** Amber's Belly Fat Cure Shopping List - Download or Print HERE **

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

I Think I'll Name Him Steve

Looky what I found at my Farmer's Market this last weekend? A real, in the flesh, Stevia Plant! It was the only one and they wanted $8 for it. Of course I snapped it right up. I was so excited by this purchase I had the Husband take a photo... as if I'd run into George Clooney or something.

I saw these two videos (#1 and #2) on YouTube recently, and while I don't know these women or if what they are saying is true, it made a little sense. Not just about why is Stevia white in our little packets, but why so many of our foods are bleached and processed chemically. That has been in the back of my mind for a bit, so that is why I shelled out the big bucks for my little plant. But no matter how you get it, remember there is no Splenda or Aspartame plant!

Now I just have to figure out how to use it! Any of you growing your own Stevia? I would love (no make the LOVE) to hear about it. I googled it a bit and it seems it needs to mature some for the leaves to be sweeter. I am going to transplant it into a big pot, but I'm renting right now and don't want to put it in the ground.

It sounds like I have two options for use: 1. let the leaves air dry for 24 hours and then grind them up into a powder or 2. just boil the leaves with my tea water. #2 Will only work when sweetening something that needs heated I guess, but that works for me anyways.

My heirloom tomatoes, mint, basil and cilantro are coming along great. I don't usually eat tomatoes on this diet, but I'll eat these! Really looking forward to Tomato/Basil/Mozzarella stacks soon. The jalapeƱos are coming much slower this year though. There is a plum tree in our backyard spilling over right now too. I think I'll round them up and give to friends what the kids and Husband don't eat.

Ever since I started reading Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle book we head out to the local Farmer's Market every Sunday morning. I am trying to eat more consciously and did I mention the Husband has decided to eat a Vegan Diet? Oy vay already. The kids hate the Farmers Market... I mean really hate it. First I would promise pastries or ice cream afterwards, but it just seemed to make it worse. There is a "Balloon Guy" there who wants $3 to make a balloon snake and my 5 year old turns all James Gadolfini on me when I say No every time we go. We have the regular stalls we hit up for all the green organic veggies and eggplant, cool mushroom varieties, French sausage and this week I even bought my eggs there.

To find a Farmers Market in your area, check Local Harvest. I am so lucky that there are multiple markets here open year round. What are you all growing and buying and loving this summer?


Monday, June 28, 2010

Woman's World Photo Shoot

Tomorrow morning I am doing something really fun and completely out of my comfort zone. I am doing a photo shoot for Woman's World magazine! The photographer will come to my house and we are going to shoot for about 90 minutes. Inside shots, me making a low sugar meal, and outside shots. It is part of an article I was interviewed for on Jorge Cruise's Belly Fat Cure diet. Jorge's staff submitted several client profiles to the magazine and they picked me!

While I'm pretty excited, I am also completely nervous. The last professional photograph I had taken of my myself? Senior pictures in 1987. Yep, I am old and pathetic! I am going to have my hair "blown out', which is apparently something people do. But I am doing my own makeup, good thing they want a natural look! I am completely inept at makeup application.

The most nerve wracking part? The clothing. No white, no black, no stripes, no prints, no jeans and it needs to be form fitting and bright colors. That is a pretty tall order for a person who has just started rebuilding a wardrobe! But if they aren't too strict on the guidelines, I think I'll have a few things to choose from. I spent most of Saturday at two different malls and will probably end up returning most of it.

No sure what food I'm going to make for the shoot... suggestions? A shake topped with Uncle Sam's cereal, turkey sandwich, chopped salad, popsicles? Maybe chicken tacos? Of course I am out of GG Crispbreads at the moment, or I'd do something with them.

I hope I can relax and enjoy the experience a little. My 5 year old has declared I will be famous after this and can visit the White House anytime I want. When I asked him what famous meant he said "Like  Dr. Steve O'Shea". And honey, who is that? "The squid expert, Dr. Steve O'Shea Mom! HE is very famous". Hmm, okay, like Steve O'Shea then.

