Friday, October 19, 2012

Low Carb Friends is out of control!

  I had been a member of LCF for some time now, at least since I started my journey with low carb back in March of 2011. I was excited to have found a place that generated so much useful information and support.

  After a few months, the policies there kept getting more strict as time went by.  I understand that they are sponsored by Netrition, which is a great site to buy specialty products, I have ordered from them before also. But lately, you can't say anything on the LCF site without getting slapped for it, even when you ARE following the rules.

  The reason I am talking about this is because I have recommended this site to several people before and need to update and forewarn everyone to use caution when joining this site in the future. Make sure you are reading the policy updates and be careful when posting information about any product, company, etc. Obviously, anything that is in competition with their sponsor is off limits- and I understand that, but it's gone beyond that now. 

  I am no longer a supporter for that site and have removed myself from posting or even visiting there because of their ridiculous handling and prying into posts and PMs. I don't want to be treated as a child and looking over my shoulder constantly.  I am not trying to completely bash LCF in this but truth be told, it just isn't the same and that's such a shame.

  There are still a lot of sites to receive plenty of support and information from. One of my faves is Jamie's Your Lighter Side, it has a mixture of different groups with all ranges of eating plans on there and tons of people who are willing to help out with advice and support. Jamie is witty and smart and shows such a sense of humor that captivates all her readers and friends.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

My new fave breakfast.

This has been my breakfast of choice for the last week and it reminds me a little of cream of wheat (but without the wheat). The recipe can be found at the LCF website and it's called CJ's Breakfast Pudding. I have been playing with the berries on top (wasn't included in the recipe) and so far have used strawberries, blueberries and raspberries. This keeps me full until lunch time but doesn't make me feel "heavy."

It's low in carbs and calories. I would love to be able to enjoy oatmeal or cream of wheat but those items really do a number on my body chemistry so this is my sub to fulfill that craving of mine.

Primal Tex-Mex Tortillas and Taco Seasoning

I've been looking into the Primal/Paleo realm lately and came across this recipe during my search. It's also LC and a great option for those who would like to stay away from the processed Tortillas. You can find the recipe at Mark's Daily Apple, and while you're there why not browse through some of the information he has on his page, it's very insightful. There are lots of good recipes also, which I plan to try out in the near future.

I used beef cubes in mine and this is a keeper in my recipe file. I used Bob's Red Mill Coconut Flour for my tortillas and the carb count came to 1.5g Net per tortilla. Then add whatever toppings you prefer, but remember to also add the carb count for each of those items (if LC is your plan of choice).

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Weekly Menu 4/30/12- 5/5/12

Mon. 4/30:
Breakfast: 1 cup of Coffee w/1 Tbsp. SF Hazelnut Creamer + 2 Fried Eggs + 2 Strips of Bacon
Lunch: Mini Cheese Tostada Bowl w/Beef Cubes topped with Fiesta Ranch Dip
Snack: 2 Strips of Bacon + Diet Root Beer
Dinner: Atkins Meatloaf + Creamy Squash Casserole
Snack: SF Jello Cup

Tues. 5/1:
Breakfast: 1 cup of Coffee w/1 Tbsp. SF Hazelnut Creamer + 2 Deviled Eggs + 2 Fiber Gummies
Snack: 2 Strips of Bacon
Lunch: Leftover Creamy Squash Casserole + 2 1/2 Deviled Eggs
Snack: Diet Root Beer + String Cheese Stick
Dinner: Chile Mustard Pork Chops + Loaded Broccoli
Snack: SF Jello Cup

Wed. 5/2:
Breakfast: 1 cup coffee w/2 Splenda pkts + 1 Tbsp SF Vanilla Creamer + Griddle Cake Sandwich + 2 Fiber Gummies
Lunch: 1 cup broccoli w/butter and garlic + BBQ Pork Rinds dipped in Fiesta Ranch
Snack: 2 Strips of Bacon + 3 SF Candies (bad idea on the candies)
Dinner: Parmesan Chicken + Green Beans w/Mushrooms and Bacon
Snack: SF Jello Cup

