Oct 4, 2010

This looks crazy but its sooo good!

I've always liked Celery Peanut Butter Roll Ups but I ran out of celery
 so I improvised a bit and found a new low carb favorite!
It's sweet and crunchy and soooo good!

Low Carb Tortilla
Peanut Butter
Chocolate Peanut Butter (optional)
Walnuts (you can use any nuts)
Lettuce (or celery)





Aug 16, 2010

Fried Cheese Rollups:Breadstick Substitute


Brian has FINALLY jumped on the low carb train! Whoot whoot! He's not completely sugar free but he's cut back on sugar a lot. He's lost 12 lb. in only a few weeks. I've been doing really well lately with it, but having Brian on board, really keeps me on the low carb creative edge instead of sticking to my low carb favorites and same ole things.

We've been doing these simple cheese rollups as a substitute for breadsticks. I just like to snack on them!

What you Need
Cheese (shredded-not sliced american)
-I used a fiesta blend
Skillet
Parmesan (optional)

What you Do
1. Spray a bit of Pam in a frying pan and put as much shredded cheese in the frying pan as you want.
-A thin layer is best (easier to roll up, easier on the stomach)

As the cheese is melting and bubbling, add some parmesan (or even italian spices)


3. When the sides of the "cheese omelte" (thats what it looks like) are hard and you are able to run a spatula under the whole thing, check the underside. How do you like your fried cheese? Lightly toasted or a little burnt and crispy? Up to you. I like it to be a little browned.

4. Lift the flat cheese with a spatula and put on a papertowel. Start rolling immediately (it will be very hot and hard to roll but if you wait till it cools too much you won't be able to roll it without breaking it)

And thats it!

Tip
-The reason I say you may only want a thin cheese rollup is because too much fried cheese is tough on your stomach. Don't get a bellyache. Plus, a thin one is easier to handle.

-Here's a secret
You can make a sweet rollup too! Find the least flavorful cheese (I use provolone) and do the same thing with it. BUT instead of adding parmesan---add cinnamon, or some sugar free syrup, or some splenda (or a splenda cinnamon mix)  Its yummy!


Apr 24, 2010

Surviving your SFLC Lifestyle While Dining Out!



Dining out can still be enjoyable on the SFLC plan! With a little preparation, you can enjoy many many of the things you did before the SFLC plan!



CHIPS AND SALSA/CHEESE DIP
If you think because you are SFLC that you'll never be able to get chips and salsa or cheese dip from a restraunt again, YOU'RE WRONG!

SUPER EASY HOMEMADE TORTILLA CHIPS

WHAT YOU NEED
low carb tortillas(get the new Low Carb Flour Tortillas!)
A bit of oil (olive oil works best)

Take your low carb torilla and cut it into chip size triangles. I use a pizza cutter and they come out perfectly! Then, lightly coat each tortilla triangle with oil. Arrange on cookie sheet and bake at 375 until lightly browned and totally crispy!

These are hearty chips and can withstand chunky salsa and thick cheese dip! They keep in baggies for a week and sometimes longer. When you know your going to a restaraunt, grab a bag and take along!This may sound silly to do, but once you've done this you'll appreciate taking this extra step so you can survive the restraunt without caving in...and who wants to be left out of chips and salsa time? NOT ME!

BRING LOW CARB TORTILLAS WITH YOU!
Go ahead and order that wrap you love! Just remove the tortilla it came with and replace it with your own.

Love fajitas? Sure you can eat the fajitas without the tortillas but you DON'T HAVE to! Bring a few low carb toritillas and enjoy fajitas the way they were meant to be!

BRING YOUR OWN DRESSINGS!
Avoid sugary, carb ridden dressings on salads and wraps by packing a small container of your own SF&LC dressing. Ask for your order with no dressing and then dress it up with your own!


AVOID
BBQ Sauces and sweet oriental dressings.

If you enjoy a ceasar salad, the dressing is fine but ask for it without croutons. If they aren't there, you aren't going to cheat right!?


SUBSTITUTIONS
This should go without saying, but don't forget to replace fries, baked potatoes, or breaded veggies with a low carb alternative! Nowadays, they have many yummy veggie sides that are a great substitute for the other carbby stuff. If your not a BIG plain veggie fan, ask that they put cheese on it for you! I ALWAYS ask for my veggies smothered in cheese and have yet for someone to say "Sorry, we can't do that."

I've also asked for crumbled bacon to top the veggies off. Most of the time I pay extra for this, but it's worth it for me to feel like i'm not missing out on the fun of eating out. I'm still TREATING myself!


HAMBURGERS
If you are a burger lover (and I soooo am) I have found that you can still VERY much enjoy that burger without a bun! I call it a hamburger salad!

Order your burger with everything you like on it (well, except for onion rings of course) and avoid the burgers with the tangy sauces. (stick to good ole mayo and mustard. Sorry,ketchup has lots of sugar) and don't forget that you can now get flavored mayos..hot and spicy, garlic and herb, southwestern, etc.) Bring your own for a new "kick" to your burger!

chop the burger and all the fixins up and you will have a plate FULL of a nice burger salad! Trust me...this is a suuuuper yummy way to enjoy your burger!


