Tag Archives: health

Gluten-Free/Dairy-Free Banana Bread

Here is an easy recipe for Gluten-Free/Dairy-Free Banana bread that I tweaked from Pinterest (I added my own ingredients as a substitute!) I was nervous about doing this at first, but it came out perfect! It does NOT need to rise before being put into the oven (the baking soda in the recipe will help this as it heats up)

Ingredients:

-1 cup Bananas

-2 eggs (room temperature)

-2/3 cup Almond Milk (or any non-dairy milk of your choice)

-1/3 cup Coconut Oil

-2 Cups Gluten-Free Flour (if your Gluten-Free flour doesn’t have Xanthan Gum in it, then add 3/4 tsp of Xanthan Gum to this recipe)

-1/2 cup of Cane Sugar

-1/2 tsp Sea Salt

-1 tsp Vanilla Extract

1/2 tsp baking soda

-1 tsp Baking Powder

Add 1/2 cup of your preferred nut to make the banana bread nutty!

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Mix together your sugar, baking powder, baking soda, Gluten-Free Flour, Sea Salt, nuts (optional), and Xanthan Gum (add this only if your flour does not include this ingredient) together in one bowl.

Get out a second bowl. Add your eggs, vanilla extract, coconut oil, non-dairy milk, and mashed bananas into this bowl. make sure to mix the ingredients together well.

Now, mix both bowls of ingredients in the same bowl together.

Once your ingredients are all mixed together, pre-grease a bread loaf pan and fill it with the batter.

Put the bread loaf in the oven for 45-55 minutes (this depends on the oven, mine took 45 minutes to bake) Check it with a toothpick to be sure it is fully cooked.

Once your banana bread is cooked, take it out of the oven and place it where it can cool down for 15 minutes.

Cut, eat, and enjoy! Be sure to wrap it tightly once you are done to help keep it fresh for a couple of days. Feel free to freeze whatever you do not use!

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-Rebecca Elizabeth A Punk With MS

 

 

 

 

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The Old Me, A Memoir

I miss the days where I didn’t have to pay attention to what I ate, or how hard I pushed myself.

I miss the times where I bathed in the sun with not a care in the world. Nowadays when I’m in the heat too long, I overheat and feel ill.

I miss not having so many doctor’s appointments and having a completely open schedule to do as I please during the days I didn’t have to work.

I miss working a lot.

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I miss the days when my body would not attack itself, the days without dealing with one migraine after another, and the days without having to take so many pills.

Today I say goodbye to the old me, and focus on today the best that I can. I will forever miss the old me, but a part of her will always remain. You can say goodbye to the old you too, it doesn’t mean that you have to completely forget her/him. Take care of yourself and try to accept your current situation  (as tough as it may be.) Dwelling on who you used to be all the time can reopen old wounds and cause you even more unnecessary pain. You can do it, I believe in you.

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– Rebecca Elizabeth (A Punk With MS)

Multiple Sclerosis; Coping With Challenges

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic illness that causes your body to attack its own central nervous system. This leads to myelin damage and misfiring of the nerves. Myelin is the layer that covers and protects the nerves. During relapses (or attacks)  Your body attacks the myelin in the brain, optic nerves, and even the spinal cord. These attacks cause numbness, tingling, weakness, fatigue, nerve pain, and even possibly the loss of mobility later in life. (this is for some MS patients not all.) Permanent damage can cause a lot of obstacles for patients who are trying to live as normal as possible.

The list of Multiple Sclerosis symptoms are long, but being able to cope with the everyday changes, challenges, and obstacles is one of the most important things.

 

1. Find A Support System In The MS Community

The MS community is one that is widespread and always readily available. Before the wonderful world of the internet, patients had to read up information from the small number of books locally available and got any other information on the disease directly from their neurologists. There wasn’t as much research done on MS back then, and it was hard to find others who understood the disease. This lead to more patients feeling alone, isolated, and extremely depressed.

Nowadays at the click of a button, you can find friends who also have MS and even endless topics about the disease. The world is at your fingertips (literally) so go out there, make some friends, and educate yourself as much as you possibly can. Being a part of the community will make your hardships and challenges much easier because you can relate to others who understand.  I use M.S. Connect and MS Pals on Facebook. These are great groups for support.

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2. Know It Isn’t The End

You may be newly diagnosed or may have been dealing with this disease for years. Regardless of the situation, days get tough and yes it can be very frightening. Remind yourself that the medical field is advancing daily. For example; scientists just found out that our blood molecules can possibly define what type of MS we have and what treatments will help us.  This is a huge breakthrough in MS research. We haven’t found a cure yet, but we can’t give up hope.

 

3. Pick Up A Hobby

Hobbies are a great way to pass the time, especially for those who are on disability. If you do happen to work still, a new activity or hobby could help lessen your depression. For me personally, I write, I draw, I even play guitar sometimes. When I don’t have the energy for that, I read or I watch my favorite T.V. show. The distraction helps me get through my harder days, and being productive in writing makes me feel like I am doing something that benefits others since I no longer work. You can find something that will help you too. Check out Creative MS Expressions, a community on Facebook where others with MS share their art and creativity. Mary Pettigrew (The founder of MS Pals) Runs this group and is a huge MS advocate in the community.

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4. Get Involved

If you feel like you want to help make a difference or just need to get out of the house, The Multiple Sclerosis Society has many different events where you can meet others and fundraise for the fight against Multiple Sclerosis. If you want to see when an event is happening near you, be sure to click the link! There are also other opportunities they offer that include advocating and volunteering.

