A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (30)There’s a particular number I want to see on the scale when I visit my doctor on the 14th – and when I weighed last, I was 4 pounds away!  I’ll be honest, I’ve been living on salads and doing workouts 3 days a week – with extra reps.  I want this so much!

Here’s the deal…  while I’ve been towing the line, I do still on occasion sit and daydream about what I may do when I leave the doctor’s office.  I’ve thought of going to the Dollar Tree to get a candy bar.  I’ve thought of getting a bag of marshmallows.  I’ve considered so many possibilities, but as I said…  these are thoughts.  The bad news is…  thoughts become actions.  That’s when I sabotage my own efforts and get angry with myself.  😦

I know what I need to do.  I need to add to my artillery. I need to reinforce the hem of my determination with prayer and faith.  I also wrote a new poem.  I hope if you’re fighting a sugar addiction, it will encourage you to stay on track.toadallyI’ve read so many articles that talk about sugar addiction.  It’s more difficult to break free from sugar than to break free from drugs!  It’s true, sugar is the most addictive substance.  This sweet stuff not only wrecks blood glucose, but it’s the stuff that cancer cells feed on.  Sugar’s the stuff that really ruins arteries.  When they told us it was the fat in our diets – that was incorrect.  It’s the sugar that does the damage.  For so many reasons it is best to lower or stop consumption of sugar.

As for the new ammunition…  I have compiled a list that will help me stay focused when I’m shopping.  I plan to buy just the things on this list:

  • eggs
  • peanut butter with no hydrogenated oil
  • celery
  • nuts
  • carrot sticks
  • ranch dressing
  • blue cheese dressing
  • low-sodium deli meats
  • cream cheese
  • cottage cheese
  • cheddar cheese
  • Swiss cheese
  • pork rinds
  • sunflower seeds
  • low-sodium jerky
  • turkey pepperoni slices
  • mushrooms
  • turkey bacon
  • dill pickles
  • tuna
  • lettuce
  • cucumbers
  • 70% cocoa chocolate bar
  • beef
  • chicken
  • broccoli
  • onions
  • little smokies
  • Vienna sausages
  • bell peppers
  • Relish sweetened with Splenda
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Cauliflower

My appointment is Friday, so I’ll have some idea whether I’m going to reach my goal or not because I weigh on Wednesdays.  I’ve sure been working on getting there.  If I make it, the nurses at the doctor’s office may see me do a victory dance!  If I don’t make it, I’ll know that I came so close to goal and determine that I’ll do better next time.13419107_1228329117211567_3612524694099834881_n-2

KETO ZONE www.fb.com/KetoZone

I’m determined to get this weight off!  It’s really as easy as having low-carb food to eat when I get hungry.  Being prepared by having a well-stocked pantry and fridge is so important if I want to succeed.  God’s gonna help me do this!  🙂

 

 

NATIONAL HEAVENLY HASH DAY

TL 2-2 NATIONAL HEAVENLY HASH DAYYes, it’s called HEAVENLY, but if you have diabetes like me, this little treat packs a sugar PUNCH and should be eaten with extreme caution!  Even if you substituted Splenda for sugar, that would do very little to lessen the intensity of the sweetness.2-2 SWEET

Heavenly Hash Bars

Makes approximately 12 squares or 16 clusters; can be doubled

1 cup sugar
1 cup evaporated milk
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
16 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or pure vanilla extract
2 cups roasted, salted almonds, kept whole
2 cups miniature marshmallows

Line an 8-inch square baking dish with parchment paper with enough excess hanging over the sides of the pan to use as “handles”; spray paper with cooking spray.

Combine the sugar, evaporated milk, and corn syrup in a medium-sized, heavy saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking often, and continue boiling the mixture until it reaches 218°F to 220°F on an instant read thermometer, 5 to 8 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let cool for 2 minutes. Fold in chocolate and vanilla and stir until melted. Let cool for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, then fold in the nuts and marshmallows.

