Maple Turkey Sausage Patties(LC/DF/GF/SF)

Afternoon all, trust everyone has recouped from the after effects of watching the solar eclipse yesterday. I know a lot of folks were complaining of having headaches, eyes were burning, and feeling tired. If you’re still not feeling well I pray for speedy recovery soon, I know how draining those types of headaches can be. 

Yesterday I spent some time, post solar eclipse, making some breakfast meat for myself. I love maple flavored sausage, especially with extra maple syrup drizzled on top…mmmmm, the best! But carb wise it’s like the plague attacking my body, which is why I haven’t had that in quite awhile. I do miss regular sausage though…and bacon, deli ham, spam, kielbasa…😑I’ll stop. (Le sigh)


Most of what’s available in stores I can’t even trust. There are hidden sugars, preservatives, and msg in almost everything. I’m not being as strict with my anti-candida lifestyle as some folks have suggested. I still eat meat whereas others tend to become vegetarian. Nothing wrong with that at all, I personally cannot go without meat, which is why I think such things ought to be tailored for each person. There is no clear cut and dry protocol that will work for everyone. I’ve learned a lot in the last few weeks about the various candida protocols and have taken from each one customizing what I think will work best for me. So far, everything that I’ve been doing is helping and most of the die off on my chest has cleared up. PTL!! Since I have to resort to making my own breakfast meats, desserts, and meals, it does take a little extra time and effort, but the end results are worth it! 

I do want to mention that the maple flavoring is optional, I only added it because I personally LOVE it. 😍😉 However, you can use maple syrup if the carbs are not an issue for you. Ground chicken can also be used in lieu of ground turkey. Or you can mix ground turkey with ground hamburger, which I’ve done in the past when making meatballs. It’s just as good and the ground beef lends some fat to the mixture since ground turkey tends to be lean. 

What you’ll need: 

1 pound ground turkey

2 tsp poultry seasoning

2 tsp maple extract(optional)

1 tblsp granulated stevia(optional)

1/8 tsp marjoram

1/2 tsp black pepper

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp Cassia cinnamon(purchased from The Spice House)

1/8 tsp red pepper flakes

1 tsp Himalyan pink salt

Coconut oil, for cooking

Heat oven to 375*F, line sheet pan with parchment paper and set aside. In a medium size bowl mix all the ingredients by hand thoroughly. There are a few methods with which you can make sausage patties. METHOD 1: on a clean work surface place a piece of wax paper down and add half of the meat mixture on it. Cover with another sheet of wax paper, then use a rolling pin to flatten out to desired thickness. Cut into 8 rectangular pieces and repeat with second half of mixture. METHOD 2: skip the wax paper all together and free form patties by hand. METHOD 3: on clean work surface lay down wax paper, place half of the meat mixture down and flatten out with hands to desired thickness. Use a biscuit cutter cut to shape the patties. Repeat with second half of the meat mixture. Cook in coconut oil over medium heat until browned on both sides. 

You can freeze these raw or cooked, I went ahead and cooked all of mine up to help cut down on my time in the kitchen each morning. I used wax paper to keep the patties separated and put them into a quart size freezer bag. 

Depending on the size and how thick or thin you make the patties will determine how many it yields. I was able to get 16 rectangular patties. The carb count for these is basically non existent. Using maple syrup would change that, so keep that in mind. If you decide to make these with maple syrup just remember to omit the granulated stevia. 

I had three this morning with a couple of egg muffins that I made, such a nice carb free meal! 

(Pictured above: Half of the egg muffins are dairy and meat free for me. The other half have ham, pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese which are G-Man’s fave!) A simple and easy low carb breakfast that you can customize with any flavor and add ins. These were really fluffy, the almod milk added a nice light texture to these. I used cajun seasoning, turmeric powder, kosher salt, dried oregano, and dried parsley. Gave a good whisking and portioned it out to all the silicone muffin cups. Baked @375*F for 20 minutes, plan to make more to freeze. I love breakfasts that I can grab and warm up. Makes for a hassel free morning. 

Hope you give these sausage patties a try, play around with the seasonings and let me know what you think. I love getting feedback from you all! If you have any questions please email me at nightowlkitchen@yahoo.com. You can also follow me on Instagram: @nok_amandagayle, for more recipe ideas/inspirations. 

Have a blessed week! 

My Life with Candida Albicans(Here I Go Again)

Afternoon everyone, hope your Wednesday has been a blessed one so far. Today I want to share an update on my candida detox, plus an article I just found that explains what foods to eliminate when you suspect you have a candida overgrowth, and a recipe that I made a couple of nights ago that was absolutely delicious and dairy free! So this will be a jam packed post, but bear with me! ☺️ Below is a picture that is NOT the most flattering, but it shows just how bad this mess has gotten. 

