Food Is My Medicine

by Lauren on October 3, 2011

Last week, I feel like I was complaining to you all how stinking humid it was.  This week, get ready for more complaining, only for the exact opposite reason.  We went from so humid you could hardly breath to so cold that I was forced to turn on the heat.

WTH happened to Autumn?

I didn’t really notice a huge difference today in how I felt only I did notice that the rash has spread up my leg and on to my bottom.  Nice.  (Don’t worry, I’ll spare you the picture of that one)

I managed to make it into work this morning and last about 1/2 of the day.  I decided to get some things done in the office and then pack up my work and relocate to the comfort of my couch.  It was actually a very good idea because I ended up getting more work done from home than I’ve been able to in weeks.

Still hungry and hungrier than normal.  Apparently, it’s not that unusual and quite scientific based on the response I read as to why this happens:

“When you are sick your body responds with inflammation to help heal itself. In response to the inflammation the body produces cortisol which then raises your blood sugar. Your body then produces more insulin to take the sugar into the cell. You then get hungry because you body needs more sugar (complex carbs). “

I wonder if this is the same effect during that time of the month?  Who knows but I do take it as a good sign when my appetite is in check.  When I loose it, that is when I start to get worried.


1/4 C Natures Path Pumpkin Raisin Crunch, 1/4 C Natures Path Heritage Flakes, 2 T Udi's Granola, Banana, Blueberries, Sunflower Seed Butter, Flax, Almond Milk


I was originally thinking salad for lunch (specifically the leftovers from yesterday’s lunch) but after feeling sick and cold all morning, I went for every ill man’s remedy… soup!

This was one can of Amy’s Vegetable Lentil with 1/2 can of green beans.  Fun fact- canned green beans are one of the only canned vegetable that I will eat and love.  I think I actually like the canned better than the real thing.

I still wanted that salad though so I portioned out a small side along with some Kashi crackers, hummus and grapes.

A very fibrous lunch that warmed my bones.

Not 30 min later, I was still hungry.  I grabbed a Cherry Apricot Almond Butter Granola Bar to power me through the rest of my work.

This lasted a few hours but then as soon as I finished up work for the day, I started making dinner at 4:30pm!  This never happens but what else was I supposed to do?


I’ve been craving stick to your ribs vegetable pasta with tons of sauce for days.  This is one of the ultimate comfort foods to me.  Tonight, I came up with the most incredible sauce that took the ordinary marinara to a whole new level of delicious.

Spaghetti Squash with Roasted Eggplant and Vegetable Marinara


Serves 2-4 (depending on how hungry you are)

  • 1 Spaghetti Squash
  • 1 Jar Marinara Sauce (I used Trader Joe’s Brand)
  • 1 Medium Eggplant (diced)
  • 1/2 C chopped Portobello Mushrooms
  • 1/2 C chopped broccolini
  • 2 T jarred sun dried tomatoes
  • Garlic (as much as your heart desires)
  • fresh basil
  • Salt and Pepper
Prepare squash- cut in half, place on a baking sheet with 1 in. water, cover and bake at 400* for 50-60 min.  Remove from oven to cool.
Chope your eggplant and mushrooms and place on a baking sheet.  Coat with cooking spray, salt, pepper and garlic.  Roast at 450* for 20-25 min.  Remove from oven and take all of the eggplant and place in your food processor or blender.  Pulse a few times to form a paste.
Empty the marinara sauce into a large saucepan.  Add the eggplant puree, remaining vegetables, fresh basil and garlic.  Simmer on medium-low for 30 min.
Scrape 1/2 of the squash into bowl and top with desired amount of sauce.  Top with parmesan and devour!
I think my raging appetite is finally tamed with a belly filled to the brim of vegetables.
As full as I may be, I will be making room for this tonight..
Finally got my fix!
Do you usually get more hungry when you are sick or loose your appetite? Unless I have the stomach flu, it’s always the first for me.  Toly doesn’t eat a single thing when he is stressed or sick though.  It actually makes me angry because I believe food cures all. 
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EricA October 3, 2011 at 8:07 pm

Oh girl! You should def work from home!!soup is my go to when im sick! Soup and gingerale have major healing properties! Glad you got the ice cream! If i have tummy issues, i have no appetite! Otherwise, illness doesnt seem to impact my hunger level

Traci October 3, 2011 at 8:22 pm

I hope you feel better soon!

