Lunchbox: Thursday, 29 May 2014

The lunchbox is carb loaded but at least sugar free: mince with stroganoff sauce made with cream, penne pasta and green veggies steamed with herbed butter. It was straight forward, took only 5 minutes to prepare and was devine. Going carb free soon so am trying to enjoy all the goodies I will not be allowed when I go cold turkey. I know I shouldn't but with Gran's funeral looming I really don't care what my diet contains...


Lunchbox: Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Hubby is having one of his favourites: a chicken salad. Boring I know but at least this one is jazzed up with some perfectly ripe avocado's, feta and some tasty black olives. I can't stand a salad without dressing, it's like a cake without frosting (hmmmm.....cake, sorry where was I?). I add something even if it's just balsamic vinegar, he adds nothing.

Hubby was just saying I shouldn't say too much on the subject of salads, as salad is my Kryptonite. I would probably die if I was exposed too often to a diet of salads... He's not wrong you know.


I Quit Sugar | Week 2

I just realised something: I already have the answer to going "cold-turkey" on sugar: The Cohen Diet! It reduces refined carbohydrates (which is basically sugar), limits fruit to 2 pieces a day and excludes the real sugary fruit such as grapes etc and obviously cuts out the white stuff. Now Sarah advocates cutting out all fruit for at least a while to really go "cold turkey", but that might be a bit too drastic. However if you are addicted to sugar like I am, then it really is necessary. She also advocates leaving any artificial sweeteners too as you need to get used to things being less sweet and sweeteners defeats the purpose. So we are back to the diet then....


Lunchbox: Thursday | 15 May 2014

The I Quit Sugar Week 1 Diet was going well...until Friday. I had to fly to Johannesburg to attend my Grandmother who is currently in hospital and as always when I'm stressed, the diet went out the window. Even such a simple diet to reduce sugar. Why? Well because we were living on take-aways and I ended up doing everything that was on my list: orange juice and toast with jam in the morning, sugar in my coffee (of which I had many, many cups), coke at lunch and dessert in the evenings. So, I broke every single rule.... But as they say: don't give up, just carry on.

But I did have good intentions before the weekend. I had this fantastic sandwich on rye bread, with Cajun spiced chicken breast, salad and feta. No sauces, no soft drinks or juice and no jams or sauces in sight. 


How is my first week on a sugar detox?

How is my first week on sugar detox I hear you ask? Well, since I have only had to make a couple of changes it has actually been going well. That's not saying much as lunches so far has bought rather than made (bad mother, bad wife, bad me?). The only real issue has been the sugar in my coffee. I realized that I add sugar without thinking, then gulping it all down in one go with halve the sugar not dissolved.

(Let's not even mention my perpetual craving for Rainbow Cupcakes!)

But what I now do miss is honey. Which is strange as I have only started eating honey after my pregnancy (one of those weird cravings as I hated it before) and now I want French toast with a big lump of pure, light butter (Lurpak people!) and some plain clear light honey.

But obviously I will want it... An option to replace honey is rice malt syrup. Only one question: what the hell is that?! It doesn't sound appetizing. Plus doesn't it defeat the purpose? To retrain yourself not to want the sweet stuff? So anyone with a suggestion, I am more than willing to try it.


Week 1: I Quit Sugar

WEEK 1: I Quit Sugar

Sarah suggest to gradually ease into a no sugar detox so as to fool yourself into enjoying it as an experiment instead of seeing it as another deprivation diet. So week one she suggest I pare back on sugar.

So here are my 5 Rules for this week's experiment:

1. No more soft drinks.
2. No more fruit juice.
3. No desserts.
4. No jam on my bread.
5. No sugar in my coffee or tea.

The hardest part will probably be Rule 3 but it is only one week...


Mother's Day

Wow, was I treated for Mother's Day! I received a beautiful bound box from Daniela's filled with 24 beautifully crafted and fresh macaroons, my absolute favourite dessert ever!

Well, that was what it was supposed to be when I finally got hold of my phone to take a picture but at that stage.... It wasn't my fault it was delivered the Friday already! And everyone knows you have to eat them quickly or they go stale. Well that is my excuse anyway. This was what was left by Sunday:

But enough of that. Let's get to the most important part: my favourite flavours. First the list of flavours that they have are extensive but they don't always make all of them. You can however request specific ones. And most importantly, they deliver!

