Just Say No Mas to the Bad Mexican Food Choices

My husband and I went to Poquito Mas tonight and ate low-carb. We had tostadas, but without beans and rice-and we did not eat the shell or the chips. The tostada eaten this way should be under 10g of carbs.

However, there were a lot of larger people eating differently than we were eating. Burritos with rice and beans, chips, etc.

Let’s look at this way, if you want to lose or maintain your weight, you have to count carbs. Between 50 to 100g of carbs per day does the trick.

If I eat 6 protein meals a day and keep my count between those numbers, I am fine. However, what about what those other people are eating?

Chips: add on another 20 to 30 g of carbs.
Beans: add on another 20 to 30 g of carbs.
Rice: add on another 20 to 30g of carbs.
The burrito shell: add on another 30g of carbs.
Taco shell: add on 15g of carbs.

There are nutrition calculators online to check for accuracy. But. Can you see how easy it is to gain weight?

You have to educate yourself and make better choices. Fillers like rice, chips and flour and corn products will bulk you up fast. You could end up eating over 109g of carbs in just one meal! And the meatless vegetarian stuff is even more carbolicious.

Stick with protein, salad and veggies. This means meat, cheese, vegetables, salad, avocado (good carb, but watch the amount), sour cream. A few beans are ok, they are a good carb, but watch the amount.

The world is getting fat because of the filling carbs. Watch your choices, stop eating purely based on taste and find better and newer things to enjoy. Get off of unnecessary carbs for awhile and you will feel and look better.

And put those chips they bring to you in the garbage before you are tempted to eat them. They are about 1g of carb per chip. There is no nutrition there and the salt on it is the basis of the addiction. Throw them out.

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No Sugar Challenge

eatbetter

My husband is on day 6 of his 30 day no sugar challenge.  He feels better, looks better.  He stopped eating bread and his sugar consumption is cut substantially (it is only in the protein bars he has now and then, and they are low sugar protein bars).  He is losing weight and his skin irritations cleared up and his skin is glowing.  He is less bloated and when he had too much sweet potato the other day, he bloated and noticed it.  He is realizing that sugar has not been good for him.  His goal is to feel and look better.  After the 30 days, I think he will continue to watch the bread/sugar intake.  I have been doing it for 3 years now and I am skinny, healthier and look and feel better!  My Irritable Bowel Syndrome (had it since I was a kid) disappeared, as well as my GERD (Gastro-Esophogeal Reflux Disorder)

There was an article last week about a family who gave up sugar for a year.  Here is the article:  http://www.everydayhealth.com/columns/my-health-story/year-of-no-sugar-one-family-grand-adventure/?pos=1&xid=nl_EverydayHealthWomensHealth_20140413

The article explained how well the family did with no sugar.  The mother even said that her kids were WAY less sick than before too. We just have too much sugar in our society and everyone is getting sick, fat and unhealthy.

Have you thought of trying a no-sugar challenge?  Give it up for 30 days and see how you do.

30day

Challenge Rules:

For 30 days we will avoid sweets of any kinds: desserts, candy, sweetened beverages, and even foods that have “hidden sugars” in them!  If you accidentally eat something that has a hidden sugar in it, just keep on going with the challenge.  It happens easily, because so many things have these sugars in them.

We will find new foods that give us energy, without the sugar!  Many people shy away from eating a banana because they have heard that it’s so high in sugar, but yet will fill their pantries with all kinds of processed foods that are supposedly “healthy” and have loads of added sugars!  You can have fruit, but the citrus fruits and berries are lowest in sugar and carbs.  The higher ones are the tropical fruits, including bananas.  Two fruit servings a day is sufficient.  Bread turns to sugar, so limit it to one slice of whole grain at the max, once a day…..but don’t eat white flour–turns to sugar with no fiber.  No nutritional value and adds sugar to your system.

Here are some “sugar” terms to look for in the ingredients lists:

  • Maltose
  • Molasses
  • Corn Syrup
  • High fructose corn syrup
  • Evaporated cane juice
  • Organic cane sugar (just because it is organic doesn’t mean it’s good for you!)
  • Invert sugar
  • Raw sugar
  • Sucrose
  • Brown sugar
  • Corn sweetener (watch eating starches like potatoes, corn, peas, carrots, etc.)
  • watch out for some dressings and ketchup (lots of added sugar)

So what is allowed?

