Diet confusion

It’s been at least 2 years maybe longer since I started transforming our diets. Since we’ve been eating more whole foods and less sugar that has eliminated A LOT of the baking that used to happen here. Sometimes I miss it and sometimes the kids rebel when I’m not home and attempt to whip up cookies by borrowing ingredients from the neighbors.

The newest change to our diets is the elimination of gluten. I had not embraced the gluten free lifestyle previously, I didn’t think gluten was a major contributor to our diets and I didn’t think that anyone had problems with it. I’m still learning about this way of eating and trying to figure out all the hidden sources of gluten, which is not quite as easy as you would think. One thing I have learned by cleaning out my kitchen we really did have way more gluten products than I thought.

I did attempt a similar diet when Beth was first diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease, we tried to follow the Specific Carbohydrate Diet which pretty much eliminates all gluten, most dairy and all sugar and I can’t remember what all else. I wasn’t quite as kitchen savvy back then and most of the foods turned out pretty yucky and with Beth being young and sick she just refused to eat anything. So after a bit we gave up that diet. If I had known then what I know now that diet would have been so much easier to integrate into our lives.

Now I am looking at a gluten free diet again but for Dan. He has always had GI problems and we have often joked that Beth’s Crohn’s must have come from him. After years of testing, many drugs and nothing that has really helped I decided it was time to dramatically change his diet and see if that could make a difference. So step 1 remove all the gluten.

Oh my, as 2 pretty intelligent and very food savvy people you wouldn’t think this would be so difficult for us. I’ll get texts from Dan while he’s at work, I’m starving what can I eat. Me, umm i don’t know meat, fruit, veggies. Him nope, I don’t have any of that, can I eat mini-wheat’s? Me, umm seriously it says wheat right in the name.

So after telling Dan we were going to do this and him having  a complete break down about what he’s allowed to eat, I decided now would be a good time to go to the grocery store for some supplies. The shopping epiphany came to me while I was at Thomas’ dance class which gave me exactly 20 min to shop in a grocery store I’ve never shopped in before, looking for things that i have never bought before. I was completely overwhelmed, I did find the Bob’s Red Mill section of the store and I just started throwing things in my cart because the time was ticking away: GF flour, GF pizza dough, GF pancake mix (never mind that Dan doesn’t usually eat pancakes,) GF cake mixes (hmm haven’t baked a cake in years, I did put the white cake mix back onto the shelf) GF brownie mixes (ditto, but I did leave the store with 2 of these.) I don’t know what happened to me, I went GF crazy! On my drive back to the dance class I  thought what the heck am I doing? We’re supposed to not be eating processed sugary foods. Hmm…

OK time to breathe, I can do this. I have lots of GF and raw food blogs that I follow. I also put a ton of GF books on hold at the library. I know lots of people that eat this way without filling up on sugary processed foods. But still those brownie mixes will come in handy when we’re going somewhere that we should bring a dessert  and I want something quick and easy to make.

I think this is going to be quite an adventure. I just hope Dan see’s some significant improvements pretty quickly so he’ll be motivated to stick with it. Eating this way at home is fine and pretty easy it’s when he’s out on the road all day that the challenges occur. And unless he’s noticing some changes it will be easy to spiral back to unhealthy choices.

6 days and only 3 pounds left to go

…until my trip to Seattle, I’ve almost hit my goal. This was just a mini goal along the way to a bigger goal. After Seattle I have 32 days until my trip to North Carolina and if I don’t gain any weight in Seattle then I’ll have another 10 pounds to lose. Then I think I’ll be done with losing weight and I’ll focus just on staying healthy and maintaining my weight. These smaller goals do help so the whole process is not too overwhelming.

What I ate yesterday:

Hot lemon toddy (hot water with ½ lemon juiced and a dash of ginger & cinnamon)

Breakfast (8:30): Fruit smoothie (1 cup frozen strawberries/ blueberries, 8oz cran/water, 1 scoop whey protein powder vanilla, 1 Tbls ground flax, 1 Tbls chia seeds, 2 kale leaves, 1 Tbls cacao powder)

Then I went on a couple field trips with the kids which left me starving so I ate a Luna Bar (protein bar) that Beth had brought along.

