Friday, April 26, 2013

The Low Carb Blues

So you've heard me mention a few times about having to eat "low carb" for a bit. I'm incredibly lucky in that my place of work has a wellness center, fully staffed with physicians, nutritionists, massage therapist, etc. I know- it's ridiculous! And it makes it so easy to get an annual physical, complete with a round of blood work. So that's exactly what I did a few weeks ago. The good news is that (other than having gained about 10 pounds), I'm really healthy! With one exception, of course. My blood sugar tested at an elevated level, so the dr. recommended another (more thorough) test. For the second time, it showed elevated levels. It's possible that it could be associated with my weight gain, though I'm still within normal parameters for my height. There could be other explanations, and I'm working on getting those checked out as well. But the bottom line is I can do immediate things to help get it back to normal, and that means reducing my carb intake and losing weight. Shoot me now.

If you know me at all, you know that bread and cheese are just about my two favorite foods. While I don't eat a lot of white bread/pasta/rice, I do probably consume more carbs than I should. So I decided to meet with the nutritionist on staff to get some guidance. She had great things to say about some of the things that I was eating, but said that if I could lower my daily carb intake to 40-45% of my diet, and consistently exercise 5 days a week, then my weight would be back to "normal" in no time at all.

I've been working really hard these past 2 weeks to meal plan, exercise, and stay consistent with a well rounded diet- and it's starting to pay off. I've already lost 3 pounds!! For someone who tries to eat vegan about 80% of the time, I've had to add in low fat dairy to replace some of the more "carby" things that I was eating. I've also been more conscious about fruits and starchy vegetables, and have tried to add as much green leafy things as I can stomach. It's not easy, but the key to being successful is to plan, plan, plan!

Below are just a few of the meals that I have in rotation, so I'm not having to reinvent the wheel on a regular basis.


0% fat greek yogurt with berries and ground flax seeds

Egg whites and spinach on Ezekiel toast, with a little hot sauce on top

Green smoothie

Veggies, tofu and hummus, oh my!

Chopped spinach salad with a cauliflower pizza bite

Egg whites with spinach, tomatoes, kale and a babybel
(trying to clean out the fridge at the end of the week)

Tofu and kale tacos with avocado

Okra and spaghetti squash with avocado cream

Black bean and kale tacos. Maybe not the most "low carb",
but they still kept me within 40-45% for the day

I know several people who are either getting ready for a wedding, or just trying to reshape their overall health. What are your tips/tricks for staying on track?

1 comment:

  1. Great job sticking to your lower carb diet! That's a hard thing to do. I agree that bread+cheese are two of the best things in the world. When I go to the whole foods cheese section, I die.

    Recently I've been trying to cut gluten out of my life. I'm doing it for the month of April to see if it helps with my skin care problem. I have to say, it's much easier to avoid the "naughty" carbs when they're completely off limits! I still get my fair share of carbs from tons of fruits and veggies, rice, quinoa, and gluten free baked goods (occasionally). The whole process is so much easier than I thought it would be!