  • Fruit
  • 100% fruit juice (but not all day, too much sugar)
  • Honey in moderation (try to stick to 2 tsp or less/day)
  • Artificial sweeteners

Give it a shot and see how you feel and look at the end of the 30 days.

 

Old Dogs Can Learn New Diet Tricks!

My relative, the one I blogged about being near-diabetic or diabetic (not sure what is the truth)….she has lost 8 pounds in three weeks following my rules.  She would never listen to my rules until she got sick, but now she is listening and eating the foods that I recommend and the recipes that I have given her and the fat is falling off and she is not hungry.

A lady who works at Costco, (the one I have written about eating dates and not losing weight), she told me she is finally losing weight and lost 8 pounds in a a few weeks.  She is very happy about it and she says she will stick to it.  She told my husband that someone at Costco,  gave her a fresh croissant.  Instead of consuming it and ruining her weight loss for the day, she cut it up and shared it with co-workers.  I commend her.  It is hard to change your ways, but you can teach old dogs new diet tricks.  Sometimes they have to be sick or about to be sick before they can commit to making the change.

But, I am telling you.  If you follow the rules, you will lose!

I saw three young girls in the park near my house.  They were thin, but drinking energy drinks.  I started to talk to them and I asked to look at one of their cans.  It said that for 8 ounces, there were 19g of carbs and about 14g of sugar in the 8 ounces.  But, read the can carefully.  There are THREE servings of 8 ounces in this 24 ounce can.  Therefore, she was drinking 57g of carbs, 42g of sugar (about 10 sugar cubes!).  I told them how if they eat more than 100g of carbs per day, they will start to gain and it is hard to get it off (unless they exercise well).  They also said they ate a bag of chips and a bowl with rice in it.  So, they more than had their fill of carbs for the day and it was only 2pm (not to mention that there was no protein in this!).  The lack of food and nutrition label education and being used to pigging out on carbs/sugar–will surely lead them to being unhealthy and overweight.  I asked the girls if they would EAT 10 sugar cubes and they laughed and said, “NO!”  I answered, “But, you are drinking them!”  They were astounded.

So, please don’t wait until you are older and messed up.  Learn as young as you can to change your habits and if you are a sugar addict, there are books on detoxing from sugar.  Dr. Mark Hyman, among many, writes on this subject.  http://drhyman.com/blog/2014/03/06/top-10-big-ideas-detox-sugar/

Sugar-Addiction-Cycle

Please change your habits before you get sick or you gain even more weight.

My husband has given up wheat and sugar for 30 days to see how he feels and does.  He is on day 6 right now.  His skin is in better shape, his belly looks less bloated and I can tell he has lost weight.  He says he feels good and that the salads that we get with meat in them, taste even better than when the meat is in a bun.  He is happy so far.  I do wonder if he will want to go back when he reaches day 30.  He only wanted to lose 5 pounds, but I can see this is making a difference in many ways for him.

I promise that giving up sugar is do-able–in a few weeks, months–it gets easier and easier with time and becomes a way of life.  It is worthwhile and a great thing to do for self-loving!

doit

Want to Lose Weight? Eat a Salad Twice a day, but don’t put these 10 things in it!

A salad with two cups of lettuce and a half cup of two vegetables each in your salad, with 4 ounces of a protein in it is great for losing weight. Eat this twice a day.  But, you will not lose weight if you sabotage it with high-carb items, which can :

1.  Croutons

2. Tortilla strips

3.  A starchy vegetable like corn or peas

4.  Pasta

5:  Sun-dried tomatoes (eat fresh ones)

6.  Candied nuts

7.  High-carb salad dressing

8.  Barbeque sauce (high in sugar)

9. Don’t eat it with bread

10.  Rice or beans (a few beans are ok, but high in carbs, so watch it).

 

A good salad can also be delicious and filling.  Eat healthy and you will enjoy it!

grilled-chicken-salad

A Moment on the Lips, A Lifetime On The Hips

Over three years ago, I began my weight-loss journey.  I call it a journey because it is a long road traveled and it is never really over, even when you reach your weight destination. Because if you ever get there, then you have to learn what to do to keep it off and that is a journey in itself.  Starting today and keep going day by day and inch along, even if it is at a snail pace.  You will eventually get there….

year

So, let’s say you begin with a diet or following the Skinny-Rules to lose weight (http://skinny-rules.com/2014/03/18/my-weight-loss-rules-that-made-me-skinny-and-kept-me-skinny-and-i-eat/). You follow the rules and change your eating style.  You add in some exercise to make it happen even faster and to get fit and healthy (because skinny flabby is not attractive or healthy either).  Then, you are looking different and people start to notice.

