Two months have passed since I radically changed my diet. I have stopped eating:
- all processed food (chips, crackers, cookies, candy)
- all pasta
- all bread
- all rice
- all grains/legumes etc
- all sugar
- most fruit that is high in sugar/low in fibre
I was never really a drinker so I did not have to give that up. I think I have had four glasses of red wine in the last two months and that is it for alcohol. Have I had a cheat day or a bad day? Nope. I have had a couple of jelly beans here and there – and I mean just one for the whole day. I have avoided chips (which were my downfall before) even when Marvin is eating them right in front of me. I have even made it through PMS without needing chocolate of any sort! I am stronger and more determined than I thought.
It was hard to pass up the Cadbury Mini Eggs – damn those little things are so good! I did not even eat one because I am not sure I could eat just one of those!! Other than that the only junk food I miss is licorice. Cherry Nibs and Twizzlers. I need to find a substitute for those – maybe dried cherries?? Although high in carbs they are still better than sugar and corn syrup!!
I know that this eating plan sounds restrictive and it appears like there is nothing left to eat. Nothing could be further from the truth. A really good summary of how I am eating can be found here. A typical day in my life looks like this:
This example was actually a super high carb lunch day as I ate a lot of bell peppers in my Greek salad at lunch. I am not worried about those kinds of carbs. I am not really concerned about calories – I am only concerned about carb intake and keeping it to around 30 net carbs per day. This app counts calories which is sort of annoying but I am getting used to it AND I have modified my daily carb limit manually as they think I should be eating low calorie – high carb food by default. Notice the lack of snacks? I could have snacks if I wanted them but I am NOT hungry between meals – not at all. Some days I will grab an ounce of almonds or a piece of cheese but that is not the norm.
There are some great bloggers out there that make delicious low carb food and share their recipes! Carolyn at All Day I Dream About Food and I Breathe….I’m Hungry have become two of my favourites. I also visit Kalyn’s Kitchen quite a bit. Lucky for me I love vegetables and meats like salmon and chicken. I am not the biggest fan of eggs and actually did not eat them for years! I am back to eating Omega-3 natural eggs because they are SO good for me and very filling. Low carb and high protein (and fat) = good food. Because I enjoy cooking and experimenting in the kitchen I am enjoying the new experience of cooking with butter and cream rather than skim milk and margarine (yuck).
I still have to wrap my head around the fact that I am eating butter and cream and all things high fat. Olive oil, coconut oil, grape seed oil, full fat cheese, full fat yogurt AND losing weight. I seriously still have to pinch myself because I cannot believe it works. I have become a low-carb zealot. Seriously. I see friends struggling as they eat low calorie and count points. They are frustrated that it is a lot of work and that they are hungry. I want them to really listen to what I am telling them. I hope that my improved health/weight loss will get them interested in changing their eating habits as my words are not working. I have to remember my new favourite quote from Pinterest.
The best part of eating my new way is that I am not ever starving-hungry. Ever. And I don’t feel deprived. I could never, ever go back to eating low fat/diet food. I spent way too many years eating low fat and being HUNGRY. Buying stuff that was supposedly good for me but actually filled with crap to taste good. I refuse to put artificial food in my body. That low fat/diet stuff has to be MADE to taste good and they do that by adding salt and sugar. I do use sugar alcohol (erithritol) for baking but that is it.
I am thrilled that my family is doing this along with me. Not my kids but Marvin is trying. Of course he is still eating junk but he is getting better and is watching his sugar/junk intake way more. My mom and dad have seen great improvements in two months as well. Dad has lost over four inches on his belly and over 20 pounds! This is really helping him manage his diabetes too. Oops – there I go preaching low-carb again.
In the back of my mind I still keep thinking about heart disease and cholesterol but enough studies have been done that show that those are NOT linked. I actually just finished a great book on this called The Cholesterol Myth. There is so much research backing eating a high fat-low carb diet. I know that problems CAN happen if people eat a high protein-low carb diet but that is not what I am doing.
My breakdown per day usually looks like this
- 55% Fat
- 35% Protein
- 10% Carbs
Yes the fat content is super high but it mostly comes from good fat like eggs, salmon and oils.
I was describing my coconut macaroon cookies and explaining how good they were and a friend of mine asked me why I was spending so much time finding ways to still have cookies and treats. She told me I should just cut those things out all together and focus on food and not snacks. Really? Maybe I could do that if this were a temporary diet but this is how I plan to eat for the rest of my days and I certainly do NOT want to live the rest of my days without cookies or treats!! Let’s be realistic here people.
It is funny how your taste buds change when you are not eating junk. I really do love almonds more than chips now. Especially the wasabi soy sauce ones from Blue Diamond!
I can definitely say I have more energy. This isn’t a good thing all the time though as I find it hard to actually go to bed at night. I know that sleep is important and that even though I have energy and feel wide awake that my body needs to sleep. Thankfully I can fall asleep really fast when I finally do get to bed around 11 at night. I am aiming for at least seven hours a night right now. I was out with my ladies’ club last week and we all were up at around the same time that morning (6:30). They were ALL tired by 10 PM and I was still going strong – SO much energy it is amazing. I told them about my energy levels and they all said “no kidding!!”
I may eventually get back to eating whole grain/flax bread and things like quinoa in moderation but I am not ready for that yet. Some of my co-workers doing this with me are staying in ketosis and that is their goal as they don’t really need to lose weight. They are not having and never plan to have any sort of grain ever again. I am not sure I could do that?
The scale has not moved radically in the last month (two pounds per week) but that is okay. This isn’t supposed to be a rapid weight loss thing. I am down 28 pounds in two months so that is good. The only part of my body that got smaller this month (according the the tape measure) is my hips. All other areas stayed pretty much the same. Time to get exercising for sure!
On to month three – adding in some more cardiovascular exercise and some weights this month!