Jane’s diet…

Quite frequently someone I know or don’t know inquires about my diet.

First of all, I use the word “diet” cautiously. I do not mean the rather negative connotation of the world equaling “starve yourself, trying to lose weight just this week, etc.” I mean, diet as in how I have been eating for the past 5 years and how into the indefinite future plan on eating.

It’s really quite simple. If you are interested in trying this, keep in mind, {disclaimer} I am not a doctor or licensed nutritionist whatsoever! I have done a lot of research on my own, and this works really great for me. I also believe genetics plays a huge role in our body types. We can however control our bodies to a certain degree to remain physically fit & healthy.

First thing, I recommend being very educated on what you are doing before you begin.

I joined the low-carb bandwagon back when it was sweeping the nation, I originally read:

and I still tend to follow pretty close to what Dr. Atkins recommends. However, there are many other similar low-carb diet books out there that would be comparable and full of good advice too.

Very simply put, when you eat carbohydrates (from ‘hydrates of carbon’) or saccharides (Greek meaning “sugar”), they are quickly turned into fat in your body (increases insulin production which helps the body store fat). Carbohydrates are not essential nutrients: the body can obtain all its energy from protein and fats. When you eat Protein, your body can digest the food very easy and nearly 100% of the food is put to use in your body building muscle, energy, etc. Also, a small percentage of “fats and oils” are not bad for you and your body does not turn fat into fat unless it’s given more than it needs.

I am really trying to keep this short, hoping if you’re interested you will find more information on your own. I want to get more food info. out there than the technical side of the body.

simple and complex Carbohydrates:

Pasta

Bread [rolls, bagels, crust, etc.]

white rice

potatoes

potato chips

sugar… {sucrose}

cake

pie

chocolate

candy

soda

dairy products {lactose}

fruit {fructose}

Proteins: these foods may have a “trace” of carbs in them, but it’s little.

Beef

Tilapia

Salmon

Dover Sole

Tuna

Bacon

Sausage

Chicken

Fish

Pork

eggs

cheese

broccoli

asparagus

artichokes

edamame beans

sugar snap peas

cabbage

cauliflower

green beans

green peas

lettuce

brussel sprouts

low-carb yogurt

protein shakes

protein bars

a variety of nuts & seeds

cream soups

These foods don’t really qualify for either category but are low-carb {healthy} and/or other options…

whole grains (although packed with carbs- be careful- are necessary for good digestion)-

Spelt bread

wheat thins

brown rice (there is a big difference in the nutritional value of white and brown rice and breads… study it… you’ll never eat white again)

whole grain pasta

diet soda

crystal light

coffee

tea

The general idea of “Atkins,” is that in Phase 1 {14 days} you eat under 20 sugar carbs per day. There are more restrictions in Phase 1 because you a more or less re-setting your metabolism. For example, you do not consume caffeine or have fruit/nuts during this time. It is really really important, I cannot stress this enough that you eat ALOT/meet your calories every day. Each week after that Phase 1, you increase your carbs by 5 per week till you hit a week that you stop losing weight. At that point, you go back 5 carbs and that is the determined healthy amount of carbs for your body to function and lose weight.

Because I have eaten low-carb for so long I have memorized the carb count on most foods. Here is a basic nutrition label –

If you are looking at the Total Carbohydrates, the only ones you are concerned about are the “Sugars.” There are 0 in this particular food item. So, regarding to the serving size, you would stay under 20 carbs per day in Phase 1 of Atkins.

A couple outside-of-atkins eating tips is to keep in mind portion size. I usually eat 6 meals a day, and most of those meals could fit on the size of my hand, a couple inches high. Also, I begin eating around 7am with a protein shake and I try not to eat after 6-7pm at night.

Here is an example of my average 6 meals a day:

7am – EAS Protein shake

9:30am – 2 pieces of Spelt toast buttered, low-carb/no-caffeine mocha

12pm – Grilled chicken salad w/ Ranch dressing

2pm – Sugar Snap Peas or Edamame and a diet green tea

4pm – 2 hard-boiled eggs and/or protein bar, diet soda

6:30 – Grilled Salmon & vegetables

*I also drink A LOT of water throughout the day, and will drink diet soda and/or green/black tea between all 6 meals. Keep in mind however, carbonation slows metabolism. Caffeine however burns fat by increasing your body temperature and giving you energy for a better work out. Also, if you drink green and/or black tea before or after a meal, your body will consume 20% less of the carbs from that food (both have caffeine naturally if not removed).

If you are hoping to lose a lot of weight, just eating better will do much of the work. However, if you want to lose a lot of weight quickly and be in great shape…Of course, I recommend exercise. I know a lot of people dislike exercising, so it might be a challenge. I, for one, love working out. I can get really grumpy if I don’t get my daily work out. But, since it’s almost spring there are lots of ways to fit in exercise without necessarily lifting weights or jumping on a treadmill. Ride bikes with your kids, go hiking, learn how to play tennis, etc. Exercise really speeds up the weight loss process and is so mentally healthy for you. I always have said, exercise keeps my head clear of cob webs.

If you have a sweet tooth like I do, once you have re-set your bodies metabolism, you can bring in a lot of low-carb desserts/treats that are really yummy. There is a big variety of things for diabetics that are really good and you can substitute sugar with Splenda in most recipes to lower the carbs
.

I mentioned “EAS”Protein shakes. They are my favorite low-carb protein shake. I usually buy 4-10 cases at a time when I stock up on these. My favorite is Strawberry. Wal-Mart carries them for about $4.97 a case, and Albertsons charges $7.99 a case which is a BIG difference if you’re buying so many cases at once. My entire family drinks these, so we can go through a lot of them.