Picture from Sunday night. It spans from shoulder to shoulder, the worst of it in the center. It’s still creeping slowly up my neck, but for now it’s not as bad as it was last Wednesday. As of today, it only itches around the edges of the rash site. There is a soap I found that I plan to try, it’s designed for these areas so I’ll share more after I give it a go. 

For a while now I have been dealing with this candida overgrowth and die off. Ever since my first die off from a few years ago I have done just enough to get over the worst of the symptoms and once the die off would clear up I would slowly begin to add certain foods back into my low carb diet. I can already hear the clucking of tongues from certain folks 😉, trust me I have been kicking myself since last week for not having realized sooner how detrimental that decision was to my health. Just like low carb/keto is more than a diet, it’s a lifestyle, so is eat to keep your candida in check. And yes, EVERYONE has candida in their bodies. It’s a nasty bacteria in your digestive system and when we aren’t eating right, when we are pumping our bodies full of antibiotics(including the animal meats we eat) we are feeding the candida. That’s when things get out of balance and we start having issues with our sinuses, allergies, skin related problems(ie rashes, eczema), flatulence, brain fog, IBS, fibromyalgia, yeast infections, and so on. It just seems to snowball and we can’t figure out why all of the sudden we are having all these issues. 
That’s been my life now since 2011 and quite possibly longer if I think about it. This could explain my most recent issue with the top of my left foot. It was hurting to the point where I could barely walk. Which that has actually started to improve over the last few days! I’m not hobbling around as much and I can stand for short periods of time with minimal issues. This is great news since this means I will be able to get back to my workouts! 

So what is it EXACTLY am I doing to improve my health? What protocol am I following to eliminate the candida overgrowth? It’s not any one thing or method. I spent last weekend reading anything and everything online, refreshing my memory of what needs to be done. The first thing I did was change my diet. Since I am already living a lower carb life, I knew I was going to have to give up more even MORE foods that may have been contributing to the overgrowth. And Saturday night proved to be a near breaking point for me. I was emotionally drained and frustrated by the realization that I would have to give up a lot of my favorite low carb foods for a while(possibly forever) and it all hit me that night. I was hungry and wanting stuffed green olives. My go to snack food when I have the munchies. High in fat, zero carbs, and I can easily eat half a jar! No judging. 😒My 13 yr old comes in and asks me what I’m doing. Trying to keep the shreds of emotions in check I tell him I’m hungry and can’t have the things that I would normally go to. At this point I could feels the tears welling up and I absolutely hate crying in front of people. When I cry it’s messy and ugly, so I took a few breaths to calm myself and without skipping a beat G-Man told me “so fix yourself some eggs.” 

I won’t lie, I scoffed at that idea. For one eggs don’t like me. Honestly, they make me sulfur gassy(and there goes any hope for finding a future husband). Before I could stop him, G-Man was already grabbing the container of eggs and asking me what meats and veggies I can have. He was shocked when I told him I can’t have sausage patties, deli ham or turkey, and no more bacon. Pitiful, I know. 😔 So he grabbed tomatoes(which aren’t EXACTLY a safe thing but it added color to my dish), frozen green beans, and a green onion. He stood there watching me fry a couple of eggs in coconut oil with a handful of green beans, added in a few tomatoes for color, seasoned it all with Himalayan seas salt, black pepper, and turmeric. Garnishing the top with thin slices of green onion. And that was dinner! It was so satisfying, delicious, and simple! 

I know not too many folks like to give God credit these days, but I have to take a moment to. If my son hadn’t come into the kitchen when he did I wouldn’t have eaten such an amazing meal. I would have eaten half a jar of stuffed green olives, maybe some cheese slices, and hated myself later. God intervened by using my son to ground me (meaning forcing me to focus) and get me thinking what I should do instead and kept me from eating the very things that have led to this overgrowth and further the issue more. 

Sunday was even better! I had to make the decision to stay home from church since I was experiencing some IBS issues(again I’m just killing my prospects here lol) and didn’t want to chance anything. I rarely eat breakfast y’all, I take after my Memaw, leave me alone for an hour after I get up and let me enjoy my morning coffee(only for her it was hot tea). Coffee fills me up but I made half a cup instead and fried up two eggs just so I could get something into my system. Lunch came and I was starving! That’s when I made this…


All right, it’s not the prettiest bowl of food, but it was tasy! Stir fry veggies and garlic ginger chicken, it made four servings so I had enough for dinner and some to freeze! Sunday afternoon my detox pills arrived and I was actually excited! Me, I hate swallowing pills, but I was actually excited about having THOSE! I know, crazy. 😏 With my biggest meal I take my pills every day and haven’t had too many issues with them(mild burping…I’m batting a thousand already who cares anymore?!). And this is what is helping me to combat the candida overgrowth. I still pine for the foods that I used to eat, but I know in the end it’s better that I go without and finally get well after years of neglect. 

