, and all the motivation you need to make this one week the start of a new healthy life.

3-DManualCoverCLEANSE

Read more at cleansewithpam.com or sign up now!

The cleanse starts March 1st sign up now for the early bird discount price of $97

Price after Feburary 19th –  $147

 

What to sign up or get more information?

Visit cleansewithpam.com

questions? Contact me below

 

Is working with a Health Coach Right for You?

One thing you can always count on is that a health coach will be there to help set goals, action steps and to hold you accountable.  Health Coaches are invaluable to their clients, as well as to doctors and any of their partners. From helping transition from the Standard American diet to a new healthier way of eating, to helping reach your weight loss goals, working with a Health Coach, like me 🙂 will make the process so much easier.

Thinking about working with a health coach but your just not sure if it’s right for you? Here are some reasons why you might need a Health Coach.

Is working with a Health Coach Right for You?

  • It’s cheaper to be proactive than to pay for a triple by-pass. With insurance situations, it’s especially true now more than ever.
  • Has weight crept up on you without you realizing where it came from?  A health coach can help you break it down into manageable lifestyle changes that won’t throw you for a loop.
  • Are you feeling worn out and a little depressed?
  • Everyone else is eating better than you and you just want what is easy, like fast food.
  • Are you always getting sick, like you have no immune system working for you?
  • Would you like to set a better example for your family?
  • Do you have trouble sticking with a fitness plan?
  • Would you like to do a kitchen makeover and just start fresh?
  • You are stressed out with no realistic way to eliminate the causes.
  • You wish just once someone would listen to you and think about how you feel.
  • Do you have orders from your doctor that are confusing or hard to follow?

Health coaches can help with anything from introducing you to essential oils for natural remedies, to helping you to visualize and relax, to helping you to set goals, stick with them and then celebrate your wins with you!

Start the year out Right!  With a Health Coach.

Contact me for more information on how I can help you start 2018 off right!

 

How to maintain a Vegan Diet while traveling

 

How to maintain a Vegan diet while traveling

If you’re traveling on a plane, in a car or even  just down the block it does not always seem like it will be easy to maintain a Vegan diet. I traveled extensivly for work, from one coast to the other, and some times it can be a challenge. But I am here to tell you Eating healthy food while traveling from location to location can be easy peasy with a little planning. Whether you are a road warrior as I was or just taking a family trip, it can be done! Here some of my tips to maintain a Vegan diet while on the road.

1. Eat the Sides

The side dishes are often the most flavorful and best part of the menu, and that’s where you will find the complex carbs and vegetables will power you through your day. Vegetables, sweet potatoes and beans are often available separately, but together they make a powerful, healthy meal. During the time I spent out n the road for work I had to attend numerous team meetings at Steakhouses, some where I wouldn’t normally choose to go. But now I love putting together a great meal from the sides at a steakhouse. Seriously, Some of my healthiest dinners have been at a steakhouse, believe it or not, they normally put the most thought into the sides and have some of the freshest vegetables. It was pretty normal for me to hear “what are you having over there, or can I have some of that? from my Carnivorous co workers.

2. Start with a healthy choice.

It’s easier to find something healthy at an Asian restaurant or a Middle Eastern Restaurant than a dedicated burger stand or a hoagie shop. Set yourself up for success by choosing a diner that has at least a few good options on the menu, so you aren’t required to make your waitress write a short story in order to take your order. Indian Restaurants are my favorite on the road, you can easily find a few with buffets in every city, and the options are endless.

3. Make the Best Choice.

Choose wine and peanuts on the plane instead of a diet Coke and cookies. Grab a veggie burger at Burger King or veggie sub from Subway, if these are your only options work with what you have. My best suggestion is find a Whole foods. You can get tons of ready made meals, fruits vegetables  and snacks that you can eat in the dining area or take with you on the go.

Eating Out

Choose the right foods at these restaurants:

Asian: Miso soup: soy reduces risk of certain cancers and is linked to reduced risk of heart disease. Choose brown rice and vegetables in a spicy brown sauce will not only fill you up, but is a low-inflammatory food.

Italian: Whole grain pasta and marinara sauce with a generous side salad topped with a little olive oil-based Italian dressing. I mean even your meat eating friends would love this meal.

Steakhouse: Top a baked potato with mushrooms and veggies and enjoy a side of asparagus or carrots. Usually the wine lists are amazing at steak houses, so don’t miss your chance to indulge!

Breakfast: Eat oatmeal with non-dairy milk or water, dried fruit (excellent for bone health) and nuts (protect against heart disease and some cancers). Just a little brown sugar on top makes it perfectly delicious. Choose whole grain bread with peanut butter and jam if the oatmeal isn’t available.

Coffee House: Endless varieties of teas and coffee with non-dairy milk are available. Many coffee houses have oatmeal too.

Gas Stations: Choose nuts and fruit.