Thurs. 5/3:
Breakfast: Salsa Sausage Quiche + 1 cup coffee w/1 pkt Splenda, 1 Tbsp CO, 1 Tbsp HWC and 1 Tbsp SF Vanilla Torani Syrup
Snack: 2 Strips of Bacon
Lunch: Leftover Parmesan Chicken + Green Beans w/Mushrooms and Bacon
Dinner: Tuna Lettuce Wraps + Cucumber Salad
Snack: Chocolate Cream Cheese Muffins x2

Fri. 5/4: 
Breakfast: Salsa Sausage Quiche + 1 cup coffee w/1 pkt Splenda, 1 Tbsp CO, 1 Tbsp HWC and 1 Tbsp SF Hazelnut Torani Syrup
Lunch: Leftover Parmesan Chicken + Cucumber Salad
Snack: Vanilla Coke Zero
Dinner: Tuna Lettuce Wrap (it was a "use leftovers" night)
Snack: Chocolate Cream Cheese Muffins x2

Sat. 5/5:
Breakfast: Salsa Sausage Quiche + 1 cup coffee w/1 pkt Splenda, 1 Tbsp CO, 1 Tbsp HWC and 1 Tbsp SF Caramel Torani Syrup
Lunch: 2 Cheddar Brats (no buns)
Snack: Diet Pepsi
Dinner: Pollock Fillet topped with Ranch and Parmesan Cheese + Salad w/Cheese, Bacon & Pepita Cilantro Dressing
Snack: Chocolate Cream Cheese Muffins x2

Monday, May 7, 2012

It's up to US to teach our kids.

   When I began my LC journey I wasn't sure if I should get my kids involved quite so soon. I believe in what I practice and follow every day, but to try and get them to understand something that may be beyond their comprehension can be overwhelming. 

  They've noticed the changes in dinner, have asked questions about why we don't eat potatoes (or other certain items) anymore at home, and they have even started reading nutrition labels at times. My oldest, who is 11, has made comments in her class about the LC ways (quite proud of her), she probably understands it best out of my 3 girls. (The other two are 7 and 4 yrs. old....can't blame them). We have discussions about what we are eating sometimes, especially if i make a new recipe, and they seem to like my new cooking better than the old....bonus!! 

  Slowly, I have substituted items in our house for a lower carb and lower sugar option: oatmeal,  jello, snack bars, ice creams, etc. I try to find a sub for anything I can possibly manage to make myself or buy a better option for. They still have the occasional items of high carb indulgence but I limit them more these days. On one hand I believe I should be teaching them what I believe to be a healthier way of life, but I have to let them be individuals and make their own choices in life too. 

  I can't rely on the school system to teach my kids what a daily healthy meal looks like or they give them this:   

  Now, I would like to think that, no matter what diet/way of healthy lifestyle you live and preach by, that no one would ever think that taking in 6 servings of GRAINS a day would be healthier than only consuming 5 servings total a day of fruit and veggies combined?!?!  Someone must have made a typo or is off their rocker. I can see people bickering and declaring their beliefs on the other portions, but unprocessed, grown from the Earth NATURAL fruits and vegetables are less important than grains...I call B.S.!!

  I do realize that my kids have been paying attention, at least my older ones are, the youngest shows she is getting the basic idea but says silly things like "you can't have chips because they make you fat." (Close enough, for now) I giggle and smile when I see them reading those labels and I am surprised that they attempt to retain the information I pass to them and think about it with "that look." 

  I'm not going to change the world, it is not my intent to preach to people about how they eat. But if you ask, I may give you a piece of my mind (in a good way...I'm not a B----H) to a certain extent. I am certainly going to try and educate my children to be aware of these things, but when they are out of my hands I cannot control what they decide to matter what. I know I don't always follow my plan to T, we all slip and crave and binge at times...that's a whole other issue. 

  You live, you learn, you teach!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

15 Tips For a More Enjoyable LC Lifestyle

1. Even if you didn't like it before, try it again while eating low carb. I never was one to eat spicy foods, they were too much for my liking, now I cannot get enough. I also would only eat one kind of lettuce, now I have noticed I actually like different kinds of lettuces/salad leaves. Things sometimes taste differently to me now that I am not eating all that crap I used to. I didn't care for diet soda before, my kids didn't either, but we have become accustomed to the taste and regular soda is too much for me now. My husband swears he hates zucchini, but I have made it MANY times, in so many different ways and he now devours it. Things change, give it a chance, it's good for you.

