Thursday, May 31, 2012

Sugar Addict!

So it has been some time since I sat down to write. Mainly because I have been VERY unhealthy... I am a sugar addict. I know exactly what I should eat and when I should eat it. But there is a little part of my brain that screams "Give me Sugar". When I give into that craving, it spirals into a binge of sugar that can last weeks until I come up with the control to say no. When people say they are addicted to sugar, it's true. I was recently told that if I look at crap foods as drugs, my brain may make a different connection with food. When I find myself leaving the house just to get ice cream or my addiction, poptarts, I have to start telling myself I am going to meet with my crack dealer. It's probably just as bad for me.

I read in a textbook one time that sugar is not addicting, but I think that is absolutely false. When I quit smoking (yes I did smoke- grossest habit ever), the first two weeks were the hardest. All I thought about was the cigarette despite the fact I knew it was killing me. It's the SAME thing with sugar. When I detox my body of sugar or anything white for that matter, all that goes through my head is "I want sugar". It's probably not this way for everyone. But it is for me. So I have decided I need to cut the craving for good because clearly I am TIRED of battling two weeks of cravings for ONE cookie.

So, how do I cut the cravings? I stay away from ALL white products and sugar. I do not condone giving up carbs. Your body needs them to function properly. So I stick to the carbs that will absorb slower and not make my blood glucose spike. When you eat anything white or any kind of sugar, your blood glucose spikes and when it crashes, you get the craving again. Brown rice, 100% whole wheat anything is the way to go. And it's even better if you add a little good fat or protein. This drastically decreases the absorption rate.

Some good options: Apple with Reduced Fat Peanut Butter. Fruit is pure sugar. Even though it is good sugar, it can still cause a crash. So if you balance it with low fat cheese or reduced fat peanut butter, the protein and fat will help make it absorb slower.

Spinach salad with mandarin oranges, almonds, and low fat dressing. Great balance of carbs and fat. Add some grilled chicken and you have the perfect balanced meal.

So as I fight the cravings for the next 12 days (I have went two so far and I haven't be evil :-) ) I hope to have some encouragement from all of you!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Why exercise?

Why not?

Hmmm, I can come up with many excuses not to exercise. I am too busy, I go to school so I should study instead of work out. Or my knee hurts, my back hurts, I have a headache. The truth, however, is that I usually end up watching Will and Grace instead of studying and my back, knee, and headache is usually BETTER when I work out.

Exercise has always been frustrating for me. Right now I am eating around 1200 calories a day and doing Kettle Bell workouts. Guess what? I am gaining weight. How is this possible? Well my body is probably in shock and I am gaining muscle. I don't know if this is true, but I really believe when you start working out your body swells because you are actually using your muscles and it needs time to adjust. But it is very frustrating to work so hard and not see the scale move. So of course I need to get off the scale and remind myself, I am doing this to live a longer life, not lose weight.

As your body ages, you lose lean muscle mass. Lean body mass helps burn fat and actually helps protect your body. That's why resistance training is so important. Which is why I have been doing Kettle Bells. It's a great workout for both cardio and resistance, plus it's only 20 minutes 3 times a week. Works for me!

I have noticed that when I work out, my body feels better. I have knee pain and lower back pain when I don't work out. And yet when I strengthen my muscles all that goes away. Most back pain is due to core muscles being too weak. We are not made to sit all day. This weakens our core muscles and gives us more pain! And my knee pain comes from my leg muscles not holding my knee cap in place correctly. So by not working out, I am actually causing myself pain. I think the two weeks of soreness is worth the decrease in pain.

Pilates is a great way to tighten your core.
And simple walking is a great cardio workout.
Work on flexibility and balance! 
Start small and eventually you will reach a point where you feel better. Your body will feel good, your heart will be happy, and your mood will increase.

Today's tip: Get up and get moving! Your body and heart will love you.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Food Hangover

It's the day after you had a very unhealthy day of eating. What do you do? Well yesterday was one of those days for me. Sunday I ate Jose Tejas- which consisted of a Burro, chips, and french fries. Then Applegate Farms Ice Cream- chocolate chip mint in a waffle cone. I won't lie that was totally worth it. And then I had some Chinese food and a piece of ice cream cake. Talk about unhealthy. Now normally I would be so ashamed of what I ate, I would hide it and not tell anyone. Instead, I'm blogging it. Days like this happen. It's how you deal with the Food Hangover that keeps you on track to where you want to be in your healthy lifestyle. There is nothing worse than waking up groggy, thirsty, and feeling like you got hit by a truck. Unhealthy foods can make you feel this way just like alcohol. So how did I deal with it?

Yesterday, I was bloated, tired, and overall cranky. The sugar running through my blood made me want more ice cream, plus cookies, and brownies... oh and everything in sight. Sugar affects me in a way crack affects an addict. I should know better by now to avoid it, however since life does get in the way, I will have to learn to deal with the cravings. So I drank a lot of water to rid the bloating from the increase in sodium. I probably took in 5000mg of sodium. Max should be 2500mg, so you could imagine how bloated I was. I tried to stick to whole foods. Processed would just make my sodium increase even more. The trick to the food hangover is getting right back on track. Don't give in to the cravings that are telling you to eat that giant white bagel. A typical Jersey bagel contains close to 1,000 mg of sodium and over 50g of Carbs. And if you are having a white bagel, that's 200 calories of bleached flour. You are basically consuming pure sugar. That's what white bread gives you. NOTHING! Stick to the 100% Whole Wheat, especially when trying to rid sugar cravings.