DRINKS
Yes, I know this sounds silly, but I LOVE diet Dr. Pepper and they don't often offer this at a restaurant, so I sometimes bring my own! OR, i'll carry a those very convenient Crystal Light packages in my purse and just order water to make my own drink. IF i'm feeling very creative i'll ask for a water with lemon (some extra as well) and use splenda (which I always carry) and make my own lemonade! Of course, you can always just order any diet soda, or water.


OTHER TIPS
*ORDER unbreaded fish and meats (grilled is best) and absolutely no DEEP FRIED ANYTHING!
*Avoid corn, carrots, and beans (a small portion of black beans are ok. This is because black beans are very fiberous)


ORDER CONFIDENTLY
Restaurants are used to special orders. If your not sure about something ask! You might think about adopting the attitude of someone with a medical condition who just can’t eat certain things. You may be surprised at how accommodating the chef can be.


OK, after reading this you may be thinking that i'm crazy! If you see me dining out you may wonder if the reason I carry a HUGE purse is because i'm carrying LC HOMEMADE TORTILLA CHIPS, EXTRA TORTILLAS, SALAD DRESSINGS, AND A CAN OF DIET DR. PEPPER...well, thats not totally true...I just love big purses! But yes, often times I am packin some or ALL of those things! I'll tell you what though, it seriously does make for a much more enjoyable dinner to have the things I love and know that i'm sticking to my SFLC plan!


HOPE THIS HELPS!

Apr 14, 2010

My Recent Favorites

TADA! This is my super new favorite! Sugar Free Sweet Tea! I grew up in the south and sweet tea is a staple..a must have! However, around here, making sweet tea usually involves several cups of sugar! Since i've went sugar free i've not had any tea at all! It was very sad lol! I just don't like unsweetened tea. BUT, I was at Walmart the other day and found sugar free sweet tea! The carb count is 0! I was skeptical, but had to try it. Well I am not disappointed AT ALL! So, this is really the ONLY thing i've been drinking over the past several days because i'm just so in heaven being able to drink sweet tea!






Bacon Cheeseburger Salad. I LOVE HAMBURGERS! At home though, we don't do beef anymore...we've switched to turkey which is an amazingly healthy alternative to beef and tastes really great in all recipes. So this salad is super simple and if you love a good hamburger you'll love this too..sans bun of course, but you won't even care after you taste this!


I just fried some turkey meat (of course you can use hamburger if youd like), then put it in a big bowl and added slices of bacon cheddar cheese (this is new and i'm lovin this also!) then melted it together in the microwave. Then I just added all my favorite hamburger toppings (lettuce, mayo, onion, pickles) and thats it! Its so easy and super yummy!

This new cheese is awesome!




Garlic and herb chicken and spinach salad. This is an easy recipe. I took drained canned chicken and added some of that new GARLIC AND HERB MAYO (which i'm so digging right now!), threw in some chopped spinach leaves and presto! This was a really nice lunch salad! Very flavorful!



Hot and Spicy wrap! I eat a LOT of wraps using low carb tortillas, and so i'm always coming up with new wrap ideas and things to put together in them. Since I eat so many, I like to stay creative with it. This is one of my very favorite creations! If you like spicy I definately reccommend trying this!

I took deli chicken and chopped it up. Then laid chipoltle cheddar cheese slices on top of my LC tortilla along with lots of pepperoni slices and added the chopped chicken on top. I nuked that in the microwave more about a minute and then transferred the tortilla into a frying pan until it was perfectly crispy. I then added some of that new HOT AND SPICY SANDWHICH SHOP MAYO, along with some shredded lettuce and folded the tortilla over into a half circle and cut into two slices. Aaaaamazing! (notice the sweet tea!?) lol LOVIN IT!


I've also done the same recipe but added spinach leaves instead of shredded lettuce! Spinach is so good for you and its a nice way to incorporate some iron into your diet!
Actually, I incorporate spinach leaves into at least one of my meals every day.



I reccommend trying these new flavored mayos by KRAFT. NO CARBS!



Crab, avocado, and bacon omelette from MiMi's Cafe. This was like heavenly good! It came with potatoes which of course my hubby was happy to eat. It was an amazing low carb breakfast!


If you want to make this at home, I have found this recipe:
http://www.goodbite.com/recipes/crab-and-avocado-omelette-shauna


HAPPY SFLCARBBING! YOU CAN DO IT!

Recommened Sites to Help You in Your Sugar Free/Low Carb Journey

After more than a year being sugar free/low carb, I have become quite creative in my recipe ideas and cooking strategies, however, without the internet i'd be completely lost when it comes to converting many of my old "sugar favorites" to SUGAR FREE FAVORITES! I also just like to keep things interesting and not stick to my ole faithful recipes all the time. You would not believe how many of your favorite meals can be converted to sugar free/low carb! You'd also be suprised at how many amazing and delicious meals you can cook for your family without them noticing or even CARING that you've created a healthy sugar free/low carb meal!