So…

Goodbye to : dairy(heavy cream, butter, cheeses, cream cheese), processed meats(kielbasa, spam, hot dogs, bacon, pepperoni, deli meats), mushrooms, peanut oil, mini sweet peppers, fathead pizza dough and bagels, creamy/cheesy casseroles, homemade ranch dressing, ketchup, mayonnaise, low carb brownies(because of the chocolate and butter), pork rinds, low carb protein smoothies(because the protein powder I love has whey in it), mashed cauliflower(I tend to make it with cream cheese, parm cheese, and heavy cream), pickled foods(sliced jalapenos, dill pickles, stuffed green olives), naturally sweet veggies and fruit, and the list goes on. 

Say hello to: dark green veggies(kale, broccoli, chard, romaine), cruciferous veggies(cauliflower, cabbage), organic meats(beef, chicken, and pork…not a fish fan), peppers, fermented foods(soy sauce, sauerkrauts, kimchi), squash, zucchini, green beans, onions, garlic, coconut oil, evoo, safflower oil, avocado oil(and avocados), hemp seeds, chia seeds, almonds, eggplant, blueberries, unsweetened cranberries, stevia, xylitol, vitamins and supplements, and candida detox pills(two pills once a day). 

Here’s a link to a site I found today that gives a basic outline of what foods to avoid and what foods are safe when killing off the candida. CLICK HERE

A friend recently asked me how my ice cube diet is going. 😏 I love her cheekiness! If it were anyone else I wouldn’t have laughed. For the most part I am able to maintain my low carb lifestyle while incorporating more of the anti-candida regimen. I don’t feel as bloated, the gas is slowly going away, mental clarity is emerging, I’m not as tired during the afternoon, but I am still battling with cold extremities, that might take a bit longer to get over since I’ve dealt with it for years. Plus I actually dropped a pound over the weekend which I haven’t been able to do for a while! 

Now, what yummy recipe do I have for you?! 


It’s baked chicken legs(you can use breasts, thighs, wings, or the whole chicken, go nuts!!) with oven roasted broccoli and cauliflower, served over a very basic romain salad topped with spicy brown mustard. 

What you’ll need:

12 chicken legs, skin on

No salt added seasoning of your choice(the one I used is pictured below)

Evoo

2 pounds frozen broccoli

1 pound frozen cauliflower

Pink Himalayan Sea Salt

Directions:

Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Line two sheet pans with non stick foil. Coat the chicken legs evenly with salt free seasoning and place on sheet pan. Bake for 40 minutes uncovered. Crank the heat up to 425 degrees and bake for another 30 minutes. 

In a large mixing add frozen broccoli and cauliflower. Drizzle on evoo and season with pink Himalayan sea salt. Spread out on remaining sheet pan and bake for 30 minutes or until it reaches a desired doneness. 

Serve with chopped organic romaine lettuce and use your favorite dressing. It’s simple, it’s easy, and leftovers are great the next day for breakfast with a couple of fried eggs. Leftovers can be frozen or used for those Bento boxes. Just make sure to debone the chicken first before storing. Makes it easier to enjoy later on! 

Below is the no salt added seasoning recipe I used. 


I store mine in a regular mouth glass jar and washed off a screw on lid from a Kraft Parmesan cheese container. This way I can shake on the seasoning on one side or measure it out from the other. I can’t remember if I doubled or tripled the recipe at the time I made this, but it is worth it! I use it on my eggs, veggies, beef, pork, and of course chicken. 

You can make a non-spicy version by leaving out the cayenne pepper. I think the next batch I make I’ll add turmeric and ginger powder since both of those are amazing anti-candida seasonings. 


If you have any questions please feel free to ask me below or email me at nightowlkitchen@yahoo.com, don’t forget to follow me on Instagram(@nok_amandagayle). I tend to post a little more frequently on IG these days since it’s quicker. But I hope this post has helped to shed some light on this growing issue. If you suspect you are suffering from a candida overgrowth, here is a link with a list of symptoms. CLICK HERE. This is definitely something you DO NOT want to leave untreated. I will be honest with you, there is a lot of controversial information out there, please be careful with your research and take a majority of it with a massive grain of salt. What works for one person won’t always work for another, there is no one size fits all protocol. There’s a basic outline that we all have to follow, but how I am approaching treatment is not necessarily going to work for the next person. 

