OK so this is going to be a long post. If you would just like the recipe, scroll to the bottom!
Thanksgiving is one festival which I really look forward to! I think I like it even better than Christmas. Of course the food is one big attraction. However, more important than that is the fact that it forces you to look back at the past year and urges you to be thankful. As they say ‘There is always something to be thankful for’ and what a true statement that is!
For me personally this past year has given me many things to be thankful about. Last November, my RA was at its worst since my diagnosis in 2015. I had tried medications first only to give them up a few months later because of terrible side effects. Then I tried naturopathy, ayurveda and homeopathy. But nothing helped and last November I found myself in front of a new rheumatologist. Reviewing my blood test reports and by examining my joints, he suggested that I go on Rituxan infusions. Rituxan is a very potent chemo drug that is also used to treat RA but can cause serious, even potentially fatal, side effects. Being a pharmacist, I knew about this and so asked the doctor if he could prescribe something else instead and suggested a combination of meds instead. He reluctantly agreed but did not paint an encouraging picture for me.
I did not want to accept the doctor’s prognosis of my disease and decided to think positive. I kept searching the internet for stories of individuals who had turned their RA and other autoimmune diseases around by diet and lifestyle change. I found myself a new naturopath who introduced me to the AIP diet. I started on both- the meds as well as the diet in December of last year. And I prayed. A lot. I wrote down a list of all the things/tasks that I was not able to do then. And then on top of the list I wrote : I will get back to doing these things again…I know I will. The top 3 items on the list were :
- Snuggle playfully with my kids in bed
- Climb up and down the stairs freely without pain or fatigue
- Wear a jacket easily without my shoulders hurting
I prayed with a faith that I never had before. Reading the Bible regularly with a friend helped me to get into that frame of mind. I did not allow for negative and depressive thoughts to linger on my mind. I kept telling myself that I refuse to accept this pain and disability and will do whatever it takes to get better. Doing the AIP diet was one of the ‘whatever it takes’! It was tough to be on AIP. I was already gluten free , dairy free and legume free by then. But on AIP I had to give up my beloved rice too! And that was tough. The first month was very, very hard. But I persisted. The desire to get better was so overpowering that I was willing to do anything. Yes, whatever it takes.
My naturopath also asked me to exercise which was again tough to begin with. My knees and shoulders were so painful and sore that even just climbing onto the elliptical was tough. But I did it in baby steps. The first few days I went to the gym and just sat on the stationary bike and eyed the elliptical building up my mental stamina. And finally one day I had the courage to try it. Slowly with each passing day I got better and I did more and more.
If you have been reading my posts this past year, you would have seen how these changes along with my decision to quit my job early on this year helped me to get better. Last month my blood reports were all in the normal range. Of course I am still on meds but my rheumatologist is also surprised at my recovery. So there is something to be said about holistic healing. I am able to do more than half of the things on my wish list now. And I am hopeful that very soon I will be able to do all of them.
So you see, I have so much to be thankful for. I thank the Lord for making me change my perspective – to go from being depressed and full of self-pity to feeling overwhelmingly positive. I am thankful for having the support of my wonderful family – my loving husband, children, sisters and dad. Also my close friends who made me retain my sanity in those difficult times. Most importantly, I am so thankful that I no longer have to balk away when my daughter comes running up to me to give me a tight hug! God, I am so, so thankful.
OK so now for these pumpkin donut holes that are completely grain free and dairy free. So I make these regular pumpkin munchkins for my munchkins and thought why don’t I try making these with coconut flour? Was fairly easy to make the dough. But then as soon as I put them in hot oil to deep fry, guess what? Oh no!.. they totally disintegrated! Yes completely! I almost gave up on having any pumpkin munchkins for myself but decided to bake these using my mini muffin / cake pop pans.
Boy, was I glad I did that! These babies amazingly resisted breaking apart when inside those tiny moulds and came out perfect. They are still quite soft to handle but hey, they are absolutely delicious!
So this recipe is another thing to be thankful for this year! And what better than to share with all of you guys!
Psalm 107 “Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!”
- 2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
- 2 tbsp coconut sugar
- ¼ cup thick pumpkin puree (homemade or canned)
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- Pinch sea salt
- ¼ tsp pumpkin pie spice (use ¼ tsp cinnamon powder for AIP)
- ½ cup plus 2 tbsp coconut flour
- coconut sugar for sprinkling on top
- Add the melted coconut oil, coconut sugar and the pumpkin puree into a large mixing bowl.
- Add the baking soda, salt and the pumpkin pie spice (or cinnamon powder). Mix well.
- Then slowly add the coconut flour little by little till you can form a dough.
- Divide the dough into small balls - about 11-12.
- Preheat oven to 350 deg F (180 deg C). Place the balls onto the mini muffin or cake pop pans.
- Bake for 10 mins. Then flip the donut holes gently and bake for another 4-5 mins.
- Take pans out of the oven and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Roll the donut holes gently over coconut sugar.