I'd like to share with you some of my favorite sites to look for great recipes, ideas, and sugar free/low carb products!
most of these sites are low carb help sites. This is because going sugar free is pretty straight forward and simple...JUST DONT EAT refined and processed SUGAR! However, its the low carb part that can get tricky and thats where you may need some extra help.



http://www.lowcarbluxury.com/lowcarb-recipes.html
This site has TRULY low carb recipes and a convenient online store for many of the hard to find ingredients that some of their recipes call for!


http://www.sugarfreesheila.com/
This site was created by a woman named Sheila who went sugar free/low carb and lost 35 lbs in 5 mo. She went from a size 10/12 to a size 0! She has kept it off for 8 years now and offers lots of motivation, ideas, etc. to help you along the way! You can even call or text her for help (seriously i've done it!) She's an amazing person and her testimony will inspire you! I suggest ordering her self published cookbooks. I have 2 of them and they are a great help!

http://www.lowcarb.ca/
This is a cool site because you can view the lastest low carb news, get tips, view other's success stories, browse recipes, and theres also some nifty low carb diet tools like a "Hidden Carbs Inspector" and a handy Carb Counter.


http://lowcarbeating.com/
A site I love because it has great recipes, a forum to interact with other low carbbers, and low carb help topics such as motivation, cheating, hidden carbs, health issues, etc.


http://www.happy2beme.com/
This is a cool website run by a woman who is on a no flour/no sugar diet. She has some great recipes, articles, a forum, and a very handy search tool to look for sugar free/no flour recipes by type of ingredients or meal your after. NOTE* not all of these recipes are low carb even though they are sugar free! So check all of the ingredients first. For example: She has a recipe for a sugar free banana split BUT bananas themselves are VERY sugary fruits. So just look out out for that kind of thing when browsing recipes.


http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/
One of my most faaaavorite sites for low carb all around support! Read other low carb dieters stories, see before and after pics, lots of recipes, low carb product reviews, and even a chat room


http://forum.lowcarber.org/
An amazing GO-TO forum to converse with other low carbers. These people share their success stories and most awesomely, their recipes! Just people like me who get creative with their low carb diets and discover great ways to cook low carb...then they share that with everyone else! You'll find awesome support here!


http://www.netrition.com/
THE BEST SITE to order your hard to find sugar free/ low carb ingredients! I absolutely love this site! You'll find tons of other goodies on this site too and will probably spend a good amount of time just browsing the neat health items they have!

Mar 24, 2010

BEFORE AND almost AFTER

So, I am so excited to be 12 lbs away from reaching my goal of 135 lbs. I started this journey at 200 lbs. A little over a year later I am so close! In pre-celebration style, I decided to chronicalize my weight loss with picutres! I will be honest. NO ONE has seen some of these pictures, and I really thought no one ever would. I am ok with showing them now because of how far I have come. Its been a tough road, but looking at these pictures makes me feel triumphant! Going sugar free/low carb is the best thing I have ever done for my body.




Months Before getting pregnant- Weight 136ish





During Pregnancy: Got up to 220 lbs! I hurt all over. I hardly recognized myself.

This was taken at 25 weeks preggo. I had gained so much by then! :(

About 32 weeks. THE ONLY PREGNANCY PHOTO ANYONE EVER SAW. Why? Because you couldnt see the rest of my body!






This was taken a few weeks before I delivered. I had almost reached 220 at this point. I was absolutely miserable. I can hardly bare to look at this picture now. Seriously, click on it...make it bigger. Can you see what gaining 80 lbs does to a person!? I don't even look like myself!






This picture was taken at Thanksgiving 2008--5 mo. after having Lawson.
 I weighed a little over 200 lbs. NOT HAPPY





This picture was taken at Christmas: 200 lbs. I absolutely hated myself and tried to hide for every photo. This was the only picture taken where I wasn't hiding my face. This is the month I decided to start the SUGAR FREE LOW CARB DIET! I wanted a new life...actually, I just wanted my old self back.


This was taken in May of 2009. 5 months into going sugar free! I had lost about 25-30 lbs. Still not happy with my weight but 25 lbs felt lifechanging already!



By the following Christmas I had lost almost 15 more lbs! This put me at the 155 mark I think.




Currently I am 147. My goal weight is a happy 135..which is pre baby weight! No, my body will NEVER look the same as before but I CAN lose the last 12 lbs! I have come this far and I will accomplish what I set out to do by going sugar free! This has changed my life! Not only have I lost an amazing amount of weight but I have found a way to feel better and be healthier!





Join me in my sugar free/low carb lifestyle!