I loved the salted caramel and the chocolate macaroon was so delicious.


BOOK REVIEW: I quit sugar

I have been obsessing about low carb diets for a while. At first a though it was just another fad. But then I tried the Cohen Diet to varying degrees of success. Before my wedding I lost about 10kg on the restricted diet, so I know it works but after little Em's birth I just couldn't commit. And that is what it requires: real commitment as it really is restrictive! Not just what you are allowed to eat but how much. 

The problem however is not while you are on it but rather what happens afterwards. I am a real sucker for breads, cakes, pastries and everything carb related. That was why I was so obsessed with the low carb diets, as I assumed that was my weakness. But then I sat down and read Sarah Wilson's I QUIT SUGAR. For the first time in ages I sat down and read a book from cover to cover, not just paging through it directly to the recipes. And what an eye opener!

It is not the carbs that have been making my dietary life miserable but the sugar!  And you know what, it makes so much sense. Now I know why low carb diets make you feel better: I was also cutting out sugar to a certain extent. So when I was following a low carb diet by only cutting out grains, I still had my highs and lows. I still had slumps, I still had cravings. I was addicted to the sugar! Just look how I eat my crabs: jams, icing, chocolate spread - sugar sugar sugar! 

Luckily I don't have to go cold turkey. Sarah suggest an 8 week "detox" program, that gradually decreases your sugar intake and to "recalibrate" your dependence on sugar, especially hidden sugar. Now this also entails cutting down on carbs as they also have the same affect as sugar. I like the idea of: this is not a diet but an experiment. You are encouraged to cut out sugar and take special note of how this affects your body. I'm so tired of diets and fads but I'm also so tired of being tired. Who is with me?


30 Second Croissant

I love croissants. I should have been French except I suspect they have a deep appreciation for croissants and baguettes and not the unhealthy obsession like I do. Therefore I rarely buy them but when I do I buy a bag of 8 individually wrapped fresh croissants and eat nothing but croissants for a whole week. Which is what happened this week. I was too embarrassed and therefore the lack of posts.

But since I now have what put little Em in the hospital last weekend, I kind of don't care what I eat, as long as it is comforting and quick (my motto when it comes to food). And this little sandwich really is quick!

2 croissants
Sliced cheese (I used Gouda) as much as you feel like
2 tsp tomato jam

Fresh fruit (I had fresh strawberries and sweet grapes)

Top the croissants with the cheese and spread 1 tsp jam on each croissant. Nuke in a microwave for 20 seconds until the cheese almost melts. And enjoy!


Lunchbox: Emmental and Ham Croissant

Emmental cheese is a real mystery to me. It looks so gentle and delicate with its Swiss like hole but has a bite to it. I used it with wafer thin smoked ham and a smidgen of Dijon Mustard. Just what I needed. And I still have some croissants left over so I can finally satisfy my craving of creamy scrambled eggs on a fresh croissant....hmmmm

As we were finally discharged from the hospital with little Em we were able to enjoy our lunch off proper plates for a changes. It was absolute extacy after 2 weeks of take-aways and greasy food.


Comfort eating.

Dear silent critics, my healthy eating intentions has seen its proverbial ass! With little Em having not 1, but 2 viruses, the worst one leading to a chest infection and almost another visit to the hospital and now we have to worry about chicken pox! This after she just received grommets from a nasty ear infection... I am a self confessed emotional eater. I always have been and have accepted my pathetic excuse for willpower but now it has reared it's mean little head once again.

My diet is non existing. In fact I'm using every inch of my willpower not to run to the nearest bakery, buy a whole cake and in it in secret. In the car. With my hands. So what am I to do? Hubby doesn't understand. He has immense willpower. I can buy his Christmas present, leave it unwrapped in a plastic bag, on the table and he won't even peak. I on the other hand would not only have peaked but tried it on!

We are leaving for Phuket in 11 months. I was so hoping to be able to wear a bikini but a burka would have to do. Any advice? Someone out there must feel as I do and must know the answers!