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Food Talk And Fabulous Finds Recipes, Healthy Cooking, and General Food Topics

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View Poll Results: How many times in the last week did your diet include food you love?
Everyday, if I don't love it then I don't eat it 27 56.25%
Doesn't matter, the important thing is will it make me gain weight? 3 6.25%
Never, my diet doesn't allow it 1 2.08%
Two or three times but only after a hard workout 0 0%
5-7, I work hard to incorporate flavors I like, that are great for me, and are healthy. 18 37.50%
Always, thats why I need to lose weight! 2 4.17%
Other, (I ran out of things to say) 1 2.08%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 48. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-19-2006, 01:46 AM   #1
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Exclamation Let's Cook!!

Here's the thing, I am about to vent a little here so prepare... I have been thinking a lot about this weight I carry around and of course about the food I am putting in my body. But with everything I have to worry about in my life I don't, definitely don't, want to get carried away on a "diet".

I want to enjoy eating healthy , I don't want to moan and groan about the hardship of eating a boiled egg every morning! So what is my point???? It is more an idea actually...I want to cook and eat and I want to enjoy food more now than I ever did before. I don't, let me repeat don't, want to be scared of food or count every calorie. The problem with me is that I have disrespected my body enough by feeding it junk aka overprocessed crap.

So here is what I have done, I am out to find the best healthiest food out there to put in my body, not food that will just help me lose weight, because come on this is not about eating rice cakes. Healthy means good for your heart, your mind, and your body (no insult to the rice cake just not my thing). This is about what we put in our body and how much we put in it. I am willing to work on both, but I am not willing to sacrifice the enjoyment of food when there are great options that taste great.

So if anyone is interested in talking about great food and tasty weight loss then lets go...
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Old 07-19-2006, 02:28 AM   #2
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I only have one question - is it possible to insult a rice cake? I mean, the nicest thing you can say about it is that it tastes like packing peanuts.....
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Old 07-19-2006, 02:33 AM   #3
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Hmm, well, by creative and (sometimes) authoritarian use of portion control, matched with a few of the more basic calorie and fat-reducing cooking techniques (only those that do not have a detrimental effect on the quality of the dish), I find that there are no recipies that I am not able to cook and eat while still losing weight.

Examples that often make my plate: creamy chicken lasagna, chicken and tuna casseroles, runzas (beef, cabbage, and cheese baked in a bread dough), chicken cordon bleu, crab rangoon, quesedillas, brownies, ice cream, cakes, pies. and on and on. I also eat plenty of veggies, but I wouldn't say that any of those dishes would be shocking to a traditional diet plan. And, of course, there are a lot of main dishes, sides and desserts that are delicious and even easier on the "calorie bank account".

What I have done, though, is switch from a diet almost completely comprised of restaurant provided food (and pre-packaged meals) to one that is made at home. I have the control over what is put in the dish, and the size of the portion put on the plate. And yes, the food can be controlled while still being tasty!
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The things I believe:

Cal in < Cal out = weight loss
All foods can fit into a healthy diet, some just need to be in smaller portions.
Variety is the spice of life: eat a new dish, play a new game, or go to a new place every week.
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Old 07-19-2006, 02:41 AM   #4
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Is it possible to avoid the struggle by eating great food and still losing weight. Portion control is key but I can eat a great salad with balsamic and olive oil and not feel like I surrendered anything. I can eat a terrific stir fry and enjoy every minute. I think it is possible to lose weight and eat great, I want that for my life. I will lose this weight I really know that I will, I will because at the end of the day it is about being healthy and happy, happy about what I put in my body and healthy because I put it there.
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Old 07-19-2006, 04:15 AM   #5
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I have found that I have given up a lot of the recipes I used to make before I was counting calories. There are a lot of things on Andoreth's list that I don't think I could fit into my calorie budget. I look at every lasagna recipe I can find, but I have yet to find one that is low enough in calories (my dinner needs to be under 400 calories per serving) and has a portion size that seems like it would be filling. I only eat 1400 calories per day, so there's just not a lot of room for pasta and for desserts. I have a section in my recipe file for "retired" recipes--i.e., recipes I used to make but don't anymore.