Good people who notice changes in you say nice things and compliment you on your efforts and results.  Not-good-people will find ways to discourage what you are doing and what you have done.  You will hear comments that range…..Here are a few……and most of these are said by overweight people who have tried diets and give up too easily and have no willpower over their carb addiction.

  • “You have gone too far.”
  • “You don’t look good.”
  • “Oh, you will gain it back.  Everyone does! ”  (not if you stick to the rules and don’t go back to your old bad habits)
  • “You are anorexic.”
  • “It is unhealthy” (like fat or diabetes is healthy!)
  • “You are too old to be so skinny!”
  • “You have an unhealthy relationship to food.”
  • “You can’t keep eating like that!”
  • “You can’t stay on a diet forever!”  (it isn’t a diet, it is a lifestyle change because the way you eat before was wrong learning or you wouldn’t have gotten larger!)

So, I have heard all of these, but my BMI is 22.  (normal is between 18.5 and 24.5 and I am 22. I would prefer 21, but my body seems to like 22.  I exercise regularly (Pilates 4 days a week, yoga one day a week and elliptical about 5 hours a week).  My Lindora consultant told me that because I work out so much, my muscle is more dense.  She took my measurements the other day and they were the same as when my BMI was 19.  I have been BMI of 22 for a year now and still look good, so I guess this is where I need to be.

I eat between 50 and 100g of carbs per day and I follow the rules.  My deserts consist of things that are low-carb like my One Minute cake recipe from Jorge Cruz.  (I will put it up on my next blog again, but I have it on Skinny-Rules from earlier on.  http://skinny-rules.com/2013/09/04/time-to-eat-some-chocolate-cake-and-not-gain-weight/  I enjoy my eating style and I look hot doing it (so I am told!  :))

So, anyone can say anything or try to guilt me into eating or drinking their calorific food or drink item to make them feel better about doing it, but I worked too hard and care too much about myself to let someone SABOTAGE me.

You have to love yourself and learn to say, “NO!”  That is a hard word to say if you are not used to it and many women are trained to be obliging to people.  If you care about yourself at all and have any self-esteem, you have to learn to say no to saboteurs and to bad food.

A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips!

hips

 

 

And you know what?  If friends are not supportive because you are doing what they can’t do and they are jealous–then they are not your real friends and you need some new ones!

 

Protein bars to go Nuts Over

Bethenny Frankel has done it again.  She has made a new SkinnyGirl product that is worthy of notice!  I found two types of protein bars of hers in Target.  I bought both boxes.  $6 got 5 bars per box.  A fair price for protein bars.  Both types are 23g of carbs and about 5g of fiber (net carbs is 18g) and has about 5 or 6g of protein.

I have not had the Banana Oatmeal Chocolate bar yet, but today, I sampled the Peanut butter, chocolate and salt bar and it had a bit more sugar in it, but OMG.  It was SO good! And I just had the banana one. So good too. These are keepers. Even my husband likes them!

The salt really plays tricks with your tongue and makes it so YUMMY!  It was more like a desert, than a protein bar.  It is also Kosher and gluten free!  I hope Target keeps carrying it!  Beautiful design, nice packaging, tastesskinnycount great and is priced right.

skinnyinside

skinnyfront

 

Skinny Break

I took a break to deal with Skinny-Rules to deal with a close relative.  She called me scared because she is pre-diabetic and almost diabetic, after many warnings.

The issue is that she lives to eat and she has hardly moved her body since I have known her.  She eats whatever she wants and gives to thought to looking at labels and doesn’t really even know what to look for.  She eats what she likes and it hasn’t helped her health.

I had weight problems as a kid with this as a learned eating style in my family.  And if anyone with bad eating habits doesn’t change their ways, they will affect others too-like their children.

