I think I may have joined a cult...I mean club.

Ok well maybe not the kindof cult you are thinking...I bought a Vitamix. Yep that it right...that big sticker item mixer you always see folks doing demo's with at Whole Foods, Costco and the fair. Right now you are totally thinking "SUCKER!" unless of course you too are in the cult. Then you are in "the know". This whole Vitamix experience reminds me so much of the time I spent debating whether to splurge and spend that money on the KitchenAide mixer.  I was all like "That's a ridiculous price!!" and so I bought the generic versions...2-3 times. Then I finally broke down and bought it.  Life changing.  I LOVE that contraption. The Vitamix...well you would think I would have learned. 2 generic wanna be's later I now have my very own.

If you follow the fan page you know this last week I went to the allergist...finally. Since Daryl's new job came with shiny new (fantastic) health benefits I figured it was time to figure out if the real joint pain culprit was Wheat, Corn or soy. I knew it was one of them.  I knew it! I just couldn't figure out which because those three ingredients are almost always together in everything these days. I had just been opting for the "cook at home all the time" method of treatment but curiosity (and good insurance) had the best of me. While my joint pain is now sitting at a level 3...it had been at least a level 9 or 10 before I took those things out of my diet. I had still been "cheating" here or there but for the most part sticking to it.

Well the answer to my allergy questions was at least some what answered. Soy, oats and Chicken (who the heck is allergic to chicken!  grrrr it's one of my favorites)...and of course the normal allergens like mold, dust mites and DOGS!  (nope not giving up my dogs....ever.  I will just vacuum them everyday or something.) It was also suggested that I try removing dairy from my diet for a week and see if that helped as well. I was all like "DAIRY!!!! But I am a dairy addict!".  Turns out dairy is one of the biggest joint pain foods you can eat. Ugh. All this time I have refused to ever remove dairy...just dairy.  My only holdout. Look...I know I could just take an arthritis pill...some steroids and call it a day.  I am totally aware. But I have zero desire to spend the rest of my life putting a bandaid across a gaping wound.  I prefer to heal such things. Healing is were it's at. If my body is trying to tell me something I should probably listen...those magic pills come with about a million side effects of their own. Have you watched a big pharma pill commercial lately?  Those "side effects" sound worse than the actual problem for taking the magic pill in the first place :-/ No thank you.

So off I went. I am on my third day of "dairy/soy/oat/chicken" free.  I am still staying away from wheat for the most part....because I read Wheat Belly and that just kindof ruins wheat for a girl. The Vitamix was requirement to get me through this food transition. I knew the dairy free would be sticking when after the first day my joint pain was at a "0" for the first time in 2.5 years. I am dealing with some headaches from the detox part of the game but I know that will pass. I am so lucky to have a great friend, Kelly, who is a healthy living guru and has always been kind enough to answer my 1,000's of questions.  She is amazing...and kind (you guys know I am a sucker for kind people). Anyhow...she uses her Vitamix daily and is always posting amazing recipes and I would always have to sit on the "I don't have a vitamix" couch.  It was terribly pitiful. Now however I get to play along!  WOOHOO!!!

I started off yesterday making her Vegan No Butter Pecan ice cream.  Incredible. I may or may not have gone to bed last night with a tummy ache from eating to much of the rich stuff... The truth is you can probably make this in a regular mixer as well so it is worth a try even if you don't own a Vitamixer! She was kind enough to let me share it with you guys!

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Kelly's Vegan No Butter Pecan ice cream

Ingredients:

1 cup mixed unsalted roasted nuts with some extra pecans

½ cup maple syrup

1 can full fat coconut milk

1 tsp. chia seeds

1 tbsp maca powder (I didn't have any of this and it still tasted great! )

pinch sea salt

1 tsp. vanilla bean powder

Place all ingredients in a high power blender and blend until completely smooth. Place in the freezer for a few hours until frozen. Serve and enjoy!!!!

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and then I moved onto Sorbets...

Which were incredibly easy!  I want to perfect them a bit and will be sharing my favorite recipe next week. We also made veggie smoothies, caesar salad dressing, peanut/honey butter, mushroom soup (which I promptly lost the link to but I shall make it again and post soon), vanilla powder, and vanilla dairy free ice cream (followed above recipe but used honey instead of maple syrup and only a few nuts). Everyone in the house is now...officially...part of the cult...I mean club ;-) Now off to have peanut/honey butter on apples with a veggie smoothy for lunch. Oh ya baby...healthy living ain't so horrible you know!

~FYI for all you local central Virginia folks...Kelly holds classes and workshops and she has a great class coming up (you know I will be in there front and center!).  It's worth every penny!  You will never regret taking control of your own health.  Ever.

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1891583_10202742614463140_2028827787_o