Tag Archives: gluten

My Diet: The Mystery Revealed

I got a message from a friend last night. She has been gluten-free for a while now but is still having gastrointestinal problems. Most of my friends know how crazy sensitive my stomach is and how much I have to do (and not do) to tame it. So voila! A page just for that. Check out the panel just above this post for “My Diet.” Or click on this link.

Feel free to ask any questions or let me know if you think something I said was wrong.

I hope you’re all having wonderful days! It’s important to keep that smile on right now, after the Holidays. Maybe if you fake it for a while, you will convince others AND yourself that it’s real 🙂

Thursday Recipe: Build-a-Salad

 

*to those interested, birthday update at the bottom of the page

Whenever I mention healthy eating, people’s automatic reaction is, “I hate salad.” Let me share something, me too. The typical restaurant salad is cold, unsavory, and wholly unsatisfying. But I’ve recently determined that they’re doing it wrong. As I’ve mentioned before, my current lifestyle goal is only eating grain for lunch and restricting carbs at dinner. This is not to lose weight but to prevent a haphazard insulin spike right before bed. So “salads” have become my go to dinner options and I’ve realized, they’re not all that bad!

To build a great salad just replace whatever carb you were going to use (pasta, rice, potatoes, etc) with dark leafy greens (I prefer spinach). This means that you get the healthy without sacrificing the hot and savory.

Recently, in the vain of cooking a big portion of one thing, I made cooked a big batch of lentils and steamed some extra veggies I had lying in my fridge. Here is the result:

^ Start with the leafy green base. Don’t worry, it will be covered up soon.

^ Add whatever warm veggies you decided to cook. I have zucchini, red bell peppers, and eggplant.

^ Pile on whatever protein you want. I made lentils but you could do any kind of meat or legume.

^ Top it off with a healthy fat like goat or sheep cheese (pretty much lactose free) and some oil based dressing like balsamic or italian. And enjoy!

* Final note: My birthday ended up being quite wonderful. My coworkers remembered and even gave me gifts. I got so much love through this blog and facebook and texting and phone calls. AND Mike came home from his business trip early! He surprised me at work with flowers, a bottle of wine, and a Gap coat that I’ve been eyeing for months. What wonderful people I have in my life. Thanks everyone 🙂

Today, just smile.

 

Braving a World of Junk Food: Packing a Lunch

As I last posted, I’ve been working the Morton Pumpkin Fest for the last several days. If any of you know of the festival, you know it’s full of some seriously delicious junk food; including but not limited to: pumpkin donuts, pumpkin pie, pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin funnel cake. Everything delicious, in pumpkin flavor!! It’s my own personal temptation hell.

However, it’s so important to learn how to brave these situations and so that you can join the rest of your community celebrating awesome things like Fall!

Some Tips:

1. Choose one thing to treat yourself to and wait until the end of your trip to do it. The buildup will make sure you don’t violate your own rule.

2. Make sure, before you leave the house, that you eat a big, healthy meal. Being full means you’ll be less tempted by anything other than your planned treat.

3. Bring some snacks! This is where dinner leftovers make things quick and easy.

 

Here was mine for an 8 hour shift at the fridge:

– Sandwich – gluten-free bread, sunflower butter, and blackberry jam we found at the farmers market.

– Smoothie – coconut water, 1 banana, handful of frozen fruit, handful spinach, scoop of protein.

– Salad – whatever is in your fridge. Mine was tomatoes, spinach, pinto beans from the chili last week, and humus.

Tools that make it easy:

– Resealable container like a Tupperware.

– Blender bottle for the smoothie. It’s not only easy to drink out of but it has a little spring ball that you keep in the liquid and when you’re ready to eat you just shake it all up.

– Lunch box/ bag keeps things cold or hot and easy to carry.

^ My handy dandy lunch box.

I was full and happy with my lunch and this morning, as a treat for resisting for 5 days, I had a giant pancake breakfast!

Enjoy your Sundays. Don’t forget to smile!

Low Grain, High Protein, Gluten Free Breakfast!

Low Grain, High Protein, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Sugar Free, and Raw. I realize it sounds pretty gross but I’m telling you, this “granola” is DELICIOUS. When I’m not home to cook, this is what Mike has for dinner. Haha.

I started making this stuff when I started my new goal of less grain/carbs for breakfast and dinner and much higher protein. Granola is my #1 choice for breakfast but I can be kind of picky. That’s why I was so surprised that it is SO GOOD. It’s a twist on another recipe from the awesome book in this post.

Ingredients:

1 cup pepitas, aka pumpkin seeds (they’re really high in protein and so yummy)

1 cup raw sunflower seeds

1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes

1/2 cup brown rice protein, OPTIONAL

1 tsp cinnamon

3/4 cup raw almonds, slivered or sliced

3/4 cup raw walnuts, in pieces

1 cup dried fruit such as raisins or cranberries, or a mix!

1/2 cup GF oats

Instructions:

Grind up pepitas, sunflower seeds, and coconut. I use a tiny food processor I got at Goodwill. You could do it in a blender though, or just leave everything whole. Pour all that into a gallon ziploc bag. Add all other ingredients. Shake it all up. Scoop out 1/2 to 1 cup, pour some almond or coconut milk over it. Enjoy!