As a kid, my mother tried to give us vegetables, but they were all starches–peas, carrots, corn and potatoes.  Her meat was really fatty or processed, lots of white pasta, sauces, bread, sandwiches, Hawaiian rolls, fried chicken, pizza dripping in oil, Hostess items, Ritz crackers, movie popcorn, iceberg lettuce and thousand island dressing, pies, bundt cake, etc.  She knew little about nutrition and didn’t really care.

The weight issue was always with me, minus when I was in college and ate salads a lot…but as soon as I was around home more, I gained it back.

I learned the rules and weight fell off, but my relative’s bad eating habits  continued.  And yes, your choices affect your health, as well as your body.  My thyroid kicked out and I got Fibromyalgia and gained weight.  My relative has ended up with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood glucose.  I could have ended up like her and worse–and she is still in danger of a stroke at 60 pounds too heavy.

So, I have supplied her with the tools.

The rest is now up to her.  She is stubborn and she might die soon because of it…or suffer horrible complications from diabetes.  This is happening because she is addicted to sugar.  I wish she had more fortitude to fight it.  I understand it because I was addicted too.

You have to go out of your way to find low sugar replacements and cut out sugar for weeks before it gets better.  I hardly ever have a craving anymore for any sugar.  This does happen when you get your brain off of this killer substance.  I am healthier, stronger and I look better than ever.  It can be done. Thank GOD I did it and I continue to share my knowledge with others, in hopes that I will help more than one person!

So, please don’t wait until you are 80-years-old or sick to do it!  Love yourself!  Eat food to live and don’t live to eat.  Exercise.

love-yourself

Leptin Resistance and Obesity…is this the problem in losing weight? What can we do about it?

There was a study that came out recently.  In a nutshell:  Research subjects were then given diets intended to maintain their weight loss. A year after the subjects had lost the weight, the researchers repeated their measurements. The subjects were gaining the weight back despite the maintenance diet — on average, gaining back half of what they had lost — and the hormone levels offered a possible explanation.  Their hormones were working against them!

Crave-Foods-Could-be-your-Leptin-levels-how-to-fix-it

One hormone, leptin, which tells the brain how much body fat is present, fell by two-thirds immediately after the subjects lost weight. When leptin falls, appetite increases and metabolism slows. A year after the weight loss diet, leptin levels were still one-third lower than they were at the start of the study, and leptin levels increased as subjects regained their weight.

Other hormones that stimulate hunger, in particular ghrelin, whose levels increased, and peptide YY, whose levels decreased, were also changed a year later in a way that made the subjects’ appetites stronger than at the start of the study.

It was determined that the dieters are putting their bodies into a circumstance that it will resist.

A solution might be to restore hormones to normal levels by giving drugs after dieters lose weight. But, researchers just do not know enough about obesity to prescribe solutions.  GREAT!??!

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/27/health/biological-changes-thwart-weight-loss-efforts-study-finds.html?_r=0

SO, what do we do?

Dr. Mercola (well-known writer/doctor) writes about Leptin resistance.  http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/10/29/leptin-resistance.aspx

Dr. Mercola’s Leptin Resistance Summary

Insulin and leptin resistance are core factors in obesity, which in turn is a risk factor for cancer and may boost tumor growth. But the answer lies not in a pill. To reverse insulin and leptin resistance:

  • Avoid, sugar, fructose, grains, and processed foods
  • Eat a healthful diet of whole foods, ideally organic, and replace the grain carbs with:
    • No-to-low sugar and grain carbs
    • Low-to-moderate amount of protein 
    • As much highly quality healthful fat as you want (saturated and monosaturated). Most people need upwards of 50-70 percent fats in their diet for optimal health. Good sources include coconut and coconut oil, avocados, butter, nuts, and animal fats. Also take a high-quality source of animal-based omega-3 fat, such as krill oil

Similarly, while researchers investigate the pharmaceutical avenues to convert white fat cells to brown in an effort to reduce the potential for cancer growth, other research has already shown that this can likely be achieved through exercise.

80 percent of the health benefits you reap from a healthy lifestyle comes from your diet, and the remaining 20 percent from exercise – but it’s a very important 20 percent, as it acts in tandem with and boosts the benefits derived from a proper diet. For maximum benefits, you’ll want to make sure to include high-intensity interval training.

