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You may remember, because it was just last week, that I recently celebrated my 39th birthday. I celebrated rather glibly, almost mocking my advancing age in a heart-warming, grace-filled and often humorous post on aging (If I don’t say so myself). I was all “39 is great! I’ve got this!” And I meant every word I wrote.
And then, this weekend, 39 looked at me gently shaking its head in condescension and promptly responded by punching me in the throat.
Yep, just five days after turning 39 I suffered a gallbladder attack of epic proportions. At least we now know it as a gallbladder attack. At the time I actually thought it was just, you know, a death attack. Yes, I 100% thought I was going to die as I lay on my cold tiled bathroom floor doubled over in pain. My younger self would probably have laughed at the idea that my gallbladder could cause that much pain. But, friends, this pain is real. It’s wicked. It makes childbirth seem like a walk in the park. It was so scary that my normally stoic husband was clearly rattled and my children were crying in the backseat of the car, wondering honestly if their mommy was going to die.
I’ll spare you the gory details, but yes, we figured out it was definitely a gallbladder attack. (thank you, WebMD*) Who knew?
38=fully function gallbladder.
39=bile-filled organ from hell.
Now I still have this little devil organ in my body. I haven’t opted to get it removed yet. And I honestly want to avoid the surgery if possible. So in order to stave off surgical intervention while simultaneously preventing another attack I decided to take matters into my own hands, making a bee-line straight for that font of all interweb knowledge, Pinterest. I wanted to gather as much intel as I could on my new internal enemy. So gather I did.
What I found was not overly surprising. Whenever your body decides to go haywire and things go crazy, it’s not a bad idea to look at your diet. Yes, I know I’m a crazy person when it comes to food and cooking. I understand that there are things that aren’t always linked to what you eat. But, for me, it just so happens that this attack came directly on the heels of a wickedly indulgent eating weekend. In fact, the pain started just 15 minutes after a meal of pizza and cheesy, garlicky breadsticks. So you connect the dots.
And because the foods that I ate kicked off this pain party in the first place I am taking it upon myself to work towards using food to bring me back to regularity. Focusing my research heavily on Anti-Inflammatory diets, I’ve decided to make a few changes. I realize that this might not stop the attacks completely and I might be trying to paddle upstream against the inevitable, but I’m going to give it a fighting try. Luckily, since I do already have a pretty clean diet, there are many things I make that fall well within the guidelines of the anti-inflammatory diet:
But, clearly, there is still room for improvement. And through my research there was one item I found on many lists that is honestly just a struggle for me. That item is green tea. Friends, I have tried 800 different kinds of tea. I’ve tried sweetened, unsweetened, hot, cold, green, black, raspberry. You name it. I’ve tried. And I hate them all. To me tea is like a cruel liquid joke. It smells so good as you brew it. Then you take a sip…and it’s this sad little wisp of a flavor, just a shell of the taste you expect based on the smell. And I hate it.
But being the good trooper I am, I realized that there is one way I can handle green tea, the uber-trendy yet uber-tasty Matcha Green Tea. I was first introduced to matcha by my friend Gwenyth Paltrow. GP, as I like to call her, has an amazing Matcha Latte in her cookbook It’s All Easy. This latte introduced me to a version of green tea that was decidedly coffee-like in texture and depth, and I was an instant devotee. Realizing now that I could use my new-found love of Matcha to concoct a healthier anti-inflammatory alternative to straight-up green tea I quickly got to work in the kitchen. And what I discovered was nothing short of a delicious Starbucks-worthy anti-inflammatory morning miracle, my Matcha Tumeric Power Latte.
This wonderful drink combines multiple anti-inflammatory ingredients along with the special boost of coconut oil, which is another ridiculously trendy health food that has multiple health benefits. It’s smooth, creamy, spicy and rich. I find that replacing one of my morning coffees (yes, I have multiple. I’m tired, folks, get over it) with this drink gives me a health and energy boost that I wouldn’t get from that added cup of joe. Sub it in to your morning routine. If, like me, you’re starting to feel the ticks and twinges of getting older and want to limit inflammation in your body, OR even if you’re not like me and you’re young and healthy, this is a great healthy drink that has benefits equal to it’s deliciousness. And we definitely can’t say that about plain old green tea.
*don’t freak out, people. I’m going to an actual doctor, and not relying solely on WebMD for my diagnosis (though they were pretty spot on).*
Matcha Tumeric Power Latte
- 8 oz non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened vanilla)
- 1 teaspoon matcha green tea powder
- 1/2 teaspoon tumeric powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger
- pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- *added sweetener to taste.
- Step 1 Whisk all ingredients except coconut oil in a small saucepan over medium heat.
- Step 2 Once combined and heated through (try not to boil), blend together with coconut oil over high speed for a few seconds to combine.
- Step 3 When blended the coconut oil should form a creamy foam on top of the liquid, making it truly latte-like.
- Step 4 Add additional sweetener to taste (may need more or less depending on the type of milk used)
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