Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Low Carb Cheeseburger - Not Your Average Quarter Pounder with Cheese!

One of the hardest things about eating LCHF (low carb, high fat) is eating out at restaurants, but it can be done!

Today I want to share a tip about eating at fast food places. McDonald's has always been one of my favorites. 


Photo Credit - McDonald's.com
At McDonald's my favorite was the Quarter Pounder with Cheese! The whole meal with fries and a drink. Of course you have to buy the meal, it's cheaper that way...that's where they get you!

The other day I woke up and was exhausted and couldn't even begin to imagine what I was going to take to the office for my lunch. So I didn't take anything. Lunch time rolled around and I had the bright idea to go to McDonald's and get a burger and bring it back to the office and throw away the bread. 

That's exactly what I did, I bought just the burger, took both the buns and threw them in the trash and ate just the meat, cheese, onions, pickles, mustard and ketchup. It was delicious, you could really taste the meat and condiments, whereas before I just tasted bread.

So I've been trying the bun less burger at other restaurants. The great thing is to order it bun less, or lettuce wrapped, that way you don't waste food by throwing away the bun...it killed me to throw away the bun!

When I got home from work today, I was wondering what I could have for dinner. I had made some ground turkey with taco seasoning last night. 

So I thought maybe I could mimic the quarter pounder with cheese using the ground turkey and no bun. Check out this beauty!



I heated up my previously cooked ground turkey in the microwave. While that was heating I sliced up some iceberg lettuce, dill pickle and onion and took out a cheese slice. 

I put down a layer of the lettuce, then the cheese slice and then the hot ground turkey. I plopped on a dollop of mayonnaise and liberally topped it all with yellow mustard. Put down my pickles and onion and Voila! 


I have to tell you it was delicious! I ate it with a spoon and it was easier than eating it wrapped. Since the turkey was already ground and not cooked as a patty it was easy to just pick it up with a spoon so I was sure to get a great bite in every spoon.

The whole thing was LCHF, as you can see from the nutrition info from myfitnesspal.com food diary that I enter information into.

The first column is calories, then carbs, then fat, protein, sodium and fiber, giving me a total net carb of 5. When I'm trying to stick with 20 to 24 carbs per day that is pretty great for just one meal, one very filling and satisfying meal. I think I'm having this for lunch tomorrow!

Just for he sake of comparison, below I have the nutrition info for a quarter pounder with cheese with the works, as it comes straight from McDonald's, as I used to eat it. See that? 42 carbs!

Nutrition Info  - McDonalds.com

Here's the nutrition info without the bun and without ketchup, as ketchup has sugars in it and increase the carb count and I prefer mustard on a burger anyway. Is that crazy? 5 whole carbs and if I subtract the 1 gram of fiber my net carb is 4!

Nutrition Info - McDonalds.com
McDonald's website has a "make your meal" tool where you can take off or add items and it will give you the same info I posted above. Very handy and makes it easier to customize foods if you plan on eating at McDonald's. 

So you can eat out on a LCHF way of eating, you just have to plan and become familiar with nutrition info on various foods. Myfitnesspal.com is a great resource for that and I love it!


 

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Low Carb Bread or Muffin in a Cup

I have a new favorite low-carb website. The reason I love Lynn's website Traveling Low Carb, is that she's like me, she's not a big lover of cooking and loves to keep things simple. So I've been getting lots of great ideas on how to keep this WOE simple.

One of the most basic breakfast items you can eat with a LCHF diet is eggs. I've tried them as an omelet, fried, scrambled with veggies, scrambled with bacon, all kinds of ways and while they are delicious I have to admit I'm a little tired of them.

The other day I saw on Lynn's blog a post about low carb bread sold by Great Low Carb Bread Company. Each slice of their plain bread has 1 net carb! One slice of the Rainbow Brand White Bread I normally buy has 27 net carbs. I try to stick with 20 carbs per day, but no more than 24. I would go through my carbs for the day with just one slice of plain bread!

This sounded like a great alternative, but I held off buying it because the price is $7.99 per loaf plus $5.99 shipping for a total cost per loaf of bread of $13.98! The shipping is a flat cost so I figured I would wait for the weekend and shop the Netrition.com website to see what other low carb items I could order. 

I felt it this bread would be a great alternative to eggs in the morning. I could toast a slice and slather it with avocado, easy and I would get the healthy fats I need for my WOE.

This morning I remembered that I used to make a muffin in a cup with flax seed and looked up the recipe and made it so I would have something "bready" to accompany my coffee.


Easy Peasy and only 1.8 carbs per half a muffin! Each muffin has 3.6 carbs per muffin using the ingredients I will list below, but I cut it in half and ate two slices with my coffee, adding a pat of butter and 1 teaspoon of Smuckers Sugar Free Strawberry Preserves per round which would be roughly 3.6 carbs. 