Can you take leptin or supplements to stimulate leptin to help?  There is no proof of it helping, except in very rare cases.  The suggestions are rather than taking supplements that haven’t been fully proven to help, overweight people have other options to aid leptin functioning.  So therefore, you have to reduce resistance to insulin (a hormone that controls blood sugar) and to bring down high levels of triglycerides (a blood lipid).

Insulin resistance generates leptin resistance. The practical advice is: Get your insulin down by cutting the sugar down, and your insulin resistance would improve and that would help with the weight loss.

sugar

So, we are back to sugar again as the enemy.  CUT OUT SUGAR AND cut down on UNHEALTHY carbs.  Stick with only natural healthy carbs! And watch the amount of fruit you eat.  Fruit has fructose (sugar).

My Weight Loss Rules That Made Me Skinny and Kept me Skinny, and I EAT!

 rulesfat
So, if you want to lose weight, you have to choose to eat better.  You have to make a difference, makes some sacrifices and make a lifestyle change because you have allowed food addiction to rule you and take over your body.
If you choose to lose, here are my rules.  I am still a size 2 (down from a 10 or 12), two and a half years after I changed my ways, and you can be a lower size too.  You are allowed 50-100 carbs a day.  So, you have to count and you will get used to it.

Basically what I do:  6 meals a day, every two to three hours.  You eat every 3-4 hours because you will get hungry and when you eat, then your metabolism will not slow down and burn off slowly.  Believe it or not, eating this way makes your body BURN!   You might even feel hot. 
1.  I basically have a meat and veg salad two times a day, lunch and dinner
2.  I have two small fruit servings a day
3.  I have  an egg, and try to have it different most days and I might make an omelette and throw a piece of low fat cheese in it.
4.  Spinach helps lower food cravings.
5.  If you are hungry, drink something or have a small protein to tide you over, like low-fat baby bell cheese or some kind of low fat cheese or meat.
6.  I eat three protein snacks a day and I vary it between something from Lindora.com, or a protein bar or shake.
7.  Also, you can have nuts and seeds as a protein.  You are better off with unsalted and you need to measure it out.  For example, a measured cup of mixed nuts can be 30g of carbs.  If you want to lose weight, that is like a third of your day’s carbs. So, have half a cup and a piece of cheese, but you are better off not eating an entire cup.  Sunflower and sunflower seeds has a similar carb count at 28g for a full cup.  (sugar is low, so you that is good)
1.  Breakfast:
PROTEIN NUMBER ONE.  I do an egg.  If it makes you happy, have an egg with some bacon or turkey sausage by Jenny-O.
Have a piece of Fruit.  You are better off with berries or citrus.  So have half a grapefruit or some strawberries.  Go ahead, spray whipped cream on it–no carbs or sugar.
Look at the portion size of fruit in the paperwork.  I do half a banana, but I stick to the lowest in carbs–berries and citrus.  Some fruits like Apples and Bananas are high in carbs/sugar.
2.  Snack:  
 
PROTEIN NUMBER TWO: A protein of your choice.  
PROTEIN CHOICES:  Eggs, cheese, turkey, chicken, sausage, hot dog, etc. You can do a yogurt, but you should try Greek Yogurt, tastes SO much better than regular yogurt and healthier too.  Dannon lite and fit makes a GREEK YOGURT that is really good and low in carbs and sugar.  Get the cherry or raspberry one.  They use beatles for color in their strawberry and blueberry one and that makes me want to puke.  There is low-fat Cottage Cheese too.
Another kind of protein you can do is a protein bar….pick one from the choices and the right size.  Power Crunch bar, the chocolate one and the peanut butter one are two very good flavors. These taste like delicious wafer bars.  There are more at Smart and Final, but these two are the best and Trader Joes prices are slightly better.  The Trader Joe’s protein shakes in a can are really low in carbs (taste better cold).  These are not the thickest shakes, so if you mix in some almond milk, that would be better.
You should try UNSWEETENED vanilla almond milk.  LOW in sugar and carbs and really not bad at all.  Healthier for you and better for a diet.  It is in the refrigerated section near the milk in Trader Joes.
 
