Beware Your Blood


(Sarah Hague) #1

I am a seething mass of fury. Why? Because I follow the blah blah boring ‘Moderation In All Things’ mantra and it’s NOT WORKING! How can it not work? How DARE IT!



Yesterday I finally got round to having a blood test. It’s taken about a year for me to get off my arse. Perhaps that wasn’t terribly moderately efficient, but well, you know, it’s not like it was urgent, like my life depended on it (to my knowledge, but I didn’t exactly have an arrow through my head…), like I was going to dissolve into a spineless pool of sugary water if I didn’t have one immediately. And guess what? Now I wish I HADN’T BOTHERED!



I never get drunk, don’t even drink every day, have sensible drink-driving quantities when I do and yet my blood levels that show whatever it is that indicate alcohol is high. HIGH! How can it be high? I can make a friggin’ bottle last a week! I tell you, it’s NOT FAIR! Am I going to take any notice? Actually, no, I don’t think I will because life is all about living and having some MODERATE fun and no blood test is going to deny me that! What’s more, a glass a day helps keep Alzheimer’s away, so it can get stuffed.



The other totally unjust news was that my cholesterol is high. My TWDB reckons I eat too much meat (he’s a closet vegetarian) but I have two strapping boys who don’t eat cheese and turn their noses up at a vast array of vegetables. What is particularly galling is that, with the boys away, I’ve eaten very little meat this week as a sop to my TWDB and the levels are STILL HIGH! It’s so annoying.



Being sensible about things though (yawn), I thought I’d nip onto Amazon.fr and check out vegetarian cookery books. I thought it best to look at French ones because they will be adapted for the French market and what’s easily available. There’s no point reading about stuff that’s on the shelves in Sainsbury’s or Waitrose if all I’ve got to hand is Carrouf and Intermarche. I’m also not financially able to do all my shopping in specialist stores. If I were, I’d be at the local butcher’s buying decent MEAT!



As an extra challenge, the favoured recipe book should be one that doesn’t contain too many cooked vegetables, and no cheese or the boys will pooh-pooh what’s on their plates and go and stuff a Nutella sarnie instead. And you thought Hercules had it bad!



A quick Google on ‘vegetarian classics’ results in a website called theveggietable.com. On their list of classic dishes are the following: cabbage rolls, aubergine parmigiana, lasagna florentine, macaroni cheese, portobello mushroom sandwich, roasted veggie sandwich, spanakopita, tostadas, and so on. None of these will be eaten by my boys.



They will both eat salad (but not chicory), peas, corn, broccoli, French beans, onions, and, um, tomatoes. One will eat Brussel sprouts, parsnips and bean-shoots, the other won’t. Of course I often take no notice of their faddy ways, but it just means they pick out all the bits they like and leave the rest. Cooking for them is an extremely frustrating business, and likely to be more so if we all have to eat less meat as there’s no way I’m cooking it and not eating it!



Of course, there’s no book on earth that can provide me with interesting and varied recipes based on the basic ingredients that my boys will accept so I’m thinking about what foods lower cholesterol instead. Living by the Mediterranean, I follow a reasonably good Mediterranean diet - much good it’s done me - with lots of olive oil, garlic, and I try to buy mostly seasonal veggies and fruit. According to the website foodsthatlowercholesterol.org I could also be drinking cranberry and grape juice which I did, in fact, until I got bored with it.



It also suggests eating things like oats and whole grains, walnuts, apples, avocado (all of which I do), and oily fish which of course one boy likes, the other hates.



So, I do have a healthy diet except that most evening meals contain some meat, but it seems it’s not enough, and I have to do more. Always more more more boring stuff, and no wine. What sort of a life is that, eh? Not one for me, that’s for sure!



What’s in your blood?!


(Sarah Hague) #2

Yeah, I had 2 glasses of wine tonight, exceptionally on a week day and enjoyed EVERY LAST DROP!

Very interesting, Fiona - thank you for the link. I will just carry on as usual I think. I’m certainly not going to take any drugs!


(David Cox 2) #3

marmiton.com is a good french cooking site, with a sister site in English (lets cook french, link on the bottom right) that appears to be down at the moment.


(Catharine Higginson) #4

Hear hear! A little bit of what you fancy and all that…