After a day of eating unhealthy, get right back to it. Consume lots of water, fruits, vegetables, and unprocessed foods. When life gets in the way, take yours back and control it!

Quick tip: It can take up to 14 days to rid sugar cravings!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


Today for lunch I made toasted Kale chips! Kale is a super food because it is loaded with nutrients. There are so many ways you can use it. I have used it in salad as my lettuce. It has a stronger taste than romaine, but not as strong as spinach. I have sauteed it with fresh garlic and olive oil. But toasting has been my favorite so far. Kale has an extra crispiness that makes it great!

Kale's Benefits

Spray Butter
Garlic Powder

Rinse and completely dry the kale. Chop it up into bite size pieces. Place it on a pan or tin foil. Lightly spray with spray butter. Sprinkle on some salt and garlic powder. Try to limit the salt since we consume too much to begin with. Place it in the toaster oven until the edges start to brown. The drier the Kale, the crispier. Enjoy!

This can also be made in the oven. I would bake it at 375 until the edges start to brown.

Diet History

How come I have spent my entire life dieting and I am still fat? I have looked back at my dieting history and realized I have lost and gained at least 300 pounds in my life! THREE HUNDRED. No wonder it's so hard to lose weight. I have NO metabolism. Every time I yo-yo, my metabolism goes out of whack.

My very first diet was when I was twelve years old. My sister and I did some crash diet that came with pills to speed up your metabolism. I didn't take the pills, but I did the diet. The diet consisted of 900 calories. I was 12 and eating 900 calories. Really? The prime time for me to be receiving all the nutrients I needed I was eating 900 calories! This would explain why I am five foot nothing! Now, maybe I was supposed to be only five feet tall, but no 12 year old should be eating 900 calories a day. No person should be eating only 900 calories a day. You need at least 1200 to receive all the nutrients your body needs. So not only was I starving, I was depriving my body of what I needed.

Then came high school and eventually good old Weight Watchers. I am in no way going to bash Weight Watchers. I think it can be a great tool for weight loss if done right. But using 12 points for food and another 10 points in Vodka was probably not the healthiest way I could live. Yep, that's right. Freshman year in college I wanted to drink, so I used all my points on alcohol and let's just say I did not have the best results that night. I didn't read the book where it says concentrate on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, etc. I read... You get 22 points a day. YAY! That's like 9 cookies I can totally do this.... NOT healthy.

After losing and gaining and losing and gaining, I decided to try South Beach. It's actually probably one of the healthiest diet plans out there. However, did you know that eating all whole grains, fruits, cheese, meat, etc can make you fat if you eat too much of it. What a concept. Again, I skipped ahead in the book to read eat this, don't count calories. Well okay, that sounds easy enough. I can have two eggs with cheese on whole wheat bread- a total of probably 500 calories, just for breakfast. You cannot lose weight that way. Not to mention, the first two weeks are Carb Free to cut the sugar cravings. You might as well have shot me. I probably would have suffered less for two weeks. I couldn't have a conversation with my closest family and friends without looking at them like they were Hershey Kisses.

After all the crash dieting and unhealthy eating, I finally went to a registered dietitian. She absolutely taught me how to eat healthy. I was eating real foods, feeling awesome, and losing weight. Wow! Is it that easy? My blood pressure even dropped. The only reason I am no longer seeing her is because I have to do this for myself. No crash dieting, just healthy eating. You will never feel better than eating what your body wants, not what your brain wants. The voices in my head tell me all I want is chocolate brownies, so instead I grab a banana. It's just as sweet and it's FULL of nutrients.

Tip #1, when you want something sweet find your favorite fruit and eat that instead. I promise that you can start to re-train your brain.

Happy eating!


I am not a nutritionist. I am in school to eventually be one. But everything I talk about in my blog is my opinion and things that work for me. If you have health issues, please talk to a professional. :-) With that said, I hope you enjoy reading this!

Monday, April 30, 2012


I am a skinny girl trapped in a chubby girl's body. My entire life I have struggled to get skinny, to no avail. Why? Because my entire life I have focused on being skinny, not being healthy. This is NOT a weight loss blog. I am not on here to talk about how many pounds I lose, or how many inches have melted off. I am here to talk about how putting the right foods in my mouth will ultimately change my life. Do I want to lose weight? Absolutely, who doesn't. I have always pictured myself in a skimpy red dress. But the truth is I would rather be healthy and curvy than skinny and sick.

I recently lost 65 pounds with a dietitian. I had hit my highest weight of 261 pounds. Something I didn't even think I could hit. My dietitian helped me shed those pounds fast. But at the first emotional roller coast, I was out the door. Just like every other time I was on a "diet". Again, the yo-yo started and before I could blink I had gained 15 pounds back.

I am a graduate student studying Nutrition and Food Science. Why did I feel that I needed to see a dietitian when i was learning what I should eat? So I decided to take my life into my own hands. If I am going to help someone else, it's time I help myself. And thus.... I have changed my life. In the last two months, I have not lost weight. But I have maintained. And this in itself is one HUGE victory for me. Every day will bring another challenge. Living healthy is not easy. But living healthy is the only way. I hope you follow me on my journey and learn some things while you do it!