My weight is holding really steady and I just realized with summer and not walking the kids to school I am only get in about 1/3 of the walking/running I did before. I am going to find time to do my big hike/run tonight though, because I think it helps my face look thinner for a day. I think all the pounding drains the liquid from it! I am also going to resist the urge to fast for the next 24 hours so I'll look as slim as possible, and just eat normally.

The article will be in a late August issue, which I will definitely link to it and talk more about! Wish me luck! I am off to clean my kitchen so I don't come off as a complete slob...

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Dieting on Vacation - Napa, CA

We recently had company in town and took a trip up to Napa Valley. I live in the San Fransisco Bay Area, yet had never taken the drive up. Guests, plus a mini vacay, can really ruin a diet! I've been on the Belly Fat Cure long enough that it seems like the choices come easily, but you do have to be extra vigilant.

The main thing I try to do is concentrate on what I CAN HAVE instead of things I CAN'T HAVE. Otherwise, I'd go nuts. My favorite thing is when someone says "Well you can't have that on your diet!" because 70% of the time I actually can. The photo is from our picnic lunch at the V. Sattui winery. Lots of cheese, sausage, red wine and a little Scharffen Berger dark chocolate. There was a baguette that everyone else shared, and I had a bite of it.  It was good and really fresh, but I was happy I could take a bite and move on. I absolutely love that we can have a glass of wine with this diet! Most diets, you can't.

People seem to indulge in dessert much more on vacation. So even if you survive the meal and cocktails, you still have to make it through dessert! Life is so cruel. Yes, the cones smell really good at Ben & Jerry's. But it was enough to watch my boys thoroughly enough theirs. I did not partake.  At Starbucks I had an iced Venti Green Tea with a packet of Sun Crystals (which I carry in my purse) while the kids had a giant cookie. My Mom said once "You are really being good", but skinny really does feel better than that cookie could possibly taste. And by skinny, I mean not fat. Because I am not skinny, I'm just normal.

I usually pack a box of Uncle Sam's cereal when I'm out of town and have it for breakfast. But this time I ate out with the group. Breakfast is a great meal to eat out on a low sugar/low carb diet. Omelets, scrambles, eggs benedict are all good choices. I go for the Huevos Ranchero though. And coffee, lots of coffee. Dinners I had a big Cobb Salad or Grilled Fish (and replace starchy carbs with green veggies or a salad). I usually pack an 85% Dark Chocolate bar too and break off a few pieces in the evening.


Instead of doing a food tour of Napa, we really enjoyed each other's company. It was so nice to spend time with my Mom who lives far away and it had been a year since the last visit. She has lost abuot 40 lbs herself! We did some clothing shopping together and she took home tons of stuff from my closet that doesn't fit me anymore. I bought a pair on white slacks and splurged on this top from Anthropologie. I am in love with that store! If I won the lottery I would just buy all my clothes there exclusively. Shopping is a little dangerous after losing nearly 50 lbs, it turns out.

How do you handle eating on a vacation when you are on a diet? Stay 100% true, limited splurges or just throw the diet out the window? I'd love to know...

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Product Review: Michelob Ultra Beer

For the Low Sugar and Belly Fat Cure dieters over the age of 21, Michelob Ultra is one of the best beers allowed on the plan. Wine seems like it is the alcoholic drink of choice on this plans, maybe because that is what many women prefer. But when you want a beer, this is a good choice.

Incredibly it has 0grams Sugar/3grams Carbohydrates for an S/C Value of 0/0. Jorge Cruise even mentions this beer in his book on page 293. It is a very light beer, but still satisfies. It doesn't have a lot of body or flavor to it.Michelob Ultra is widely available where alcohol is sold  and is inexpensive at less then a $1 a bottle. It is also commonly available at restaurants.
I was a regular beer drinker, preferably Mexican or a dark beer, before starting the BFC. I have only had a beer a few times on the BFC, but with summer here I can it coming up more often. We were invited to a BBQ last week and I showed up with a Salad side dish and a six pack of this! My husband had one too, even though I offered him a regular beer, and he seemed fine with it.

There are several other light beers that are low on sugar and carbs. Anyone else drinking beer this summer and have a favorite to recommend?

