So I don't have pictures today. And hey, maybe that's a good thing! Just words and links. There's a big movement in the Pinterest world right now to make sure all Pins are linked back to their original creator. I've been going through my Pin boards and deleting Pins that don't have links to the original post. Now, I'm not sitting around hours on end doing this. It's going to be a long slow process (5 minutes here, 5 minutes there), and it's going to be only cooking, baking, and craft/art work for now. I don't know if it's important, and the masses of Pinners probably don't care, but I'd want my original work linked back to me, so I will take the time to care for others. I guess.
Let's get on with the goods!
We're trying (and I loosely mean "trying") a whole foods diet. Husband watched a documentary called "Forks Over Knives" and got a little freaked out. He's a meat and potatoes guy by nature, so this is very shocking to us as a family that he wanted to switch to a whole foods diet. I don't think that a whole foods diet can be described as vegetarian or vegan. It's just whole, natural food, no meat, no dairy, no sugar. No sugar substitutes, either. I mean, what in the world are we supposed to eat?! That just took everything GOOD off the table! So me, being a culinary student and looking for a challenge (and not really liking meat that much anyway as I gave up red meat over a year ago) said, Sure! Let's do this!!
Difficult is an understatement. It's hard, and you do nothing but think of all the foods you CAN'T eat. I see someone eating a big juicy hamburger... I don't like red meat, but I want that hamburger for the sole reason that I can't have it! I saw someone chowing down on Reese's Peanut Butter cups. Normally, I don't like them. I could pass one by easily and it wouldn't bother me that I am not eating one. However, my mind went into immediate, I WANT ONE NOW mode, just because I can't eat them.
The secret to all successful diets (IE Weight Watchers) is to NOT deprive yourself of anything. Keep eating chocolate, keep eating beef, keep eating dairy, ice cream, cheese, bread, etc. Just learn how to use moderation and be accountable for the fact that if you use up all your points, or calories, on sugary sweets, then you're done for the day. The idea of the whole foods diet is to enrich your body with whole, all natural foods. Animal based foods are not whole foods. Sadly :( With a whole foods diet we're talking whole grains, fruits, veggies, anything direct from the ground and unprocessed. Vegans and vegetarians will still indulge in some processed foods, or additives, within the parameters of their "beliefs" and strictness. They will still eat sugar, and sugar additives, and vegetarians can still eat some seafood, eggs, and milk products, depending on how strict they are. With the whole foods diet, you get none of that. (Nothing fun! hehehe!! Shhh... I didn't say that!)
A few paragraphs up I stated that we're "loosely" following the whole foods diet. The kids and I are being liberal with it. I'm not giving up dairy, but have given up meat and sweets/junk food. I had already decided to give up sweets for Lent anyway, as did Drew and Louisa. (Hunter gave up video games!) Drew, Louisa and Hunter can still eat what they want at school, but they have all chosen healthy options so far.
Dinner has been interesting. To say the least. Figuring out how to get enough protein for everyone, when only one of us likes beans, isn't fun. I really don't want to eat beans. I'm trying, I really am. I don't like them Sam I Am. Especially every day! We need to find other options, or add a little meat back here and there.
So far, here are the recipes that I had pinned on Pinterest that we have tried:
Easy Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers (please make sure you use a white bean for this! but over all, these were good. We just used the wrong kind of bean.... I'll leave it at that ;)
Black Beans and Rice (I used pinto beans)
Breakfast Cookie (and here's an example where I can't give credit where credit is due. Obviously I didn't check this one! But the recipe for this is 1 1/2 cup oatmeal, 3 mashed RIPE bananas, 1 cup applesauce, 1/2 cup raisins. Mix it all up, drop spoonfuls on cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. I added cinnamon and 1/4 cup milled flax seed.)
Two recipes I've made up so far are:
Peanut Butter Oatmeal (tastes like PB cookie dough)~
1/2 cup quick rolled oats, 2 tbsp peanut butter, soy milk, 1 mashed ripe banana
To make this I put the oats in a bowl, covered them with soy milk, and then microwaved for about a minute and a half total. I like my oatmeal mushy, so that's why I don't have an exact measurement of soy milk. I mixed in the PB and mashed banana. This was very hearty and wholesome and kept me full for the whole morning. The problem is that I ate it on Monday morning of this week, and I didn't realize I had strep throat, so the PB irritated the living daylights out of my throat. I couldn't eat anything else all day, so I was glad this was in my system! haha!
Pumpkin Pie Pancakes~
Use your normal pancake recipe. For the "whole foods" version you will need to use only whole wheat flour (I have King Arthur's White Whole Wheat), and an egg substitute. I just went ahead and used eggs. I had two cups of flour, two eggs, one tsp baking powder, and a touch of canola oil. In the whole foods diet it's acceptable to use plant based oils, but very sparingly. They really encourage using water instead of oil wherever possible. In place of milk I used vanilla soy milk. For the "pumpkin pie" part, I added half the can of pumpkin (15 oz can, I think!) and cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves to taste. I love the taste of nutmeg and cloves with my pumpkin, so tend to add a little more than others might. After you mix that all up, make your pancakes!
Louisa had a friend spend the night last weekend, so the morning after I made these. Everyone seemed to really like them!
We're a week in to our Whole Foods diet. I can't say I have a lot of energy, or that I feel refreshed, or any of the feelings that you're supposed to feel. But I can say I'm challenging myself and really shaking things up. We'll get this figured out and find some go-to recipes that we all enjoy. Maybe a few that have protein without beans :) That would be great!
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