Lunch (2:00): Salad topped with fresh salsa, tuna fish mixed with canola mayo, and dressing (Dijon mustard, flax oil, apple cider vinegar & dill ) CLA & GLA supplement

Walked for about an hour

Snack (6:45): apple

Dinner (8:00): Salad topped with fresh salsa & steamed broccoli plus flax oil and apple cider vinegar

Walked for about 30 min

Snack (9:30): 1 apple & a cacao/ peanut butter cookie

Before bed: CLA & GLA supplement

*I’m drinking my 64oz of cran/ water throughout the day until the pitcher is empty in the evening.

This morning’s weigh in: I lost 1 more pound, total weight loss 12 pounds, yeah!

Black Bean Soup

I miss beans; they’re not on the Fat Flush Plan so it’s been a long time since I’ve eaten any. I made *Black Bean Soup for dinner last night and I didn’t plan on eating any but it smelled too yummy for me to resist. It just seemed silly not to eat something that I know is healthy. While I’m still trying to lose weight I have been following the plan more strictly, but my long term goals are to be really healthy, as healthy as I can be. I think that this diet plan is the basis for a very healthy way to eat. By eliminating sugar, dairy, most wheat and anything artificial, I believe that’s the healthiest I can be. I know that sometimes I will eat some of those items but it won’t be a part of my regular daily choices.

Again here is a summary of the things to avoid on the 2 week Fat Flush Plan (the lifelong plan does have a few additions)

No herbs or spices except for those fat flushing herbs and spices outlined in The Fat Flush Plan
No margarine
No alcohol
No sugar
No oils or fats except flaxseed oil
No grains, bread, cereal or starchy vegetables such as beans, potatoes, corn, parsnips, carrots, peas, pumpkin, or acorn or butternut squash
No dairy products

As I was scanning through the blogs that I follow I came across an article about spices and how they can make foods even healthier and counteract some of the negative impacts that foods may cause. The interesting thing was that the spices they recommend using are the same spices that are recommended on the Fat Flush Plan. Read more at Nutrition Talk, and here’s a link to the blog I wrote about the seasoning recommended on the diet.

And here’s my random thought for the day, should kids be given more freedom to play out in their communities without adults hovering over them constantly? Read some other ideas about this at Free Range Kids and in an article titled, “How children lost the right to roam in for generations.”

Here’s what I ate yesterday:

Hot lemon toddy (hot water with ½ lemon juiced and a dash of ginger & cinnamon)

Breakfast (9:40): Fruit smoothie (1 cup frozen strawberries/ blueberries, 8oz cran/water, 1 scoop whey protein powder vanilla, 1 Tbls ground flax, 1 Tbls chia seeds, frozen chunk of kale, 1 Tbls cacao) CLA & GLA supplement

Lunch (12:30): Big salad topped with my fresh salsa, cucumbers and a dressing (made with flax oil, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, Dijon mustard & dill) plus a side of smoked salmon & a hardboiled egg, CLA supplement

Walked with friends for about 45 min

Snack (4:30): small cup of Black Bean Soup and a couple homemade candied walnuts (sweetened with just a tiny bit of maple syrup) CLA & GLA supplement

Walked for about an hour during Thomas’ soccer practice

Dinner (8:00): Black Bean Soup and pineapple, CLA & GLA supplement

*I’m drinking 64oz of cran/ water throughout the day until the pitcher is empty in the evening.

This morning’s weigh in: I lost 1.5 pounds, total weight loss 11 pounds

*Recipe for Black Bean Soup (I loosely followed the recipe in Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon)

2 chopped & sautéed onions (in olive oil)

About 5-6 cups of cooked black beans (I had cooked them 10 min. in the pressure cooker instead of soaking)

About 2 cups homemade leftover beef stock

4 cloves of garlic

1 teas cumin

1 teas dried oregano

1 quart of our canned tomatoes (from last year’s garden)

1 pkg of our dried tomatoes (from last year’s garden)

1 pkg of our frozen sweet peppers (from last year’s garden)

I also added some of the fat flushing herbs: cinnamon and turmeric

Plus sea salt when the beans were all done cooking

I just dumped everything in the crock pot and let it cook for several hours on low

***oops it just occurred to me last night that I left off the final step for this soup; I scooped out about 1/3 of the soup and blended it in the blender, then poured it back in to make the soup nice and thick.

