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Is anybody else having problems creating meals for this diet?

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Old 11-19-2009, 07:25 PM   #1
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Default Is anybody else having problems creating meals for this diet?

I just started this diet on 11/15. I have been in the kitchen more these past 5 days than I have the last 30 some odd years of my life! I spend all day thinking about this program—what to eat, how much water I should drink, and how much exercise I should do. It is nerve wracking. For one I am a bad organizer and have been struggling to get myself organized with this new way of life.

Does anyone have suggestions on how to create a quick and easy meal plan to follow for the diet? I sift through MRC recipes all day and night trying to find something tasty (which usually isn’t) and easy. The only meal I have down pat is breakfast. I wish all the meals could be that way. Right now I am my biggest obstacle. I’m a mountain and would prefer to be a mole hill. Within a 3 day period I lost 5 lbs. I really, really want to succeed.
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Old 11-19-2009, 07:45 PM   #2
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I have been having the same problem lately...and I have just forced myself to get organized! On Saturdays I cut up, prepare, weigh and store my veggies for the week. Then I can just grab them out of the fridge and go. I have been eating a "no salt added" canned chicken and a low sodium tuna in salads or in casseroles for lunch and dinner sometimes to break up the grilled chicken breast I seemed to eat constantly in the beginning. There is a recipe thread on this site that is really helpful, maybe you have already checked it out. Sorry to ramble, but I am new to the site and it is great to talk to people who are going through the same things as I am!
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Old 11-19-2009, 08:39 PM   #3
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Thanks MrsBenson. I thought it was just me having the problem or that I was making it harder than it needed to be.

I've seen the recipes in the MRC cookbook and this forum and I am still having issues. To be fair I haven't made it completly through the cookbook, so I am slowly working on that.

As for the cooking in advance I am going to try to do that with my meats and try to freeze them or refrigerate them until needed. (I'm not a cook but I will check with my mom for which is better.

I didn't know you could use canned meats. I will have to ask about that tomorrow. I've been using fresh and it has been quite costly. I spoke with one the advisors, as I was discouraged about the seasonings. It's not that I have to have salt but it makes the difference as I am trying to choke down 6 oz of meat and 4 oz of veggies at 2 different meals. I brought in some salt alternative called "No Salt" and asked if I could use it. She read the label and said sure since it's sodium free.

Plus I've also found if you include the chicken boullion while you bake turkey or chicken--it makes all the difference and helps the taste. Also if you can eat fish on your plan, I read on the forum tilapia is a good light fish to eat. I tried it and it will easily be a staple. I also found it is so much easier to eat 4 oz cooked veggies as opposed to 8 oz raw.

You think you are rambling HA did you read this stuff I just typed?!!!!!!!!!!!

Seriously you are not rambling and I agree with you--it is easier going through this and know someone else is in the same boat. I read about everyone's hurdles and successes and feel encouraged.

Harlow
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Old 11-19-2009, 08:43 PM   #4
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I'm not on your program but I have had the exact same problem with menu planning and it was probably my biggest hurdle to jump. Like you, breakfast was relatively easy to figure out but the other two meals, I just couldn't get a handle on. This is what I have finally figured out. I suspect the basics work, no matter what plan you are on.

Make a list of all the meals you already know you like-the recipes probably tell you how many servings you will get out of each one. Then take your calendar and decide where you are going to put those based on how long you know they are going to make, how much they make etc. Then pick one or two new things to try each week that look interesting to you. As you find new stuff you really love, add it to your list. If you want something a little more concrete feel free to read my blog. I've written out my whole "base list" so you get the idea if you need to see how I do that. It will at least give you some ideas about how to do this. This has finally cracked this mystery for me. Hope that's helpful.
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Old 11-19-2009, 09:36 PM   #5
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I make up my meat servings in advance. When I make meatballs, I make 2 or 3 pounds up and shape them on a cookie sheet and freeze them. I store them in the freezer in a ziploc bag and take out however many I need for a meal. Its trial and error at first figuring out how many raw make 4 or 6 oz cooked, so weigh them before you cook them and then weigh after cooking the first time to see how many you need to cook for yourself.

I also buy chicken breasts in the family size packages and clean them better and freeze them on a cookie sheet and then put them in a ziploc bag. again, figure out how many oz raw equals 4 or 6 oz cooked and trim the breasts so each one is the correct size. I also cut up the tenderloins and cut off pieces so I have a bag of cut up chicken. Some people even cook up batches of their chicken with different flavorings / herbs and then freeze the cooked pieces. easier to pull out the correct amount, thaw, heat and eat.

Talipia, haddock, halibut, other white fish I dip in olive oil and lay flat on the cookie sheet and freeze before putting in ziploc bags. With fish, I usually weigh my portion after cooking and my husband gets his piece and any extra from mine. Use lemon or lime juice, green onions, garlic, herbs as you decrease the salt and eventually you will not need so much.