5. Take Care Of Your Body

Having MS means being aware of what you put into your body, and making sure you exercise. This will make you stronger over time and can help combat fatigue. Healthy eating (such as reducing inflammatory foods) and taking vitamins are some simple yet very effective ways that can help you through this MS journey.

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I hope that this article helps you overcome your current MS challenges and obstacles. Remember that you are not alone and that there are many people who are here standing/sitting right beside you throughout this battle.

-Rebecca Elizabeth A Punk With MS

 

 

 

Spirituality and Religion? What is it Truly?

Spirituality can mean many different things. To some people, it means meditating, helping the needy, or even worshipping the earth. In my humble opinion, there isn’t a “wrong way” of being spiritual. Hell, collect different types of rocks and gems if that’s your thing. Worship whoever you want, go to church, or stay home and vibe out. The ball is in your court.  Spirituality is a journey, so is religion. It’s not something that comes naturally to many. Be yourself, and do whatever makes you happy. Your beliefs are just that; your own. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.

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-Rebecca Elizabeth A Punk With MS

“I Am The Sky”A New Branch Of Support

Mental health is always a topic that carries stigma. Some people are open about their mental illnesses, and others are not. Thomas Dyer, a caring member of a small Maine community in Orono, is taking a step forward to help those who are in need of someone to talk to for mental health support across the country. He know’s what it’s like to struggle with mental health issues, and wants to give back. He started a confidential 24/7 support line called “I Am The Sky” He has even started a Go Fund Me page in hopes that people will donate to help his non-profit organization grow even further. I spoke with Thomas today, and asked him a few questions about how this idea came about, and asked him about his hope for I Am The Sky’s future.

 

Me: Thomas, I understand that the topic of mental health is something you are very passionate about. How did this organization start?

Thomas: I Am The Sky is something that I’ve wanted to start for so many years. It’s something I’ve had in my brain for far too long. I grew struggling with depression and severe anxiety, and I was surrounded by people who I felt didn’t understand. I felt so alone, and that feeling itself makes the idea of suicide that much easier. After years of this feeling I came to realize that if people like myself could come together and help one another, we could in some way save each other’s lives. And since that day, I’ve been trying to put this project together.

Me: How did you come up with the name “I Am The Sky”? Does it have any significant meaning to you personally?

Thomas: I Am The Sky has so much meaning to me. This phrase alone kept me going. A while back I was told by a wonderful person that anxiety, depression, and fear, are all clouds in the sky, and I was the sky. And no matter how cloudy it got, no matter how bad the weather was, I’d still be there and the clouds would go away, because I Am The Sky.

Me: That is the most beautiful story. I absolutely love the name. What is your mental health story? Only share what you are comfortable sharing.

Thomas: My mental health story is lengthy I won’t lie. I’ve suffered from severe depression, social anxiety, and was diagnosed with schizophrenia when I was a kid. It was all so debilitating for me, I felt like I was trapped. I found a wonderful agency that helped me learn to cope with my problems. And after years of being a client I became a worker. I felt so alive helping people, and in return helped myself.

Me: What are your hopes for I Am The Sky’s future?

I hope that someday in the near future we can become a well known source of help for those who need it. I hope that we can, even if by a little, help people feel less alone.

Me: What would you like to tell people who are reading this article right now?

Everyone who knows me knows I say this alot, Be yourself. Love yourself, everything about yourself. Be different, and create. This life has so much to offer. There will always be a struggle, someone putting what you do down, but forget them. Show them why you are here. But always remember, You’re worth it.

 

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Follow I am the sky today to help support others who are fighting mental health issues. One like, donation, or share could possibly save someone’s life. Here are the links:

I Am The Sky On Facebook

I Am The Sky On Instagram

I Am The Sky Go Fund Me

-Rebecca Elizabeth A Punk With MS

Vegetarian Chili

Here’s my recipe for a delicious vegaterian friendly chili! I have been weaning off of red meat recently, and can vouch that this meal will definitely satisfy any type of chili or meat craving. (I know it satisfies mine)

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You’ll need:

2 cups of Gardein beefless ground (or any other beef free ground you can find) 

1tbsp of garlic

1tbsp olive oil

1 15oz cans of diced tomatoes (with green chilies)

1 15oz cans of red kidney beans

1/2 tsp of Chili powder (adjust this to your style of taste because the green chilies in with the tomatoes are really spicy as it is )

1tsp of Mrs. Dash Salt Free roasted garlic and herb 

1tsp of Mrs. Dash Table Blend

1/2 cup of diced onions (frozen or raw)

Directions:  in a medium frying pan, put your olive oil in the pan until it heats up. After this, put your diced onions into the pan and fry it on medium high until they are brown.

Once browned, add your beefless ground into the pan. Make sure to add your garlic and all your spices in with your beefless ground.

Once your beefless ground is thawed in the pan, add your can of diced tomatoes with green chili’s and can of red kidney beans. DO NOT DRAIN.

be sure to taste test your chili, as you may need to adjust the spices to your taste.

Lower the pan to medium heat, and allow the chili to simmer. Once simmered for 5-10 minutes, turn off the heat and enjoy. Refrigerate any leftovers you have for another day. Double the recipe to serve more people!

 I will note, If you need to keep your diet with less salt, feel free to use salt free canned diced tomatoes as a substitute. Also, I have added a 1/2 cup of diced green peppers to this recipe before and it came out just as good. This meal can be great on top of rice.

-Rebecca Elizabeth A Punk With MS