Friday, April 27, 2012

Jack Up Your Jello

One of my secret weapons against hunger is my "Jacked Up Jello". Essentially, I have added a fiber supplement to it, which gives it more staying power. I have one at night and it helps me stick to my caloric goals.

You will need:

1 0.60 oz size of Sugar Free Jello (it makes 8, 1/2 cup servings)
1 cup clear soluble fiber supplement powder(ingredient=Dextrin)*
3 cups of boiling water
4 cups of cold water**
7 containers/cups to hold the individual portions (or more if you want smaller portions)

Dump Jello packet and soluble fiber supplement in to a bowl. Mix with a fork or whisk. Add 3 cups of boiling water and stir well until dissolved. Add 4 cups of cold water and stir. Divide evenly in to 7 containers and refrigerate.

And now you have a some Jacked Up Jello.


* You may want to work up to this amount. Try adding 1/4 cup first, then experiment to see what your body can take. Save money by buying the store brand.

** Yes this is more water than the package suggests, but I have found I can stretch it out this far without dire consequences.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Go Back In Time

I have made a lot of product/service recommendations over the years. And I was interested to see if I still feel the same way about the products as I did back then. So let's go in to the time machine to re-visit 3 suggestions I have made.

1. Coromega Omega3 Squeeze, originally suggested in November 2011, I still love this product! I really do think it helps with joint pain (my pre-rain storm aches and pain have pretty much disappeared). I tried to double the dose, but didn't find much of a benefit, so I went back to one squeeze packet a day.

Update: June 2012 I didn't bring my Coromega with me on vacation and noticed that after 4 days my knee was killing me! It took about 4 days back home for the fish oil to do it's thing again. So yes, this works.

2. Townhouse Flip Side Pretzel Crackers, suggested in April 2008. As noted in the original post, I had a hard time resisting these crackers and they had little nutritional value, so I stopped buying them.

3. SwapADVD.com, originally suggested in July 2009. This site continues to be a winner. I just got a new (to me) exercise DVD last week.

So there you have it, 3 randomly selected suggestions and their updates. You are welcome.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Just Make It Stop (Update!)

It's been about 3 months since I switched birth control pills to stop crazy mood swings, food cravings and irritability and I'm happy to say there is only one side effect: happiness.

Yep, that's right. While the new pill does raise my blood sugar (so did the old one) everything else about it is fabulous. I was able to delete the "Sad Saturday" and "Wallop Wednesdays" warnings from my calendar. And I haven't put the skull and cross bones WARNING! magnet I created on the fridge (to remind my husband to be cautious around me) even once!

And I have decided that switching birth control pills is the second best medical decision of my life. #1 will always be going on an insulin pump, and #3 is taking fish oil. (I don't consider my emergency back surgery due to magically breaking my L6 disk a real choice, so it doesn't make the list.)

I had been scared to change because I thought the devil I knew was better than the one I didn't. Boy was I so very wrong. I'm glad I took that risk.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Soup It Up

In the winter, nothing warms me up and fills me up for lunch quite like soup. I have two creations that I go back to time and time again, and I thought I'd share them with you.

Curry It Up!

Add
1 cup Roasted Red Pepper & Tomato Soup (I like Pacific Natural Food) and 1/2 cup lightly rinsed chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans) to a microwave safe bowl and microwave until hot (or heat on the stove in a saucepan). Add curry powder to taste.

Add a serving of a whole grain side: slice of pumpernickel bread, whole grain tortilla chips, etc.

The beans add protein and fiber to the meal and pair nicely with the soup. Adding the curry takes the flavor up a notch without adding any calories, fat, or salt. It makes me warm, full, and has a nice sweet flavor to it.


Tasty Tomato & Tuna
1 cup Progresso High Fiber Creamy Tomato Basil Soup heated on the stove or in the microwave

and

3 oz of chunk white tuna, drained but otherwise plain piled on to 1 small tortilla or slice of whole grain bread topped with 1 slice cheddar cheese and toasted in the toaster. Top with fresh or dried basil.

The soup is a bit sweet for me, so the plain tuna evens it out. And again, it leaves me warm and full, and happy.

I also often follow up the warm portion of my lunch with a green salad or raw veggies.

These lunches are nutritious, easy, fast and they fill me up. All qualities I am looking for in my food.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Put It Back On Your List

In my purse, I keep a list of food choices for when I am out and about. This way, I can still make good food choices even at restaurants. (They also make various smart phone apps that do the same thing.)

But many times there are places that I cannot justify going to. Either the "food" is so far removed from actual food that I don't want to eat it, or the calories in the meals are just too high to bother. Two restaurants were on my "No Go!" list. Until now.

The Olive Garden

With superhuman size portions and blood sugar skyrocketing bread sticks, the last time I went, I tried to order off the kid's menu just to find something reasonable. But my waiter didn't cooperate. So I haven't been back in 3 years. But last week, friends wanted to go, so I checked out the nutrition facts again and was delighted to see something that looked yummy and met my caloric needs:
Venetian Apricot Chicken


At only 400 calories (dinner portion), and with two veggies, it was a winner for me. I asked for my own salad (dressing on the side saves 160 calories, skipping the cheese and croutons saves even more) and skipped the bread sticks (150 calories) and saved my hunger for the chicken. Which was really, really good.

Kenny and Zukes

A Portland, Oregon institution, Kenny and Zukes is a Jewish style deli that offers enormous portions. Martin and I tried sharing something once, and it was still too big for us. And afterwards, I felt bloated and ill. Recently, after being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, chef, Ken Gordon has created a "Healthier Options" portion of the menu. Trimmed down and full of whole grains and veggies, these choices are much more my style. And the nutrition facts are listed on their website.(Yay!)

I intend on rewarding them for their forward thinking menu by stopping by soon.

Update: On June 9, 2012 I finally got my butt over to Kenny & Zukes. The healthy burger was no longer on the menu (because no one was buying it) so I had the Chicken Toastie instead. It was really, really good! My husband had the Pastrami, and our friend had the turkey club. And they said the sandwiches were excellent.

----------

While very firmly on my "Go!" list, Chipotle has recently given me even more reason to like it by adding brown rice to their menu.

Things are getting better out there, we nutrition wise consumers just need to keep asking for it!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Give It What It Wants

I have noticed that after I am done eating, my body wants to keep chewing. I have eaten as slowly as possible, and have eaten appropriate portions, but my mouth wants to keep chewing. I'm often not even hungry anymore, but I still want to chew on something. I've tried drinking more water, which helps with fullness, but does nothing to satiate my desire to chew.

Until now ...

Orbit White bubblemint sugarfree gum.



I usually pick a traditional mint flavored gum, but this has a burst of sweetness that I really like. The feeling of "cracking" the gum open, along with the sweetness, and then the act of chewing something satisfies me every time. I've even been know to chew some before going to bed.

This one tweak has saved me on many occasions and I'm glad that I (impulse) purchased it!