Chipotle for homeschoolers, yum

The Chipotle by our house was honoring homeschoolers yesterday by offering buy 1 get 1 free day. Some of our homeschooling friends met at our house and we all walked over to Chipotle for lunch. I ended up getting one of their salads topped with chicken and fresh salsa. It was just OK, I wasn’t crazy about the chicken (I usually don’t eat meat in restaurants so I’ve only ever had their vegetarian burritos) and it wasn’t nearly as satisfying as a burrito or even the bol that has rice and beans. I miss rice and beans. But the kids were really happy with their burritos and Dan was happy that there was dinner for him. We try to go to my parent’s house once a week for dinner on those nights Dan is on his own for dinner, sometimes there’s leftovers but sometimes not, last night there was Chipotle for him.

Ann and I went for our walk yesterday in the very cold and misty weather. Luckily it didn’t start raining again until we were almost home. But it was cold enough that I needed a hat and gloves, brrr. I’m listening to another thought provoking podcast, Unparenting by Sarah Parent (what an ironic last name.) I’m sure the topic isn’t for everyone but it does make you think about the way you interact with your children. One quote that I liked is, “unparenting is not permissive parenting.”

Here’s what I ate yesterday:

Hot lemon toddy (hot water with ½ lemon juiced and a dash of ginger & cinnamon)

Walked with Ann for 30 min

Lunch (1:00): Chipotle salad topped with chicken, fresh salsa, medium salsa and a few peppers & onions. I also added a little flax oil. CLA & GLA supplement

Walked with friends for about 60 min

Dinner (5:30): Big salad topped with my fresh salsa, cucumbers and flax oil & apple cider vinegar plus a side of steamed salmon. CLA & GLA supplement

Snack (8:30): apple, CLA supplement

Before bed: ground psyillium husks with cran/water

*I’m drinking my 64oz of cran/ water throughout the day until the pitcher is empty in the evening.

This morning’s weigh in: I stayed the same, total weight loss 9.5 pounds

I seem to not lose weight when I don’t eat as much as I’m supposed to. I haven’t been eating the eggs and yesterday I didn’t have my fruit smoothie. When I skip those things my weight tends to stay the same. So today I’m going to be careful about eating everything that I’m supposed to eat and see if that makes a difference.

It was kinda a crappy day…

Yesterday was a grouchy day. It didn’t start that way the kids and I were meeting some friends at Franklin Park so the kids could play in the creek and in the small waterfalls. It’s so pretty and I was really excited to take some awesome pictures. While we were eating our picnic lunch I tried to take a picture of cute Ros next to a pretty flowering tree and my very nice 15 month old camera wouldn’t work. It had done this same thing the day before but then it had started working again so I thought it was a fluke. But nope, it simply wasn’t going to let me take any pictures. I was so sad, I could have gotten the best pics of the kids at the water. Plus I’m just past the warranty and I have to mail it in for service which STARTS at $200 and there’s no way we’ll have it back in time for our trip to Seattle. So even though it was Earth Day and we were at a beautiful park, my day was sliding downhill.

