Tuesday, January 02, 2007

How Long Do You Wait?

About two months ago, I was sick with some mysterious illness that made me stay in bed all day and miss work. I went to the doctor, and they did some tests, gave me some medicine, and I got better quickly. They told me to come back in a few weeks to get the results of the tests, and when I did...

..the doctor said, "We're not going to discuss what you had three weeks ago, because you have dangerous cholesterol levels!"

My overall cholesterol levels were perfectly fine, but the balance between 'good' cholesterol and 'bad' cholesterol was completely off.

So the doctor gave me a prescription for some cholesterol medicine, and told me to take low-strength daily aspirin and certain nutritional supplements. He also said to not eat any dairy products, eggs or red meat for a month (this diet helped him after he had a heart attack associated with cholesterol levels similar to mine). The month being up, I went back today to get tested again, and I found out that I had been overdoing the dietary restrictions.

See, when the doctor said "don't eat dairy products", I understood that in a Jewish kashrut sense. No dairy. No milkhiks. I went from waiting 3 hours (which, contrary to what you may have heard, is a perfectly valid custom) to waiting 30 days. And it was not fun. I was in perpetual parva and poultry-based fleishikh zones. I was checking ingredients to see whether foods marked OU-D were actually hhalavi, and therefore medically asur, or just 'Dairy Equipment'.

Now I find out that eating milkhik food is fine, as long as I'm not having a big glass of chocolate milk, ice cream, butter, or other full-blown DAIRY foodstuffs more than once in a while (you can call it avi avot hehhalav if you want). Other medical professionals have told me that it's not the dairy that's the problem, but the fat content, and that low-fat or no-fat milk, cheese, etc, shouldn't be a problem.

What I really need, though, is more exercise.
Maybe I should make that a New [Gregorian] Year's Resolution.


Blogger tikkunger said...

first i love it when i can actually understand your posts! second thats a poor reflection on me and not you or your posts. actuality i still didn't get all of this post but i am happy to have been able to make sense of the tops half of it. this is a major step forward for me a reader.

anyhow if you are going to do some exercise can you do mine as well? also i think resolutions are great but i don't always keep them!

1/03/2007 7:39 AM  
Blogger Knitter of shiny things said...

You know what's good exercise?

Archaeology! (Though I was really tempted to say "your mom.")

1/03/2007 11:15 AM  
Anonymous Jacob Farkas said...

Glad to hear that you are doing better. Get back on your bike [as should I :-) ].

It is not so difficult to be Parva all the time. It takes a bit of adjustment, like anything in life.

Zeit Gezunt!

1/03/2007 12:44 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


heh, nooooo, exercise is one of those commandments that other people can't fulfill on your behalf :-P


if only!


one day i should tell you about how one year in college i had a vegan pesahh (unless i've already told you about that)

1/03/2007 12:49 PM  
Blogger Knitter of shiny things said...

Vegan pesach? eewww... Did you also not eat gebruchts? A week of matzah and vegtables?

1/03/2007 1:04 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


i said vegan pesahh, not crazy pesahh :-P . we ate both gebrukhts and non-gebrukhts foods. and lots of green leafy vegetables and potatoes and sweetpotatoes.

1/03/2007 1:06 PM  
Blogger Ezzie said...

first i love it when i can actually understand your posts!

Amen. :)

Woah - scary. I'm sure I'm still fine, though :P

1/03/2007 1:07 PM  
Anonymous Jacob Farkas said...


You did mention the Vegan Pessah...

KOST - My family's custom is not to eat Gebrukt food on Pessah, and it wasn't the end of the world. All it takes is a bit of creativity, an adventurous spirit, and it can be done.

1/03/2007 2:36 PM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

Vegan Peysach? Rice and beans.

Oops. You're Asky, aren't you? That probably means no rice or beans.

Tofu and matze.

Get better.


1/03/2007 5:32 PM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

Just remembered - Tofu is also kitnios-based.

Have tomatoes instead.

Those Asky chumras are tough.

1/03/2007 5:34 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


and i can't stand tomatoes :-P .
i only did the vegan pesahh thing once.

1/03/2007 5:35 PM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

Eggplant! Roasted eggplant mooshed with garlic and olive oil. Plus gehakte persel.

Very much like what was eaten in Egypt.

Of course, related thereto, I have often thought that bittermelon would be the perfect reminder of Egypt - even though it was probably never eaten there.

Momordica charantia. Available in Indian markets as Karela, in Chinese stores as Fu-Kwa. Philippinos know it as Ampalaya (and will look at you funny if you ask for it - "are you SURE you want that?"), Malays and Indonesians know it as Peria.

It is very good for you. Tonifying.

1/03/2007 8:10 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

Not a big fan of eggplant either, i'm afraid. Yes, as i've said before, i survived in Israel for two years while despising tomatoes, cucumbers, and eggplants.

Bittermelon sounds interesting... i wonder if it'd qualify as maror. I'm planning on using horseradish leaves next year.

1/03/2007 8:31 PM  
Anonymous Jacob Farkas said...

Bitter gourd is not bitter if prepared properly (salted, rinsed, and cooked).

Steg, where do you find horseradish leaves? [I'm assuming you don't grow your own...]

1/03/2007 9:38 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


sure i do :-)
you just buy a horseradish head, put it in some water, and it'll start growing roots and leaves. unfortunately i don't remember how long it takes for the leaves to grow to a large enough size to make it useful.

1/03/2007 10:40 PM  
Anonymous Jacob Farkas said...


I'll try it and let you know. Never thought of sprouting the thing, city boy that I am...

1/04/2007 12:25 PM  

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