Saturday, 27 August 2011

Be kind to your gut and your purse

Firstly I must apologise if anyone was eating their dinner when they came across my photo yesterday, hope it didn't put you off too much. I'll explain how it came about. I haven't been feeling too well in the digestion department, mostly during the night and first thing in the morning. All other times I am hunkydory, fit and feeling great.

My GP decided to send me to the hospital for one of those camera thingys down the throat, to check what is going on in the depths of my innards. I am pleased to say everything is just fine, and any future symptoms can be treated with acid suppression medication as and when required.

I saw all the photographs, and I must say I didn't expect them to be so clear. Looking at the different views as the camera went down into my stomach, I was struck by how beautiful my innards are.

It's made me realise just how important it is to look after the inside as well as the outside. I am going to be even more aware of everything I put into my mouth from now on. Eating the right quality and quantity of food is very important. Although my eating habits are quite good, there is always room for improvement.

No more scoffing a whole packet of biscuits and bunging up the system. Only one or two glasses of wine at a time, not half a bottle. I have been wandering into the cake department at the supermarket a few times, especially if they have been reduced, that has got to stop.

No more forgetting to eat all day, then having a whopping meal in the evening. Now I will eat smaller portions more often. Allow one lot of food to pass down and go through, before piling more on top. Give my body the time it needs to digest food properly. Make time for my meals, chew everything twenty times before swallowing, digestion starts in the mouth.

My beautiful digestive system has served me well so far, I need to look after it, and treat it with care and respect. I am lucky that I have had the opportunity to view myself from the inside.

To make up for inducing nausea in some of my readers yesterday, here are two more pleasing photo's I took this morning while out for a walk.

It's bright and blustery here, the clouds are skipping across the sky at a rate of knots. I do hope anyone over on the east coast of America is not hit too badly by Hurricane Irene, my thoughts are with you.

Just a couple of notes to finish off. My combined gas and electricity bill has arrived for the period 18th May to 19th August. Gas £15.53. That's for rings and grill on the cooker, I don't use the oven, and a bath every two weeks. The heating has not been used. Electricity £31.73. That's for lighting, upright fridge/freezer, kettle, microwave, computer most days, radio sometimes, and occasional use of toaster.

I could probably cut down on computer use, and I am using the gas ring to heat a mug of water for coffee. (I only have one or two mugs a day) This is the lowest the bills will be for the year as we approach longer nights and shorter days, and the temperature starts to drop. I am going to hang on for as long as I can before I turn the heating on, might even make it to November when the next bill arrives.
British Gas have estimated that if I continue to use energy at the same rate, over the next twelve months, the cost will be £254.42. Sounds reasonable to me, but I have to say that if prices go up my priority will be to use less. I have the same attitude to paying for fuel as I do for paying for anything else. If I don't like the price I don't buy it. I am a tough old bird, having spent most of my working life outdoors.

Our Tesco have just finished putting a new canopy on their store, paid for by their insurance no doubt as the last one fell down in the heavy snow. To celebrate this momentous occasion they have sent out extra money off vouchers which I plan to use. Usually the deal is that you spend £40 and get £4 off, I struggle to spend anything near that amount on my weekly or even fortnightly shop. These new vouchers are £4 off a £20 shop, so that's more like it. There are four vouchers to use over a four week period. So starting next week I will do a shop at my usual time of 7pm or later, to get the last date reduced items, then I will make it up to £20 with bogof's, (food that I know I will eat), and tins and packets for the store cupboard. Over four weeks I will need to spend £80, for which I will pay £64, and my cupboards will be full enough to last me well into the winter. Planning ahead is the key.
Toodle pip.


  1. £15.53 for gas not bad, ,just had our bill...89p! apparently only used 1 unit of gas, see blog post

    Josie x

  2. Good advice re the healthy eating habits. Glad you are fit and well and ready to fight another day (or at least another decade or 2).

    I'm curious to know why you heat your water for coffee on the ring? is that cheaper than boiling a kettle?

  3. Hi Kath, It take two mugs of water to cover the element in my kettle, therefore every time I have a drink I am wasting one mug full. I have a small pan and I measure one mug of water to heat on the gas ring, thinking that will be cheaper. I haven't actually compared gas v electric per kilowat hour or however they measure it, but history tells me that gas has always been cheaper than electricity.