Transfer the chocolate mixture to the prepared baking dish and spread evenly with a silicone spatula. Refrigerate the candy until firm, at least two hours. Using the parchment paper handles, remove the candy from the baking dish and cut into squares. (It helps to use a knife dipped in hot water.)

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Pull 5 to 10 minutes prior to serving.

Recipe Notes:

To make clusters instead of bars: using a spring-form ice cream scoop, drop round clusters onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper or a Silpat. Refrigerate until hardened, at least 1 hour. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator; pull out 30 minutes before serving.

If you indulge, ENJOY!  🙂

NATIONAL PEANUT BUTTER LOVER’S DAY

TL 1-24 NATIONAL PEANUT BUTTER LOVER'S DAY

1-24 DADDY AND PEANUT BUTTER

This is one of my favorite holidays, NATIONAL PEANUT BUTTER LOVER’S DAY!!!  Did you know it takes about 540 peanuts to make a 12-ounce jar of peanut butter?  In our house, we have the peanut butter with no hydrogenated oils, which means there is no trans fat.  There is still a need to watch the serving size because they all use palm oil, but it’s more healthy if it is not hydrogenated.  Also, if the label says Peanut Butter Spread, it’s not the same as Peanut Butter.  Read labels carefully.  

How do you eat peanut butter?  I like to mix 2 Tbs. of peanut butter with 2 Tbs. of sugar-free honey and use it to dip apple slices.  There was a time I bought caramel dip for apple slices, but there is a ton of sugar in it and I needed to come up with a more healthy alternative.

LF PEANUT BUTTER SF CHOCOLATE SYRUP APPLE DIP

I like to use recipes for cookies that have no flour of gluten in them.  I found this one for peanut butter cookies.

http://youtu.be/XqPOdhc0E74

As usual, I substitute the white sugar with Splenda.  If you use a peanut butter with no hydrogenated oil, that makes this a perfectly healthy cookie!

 No man in the world has more courage than the man who can stop after eating one peanut. – Channing Pollock

Sometimes there is nothing better than an old-fashioned peanut butter and jelly sandwich!  I heard a nutritionist say that there is nothing as balanced as that.  There is protein, carbohydrates and a little sugar to keep your blood sugar from bottoming out.  Since I have a problem with high blood sugar, I choose to have a sugar-free jelly.  Smucker’s sugar-free apricot spread is my favorite.  I also use a 9-grain bread instead of white bread because it doesn’t cause my blood sugar to spike.

OK – I just viewed this and it grossed me out.  I like peanut butter, and I like coffee (you KNOW I do) – but…  peanut butter coffee???  Oh yeah – no, that’s never happening!

http://youtu.be/RfhOSXOeF7M

I really don’t venture out and experiment with peanut butter like that.  Um…  no.  Besides, I’m not sure you can trust someone who says he has a glass of coffee instead of a cup.  Jus’ sayin’…

Peanut Butter with no hydrogenated oils is a healthy source of protein, but remember a serving size is only 1 Tablespoon – so it packs a nutritional punch!  It’s probably a bad idea to sit in front of the TV and mindlessly eat it straight from the jar.  I don’t know how anyone could do that anyway – I mean, wouldn’t it get stuck to the roof of your mouth?  :-/

 

 

 

 

 

 

NATIONAL KREME FILLED DONUT DAY

TL 9-14 NATIONAL KREME FILLED DONUT DAY

I asked my group, A Second Helping of Wellness…  with a Dash of Humor & a Pinch of Faith:  What is your favorite flavor of Kreme filled donut? 

One person said whipped cream and everyone else said Boston cream!  Am I the only one who wonders what the difference is between Boston cream and Bavarian cream?

Also known as Crème Bavaroise or simply Bavarois, Bavarian cream is a dessert that is flavoured with liqueur and thickened with gelatine or isinglass. It is a classic dessert that is rumoured to have been invented by chef Marie-Antoine Carême. It is said to have been named thus in the name of a distinguished visiting Bavarian, such as a Wittelsbach in the 19th century.