It was just as satisfying to me as an Entenmanns Strawberry Cream Cheese Danish which has 58 carbs per serving! I didn't even think about it, but I probably could have used cream cheese mixed with the preserves as a topping! Will have to try that next weekend. 


Later in the morning for my actual breakfast I took the last two rounds of this bread and topped it with some homemade guacamole made with tomato and jalapeno and garlic salt. 

Not the prettiest of pictures, but trust me, this was delicious! Much better than my usual eggs breakfast! 1.8 carbs for the muffin and I estimate 1.6 for the guac for a total of 3.4 for my breakfast!

I'm thinking that I'm going to make a muffin in a cup instead of buying the $14 bread! Plus flax seeds are high in fiber and rich in Omega-3 essential fatty acids which are "good" fats that have been known to have heart-healthy effects. 

Here's the recipe for the Muffin in a Cup:


Mix ingredients well in a microwaveable coffee mug and cook for 50 to 60 minutes in the microwave. Slips right out of the mug, simply enjoy! You could also add some diced walnuts or slivered almonds.



 

Friday, July 24, 2015

The Battle is with my Head and not my Stomach!

I'm just finishing up week 3 of the LCHF WOE (low carb, high fat, way of eating) and I feel terrific. My knees don't hurt as much, I can get up out of my chair without making those noises that my dad used to make and I have tons of energy and I'm in a better mood! Hard to believe that simply changing my diet can help that much...well that and exercising regularly. The two go hand in hand!

I was commenting on a post on Facebook to a question posed by Lynn of Low Carb Traveler (an excellent low carb blogger) in which she asks, "How often do you eat off plan? Meaning: NOT low carb? And do you do it intentionally, or is it usually just a "slip up"? 

My answer was, "I think for me it's hard when I go off the program, even just once. But a couple of weeks ago I had planned to go on a road trip with friends as a celebration for my birthday, so I did allow myself that day to have two margaritas and chips and salsa at dinner at a Mexican restaurant, but that was it and it was a calculated "cheat". I am resolved to making this a way of life and not straying from the plan. It's not always easy but I feel so much better. I may not always be satisfied with what I eat, but I'm never hungry. It's more a battle with my mind than with my stomach."

Here we are having a bracing Margarita to give us courage to get on the Glass Bottom boat, this was strictly for medicinal purposes! From L to R - Lupe, Lisa and me.
That comment made me stop and think. It's not that I eat because I'm hungry, I eat because I have cravings for certain foods and those foods aren't low-carb.

Jalapeno Infused Cucumber Margaritas, Chips and Salsa after the boat trip! 
Ok, see that picture right up there? See that basket of tortilla chips? That...that right there is my downfall, my kryptonite! I adore tortilla chips with salsa and there is no low carb alternative. You can find great recipes for low carb pancakes, brownies, fudge, cookies, cakes, cheesecake, almost anything imaginable that would satisfy a sweet tooth, but my problem is I have a Salty Tooth!

There is nothing as satisfying to me as chips and salsa. Well maybe Cheetos, but that's an addiction!

So even though I am never hungry with this WOE I am never completely satisfied! There is always something missing. I imagine it's like an alcoholic or a drug addict, you can go on with life but something is always missing and as soon as you have that first taste of it all reasoning goes out the window!

Last night Lisa came over and she made guacamole, which is only good with tortilla chips. I peeled and sliced a cucumber and ate my guacamole with slices of cucumber. Very filling, but not as satisfying as the chips. That is just something that I will have to get used to and maybe, in time, I will lose the craving...but I don't think so. I just can't let my stomach and cravings win over the knowledge in my head that I am doing the right thing for me by eating LCHF!


 

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Time to Get Off My Butt! Won't You Join Me?

So I've mentioned before how I follow a low carb/high fat lifestyle aka LCHF. It's a very simple way of eating aka WOE but it does take determination, will power and the ability to plan ahead and be organized with your WOE.

In case you don't know what LCHF is, you can visit The Diet Doctor link HERE, or you can to go Atkins.com for more info. I could explain it in this post but it would go on forever and I would never be able to explain it as well as those two websites do.

I've done this WOE for several years and have had a lot of success with it. I feel wonderful when I'm LCHF! I have energy, sleep well, my digestive system works great, those aches and pains from inflammation and arthritis ease up and on the plus side I lose weight. No bloating or gassiness, no heartburn or acid re-flux!

So knowing this...why do I go back to bad habits? Why do I go back to eating sugar, wheat, flour and processed foods? I don't honestly have an answer. I think about it often and wonder why I sabotage myself when I know that on LCHF I feel awesome! I guess it's because I'm human and weak and give in to temptation and because Cheetos are SO DAMN GOOD! 