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Week 34: Size Matters

All is well in the Land of Maintaining on the Belly Fat Cure. To be honest, maintenance is pretty much the same as regular BFC... okay it is exactly the same! The book doesn't really have much to say about a maintenance phase versus losing, so I'll ask Jorge Cruise about that next time I talk to him... (you know, if I talk to him again!)

It took a while to wean myself from weighing nearly everyday. My Mom was visiting me and she has also lost weight. She has a little bit of Dieter's ADD and has done BFC, plus a few other diet plans. But she informed me that I needed to weigh everyday. "Why" I asked "I'm at my goal weight and I don't want to obsess on a number". She agreed, but was afraid of starting to gain weight back and not realize it until it was too late.

That number on the scale says I've gained a 1/2 pound in the last month and puts me at 148. I'm good with that. Actually, no I am thrilled with that! I want to go off the feel of my clothing and how things are fitting. Granted sometimes I feel bloated and I am drinking much more water now then I was a month ago (thanks to the Kidney Stones). But bloat is different then fat.

The most interesting thing I have found about losing weight is my mental body image. I still see myself as squeezed into my size 14s. My size 8 jeans I bought a few months ago are pretty loose on me now, but looking down, they could definitely just be on old size 14s. It just doesn't register.  I went to Target to kill 30 minutes while my boys took a Break Dancing class (that's right, Break Dancing) this week and I bought three things. All size Small.  But I just can't wrap my head around that!

I kept thinking back to shopping at the The Limited a few years ago with a friend. In the dressing room I asked if I could get a sweater in XL when the Large was too tight. The salesgirl said "Sorry Ma'am, we don't carry that size".  Really? I felt a little like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman when they just didn't want her type in their store. (Fat women in my case, not hookers which I totally understand)



One thing I have figured out is that I have hips and, as I've mentioned before, I have boobs. They are still there. They are smaller, for sure, but I have them. And I am slowly coming to appreciate them. They are what makes me a women, not an androgynous kid.

I'm curious, how often do you weigh? Do you weigh yourself regularly, even after you get to your goal? I want to go by the feel of my clothing, but I wonder how others do this. Because I certainly don't want to gain it back.

And did you notice the redesigned blog?! And I'm not actually sure it is Week 34 on the diet it could be 32 or 36 even. I need to start counting on months now, right?

4X369TNMT2YY

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Product Review: Benefiber

Benefiber-Natural Fiber Supplement, 25.6oz 190 ServingsThe first time I was introduced to Benefiber was years ago. My Mother used it in her morning coffee, and while visiting me we had to go pick some up, because she just couldn't be without it. I didn't really understand her obsession with it and when I tried it in my coffee like she suggested, I felt like it left a residue and didn't really like a slight aftertaste. Well, I was young and stupid, because now I swear by Benefiber too! Some day I'll learn not to question my Mother...

Benefiber is a fiber supplement that contains 0grams Sugar/4grams Carbs/3grams soluble Fiber, so on the Belly Fat Cure you can count it as an S/C Value of 0/0 if you have it by itself. There are some varities of Benefiber that have slightly different Suppliment Facts, so be sure and check the back of your bottle. For example, Benefiber with Calicium is 6grams Carbs and has different serving sizes and some of the chewables have sugar.

Benefiber is made from Wheat Dextrin and is meant to be taken in a liquid. I add it to my morning coffee every day. I feel like it doesn't add any taste or texture, unlike that first time I tried it. Jorge Cruise give it his Belly Fat Cure Seal of Approval in the book too. While you can use it up to three times a day, I typically just use it in the morning coffee. Maybe occasionally with a cup of tea at night if I feel like I had a low fiber day. Ideally I'd like to get all my fiber from my food with no need to supplement, but it is all a process.

I sometimes buy the generic store brand (Target has a good deal on their store brand) but recently broke down and bought the extra large bottle at Costco. Costco has a $4 off coupon this week for Benefiber. Amazon also has Benefiber for a good price too.

Jorge also recommends pysllium husks, but frankly I can't stand them. I had one glass full of the stuff and threw out the whole container. Benefiber, for me, is much more palatable. Here talks about the benefits of fiber and fiber supplements. I found his videos on bowel movements to be really helpful (and shocking!).