In the meantime, take care, happy healthy eating, and hope you all have a blessed week! 

Health Update and Recipe

Since the new year began, I’ve had some highs and lows. Who doesn’t, right?! The lows have been outweighing the highs lately and so much so it had started to take its toll on me. What I am about to share may gross some folks out, so if you’d rather skip to the recipe below that’s quite all right. 

A year ago I discovered a massive bruise on the side of my right breast. It was the strangest thing, I remember going to bed without it and the next morning it was there! It never hurt though from it’s black-purple color you’d think otherwise. After a few weeks it finally went away and I never gave it another thought as 2015 pressed on. Fast forward to February 2016…I’m used to funky things happening to me thanks to my PCOS. Honestly, most things never surprise me or gross me out anymore. I’ve learned to deal and move on, except when I woke up one morning with dried blood around my right nipple. You bet I thought what the heck! After a mild freak out I hit Bing search engine up for a possible explanation. 

Now, I know what many of you are thinking, why haven’t you gotten your fanny to a doctor?! Well, a little thing called insurance…yeah, I don’t have it and not enough money to pay out of pocket at the moment. So, after spending an hour perusing the possibilities as to what it could be I decided to wait it out and see if could be the first option: hormone imbalance. For some women it can occur during their monthly cycles, I personally have never had that particular symptom happen before. I decided to give it four days to see if would go away on it’s own as per many online GYN’s  had said it should…but it didn’t. I won’t lie, I did panic at first and my mind began to reel with the possibility of ‘what if’. What if it’s not just a clogged milk duct? What if this isn’t just a serious bout of hormone imbalance? What if I have breast cancer? That last thought scared me the most. 

After talking with my parents, I came up with a plan to see if I could in some way alter certain symptoms. I have always shared on social media how cancer needs sugar and an acidic environment to thrive. Now it was time to start putting my own words to good use, live a low carb lifestyle and incorporate alkaline aspects(water, certain veggies, etc.). I knew it wasn’t going to be easy going cold turkey off of sugar, gluten, and dairy but with the idea of breast cancer hanging over my head as a major possibility I knew that once I start there would be no going back. No giving up. No starting and two weeks later giving up. It’s serious this time, and even IF it’s not breast cancer I ought to live as though it were. 

So, for two weeks I have been living an extreme low carb lifestyle. No sugar. No gluten. No dairy. Increased my water to 2L a day, every morning I drink a small cup of warm lemon water sweetened with stevia. Cut my caffeine consumption back to half a cup a day. Increased my usage of turmeric, ginger, and cayenne pepper. I add it on EVERYTHING throughout the day. Yes I was a total grumpy mcbaggy pants last week, an absolute bear because all week I was craving doughnuts. I didn’t care what kind homemade, Krispy Kreme, Dunkin…If someone had brought in a dozen I would have eaten the entire box! But I didn’t cave in, I stayed the course and munched on pork rinds any time the craving hit. It helped! My chronic fatigue is improving, I still get tired during the day but I’m not crashing on the sofa every afternoon like I had been. Slowly things are beginning to improve which is good! 

Even this morning I weighed myself and found that I’m 9 pounds down and the inflammation is lessening. Here’s a little tidbit of info for women with PCOS, dairy causes inflammation seriously consider reducing or cutting it out completely and notice an improvement to your overall health. I am starting to get around with better ease, my joints ache less, my lower back doesn’t hurt as much, and walking in general isn’t as tiresome. Turmeric and cayenne pepper have helped tremendously! I strongly suggest you start adding that to your daily diet and lifestyle. 

I’ll just tell you this, only time will reveal if what I am doing is truly improving my health and putting a stop to these weird symptoms. All I ask from you amazing people is to please pray for me during this time. 

Now, if I haven’t grossed everyone out with my health update, let’s move on to a fabulous lunch idea that’s full of good for you fat, will tackle inflammation, and is perfect for a ladies get together or brunch! 😉

  

You’ll need::

6 boiled eggs, peeled and mashed

2 leftover chicken breasts, boneless, skinless

1 c homemade mayonnaise

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tsp dried chives

1 avocado, peeled

Spanish Paprika

Cayenne powder

In a large bowl add peeled boiled eggs and use a pastry blender to chop it down as finely as you can. Set aside. Place leftover chicken breasts in a food processor and whiz it down until it resembles a fine texture, almost like a dry pate. Add to the chopped eggs. Mix with mayonnaise, salt, pepper, and dried chives. Cut a ripe avocado in half and carefully remove the seed with a sharp knife. You can leav the skin on if you wish, I prefer removing it. Fill each half with the egg chicken salad mixture, don’t be stingy! Sprinkle the top with cayenne pepper and paprika and enjoy! 

