What I Learned About Hunger Today

I hesitated to write this post because, in truth, I have never known true hunger. Thankfully, I’ve never known what it’s like to go without food or too little food for days and weeks on end like too many of the world’s (and even some of this country’s) inhabitants.

When I talk about hunger in this post, I’m talking about that nagging feeling in the pit of your stomach when it’s past time for lunch or dinner and you’ve been caught unprepared.  You know how it is – no healthy cooked food in the house, nothing defrosted, and no convenience food in the house. That was me last night.

I was working away on my computer and, when I looked up, it was almost 9:00p.m. I hadn’t eaten anything since lunch and I was ravenous.  The meat I had taken out to defrost was still frozen and, since I hadn’t gone food shopping, I was missing key ingredients needed to make my standby convenience favorites.  Or so I thought.

Looking in my pantry this morning, with a calmer mind and my recipe books at hand, I see that I actually did have all of the ingredients necessary to make myself a healthy meal, but last night I was too hungry and too impatient to figure it out and think it through.  So what did I do?  I ordered in from an Italian restaurant.

I felt like the world’s biggest hypocrite.  Here I was, just starting to embark on a healthy lifestyle again, and I order in a chicken parmesan sandwich and fries.  I inhaled half the sandwich and every single French fry until I was stuffed.

I felt terrible – physically and emotionally – and then I remembered something my old Weight Watchers leader used to say.  She said that if you wait until you’re ravenous to get something to eat, you’ll inhale food like a Hoover vacuum cleaner and regret it.  I thought what she said was funny at the time, but, last night, that’s pretty much what I did.

She talked about how important it is to keep healthy food and snacks around so that you don’t reach that state.  She told us to keep our pantries stocked so we could always throw together a healthy meal.

Looking back, I see now that if I had a cheese stick and an apple or a handful of nuts before deciding to order in, I might have been able to put together a healthy meal from my pantry or I might have ordered a salad instead of the sandwich and fries. Another choice would have been to make a quick run to The Fresh Market to pick up a rotisserie chicken and some salad greens.

Oh well, I ‘ve learned my lesson.  Next time, I’ll be better prepared.  Keep an eye out for future posts on making better choices and being prepared for anything.

Peace

P.S. I still haven’t gone food shopping yet, but, using the items in my pantry, I managed to make L.J.’s Salmon Cakes and sweet potato fries using the Cajun spice mix contained in a recipe listed in Metabolic Cooking’s 9 Cookbook Set (affiliate link)* It was yummy.

 

  • This post contains an affiliate link.  If you click on it and purchase something, I will receive compensation.  You should know that I only link to products that I like and believe in and may have even bought myself.

 

 

Easy Ways to Get 7 Vegetable Servings A Day

In my quest to lose weight the last time, I started seeing a doctor of Chinese medicine referred to me by a friend.  During my first visit, she told me, among other things,  that I had to start eating 7 to 11 fruit and vegetable servings per day.  I looked at her as if she were crazy, but I decided to give it a try.  What did I have to lose but weight and years of not so healthy eating habits?

At first, it seemed impossible to even conceive of how to eat all those servings of fruits and vegetables in a single day.  But then she handed me a sheet that said a serving equals a half cup of any vegetable or fruit, except lettuce, spinach, cabbage, collard greens, kale and the like.  You need a full cup of those leafy veggies to make a serving since they are made of mostly water.  A serving can also be a piece of fruit (i.e. an apple, a pear, a plum, a nectarine) or 15 grapes or 6 baby carrots and so on and so forth.

When I left the doctor’s office, my mind was reeling. Like the psychotic Type A person that I can be, I feverishly researched the issue, tormented myself and experimented until I finally figured out how to add 7-11 fruit and vegetable servings into my day without becoming a vegetarian and without it becoming a full time job.

The first thing I did was to get on the web and look for vegetable recipes. I knew that I wouldn’t be happy eating salads every single day and that I’d need some help in that regard.  I discovered some great vegetable recipes online that I modified to suit my tastes.  I’ve since discovered great recipes and ways to incorporate more fruits, veggies, and metabolism stoking herbs, spices and dressings into my diet in great cookbooks like: Metabolic Cooking 9 Cookbook Set (affiliate link).*

After finding some vegetable filled recipes that I thought I would like, I had to make a plan to increase my fruit and vegetable intake. Now, I have it down to a science.  Back then, on a typical day, I’d have at least two servings of fruit before lunch.  I would make a large fruit salad on Sunday, divide it into  5 one cup sized plastic containers, and throw a container into my lunch bag to eat as a mid-morning snack at work.  I’d also throw in a snack sized baggie containing 12 baby carrots (that’s 2 servings) or celery sticks and hummus into my lunch bag for afternoon snacking.

Now, I have a smoothie for breakfast most mornings which usually contains three fruit servings and skip the midmorning snack.

Back then, if I made a turkey wrap for lunch, I’d add a cup of baby spinach and a sliced plum tomato to my deli thin turkey meat and dijon mustard to bulk up the wrap (that’s 2 servings of veggies right there). Now, I might forgo the wrap and eat soup and a salad instead or meat or fish with a two serving size side of veggies.

On the weekends, I’d make a vat of Curried Vegetable Soup or a pureed vegetable soup I could pair with meals all week long. A cup of pureed carrot or butternut squash soup, for example, contains two or more vegetable servings.

Sides of veggies are the easiest to make. For example, you can peel some carrots, cut them diagonally into two inch pieces, throw them into a bowl with a little olive oil and seasonings, coat them,  then throw them onto a sheet pan, roast them in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes and throw a tablespoon of chopped dill over them when they are still warm (or not) and you will be a happy child.  You can do the same thing with sweet potatoes (no need to peel and no dill).