A couple of weeks ago I was finally sick of myself. I had lost 22 pounds a year or so ago and have put them all back on plus some, so I realized I had to make a change and quit thinking, "I'll start tomorrow."

So I did, for the past two weeks I have stuck religiously to LCHF and I lost 5 pounds. Now in the past when I've done LCHF I would lose 10 to 15 pounds in the first two weeks, but as you get older your metabolism changes, your body changes and nothing is as easy as it was when you were younger...am I right?

Anyway, it's been two weeks and I'm 5 pounds lighter and I know that I have to stick to this way of eating for my health, for my family and for my own self worth. So I'll be back to posting low carb food and things having to do with my WOE, hoping it may help someone and that it will help me to be accountable to myself.

I've also been trying to exercise. It's hard to go from being a couch potato whose biggest form of exercise is walking from her house to the car to the office back to the car and back home. Yeah, that's probably a whole 2 minutes of exercise per day!

So I have started slowly by using the Leslie Sansone Walk at Home Videos. I started by doing her Energy Boost 5 Minute Walk. Trust me, in the beginning I couldn't even do 2 minutes and now I'm doing 5 easily and probably should move to a different video. But because of my back and Sciatica issues I tend to be very careful so I don't end up hurting myself. 

I do the 5 minute video below when I wake up, on my 10am break at work, at lunch time, on my 3pm break and around 7pm. So all total I'm doing 25 minutes of exercise per day. If I knew that right now I had to stand up and do 25 minutes of exercise I would just make excuses, but who doesn't have 5 minutes, 5 times per day? Or even 10 minutes...it doesn't matter how much, the point is to start and get your body moving. 

This is the energy boosting video and it really does give you a boost of energy, I can feel it working already in how alert and active I am when I get home from work. Instead of just sitting and being a couch potato I'm being more active and cooking, exercising, watering my poor plants and cleaning my house!



Tonight I had time to try to find another 5 minute video and I found the next one I'm going to post. This one seemed a bit more fast paced and I'm going to mix it up and keep doing these for another week and then perhaps move up to ones that are a little longer in length.

This one seemed to give me a better workout, so it may be one I want to try early in the morning when I'm rested and have more energy because even though it's similar to the one above I believe she moves faster because I got a little winded!




I also want to share this next one even though I haven't actually done it because it's one to work the legs and with my Sciatica it couldn't hurt to strengthen my legs, so I will give this one a try tomorrow.



Can't wait to wake up tomorrow and try each of these videos. See what I mean? Moving gives you energy...so move!

   

Friday, July 10, 2015

Tales of the Bathroom...It's Been Awhile!

I'm always amazed at the things that I find in the women's bathroom in our office building. We have two - four stall bathrooms, one each for the men and one for the women. One is on the 2nd floor and one on the floor where my office is.

I've shared posts with you before about the things that I have found in the bathroom that just have me shaking my head and wondering why grown-ass adults would be such slobs! Especially grown-ass adult women!

In May of 2011 I posted about finding a peanut husk. Someone apparently finds it easier to move their bowels while munching on peanuts! You can read about and see pictures here.

Then a few months later in September of 2011 I posted another "what the heck" moment. In a stall on top of the sanitary pads stainless steel disposal box I found a plastic fork. One can only assume someone was eating a salad while making a quick "pit stop" and forgot their fork when they left...right? You can read about and see pictures of that one here

Things kind of slowed down then and I thought that maybe that person that liked to snack while sitting on the potty was gone, but then again on May 13 of 2014 I found a piece of wadded up foil just sitting on the floor next to the commode. I had a fun time trying to think up what was in the foil. Stories and pictures here

And then there was peace in the land and everyone cleaned up after themselves until today. Today was the mother of all messes! The ultimate "what the heck"!

Check this out! A sink full of something black. What it is I don't know. 


I thought about smelling it, but it grossed me out and I couldn't bring myself to do so. Plus it wasn't contained just to the sink...oh no, of course not, check out the floor.


And this was just under the sink, the whole floor and all 4 stalls had this black residue all over the place. It just makes you wonder? What is it? Was there someone this morning that decided to re-pot an office plant in the women's bathroom and then had a seizure while holding the pot and thrashed about all over the place, in and out of all the stalls scattering dirt everywhere?

If so, where is the plant? Why were there no leaves? And why would this person think that there was no need for her to clean this up? I can only assume it was a woman as it was the women's bathroom.

Just leaves me scratching my head...




 

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Why you should go see Magic Mike XXL

Photo Credit - Intouch Weekly 
Went to see Magic Mike last night with a group of girlfriends to celebrate the birthday of one of their daughters who turned 24. O.M.G.!!! 

I had never seen the first one, never even had a remote interest in it, but O.M.G.!!! I can see why women are gaga for this movie. 