This is truly a deviled dish! That kick of cayenne is amazing with the smoky flavor of paprika. You can serve this with a side salad, gluten free low carb bread and almond butter, add chopped bacon on top, and of course a tall glass of lemon lime water! 

The carb count is low which is great for induction. You can use any leftover chicken, I just happen to have two pieces leftover from a low carb chicken paprikash that I made earlier in the week. Don’t be afraid to try new things and hope you all have a blessed weekend! 

Felt Like A Chef Tonight!

It’s not too often that I cook something that is not only amazing but is crazy easy! But tonight was different, I felt like an chef in the kitchen. I knew I wanted to eat lemon pepper chicken for dinner but what kind I wasn’t sure. So, I did a web search for pan searing and baking in the oven…just that. After reading up on the HOW I got busy applying what I had skimmed over–yes you read that right, skimmed! LOL!

image1(3)

Pan Seared/Oven Baked Lemon Pepper and Garlic Chicken

Serves 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Bake Time: 25

2 Tblsp raw organic coconut oil
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thawed
lemon pepper seasoning
garlic powder
pinch of kosher salt
1/2 cup broccoli florets
2 mini sweet yellow peppers, thinly sliced
1/8 cup chopped onion
Healthy pinch dried parsley

Set oven temp to 350*F. Heat up an oven safe pan, I used a heavy copper bottom skillet. Begin heating it up over medium high heat.
Pat chicken dry and rub lemon pepper, garlic powder and salt on both sides of the chicken. Add coconut oil to the skillet and as soon as it’s melted(which doesn’t take very long) add the chicken. Sear for 3 minutes on each side, add in chopped onions, broccoli florets, and thinly sliced mini yellow peppers. Place the pan in the middle of the oven and bake for 25 minutes.
Before serving double check doneness and enjoy!

You can use lemon zest, lemon juice and black pepper for a fresh lemon pepper flavor. Feel free to add whole crushed garlic, and any vegetable combination you like!

According to MyFitnessPal, the nutritional info is as follows:

Calories: 440 kcal
Carbs: 7 g
Fat: 5 g
Protein: 2 g
Sodium: 18 mg
Sugars: 3 g

You can use any oil you like to reduce the fat and calories. I can’t use another except coconut oil at the moment. I am a fan of palm oil, but I’m waiting to get myself some. It’s a crazy easy dish and yet so flavorful! My first bite had my eyes bugging out of my head 😛  Play with the flavors and just have fun!

Have blessed day!!

~Health Check Tuesday Celebration~

How can we not celebrate health this week?! Even if it’s just one good thing you’re doing today, be proud of that! It’s one thing that will help improve your life. Even if it’s just getting 6–8 glasses of water a day, opting for a salad instead of burger at lunch or dinner, or even taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Be proud of yourself 🙂

Health Check Tuesday came about as something that I wanted to initially use to bring awareness about PCOS to the masses. But over the last few weeks it’s morphed into sharing some of my weight loss triumphs and set backs, while encouraging everyone to continue on in their journey, which I love! No matter where we are in our health journeys we’re all heading toward the same goal::to become a better version of ourselves. We’re all striving to make changes that work for us and here on NOK Blog it’s important to emphasize good habits over any particular lifestyle, while also sharing the benefits I have personally received from living lower carb/alkaline. One of the things that PCOS women tend to struggle with is finding what works best for them. The temptation to find an easier solution is so great, especially when you’ve tried it all! I know, I’ve done most of it! I grew up on the food pyramid and ballooned. As a young adult I went to the more obscure and dangerous things such as laxatives, weight loss patches, thermogenic drinks, pills, starving myself, and it was all for naught.

The key I was missing in unlocking that door to losing weight, in a safe and natural way, was to stop depriving myself and just eat healthy food. I absolutely cannot tolerate much carbs. If I so much as go over 30 grams a day I start to feel tired, sluggish, and the numbers on the scale go up. When I over indulge and find myself in a food coma the symptoms get worse.

One of my fears when I began writing this blog a year ago was that people would EXPECT yummy comfort food all the time and that’s what I strived for. My health certainly took a turn for the worse the more I tried sharing the things that I *thought* people wanted from me. The weight I had lost came back with a vengeance and then some. That miserable sick feeling started to come back and I knew I needed to change what I was doing, but again worried that it would hurt this blog and folks would start losing interest.

