We’ve talked about a lot of Magic Foods – and the book talks about a lot more; there are 57 different entries – but now it’s time for a few tips on how to make it all work for us.
In many ways BREAKFAST
really is the most important meal of the day – start the day right and you are more likely to stay off the Blood Sugar roller-coaster – and eat less – all day long.
Limit high-carb breads to only one serving instead of two and go for the grainy types.
Choose lower GL cereals with at least 5 grams of fibre per serving. High Fibre bran based cereals are good, as is oatmeal.
Totally avoid the white carbs as much as you possibly can.
Have eggs; sprinkle nuts or berries on the cereal; put Peanut Butter on the toast – but get a good serving of Protein
Have some fruit, preferably whole; but if you must have juice, make it just a small glass.
can be tough, especially if you have to eat away from home.
if possible, make your lunch at home and switch your sandwich bread to whole grain and layer on lots of vegetables if you can.
at the restaurant, look for salad if possible and have it with a vinaigrette type of dressing; not creamy.
If you must have a fast-food sandwich, ask for mustard instead of mayo. Dispose of one half of the bread or bun.
Stay as far away as possible from the fries and chips – they always smell better than they taste anyway.
Favour fruit to finish the meal, if at all possible.
Drink only water if you can; or at least choose a diet soft-drink or unsweetened iced tea.
Here is a little good news, SNACKS
are good for you. It really isn’t a good idea to make the long haul from lunch to dinner without a “little something” in your stomach. Just watch out for making the wrong choices.
Again, if you are at work, pack a snack to take with you. Most fruit and vegetables travel and keep well without even needing refridgeration.
Stay away from chips or pretzels, candy bars, or just about anything else that comes out of a vending machine.
Try to work in some protein – nuts or seeds; LF cheese; FF milk or yogurt.
Most families find DINNER
time can be really chaotic. You can get a well-balanced and Magic Meal on the table without it taking hours of time, though.
Limit yourself to one or two servings of starch – pasta, rice, potatoes, etcetera. No big plates of spaghetti.
Have a reasonable serving of good quality, lean protein.
Fill those empty spaces on your plate with – you guessed it – low carb vegetables. You can use frozen, they do retain all their good stuff. Stay away from the butter and other heavy, cream-laden sauces. Sprinkle on a little vinegar or lemon juice.
Even if you already have vegetables on your plate, have a salad with a vinegar-based dressing. It’s almost impossible to eat too many salad greens. Once again, save time and effort by using pre-packaged, pre-washed greens.
Leave the bread at the store. You really don’t need it; especially if you’ve already had some at breakfast and/or lunch. Besides, you’ll only want to slather on the butter anyway and that adds loads of calories and bad fat.
Again – stay away from soft drinks. Water is best or a small glass of wine.
Put the food on the plates, do not bring the serving dishes to the table – makes it too easy to reach for unneeded seconds.
Everyone likes DESSERT
; but, nowhere do the evils of white flour, white sugar, and saturated fat collide more perfectly than in those cakes and pasteries. An otherwise Magic Meal can be destroyed with the addition of a high GI/GL dessert item. You can almost feel the blood sugar soaring.
Think fruit, it should always be your first choice.
Watch portion sizes – especially if you do go for a higher carb item. The truth is, you can eat almost anything if the portion is small enough. A tiny dish of ice cream topped with fruit or a sliver of cake topped with fruit – the fruit topping seems to make the tiny bite so much more satisfying.
Look for pasteries and cakes made with whole grains and go low fat and NSA ice creams and frozen treats (although you often have to settle for one or the other – someday the manufacturers will figure it out). Try to use low fat cheese in cheesecakes and toppings.
Lastly, stop thinking that the meal is not complete without dessert. Have it only once or twice a week; unless it’s fruit or yogurt. Save the other stuff for a special treat.
On Monday . . . a bit of a wrap-up and some suggestions for further reading.