Adina Mayo

Fighting back against chronic pain with a simple, creative, & healthy lifestyle. Inspiring others to become warriors.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Since #leohusband has been traveling all the freaking time, I really have not been into cooking.

Actually, I haven’t been into anything lately.

I guess you can say the strain of him being gone for the last four months is really starting to take its toll. It’s obvious I’m missing my other half because things just don’t seem to be fun without him. I’m definitely on cruise control here.

Well, at least he’s back for a little bit and it seems that I have rediscovered my desire to cook again. It helps that there’s an appreciative audience.
So this morning I dug through my pantry and got out the Bob’s Red Mill Paleo Pancake Mix I brought from Thrive Market a while back.

The steps to make this are very simple and took less than 5 minutes. I did substitute one item because I am a fan of adding avocado oil to pre-prepared mixes than coconut oil. I find that melted coconut oil solidifies as soon as it comes into contact with eggs from the fridge, which is not good for cooking.

Other than the coconut oil I kept the recipe the same. I decided not to do anything fancy this go around just so I could try out the plain pancakes without any additives like dried fruit or nuts.
They mixed up well, the batter was slightly runny and they poured fantastically. I got about six medium-sized pancakes per the recipe.

I had my griddle on 350 with a light spray of olive oil on the plates.

The only drawback in the cooking process is they do not bubble in the traditional way that most pancakes do. When it came time to flip them, I watched for when the tops turned from a glossy sheen to a matte. That's when I flipped them. At that stage, they were golden brown so my timing seemed to be correct. Good thing since there was no bubbling.
I didn't time the second side, but it was long enough for me to peel a peach and slice it up. So maybe three minutes???

I served the peach on the side with a tablespoon of organic maple syrup (also courtesy of Thrive Market). I wanted them on the side because I felt it was important to try the pancake plain.

I mean plain, noting on it. No Ghee, no honey, no syrup, no almond butter...nothing.

Even plain they had a good flavor. They weren't dry. Semi-fluffy but good none-the-less. They were even better with the peaches in syrup.

All in all a great go-to mix when you don't feel like making your own or you are short on time for breakfast. The only complaint I had overall is that there is coconut sugar in the mix which I honestly feel is unnecessary. Come on people, we're going to add maple syrup anyway, why the add?


Bob’s Red Mill Paleo Pancake Mix Review
Taste: ★★★★☆
Chronic Pain Ease: ★★★★★

I highly recommend this for my chronic pain and illness community. It was so easy to make and required very little standing time and effort. Plus, since it was only me for breakfast, I have leftovers so tomorrow's breakfast is taken care of.

Friday, August 31, 2018

I love smoothie bowls. There are simply my favorite thing to eat when I just don't know what to eat. I also believe that they are not exclusive to breakfast. Have one for lunch or dinner. It's the better alternative to the "I'm just going to have a bowl of cereal for dinner" syndrome.

I do that a lot especially when #leohusband is out of town. Cooking for two is cool. Cooking for one is just not worth the effort sometimes.

Enter the smoothie bowl.

Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie

You can do this in a glass or bowl. I personally like the bowl because I add toppers like almonds because unless I'm chewing my body does not recognize that I've eaten.

This is Whole 30 and Paleo. It's also quick to make which is a bonus for my chronic pain warriors. If you want it vegan-friendly omit the bee pollen. Bee pollen is not considered safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women. Bee pollen also can cause a serious allergic reaction in some humans who ingest it.

1 pear
1/2 fennel bulb
1 thin slice of fresh ginger, lengthwise
1 cup of packed down spinach
1/2 cucumber, peeled
1/2 c of unsweetened coconut water
2 dates chopped
1 T chia seeds
1/2 avocado
Big handful of ice

If drinking as a smoothie in a glass - 2T of nut butter or hemp seeds
If eating as a smoothie bowl - a handful of chopped nuts or seeds of choice

1 T of bee pollen (if you have built up your tolerance) if not 1/8 t until you build up a tolerance over the next several weeks and months, note any reactions you may have - preferably in your bullet journal.

Make it!
Wash all produce.

Cut the pear in quarters and dispose of the core.