I felt that people wouldn’t be interested in reading about my lower carb alkaline lifestyle, people could care less about my need to be gluten free, and most certainly didn’t want to push a particular mindset on others. But I’ve watched how those posts about lower carb recipes have gained views and visits from people all over the world, local readers telling me how much they have enjoyed reading my Health Check Tuesday posts and how they have learned so much about PCOS. That they never knew it existed until they started reading about it here. Let me tell you what an amazing feeling that is, to know you have just empowered someone with knowledge and they are sharing it with others and are now meeting other women who are struggling with this same condition! It’s almost surreal 🙂

So, in honor of today I want to look back at a couple of my favorite Health Check posts and want to encourage you all to share these with your friends and loved ones. They are really posts that everyone can benefit from so don’t think that people you don’t know someone with PCOS that they too wouldn’t enjoy reading something on here.

  1. Healthy Check Tuesday: Positive ThinkingThis post is full of steps in thinking and living more positively. We’re all living busier and certainly more hectic lives now than our parents ever did! What’s changed? We need to examine our lives, determine what can be cut out and what should be changed in order to make our lives simpler and yes more positive. It’s amazing how I much enjoy life when the wifi isn’t so readily accessible. Technology seems to be my downfall, when I let that little ipod device rule my day with it’s constant dinging, pinging, and ringing…letting me know when someone has liked, shared, or messaged me. When the wifi is out I’m not constantly picking it up to check what’s going on. For me, a positive change has been cutting back on my ipod usage. It’s amazing just how less stressed I feel, how much drama I miss out on, and happier I feel! Could that be the same for you too?
  2. Health Check Tuesday: Memory Loss & PCOS–This piece was especially beneficial for me to write. I struggle a lot with remembering things. That was hard for me to admit since there are people who rely on me to remember certain things. When I forget I feel like I’ve just let the world down! I know that it’s impossible to actually do that, I’m just this speck on the map of the world, but still I hate that feeling that I’ve dropped the ball yet again. Sometimes it’s easy to disguise it when online, I can google or bing something real quick and go “oh yeah duh Amanda!” and go about my merry way with a conversation! But in person it’s a different story, even with a list of things I need to remember to do or ask someone I still find myself forgetting something along the way. At the end of the day I just remind myself, the world has not ended because I forgot, tomorrow is another day, and if it really mattered THAT much someone would have said something. In other words, don’t sweat it!

 

Today, I want to look at why bacon is the culprit in making so many PCOS women fat…but pasta is.

pasta photo     V.       bacon photo

18 years ago I would have argued how bacon was fattening, that pasta was healthier, and you would have found me with a plate of of my Mom’s spaghetti going to town like a mad woman. This is why I’m so thankful I learned a few years later just how wrong that mindset was for our family. The issue with carbs, specifically pasta/rice/potatoes/bread is that they raise the insulin levels dangerously and in turn that causes cells to pull in more fat which results in more weight gain.

But how is it then that bacon isn’t the culprit for weight gain?

 

2bc86090c5b968101f3f26383d5e09a6

I love these pictures, but still some might wonder where’s the evidence, I need the proof…give me more input!

To further break this down here’s a transcript from the smarter science of slim show that I stumbled upon not too long ago. It helps to explain this a bit better. The hosts of the show are Jonathan Bailor and Carrie Brown. I’ve started the quote after some back and forth chatter and picked up where Jonathan begins talking about the science of how fat isn’t the culprit of weight gain.

Jonathan: There is something that is really bad. It’s called ketoacidosis. That is a different thing, but as is common with things in the health world, if two words sound alike then people are like, oh well, ketoacidosis is horrible for you. Therefore, ketosis, which sounds like that word, must also be bad; it is not. They are two very, very different things.

So, ketosis – first of all, when you wake up in the morning you are in ketosis, because ketosis, very high level, just means your body is fueling itself using fat rather than sugar. That’s really all it means.

Carrie: How could anyone think that was bad?

Jonathan: Exactly. There is this mythology that your body requires carbohydrate. This is not an episode saying that we should all go on low carb diets; it’s also not an episode saying low carb diets are bad for you. They are absolutely not. In fact, they’re one of the most scientifically valid and studied ways of eating in the world.

But it is to say that this assumption that we have been told for the past forty years that 60-plus percent of our diet – excuse me, 65 percent plus of our diet should be carbohydrate because that’s the optimal fuel for our body is patently false. There is no such thing as an essential carbohydrate. There is such a thing as an essential amino acid, aka protein, and an essential fatty acid, aka fat. If you never ate a carbohydrate in your entire life, your body could fuel itself just fine via the process known as ketosis, aka burning fat as fuel. And it could also create all the glucose, aka sugar, it needs through a process that we talked about on the show “Gluconeogenesis” whereby protein is converted into sugar.

