gastric bypass

Baked Lemon Tilapia

I’m a FOOD addict.. but I’ve found healthier and better ways to cope with my addiction❤️ #cleaneating 

This recipe is the perfect keto dinner- quick and easy to make.. and very affordable.

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What you will need:

1 sheet pan

and ingredients

INGREDIENTS:

MCLIVINIT marinade

  • 1/4 cup salted butter, melted ** Can substitute for coconut oil and ghee)

  • 1 TBSP of olive oil

  • 3 gloves of garlic chopped finely (I like to buy the bottles of garlic puree)

  • 1 tsp of salt and pepper

  • 1 tsp of cayenne pepper

  • juice of one lemon

Veggies of choice

  • red peppers 

  • shishito peppers 

  • asparagus 

  • green beans 

Protien

  • 4 Filets of tilapia

  • (Tom thumb (Texas ) has a great sale today on the frozen tilapia, so that’s what I got! 

2 sliced lemons, sliced thinly in the shape of a circle :)

DIRECTIONS:

  • Mix together marinade

  • Line baking sheet with aluminum foil

  • On baking sheet, line the middle of the pan with the cut lemons

  • Place the fish directly on top of lemons, and coat generously with the mixed (room temp) marinade

  • Place veggies on the tray alongside of the fish. Coat the vegetables with a spray of olive oil and season as desired.

  • **use excess marinade as an extra seasoning for the veggies

  • Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200 C/ 400 F for 12-15 minutes. *until fish is flakey- test with a fork

    • ** for a crispier finish, after cooked: turn broiler on, and broil the dish for 1-2 minutes until golden brown on the top.

Recipe Notes/ PRO-tips:

  1. Pat dry the fish before you cook it

  2. Use a teaspoon of mayo to coat the fish to add moisture

  3. Cook fish on top of lemons to add moisture

  4. Do not over cook fish, it will be dry and chewy. Tilapia is a very delicate fish and it is very easy to overcook it. For really moist and tender Tilapia, Bake at 200 C / 400 F for 10-12 minutes.

  5. When using more tough veggies, par-bake in oven first, or after the fish has been cooked. I personally cook the entire dish first, and then stick the vegetables back in the oven until golden brown.

  6. The dish is best served hot and not reheated, but you can always make the dish, and serve on top of a bed of arugula or lettuce the following day.

  7. Use the excess juice from the pan to coat the fish before serving

  8. If you are using frozen fillets, then make sure you thaw it completely before baking.

Diary of an addict

"I am fine. I am okay. I am in love with myself. I am beautiful the way God made me. Screw the people that say I need to lose weight.. I DO NOT need to." I often used to say this to myself. 

Diet after diet.. change after change.. breakup after breakup.. I kept using my weight as my crutch.

Weight loss... it’s not just loosing weight. It’s a life changing emotional journey, that has many ups and downs. Tonight, for the first time since January, I realized I did this.. I DID THIS. This has been the ONE thing in my entire life that I can truthfully say I DID, and I am working so hard to continue to do so. I don’t see my weight loss, and I get very hard on myself. I see numbers, I see positive messages, but I do not feel worthy of the accomplishments that I have made. I don’t realize my self worth, even though I post often about health and self love. I get down on myself. The picture I posted tonight reminds me that no matter what I have been through, and what I go through...

I can do it, I am doing it, and I will continue to do it. I am doing it for ME. I am proud of ME. I did love myself. I look back at the old pictures and am ashamed. I am broken hearted that I didn’t see that I needed help. I needed saving. I’m blessed by the grace of God to have had the love and support from such amazing people. I seriously do not understand how I was blinded. I  sit back and recognize that it was, and is an addiction. I needed help. I needed someone to grab my hand and say DO IT. My bestfriend significantly pushed this, and without him bringing it to my attention.. I cannot say that I would honestly be living right now. I was sad. I was scared. I was living in a 330 lb body that was being controlled by an addiction. I was an addict. I am an addict. I just now have to take it ONE day at a time to overcome such a battle, and keep pushing forward. God gave me that second chance, you supported me through it, and I have to keep doing it.

My honest Reboot

I have not been fully honest with y'all. While loosing weight has been amazing, and my life has changed a lot, it is very hard for me. I have been struggling to love myself, and struggling to stay possitive through this terribly long plateau. I recorded this video to share how I am feeling about it all..below. 

I have been trying my hardest to REBOOT...ergo the REBOOT vitamin infusion from Vitaliv Therapies. 

Thank you all so much for your love and support. Simply put, I could not do it without you. 

 

What drives you?

WOW, I cannot believe that it has already been 6 weeks since my surgery. I feel like just yesterday I was sitting in Baylor Hospital prepping for "the big day". 

This week was great. I went on my first road trip since surgery. Now, I know many of you are thinking.. uh why would that matter?

SO, let me ask you:

When you go on road trips what do you do?

Do you take pit stops? Do you sleep? Do you scream are we there yet and annoy the living daylight out of your family and friends?