3.  Lunch
PROTEIN NUMBER THREE: 
I have a protein, but I throw the protein in a salad and make it a big salad.  You have to have salad twice a day.
There is a choice of two veggies (check portion size) to put in the salad if you want.
2 cups lettuce in that salad.  I just do a good salad and I throw in
You can have a fruit serving.  Check size.
4.  Snack:
PROTEIN NUMBER FOUR:
A protein again.  (see above)
5.  Dinner:
PROTEIN NUMBER FIVE:
just like lunch.  (see lunch)
6.  Snack:  A protein again.
PROTEIN NUMBER SIX:
I do a small Carbolite (now only at a few places like the yogurt store next to Ralphs on Ventura and Topanga and a few out-of-the-way places) or low sugar ice cream like Breyer’s has or Dreyers (usually says no sugar added).  Just a cup of it.  Measure and look at the serving size and carbs on the label.  But, you have to look at how many carbs have added up to pick.  Most proteins have no carbs.  You can have another power crunch bar too.
 
Miscellaneous:
You can drink Splenda type soda, but get in 80 ounces of fluid a day!
Coffee:  Non fat dairy creamer can be used and Splenda type sweetener
Non Fat salad dressing on salad, I use Trader Joe’s Ginger Soy Non fat and it is so good.  Look at labels.  Balsamic vinaigrette is good and low fat Ranch is usually good.
Take Potassium Glutonate and a multi vitamin daily.
 
Consider a multi B vitamin to keep your energy up!  I get two B shots a week and weight often.  You should weigh daily and see how it is going!
You can do a grain or bread instead of a protein, but only 3 times a week and look at the size.  Instead of a protein, for example, you can do a slice of wheat toast.  Oatmeal is only half a cup.  Get bread that is low carb and high fiber.  Dave’s Killer Bread at Pavillions and other places…you can look online.  It is good and high in protein and a lot of fiber.  Ezekiel bread at Trader Joes is one of the best.  But, only two slices a week!!  There are low-carb tortillas available at Trader Joes and Costco.  There is a huge difference between a regular carb tortilla and low-carb tortilla.  One is almost 40 carbs and one is under 10.  Also, Western Bagel has low carb (10g) Perfect 10 bagels.  They are tasty and such a great carb count!  And they have protein too.
Restricted diet!!!    But, it works and if you are eating about every 2-3 hours, you won’t die!

Spinach Curbs Appetite

No wonder the plateau diet wants you to have spinach once a day.  Spinach is an appetite suppressant, who knew?

The article that just came out on it is a medical article.

http://www.medicaldaily.com/reasons-why-you-should-eat-spinach-thylakoids-make-you-feel-more-full-regulate-blood-glucose-271079

According to a Swedish study, researchers have discovered that spinach contains thylakoid, a compound common in other green leaves that slows down food digestion.  When prepared properly, spinach has the potential to be an appetite suppressant, with the effect of making people feel fuller and curbing over-eating.  In addition to lower blood glucose levels, the thylakoids were able to suppress people’s appetites for longer, which could be useful for those who are trying to lose weight while battling constant hunger pangs.

So have it in an omelette, a smoothie or in a salad….but despite kale being a great source of iron, it is spinach that will curb your appetite and allow you to be more successful in a weight loss program.

spinach-smoothies-5911

Here is a recipe for a LOW CARB spinach smoothie.  Most smoothie recipes call for a banana.  Bananas spike blood sugar and are high in sugar and carbs (18g per medium banana).  So, here is an alternative.
1 c. water
1 c. unsweetened vanilla hemp milk or unsweetened almond milk (Trader Joe’s has a great one in the refrigerator section)
1/2 mixed frozen berries (this is what helps give it the smoothie-like consistency and temperature, although I suppose you could leave it out to dip under 10 g. of carbs)
4 cups spinach leaves (or kale, chard, dandelion, mustard greens, etc.) I’ve read its best to switch out your greens each day, so I buy 2-3 at a time. Spinach has the mildest flavor, so you might want to ease into green smoothies with this first.
3 tsp. flax seeds
1 Tb. almond butter

Blend and serve! Should be more than enough to drink and share.  Can replace a meal(out of six), salads and your fruit for the day.  Should be about 17g of carbs if you drink the whole thing!  It is less carbs if it is in a salad.  There is about 1 carb per cup of spinach.