  4. Ah I see.
    I thought it was a money saver. I have a very small kettle, sold at Asda years ago as a "single mug" kettle which I use for tea making.
    When I first met my husband he would fill the WHOLE kettle for one cuppa!!
    I soon cured him of that LOL

  5. Your pic yesterday was interesting and pretty. Maybe someone else will be interested in checking their innards. That is a beautiful sky you posted today. I would give up hot tea for a hot I am parsimonious, but a bath is a health issue in my mind--mental as well as physical.

    I do not drink any hot liquid even in the winter. Okay, if I do have hot chocolate, I must drink a full glass of water with ice to get the ickiness from my stomach.

    Would one of the things that you stick in the cup to heat the water use less electricity?

    What is a ring?

  6. Thanx for the warm thoughts. Hurricane Irene will hit us tonight about 12 AM here in Ocean City, Maryland. Posted a blog about it yesterday and will post one after tomorrow, hoping to get some good beach pics tomorrow or Monday to include in the blog... Til then hope the electric doesn't go out, but that would save us a bit! ;)

  7. Waiting all day here for the start of the hurricane to arrive here on the East coast of the US...just starting to rain! When I got my colonoscopy they gave me the pictures to take home..not sure why I would want them! Not like the ultrasounds of your soon to be baby!!

  8. have you considered taking probiotic supplement (avlb in Health Food Store( Also prebiotic foods are very good. The latter present in saurkraut, natural yogurt (sugar free), onions, garlic. Molkosan (available in health food store also excellent). Theseare all ways of taking control of your digestive gut health, which in turn improve increased absorbancy of nutrition in food by increasing your natural enzymes. In turn your immunity is boosted.

  9. Good idea about the smaller more frequent meals well chewed up. Sometimes wine (especially red and cheap) can be hard on the stomach especially as we get older.
    Great plan about the vouchers from Tesco - I do that sort of thing, we get money off in December by using our credit card - still pay it off at the end of the month.

  10. The photo from yesterday didn't bother me a bit...I see that sort of thing all the time in surgery at'd think I'd take much better care of my body after seeing what damage we do to ourselves...

    I don't use my oven either...have no microwave so it's stovetop or nothing...lots of eggs for my protein since they are cheap and easy...

    As always...thank you for a most inspiring and fun blog...I dream of visiting England and walking, walking, walking...

  11. Ilona,
    I missed the day you took off, just catching up reading the backlog of email, blogs etc. I missed while I was away.
    I, for one, certainly hope that you never cut back on your bloging time to cut computer time to save money. :-)
    If heartburn, acid reflux has been bothering you I suggest the diet changes you mentioned but keep on eating your yogurt. Just make sure that it says live cultures. Also you might try raising the head of your bed a few inches. Often 6 inches in recommended but 4 can also help. A couple of 2"x4" nailed together to make a 4"x4". Any scrap boards that can be put together to make at least 4". Put the risers under the legs at the top of the bed.
    Still loving your blog. YOU are an inspiration as many others said.
    Colorado USA

  12. Hi Ilona. Glad to hear the good news about your health. Have you thought of filling a flask with hot water each morning? It can be used for hot drinks throughout the day, & even taken out on your travels?

  13. Hi Linda, Thanks for the tip about filling a flask, I could do that, it would be a good idea in winter. I have a lot of cold drinks during the day, do not drink tea except to be polite when someone offers it to me. I don't have tea bags in the house. I like warm fruit juice so the flask idea would be good for that.

    Hi Candace. I have three pillows under my head which is more comfortable. Thanks for your suggestions.

  14. Hi Anonymous, Thank you for your nutrition info, I like to read up about it and often get books from the library. I eat lots of onions, they are often forgotten when preparing vegetables for dinner. People think you always need to fry them, I steam mine along with everything else. I put dollops of natural yogurt on my dinners instead of sauces, that way you can still taste the vegetables.

    I haven't considered probiotic supplements, mainly because they are so expensive. I'm not convinced they are absolutely necessary. If someone could guarantee that my health would improve greatly if I took them I might give it a go. Thanks for the idea though, I might take a closer look at what it says on the packs.


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