 

Cheat the System: Bring a favorite shake to enjoy when you’re on the go, so that food choices don’t take up too much of your time. Traveling with a blender or bullet makes fruit smoothies easy to prepare anywhere there’s a grocery store and a electrical outlet.

What Tea to drink for any ailment

It’s no secret I love a good cup of tea. I love buying little tea cups and cuddling up with a good book. My tea cabinet is overflowing with tons of little delicious bags and loose tea. But more recently I have been using tea for more then just a little relaxing.

Peppermint Tea is one of my favorite teas to drink, not only is it delicious, but it really helps the bloating and uneasy feeling I get in my stomach so often from IBD. Peppermint tea also promotes healthy digestion.

On that note, Ginger Teas are excellent when you are feeling nauseous, or any tummy upset. Also great for motion sickness!

Feeling that yearly cold coming on? Sip Elder Flower Tea. It can reduce nasal congestion especially when taken before bed. It can cut the duration of a cold when taken at first symptoms. Drink hot, 3-4 times a day.

Trying to get healthy or loose weight? Green Tea with help rev up that metabolism and is loaded with antioxidants! Green Tea is one of the healthiest beverages on the planet, it has even been proven to boost brain function.

Camomile Tea is another winner – sip before bed to fight off those sleepless nights. Other benefits include reducing muscle spasms, period pain, and stress reduction. Camomile tea also gives you a powerful boost with its anti aging properties.

Do you have any favorite Teas?

 

Why you need a Hot Water Bottle

Once you start using a hot water bottle you won’t believe how you ever got along with out it!

A hot water bottle is one of the most useful, all purpose health care products you will ever use. It is designed to apply comfortable soothing heat therapy easily and conveniently to any part of the body.

Fill with hot water from the sink, a hot water bottle will stay warm for about 2 hours.

Uses –

  • Relax muscles
  • Or use for the entire body
  • Gives comfort
  • Delivers a deep state of relaxation
  •  Try using it on
  • Feet for warmth
  • Back for any kind of strain
  • Lower abdomen for cramps
  • Abdomen for any kind of digestion and relaxation

Note- I have gone through Diverticulitis and now an IBD with my Hot water bottle, it has gotten me through many flares.

 

Additional uses –

  •  Combats illnesses by being a warm and soothing companion through the flu, colds, chills, and aches.
  • Eases menstrual cramps
  • As a bed warmer on cold winter nights
  • To ease arthritic pain, moist heat is amazing for those aches and pains, especially for hands
  • To calm children, the warm cuddly hot water bottle gives them a secure feeling
  • As a traveling companion – take it with you on trips and hotel rooms will feel like home
  • To calm your pet – place under a blanket for a new puppy, it helps them feel warm and secure in new surroundings

Note – not intended for use on full grown Jack Russel Terriers, they love it and you will be getting your self a new Hot Water bottle 🙂

  • To encourage restful sleep – after a high stress day lie down with a hot water bottle on your stomach, close your eyes and breath deeply. Feel the bottle rise and fall. Its like a mediation and very relaxing!

Water – how much should you be drinking?

Your body is made up of between 60-75% water. It’s no surprise that how much water you drink effects your health. Too little water could cause dehydration, headaches and fatigue.

But how much should you drink?

On average Men should drink about 3 liters (13 cups) and Woman should drink 2.2 liters (9 cups) of water each day.

Lifestyle and other factors need to be taken into consideration. For example, the hydration in fruits and vegetables will increase your intake, while a regular jog outside in the heat will decrease your hydration making you need to increase your water intake.

When should you increase your water?

  • Hot humid temperatures
  • High altitude – specifically when flying
  • High exercise levels
  • When your sick especially when you are running a fever have diarrhea and are vomiting
  • infections of the urinary tract or bladder
  • When you are pregnant or are breast feeding
  • and when you are drinking alcohol

 

What is the best type of water?

There are so many water options! Right now in my very own kitchen I can get water through multiple sources. Let me go over a few

Tap water – the most available source, but not always the best choice. While some cities have great water purification systems other do  not. Research your cities Consumer Confidence Report to see if you need an at home filtration system.

Water Filters – can help remove contaminants from regular tap water. Easily available to purchase at most stores. Its important that you have looked into what is in your tap water so you can choose the best filter to remove it.

Distillation – Basically boiling water to remove impurities. Cheap and easy.

Bottled water – again widely available, however there are concerns about chemicals from the plastic bottles leaching into the water its holding as well as the effects of the increasing amount of plastic on the environment

Water Ionizers – raise the PH of water, if you are drinking this water make sure you are testing your PH for best results.

 

8 Things I do first thing in the morning

If you are familiar with The Ahimsa Life you know I am all about keeping Healthy, keeping productive and keeping things fun!

What you may not know is none of this comes natural to me. I can sit with my coffee way too long in the morning, spend much to much time playing with my dogs and reading. Over the years I have developed routines that work to keep me on track and on top of every thing, which is very important if your goal like me, is to be a work at home entrepreneur. Today I thought I would bring you in to my morning routine.