It does take a lot of time and effort thinking about and preparing our food on this program but that is part of the learning how so we don't have to diet again. Good luck and bon appetit as Julia would say! jeanette
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Old 11-19-2009, 09:55 PM   #6
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Thank you Petra65 and reuse lady. Those are all really good suggestions. I will get to work on that too. I'll post in a week to let you know how that's working for me.

Thanks ladies!

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Old 11-19-2009, 10:55 PM   #7
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I have "go to" veggies and fruit that I eat when I don't have time or the imagination to prepare anything different. I love frozen green beans- especially the ones that come in the steam bags- 6 min in the micro and you're good to go. I find it's easier for me to eat cooked veggies.

I am addicted to apple chips- apples sliced really thin and cooked @ 250 for 1 1/2 hours (recipe from the recipe board).

Cottage cheese is always great for your protein and it's easy. I like to combine it with fruit or veggies. I also found some individual frozen tilapia. It takes 15 min to defrost and 10 min to cook. Ground turkey with garlic powder baked in a muffin tin makes them small like little meatballs- good with tomatoes and spaghetti squash (which I heard you can cook in the microwave but I've never tried it)

Good luck!
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Old 11-24-2009, 06:45 PM   #8
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Thanks to everybody who offered suggestions. I am working on it. NotafatBride, good suggestion regarding apple chips I will have to give that a try as well.

I have noticed that the ICBINB spray on Tilapia with crushed melba coating is really good. ICBINB is becoming my best friend.

Now if I could just think of what to do with this tomato basil supplement. I tried to use it today and looked at the strawberry color, took a whiff of it and started to become ill.
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Old 11-25-2009, 02:52 PM   #9
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Harlow,
I don't use the cookbook because most recipes have HNS in them and that adds to the cost of this program.
I buy frozen veggies and pop them in the microwave. Kroger's have them on sale often for $.88 and I can usually get 3 servings out of one bag.
Ground turkey is quick and easy to make because it is like frying a hamburger only I spray the pan with Pam and use a little EVOO. Plus 4oz of ground turkey fills me up more than 2 oz of cheese.
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Old 11-27-2009, 07:50 PM   #10
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Thank you iluvindiana.

I have made frozen veggie my quick go to. Any suggestions for what you do when you have veggies that don't make the 4 oz mark? Do you refrigerate or freeze and make mixed veggies or put them in a soup?
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Old 11-27-2009, 10:40 PM   #11
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The individually wrapped tilapia fillets defrost even quicker in a warm water bath. Like 5 minutes. They're my "I'm starving" protein of choice for dinner.

I do the opposite of most of you. I almost always eat 8oz of raw veggies rather than 4oz of cooked because I LOVE veggies and get much fuller from the raw.

With extra cooked veggies, i throw them in the fridge and add to them later for the next meal. I don't do any soups or anything because I'm not nearly that creative

You can use several seasonings to get over the need for salt. I am to the point where i have to order food from restraunts with no salt because they are too salty. I use fresh herbs like cilantro or dill in my salads...I use cumin in ground turkey to cook it up for a taco or taco salad... You can also use any of the Mrs. Dash or other no salt added blends from the store. They're quick easy fixes for chicken. I can't personally use Mrs. Dash because they all have cayenne in them and I can't eat that. I use the McCormick brand. I also like McCormick's Allspice. I use that alot. It has kind of a smoky sweet flavor. Its kinda pricy, but a little goes a long way.

Hope you're working out your menu woes
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Old 11-27-2009, 11:35 PM   #12
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More great ideas! Thank you so much Hvnlymzic!

Everyone has so many great ideas. My menu woes are slowly, like a turtle's crawl coming together. I am very much the type of person who is slow to get it together. It'll be the end of the program before I get a seriously good handle on it all. : )

I look at what I have eaten for lunch and shake my head. An apple, cottage cheese, and cooked green beans. Not very appetizing but it appears to get the job done. I was down 11.5 on Wed., then today weighed in and gained a pound. I stayed OP and Lord knows I drink 13-15 glasses of water daily. The advisor seems to think I am may be stressed which creates lactic acid and could cause the weight gain.

Regardless the good news is the clinic said the weight I lost was total fat and all my lean tissue remains in tact. My BMI went down too. So I am cheering up a little.

Thanks for some more handy advice.
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Old 11-28-2009, 10:04 AM   #13
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Harlow...if you're eating alot of apples that can slow you down a little bit too. Apples have more carbs than most of the fruit we're allowed. I try to do apples on 1-2x per week. Citrus and berries are the best options. Just a little piece of advice I wish I'd learned earlier.
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Old 11-29-2009, 05:13 PM   #14
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Thank you Hvnlymzic. I didn't know that about the apples. I was eating them at least 3-4 times a week. Since reading your post I have already made the switch. I am trying to lose as much weight, correctly the first time. I appreciate you sharing this info with me.
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Old 11-30-2009, 04:16 PM   #15
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I have been eating an apple a day. No one at my center has mentioned that eating apples every day is not a good thing. Again I am so glad for this forum.
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