This is possibly the easiest all-at-once breakfast I’ve ever made. It takes about 10 minutes to make a batch to last 2 or 3 weeks. And, because it’s so high in protein, it keeps me full for hours.

Another tip, keep the granola in the gallon bag with a 1/2 cup measuring cup in there. This way you can ration your supply saving you money and preventing over indulgence.

 

Smiles are contagious, plant one right on your kisser and keep it there all day 🙂

Recipe: Big Ole Pot O’ [healthy] Chili

Sorry for the late post today. I was cooking all day and wanted to post a recipe of something cool. And I made chili!

I mistakenly bought dry pinto beans instead of canned ones so that added an extra 5 hours onto the hour and a half taken to actually prepare the chili. BUY CANNED PINTO BEANS.

This recipe is from my favorite nutrition book, check it out here. It’s a scientific breakdown of your body and the nutrients it needs and doesn’t get in the modern american diet. Anyway, here’s the recipe. It’s really simple and takes a tiny bit of prep time and some serious simmer time. But it’s SOOOO delicious and SOOOOO healthy.

Prepping dried pinto beans (if you don’t want to spend the time just buy canned ones):

^ Sort the beans to pick out any rocks or cracked beans, then rinse them.

 

^ Fill pot with water 3″ above the beans. Boil then cover and simmer for 1 hour. Drain them.

Fill pot with water 1″ above the beans. Boil then cover and simmer for 4 hours. Check every hour to make sure there is still water.

Drain and they’re finally ready!

Ingredients (serves 8-10 < but they’ll want more than one serving):

2 Tbsp coconut oil

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup chopped celery

4 cloves minced garlic

2 cups chopped green pepper

4 cups pinto, black, or kidney beans

4 tsp oregano

4 tsp chili powder

4 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp sea salt

2 8 ounce cans crushed tomatoes (get organic if you can!)

1.5 to 3 pounds of organic ground chicken or turkey or grass-fed ground beef

Instructions:

Heat oil in large pot and saute onions, celery, garlic, and peppers until onion is translucent, 3-4 minutes. Add meat, chili powder, and cumin, continue cooking, stirring frequently, for 5-6 minutes. Pour salt and tomatoes into pot. Cover and reduce heat to simmer for at least one hour. I finished cooking earlier than I expected so I just kept the simmer going and it got even more delicious.

^ nom nom nom.

If you try it, let me know how it goes!

 

Recipe Thursday: Quinoa Scramble

I am definitely not the healthiest person I know but I am towards the top of the list. One of the ways I make sure that I never fall back into bad habits is that I’m always working on something. Always taking baby steps.

My current baby step: more carbs for lunch, less for dinner. The theory is that I will actually use the energy they give me if I eat them for lunch but at night, they just sit in my stomach, converting to sugar then fat.

So I cooked this recipe to take to work for lunch and I had a salad for dinner! My dessert plate had some sugar in it but that’s the next step I’ll be embarking on.

This recipe is awesome because it has some grain but it’s also full of protein, nutrients from the produce, and good fat. *note: the less you cook the vegetables in the beginning, the more nutrients stay in them. Its gluten-free, dairy free, and sugar-free (yet tasty?). And it’s so QUICK AND EASY!

Quinoa Scramble Ingredients:

high heat oil like sunflower or coconut oil

produce that was 24 hours from going bad (my fridge had handful spinach, 1/4 onion, 1/2 tomato)

3 eggs

1/4 cup almond or coconut milk

quinoa (bought these cool ready-made packages at the grocery store)

salt and pepper

Cooking Instructions:

^ Preheat the skillet on medium heat, grease with high heat oil. Add chopped produce and saute until only slightly crunchy (my spinach had wilted).

^ While its cooking scramble the eggs with the milk.

^ and prep the quinoa in Tupperwear so you can take it with you.

^ Add the eggs to the pan and scramble them all up. Cook until the eggs are done.

^ and plate it! Sprinkle with some salt and pepper then cover it immediately to keep moisture and heat in. If you put it in an insulated lunch bag like I have, you shouldn’t need to reheat it.

Enjoy!

Leftover Mashup

A couple of nights ago I had a fridge full of leftovers and not very much time. I’ve started cooking extras when I make dinner then just pop them in the fridge for meals later. It’s awesome until you find yourself with just a little bit of everything, so I made a leftover mashup!

I always keep tomato sauce (with no added sugar) on hand for occasions like this.

So I had leftover: brown rice, lentils, and chicken (from the roast earlier this week).

I added: tomato sauce, and broccoli I bought on Sunday at the farmers market.

Because I’m doing no more microwaves: I put the rice in a pot with a 1/3 cup of water (it hydrates the dried rice) then covered and put it in the oven at 200°F for about 15 minutes. Stir frequently so rice doesn’t stick to the bottom.

^ I can’t find my good camera so pictures are a little grainy until I have some extra time to find it.

Then I cooked the broccoli, chicken, lentils, and tomato sauce on medium until it was warm enough to eat. It’s ok if the broccoli is a little crunchy, the less the heat it, the more nutrients it retains.

Then just pour the sauce over the rice and add some grated parmesan or pecorino (it’s sheep’s milk so there’s very little lactose in it) over the top and enjoy! In the words of Mike,”MMMMMMMMMmmm….”

Don’t forget to smile! They’re contagious.