Cut the cucumber in half and peel the cucumber.

Remove the pits from the dates and chop finely.

Cut the avocado into quarters and add 1 quarter.

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a glass or bowl (top with chopped nuts if doing a smoothie bowl).

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

In yoga, the position called Viparita Karani, commonly known as the "legs up the wall" pose is so beneficial. I wrote about getting into this pose here.

This time I would like to get into the benefits.

Viparita Karani is actually quite the therapeutic pose. Since learning about my Adrenal Fatigue I upped my time in this pose from my usual 5 minutes to 15 minutes.

I combine this pose with 5 minutes of 4-7-8 breathing and my daily 10-minute Headspace meditation.

In order to receive the full therapeutic benefits of this pose, you really should also focus on deep breathing while in the pose.
Viparita Karani for 15 minutes a Day

1. Circulation

Your body has to work really hard to pump all the blood from your legs back to your heart. In legs up the wall, your legs are higher than your heart so it allows gravity to help bring the blood flow back to your heart. The increased circulation decreases inflammation as well as swelling in the feet and legs.

4. Relieves Muscle Tension

Raising your legs is one of the best ways to get rid of tension in your legs, feet, hips, and lower back. It gently stretches the hamstrings which are usually tight, especially if you have been sitting all day.

2. Decreases Stress and Anxiety

You activate the parasympathetic nervous system and oxygenate your brain. When the muscle tension or pain eases and your deep breathing regulates and calms, you will find your stress decreases, and your body will have the chance to heal and repair.

3. Improves the Immune System

When your feet are in the vertical position the lymphatic system is stimulated. The movement of lymph removes the toxins in our body.

5. Improves Digestion

Putting your legs up is an exercise known as "active inversion." Changing your position, and raising your legs above your head helps to loosen fluids and move your bowels. The increased blood flow also helps absorb more nutrients from your food in the long run.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

I was cruising the web yesterday because I was wanting to answer the age old question...could I set my coffee maker up to brew tea in the morning. Yes. I am ready for the switch to tea.

I am perfectly capable of turning on my electric kettle and pouring my cup of tea, but frankly, I was wanting that smell of the brew and also to set the timer on my coffee maker so it would be ready at 6:30 when Fluffy Alarm Clock wakes up.

I want my pre-breakfast treat immediately so to speak.

However, this post is not about making tea in a coffee maker, well sort of.

So can you make tea in a coffee maker? Yes.
What shocked me was the number of people who made iced tea in the coffee maker, so they didn't have to use their iced tea maker.

So I nearly died of laughter.


I remember my amazing mother making fun of all the people who owned an iced tea maker growing up as she taught me to make iced tea.

I'm going to say this.

Maybe those people who had parents and grandparents were A. not southern and B. must have not been affected by The Great Depression the way other people's parents or grandparents were. Maybe they were just never taught to make iced tea and they think they need a machine?

Most things we've learned to make are usually passed down through the generations...

The article mentioned that you could boil a pot of water for iced tea but then you are having to clean more dishes.


People iced tea is not rocket science.

How to Make Iced Tea without an Iced Tea Maker
First, you need a pitcher. My mom has this amazing depression glass one that has been handed down through our family. Until I find one in an antique store, I use just a regular gallon sized pitcher.

4 - 6 Black Tea bags of your choice depending on how strong you like your tea. I usually go for 4.
1/4 cup of raw unfiltered honey (I do my sweet tea paleo style)

Tea Kettle or Electric Tea Kettle
Gallon Sized Pitcher
Clothespin or Clip
Make your iced tea:

1. Fill your kettle to the max or live on the edge and go a bit past the max line
2. Turn your kettle on
3. Clip the tea bags to the side of your pitcher
4. Drop in your honey to the bottom
5. Pour in the boiling water to below the tea bag line
6. Stir the honey in with the boiling water
7. Pour in the rest of the water - usually to the 2L line for me
8. Let the tea steep for 1 - 2 hours
9. Top off the tea with cold water until it reaches the 3L line.


Iced Tea.

One dish used.

Store in the refrigerator it will keep for 1 week if it stays around that long.