Bavarian cream consists of heavy cream, gelatin, sugar, vanilla bean, whipped cream and eggs.  Boston cream donuts are a round, solid, yeast risen donut with chocolate frosting and a creamy vanilla flavored custard filling!  It’s like eating a mini Boston cream pie!

The Boston cream donut was designated the official donut of Massachusetts in 2003, after the Boston cream pie itself was chosen as the state dessert in 1996.

I know some of you want a healthier alternative to the traditional donut!  I found a link for you to look at.  Hey – I’m in that canoe too – so I understand where you’re comin’ from.

http://www.healthfulpursuit.com/2014/02/boston-cream-donuts-gluten-free-paleo/

Now for the rest of society…  Krispy Kreme and Dunkin’ Donuts both have amazing Boston Cream Donuts – I won’t lie. 

https://www.krispykreme.com/menu/doughnuts

http://www.dunkindonuts.com/content/dunkindonuts/en/menu/food/bakery/donuts/donuts.html?DRP_FLAVOR=Boston%20Kreme%20Donut

We have a local mom & pop donut shop here in Wichita that makes very good cream donuts – and they seem to be bigger on crunch and smaller on sugar, which pleases my palette very much.  I don’t eat much sugar, so a little bit goes a long way!

https://youtu.be/q3GUNWz0J4M

Whether you decide to make the healthy version of cream filled donuts or snag one that is not so healthy, don’t forget the coffee to dunk it in!

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (15)

So…  am I the only one who wants to know how LITTLE exercise I can do and still see results???  Hey, I’m just being honest.  I wish I enjoyed exercise, but the fact is, I really do not like it.  I’ve tried everything to try to “distract” myself from the task at hand (TV, music, etc.) – but the fact remains that I really don’t want to do it.

I read something that made me so very happy!  Apparently, a Scottish study found that just 10 minutes of leisurely cycling with two 20-second bursts of hard pedaling, done three times a week is equal to a quality workout!

Is it too good to be true?  You can bet I’ll try it and hope for fabulous results.  Feel free to join me!

Sometimes I get bored with the bike – so I go bowling.  I burn 237 calories per hour (if I stay away from the snack bar) – yikes!  :-/

Eating habits still count as well.  If you can find some blue plates (they are not easy to find here in Wichita) that would be great.  Why?  Psychologically, blue does not stimulate the senses – or make us think we need to eat more.

The happiest plate is not the one that is empty – it’s the one that is filled wisely.  Most of the plate should have green on it (i.e. broccoli), then a protein source (i.e. beef, chicken).  You can have a bit of complex carbohydrate, such as 1/4 baked potato with that, but if I can skip it, I do.  I’ve learned to enjoy veggies, fruits, beans and nuts.

I learned that skipping meals just makes you binge at some point.  It’s best to just eat all three meals and be smart about portions.

Have you ever kept a food journal?  I didn’t used to, but sometimes it helps because I catch triggers that make me want to fall off the diet wagon.  I can thwart the urge to sabotage my efforts and be successful.

If you have a choice between eating out and brown-bagging – pack your own lunch.  It’s a matter of control.  For example, I like the Arby’s Turkey & Swiss sandwich, but they use mayo on them, which adds about 100 calories that I can do without.  I can get similar ingredients and make my own – but hold the mayo.  I think the bread I use is probably fewer calories than the bread they use too (certainly lower in carbohydrates).

I’ve learned to swap ice cream for yogurt.  It’s going to sound weird, but I am hooked on Dannon Light & Fit 80 calorie yogurt.  All of the flavors are delicious – no lie.  Some of them are fruit, but others are dessert flavors like Boston Cream Pie and Toasted Coconut Vanilla.

Heart disease is the number one health risk for women – and a major complication of type 2 diabetes.  I have to make some small changes in my daily diet and exercise routine.  I’ve also learned that it’s okay to laugh more and stress less.

