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Low Carb Challenge!

August 24, 2011

Hello, my name is Jane and I am a carbaholic:

  • When I see an ad for a new whole grain cereal, my heart skips with joy
  • At restaurants I have to tag waiters to get a second, and sometimes third, bread basket refill
  • When I hear sad, happy, or any news, I reach for a bag of chips, popcorn, or cookies
  • Animal crackers are my number one pick at a vending machine, followed by Pop Chips
  • Pasta is my comfort food
  • I never have Wine and Cheese… It’s always Wine, Cheese and lots of Crackers
  • There is always room for dessert, no matter how big the main course

Carbs will be the end of me (or at least the end of my happy weight of 125 lbs). I’d be totally ok with it but my clothing has been feeling a bit tighter than usual. I can keep telling myself that it’s my buff muscles ripping through my jeans, but we all know it’s not true Smile with tongue out 

The best and quickest way for me to shrink the extra padding around my flesh is to reduce carbs.

When you look at the popular diets (weight watchers, zone, body for life, south beach, biggest loser) they all share the same key principles:

  • Abundant vegetables
  • Lean protein (poultry, fish, low fat dairy, lean red meat cuts but in moderation)
  • Legumes
  • Fruit (some types in moderation as they are high in sugar)
  • Whole grains (those high in natural fiber)

Most of the diets aim for at least 30% of calorie intake from protein.

I will need all the support I can get, so I want to invite my reader friends to join me in a Low Carb Challenge! For a week, I (along with a brave few) will vow to keep the nutrients ratio at 40% protein, 40% carbs and 20% fat; limit grain carbs to one serving (preferably before noon), eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, exercise regularly. The diet will be wholesome, nutritious, and homemade, amounting to ~1500 calories per day. We will stand together and fight mood cravings and sugar urges with high protein snacks of shakes, yogurt and cottage cheese. After a week, we will emerge feeling strong, powerful and lean, with our belts applauding our success.

My Sample Low Carb meal Plan:

  Mon, Wed, Fri Tue, Thu Sat, Sun
Breakfast 1 – 6am none light toast, 1 tbs PB, 1/2 banana (185) 2 slices of toast or pancakes, 1 tbs PB, 1 banana (330)
Breakfast 2- 9:00am
(300 – 375)
overnight oats (370) 
OR
Greek Yogurt, GoLean Kashi, Berries, Chia
(300)
3 egg whites, cheese, veggies, light toast
(165)
Greek Yogurt, GoLean Kashi, Berries, Chia (300)
Lunch – 12pm
(450)
Salad + 3 ounces of Chicken (250) 
Protein bar (200)
Salad + 3 ounces of Chicken (250)
Protein bar (200)
Salad + 3 ounces of Chicken
Protein bar (200)
Snack – 3:30pm
(200)
Cottage cheese 150g + peach or pear 1 cup Greek yogurt + berries TBD
Dinner – 6:30pm
(250)
4 ounces lean protein + veggies 4 ounces lean protein + veggies TBD
Dessert – 8:00pm (200) protein shake + fruit protein shake + fruit protein shake + fruit
       
Total: 1400-1500 calories    
Protein: ~130-150g (40%)    
Carbs: ~130-150g (40%)    
Fat: ~30-40g (40%)    

 

So what does the low carb day look like?

Breakfast: sundried tomato, spinach egg white omelet

The Trader Joe’s Sundried tomatoes are fantastic. They are not packed in oil, but still have a touch of freshness and moisture to them.

IMG_6116

I sautéed spinach and tomatoes for minute or so in the skillet on medium heat

IMG_6117

I beat up 3 egg whites with a touch of paprika, black pepper and sea salt

IMG_6118

About 5 minutes later once the bottom has solidified, I flipped the omelet and added 1 tbsp of fat free feta

IMG_6119

Fold and serve with toast and laughing cow cheese

IMG_6124

Lunch: Salad with spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, roasted turkey, feta and cranberries

IMG_6137

Snack: Creamy Peanut butter Think Thin bar (not my favorite, but it’s high in protein and I am out of Luna bars)

Snack: Cottage cheese, peach and cinnamon

IMG_6142

Dinner: Baked chicken with zucchini, onions, red peppers in marinara and mozzarella

The inspiration came from half a jar of leftover Marinara sauce from last week’s lasagna

IMG_6133

I chopped up 1.5lb of chicken breast, 2 zucchini, 1 red bell pepper, 1 small onion into a baking dish

IMG_6135

Then came seasoning (salt, pepper, garlic powder), the sauce, and 2 handfuls of light shredded mozzarella

IMG_6136

Cover with foil, bake at 375 degrees for 35 minutes, remove and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese

IMG_6148

Enjoy with a side of caprese salad on a bed of spinach

IMG_6153

And this is when my husband told me that I am such a good cook and he is so pleased with himself for picking well (I am not sure whether the complement was intended for me or him Smile ).

Dessert came in a big tub (and no, it was not ice cream)

IMG_6143

I still have to play around with the proportions of water, ice, fruit, and protein to make a perfectly-rich smoothie, but I liked the taste so far.

[Jane Asks]: Who is with me on the Low Carb Challenge?

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. August 25, 2011 9:01 pm

    If that is low carb, I can do that 🙂

  2. August 25, 2011 9:17 pm

    Yay! I still love my fruit and veggies, so I am not going to cut those out. Just keeping my grain down to 1-2 servings max.

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