Well in my family, whenever we drive down to Houston we always stop at Bucee's. We would walk in to the gas station with our sweatpants on, hair in tangles up in buns, get the largest drinks, and most delicious (unhealthy) snacks to munch on. I can honestly say that not once in my life have I looked at the calorie content in each of the snack bags. I DEFFINITLEY never thought about how many grams of sugar were in a soda. I know you continue to read this and wonder why I am going on about Bucee's, here is why. This past weekend when we drove to Houston, I packed my own food. We did not stop at Bucee's. I had will power. Yes, we did stop at a gas station in between, and yes my brother got unhealthy snacks, but for the first time in my life, I did not crave them. It sounds so simple, but for me, this was a monumental moment in my life. Just like that, I knew the trip would be fabulous. 

It started off with a bang. I got to see my lovely cousins in Houston. My cousin Isabela, and I danced through Saturday night,(I got 15,000 steps) and it was honestly the most fun I think I have ever had. Sunday we all went to mass, and had a bbq for lunch. While everyone ate burgers for the meal, I focused on my goals. I served myself turkey, with grain mustard, a small low fat babybell cheese, and 4 olives. I know.. that kind of sounds terrible, but I was so satisfied, and not to mention.. so full.. A concept in which i'm not sure I will never fully understand!!! 

We drove back to Dallas late that night and continued on with the week. My weeks recently have consisted of the same things. I wake up, make breakfast, drink water 30 minutes after (with the gastric bypass process this is CRUCIAL), workout, help TAKE STOCK!!, eat?, drive around dallas, do squats, shower, eat again somewhere in there, and sleep.

This Wednesday there was a great change of pace. While I did continue to go about my day, I also had time to stop by Septien. Ever since I can recall, Septien has been my safe haven. I practically grew up there. When I was a kid I attended summer camps, and took lessons often. I learned to sing, act, and dance. With that, I learned the truest form of expressing myself while doing what I love. When I was 9, Remington recorded my first cover, Love you I do, by dream girls. Since then, he has recorded, and help me incredibly. Even to this day, I belive he is one of the most talented songwriters and producers I know. His mother, Linda Septien, is a powerhouse in the music industry, but more importantly such an incredible role model for me. Visiting yesterday made me realize that I really need to start kicking it in gear with my music again. I have not sang in over a month because my surgery has really taken a toll on my diaphragm. Thankfully visiting Septien has reminded me that I can do it. 

Over the past 6 weeks I have been through a lot. My entire life has changed, for the best. Throughout my process, out of all the weeks, this week has been the best week I have had yet. While change sometimes sucks, and cravings are the worst, I am slowly starting to recognize the love I have for myself, my music, and my life. I saw this week how much music has truthfully always been my passion. I felt a rush of inspiration to perform again after Wednesday night. I could not be more excited and ready for my future. If you had one thing which would inspire you to keep going in life.. what would it be? Better yet, what keeps you going now.. is it your passion?

Recorded at Septien for an audition, by Remington. Originally sang by Tori Kelly. Cover by MC.

Out and about

Hi guys! I quickly just want to thank everybody from the bottom of my heart for the support. I never realized that this blog would touch so many people, and I'm so blessed that it has.

As of yesterday, I am three weeks post op from my first original gastric bypass surgery. Late ‪Monday afternoon‬, I went to my first post op doctor appointment with Dr. Davis, at @Center for Metabolic and weight loss surgery at Dallas (on Facebook). 

Of course going to the doctors is never fun.  I thought to myself, what if he tells me I can't eat food yet? What if I have gained weight? what if this? What if that…?
I arrived to the office, and the first thing they did was weigh me. My nurse looked at me and said "Since, March 17, You have lost 38 pounds." I was floored, it's only been a month, and I haven't even gotten the chance to work out. After that I met with my doctor, Dr. Davis, and it was all so exciting. He said, "Your incisions look good, you look good, and now you are allowed to do whatever you want (meaning: I could drive, exercise moderately, and even help my mom run errands😂). 
As many of you know, I've been on a liquid diet for the past five weeks. That day, Dr. Davis gave me the OK to eat food... soft foods, but still, food. I don't think I've ever been so excited to hear the words, "you can eat an egg"  in my entire life. 