Mar 16, 2010

My latest Favorites

Mock Pancakes or "Egg Pancakes"



Recipe here:
http://www.ehow.com/how_4862793_sugar-low-carb-mock-pancakes.html
Or see the recipes at the right side of the page

If you don't low carb baking mix (which I keep meaning to order from Netrition.com) you can make mock pancakes using eggs as the base. These are actually pretty good and very simple to make! Top it off with some sugar free syrup!


LC Apple Vanilla Honey Nut Chicken Salad



Recipe here
http://www.ehow.com/how_5975459_make-honey-nut-chicken-salad_.html
Or see the recipes at the right side of the page

This chicken salad is amazing! I totally made it up one day while craving something sweet and my husband was craving chicken salad. Low carbbers and non low carbbers alike can enjoy this! I'm all about convenience so I use canned chicken, but by all means use fresh chicken if you want! I eat it plain, straight from the bowl after its been chilled, my hubby likes it wrapped in a fresh croissant.


Omelette Muffins


These are super easy to make. They are such a great LC breakfast, especially for on the go people! Make a batch on Sunday and you'll have a pop in the microwave quick breakfast or snack all week! They keep in the fridge for about 5 days.

I make a dozen, mix about 10 eggs, and a cup of heavy cream together, along with any omelette fixins you like. I use cheese and bacon bits (bacon bits bc of the convenience). Bake them at 350 until just a bit brown on top (or do the knife test.) You dont want to overcook these! Tada! Thats it! Bag 'em and save em if you'd like!




Cracker Pizza


I LOVE pizza, and because I don't eat it on LC, I frequently come up with alternatives to the taste. For a quick super simple snack with that pizza taste I so crave, I took a WASA cracker (which has 6-8 carbs depending on which kind you get..the more fiber the better!) and some mozzarella ( I actually used a mozzarella cheese stick!) and some pepperoni slices, put it together and baked it until the cheese was melted. You can do this in the mircowave but the cracker wont stay as crispy. TASTES YUUUMMMY!




MORE RECENT FAVES



Fiber One Yogurt
Each contains 8 net carbs and 4 sugar. I don't eat one everyday, but they are great as a treat! Plus, when you are doing low carb you really need those good sources of fiber. Its very important. So this is perfect for that and feels like your cheating!
PS-The key lime pie flavor is amazing! Seriously tastes like your eating KLP!



Edy's Fruit Bars
Each contains 5 net carbs and 1 sugar. I love these! They don't taste as sugar free as some of the other brands i've tried. I'll admit that I usually do one of these a day. Its a low carb treat at the end of my day :) Raspberry is my fave :)


Shaw's Crab Cakes
Ive already eaten these and so I don't have the box, and I can't find the nutritional info on the internet for some reason, but I do know they have 9 carbs. Only 4 come in a box, so I spaced them out during the week. I'd have one for lunch one day, with a side of veggies, and do the same thing on a different day, but for dinner. They are really really good! I'm sure I can make these myself, using LC bread, but I just haven't gotten around to trying. Until then, Shaw's it is!

Feb 23, 2010

Recent Favorites

Sorry I haven't posted in a while. I've been continuing with my low carb lifestyle, however, lately I haven't gotten very creative with it. I'm a pretty busy person and so sometimes I just stick with what I know I like and whats easy, and thats it. I really need to break out and try lots of different recipes like I used to. I'm going to make that a goal for the weeks to come.

Here are some of my SFLC items that i've been enjoying lately:

WASA Crackers


Each slice contains only 6 net carbs and zero sugar. The ingredients is also very appealing to me because for one, I can actually pronounce everything and I also KNOW what they all are. And secondly, I try my hardest to eat lots of foods made with very little ingredients. This ensures a very natural and healthy diet. Its not always possible of course, but I TRY.

The ingredients are: Whole Grain Rye Flour, Wheat Bran, Sesame Seet, Oat flakes, water, Wheat Germ, Wheat Fiber, Salt.

If your thinking it sounds totally boring and void of taste, your not entirely right, but your not entirely wrong. Yes, they don't have a lot of flavor, but if you are low carbbing and craving a crispy snack or perhaps cheese and crackers, then this is a perfect solution. It's kind of all about what you put on them. I bought some Smuckers sugar free blackberry jelly and spread about 2 tablespoons on one slice for a breakfast treat. These are also great because when you go low carb, you have to be creative about getting adequate amounts of fiber. This is a great way to get more fiber indeed!
I reccommend keeping it to one or two of these crackers a day.



KIKKOMAN Instant Miso Soup



I'm a big fan of Miso soup. This is the seaweed and tofu soup that usually comes as an appetizer before your meal at a Japanese restraunt. Its very flavorful and good for you!
You can buy instant Miso soup at Walmart. It comes in a large packet with 3 individual soup packets included.

0 Sugar and only 3 carbs per packet.

I add extra tofu (extra firm) for a little bit more substance and protein. This makes a great snack or lunch! Sometimes I eat this twice a day! I loooove me some Miso!