But, I have replaced the recipes I've given up with new recipes, many of which I really like. In fact, my SO commented to me the other day that one benefit of my calorie restriction is that I've found a lot of new recipes that we both really like. I let my subscription to Everyday Foods lapsed and instead now subscribe to Cooking Light.

I do count every calorie, though. I tried to lose weight by just focusing on eating healthy foods and it didn't work for me--not even a little. I also eat a lot less pasta, a lot less cheese, and a lot less baked goods and almost no desserts. But I've found other foods, like polenta, that I really like. Energy bars and low calorie pudding have become my substitute for sweets. Eventually, when I get to maintanence, I expect to add some of these foods back to my diet in moderation.

I eat a lot more fresh fruits and vegetables. The farmers market is part of my weekly shopping and I could not survive without it. I don't eat foods that I don't like (well, there's one energy bar that I eat because it is low in calories and high in protein, but the taste is marginal) and there are a lot of foods that fit easily into my calorie budget that taste really good to me. In fact, I feel like I enjoy food more. I don't know if it is because I'm not allowing myself to get overly full and I'm frequently hungry by the time I'm eating, or if it because of all the rain we had in CA this spring, but the fruit and vegetables I've been getting at the farmers market seem to taste better than in past years.

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Old 07-19-2006, 10:38 AM   #6
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I eat food I love every day. I love the taste, the texture and what it does for my body. I enjoy food now more than I ever have.

Grilled chicken (no skin) - love it and even can portion control myself with it
Brussel sprouts - love them
Zucchini - my favorite, especially grilled.
Tomatoes - I can eat these by themselves, love them
Cucumbers - good to eat alone or with other veggies
Sweet Bell peppers - add some hummus and yum
Pickles - nice salty treat, especially good pickles (no vlassic, I'm talking deli pickles here)
Fruit - I used to gorge myself on fruit, but find eating 2-3 servings a day, I really enjoy it and take the time to enjoy it. Blueberries, strawberries, plums, apples, kiwi, nectarines...
Nonfat plain yogurt - enjoy it alone or with fruit, a nice sour taste
Natural peanut butter - Heavenly... need portion control here but it is oh so good
Chocolate - Super dark chocolate, occassionally. I can't express the joy I have when I eat just one square of a dark chocolate bar. I savor it and love it. More than I ever enjoyed an entire chocolate bar.

I could go on and on and on...

I eat very simply though. I have a rice cooker which I make rice once or twice a week (leftover rice is reheated throughout the week). I steam veggies or sautee them in water. I have a pressure cooker which I cook meat or sometimes I'll oven bake meat. I would say that I stay away from recipes, except once in a while when I use my crockpot. I love food, I've always loved food and I think I will always love food.
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Old 07-19-2006, 11:29 AM   #7
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I absolutely love the whole foods I eat and don't miss processed crap at all. Check out my Fitday, I love everything I eat and don't feel deprived. In fact, I feel radiant with health.

This was absolutely key for me - this is for the rest of my life. I couldn't possibly give up carbs my whole life, or live on ice berg salads and cottage cheese.

I have lost a lot of weight several times in my life. My goal was always to LOSE WEIGHT. When I hit my goal weight, I was done and could go back to eating the unhealthy crap that made me heavy in the first place. This time, my goal was to be HEALTHY - and there is nothing to stop, I want to eat this way to be healthy for the rest of my life. When I hit my goal weight, what I was eating didn't change, I just increased calories. I didn't make up the caloric difference with milkshakes and french fries, I just added MORE nutritionally powerful foods to what I was eating.

Here is my list of favorite healthy foods:

Fresh fruit - especially pomegranates, raspberries, cherries, tangelos and mangos

Hummus

Non fat latte

A really good stir fry over brown rice with lots of vegetables (orange pepper, shitake mushrooms, broccoli) and tofu

Baked sweet potatoes - in the oven, baked so long the sugar in the skin starts to caramalize (sp?)