2. Eat slower. I know you are probably starving by the time you reach your next meal, but by savoring each bite, not only do you get to taste your food better, it actually makes you feel like you're eating more. Plus, it gives your brain time to catch up to your stomach so you will notice that full feeling before it's too late. I sometimes cut my food into smaller pieces so make it last longer. It sounds silly, but it works for me.

3. Drink LOTS of water. I am not the best at doing this. I love water, but I get bored sometimes and need some flavor, not to mention, I NEED caffeine. My rule to myself is : if I drink a can/bottle of diet soda, I add another 8 oz. of water on top of my regular 64 oz./day.  I try to never drink anything but water during meals and find that it helps fill me up more. Plus, it's good for you, especially here in the hot desert  summers.

4. Track your intake. There are many sites online now, and apps on phones that allow us to personal track eat item we are putting in our bodies each day. I personally use and occasionally I will use Each of these have an app you can download for FREE on your phone and the sites are 100% free also. I have tried to do without and failed, it holds me accountable for what I am consuming throughout the day, and since I am such an organized neat freak, I like that I can print out of history.

5. Be prepared. I know it's hard to think of what to make for dinner each night, life is chaotic enough, but by planning your menus ahead of time, it's one less thing to worry about and you have less of a chance at grabbing for something on the "no no list." I plan my menus for 2 weeks out (sometimes even the entire month), using an excel spreadsheet, then I make a grocery list from that. I also print out any recipes I need (I used to write them on index cards when I didn't have a printer) or search through one of my binders with recipes I have printed out already and sort them in a folder. One week on the left, the other on the right. Each day, all I have to do is look on the menu and pull out the corresponding recipes, defrost my meat and marinate if needed and I am good till it's time to cook. If I am out and about, running errands, I make sure I already have a place in mind I can stop at to get an acceptable meal (by using my app) or if I know I simply won't have time, I do opt to pack a small cooler/lunchbox with things like tuna & mayo, string cheese, an Atkins shake, cucumber slices, pork rinds, etc. If I go too long and get super hungry, that's when I panic and want to eat the first thing I see.

6. Find ways to recreate your old time favorites. There are some truly talented and gifted people in this world that have come up with the most amazing low carb creations based on our old favorites. A lot of those people are listed on my favorite sites section and more are coming out of the woodwork every day. Do your research and search online to find healthier recipes to replace the ones you miss the most. Sometimes you can find a simple recipe and sub a few things in there and improve it to your liking very easily. This has REALLY saved me from feeling deprived from the things I used to love.

7. Proportion items to make them easily accessible. One of my weaknesses are nuts, especially the cocoa or toffee flavored almonds. Now, those things are 6g of carbs per 1 oz. serving...YIKES! So while I wait until I move out of induction, I bought snack sized Ziploc baggies and portioned those into individual serving bags so I know just how many I can eat, otherwise I will eat 1/2 the bag in a night...maybe the entire bag. Makes you think twice about whether that 6g is worth it at the moment also.

8. Make sure you have proper equipment. My kitchen scale is one of my best friends. I really should just leave it on my counter top instead of my cupboard, that's how much I use it. It's important to pay attention to your serving sizes on the nutrition labels, things add up pretty quickly. I may have mentioned this before, but Linda Sue has a list of favorite gadgets that she finds useful during her lc'ing. I have visited that link many of times, while adding some of those gadgets on my "remember to buy" list. It will make your prepping and preparing experience a whole lot easier.

9. Know your options while eating out. Don't be afraid to ask if you can sub french fries or potato sides for a veggie instead. I personally do not care to eat at most fast food restaurants bc I feel like I am wasting my money paying for the same meal as any other and throwing away the bun on the burger, I'd much rather order a large salad or stop at a place like Applebees where I can order a big juicy steak and get my monies worth. There are some places that will wrap your burgers in lettuce, which is cool, but I like to have a side, so side salad it is. You should be aware that the ketchup they serve at these places usually are pretty high in carbs, so I will ask for no ketchup and instead get mayo. I don't eat out very often, but most places I have been to have been more than happy to accommodate you as best as they can. Conveniently, they have nutrition menus on the tables most times, or you can ask for one or look it up online or on your phone. You'd be surprised at how many things have added carbs, in the sauces and sometimes even their meats. Make it worth it to you and most importantly enjoyable.