I’m thankful that with a few baby steps, this diet thing seems to be working well.  🙂

 

 

 

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (22)

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It’s difficult to erase years of conditioning – but now at age 54, I’m learning an important truth:  SELF-CARE IS NOT SELFISH.  It’s not a sin to take care of this one and only body that God gave me!  There is a difference between taking care of yourself and being completely wrapped up in your own needs while excluding others.

I think a lot of baby boomers struggle with this same issue.  We were raised in church and learned that everybody’s needs come before our own.  To a degree I guess that’s true, but I’ve finally learned that you cannot care for anyone until you care for yourself.

Winning at weight loss taught me that I have control over my looks and my life.  – Diane Gurden

I SUCCEED IN YOU

With 12 pounds gone comes less body fat and yes, more confidence, I am still not comfortable with the idea of control – I want to always be careful to give God the glory for any of my successes.  Left to my own devices, I might fail – but when I give Him the glory, I remember to lean fully on His love and power – and especially His wisdom, which hello – is better than mine!

An important lesson I’ve learned is that carbohydrates matter.  It’s not only about the grams of sugar in food – in fact, I’ve eaten more fruit lately than snack crackers.  Even though fruit has natural sugar, it is just that – natural.  It counts, of course – but carbohydrates do more damage than natural sugar.

These days I do not use the word CAN’T.  I never say I can’t eat (fill in the blank).  I either say I don’t want it (if I think the nutritional price is too high) or I may eat that later – (and then don’t.)  Sometimes I have to psych myself into thinking I’ll revisit a food – and make myself get involved in something else to take my mind off of it.  I celebrate small victories, like when I manage to pass on a high-carbohydrate snack.

I’ve learned the importance of hydration and the early to bed advantage!  Drinking enough water helps diabetes stay in check.  For years I did not recognize the signs of dehydration, but now I know if I feel dizzy or weak – I probably need some water.  The way to combat those late night cravings is to go to bed early – then it’s easier to get up earlier and get my workout finished first thing – what’s the second thing?  COFFEE…  of course!  🙂

 

NATIONAL COTTON CANDY DAY

JUNE 11TH IS NATIONAL COTTON CANDY DAY

Today we celebrate the fun food that nearly every child has eaten at one time or the other…  COTTON CANDY!  It’s so much fun because who would think of eating cotton?  But cotton candy almost immediately melts in your mouth and is so yummy and sweet.

6-11 FUN AND LOVE

As we get older and have to face the big issues in life, it’s good to take a moment to close your eyes and think about fun moments of childhood.  Today I will close my eyes and think about eating cotton candy at the circus.  Every spot that got wet turned into a sticky mess!

The best technique is to pull a bite-size piece, but even then you have to make sure you didn’t get your fingers wet – lol.  It’s just messy no matter how you eat it – but isn’t that part of the fun?

This sticky mess is known as cotton candy in the United States, India and Canada.  It’s called candy floss in the United Kingdom, Pakistan, Ireland, New Zealand and South Africa.  My favorite name for it is fairy floss.  If you’re in Australia, that’s what you call it.

Most cotton candy is sold from a bag these days, but when I was a kid, we got to watch them make it.  It’s a form of spun sugar with dashes of flavoring and food coloring added.  It’s made by heating sugar and spinning the liquefied sugar out through tiny holes where it re-solidifies in minutely thin strands of “sugar glass”. 

Don’t you wonder who sits up at night thinking these things up?

Though cotton candy packs pounds on the body, it contains mostly air and weighs about an ounce.  When I was a kid, cotton candy was sold on paper batons.  Today it’s sold in plastic bags and you don’t get to watch them make it.

There are similar confections like the Persian Pashmak and the Turkish Pismaniye, but Pismaniye is made with flour and water in addition to sugar. 

For the most part, it’s not the cotton candy that matters, but the memory that encompasses it.  In my life, it was fun at the circus or the state fair with my parents.  Good times – yeah, really good times.  🙂