Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Final Words

It's My Birthday

What does it mean to eat without consuming sugar? Eating without sugar is all about making better choices, not necessarily eliminating sugar entirely. I feel that in these three short weeks I have learned quite a bit about the lifestyle and the choices you make trying to eat no sugar entirely. The American lifestyle is not at all conducive to sugar free living. Nearly all prepared foods contain sugar to some degree. The implications are deep. Good luck eating out. All you get to eat are raw foods. How many restaurants serve raw foods? Almost none, unless it's a salad. And if you happen to just want one of those raw foods salads, you can't have any salad dressing. Na ah. Almost all of the commercially available restaurant chosen dressings contain sugar. For taste, right?

So restaurants are out. So are common snack foods. Candy. Energy bars. Drinks. Etc. Sugar. Sugar. And Sugar.

Eating without sugar forces you to eat better. To cook your own food and stay away from the junk and the candy. What a wonderful trade off!

But still...

I don't think I can give up ice cream. And I like eating out now and then. I already make better choices. Not that pie, but the baked chicken. Do you know what I mean?

It is all about our choices. What we choose day to day that makes up our lifestyle and dietary choices. Fad diets don't work, so waiting to eat the cheesecake and candy until next week isn't going to help you. You have to constantly be on top of your cravings. I think it's okay to eat the occasional sugared treat but not every day or throughout the day. Sugar is a metabolism inhibitor.

What I've gotten out of this experience is: Everything in moderation. Medicine is not except from checking the ingredients (inactive ingredients) label. Check everything on that label! Costco has embraced alternative foods and has some great choices for prepared foods made healthier.

After drastically (not that I was eating so much sugar before but there is a difference) reducing my sugar intake I have noticed that other foods can be sweet. Milk is sweet to me. Bread (without sugar) is sweet to me. Fruits can be substituted as a dessert because they are so sweet and delicious.

Happy 24th birthday to me. I'm off to eat a gourmet locally crafted cake from My Cakes in Snoqualmie. I'll let you know how it tastes.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Making Your Own Meals = Control Over What You Eat

My mother has a wonderful recipe for lemon chicken that I adore. For my 19th birthday, I believe, I asked my mom to make the lemon chicken with brown rice and a salad. She makes the absolute best chicken.
 I tried to replicate the recipe with 70% success. It was a bit too lemon-acidic but still delicious. The basic recipe calls for lots of lemons. Got to use the real lemons or it won't taste like real lemon chicken. First you dip all the chicken in egg to coat and then rub the pieces in bread crumbs.
Cook the chicken in oil until it's all the way done and then add in the lemons. Pick out the seeds as much as possible. Add some pepper for seasoning and let it simmer in the sauce and... Done. Lovely. Cook up some rice and you've got a meal!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Costco Finds: Veggie Patty

Sometimes you can find some wonderful ready-made foods at your local Costco! I found this gem whilst loading up on samples at Costco. So many snacks are sugar-free and delicious. These veggie patties taste fabulous, like condensed Chinese food or solidified soup or a potato patty. Yum. At just over $1 apiece this was a steal! Just look at that ingredients list. Mm Mm good.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Breakfast: Sausage and Eggs to defeat the convenience cravings

Simple foods that can be healthy meals:

Here is a breakfast combo I enjoy that is delicious and sugar free! 

I combine my favorite sugar free Costco sausages with some over-easy eggs sprinkled with pepper, garlic powder, and red pepper flakes. It took about 10 minutes to make and made my stomach quite the happy camper. 

The trick to beating the sugar is to keep eating before you get desperate hungry. When you get so hungry you can't wait to eat, then you are in trouble for any self-resistance of nasty foods. You could keep those bad for you foods out of your house or if that's not possible, focus on rounded meals that satisfy cravings for good food while taking <10 minutes to create. This is one of them!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Making my Own Bread

Bread usually contains sugar. Yup, look at the back. Right there. How hard would it be for them to use honey instead? Way hard apparently. Let's look for sugar-free bread, shall we? Whoa, apparently easier than I had thought. There are many choices.

However, I'm still hard-headed about this. I'm making my own bread!

I used the 100% whole wheat recipe in the breadmachine's recipe book but substituted almond milk for dried milk and honey for molasses. I also used a combo of whole wheat flour, spelt, and almond flour, adding in chia seeds, hemp hearts, and flax seeds.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Sugar-Free Cookies

Starting with a base of this recipe from Nestle Tollhouse I made some delicious cookie variations that were not only fabulous but semi-healthy. 

My first foray off the recipe was with the flour. I don't want bleached white flour. Ugh, it may taste delicious but it doesn't do much for me. So instead, I combined some of my healthier substitutes. I used 1 cup regular bleached white flour, 1/3 cup wheat flour, 1/3 cup almond flour, and 1/3 cup spelt.

Further deviating I used my vegan butter, Earth Balance instead of regular butter.

For sweetness I used 1 cup of honey and for good measure 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (not sure what prompted me to add almond milk but I didn't want to put in too much honey and felt like 1 cup was more appropriate than 1/5 cups).

Then I went even more nuts (get it?)

I made peanut butter cookies with peanut butter and nuts cookies
I made unsweetened raspberry jam cookies (pictured above)
I made jam and nuts cookies(also pictured above)
I made pineapple cookies
I made applesauce cookies
I made bacon cookies
I made chocolate chip cookies
I made plain cookies

The jam and nuts, pineapple, and applesauce cookies did not fare well as they were too liquidized to properly rise so I don't recommend adding liquid to these cookies if you were to follow my harebrained recipe substitutions. Also, for sugar-free cookies you must find sugar free-bacon, chocolate chips, and peanut butter as mine were not and I made them for others

Would I make cookies like this again? YES! But I wouldn't add the almond milk or any other liquid ingredients. 

They were delicious, they there were more like shortbread in consistency than cookies. 

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Dinner: Simple Foods

What have you been eating Rachel?

Answer: Lots of broccoli

Costco FTW and their huge family sized bag of broccolie