FIRST THINGS FIRST

1. Drink WATER. On my list of first things first in the morning, water is a must.  Water should be the first thing you drink in the morning, then you can drink your much-needed cup of coffee. Water first thing in the morning helps wake your digestive system up and get everything going softly, not in the kick the door open way coffee does. I usually get up and turn the kettle on while I let my little pooches outside. I make a cup of warm lemon water and join them outside. It is one of the my favorite times of the day. Sipping on my warm lemon water watching my puppies run around is the best way to get centered and start my day in a happy way.

1. Start one load of laundry. But have a plan to get it into the dryer, set a timer in your kitchen or make a routine of changing it after your shower, whatever you need to do. Just get it done.

3. Empty the dishwasher. It’s like a clean slate. I start my dishwasher and take out my garbage every night before I go to bed. Every night. When I first started working for myself I was surprised how much of my day I spent doing cleaning around the house. Now I make sure I do these things on schedule to free up more time during the day to create. By emptying the dish washer first thing in the morning you will be able to put anything you dirty all day directly in, bypassing the sink and keeping your home tidy and you on track. For me it’s easy to get distracted by a messy house. Keeping it neat helps me stay in my office working.

4. Take a peak at your planner for the week. knowing what you have going on all week makes it easier to stay on track. I use my planner religiously. Love writing things down and crossing them off my list. Some times by looking over my planner I am able to squeeze a few things that were planned later in the week and group them together, my goal is always to have a free Friday, it does not always work, but if I can I try and get everything done M-Th, leaving my Friday for spending time with my family, a much needed writing day, or getting some of the projects done that I have not been able to knock off my list.

5. Know what you are having for dinner. Meal planning is very important to me. If you follow this blog you know I have an IBD, and food really is the best medicine. Planning ahead is also important to stick to your budget and maintaining a lower stress level at home. When you know what you’re having for dinner in the morning, you can prep the ingredients early in the day and won’t be standing in front of the pantry and fridge while your family is begging for food.

6.Get dressed. This sounds silly, I know.  But remember I work from home, it would be pretty easy to write all day in my pajamas. It’s amazing the difference in what I get done when I am dressed and ready to tackle the day as opposed to the days when the opposite is true. If I am going to the gym or the yoga studio that day I get dressed for that. Just being dressed and ready for the day makes me feel so much  more motivated.

7. Brain dump. I had never heard of a brain dump before a few years ago. One of my friends gave me a planner that had these cute little areas specifically for brain dumps and they have changed my life. Here is how you do it. Take out a piece of paper (or find a space in your planner or that adorable notebook you have been dying to use) and write a list, write everything that you know you need to get done, future events, things that you want to do, every thought that comes to mind, write it down. You don’t have to write it in any kind of order, just write down everything. It’s amazing how much brain capacity we take up just trying to remember everything. Once it’s written down, you can visualize what needs to happen and make your to-do list.

8. After your brain dump, write your to-do list for the day. After you write it down, prioritize those items. What absolutely has to happen? What could be done tomorrow if things happen and toss you off course? I take those items and distribute them on different days in my planner. In my planner I also have an ongoing list of things I can tackle in any free time that I have been able to make happen that week.

And that’s it! What are the things you do first thing in the morning to start your day off right?

Juice of the Week – Green Energy Drink

 

Everyone needs a boost of energy sometimes, and this little nutrition packed baby will give you all the boost you need to handle any thing life throws your way.

Spinach and Honeydew are full of vitamin C which helps you absorb all the good iron from the Spinach. This juice is easy to make and tastes amazing, I guarantee it will become one of your favorites you make time and time again.

 

Green Energy Drink

4 cups Spinach

2 Kiwis

2 cups Honeydew cubed

1 cup green grapes

 

Blend or run through your juicer, that’s it! SO easy!!

 

Juice of the Week – Ginger tummy tamer

This recipe is easy to whip up on those days when you are not feeling your best.

Pineapple is loaded with amazing enzymes that help with inflammation, they also help boost digestion.

Vitamins A, C, E and K as some of the nutrients found in papaya. The fruit is also a rich source of folate, potassium, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids and dietary fiber.

Ginger- we are all familiar with mom bringing us a ginger ale when we were sick, but whole Ginger is much better for you. Ginger reduces inflammation in a similar way to non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin and ibuprofen. It also can help with motion sickness and morning sickness.

Over the years of battling my IBD I have tried many things. Here is my favorite safe nutritious way to clam any upset stomach.

Ginger Tummy Tamer

3 cups pineapple cut into cubes

2 cups Papaya cut into cubes

2 inch piece of Ginger

 

Make sure you wash all your ingredients prior to prepping them for this recipe. Toss them in your blender till smooth and enjoy!

Tip – I like to freeze a baggie full of the ingredients so its easy to pull out and blend when I need it, you can thaw it out as much or as little as you like, blending frozen make a great slushy texture.