Wednesday, December 31, 2008

An Update

Sorry for not posting much recently. I've been extremely busy, working long hours and traveling most of the time. I thought I'd have two weeks at home over the holidays but due to a death in the family, I've been on the road and away from the Internet. Next week, I'll be in Mexico, working long hours. I'll try to post when I find time.

Regardless of the turmoil, I've managed to stay on my plan for the most part. I had planned on taking off Christmas Eve and Christmas but started off the diet the day before Christmas Eve. But, I've now stuck with it even though I've been visiting family and eating meals (or portions of meals) that I had no control over the content. This evening, after a funeral, my Grandparents ordered Kentucky Fried Chicken and I went out instead. There was enough people there that I don't think they were put off by my leaving early.

I'm spending New Years Even with my brother's family at a hotel. We're calling it a New Years Eve swim party because all of our kids are currently playing in the pool (I'm in the lobby typing this). My wife just called asking where the heck I'm at... so I guess I need to wrap this up.

Anyhow, around Christmas, I weighed myself and had lost 18 pounds. I'm at a sickening 293, far above what I weighed a year ago. This time I'll need to focus on establishing a workable maintenance plan.

Regardless, I'd like to wish all of my readers a happy new year! And, I look forward to meeting all of the new folks who's new years resolution is to lose weight.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Eggnog - 8 net carbs per serving

The holiday season is here. One of my family's traditions was always to have eggnog on Christmas Eve. I mixed up a batch last night to try my hand at making a low-carb version. I must say that I like it as much as the high-carb version.

5 servings @ 8 net carbs each.

4 cups Hood Calorie Countdown Dairy Beverage
1 cup heavy whipping cream (not whipped)
1 cup equivalent to sugar (I used 1/4 t. Sweetzfree)
7 large egg yokes
1 T. vanilla
Nutmeg (optional)

Add all ingredients to saucepan on medium high. Whisk (or use beaters) while cooking, making sure to keep it moving so as to not scorch the bottom for 7 to 10 minutes until thickened. To see if it is done, insert a spoon and if a thin film sticks to the spoon, it is ready. Remove from heat and continue whisking occasionally as it cools. Then chill in refrigerator for 8 hours or more. If desired, after cooling, add alcohol. Serve with a little nutmeg sprinkled on top.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Pumpkin Soup - 8 net carbs per serving

This recipe for Pumpkin Soup was pulled from "Winsor Pilates Low-Carb Cookbook". My wife and I made it for dinner tonight and it was great.

4 servings @ 8 net carbs each.

1 can (4 oz.) diced green chilies
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup cilantro
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
1 can (14 oz) chicken broth (I used water & bullion)
1/2 cup water
1 t. cumin
1/2 t. chili powder
1/4 t. garlic powder (I used diced garlic)
1/8 t. ground red pepper
Additional sour cream (optional)

In food processor or blender process green chilies, cilantro, and sour cream.
In sauce pan, combine all other ingredients and bring to boil. Add 1/2 the sour cream and green chili mixture. Reduce heat to medium and simmer at least five minutes. Stir occasionally.
Pour into bowls and top each with small dollops of remaining green chilies and additional sour cream.

Coconut Battered Shrimp - 0 net carbs

Lightly battered coconut shrimp is easy and has virtually no net carbs.

Aloha Nu Coconut Flour
Raw shrimp, pealed and de-veined
Vegetable Oil (or other)

Heat oil in fryer or sauce pan (Med. High). In a bowl, beat egg. Put coconut flour in another bowl. Dip shrimp in egg then into coconut flour. Fry until golden brown. Salt to taste.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Dining Out on Low Carb

Eating on the road seems to be one of my major themes. At least for the next year it will be mostly U.S. domestic travel rather than international. I'm spending about 75% of my time right now living in a hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. As such, I eat out most of the time. Lunch is extremely difficult as most of my co-workers would be happy at Taco Bell or McDonalds. So, I wind up being the difficult one with only about 3 local options that are guaranteed not to talk long. Option 1 is Chicago Gyros which has an incredible amount of mystery meat on top of a salad. Option 2 is a Chinese buffet where I tend toward the broccoli and meat stir-fry the carb count of which I haven't got a clue. And Option 3 is Bar-B-Cutie which has an awesome selection and is fast. I'd like to see Bar-B-Cutie franchises spread as it's economical and filling even on low-carb. I think it'd go over in just about any part of the country.

Dinner presents many more options. The only annoying part is that I have to look picky and negotiate lots of substitutions. For example, asking "what can I substitute for my bread, and potato?". Whenever you ask for substitutions, expect either the waiter or the cook to screw it up.

More than anything, after being on low-carb again for just under two weeks, I am already getting really sick and tired of salads. Argh! But there are often no other options at some restaurants.

Another peeve is company functions where I have very limited choices. 2 nights ago, I was at such an event. We had apostatizes including fried cheese, nachos, fried mushrooms, etc. This was followed by a variety of sandwiches with fresh fried potato chips. And that was followed by dessert. So, I had to hang around all evening immediately following work pretending not to be starving watching everyone else eat and guzzle beer as I slowly picked the breading off my cheese sticks and then ate a slice of lunch meat off my sandwich and finally watched everyone eat the decedent desserts.

On the bright side... Last night, upon returning to Lexington, my wife and I went to a pizza and pasta place called Puccinni's Smiling Teeth. Puccinni's has a small low-carb section on their menu with two dishes that are so incredibly delicious and filling that I could go back and eat there every day.

chicken torino chicken breasts with pesto, bubbling Monterrey jack, toasted pecans &
bacon, sautéed mushrooms 10.95

baked roman holiday two chicken breasts capped
with thin canadian ham, alfredo sauce, provolone & bacon 11.50

Locations are in Indianapolis, West Lafayette Indiana, Lexington Kentucky, Louisville Kentucky, and Bucceto's in Bloomington Indiana.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Sausage and Sauerkraut - 5 net carbs per serving

Tonight for dinner, I fixed up a batch of sausage and sauerkraut. It's extremely easy to make and also low carb. The actual carb counts will vary depending on the brand of sausage and sauerkraut that you choose. Proportions are up to you.

kielbasa sausage

Cut up sausage into slices no more than one inch thick. Brown in a skillet on medium high, turning as necessary. Once sausage is browned on both sides, add sauerkraut. Turn heat down to medium and cook, stirring occasionally until heated through.

Progress Report

Well, it's only day six of being back to low-carb. When I started, I was up to 311.6 pounds... This morning, I weighed only 301. I'm sure that some but not all is water weight. Either way, it's a good ego boost that will help keep me going. As long as I see progress, it's easy to stick with the low-carb life. It's after six months or so when the weight loss slows down that it becomes very frustrating.

I'm so angry with myself for having gained back so much of the 85 pounds that I lost (now over a year ago). While eating carbs, I was keeping it off pretty good while walking around Paris, France. But when I returned home in July the pounds started adding up really fast. My diet was horrendous. The more carbs that I ate, the more carbs that I craved. The funny thing is that if I keep my carbs extremely low for at least a few days then all of the carb cravings go away.

My wife made some excellent spinach & feta quiche the other day. She started with a base recipe from a diet book and made it better. I'll try to post her recipe and maybe some pictures within the next few weeks.