Thursday, April 27, 2006

Odds and ends

Cliff smoked from the age of 12 until he was twenty-one; a round of Hepatitis caused him to quit, since smoking made him nauseous at the time.

During the last ten years or so, Cliff took up "social smoking" at work.  He'd buy a pack (yes, a pack... not a carton) of cigarettes and smoke on break at work; usually at the end of a work-week, he'd throw away any left in the pack because they'd get so dried out if he kept them.

Cliff and I assumed smoking such a little bit was relatively harmless.

So when the heart doctor asked, "How many years did you smoke?" Cliff included only those early, pack-a-day years; I mentioned, then, his round of smoking "only" a pack a week.

"So, how many years in all did he smoke?"

"You mean even the time when he wasn't smoking much?"

"How many years total did he smoke?"  The tone in his voice suggested I wasn't bright enough to understand such a simple question. 

It turns out that, if you are going to smoke, you may as well smoke plenty; because the doctor said it all counts the same.

After surgery, Cliff had to stay on oxygen longer than someone who'd never smoked, because of damaged lungs... even though he hadn't smoked at all in a couple of years.  Our family doctor recently told him he had considerable scar tissue on his lungs, and I guess that counted against him.

As we were preparing to come home from the hospital yesterday, I asked the nurse who was going over "do's and dont's" with us, "Can he have coffee and tea?"

"Oh yes," she answered.  "Ideally I suppose he shouldn't, but people seem to go home and do whatever they want anyhow."

"Not us," I informed her.  "I don't intend for his new arteries to get clogged up, if I can help it!"

I already have plenty of healthy cookbooks.  I'll be substituing two egg whites for each egg called for in recipes, and letting Sadie have the yolks.  I won't be using salt.  I'm studying up on saturated fat, and will be avoiding it. 

It's sort of a challenge, actually.  Wish me luck!


inquestoftruth said...

I wish you the best on the no-salt....keep in my my comment from before...that no salt while cooking then lite salt to taste might not be too bad...and lots of no/low sodium recipes in the Rice Diet Solution book.

msecz said...

I wish you the best of luck and please share as much of this as possible as I and we all could use help in this area too... Sandra

readmereadyou said...

You'll do just fine. It's a strange fact that everyone is different. I have a neighbor who has smoked since the age of 12 and she's 66 and she recently had a nodule removed from her lung, the doctor said, he couldn't believe she was a four pack a day smoker. Her lungs looked like that of a young person who never touched a cigarette. I sometimes thinks it's just all written in the stars. Smoking is not a good thing, of course, but as one doctor said to me once, "Americans always seem to blame themselves when they get an illness and illness is just a fact of life that happens." He had a point.

sassydee50 said...

Dear Mosie~I am thrilled to read that all is well and you are going home! God is good! Good luck on the healthy eating! xox Sassy

ksquester said...

Most people prefer olive oil.....I am a canola oil person; always have been. I will still eat butter, just sparingly.   It's a good challenge and one I am sure you will win!   Anne

madcobug said...

Good luck on the no fat diet. If you are planning on using some salt substitutes check your prescriptions as I have read on some of my B/P meds "Do not use salt substitutes". Helen

deslily said...

for the times you would like scrambled eggs there is egg beaters.. in a carton .. truth is they are egg whites with a touch of yellow coloring lol.. but thats one of the things the doc said was ok.. they also sell "egg whites" the same way.. these are good for eating but not for baking with.  they look watery but taste just fine .

we also use virgin olive oil here for the use of any oil.. and there are a few "margarines" out like "can't believe it's not butter" (ok for eating not for cooking) and "land o lakes spread".. this one is ok to cook with..both have ZERO cholestrol.

the no salt is much harder..every single thing canned has mega salt in them.. you just choose some with the lower numbers... frozen if possible is hugely better. and fresh, of course the best...  tone down red meats, eat more chicken, turkey and fish.. don't have to DELETE red meat just eat alot less of it.. (been doing this routine for years now.. i cheat now and then like anyone, but i keep tabs on how often and how much!!.. rarely and very little amounts.. but its better then saying "you can't ever have it".. t hat just makes it harder to accomplish)

you'll be surprised how fast you adjust to it all...  just glad all is going well for Cliff!!!!

am4039 said...

so happy that is is coming home and It's so good that you read up on this so you know what to do.

lanurseprn said...

I'm so happy he's home!!  You can get low salt canned goods but they can be pricey.  Better to just use fresh/frozen veggies.
Let us know how you are doing with the new diet.
Love to you both!

mastersblynn said...

You will probably lose even more weight because of the diet changes.  Less salt equals less water weight! Barbara

tendernoggle said...

when Danny was at Emory, they gave him"Promise" margarine at meals and he liked it so much that I continued to buy it for us at home...It is good and taste like butter. I used canola oil when I fried but mainly I baked or grilled.I did not salt the food, only used Mrs. Dash! The frozen veg. are not salty like the can ones and watch out for the canned soups...the nutricanist told us not to eat it at all, becasue it has so much salt in it.
Do not over work yourself, ok?

firestormkids04 said...

I don't cook with salt either, haven't for years.  We have salt available, but not at the table and salt substitute for myself and Rob.  Scary to think that even a pack a week makes so much difference.  I'm still praying for you guys.  Be blessed, Penny

csandhollow said...

Watch for transfat. That kind is actually worse than saturated fat!

siennastarr said...

I have no doubt you will get all down to a science in no time, Donna!  Your love for Cliff and his continued good health will see to that!