Chocolate Turkey Delight

So this is the kind of dessert turkey that will sweeten your Thanksgiving dinner.


Gobs and gobs of white, milk, and dark chocolate.


And they actually shaped it all like a turkey.


Sort of cute, but also sort of sugary disgusting, no?


Generally, I’m not a huge fan of eating turkey either.


Maybe when they boil it in oil, and it’s cooked through and through, it actually comes out juicy and not so bad.


But give me a nice piece of beef, and I’ll be your pal forever!


A colleague who was a veterinarian and worked inspecting meat plants overseas told me some things about the cleanliness though that made my skin crawl.


“The cleanliness outside of the U.S. is WAY DIFFERENT than here!”–and not in a good way.


Even in places that do maintain clean facilities and healthy animals, the way that “they make the sausage” sounded so unappetizing.


It made me think of all those PETA and other commercials that show the chickens and other caged birds in those crowded and filthy (and diseased) conditions…even aside from the cruelty, it’s enough to make you cringe.


He said they mash the meat until it’s like just a pink paste that gets shot into the tubes for hot dogs and things like that.


“It looks disgusting!”


Also, they put parts of the animal in that are basically leftover meats from the head and other parts of the animal that did NOT sound desirable at all. 


I’m thinking to myself…FROM THE HEAD.


Uh, no more hot dogs for me, thank you.


I think that I’ll stick with a nice steak or burger or something KOSHER and palatable.


You can have your turkey and your sausage and eat it, but not me! 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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The Yom Kippur Diet Plan

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So Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish calendar is a 25-hour day of repentance, prayer, and fasting. 


This last Yom Kippur, someone mentioned to me that some people take the idea of fasting and apply it to dieting during the year by doing a 3-day fasting. 


Uh, that sounds pretty severe and maybe even a little dangerous. 


But it got me thinking that on Yom Kippur we fast for a day and then eat a meal, so why not do that daily for dieting. 


Just subsist on one main meal a day–basically limiting intake of food to a few hours in the evening. 


This made sense to me as a moderate way that I could stay focused and disciplined without any food for about 20 hours at a time, but still give myself something to look forward to with a proper, natural dinner–almost like a natural give and take that I believe I could live with (at least for a good while). 


I thought let me give this a try!


And I did. 


First without drinking or eating. 


Then I rethought this after a few days and getting parched, and said just drink zero-calorie drinks, but no food or caloric intake during the day until the meal at the end of the day. 


And I’ve been doing this now since Yom Kippur 2 weeks ago. 


I have actually lost almost 10 pounds in that time and feel great. 


It hasn’t been hard–except for one day when the synagogue had a mega Bar Mitzvah kiddish/luncheon and I sat there and didn’t have a thing!


But otherwise, I go to work and all my activities, including working out–sometimes twice a day–and without any food.


It seems to be working. 


While previously, I stayed completely off any carbs, and still gained weight–now, I allow myself to eat everything (kosher) at dinner and am losing!


I wonder if I am on to something with this new “Yom Kippur Diet.”


I pray to Hashem that I’ve discovered something good and healthy here and am committed to seeing it through. 


(Source Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)

Party With Cookies Like It’s The End Of The Fiscal Year

 

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It’s funny, today the last business day of the fiscal year…


That means that this time of year is a lot of stress on a lot of people.


So what do they do?


Well, while a lot of people are reaching for the do-re-mi ($$$) to earn and to spend before the books close, others are reaching for the plain old (cookie) dough. 


This week for example, there was a big cookie party!


So much stress, so little time.


That seems to translate into cookie days, and carbohydrate weeks. 


This isn’t just the end of the fiscal year, but a potentially fatty, dangerous time too. 


The timing is also weird because of the juxtaposition to Yom Kippur tomorrow which is a fasting day with NO food or water for 25 hours.


Better eat some more cookies now (or not). 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Wide Load @McDonald’s

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I took this photo passing a McDonald’s. 


It just seemed so perfect.


With this SUV parked right between the McDonald’s arches.


And on the SUV are two red warning flags sticking out from the sides with a sign on top that says: 

“Wide Load” 

And in the McDonald’s window is a smiley face and a $2.99 Happy Meal special. 


With the “fast food” unhealthy eating culture that McDonald’s has so long represented, what is there really to smile about except the cheap fixings. 


If you eat at McDonald’s too much or too long then like Morgan Spurlock in the documentary “Super Size Me,” who ate nothing but McDonald’s for 30 days and gained almost 25 pounds and felt crappy…unfortunately the sign “Wide Load” may be descriptive of what can happen.   


This isn’t a dig at McDonald’s per se (there are many fast food joints and things that we know aren’t necessarily good for us)…moderation in life is really key. 


Healthy eating, exercise, mindfulness, work-life balance, and generally taking good care of yourself is not just a nice to have, but important to our well-being.


Genetics aside, it’s the “Battle of the Bulge,” and it’s a lifelong pursuit to be healthy 


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal) 

Beautiful Summer Fruit

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Wow, how beautiful an array of colorful summer fruit. 


Saw this at Balducci’s (classy store). 


Watermelon, cantalope, pineapple, and mango.


Sliced and all nicely packaged up together ready to eat.


Looks yum!


Amazing what G-d creates. 


And he bestows on man the ability to put the finishing touches. 


Thank you Oh L-rd, who gives us the delicious and beautiful fruit of the tree.

Yes, it’s an unusual blog for Tisha B’Av–maybe I’m craving the food. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

People Literally Eating Garbage

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So I saw another homeless person yesterday eating out of the garbage on the street. 


They had flipped open the top, reached in, pulled out a half-drunk cup of something awful looking, and in one shot, gulped it down. 


I was choking watching this–it was so upsetting that any human being has to live this way. 


Like so many of these poor folks living off the streets, their belly was sick and widely distended. 


And their pants were very worn, with holes, and wrapped ill-fittingly around their waist. 


They dragged a small suitcase behind them. 


When people say that things are bad in their life, perhaps we often don’t stop to think about how bad things can really get (bli ayin hara).


G-d should have mercy on his children and bless us not to know any loss, sorrow, pain, suffering, sickness or hunger.  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Losing The Weight

Superman

So when I was young, I may have aspired to be Superman.  


Now, I am a little more realistic in my dreams and understanding of my capabilities. 


Since my hips started deteriorating almost 3 years ago, and I had the 2 hip replacements, it has been challenging at times with mobility and of course, weight gain. 


But as I continue to get back to myself, some people have been particularly encouraging and inspiring to me.  


One is a terrific doctor that my wife had recommended, and she told me straight up to just lose the weight. 


She told me about JuicePlus pills–which I found a cheaper version with JuiceFestiv that are capsules for organic fruit and vegetables that energizes and also fills you up. 


She also told me simply what her principle has been, “Eat half!” 


Next, I am grateful to my friend, Jacob Elbaz, who told me how he wants me around a long time as a friend and with my family.  


He also had good advice, “Just one pound a week…how hard is that?”


Finally, I am grateful to my wife who in a most caring way is cooking the right foods now and making me lots of healthy mush–some of it even edible.


With G-d’s help, I believe that I can do it!  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)