Peanut Butter and Celery Wrap



I've always loved peanut butter and celery but somehow this week I got the genius idea to combine it with a low carb tortilla and PRESTO! The PB Celery Wrap was born! Simple, just spread PB on a small LC wrap or half of a large wrap and roll up a piece of celery in it. I'm kind of addicted to these right now. haha!


My Drink Indulgences


I love hot tea and flavored coffee. There are some super luxurious tasting teas out there with 0 sugar and 0 carbs! My favorites right now are Lipton French Vanilla and Lipton Vanilla Caramel Truffle. I usually add one packet of Splenda to each cup of tea. I'm doing a few cups of these a day just because they are so good!

I also love flavored coffee, but until recently, French Vanilla Cafe was the only coffee mix available in Sugar Free. Now they have Suisse Mocha Cafe available in SFD. It is like drinking a cup of chocolate...which to me is absolutely heavenly of course! You can use water, but I use soy milk for a thicker richer taste. If you are still drinking milk however, your consuming more carbs, but 1 cup isn't going to do a lot of damage of course. I usually have a cup of this in the morning and sometimes at night if I get a sweetooth attack and need a guilt free fix.

2g of Carbs per 1 1/3 tablespoon.


Real Bacon Bits (prepackaged)


I'm a bacon lover through and through! I used to cook a couple of batches of bacon a week to use for sandwhiches, scrambled eggs, etc. Well, I don't know why I was doing that! I have now started using prepackaged real bacon bits for those simple put together meals. Its so easy to cook up some cheesy bacon eggs in the morning when I don't have to cook the bacon first! I also add some to my husbands sandwiches, which he really enjoys! And Quesadillas are a sinch and much more flavorful this way.

If you love bacon and want a quick and easy way to add it to your food, I suggest keeping a few packs around!



BREYERS Carb Smart Ice Cream Bars



I usually don't indulge much in processed goodies but sometimes you just have to have some ice cream! I'd go nuts without my little pleasures now and again. Well these are perfect for a guilt free splurge!

Made with Splenda, it only has 5g of sugar per bar and only 7g Net Carbs! I am in love with these! Of course, eat these in moderation as well. One a day or even once every other day (which is what I'm doing) is fine though.


I'll be getting into a more creative cooking spirit this week I'm sure!

STAY SWEET AND SUGAR FREE EVERYONE!

Feb 4, 2010

I challenge you to be sugar free! THE REAL BENEFITS




Here's my challenge:

Go sugar free for 30 days. Eliminate refined sugar from your diet. No breads, flour, potatoes, cookies, candy, cola, etc. Eat only low GI fruits. A huge myth is that if you go low carb, you basically have to become a meataholic. This is so not true. I actually only eat meat probably twice a day. The bulk of my meals are fruits and LOTS of veggies, lean meats,nuts and berries, eggs, cheeses and soy products, and occasionally very low carb/sugar free foods, such as a low carb tortilla, or highly fiberous foods that cancel out the carbohydrates.

Remember...the net carb count is CARBOHYDRATES - THE FIBER. Thats how you find out how many carbs a product has. Another rule of thumb is that typically, if a product is low in carbs-its low in sugar, but it is not always the other way around, so ALWAYS check food labels! I typically don't eat anything that has over 10 grams of carbs in a serving. And I dont eat hardly ANYTHING with processed sugar. I rarely use sugar substitues, unless I am baking, or buy a must use/have product with Splenda in it. For the most part, my diet is "all natural" I guess you could say.

Another important thing to remember and it also makes this lifestyle more appealing, is that when you go low carb and arent consuming sugar, there is no need for low fat. Eat as much butter, sour cream, cream cheese, etc. as you'd like. Your body processes fats at a much faster rate now that you have no sugar in your body. Fat is now its main source of energy and you do not want to deprive your body of that.


How hard will it be to get started? What will my body go through?
In the beginning you will go through some withdrawls. Headaches, fatigue, and very difficult cravings for sugar... This will last anywhere from 2 days to a week. By exercising and drinking lots of water, you can make the process of eliminating the sugar from your body much quicker. DO NOT GIVE UP! Trust me...after the withdrawls are over, you will feel amazing!


INSTANT GRATIFICATION-SOME VERY GOOD NEWS HERE!

After the withdrawls are over and you have successfully rid your body of sugar (yippee!) you will almost immediately begin to notice the benifits to this lifestyle. These benefits will have varying degrees for everyone but most likely you will experience on a very positive level that will keep you very encouraged to continue this lifestyle.

-Your sugar cravings will be drastically reduced. This lifestyle will seem so much more simple when your sweet tooth has been "extracted" haha!

-You will have much less "hunger pains." This is one of my favorite things about being sugar free. I almost never "feel" hungry. When you live on sugar and carbs, your body uses this as your main energy source. When you are running low, your body responds by sending a chemical to your brain that basically acts like the gas light in your car that comes on when your running low on gas. Its telling you..."You need to refuel! I'm running low.. Hurry hurry!" When your body is sugar free, your body's energy source comes from "good sugars" like fruits, proteins, and your fat storages! That is the best part! Your body turns your fat into energy! Yep, its true :) Sounds glorious doesn't it?! The result, is that your body doesn't start freaking out when your hungry. I kid you not, I can go a whole day without "feeling" hungry. I eat because I know I need to, but the urge just isn't there.