You can take a 16 oz. bag of frozen peas and carrots or mixed vegetables, throw them into a pot with a little chicken broth, garlic powder, onion powder, and Goya Adobo seasoning (or a little salt) to taste and you have tasty side veggies to go with the rest of your dinner.  You can take frozen broccoli, blanch it boiling water for a few minutes, take it out with a slotted spoon and throw it into a bowl of ice water to keep it green and stop the cooking, drain it and then throw it into a saucepan to saute with a little olive oil, chopped shallot (or onion) and garlic and seasonings to taste.

The point is that it doesn’t have to be hard, time consuming or even ridiculously expensive to work 7-11 daily fruit and vegetable servings into your diet.  Frozen veggies give you the same bang for your buck as fresh, and canned pineapple works as well as fresh (as long as its not packed in heavy syrup). Organic and/or locally grown veggies and fruit are best.  I get my organic frozen fruit and veggies from Cosco to get a little bang for my buck.

Eating 7-11 servings of fruits and vegetables every day helped me to shed 60lbs the first time. It also gave my skin a healthy glow and helped me look years younger than I am. I didn’t know why then, but I do now.  Fruits and vegetables are full of water and fiber, which made me feel full and satisfied with fewer calories.  Also, they are full of much needed vitamins and antioxidants which, together with the fiber, helped me detoxify my system. The reward for this effort is youthful glowing skin, better health, increased energy, and weight loss.

I just started this healthy habit again and I already notice a difference in how I feel.  Give it a try.  Start with one of the veggie recipes contained in this free report called 10 Quick and Easy Fat Torching Recipes.

Peace

 

*This post contains an affiliate link.  If you click on it and make a purchase, I will be compensated.

Product Review: Fat Diminisher System

Hi there:

I just bought a new weight loss system created by certified personal trainer, military veteran, and life coach, Wes Virgin called the “Fat Diminisher System.”

Fat Diminisher System

In his book, Wes Virgin debunks many misconceptions held by most of us about weight loss. He says that we’re not doomed to be overweight or unhealthy as a result of genetics and we don’t have to exercise two hours a day to achieve a healthy weight.  He says that the main reason people struggle to lose weight and keep it off is that they often make the mistake of eating foods that slow down their metabolisms because they lack the nutrients and enzymes needed to keep it working at an optimal rate. The “Fat Diminisher System” is designed to fix that issue and ensure that your metabolism runs the way that it should, all the time.

The system includes:

  • A wealth of information regarding diets, weight loss, hormones and body chemistry.
  • A list and detailed discussion of the minerals and herbs that a person needs to speed up their metabolism and slow down aging.
  • Information about seemingly healthy vegetables and other foods that could be damaging your health and making you fat.
  • Healthy and tasty smoothie recipes that can help to eliminate toxins from your body.
  • Tips on how to increase your metabolism within just a few days.
  • Tips for how to jumpstart your body’s natural fat-burning cycle and shed belly fat.
  • An easy to follow four week kickstart program complete with meal plans, recipes and schedules.
  • Access to workout videos designed to  accelerate your fat burning efforts.
  • A list of cooking ingredients that are ideal for getting rid of belly fat (Based on things that are commonly found in your kitchen).
  • Useful information about other important topics such as the psychology of getting fit and the different foods that can boost your sex drive…

Overall, I like the Fat Diminisher System because it takes a holistic approach to weight loss.  Also, the program is easy to follow, and doesn’t require the use of expensive supplements and premade shakes. I’m going to give it a try.

You can get more information about the Fat Diminisher System here.

Peace

Starting Over on My Healthy Living Journey

Hi there:

I never thought I’d be starting over on my healthy living journey. If you followed my old blog, you might remember me as the budding author who quit smoking cold turkey and managed to lose sixty pounds using Weightwatchers and guidance provided to me by a doctor of Chinese medicine. The information and guidance I received from those two sources were very effective tools for helping me get into “fighting shape” as some like to call it. That term always evokes images in my mind of prizefighters going at it in a boxing ring. But I digress . . .

Losing the weight was fantastic. It changed my life. I had more energy. I had more self-confidence. I started dating more. But the best thing for me was that, for the first time in more than twenty years, I was able to shop in the Misses department of any store instead of being limited to plus size stores or the plus size sections of stores.  I was like a kid in a candy store.

Well, a lot has happened over the past two or so years – most of it wonderful. I published two romantic suspense novels that are getting great ratings on Amazon: Just Dreams and Dreams Deferred, and I’m coming out with a third book in January, 2016.  I left my job as a partner at a large law firm and opened up my own practice. I toured the country attending writers’ conferences, festivals and trade shows. I even met a great guy two years ago and we’ve been together ever since. A very sad thing happened during that time as well, namely, the death of my mother.

What with all the effort to get my new practice and my book publishing businesses off the ground, traveling, and dealing with the emotional and legal aftermath of my mother’s death, I fell into old bad habits. I stopped working out, I ate out and ordered in all the time and made unhealthy food choices, and I stopped going to Weightwatchers meetings. The end result is that I gained all the weight back and more. I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been and, to make matters worse, I’ve started developing weight related ailments like high blood pressure.

It’s an old story. We’ve all had this issue. A diet can only work for so long. If you don’t change your lifestyle and your mindset and maintain healthy habits, you’re not going to be able to maintain your results.

When my writing career began to take off, I retired my old blog and moved all my posts to my author website. That was a mistake – the first of many I’ve made over the past few years. I realize now that I need a separate space that’s dedicated to chronicling my healthy living journey. I need a space where those who want to follow my journey can come to learn what’s working for me and what’s not and maybe get a bit of knowledge and inspiration. So now, I’m back.

May you enjoy the ride.

 Peace.