Thankfully I had planned ahead enough to have a roast in the crock pot for shredded BBQ beef sandwiches for dinner, so when we got home from the park I had 30 min to defat, debone and shred the beef and chop & wash the Romaine lettuce for the Caesar salads. Then it was off to dance class for 2 hours. When we got home at about 7 I was feeling frazzled and I needed to still make the Caesar salad dressing and steam the asparagus and salmon. But first I checked my email only to find that one of the kids had overdrawn their checking account by a couple dollars so I had to deal with that before they had any fees added to the account. Of course, when I tried to log on to the bank web site my password got blocked so I had to call customer service , then my phone died while I was on hold so I had to start over. By this time I was in a crappy mood. I did manage to finally take care of the bank account, get dinner on the table (the Caesar salad was rockin’!) but I was still feeling grouchy. So after dinner Dan and I took Ann for a walk to Jeni’s Ice Cream and we split a dish of: Riesling Poached Pear, Brown Butter Almond Brittle, Buckeye State and Kona Stout. It really only sounds like a lot. J They’re each actually a half scoop so you get to experience more flavors. I only had a couple small bites of each while Dan ate the rest. That did brighten my mood a bit!

Here’s what I ate yesterday:

Hot lemon toddy (hot water with ½ lemon juiced and a dash of ginger & cinnamon)

Walked for 30 min but I couldn’t listen to my podcast because my head phones quit working (ahh… the start to my crappy day)

Breakfast (10:30): Fruit smoothie (1 cup frozen cherries, 8oz cran/water, 1 scoop whey protein powder vanilla, 1 Tbls ground flax, 1 Tbls chia seeds, frozen chunk of kale, 1 Tbls cacao) CLA & GLA supplements

Picnic Lunch (1:00) leftover Chicken stir-fry with hot sauce, CLA

Glass of Kombucha, yum, raspberry flavored my favorite!

Snack (4:00): Orange Julius- simply 1 peeled orange, ice and a little water blended until smooth. This was very refreshing and yummy!

Dinner (7:45): * Caesar Salad, couple bites steamed salmon, asparagus with a squirt of lemon and a little sea salt; CLA & GLA supplements

Walked to Jeni’s ice cream and a few bites, yum!

Before bed: 1 cup of cran/water mixed with ground psyllium husks

*I’m drinking my 64oz of cran/ water throughout the day until the pitcher is empty in the evening.

This morning’s weigh in: I lost .5 pound, which puts my total weight loss at 10 pounds. So something good did come out of that crappy day!

* Homemade Caesar Salad Dressing:

put in blender

4 anchovies

juice from 1/2 lemon

1 egg

2-3 cloves of garlic

Blend

then slowly drizzle in 1/3 C flax oil, while the blender is running

A, not so exciting, day in my life

Yesterday was a long day driving Beth to and from work, bringing Daniel his Magic Cards to campus and all my grocery shopping. First I walked to giant Eagle, then after dropping Beth off at work I had an errand to run up at Easton, so while I was up there I went to Sam’s Club, then I finished up at Whole Foods; but you can read all about it here. I don’t normally go to 3 grocery stores in 1 day but I had a free day and I wasn’t sure when I would have the time to shop again, so I decided to get it all done at once.

That pretty much took up the whole day. Dan and I did go for a walk in the morning before he left for work and we did get to do a little gardening after dinner. The garden is looking pretty dismal so far this spring since Dan has been spending all of his non work time doing construction at his friend’s new restaurant. But it will hopefully end soon!

Here’s what I ate and did yesterday:

Walked with Ann & Dan for 30 min and

Breakfast (9:00): Fruit smoothie (1 cup frozen cherries, 8oz cran/water, 1 scoop whey protein powder vanilla, 1 Tbls ground flax, 1 Tbls chia seeds, frozen chunk of kale, 1 Tbls cacao)

Walked to grocery store

snack (11:45): dish of leftover cauliflower with apple cider vinegar, lemon juice and kelp, a carrot that Beth decided she couldn’t eat (braces) and CLA & GLA supplements

dropped Beth off at work and ran errands then went to Sam’s Club

Lunch (3:00) no bake cookie, Salad with Bubbies Kraut and leftover coleslaw plus a dressing made from; Dijon mustard, flax oil, apple cider vinegar & dill; Smoked salmon

Shopping at Whole Foods

Glass of Kombucha, yum, raspberry flavored my favorite!

Brought Daniel his Magic Cards on campus

Picked Beth up from work

Dinner (7:00): Chicken stir-fry with broccoli, snap peas, carrots, mushrooms and onions. Mine didn’t have any sauce on it but I did add a sauce and lo-mein noodles to everyone else’s.