Whole wheat tortilla, smeared with peanut butter, nuked for 30 seconds, wrapped around a banana

Dried granny smith apple rings from Trader Joe's (like candy)

Super fresh yellowtail sashimi

Home made guacamole with lots of lemon juice, black pepper, fresh tomatoes and red onions

Vine ripe tomatoes, just picked, still warm from the sun, sliced and sprinkled with a little salt

Whole cloves of roasted garlic

Trail mix - dried fruit and nuts, yum!

Waffles and natural peanut butter

Baked apple with blueberries

Warm, salty edamame

Red wine

Greek yogurt and blackberries (especially with a drizzle of dark honey)

Grilled vegetables - especially onions, asparagus, corn on the cob

Home made pizza with whole wheat crust, tomato sauce, spinach leaves, sun dried tomatoes, mushrooms, black olives and feta cheese

Cottage cheese with pineapple

Dark chocolate

Crusty bread dipped into olive oil and basalmic vinegar
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Old 07-19-2006, 11:31 AM   #8
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For the record, I hate rice cakes and egg whites and margarine!

I don't see the point if eating things I don't like.

My philosophy is to stick to eating fresh food and avoid processed food as much as possible.

This means no fast food, no frozen dinners, no pre-fab food out of a packet or box, no storebought cookies or other junkie items.

If you make it at home then at least you know what is going into it and there are no hidden fats, sugars or added chemicals. I refuse to eat mediocre or food just because it say's it's low fat or diet on the label. In fat about 2 years ago my DH and I rebelled against the low fat food industry because we were sick of eating diet food that didn't taste that great so we just switched over to eating smaller amounts of real food or making our own at home.

My husband and I rarely eat out now and when we do we pick a restaurant that serves really good food like and Indian or Vietnamese place.

We both work and have active social lives so we work with simple recipes with few ingredients for weekday meals and save the more time- consuming dinners for Sunday. If the recipe takes more than 30 minutes to cook, then I don't bother with it.

Making small changes in cooking methods, types and amounts of oils that you use, cutting back on salt and portion control all contribute to healthy cooking. Most of the recipes I use are low fat but if I see an ingredient I don't want to use then I leave it out or substitute something else in it's place. A couple of times a recipe has called for 2 tbs of oil to stirfry ingredients and I knew I could get away with less so I only used 1tbs. I always make a new recipe exactly as is then make adjustments to my own tastes the second time I make it.

Right now we are experimenting with vegetarian recipes and so far 5 out of five have turned out well.

I think this works for us because we menu plan and build our shopping list around a week's worth of meals and if an item is not on the list or we don't have a plan for it then we don't buy it. This reduces overbuying and wasting fruit and veggies and stops us from impulse buying things. We only buy what we need and incorporate healthy snacks into our plan. We also both brown bag our lunches to work except for Friday which is our lunch out with co-workers day. We've also save money doing this.
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Old 07-19-2006, 11:35 AM   #9
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If you're really interested in nutrionally powerful foods for long term health and disease preservation, join us over in this thread where we are talking about a book called Super Foods: 14 Foods That Can Change Your Life (this is the book that changed my life):

Super Foods

If you want, you can also read my very long weight loss journey thread. It specifically talks about how I switched from processed to whole foods and the results (warning, it is long!)

Glory's very long weight loss journey
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Old 07-19-2006, 11:44 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mauvaisroux
I think this works for us because we menu plan and build our shopping list around a week's worth of meals and if an item is not on the list or we don't have a plan for it then we don't buy it. This reduces overbuying and wasting fruit and veggies and stops us from impulse buying things. We only buy what we need and incorporate healthy snacks into our plan. We also both brown bag our lunches to work except for Friday which is our lunch out with co-workers day. We've also save money doing this.
I do exactly the same thing. I menu plan on Sunday, look up recipes, make shopping lists based on those recipes and then only buy the stuff on my list for healthy dinners/lunches/snacks for the week. Thursday is my lunch with coworkers day
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Old 07-19-2006, 12:10 PM   #11
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Default Great tips everyone

