healthy eating

Hold the sugar, please.

In continuing my efforts to become a better me, I have chosen to stop eating sugar.  I don’t mean that I can’t have any sugar because that’s not really practical.  I have stopped eating added sugars.  For 5 weeks now, I have been eating less than 45 grams of sugar a day.  It’s usually between 20 and 25 grams per day.  From what I have read, 4.2 grams of granulated sugar equals one teaspoon.  So I am averaging 4 or 5 teaspoons a day which is what the American Heart Association recommends for a woman. It doesn’t seem like that’s a difficult request but they do not distinguish between natural and added sugars.  It all counts toward the same total grams of sugar.

How did this start?  This was not something I planned on doing.  In fact, I was certain I would never give up my candy, soda or cupcakes.  Man do I love a good cupcake!  It started one weekend when I ran out of candy and was too lazy to go to the store.  I realized on Sunday that I had already gone two days without candy so I thought, this is a good time to stop eating sugar.

In the first week I was astonished by how much sugar was in EVERYTHING.  What can I eat that doesn’t have sugar?  Pizza?  No.  Cereal?  Only occasionally and yes, it tastes no different than eating the box.  “Healthy” granola bars?  Are you freakin’ kidding me?  No!  Juice, of any kind?  Absolutely not.  I realized quickly that it was pretty much impossible to eat no sugar and be healthy.  I’m sure there will be people that argue with me about that, but I think you should still have fruit once in a while and fruit has quite a bit of sugar naturally.  Also, I do not want to ingest to many artificial sweeteners.  I doubt that is healthy.  So in this first week, I resigned myself to the idea that I will never again eat candy, dessert or drink soda.  No pizza either but, as you will read later, that changes.  The good news is that you no longer crave those things.  You may want it when you see it, but for the most part, you realize that is a want, not a need and you don’t have to indulge.

During week two, I noticed that I wasn’t as tired during the day.  Probably because my sleep is deeper and better quality.  I don’t toss and turn as often or wake up every two hours like I used to.  In fact, during the 3rd week, I slept straight through the night sometimes.  This may not be amazing to some, but I have never slept through the night unless I was sick or something.  I was a bit perky and hyper during this time period as well.

I think it was week three that I thought I was sweating more than normal and some people do a 21 day sugar detox so maybe I was sweating things out.  I also noticed that I would just keep working and forget to take my lunch because I wasn’t actually hungry yet.  One word of caution here.  When you are not eating sugar and your tank runs out, you are out and need to find food fast.  The alternative is one cranky individual that can no longer function properly.  I was pretty sure I was going to faint in the middle of the Halloween store because I didn’t stop to eat before going in and it was larger than expected.  It was my own fault.  I knew it was past lunch time and that I needed to eat, but wasn’t feeling the hunger pangs yet.  Lesson learned.

Week four and five have been smooth sailing.  No side affects and I’ve discovered that I can make homemade pizza that has much less sugar, but still tastes pretty good.  In the future I may try to make the dough and sauce myself, but for now, I look for marinara with the fewest grams of sugar per serving and pre-made pizza dough from the store.  Also with the lowest grams of sugar, per serving, that I can find.  It’s not ideal, but it’s a nice treat.

If you have tried to stop eating so much sugar or know a great, low sugar recipe for barbecue sauce, feel free to share in the comments.  I would love to hear all about it.

 

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Delicious, baked baby potatoes

Hello, food lovers!  They say to blog about what you know so, for my first attempt at blogging, I have decided to share my favorite potatoes.  Seasoned baby potatoes baked in the oven.  So easy and so delicious!1-DSC_0015 (1)

  1. Preheat the oven to 425.  While the oven is heating up you have plenty of time to prepare the potatoes.
  2. Foil the baking pan.  I usually cook for one or two people so a small cake pan is big enough.
  3. Wash those babies!  I’m talking the potatoes.
  4. Dice.  Depending on the size of the potato, I usually cut them in fourths.  You can cut them smaller if you want your potatoes crispier, just make sure you are checking them regularly because it will take less time to cook through.
  5. Cover in oil and seasoning.  To do this, I put my potatoes in a plastic container that has a lid.  I then pour in about a tablespoon of olive oil.  The seasoning depends on what you like and how many potatoes you are cooking.  I usually cut up about 10 baby potatoes and add just under 1 teaspoon of seasoning.  I personally use McCormick’s Grill Mates, Montreal Steak Seasoning.  I like to have a minimalist kitchen so I’m a big fan of one seasoning that works for many foods.  I lid the container and shake the potatoes until they are evenly coated.
  6. Pour the coated potatoes into baking pan.

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Once the oven is preheated, place the pan of potatoes in the oven on the top or middle rack and set the timer for 35 minutes.  After 35 minutes, poke a few potatoes with a fork to make sure they are cooked before removing.  They should feel fairly soft on the inside, but crispy on the outside.

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Once cooked to your liking, remove from the oven and enjoy!  They are steaming hot on the inside so I recommend letting them sit for a few minutes before eating.  My final word of advice is, don’t be like me and forget to turn off the oven!

Thanks for reading and please stop by again soon!