Worked in garden

Dessert (8:30): apple & a glass of wine

Before bed: 1 cup of cran/water mixed with ground psyllium husks

*I’m drinking my 64oz of cran/ water throughout the day until the pitcher is empty in the evening.

This morning’s weigh in: I lost .5 pound, which puts my total weight loss at 9.5 pounds. And I had to change my pants yesterday morning because the ones I was wearing were just too loose so I got to wear a pair of capris that I had not been fitting into! That’s really exciting!

Back on track with the diet

Even though my food choices were not 100% what the plan recommends I still lost 1.5 pounds yesterday, yeah! 1 more pound and I’ll have lost 10 pounds since the beginning of this journey 1 month ago. I got lots of walking in yesterday and 1 full minute on the re-bounder, I know pretty lame but it was better that the day before. Baby steps! I’m again out of all my fresh veggies so I’m to the store today to stock up on all the yummies. Salad mix, spinach, lemons, whatever veggies are looking good and are on sale, plus I’ll get pineapples and bananas for the other people in the house. I also want to pick up some salmon and chicken at whole foods, I’ve almost eaten all of Dan’s fish that he caught that’s been in the freezer. Good thing fishing season is starting up again. He’s going on 2 fishing trips while were in Seattle for about a week total. So we’ll hopefully be restocking the freezer with some Halibut. (Actually I don’t know what they’re fishing for, is it Halibut season in WA?)

Here’s what I ate yesterday:

Hot lemon toddy (hot water with ½ lemon juiced and a dash of ginger & cinnamon)

Walked with Ann for 30 min and listened to another podcast by the same author as the last one, Sarah Parent. For anyone that watched the segment on Discovery health about radical Parenting, her family was featured as the Radical Unschoolers. While the show was not great her podcasts really are. Anyway I was listening to Living a Positive Life which you can download for free on iTunes. And 1 whole min on the re-bounder.

CLA & GLA with cran/water

Breakfast (10:00): Fruit smoothie (1 cup frozen strawberries, 8oz cran/water, 1 scoop whey protein powder vanilla, 1 Tbls ground flax, 1 Tbls chia seeds, frozen chunk of kale, 1 Tbls cacao)

Lunch (1:00): Salad with Bubbies Kraut and leftover coleslaw plus a dressing made from; Dijon mustard, flax oil, apple cider vinegar & dill. I also had 2 deviled eggs made with 1 Tbls canola mayo

Snack (4:30): 1 healthy chocolate no-bake cookie, these are so yummy! My friend Janine came up with recipe (see below.) This is not on the diet but a have a container of them left over from the weekend so I’ll probably splurge and have 1 a day.

Walked for about 50 min while the kids were at ceramics

Walked again for about 45 min while Thomas was at soccer

Dinner (7:30): same salad that I had for lunch and steamed cauliflower (CLA & GLA)

Dessert (8:30): 1 cup cantaloupe

Before bed: 1 cup of cran/water mixed with ground psyllium husks

*I’m drinking my 64oz of cran/ water throughout the day until the pitcher is empty in the evening.

This morning’s weigh in: I lost 1.5 pound, yeah! Which puts my total weight loss at 9 pounds.

Healthy Chocolate No-Bake’s

Dump everything in the food processor

2 cups oats (you could substitute this with other nuts if you don’t want to use oats)

½ cup walnuts

½ cup flax meal

½ cup cacao (this time I used ¼ c cacao & ¼ c carob, you can also use unsweetened cocoa powder if that’s all you have)

½ cup shredded coconut

1 tea vanilla

¾ cup peanut butter

Start blending everything together

Drizzle in while food processor is running ¾ cup maple syrup

Then I roll the batter into balls, flatten like a cookie and dehydrate at 115 for 1 hours to just dry them out a little bit. You could also put them in the over at the lowest temp for about 15 min. Or you can just eat them “raw” they are so yummy! And this recipe is very flexible, if there is something you want to change go ahead and substitute something else or just leave it out.