-Headaches and fatigue will DRASTICALLY be reduced, and sometimes eliminated. I used to have chronic headaches and migraines. I find, that only RARELY do I ever get a headache anymore, and never once since I have started this lifestyle have I gotten a migraine. This fact alone has been life changing for me. Fatigue was also something I struggled with daily. I used to have so many times during the day that I wanted to take a nap. My engery just seemed to fluctuate so much. This is not so anymore. I still have an internal body clock that causes me to get a little sleepy around 2pm or so, but for the most part, my energy level stays pretty high all day. Without the constant rises and declines in sugar levels in your body, your body is able to cruise at a comfortable level of energy that you will find invigorating!

-Less mood swings and even a clearer, focused, and improved mental state. It might sound like I'm reaching here but this is real. I'm gonna get a little scientific on you. By keeping the sugar levels in your body under control, you are maintaining adequate levels of seratonin, which is a chemical in your brain that affects your moods. Low seratonin levels can cause anxiety, insomnia, fatigue, depression, etc. When your body is low on seratonin it automatically wants to remedy the situation-with sugar. Thats when cravings set in. The problem with using refined sugar as the remedy is that your body uses this energy up very quickly, and then when it's gone..you crash! When you have a firm grip on your blood sugar and your seratonin levels, your body doesn't have these rapid ups and downs caused by sugar, which will result in a more elevated and even keeled mood and improved sense of well being. THIS IS A BENEFIT FOR NOT ONLY YOU BUT FOR EVERYONE AROUND YOU :)


-Rapid weight loss followed by steady weight loss. If you go cold turkey and all together stop eating sugar and carbohydrates, I can almost guarantee you a 10-15 lb weight loss in 2 weeks-without exercise. I said "almost" because yes, this will be different for everyone, but it is super common for this to be the case. Now, you don't want to keep the good sugar from your diet. Fruits and veggies need to be a HUGE part of your diet. After your initial "BIG WEIGHT LOSS" from the good shock that your body has from adjusting to this no sugar lifestyle (by burning up all your sugar and turning on your fat storage as it's new source of engergy) you will then be on a slower steady fat burning process. You may need more exercise at this point, but I am a firm believer in adding exercise into the equation of any "diet" or lifestyle. There are only added benefits by doing so. However, you will keep that steady weight loss going as long as you are sugar free.


-You will actually be a much healthier person. Sugar is so damaging to our bodies. You will be fighting and preventing a slew of diseases, cancers, mental problems, obesity, etc. just by going sugar free. You'll also be consuming much less calories which is an added benefit for your body and your belt size!

-I have noticed a drastic positive change in my skin since going sugar free. There have been studies that have shown that your skin's appearance can improve by going sugar free. I actually did not know this until after I went sugar free, but yes, for me this has been very true. I cannot say whether this will be true for everyone though, but I can almost guarantee you that the opposite will NOT be true.



So, how does my challenge sound? The benefits far outweigh the small and quick satisfaction that you'll have from munching on that donut I promise you- and you won't even crave that donut after a few days! If your one of those people who thinks they could NEVER give up their breads and sodas, and cookies and candy..let me tell you this. You are so wrong. You do NOT love sugar as much as you think you do. Your body is lying to you. Eliminate the sugar-eliminate the craving for it.

Jan 30, 2010

Weekly Eats

So i'm a bit late posting what I ate last week but i've decided to simplify it a bit. I won't be posting each days meals. I'll post the more unique low carb eats, some recipes, and photos.


TUNA MELT


Simple, LC tortilla, tuna, and I think I used a few velveeta slices.



FAJITAS (which I eat about once a week!


Wen't to Chili's with the hubby. This is what I ordered. You can never go wrong with fajitas!-No tortillas of course-I do usually bring my own though but this time I forgot.


BACON MUSHROOM CEASAR SALAD (One of my faves!)


I looove this. I love raw mushrooms so this is perfect for me. Just a handful of raw mushrooms, ceasar dressing, and real bacon bits. Seriously, it is sooo good!



CAJUN CABBAGE



I'm a cabbage fan so I always try to incorporate it into my weekly diet. I made cajun cabbage this week. Chop up a whole head of cabbage. Fill a wok or frying pan with about an inch of standing water along with lots of butter. Put your cabbage in the pan. There will be a huge pile but it will cook down quickly. I added Tony Chachere's cajun spice to it, but just salt and pepper is really good too. Turn the pile every couple minutes till all the cabbage is tender...takes about 15 minutes or so. All done!