Monday, August 27, 2018

I've always been a lover of Vitamin C. A long time ago in a lifetime far away I was an art teacher. Somewhere in the middle of my teaching career, I was doing my open house duties, meeting all the parents of my high schoolers, and I was sick.

I always got sick around the second week of school and I think I hosted open house with a terrible sore throat and congested more often than not.

One mom came up to me after my introduction and what your kid is going to learn in art this year, to tell me that she was an ER nurse and that if I feel a cold coming know, the first tickle in your throat, to take a Vitamin C every hour and drink a gallon of water that day.

I've since added on a zinc lozenge to this routine, and let me tell you it works. It kicks the common cold in the ass and prevents my tendency to get a sinus infection, that gets treated but then turns into bronchitis.

However, I will say that if it is bacteria - like strep - this will not keep you from getting sick because bacterial infections need antibiotics, but viruses, on the other hand, it works like a champ.

And that is what we usually get right? Viruses?

However, what if Vitamin C did so much more?

Vitamin C The Superhero Supplement

If you have chronic pain, illness, or adrenal fatigue, Vitamin C is your powerhouse. It is the foundation you should be building your new health routine on.

Most people think that the best way to get their Vitamin C is through oranges or orange juice.

This is actually the least effective way to get Vitamin C. By the time ripened oranges get to your grocery store most of the bioflavonoids that give you the vitamins are depleted, and the part we eat - the delicious fruit part, has the least nutrients.

The best part to eat for actual nutrients is the rind and who the hell wants to eat that?

Most juicing processes do not use the rind either and if it does use it, then you are probably exposing your body to a host of chemicals that have been sprayed on the orange in the growing process.

So stop saying you are getting your Vitamin C from oranges and orange juice because you actually aren't.

You can get relatively good amounts of Vitamin C from dark leafy greens like Kale or sprouts, but if you have a chronic illness, pain, disease, or a highly stressful and erratic lifestyle, you need to take a supplement.

I'm taking about 3,000 U of Vitamin C a day. This is a good amount for me especially since I do suffer from several illnesses, take multiple medications, and I have adrenal fatigue. The max amount for an adult over 19 years of age is 2,000 units a day.

When you do take more than 2,000 units it should only be for a short time period. For instance, recovering from surgery, a night of zero sleep, heading off a cold, and other stressful situations like moving or grief.

When you get ready to back down to your normal dose decrease by 500 units a day. You can have an adverse reaction if you go back to your normal dose overnight.

Also, check to see where your supplement is getting its ascorbic acid. Some companies use ascorbic acid from corn products, which can be counterintuitive if you are avoiding corn.

Friday, August 24, 2018

BBQ grills are leaving the stores and so is the patio furniture and bug spray.

While is starting to cool off in parts of the US, it is hotter than Hades in Texas.

It's blazing hot, so we don't spend much time outside let alone grilling over a hot flame. Here we love to grill in the fall and spring. Heck, we've even grilled out in February.

For Valentines, #leohusband went to our local H-E-B butcher and asked him for the best steak they had. He came back with a 42oz tomahawk steak.

Once home #leohusband swallowed his manly pride and ask me to help him grill it.

Check out my Paleo and Whole30 Steak Marinade post for my seasoning.
If I'm doing super strict Whole30 I will finish it with lemon juice but it was a treat day so we used Wostershire sauce. Since the steak was so thick, 2 and a half inches, we came back and did another pass of the dry rub.

Easy Charcoal Grilling Guide

Grilling is easy and I really want more women to embrace it, but as I was talking to a friend, they insisted that their husband grilling is sometimes the only break they get in the kitchen.

I get it.

However, let's say your significant other is out of town for some reason and you just have this hankering for steak.

Well, here you go...

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Treat yo self Thursday coming at ya with Curried Mixed Nuts, Paleo and Whole30 Compliant!

This is one of my all time favorite treats. It's spicy and salty which are two favorite combinations. It's Paleo and Whole30, which while I'm on those I get really tired of just plain, old, and boring mixed nuts.
Feel free to alter the spice level through minimizing the cayenne pepper. If you like it hot - add more, not so hot add less. I would say my recipe is a good medium level hotness.