Monday, June 14, 2010

Best Cereal on a Low Carb Diet

I need a quick and simple breakfast that doesn't require any cooking on weekday mornings. These cereal's are my #1 choices on Jorge Cruise's Belly Fat Cure. Low Carb and low sugar Cereal also makes a great snack pack for the kids during or after school!

The trick is what you have with your cereal. On the BFC you cannot have Milk, whole or skim, as it has around 14grams of sugar in each cup. So how CAN you eat your cereal and stay low sugar? Really there are only three options: Eat it dry, with Unsweetened Almond Milk or with Unsweetened Coconut Milk. I prefer to have it dry, just because in the beginning I didn't really like the other alternatives.

Post Shredded Wheat Original Spoon Size Cereal, 16.4 oz (Pack of 6)Shredded Wheat - There are several brands (Post, generic store brands, Trader Joe's, etc) that all have about the same S/C Value. Just be sure you don't get the frosted or fruity kind! I have this for breakfast quite a bit. I get the Mini Shredded Wheat and stock up when they are on sale or I can find the double packs. My kids and Husband will eat this too. It is the lowest Sugar/Carb cereal that is widely available and a handful makes for a great snack on the run.
Sugar: 1  Carbs:  40  Fiber: 6   S/C Value: 1/2 for 1 Cup 
Uncle Sam Toasted Whole Wheat Flakes & Flaxseexd Original Cereal, 10-Ounce Boxes (Pack of 6)
Uncle Sams
- This is a great crunchy cereal loaded with flax seeds! My local grocery chain and Whole Foods carries them, as does Trader Joe's at a much lower price ($2.50). The best part of this cereal is the outstanding Fiber count. It has 9 grams of Fiber per serving and feels filling. It is also good as a granola substitute, over an Amazing Grass or Jay Robb shake. This is a staple for me on the Belly Fat cure and I pack for vacations to make sure I get my fiber and a good start to the day.
Sugar: 0  Carbs:  38  Fiber: 10    S/C Value: 0/2 for 3/4 Cup

Erewhon Crispy Brown Rice Cereal, Gluten Free, Organic, 10-Ounce Boxes (Pack of 6)Erewhon Crispy Brown Rice - I haven't tired this one, although I have seen in it stores. It's Fiber count isnt so impressive and I like the other cereal options so much for now. It is listed in the Belly Fat Cure book though, so I thought it was worth pointing out. It looks a little like Rice Krispies. 
Sugar:  0  Carbs: 25    Fiber: 0   S/C Value: 0/2 for 1 Cup


Enjoy Life Foods Gluten Free Perky's Crunchy FlaxPerky's Crunchy Flax - This cereal isn't mentioned in Jorge's book and I found it in a local specialty store, but I really like it and it fits into the BFC plan perfectly. It is different than all the other cereal, and is tiny puffed balls. The brand, Enjoy Life, is dedicated to being Nut and Gluten Free. This cereal is great and I could see using it in other recipes as well. The Carb count is a little high, so I just add slightly less than a whole serving to make it fit into BFC. The one box I bought disappeared really quickly, once my Husband found it! Sugar: 2  Carbs: 40   Fiber: 6    S/C Value: 2/2 for 3/4 Cup

Cheerios Cereal, 14-Ounce Box (Pack of 4)Cheerio's - Good old fashioned Cheerio's is everywhere, so it's easy to find. Just make sure it is the plan varity, not Multigrain, Honey or another type. Only the plain ones are good. I personally never have this on the BFC, but I serve it to the kids as a low sugar breakfast option.  
Sugar: 1  Carbs: 20   Fiber: 3   S/C Value: 1/1 for 1 Cup






Corn Flakes Cereal Individuals, 0.81-Ounce Boxes (Pack of 70)
Corn Flakes - This is my kid's favorite low sugar cereal, but I don't have it myself. While it has a really good S/C Value, the fiber is very low and we can do better. Again, it has to be the plain varity, no frosted flakes here! 
Sugar: 2  Carbs: 24   Fiber: 1   S/C Value: 2/1 for 1 Cup

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Low Sugar Popsicles

Its hot outside and we need a good low sugar treat. Mr. Jorge Cruise doesn't give us too many dessert options on the Belly Fat Cure, does he? I wish I lived where you could buy Blue Bunny Sweet Freedom Lites, but I don't. So I have decided to make my own popsicles, old school style!