CHORRIZO BURRITO-Breakfast




CHIPOLTLE CHICKEN-seriously amazing! And no it's not burnt, thats the seasoning! lol


So my new favorite food product is this new chipoltle cheddar cheese that just came out. It is so good! I love chicken and I frequently stuff chicken breasts with all sorts of ingredients. It's so much more flavorful that way. So I cut a pocket into the chicken and put one slice of cheese in each chicken. Then, I coated my chicken with heavy cream (only because I had no eggs but this works perfectly fine-and also makes for more moist chicken) and then dipped it in dry marinade- Chipoltle Pepper from Grill Mates to be exact. You'll need a few packets to cover 3 or 4 large chicken breasts. I do this quite frequently. Since I can't do breading, I use dry seasoning packets to coat meats like you would breading. It works wonderfully! Bake as usual. When the chicken is done so much of the cheese will have spilled out if you don't put a a few toothpicks to close up the pocket. Thats ok though, just stuff all of it back in-no harm no foul. It is so delish!

Try this dry marinade strategy with lots of flavors and meats. Here's what I've got in my pantry right now.


I'm excited about the mojito lime! I want to marinade some shrimp and chicken in lime juice first then put the coating on there. Yuuummmmers!



I was craving an ice-cream type of thing and didn't have the ingredients for my mock-ice cream so I had to come up with something...and I was quite satisfied with my-

SUGAR FREE/LOW CARB CHOCOLATE VANILLA ICEE


So simple- I just took a handful of ice, a little bit of heavy cream and vanilla soy milk, and Da Vinci's sugar free chocolate syrup. Blenderized it and done! I can't tell you exact measurements bc I just based it on how thick I wanted it, plus it was very experimental, but man it was good!

Jan 20, 2010

Sugar Free/Low Carb Alcoholic Beverages

I have an 80's party to go to this Saturday which i'm LIKE TOTALLY excited for haha! I don't drink very often at all- the occasional party or holiday. Normally, I make an exception to my sugar free/low carb ways for a drink or two (or 4! hehe) at the party. The next day I usually spend extra time on the treadmill and eat more strictly.

I shouldn't have to do this anymore however, because people are finally clueing in to the needs of people like us living SFLC lifestyles!

If you make your own coctails, there are several recipes that cut out the sugar completly, without sacrificing on taste! You'll also be cutting out lots of calories that way too.

Here's a recipe for a Sugar Free Margarita


Ingredients:
•1 jigger (1.5 oz) tequila
•2 Tablespoons (1 oz) lime juice - bottled more convenient, fresh tastes a lot better
•1/4 cup (4 Tablespoons) water
•1/4 teaspoon orange extract
•1 Tablespoon's worth artificial sweetener (try to use liquid, carb-free types)
•Ice - small handful
•Margarita salt or kosher salt
Preparation:
Wet the rim of the glass and dip into a small plate of salt.

Combine all ingredients. You can either serve it over ice (in Mexico I've usually been served it this way, but I can't say I've had extensive experience), or strained into the glass, or blended in a blender.

You can find this recipe and more here:
http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/alcoholicbeveragerecipes/tp/topcocktails.html


If you are a beer drinker there plenty of low carb options for you as well! Remember: NOT ALL LIGHT BEER IS LOW CARB!


Here are the top 10 beer brands with the lowest carb count.

1. Thin Ice 1g 12oz
2. Accel 2.4g 12oz
3. Aspen Edge 2.6g 12oz
4. Bud Select 3.1g 12oz
5. Natural Light 3.2g 12oz
6. Corona Light 5g 12oz (my fave!)
7. Coors Light 5g 12oz
8. Amstel Light 5g 12oz
9. Mikes Light Lemonade 6g 11.2oz
10.Bud light 6.6g 12oz

You can find a comparison chart as well as flavor characteristics here:
http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art14302.asp

So there you have it! You can still stay reasonably low carb if you are well informed about what your low carb options are. I believe it is ok to splurge once in a while on special occasions, but if you can stay low carb and still have a good time, I think thats a better choice! No more guilt the next day!


As always, please drink responsibly and DON'T DRINK AND DRIVE!

Jan 17, 2010

My SFLC Eats of the Week

So I have promised a weekly post about what I ate for the week. This will hopefully give you some ideas about how YOU can eat SFLC as well as demonstrate that I absolutely do not starve in this lifestyle, nor do I only eat meat and cheese. To be honest, for this week I wasn't too good at keeping up with every meal but next week I will write my meals down so I can really give you guys a thorough run through of my week. I also hadn't went grocery shopping for my LC stuff in a while so I wasn't working with much here. Next week there will there will be more variety. I'll be posting pictures of some of the things I eat each week, but most things don't need a "picture" explanation.

To give you an idea of what I'm up against-Here's a look into my familie's pantry.



Do I ever sneak a cookie or two?- no never! Why not? Because once you go No Sugar and get it out of your sytem, any processed sugar you put into your body is going to give you crazy cravings for it and you will likely "relapse" into your sugar eating ways. But mainly, I just know that this works for me, I've lost so much weight, I feel amazing, and
I love myself more than I love that cookie!