Carrie: So, we all want to be in ketosis then.

Jonathan: So, we want to be – it is absolutely critical that we give our body the ability to effectively fuel itself using fat. And that sounds obvious, but if our body is not good at using fat for fuel, keeping fat off our body is going to be extremely difficult. And this is why actually eating fat – we talk about it on the show a lot, how things that are intuitive aren’t always true. Right?

It’s intuitive that the earth is flat. Look outside; it looks flat. And if it wasn’t flat wouldn’t the people on the bottom fall off? We know there’s gravity; we know that’s not how the world works. And it’s intuitive that doesn’t eating fat make you fat? It is fat, you put it into your mouth and it just goes and sits on your hips, right? That is intuitive but it is wrong.

Here’s a better and a more scientifically accurate way to think about it. Okay? When you eat your body gets good at fueling itself based on what you eat. Makes sense, right?

Carrie: Right.

Jonathan: The more sugar you eat the better your body’s going to be at running off of sugar.
Because it’s like, this is the normal state for me, I better get used to this. Now think about how this works. If your body is best at burning sugar, meaning sugar is its preferred fuel source, for all intents and purposes your body does not store sugar. The only way to store energy on your body, practically – there is some level of glucose in your muscles and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah – but practically it’s in your fat. So, the way your body stores energy is through fat. But if you eat mostly sugar and your body is good at burning sugar, and prefers to burn sugar, then let’s say you eat breakfast and it’s a Pop Tart and orange juice, very common breakfast here in the States. Sugar, you basically had some sugar for breakfast. Well, in an hour your body has either burned through that sugar or more likely shuttled it off into your fat cells. So there is no sugar around, so your body needs energy. Well there’s no sugar around, so what’s it going to do? It’s going to make you hungry because the only way to get more sugar is to take some through your lips.

Carrie: Okay.

Jonathan: Now, think about if your body’s more accustomed to burning fat for fuel, and let’s say you have a delicious frittata with vegetables for breakfast.

Carrie: That was me today!

Jonathan: Exactly. Right? So you eat mostly fat. Most of your calories are coming from fat. You got some protein and you got some extremely healthy carbohydrate in the form of vegetables.

Carrie: Yum. It was delicious.

Jonathan: It’s delicious, so you get your calories, you get your nutrients, you get your energy and then when you – a few hours later, you’re sitting in the office or you’re sitting at the house, you’re sitting with your family and friends, and there’s no more energy floating around in the blood stream. Your body’s like, I need some more energy, and do you know what I like to use for energy? Fat. Oh hey. Good news; there’s some sitting right here on the hips. Or there’s some sitting right here maybe on the belly a little bit.

So the opposite of eating fat makes you fat; in fact, eating fat, helping your body to become conditioned at fueling itself off of fat, makes you better at burning fat. Because when you get into a state where you have a shortage of exogenous energy your body can just say, well, that’s okay, I don’t need to take any more fat through my lips. I can just eat it off my hips.

Carrie: The compelling reasons for not eating sugar just pile on and pile on. Don’t they?

Jonathan: Well, think about it, Carrie, it’s a, why is it?

Carrie: I can actually visualize what you just said happening in my mind, which is great, right? Because now every time I get that craving for sugar I’m going to go, nope, I don’t do that, because that’s going to help my body to think that sugar’s not the way to go and so I can visualize that; that’s super-helpful for me. Thank you, sir.

 

I absolutely loved his visuals! You condition your body to burn fat by eating fat. I know that isn’t going to sit well with most of you. Trust me, it took a lot of relearning for me to finally accept that after being told for years that bacon, olives, coconut, butter and yes eggs were all bad for me and I should eat those in extreme moderation. One of the first things I did after discovering a lower carb lifestyle was gorge myself on green stuffed olives! Oh yes, I think I ate half the jar in one sitting and I didn’t feel sick later on. In fact I felt pleasantly full for hours! Which was a new thing for me because I was having to eat every few hours and the weight was piling on like crazy! The first time I lost 50 pounds(I was 16 year old) people were beyond shocked when I told them how I was doing it. They were even floored when I told them that I was eating all these fatty foods and was losing weight hand over fist! So why didn’t I keep going? Life…I got thrown several fast curve balls and struck out one too many times. Wasn’t even allowed to walk the bases. When I finally was given the fourth chance to change my life I punted the ball and yes I’ve been running the bases ever since! (That’s the extent of my baseball knowledge, don’t go thinking I’m some fan…sorry, sports aren’t my thing lol)

