Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Two months of clean eating PLUS a Giveaway!!

We're coming up to the two month mark of our new real, whole food diet. Things are getting easier. I have go to ideas for meals and snacks. I know what brands I like to buy when I'm at the store and I don't have to spend hours researching labels. I've improved a lot of my cooking skills, too!

Speaking of cooking-- I have to admit that there have been a handful of meals that have turned out not-so-great! Derek mentioned once that the ratio of ending up with a cooking fail was higher now that we're eating differently... and he's so right! It's amazing how when you cram things full of fat, sugar, and artificial ingredients that they taste good no matter what! It's a completely different skill to make tasty foods using natural ingredients! But, it can be done. On more than once occasion, Derek has said, "This is the best fill-in-the-blank I've ever had!". Mainly fish, but also about the burritos with homemade tortillas, lasagna, and even veggies.

Several people have asked about the side effects from our new eating plan other than just knowing that we're eating better foods. Here's a few from the top of my head.

  • Derek and I have each lost over 10% of our body weight and have each gone down 2-3 pant sizes. I really never looked to see a change in the kids in this area because my priority has been to just create good eating habits early. I took Jackson into his well child check up today and his BMI (height and weight ratio) has gone down significantly compared to previous years to the point where his doctor was concerned if he was eating enough. I assured her that he eats plenty-- it's just minimally processed and healthy foods!
  • Energy!!! Now the kids always have boundless energy, but Derek and I each relied on caffeine to get through the day. Breakfast, lunch, and especially to get us through the afternoon slump. We have no caffeine and no afternoon crash. 
  • For a few years, I have had regular feet pain. I have been much more active in the last two months, yet my feet hardly ache. I can wear flip flops, boots, or even go barefoot sometimes whereas before it would have made my feet hurt for days.
  • Derek and I both enjoy the feeling of being in control of our cravings. In fact, we rarely ever have them and if we do-- it's for different foods than before. My brain and body aren't being controlled by the artificial ingredients and sugar overload in processed foods. Have you read the research about Oreo's being more addictive than other drugs? I stop eating when I'm not hungry anymore and it's not a challenge. But for example, Jackson requested McDonalds for his birthday. We haven't been in over two months, so I took the kids. We shared some chicken nuggets, french fries, along with oranges that I packed. We ate decent portions and we were all full. But all afternoon I was hungry... I wanted chocolate. I wanted salty chips. Carbs, carbs, carbs! I just couldn't get full and I snacked all afternoon. I am SO glad that is not my normal anymore. 
  • Freedom: we can eat anything we have in the house and not feel guilty, including: dark chocolate, cheese and crackers, nuts (we have them hidden so Jackson doesn't accidentally eat them!), popcorn with real butter!
Speaking of butter, cheese, and other dairy... we still eat it, we still love it! What's changed now with our new eating habits? Well, we buy full fat cheese, yogurt, sour cream, and cottage cheese. I'm not a fan of whole milk, so we still use 2%. We also opt for organic these days. Organic dairy comes from grass fed cows, which is what cows were designed to eat. Michael Pollan, cites that "you are what you eat eats, too!"  
A diet of grass means much healthier fats (more omega-3s and conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA; fewer omega-6s and saturated fat) in their meat, milk and eggs, as well as appreciably higher levels of vitamins and antioxidants.
Earlier this month, Rumiano Cheese Company sent me some coupons to try some of their cheeses! I eagerly visited Whole Foods and picked up a block of Pepper Jack and some Medium Cheddar slices. Notice that the cheddar cheese is white? It's because cheese is naturally white and that other cheeses dye it to make it orange.

I grated the block of cheese to make a delicious addition to some omelets. I've used the cheese slices to make grilled sandwiches and also as an easy snack to enjoy with crackers. Not only is it delicious, it's feels good to know that I'm eating the super nutritious foods made from animals that were also fed the most nutritious foods!

Rumiano Cheese Company has supplied me with five free coupons for cheese to giveaway to one lucky reader! These cheeses are available at Whole Foods Markets, so hopefully you have one close by!  Plus, the winner will be entered into The Big Cheese Sweepstakes-- you could win a full year's supply of cheese! 

Use the widget below to enter (just be patient to let it load!).

Disclosure: I received free coupons to review the cheese for this post. All comments and opinions are my own.


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