10. Don't look at it as a "diet." This is what has separated this eating plan from all the others in my days. If you have read the books and done your research you probably have already been assured that this is the way we should be eating on a normal basis. I've NEVER looked at it as a diet, it's the way I was meant to eat to be healthy in the first place but never knew. I think the reason why so many people brush this eating off is because they are misinformed about the lifestyle and science behind the plan. When my mother first tried introducing me to low carb I brushed it off as another fad diet, it wasn't until I did my research, that I actually had that light bulb go off in my head and knew what I had to do. It's not all about eating eggs and meat all day (though you can do that if you prefer), it's about consuming the healthy amount of carbs for your body and cutting out all the processed junk, regardless of what plan you are on....that is KEY.

11. Get your family involved. I am the cook in my household, so basically I have control of what we eat most of the time. I cannot force my family to eat things, but when I make a meal, you either eat it or go hungry. I am not a restaurant, I will make one meal and that's that. It's not really difficult to get them to eat my meals, because they aren't THAT different from what I used to make. I grew up learning to make a protein (meat), usually a starchy side and then a veggie side for dinners. No wonder why I was fat, that's a lot of food. I now cut out the starchy side dish and make sure I have a meat and veggie in my meals. I honestly think my kids eat more of my food now than they ever have before. The point is, you can't control what they consume while they are away from the home, at a friend's house, etc. But I do influence and teach them better eating in my household. They ask questions all the time and make statements about things discussed in school that they've challenged because they are aware of the issues now. It makes me proud that they are understanding the dangers of sugars and processed foods, and though they still love some of that, they are more able to recognize the good versus the bad. I have not cut everything out for them completely, but I have found some reasonably good substitutes for the old high carb items they used to eat.

12. Don't grocery shop while you're hungry. This has been stated over and over again by so many (even ones who are not on a low carb lifestyle). I notice I tend to grab for those "extras" when I am hungry and shopping, if you need to save money on groceries...follow this rule.

13. One mess up doesn't have to turn into a full on binge. You've gone days, weeks, months, years without eating any bad carb items....but one day you trip up. At this moment, YOU get to decide on whether to go on a full on binge for hours, days, etc. or you can dust yourself off and start back where you left off. In my experience, the longer I am on a binge, the harder it is to get myself back in the game. Everyone makes mistakes and we are going to have our moments, try not to let one mistake ruin your journey.

14. Stock up on handy items. I usually have string cheese, Atkins shakes, cream cheese muffins, nuts, celery sticks, SF Jello, bacon strips, sausage links and other items handy in case I need a quick bite here or there. I definitely have a sweet tooth and crave chocolate often. In order to keep from from grabbing something bad to eat, I make sure I have something around to satisfy my craving when needed. Find what that is and have it ready for emergencies.

15. You don't have to eat a "normal" breakfast, lunch or dinner. A lot of LC'ers love to eat typically dinner type foods for breakfast instead of the usual eggs and bacon or omelet. That's what works for them. I generally stick to eating a more normal, or traditional, breakfast (that's just me). But I have always loved having breakfast for dinner, even before my LC days. Maybe one of those will work for you too and prevent boredom during mealtime.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

My Stats...take 2.

Back in November of 2011, I pretty much fell off the wagon. I thought I could continue to eat right without tracking my daily intake and it just didn't work for me. I kept trying to start over (still by not tracking) but each time I would fall into the same trap. I am now back to induction, tracking my food again, and ready to stay on for good.

Start date- 4/30/12
Starting weight: 163.4 lbs.

Arms: 12.5" 
Thighs: 23.5" 
Waist: 39" 
Chest: 37" 
Hips: 43.25"

Week 1: (5/7/12): 158.8 (-4.6 lbs.)
Week 2: (5/14/12):