Jay Robb Pops:
Make your Jay Robb Shake in the blender as normal, skipping the ice. Ideas: Vanilla with Blackberries, Blueberries or Raspberries (the are lowest sugar fruits) or anything else you can make from a Jay Robb shake.

Yogurt Pops:

Use low sugar Greek yogurt, like Fage, and a small amount of fruit (again Blackberries, Blueberries or Raspberries are the best BFC choices especially yogurt has sugar of its own). Place in a blender until smooth and pout into molds. Adding a whole berry to each pop would make it look pretty too. Remember the Greek Yogurt is really tart, and not sweet at all. If you want it sweeter you will need to add some Stevia to the blender.


Sobe or Zevia Pops:
Simply fill up the mold with the Sobe or Zevia. You can layer it by filling partially with one flavor/color, let it freeze to a slush, add another flavor/color and freeze again. You can drop in a few berries or squeeze in a bit of lemon or lime to give it a kick. This works with any of Low Sugar sodas out there, consider Blue Sky Free or Virgils Diet for sweeter tastes. My kids liked these.

Tea pops:
I used green iced tea to make some pops and had them pool side. They a were nice and refreshing, but nothing fancy. But maybe the Chocolate Teas would be even better, I will have to try that!

I moved from Colorado to California a little while ago, and lots of things got sold/given away/lost in the move. I had a whole collection of barely used popsicle molds before the move. Now I have none. Its frustrating. You can use dixie cups, ice cube trays, simple plastic molds or really fancy ones. I used the dixie cups with chop sticks cut in half for my experiments, but I think I might "splurge" for some of the neat molds (see below).

I thought these would be fun to try this summer and not a bad alternative for the kids too. I'm moving my kids to Low Sugar diets slowly, but surely. Have any of you tried this too? Leave your popsicle recipes in the comments!

I found some really neat molds at good prices at Amazon here:
  

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The Summer of Amber

For some reason, I always relate a little to closely to George Costanza, from the TV show Seinfeld. In one of my early Blog Posts I relived an episode where George finds a perfectly fine pastry in the trash, and proceeds to eat it. My baby goes to 1st Grade in the Fall, which means I should join the ranks of the working again. So this time I can relate to the "Summer of George", where he takes the summer off to focus just on himself. So that is where my last hurrah, my Summer of Amber, comes in.  It ended badly for George Costanza, as many things do for him. He wore dirty clothes, ate too much, and in the end fell due to atrophied muscles (from doing nothing all summer).



What's my plan for the Summer of Amber? Well, I have big plans that don't include Frolf (Frisbee Golf, according to George). Number #1 is my kids. We are planning Mommy School and I plan to get my boys over the reading/spelling hump that they both are struggling with. I want to be a great Mom this summer. I want to do math on the sidewalk with chalk and teach them how to dive properly. I want to play and laugh with them, make homemade popsicles.  They have printed up their own money and written what tasks it will take to earn it. I have them making their beds, wiping down sinks and vacuuming. I feel like in a blink of the eye my little boys will be little men, but I still have this summer. I have big plans.

I will also work on my other writing projects a little bit.  I'll be posting over at Android Mom where I write about Android (Droid, Nexus One, EVO, Incredible) smartphones for Moms, kids and the family and contributing more to Yo!Ladies an e-zine where I contribute articles (somewhat irregularly!).

Diet wise, I am keeping it all the same. For maintenance I am not really changing anything. I am dealing with Kidney Stones right now, and the stress and pain from it have been a diet challenger (I'll write all about that later). But I am holding pretty steady and have finally broken my obsession with weighing everyday. My goal this summer is to just keep on keeping on the Belly Fat Cure. I do want to take my "run/hikes" and turn them into just plain "runs" this summer too. I don't know where I will find the time for that, though. I'll write more about my exercise soon.

