Where to begin... well to start off, my professional life has been very crazy. The 9-5 day job is keeping me hopping. I am in the midst of a learning curve right now after taking on some new responsibilities and though interesting and challenging, it can tire out one's little brain! I have also been working to set up a new website dedicated to the parents, caregivers, siblings of Autistic children. A brand-spanking new logo has now been created but the site itself won't launch til fall. My intention was a spring 2012 launch but I truly need to find more time in life to sit down and give it the design attention it deserves. Lastly, Lemon Drop has been motoring along. I am hosting a great Easter Giveaway too and all followers worldwide can participate so head over there and check it out!
Now on to my personal life. I have been really tightening up on both diet and exercise. So why the question of changing the blog name? Because low carb (as in the Atkins or Dukan Diet variety) really isn't cutting it anymore. Let me explain...
For years I have loved the idea behind Clean Eating. I like the balance, the nutrition, the focus on whole foods...the entire way of life has always appealed to me. I bought the mags, read Tosca Reno's books, etc, but each time I tried it I failed. Weight loss would stall almost immediately. I would feel bloated, lethargic, bitchy and would revert in time back to low carb eating. But to be honest, I missed my more carby food group. I wanted my pasta, my cereals, and my bread yet even in moderation they didn't work for me. I didn't want to have to forgo these things but with low carb the headaches vanished, the water retention disappeared, the weight loss kicked off again and all was well...except for my gut feeling that cutting out anything somewhat "starchy" was not the best thing for me. Avoiding highly refined and overly processed foods makes total sense to me but is a yam or brown rice really that bad? I think not.
But my issue is not brown rice or yams. My issue , after some reflection, is - WHEAT ! Or to be more specific - gluten in general. The title of this blog post should say it all - Adios Wheat.
It is quite funny that my son is on a gluten-free diet, has been for years, yet I never really thought I had an intolerance. Aftering suffering from IBS for years I just figured I had a sensitive gut in general. Even with low carb I could have flares now and then. But after deciding to avoid all wheat products for awhile and then add them back in (your typical elimination diet strategy) I was clearly shown how bad gluten is for me. I did just this last week. I added in some carbs - not white flour or refined sugar but a whole grain bun. Yes, a fairly innocent whole grain bun which in fact acted like a virus on my stomach lining. Talk about sick. Lesson learned.
But that doesn't mean I want to go back to low-carb either. As we all know, several low carb diets out there insist on the removal of pretty much all starches in the weight loss phase and the addition of lots of heavy fats such as cream cheese, whipping cream, bacon, etc. I don't think all of that is a healthy substitute either and it simply doesn't jive with me. I want, no let me rephrase, I NEED balance. Clean Eating gives me that balance and allows for gluten-free substitutions which I wish I had paid attention to when I tried to eat that way in the past. No more gluten - period.
So after 1 week of eating clean and adding back some higher carb foods that are also gluten-free, I can say I feel great. The water retention again is gone, the sugar cravings bye-bye, the leaner meats, low fat cheeses, yogurts, fruit (yes, even bananas!) are lovely and the fact that I can once again eat my beloved oatmeal each and every day plus a slice of GF bread or a serving of rice is wonderful. I also eat 5 to 6 small meals a day to keep the metabolism revving high and ensure I have a protein source at each meal. I am a happy camper.
Here is a breakdown of my typical day
M1 - 8:30 AM
- 1 serving oatmeal with 1 tbsp raisins and cinnamon, no milk added
- 1 hard boiled egg
- 2 cups coffee with light cream
- 2 cups water
M2 - 12 PM (later M2 due to scheduling conflict)
- Protein shake (made with coconut milk), 1 med banana, dark cocoa powder, stevia extract and ISO Whey protein
- 2 cups water
M3 - 2 PM
- 4 oz grilled chicken breast
- 1 cup tossed salad with 1 hard boiled egg, chopped, white only
- 1 serving balsamic vinaigrette
- 1 slice GF whole grain bread or 1/2 cup brown rice
M4 - 4 PM
- 1 small green apple
- 1 serving ( 1oz) pecans
- 1 green tea with ginger
M5 - 6:30 PM
- 4 oz roasted chicken breast
- 1 cup tossed salad with 1 tbsp dressing
- 1 cup steamed broccoli
- 2 cups water
So there you have it folks, an update on what is going on in my life and how my eating plan is moving along to what suits me best.
Wishing you all the best and encouraging you to ensure that your health is at the top of your priority list !