My favorite protein bars are the Met-RX protein plus, they come in a few different kinds, and they come in 2 sizes. I prefer the smaller ones because a large protein bar is actually too much for me to eat in one meal. These you can find in most places, and the prices doesn’t fluctuate as much as the protein shakes. However, your best place to get a great price on protein bars is to scout them out online.

My favorite low-carb bread is “Spelt Bread” by Prairie Grains. It can be found at Wal-Mart, Albertsons, Ream’s, and most natural food stores. It has a clear bag and a blue label. I think if you try it, you won’t go back to any other bread because it’s so good. Eating low-carb or not. If I need less carbs in my day I use Romaine lettuce for lettuce wraps to make sandwiches. and, I always eat my cheese burgers without the buns. I recommend buying your Edamame beans at Costco, they sell them in the freezer section in a case of 12 individual packages. This makes it easy to microwave and take them with you on the go.

It definitely cost more to eat healthy, too. Because what are the least expensive foods in a store? Pasta, Mac & Cheese, Top Ramen, Potatoes… And, the more expensive items are meat, cheese, etc. So, you have to consider your food budget when wanting to stock up on protein items.

Please note, it is a dangerous oversimplification to think Carbohydrates are bad for you. Daily, I get a healthy dose of them, but it is definitely within moderation of what my body can use/requires. Think: “Good carbs, not no carbs.” Make your calories count. Also, remember the 20 carbs per day is only to reset your metabolism- 2 weeks… I know, I know… you need grains and fruit… and will eat it again… just not in the first part of this diet.

It is very hard to stop eating sugar. Sugar is a drug to the body just like any other drug you could become addicted to. Having said this, don’t cheat yourself. The first 3 days will be really hard, but once you make it a couple weeks you will realize you miss sugar less and less. If you decide to cheat by having a little splurge or one cookie, your body will crave that sugar just like you had never stopped eating it. Be loyal to the eating plan! Don’t give up! The key to not cheating is being prepared. Everyone who knows me, knows I always have snacks/drinks with me in case I need them. You can buy small bags of sugar snap peas at Wal-Mart, protein bars are small, a small zip lock bag of wheat thins, etc. can easily be slipped into your handbag to have in case you get stuck starving somewhere.

If you don’t go looking for more information in a book. Here are some great links to check out. Carbohydrates, Atkins, Blaine’s low-carb Kitchen {TV show}.

If anyone has questions, feel free to email me…

Best of luck to whom-ever may try to change bad eating habits to good ones!

(((HUGS)))

15 responses to “Jane’s diet…

  1. Wow Jane!! I am so grateful that you took the time to post this, this is seriously awesome!!!! You did a great job explaining everything-thank you!

  2. This is a lot of great info. I had no idea that caffeine can hurt weight loss, although I have noticed that I have more energy at night when I have substituted green tea for my usual coffee. It’s a new habit I am trying to embrace! Thanks for sharing your methods – I really admire your commitment & dedication to your health!

  3. Ha ha.. I just popped over here again to read and absorb more and I thought I must have mis-read it the first time. Either way I need to back off on the diet coke!

  4. This is awesome!!! I love how detailed you are. Let see if I can maybe lose my last 10 pounds with this! 🙂

  5. Can’t wait to finish cooking this baby and then put all this great advice to good use! That and indoor soccer may be my ticket to a skinny-new-post-baby self! 🙂

  6. I love your diet – it’s the only one I can do! Once your body gets over the initial shock of no sugar, it’s actually pretty easy to maintain (except of course when you get easter cookies! oh well). Thanks for all your help and encouragement on my diet. You should write your own book!

  7. Jane-
    I found your blog through Shannon Taylors and I located her through my good friend Lacey (Shannon’s babysitter). You are one smart and talented gal! Thank you for taking the time to post all of your nutritional wisdom and especially in terms one could understand. Would you mind if I e-mailed you with some questions? You have inspired me, motivated me, and given me the encouragement I need to get started!!!!! Please e-mail me at studio34@gmail.com if you wouldn’t mind me picking your brain.
    Thanks
    Allison

  8. I have been so discouraged about my baby weight with this baby not going away. With Bella, a week after I had her I was already down to my starting wieght and then a week later lost 5 more pounds… and that was just sitting on my butt nursing all day. With Bodie, it’s a whole different story. Thank you for taking the time to write this all out. I seriously just threw away my breakfast and am starting right now to xnay on the carbs. Wish my luck, I LOVE pasta!!! That’s my weekness. I’m going to do it though. I just needed a jump start and going to your blog this morning was my green flag to GO! and JUST DO IT!!!! Thanks Jane

  9. Thanks for taking the time to write all of this it is very good info. I have been trying the low carb thing for a couple weeks (almost without sugar) that is the hardest part for me. I still need to make a few adjustments. Thanks your great!

  10. You have explained pieces of your eatting to me before but I love knowing more about it. The problem here in England is FINDING the right foods and then getting portions that will feed my family a whole meal! All of the portions they sell in stores here are so small because no one has families the size of ours. I have to go to the store two or three times a week to keep up and to have a place to store it in our little tiny fridge and freezer:)
    Anyway I think it is so great that you have researched so much and way to go taking care of your body.

  11. I know this is something you are very passionate about! Thanks for typing all of that! I need to get serious here. I’ve lost 40 lbs since I had Lilly but I need to still lose about 15 and I know I need to cut out the sugar from all areas. Thanks for the inspiration!

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