Preheat your oven to 250
Cover a large baking sheet with non-stick foil or parchment.
2 egg whites beaten until frothy and foamy
1 large tub or can of plain, unsalted, and unroasted nuts
2 T Cumin
2 T Curry
1 t Cardamom
1/2 t Cinnamon
1 and 1/4 t Cayenne
2 and 1/2 t Garlic Salt
Dump the nuts into a large bowl. In a small bowl, stir all the spices together until evenly mixed. In another small bowl, whisk the egg whites until frothy and foamy.

Coat the nuts with the egg whites and stir well. Pour half the spices over the nuts and stir well to incorporate. Pour the rest of the spices over the nuts, stir again and dump onto the baking sheet. Spread evenly over the sheet.

Bake for 45 minutes. Let cool for 1 hour. Break the clusters apart and store in an airtight container.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

It's August and so far I've had horrible pain flares once a week for 6 weeks now. I actually have been doing pretty great on my healthy eating protocol and keeping up with my yoga and physical therapy. I'm taking all my supplements, aside from Fluffy Alarm Clock almost died two weeks ago, I've been doing all the things I need to do to not be in pain.

So what gives?

This is why I keep a bullet journal and why it's so damn important if you have a chronic condition to keep one.

Does Heat Make Pain Worse?


I looked at my bullet journal from July and August 2017 and guess what? Huge Pain Flares.

One would infere or assume (hope I don't make an ass out of you and me) from my data collected in my bullet journals that as the summer heat increases, so does my pain, exponentually.

Here is this August so far.

Towards the end of July as the heat increased in Texas so did my pain.
Apparently, July - August will probably be my worst months every year. I can't wait for next year's (that sounds weird since we're talking about my pain levels) bullet journal as I will have even more data to have on hand.

If you are shy about getting started in a bullet journal or think you need a ton of supplies check out these posts, here and here.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

As I've mentioned here and here, I've given up coffee before.

Why am I giving up such delicious nectar from the gods?

Well, my thirty day hormone test results came in and I have severe adrenal fatigue. Which is good because in August of 2017 I had Adrenal Failure. My cortisol was at zero, meaning my adrenal glands were completely depleted.

Adrenal Failure if not given proper medical attention can lead to organ other words, it can kill you.

So most of 2017 and 2018 has been to get out of Adrenal Failure, which I have achieved, but I still have a long way to go because I'm now in severe adrenal fatigue.

Like all things in my life I immediately started researching.

This led me to two different paths.

I already did yoga and meditation which are key in dealing with adrenal fatigue. I knew I was going to treat this with diet changes because my mantra is food is medicine, but which diet?

The so-called adrenal fatigue diet, which has a lot of criticism based on some of the food recommendations or the anti-inflammatory diet which doesn't address key issues of adrenal fatigue?

Either way, both diets suggest giving up coffee because elevated cortisol is indicative of inflammation and adrenal fatigue.

How to Give Up Coffee

I don't want to give up coffee. Talking with my #breadwinnerbff this morning we discussed that the ritual of coffee, the smell, and the richness. You just don't get that richness from tea. You just don't.

Therefore after my adrenals heal, I will probably go back to coffee. Maybe.
When I gave up coffee in my 20's it was easy, I just switched to green tea and that was it. Easy peasy.

In my late 30's (I'm a year and a half away from 40) it's damn near impossible. I'm treating giving up coffee like a Whole30. I'm planning it out and stepping myself down slowly.

1. Pick a Good Date to Start

Just like a Whole30, where they advise you to pick a time when you are not traveling or have a special event - like a birthday or wedding where you would want to eat cake - I started my journey on August 15. I don't have anything special planned for the next month. I'm not going on any trips. I don't have any commitments beyond physical therapy and yoga.

2. Step Down Slowly

There have to be thousand of caffeine charts out there that show you the caffeine content of each drink, I know because I spent a good hour looking at them.

In summation of my research, if you drink a Starbucks Tall Coffee, you may have a problem. It has the most caffeine out of any coffee product on the market weighing in at an average of 260-300 mg per 12 oz cup. Comparatively, Dunkin Donuts (in store) has an average of 150-200 mg per 12 oz cup.