Sounds like we are all on the same page about food. The fat free industry is a gimmick and it sucks many people in, I heard recently that artificially produced fat free foods are not good because you lose a lot of the nutritional value. I along with most of you believe in moderation. I have gone to whole grains, and natural yogurts, I have cut out most desserts but believe in having a small piece of chocolate everyday. I make a mean salad, and soup is a staple in our home. I really believe that if you look at your life you can afford food that is great for you, especially when you cut out the fast food and morning lattes. Soup is one way I stay on a budget. Lets keep the food lists going because I am getting great ideas already! Some of the things I make include:

Baked chicken with tomatillos (can tomatillos) and a little water, I added brown rice to it last night.

Mixed greens with balsamic and EVOO (dressing goes a long way here), this is a great salad to add mandaran oranges, strawberries, or berries too.

I also do stir fry with brown rice...mmmm

Cucumber or watermelon with lime salt and chili powder...a power punch of flavor

Hummus, love hummus with toasted pita or rice crackers

smoothies, or an orange julius (4-6 oz of juice goes along way)

I am now a fan of turkey bacon

Chicken soup with roasted vegetables

Egg white omelet (add one yolk, spinach and touch of feta or olives)



Glory87 your list of foods closely resembles my own that its almost freaky.
Nelie, eat some brussel sprouts for me because I abhor them!
Thanks to everyone!
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Old 07-19-2006, 01:44 PM   #12
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My food list:

Broccoli (a superfood )
Cauliflower
Potatoes (once a week)
Green beans
Asparagus
Tomatoes (another good one)
Romaine lettuce
Leaf lettuce
"Spring Mix" greens
Spinach
Cucumbers
Radishes
Peppers (red, yellow, green, orange)
Red onions
Bean Sprouts
Alfalfa Sprouts
Yellow onions
Shallots
Garlic
Green peas, fresh or frozen
Snow peas
Carrots
Beets
Avocado

Grapefruit (red)
Oranges (madarins are my fave)
Bananas
Assorted Berries (in season)
Pineapple
Kiwi
Mango
Cantaloupe
Honeydew Melon
Grapes (seedless)
Apples (granny smith and Macs)
Cherries (in season)
Pomegranates
Pears
Dark plums
Peaches
Nectaries

Nuts for snacking and to use in recipes:

Walnuts (whole)
Pecans (whole)
Hazelnuts (whole)
Unsalted cashews

Pantry Staples:
Canned tuna
Lentils
Chickpeas
Tahini
Navy/canelli beans
Dried split peas
Kidney beans
Barley
Whole wheat couscous
Basmati rice
Brown rice
Whole wheat pastas
Whole wheat/grain breads
Whole wheat pita bread
Bran flakes
Scottish oatmeal (I think it is the similar to steel cut oats)
Canned tomatoes & paste
Vegetarian soup stock base
Whole wheat all purpose flour
Whole wheat bread flour
Yeast
Powdered milk(for bread machine)
Raisins
Dried Apricots
Dates
Semi-sweet chocolate chips
Olive oil
Assorted vinegars (Red Wine, White Wine, Balsamic)
Light Soya sauce
Low sodium teriaki sauce
Chinese oyster sauce

Must have spices:
Nutmeg
Allspice
Cinnamon
Cloves
Bouquet Garni
Madras curry powder
Garam Masala (Indian Spice blend)
Chinese Five Spice Blend
Tumeric
Fennel
Cumin
Mustard seeds
Lemon pepper
Rosemary,Thyme, ect.
Garlic powder
Hot chili paste
Chili powder
Smoked Paprika
Dried chilis
Various hot sauces
Black peppercorns and peppermill
Coarse sea salt and salt mill
Honey

Dairy etc.:
2% milk
1/2 &1/2 cream
yogurt
strong flavoured cheeses
butter

Meat:
Turkey bacon (occasionally)
Organic beef
Organic poultry
Salmon
Fish sticks for hubby (only way he will eat fish )
Frozen Shrimp
Eggs - free range, grain fed

* Note we haven't been buying meat lately as we are eating more vegetarian meals now.