The story line was ridiculous, they start out on their trip to the Strippers Convention at Myrtle Beach in what is basically a glorified taco truck turned into a FroYo Mobile. (FroYo for those not in the know is frozen yogurt.) 

They end up getting to the Strippers Convention in a Rolls Royce convertible…c’mon!!! Seriously? 

The people they meet along the way are gorgeous, rich and successful and more than willing to help out a band of good looking, hunky male strippers, while getting absolutely nothing in return. 



Wait, I take that back…one of the characters played by one of my favorite actresses, Andie MacDowell, gets to spend a passionate night with one of the strippers after exclaiming that she wished that she had known them back in her day and he tells her with a smoldering look, “I’d say it’s still your day, ma’am!” We women in the audience just swooned and you could hear from the sighs that we were all imagining him saying that to us!



Channing Tatum is so physically fit. I don't know if he really performs all those dance moves but as Andie MacDowells character says in the movie "Dayyum!".


So why do I think you should go see this movie? Cause it's fun! The music was fun, the dancing is phenomenal and it's great to go with a group of girl friends and just have fun and hoot and holler and growl! 

And we all need a little more DAYYUM in our lives!

       

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

One Thousand White Women and Snowy Egrets

This is a rather random post but I’m reading a book entitled One Thousand White Women - The Journals of May Dodd by the author Jim Fergus. 

I’m really enjoying this book and came across a passage today that I want to share, but before I do let me give you a little background on the book. 

The story is about May Dodd and her adventures in traveling across the country from New York to the American West in the year 1875 as part of a government program to send unmarried, fertile woman to marry and mate with Cheyenne warriors in hopes of assimilating future generations of the Cheyenne people with the white man’s world. 

The U.S. government has agreed to send the Cheyenne Nation 1,000 white women in exchange for 1,000 horses, 500 hundred wild horses and 500 that are already broken. The book has not and probably won’t explain the condition and value of the horses that the Cheyenne will be sending to the U.S. government but it does explain where these women will come from. 

A few will be women that volunteer, that are of a certain age and able to bear children. The rest of them will come from prisons and insane asylums where in exchange for traveling across country and marrying heathens, they will be given their freedom. 

Now I’m not big in politics, don’t throw my political opinion around as easily and frequently as do most people, especially on Facebook, but I will say that it doesn’t seem as though our government has changed much from 1875! 

In the part of the book that I want to share, the women have already arrive at Fort Laramie and are being detained there, basically as prisoners until they are shipped off to their new spouses. The ladies are gathered at the table for dinner and are discussing the latest New York fashion in hats. 

There is one lady named Helen Flight who is the author of a book entitled Birds of Britain and is working on a new book entitled Birds of America. Ms. Flight finds herself short of funds to continue her research on the Birds of America and thinks it a grand idea to head off to marry a Cheyenne warrior for the opportunity to study the bird life of the western prairies at no expense to her! That makes perfect sense right? 

One of the ladies is wearing a new hat with feathers and they are all commenting on the hat and Ms. Flights says, “I say, Miss Bradley, were you aware that the feathers on your hat are the breeding plumes of the snowy egret?” 

“Why no I wasn’t”, answers Miss Bradley. “Isn’t that fascinating?” 

Snowy Egret - Full Breeding Plumage - Photo Credit
“Quite” says Ms. Flight, “rather a nasty business, actually, which I had occasion to witness last spring while I was in the Florida swamps studying the wading birds of the Everglades for my Birds of America portfolio. As you correctly stated, the feather-festooned hat such as the one you wear is very much the vogue in New York fashion these days. The hat makers there have commissioned the Seminole Indians who inhabit the Everglades to supply them with feathers for the trade. The Indians have devised an ingenious method of netting the birds while they are on their nests—which the birds are reluctant to leave due to their instinct to protect their young. Of course, the Indians must kill the adult birds in order to pluck the few ‘aigrettes’ or nuptial plumes as they are more commonly known. Entire rookeries are thus destroyed, the young orphaned birds left to starve in the nest. Pity… a terribly disagreeable sound that of a rookery full of nestlings crying for their parents, you can hear it across the swamp for miles…”

This made me tear up. Imagining those poor birds defending their young and being killed, simply for feathers! According to Wikipedia, the Snowy Egret is now a protected species thanks to the Migratory Bird Treaty Act

The book also talks about the train stopping along the way on the prairie for the men on board to "hunt" the buffalo on the prairie by shooting them where they stand out of the train windows. There is no "hunting" involved, just cruelty and cowardliness at shooting defenseless animals for sport. The animals left where they fall, some dead some mortally wounded, some with newborn spring calf's, left to rot.

It just makes me sad and angers me to think of how cruel human beings can be. I'm not opposed to killing animals to supply us with food, as long as it is done humanely, but to kill them for sport or for fun or for fashion! No! Just no...