Home brewed espresso at 1.5 oz has 50-80.

Decaf coffee actually has 4-8 mg per cup.

Why ranges? Well, it really depends on how much coffee you use. I like weak coffee, according to #leohusband, so I do 1 Tablespoon for 16oz. This is because I drink it black. Most people who add cream to their coffee like it much stronger so they still have the coffee taste. #leohusband's family would do 2 Tablespoons to my 1 Tablespoon, or 1 Tablespoon for every 8 oz.


So obviously it would have more caffeine...

Step down the amount of coffee you are brewing, and if you are using a K-Cup, stop.

A. Heating up plastic alters your body chemistry and hormones.
B. Heating up plastic has shown to create or accelerate abnormal cell growth which leads to cancer.
C. Molds and fungus have been found in the holding water tanks.
D. K-Cups are extremely bad for the environment.
E. It's expensive.
F. K-Cups taste like s---

Need I go on.
3. Make the Switch to Tea

After stepping down the amount you are brewing, start mixing in a little decaf.

This was my first step. My scoop is 1 tsp or 5 ml of coffee grounds. So for my '4' cups of coffee that is three scoops. 2 of those scoops are regular and 1 is decaf for this week. Next week 2 scoops of decaf to 1 regular will be next week. My step down day is Saturday because I don't have die-hard commitments on the weekend so it's easier on me.

The half-life of caffeine is about 4.9 hours so at about 10 hours it's technically out of your system.

Once you are down to 2 decaf scoops and 1 regular scoop for about a week, make the switch to black tea.
4. Step down your caffeine intake to Green, White, or Herbal Teas.

You need to decide where you want your caffeine intake to be. Green tea has less caffeine than black tea, white teas have even less, and herbal teas have none. This is where I recommend you treat yo self. If you love a tea - for instance, I love, love, love Numi's Organic White Rose Tea, it feels indulgent with the rose smell and the taste is delicious.

Side note - I love the smell of coffee so I need to replace it with something equally as aromatic.

It's a little expensive but I see it as worth it to stay track on my goals. It won't be forever and if it helps me from falling off the wagon back to my coffee, I can spend a few extra dollars.

5. Make a New Ritual

I'm so happy to be receiving a teapot in my fall Fab Fit Fun Box. This is going to make the transition so much easier. I do love the ritual of making coffee, and I'm going to replace that with using a beautiful teapot. I suggest getting something that gives you joy to use or maybe you have a family heirloom that needs to be dusted off and appreciated. Marie Kondo would be proud.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Lately, I’ve been really into pickled vegetables. Did you know that you can pickle just about anything?

Yesterday, I did a quick pickle of radishes in zucchini to go with my salmon burger.

All you need to make a quick pickling solution you probably already have at home.

There are two ways to go about pickling. 

If you want to infuse herbs then you want the heat method (described below) or if you want them immediately - which I did with my meal - then thinly slice your veggies and dump them into a bowl with a mixture of 1/2 c of raw apple cider vinegar and 1-2 tsp of honey.  

Stir about every 2-3 minutes for approximately 10 minutes. 

Boom, quick pickled veggies.

For infusing herbs, and you've got time as in, overnight kind of time, check out my pickle brine below.


Variety of Herbs and Spices to Taste (dill, garlic, hot peppers, or plain)
3 t of Himalayan Salt
Apple Cider Vinegar
Raw Honey
16 oz Mason Jar

Sanitize your Mason Jar by washing the jar and lid in hot soapy water. Rinse well and dry completely. You could also wash them in the dishwasher if you have a sanitize cycle. 
Combine your choice of chopped veggie with herbs and or spices if you want in the Mason jar, leaving 1-2 inches at the top for the brine.
Heat ½ cup of filtered water over low heat until boiling, then stir in ½ cup of apple cider vinegar, salt, and a little raw honey, maybe about a tsp. 
The hot brine infuses the spices and creates that tender crunch you get with pickling. Secure the lid, and cool at room temperature before refrigerating. Let the veggies refrigerate for at least 24 hours before enjoying.

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