Other:
Spanish peanuts
Peanuts in the shell
Tostitos
Salsa (we make our own sometimes)
Popcorn for air popping
Popcorn spices
Sunflower seeds
Organic dark chocolate
Granola bars
Jello mix
Pudding mix
The occasional tin of rice pudding
Natural peanut butter from the health food store
Pure fruit jams or homemade preserves
Wheat crackers
Good coffee
Decaf & herbal teas
Crystal Light
Bottled flavoured water
Birds' custard mix
Club Soda
Rose's Lime Cordial

In the summer I have an herb garden and in the winter I plant herbs in pots on the kitchen windowsill.

My favorites:
Dill
Basil
Flat Leaf Parsley
Chives
Cilantro
Mint
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Old 07-19-2006, 01:58 PM   #13
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My favorite cooking appliances:

Vegetable/rice steamer
Food Processor/blender
Mini-chopper
Stove top Wok
Breadmaker
Corningware casserole dishes
Crockpot (circa 1970's handed down by my auntie )
George Forman grill
Air popcorn maker
Good quality chef's knife
Freezer bag machine

Anyone else have items they love?
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The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over
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Old 07-19-2006, 02:08 PM   #14
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Wow Mauv, I don't think I could list everything I eat, that is a pretty good list.

I have a rice cooker and I use a stovetop pan for steaming. I also use a crockpot. I have a foreman grill I use occassionally. I also have to say I love knives. I use my bamboo cutting boards every day.

I've also been thinking about eating less meat and eating other sources of proteins. My only issue is I don't know how to do it healthfully so I have to do a little research.

I forgot to add that I've been using a meal type shake in the morning called "ultimate meal" (www.ultimatelife.com). Even though I kind of think it tastes like nothing, my BF thinks it tastes like lima beans. Basically it has a balance of carbs, protein, fiber and healthy fats. I mostly enjoy eating it because it is full of nutrients and good stuff.

I also eat 1% cottage cheese as one of my protein sources.
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Old 07-19-2006, 02:21 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nelie
I've also been thinking about eating less meat and eating other sources of proteins. My only issue is I don't know how to do it healthfully so I have to do a little research.
Using vegetables sources as protein can be a little tricky, since vegetable protein rarely is a "complete" protein - providing all the necessary amino acids.

(snipped from a website)

Dietary proteins are categorized into two groups: complete proteins, and incomplete proteins. Complete proteins contain all the essential amino acids, whereas incomplete proteins contain only some of the essential amino acids. Food that contains complete protein are meat, eggs, dairy, and soy products (e.g. tofu).

Proteins are made from amino acids. Our body is able to synthesize some amino acids, but there are certain amino acids that our body cannot synthesize so we must consume them in our diet. These amino acids, termed "essential" amino acids, can be taken from eating a variety of vegetables or from tofu. Animal foods such as meat, dairy, eggs, poultry, and fish are complete proteins because they contain sufficient levels of all essential amino acids.

Food that has incomplete protein are most vegetables, grains, and legumes.
Plant proteins tend to be limited in one or more essential amino acids. For example, beans are low in the amino acid lysine, while rice is rich in lysine (quinoa is a good example of a vegetable protein that is "complete").

Vegetarians must eat protein foods that have complementary amino acid levels so that the essential amino acids missing from one protein food can be supplied by another. It was once believed that complementary proteins had to be consumed at every meal. We now know that intentional combining at each meal is not necessary.

As long as you eat a variety of plant foods, such as brown rice, corn, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and wheat within each 24 hour period, your protein needs should easily be met.

Here's a little vegetarian protein chart for you to look at:

http://www.vegparadise.com/protein.html#Charts
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SIX YEARS at maintenance weight!

My very long weight loss story

"I saw an angel in the marble and I chiseled until I set it free."
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