I also plan on doing lots of reading, while the kids swim or play at the park. Here are a few of the books I have on my library list or have ordered from Amazon:

 

What are your big plans for the summer?

Monday, June 7, 2010

Reader Profile: The Yates Family

I met the Yates Family at the Belly Fat Cure Event about a month ago. Jorge Cruise brought them up on stage and had them tell a little bit about their weight loss experience. I wrote in my little notebook "Find the Yates Family!" as a note to myself to look for them on the breaks. They were such a neat family, all really supporting each other. I found them to really honest with their eating issues, which was important for me to come to terms with myself.

Their story goes something like this. Dad, Chris, bought the Belly Fat Cure book when it came out fully intending to read it and start the diet... but alas never did. The Daughter, Jessica who is 17 yrs old, found the book around the house, picked it up and started the plan on her own. Jessica had lost lots of weight already when they heard about a local San Diego group Jorge was starting on his Fast Track program that is in development. Mom, Susan, decided she would go along for support, but quickly bought into the plan too.

The things the struck me most about this family: Jessica's determination at such a young age, Chris's honesty about his issues with food (I'm a closet eater too, so I can really relate) and Susan's reasons for wanting to lose weight (let's just say she got the day's biggest response from the crowd). While Jessica is the weight loss rock star of the family, they have lost a total of 112 lbs together in a very short amount of time.

 

I feel like I need to apologize for talking too much in this interview, but I was really impressed with Jessica. At 17, I wouldn't be too far off with saying I was dumb as a rock. But here she is taking control of her eating habits, instead of blaming and being satisfied with the status quo. We could all learn a lot from her I think.

I recently had the chance to catch up with the family and ask a few more questions.
Q. What are your favorite snacks?
Stuffed mushrooms with boursin cheese
Trader Joe's Buffalo Chicken meatballs with celery and sugar free ranch (made with heavy whipping cream/water mixture instead of milk)
Salami with cream cheese inside Deviled eggs


Q. What is the hardest part of the day & how do you overcome it?
Probably evening - I take heavy whipping cream and whip it in the Magic Bullet with cinnamon or cocoa powder, put in crushed pecans, whip cream and shaved dark chocolate on top. Top with 1/2 purevia packet

Q. What is your favorite meal? 
We make a chicken treiyaki with Purevia, with vegetable kebobs that is to die for!

Q. Best piece of advice?
Your perception is your reality, so if you say you "have" to eat something it is a chore. We have the mindset that we "get" to eat like this as a priviledge, and most people don't have that chance. Health is a choice. You decide what level of health you live in.

Recently Jorge posted a video of Jessica on Facebook, you can check that out HERE. Congrats to the Yates family for your wonderful success on the plan! Thank you for being a wonderful example of a family supporting one another and getting healthy together.

If you would like to get your family dieting together, take a minute and show them this video. But if they aren't ready to make that commitment, don't let it stop or derail you. Everyone needs to come to the point on their own, like the Yates Family did. Maybe you can be the "Jessica" and show them how its done!

(Special thanks to Ryan from Ryan's Incredible World Blog for being my cameraman on my first ever interview!)

Giveaway Winner: Amazing Grass

We have winners!
Riverview church of God BFC Support Group
Mari

I am really thrilled that one of the winners is a church group doing the Belly Fat Cure together! I hope you all do a taste test and let me know what you thought of the Amazing Grass products and which is your favorite! I can't wait to hear what Mari and the group thinks of it.

Thank you for entering and your kind comments! That is really how you show a blogger a little love, by leaving a comment ;-)  I was neat to realize I met so many of you at the Belly Fat Cure event in San Diego too. I feel honored you take time out of your busy days to read my blog!