I think you may like this documentary based on your thoughts about food as medicine. I watched it last night and loved it! The directors are showing it free for the rest of the week. I have no affiliation with this, but I loved it and wanted to share. :)

Lauren October 3, 2011 at 8:24 pm

Thanks Traci. I will definitely check it out.

Lauren @ What Lauren Likes` October 3, 2011 at 8:41 pm

Lovee the recipe! I need to eat more squash :)

CJ @ http:// October 3, 2011 at 8:45 pm

I’m usually more hungry when I’m sick and definitely crave more starchy comfort foods! I hope you feel better hun! And I’m so glad u got your ice cream! I also made spaghetti squash tonight and I really think it’s my favorite colder weather meal so far.
Get well girl!

Abby @ Abz 'n' Oats October 3, 2011 at 10:04 pm

Yep–definitely going to have to make that sauce for the next spaghetti squash in the fridge! Sounds tasty! :) I am usually less hungry when I am sick!

Kristin October 3, 2011 at 10:28 pm

For me, being sick is ALWAYS accompanied by a lot of food. Not only do I actually feel hungry more often, food (whether it “should” or not) comforts me. I am sorry you are sick :(

Jocelyn @ Peace Love Nutrition October 3, 2011 at 11:32 pm

I usually lose my appetite when I get sick– I eat endless amounts of soup broth!

Hope you feel better!

Lauren October 4, 2011 at 6:47 am

Thanks girl!

Melissa @ TryingToHeal October 3, 2011 at 11:47 pm

Ah, I hope you feel better! I definitely get hungrier when I’m sick! But most of the time all I want to do is drink tons of tea, no matter how hot or cold it is!

And I am insanely jealous of that cookie dough ice cream! I need to find that asap! That dairy free ice cream will help me hit my cravings too!

Lauren October 4, 2011 at 6:46 am

I always want ice cream when I’m sick. (hence the emergency cookie dough ice cream stop this afternoon! :)

Erica @ For the Sake of Cake October 4, 2011 at 8:03 am

It all depends. Most times, my appetite stays the same when I get sick unless I’m REALLY sick to the point where I just sleep all day. Then I can go without eating!

Hope @ With A Side Of Hope October 4, 2011 at 8:56 am

I hope you start feeling better soon! I am with you on the canned string beans. They are the only canned vegetable that I like too. Although, I do like fresh string beans as well as long as they are roasted. :)

Lindsay October 4, 2011 at 10:17 am

I LOVE your nail polish color! So fitting for fall. Hope you feel better soon!

Lauren October 4, 2011 at 7:55 pm

Thanks Lindsay! It’s part of the new Esse fall collection.

Alyse October 4, 2011 at 10:20 am

Canned green beans are better than the real thing! Have to agree with you there.

I usually don’t get hungry when I’m sick. I want to eat but I can’t bear to. I know I’m on the mend when I start craving fat, though. :-)

Chelcie @ Chelcie's Food Files October 4, 2011 at 12:31 pm

Food is always the best medicine! That spaghetti squash recipe looks so good I can’t wait to try it!

Lauren October 4, 2011 at 7:54 pm

Hope you enjoy it!

Tessa @ Amazing Asset October 4, 2011 at 1:21 pm

Aww Lauren I hope you feel better! Can I just say how lovely and healthy your eats look? I know that’s an odd thing to say, but everything just looks wonderful!

Lauren October 4, 2011 at 7:54 pm

Thanks Tessa! That’s not odd, that’s so sweet. ;)

Alaina October 4, 2011 at 7:35 pm

That sauce looks amazing; something that my roommate and I would LOVE! I’ve never had spaghetti squash as a substitute for spaghetti either. Time to try new things!

Feel better soon!! :-)

Lauren October 4, 2011 at 7:54 pm

It’s great! Much sweeter than pasta and definitely has a different texture but I love it.

Danica @ It's Progression Not Perfection October 5, 2011 at 2:56 pm

When I’m sick (unless it’s the stomach flu of course), I always have a bigger appetite. I don’t know if it’s real or if it’s just in my head, but I always find that certain foods make me feel better.

Hillary [Nutrition Nut on the Run] October 8, 2011 at 12:19 pm

cherry apricot almond butter bar…recipe!?

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