We are on to week #2! I hope no one is disappointed about their weight loss this week! At my work everyone did a great job! Some people lose between 1-2 pounds, with one person losing 8.6 pounds! No one gained more than a pound or so, which is great given the big holiday! Maintaining your weight during a holiday is really a big accomplishment.
Bring on the Super swaps!
I swapped C.R.A.P. for superfoods and you can too! Eating better means eating more superfoods – they give you the wholesome nutrition for a slimmer, healthier, more energized body. I’ve also learned that the most successful long-term changes happen when you enjoy what you’re doing. (Stop the diet mentality!)
Last week, we talked about the C.R.A.P. that is in our diet and things to look for. We also talked about the right proportions for blood sugar and craving control (30/30/40 rule). Today I’m going to talk about simple and nutritious swaps you can make to satisfy your cravings and still eat what you what to eat, but in a healthier way. (It’s all about choosing the SANE foods over the INSANE foods per last week’s discussion). Another way of looking at this is choosing nutrient dense foods over calorie dense/nutrient poor foods.
Superfoods are foods (mostly plants) that deliver the maximum dose of antioxidants, vitamins, healthy fats, minerals, and other good stuff your body needs to thrive. When you do a “superswap” you add something better and drop something of lower quality. And by quality, I’m not just talking about price or brand names or organic (organic cookies, cakes, and candy is still cookies, cakes, and candy!). I mean things that benefit your body and mind. (It may mean you chose organic, grass-fed meat over conventional meat because it’s higher in omega 3’s, which decrease inflammation, or it may mean substituting wheat pasta for spaghetti squash). The goal is to think healthier and make healthier choices.
Here are a few health superswaps to get you started:
Note: Just because a food is a superfood doesn’t mean you can eat all you want. For example, nuts are a very healthy food with healthy fats, fiber, and protein, BUT they still have calories. Nuts are calorically dense so should not be eaten mindlessly without portioning. Even though a calorie is not a calorie, calories still matter (or rather net calories matter, which are the calories not used in digesting the food). 100 calories of nuts would look very small compared to 100 calories of kale or fruit. But what makes nuts so good is that even a small amount helps sate hunger. Try to stick to 1-2 small handfuls per day. Peanuts and pistachios with the shell can be self-limiting and helpful for weight loss. With that said, many nutrient dense foods have little to no calories, such as non-starchy vegetables. Feel free to eat as much as you want of these. A good strategy for second helpings would be to limit to only the veggies.
This outside the box: Are you craving pizza and only “real” pizza will satisfy your craving? Sometimes we have a craving and despite our best efforts to substitute, we can’t shake it. Sometimes these cravings even cause us to “go off diet” or give up on the “diet” all together. Here is a way to have your cake and eat it too – or rather have your craving and stay on plan. Make a green base and put whatever you are craving on top of that green base.
“Spaghetti” and Meatballs with Tomato Sauce
Serves 4. Prep time: 15 minutes. Cook time: 30 minutes.
Dandelion Pumpkin Seed Pesto
Tastes great on Spaghetti squash). Makes about 1 cup
Note: I often sub other greens for the dandelion greens for different types of pesto (i.e. basil and sage) May use half basil and half spinach to stretch the basil if you don’t have enough. I have also substituted any type of roasted squash seeds for the pumpkin seeds. Have fun with it! I’ve never made a bad pesto.
For all you Chinese food fans out there, try this recipe instead of fried rice: http://www.shape.com/healthy-eating/healthy-recipes/cauliflower-fried-rice-bowl-will-make-you-forget-about-takeout
Wishing you all a great week! xox