Afterwards my mind couldn't stop thinking about what I wanted to have for dinner. Of course me being a sushi fanatic, thought what better way to celebrate than with salmon. 
So, to commemorate the occasion, I took a short video. It is all about showing y'all what life as a gastric bypass patient, when it comes to eating for the first time. It was the weirdest thing. David, and I went to go fish poke, in Preston center. I walked up to the register and saw two bowls, a 24 ounce size, and 36 ounce size. I looked at the lady and laughed, and said, "do you guys have a kids menu?" I never thought in my entire life I be ordering off of the kids menu, but thankfully, they didn't have one. I explained my situation to the lady, and she let me order a la cart. I got a scoop of 2 ounces of salmon, and a scoop of 2 ounces of avocado. My whole meal cost four dollars. I sat down and thought... there is no way I i'm going to get full off of just this. I had to remind myself that it was all mental. I saw these one and a half ounce cups and decided I was going to separate my meal into them. I purposefully did so before I ate, to tell myself that I had to stop after I ate my portion. The weirdest thing happened, I got full of 1 1/2 ounces, which blew my mind. The way the gastric bypass works is as so: 60 g of protein a day, 60 ounces of water, low sugar, low-carb, and healthy fat. (Thank GOODNESS for my Doctor and his office for being so hands-on. These past five weeks I've been super stressed out and they have been beyond helpful with explaining whatever I have questioned.) 
Anyways, this was my first time eating with my new tiny belly, and I thought that I would share with you guys what it felt like. 
Last night, we cooked a perfect Chilean Seabass thanks too, Perle, from Jean Philippe. What is your favorite high-protein snack? Do you guys have any yummy recipes? Please share, I cannot wait to hear!

Week 3; God's Unexpected plans

These past three weeks have been very trial and error for me. March 28, I had my first surgery. March 31, I had another surgery, and the following week, I took much-needed time to recover. I received beautiful flowers, gifts, prayers, text messages, and phone calls, from lovely people. The level of support and love that I have received in the past three weeks is impeccable.
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, were very hard on me, but as the week continued on, day by day I was healing. Every day I could add a few extra ounces to my meals, and drink more water. Friday I was actually feeling my best. 
Finally feeling like I could conquer the world, I figured it was about time I spiced up my food regimine. So that day, Friday, my Tia Paulita came by the house and helped me cook. We made 4 different kinds of puréed veggie soups. Every single one was absolutely gourmet and delicious.
Late Friday night I started to feel a bit off, so I took my anti-nausea medicine and went to bed. Saturday morning I had a cup of soup, and 10 minutes later got sick. It wasn't just throwing up, it was strange, I knew something was wrong. I threw up blood. The situation seemed similar to when I knew I was sick the day after my first surgery. As Saturday went on it became harder and harder to keep anything down. By Sunday, I could not take any medicine, and I was still getting sick. We contacted my doctor and he recommended I took My Lanta. I tried to do that but sadly I got sick. At that point he knew something was wrong too. He called Baylor Hospital and reserved us an incredible room, with a beautiful view. That night we got there and were greeted by a lovely nurse, who had both beds made for me and my mom, and an IV ready to give me. Due to the fact that I could not keep any liquids down for two days, I became very dehydrated.
We got my IV in by using this new machine called a vein finder, which was absolutely insane. Once I got my medicines and fluids started, I was off to sleep. At 8 AM the next morning I went in for an endoscopy. Dr. Davis noticed that in the endoscopy, he was able to get the tube entirely down through my stomach by moving a bit of scar tissue that was being built over. The acid in my esophagus finally subsided, and by the end of the procedure I was feeling much better.
     I finished around 10 AM and was sent back to my room to see if I could finally get down liquids. My room was located right behind the emergency landings for the helicopters. Being in that room really made me realize how blessed I am.

While I was trying to relax and get down my food, a lady named Beebee walked in to the room. She was a substitute Eucharistic minister taking over for someone named Richard wood. Funny story, I did not know that the minister would be working on Mondays. My grandfather,  Richard Wood,  happens to be out of town right now in Greece, celebrating Greek Easter. If this incident would've happened any other Monday, my grandfather would've been the one giving me communion. I was completely in awe. 
Later two nights ago, we were released from the hospital. Jeremiah Tyson and Cristen Cooper came over and gave me so much love. We laughed for many hours, and finally they went home once they saw that I was bobbing my head because I was so tired. 
  The one thing that is getting me through this journey is God. I have been in a lot of pain, I promise you this isn't easy. Of course. I am ready to lose weight, but you can never prepare yourself enough for something like this. Life always has its ups and downs, but it is hard. Mentally it is still hard for me to grasp that I will never be able to eat a normal plate of food again. On the other hand, I am grateful that I am given a second chance to overcome my addiction with food. It is hard waking up and smelling bacon when your brother is cooking it, or smelling butter and garlic, knowing that if I eat that right now, I will get sick. I am on a liquid diet for the next two weeks, and I have been on this diet for the past four weeks. I am officially down 32 pounds since March 17, 2017. I am very proud of myself.
Speaking about how I am getting through this, I should mention my, Alison Wood. My mom has been my saving grace. I'm so grateful for the love I have received from her. My mom has been taking care of me for the past three weeks, well my whole life, but these past three weeks have been very very difficult. I'm so grateful for everything that she does. She has a job from 8 to 6 every day.. called Take Stock Inventory (you should really check it out), she is selling the house, she has to stage the house, box the house up, go to work, take my brother to school, pick him up, feed us, make sure I have my medicine and that I am comfortable, and live her own life. On top of that.. I have had two unplanned surgeries this past week and a half and I don't know how she juggles it all. She gives absolutely everything that she has, to us, and I will never know how to repay her. She is the most wonderful mother in the world.