Monday

Breakfast: Eggs and turkey sausage

Lunch: BLT salad. Shredded lettuce, real bacon bits, and lots of mayo. No tomato only because I don't really like them, but if you do like them, in small amounts they are perfectly ok to eat.


Dinner: Turkey burger sans bunn and cheesy broccoli. I loaded it up with everything I'd put on my favorite burger (mayo,mustard,onion,pickle,cheese) and wrapped it with several pieces of large leafed romain lettuce hearts. So good!



Tuesday

Breakfast: Cheesy eggs

Lunch: Southwest Chicken Wrap. LC torilla with lettuce, turkey,southwest cheddar cheese, southwest mustard. Heated in a skillet to make the tortilla cripsy. Super delish! and it's huge!


Dinner: 3 hot dogs sans bunn and pork rinds


Wednesday

Breakfast: a huge glass of chocolate soy milk. It is absolutely amazing! Its the lowest carb choc. milk I can find. 1 Net carb per 8 oz. Soy Slender. This stuff really saves me when I have an urging for something sweet. I sometimes go through a carton a day! haha!


Lunch: Chicken ceasar salad sans croutons. I usually bake a few chicken breasts at the beginning of the week so use in salads throughout the week. Ceasar dressing is a low carb acceptable dressing. Yay... Because I love it!

Dinner: Salmon and green beans. I love green beans so I usually eat a whole can (fresh whenever I can but I didn't have any this week). I spread butter and lemon pepper seasoning on the salmon and then wrap it in tin foil. It cooks rather quickly that way. I know this sounds weird but I also love lemon juice on my green beans too!




Thursday

Breakfast: Nothing. I was not feeling well.

Lunch: I ate a leftover turkey burger and a small spinach leaf salad with balsamic vinagrette.

Dinner: Went out to eat and had a bacon cheesburger sans bunn at O'Charleys. I wasn't able to substitute my fries for veggies because I was ordering off of the 2 meals for 14.99 menu which I was pretty disapointed about, but oh well. The burger was very filling. 2 burgers in one day though...eh, oh well.


Friday

Breakfast: Breakfast burrito. LC tortilla with cheesy eggs, bacon, peppers, salsa.

Lunch: Tuna lettuce wrap. Tuna, mayo, diced purple onions, chopped boiled egg, wrapped in a big romain heart lettuce leaf. Had 3 of them actually!

Dinner: Pepperjack chicken (baked chicken breast stuffed with pepperjack cheese) and a big spinach salad with chopped boiled egg , bacon crumbles and balsamic vinagrette.


Saturday
I finally went grocery shopping Friday night so by saturday I could finally get a little more variety going!

Breakfast: Strawberries and blueberries and a dark chocolate LC specialty drink. They are called EAS AdvantEdge Carb Control. They are superduper delish and have only 2 net carbs per drink plus 17 grams of protein! With the strawberries this drink was especially awesome!


Lunch: 2 boiled eggs and BLT spinach wraps. Take a strip of cooked bacon and spread some mayo on it, then wrap the bacon around a bunch of spinach leaves. Really yummy! I make about 10 of them for lunch! haha.

Dinner: Fajitas! One of my favorite LC meals and soo super simple to make. I keep John Souls Chicken and Beef strips in the freezer for quick and easy meals (like this).I just chopped up some red and green peppers and some onions and started sauteing them in some olive oil. Then threw in the chicken and beef (it thaws quickly) and cooked it all together for about 15 minutes in a skillet and DONE. LC tortillas of course. LOTS of sour cream and homemade guacamole. Sooo good!



Sunday

Breakfast: Doin the "get ready for church hussle" so I just downed a LC chocolate drink. With it having so much protein, it keeps you suprisingly full. No disruptive tummy growls at church! whoohoo!

Lunch: We ate at MiMi's cafe. I ordered the quiche lorraine with a side ceasar salad. I only ate the inside of the quiche, not the crust of course.



Dinner: Well my husband felt like testing my temptation resisting abilities and decided to order pizza. haha. Actually, not once did I even think about taking a slice. I instead tried to figure out how to make something that could fulfill my pizza craving, what I came up with totally worked!

I took a LC tortilla and spread about 2 T. of spaghetti sauce on it. Loaded it up with mozzarella cheese and topped it with pepperoni. Heated it in a skillet for a few minutes to get it all melted and then folded it over and sliced it into triangles and TADA..my pizza craving got its fix for sure! This will definately be repeated!




Here are some of the things I snacked on this week:
Pork rinds, pistachios, slim jims, celery and peanut butter, small lettuce wraps with deli meat, vienna sausages, berries, string cheese, orange and yellow bell pepper slices, cottage cheese.


So there you have it. I wasn't able to get too creative this week due to my lack of LC groceries, but hopefully you can see that I can get a pretty good variety going even with the lack of options. Like I said before, with a little creativity you will NEVER feel like you are sacrificing while living SFLC!

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