I was most impressed with Barb's  Chocolate haiku:
oh dark chocolate
closeted in the pantry
but soon to be mine

I used Random.org to pick the winners, but next contest I want to pick based on comments! That seems funner, right? If you want to try the Amazing Grass head over to Whole Foods and pick up the single serving packet in the vitamin section. Make sure it the correction one, Amazing Grass Chocolate Green SuperFood. If you like it then order it from Amazon, they have a better price right now.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Amazing Grass Recipe

Amazing Grass Chocolate Drink Powder, Green Superfood, 8.5-Ounce ContainerApparently I forgot to say how I make my Amazing Grass Green Chocolate Superfood drinks! Any low sugar shake is great for a snack, particularly in the evening for me, because that is tough eating time for me. They can also be good for a meal replacement at times or even breakfast. Here is how I make mine:

8 oz of unsweetened milk product (see next paragraph)
1 scoop of Chocolate Green Superfood
1 Tbsp Flaxseed oil
1 Tbsp of Chia seeds (ground flaxseed is good too, this is just for added fiber)

Add the milk and Chia seeds to blender pitcher. I let the Chia seeds soak in the milk for 5 minutes. You don't have to, but the will completely disappear if you do. Otherwise they are a little crunchy. Add the powder and flaxseed and blend well. I really recommend a blender for this product, it tends to clump otherwise.

Alternatively: Add ice before blending for more of shake consistency. You can add a 1/2 of Uncles Sams cereal to the top of your glass right before you serve. Makes for a gret breakfast that way!

It is very important to make this shake with a low sugar liquid, like So Delicious Unsweetened Coconut Milk or unsweetened almond. Some brands of unsweetened soy milk are also okay I have seen lately. The Whole Foods dude will tell you to make it with apple juice or milk, but that defeats the whole point if it on the Belly Fat Cure.

Do you have a great recipe for Amazing Grass drinks?

Be sure and enter the giveaway! I'll do the drawing on Monday at noon. Enter it by leaving comment the the blog post at the LINK HERE ONLY.

I also enjoyed their other drinks, made simply with water (but the Chocolate is my favorite):

  

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

What I Eat on the Belly Fat Cure

The most common question I get here is "What exactly are you eating?" on the Belly Fat Cure. So I thought I'd list my typical meals here. That being said, I really just follow one rule: Stay within 5 sugar grams and 2 carb servings per meal and no artificial sweeteners. I highly recommend tracking everything you eat to get the exact S/C Values. My Fitness Pal or the Official Belly Fat Cure App are both options (I recommend My Fitness Pal though).

Breakfast:
I eat my cereal without a "milk" product because I really didn't like the way they tasted the one time I added Unsweetened Almond Milk (USAM). Plus the little bit of Sugar/Carbs in USAM put me into 3 carb servings. I love it dry now. I like getting tons of fiber for Breakfast, just in case the rest of my day is bad.

Dry Cereal - 1serving of Uncles Sams, Shredded Wheat or Perky's Crunchy Flax. Since I've reached my goal weight I have added a couple of Blackberries some days.
Coffee - with cream and Benefiber. Must. have. coffee.

  

Lunch:
This is the most difficult meal for me, one I used to skip pre-BFC. I usually have one of the following. I don't have much for lunch any more, but I try to eat it early before I get hungry. If I wait until I'm really hungry, I overeat.

Tuna Salad or Turkey Sandwich - w/ Sprouted Flaxseed bread mostly open faced (1 bread slice) nowadays, 1/4 Cup Cottage Cheese, pickle
Crispbreads - GG Crispbreads w/ cream cheese and smoked Salmon, 1/4 C Raspberries. These are a great source of fiber, but you have to order them online.
Sausage and Sauerkraut - Jorge suggestions sauerkraut because certain brands have live probiotics.
Work Lunch - My Husband's work has the most incredible lunches. The tray photo is from that and is loaded full of Low Sugar high protein items like ceviche, green veggies, pork and sashimi.

 
Dinner:
My (already thin) Husband was kind enough to accept BFC meals for dinner in exchange for a thinner wife. I don't do anything fancy anyone, and I'm a bit of a failure here as you can see! We are also not big beef eaters, as you can see, but beef is certainly okay on the Belly Fat Cure:

Protein - Grilled Chicken or Fish, sauted Asparagus or Zucchini (with sea salt & olive oil) w/ a small Spinach Salad
Tacos - Ground Turkey or Grilled Chicken Tacos loaded up with Spinach, Avocado and a little sour cream and low sugar Salsa. And of course the Smart & Delicious tortillas.
Pita Pizza -  low sugar pita w/ a TBSP of Trader Joes pasta sauce, mozzerella cheese and pepperoni and a Spinach Salad.
Cheeseburger - Try it with no bun or the Thin Buns from Earthgrains.
Huevos Ranchero - 2 Eggs w/ cheese, little sour cream & low sugar salsa over a toasted tortilla (sometimes minus the tortilla). Sometimes I'll have sausage patties or bacon with it. If my Husband isn't around for dinner I'll make this
Eggs of any kind - For a super low S/C Value meal when the Husband isn't around I'll like make just eggs for dinner. Here is an omelet with sauted mushrooms, avocado and a little bit of cottage cheese with ground flax seed sprinkled on top of it all (for added fiber).

Snacks:
During the day, between meals or when I've missed a meal (which sadly still happens, but not very often), I sometimes need a snack.
Hulled Sunflower Seeds -  SO good! I'm allergic to many nuts (I breakout in cystic acne that makes a teenager looked like Nicole Kidman in comparison).
Macadamia Nuts - These many be hard to find, but as nuts go they have the best S/C Value, low sugar/carbs and great fiber. I discovered them on vacation in Hawaii recently and found them at Costco later.
Cheese - I like the kids cheese sticks and Babybel cheeses in the afternoon
Pirate's Booty - This stuff is TOO good and I usually go back for more unfortunately
Celery - A couple of stalks of celery, sometimes with a little cream cheese, is really filling
Cucumber - Sliced up cucumbers, maybe a little tuna or cheese on them (sometimes lately, I've had this for lunch) and sprinkled with a little sea salt.


Eating Out:
Eating out seems like it may be difficult on the Belly Fat Cure, but it's not. Basically I start by looking for the protein on the menu, something not fried, dipped or coated in carbs or a sugary sauce. Then I substitute the grains (I don't have grains or starches at restaurants, because I don't know their S/C Value) with Green Veggies.

Sushi - I love Sushi, but I try and stick with the Sashimi (just the fish sliced, no rice) or have only a couple of pieces of Sushi roll. I skip the Tempura now, but still get a Spider Roll and share it.
Protein Burger - Basically a Cheeseburger with no bun, maybe wrapped in lettuce, minus onions, tomatoes and ketchup. Skip the fries and ask for a side salad instead... although if this is your whole meal you are allowed some French Fries. Fast food to fancy places, I ask for this all the time.
Seafood - One of these photos is from favorite place to eat in Half Moon Bay. It is Grilled Shrimp, wrapped in bacon with Broccolini. It usually somes over garlic mashed potatoes, which technically I could have some of, but I substitute that for sauted spinach. There are hidden sugar and carbs in restaurant meals, so I avoid the obvious ones.
Cobb or Chef Salad - This can be really satisfying and has tons of protein in it. I frequently get one of these salad when I eat out.


Splurges and Dessert:
Okay, so I consider myself on the Belly Fat Cure 100% of the time. I don't go off plan a big night out or a holiday. So if I'm going to splurge on something, it is something allowed on the plan but that I don't have very often.

Sake - I love cold sake! When we go out to eat Sushi, I love to get a flight of Sake or the kind in the wooden box that they over pour (for good luck!). This is cold sake, not the disgusting warm kind ;-) It has about the same S/C Value as white wine.
Dark Chocolate - I HATED dark chocolate when I started this plan. Bitter was all I tasted, but now I love it. The best to me is Green & Black's 85% Dark Chocolate. Try several yourself and be the judge though! In the beginning I would have a whole serving, but now I try to be satisfied with just a square.
Hot Tea - I have hot tea in the evenings when I want something after dinner. It has been become a big habit these last few months. I prefer a decaf, rich tea and right now I'm loving Chocolate Teas with one packet of a stevia sweetener for the whole pot and a little cream.
Cinnamon Crisp - I make these for special ocasions and the holidays. I will probably make this for my birthday too, instead of cake.
Shakes - Jay Robb or Amazing Grass are a great Dessert. Made with Unsweetened Almond Milk keeps them low in Sugar and Carb. I have them sometimes as a meal replacement (but only on a rare occasion).  If you make the with lots of ice, it is just like ice cream.

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