I may not be dropping the weight like I did years ago when I first learned about this lifestyle, I’ve missed that golden opportunity, but at least I’m losing it. It’s going to take me longer this time to get to my goal weight(at least five years) but that’s ok too! The important thing is that I’m feeling better, I’m staying active, and there’s a little extra give in my clothes! How can anyone judge those results and say it’s all unhealthy?! That I’m doing something wrong and I need someone to take over my health for me? We’re not all cookie cutter here, therefore a cookie cutter lifestyle isn’t going to work for anyone. We have to figure out what works best for each of us and stick with it! Find new ways to spice it up, treat ourselves every once in a while(don’t call it cheating, that suggests it’s something bad, unhealthy, that should be kept a secret when it’s perfectly alright to have that special meal and stop when you’re full). Are carbs bad for everyone? No, but for the majority of Americans yes they are bad…toxic even. Should everyone jump back on the Atkins or South Beach diet wagon? Nope, in fact I don’t support either of those. They are both loaded with soy and not a healthy option for PCOS Cysters.

If you’re truly curious about what nutritional lifestyle you should be living I encourage you to take Dr. Joseph Mercola’s Nutritional Typing Test. I’ve taken it three times and get the same results. I’m a Protein Type, this is why a lower carb lifestyle works for me! All you have to do is enter your email address, he does not spam you nor will he sell your information to second or third parties. This is strictly to discover what nutritional plan you should be living. You are not obligated to buy anything, the test is free to take, all you have to provide is accurate information to get honest results.

My hearty thanks goes out to everyone who has liked and shared these Tuesday posts. I look forward to sharing more about my journey with you all and hope you continue to enjoy the lower carb/alkaline recipes along the way!

Change your mindset in order to see the results!

dbd421d9241dcaecd45324036aa26ddc

~Favorite Food Post~ Taste the Rainbow…

If I had to actually have a favorite food post, it would have to be the one that Tori Spelling shared today(click HERE for post) which is an article from POPSUGAR Moms. I love the vibrant colors of the vegetables and fruit, the various ways one could enjoy the rainbow colors in a single meal or snack!

For me this is beyond enticing! I love pairing bright vegetables with low carb pasta and putting them on low carb/high fiber wraps.

What are some of your favorite rainbow meals?

HAPPY EATING!!

Zucchini Pasta with Chicken

I can’t say enough good things about this low carb and somewhat alkaline dish. It’s a nice alternative to regular noodles, especially if you can’t have them anymore. I don’t like to over cook mine and like for there to be enough of a crunch to them so it doesn’t feel like I’m eating mush.

Over at A Sweet Pea Chef, you can see just how easy it is to make these zucchini noodles. Granted I prefer mine without the skin but you can leave it on if you like. Just be sure to wash them thoroughly if you decide to leave the skin on.

Thursday Night Dinner 051

3 zucchini, washed, and peeled into strips

1/4 onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tblsp peanut or coconut oil

2 tomatoes, cut into strips

handful of marinated chicken strips

1/2–1 tsp favorite Italian Seasoning

pinch of salt and pepper

Parmesan cheese, optional

Thursday Night Dinner 001

Add the zucchini noodles, chopped onions, minced garlic and marinated chicken strips into a large saute pan with peanut or coconut oil.

Thursday Night Dinner 004    Thursday Night Dinner 005

I like the flavor of the Mrs. Dash Tomato Basil Garlic seasoning. Add it, the pinch of salt and pepper to the pan. Give a little stir and let this cook down for 5–10 minutes.

Thursday Night Dinner 008    Thursday Night Dinner 021

Before serving, add in the strips of tomato and cook just to take the chill of the tomato.

Thursday Night Dinner 049    Thursday Night Dinner 045

Parmesan cheese is optional, but there you have it. In about 15 minutes you’ll have a delicious low carb meal, you can serve this us with gluten free low carb garlic bread and salad on the side.

Enjoy!

Back in the Saddle Again…

Morning all, trust all my USA followers had a blessed 4th of July 🙂 We had a wonderful time with my brother’s family and loving on some sweet kiddos! Hoping we can get together again in five months for Christmas 🙂 That will be here in no time.

Saturday I started to come down with what I could only assume was a cold since I don’t have allergies. Woke up sneezing, inside of my nostrils burning, post nasal drip later on, sinus headache, and just that general run down feeling. But I was prepared to kick this cold’s butt…grabbed a bag of frozen broccoli, a small handful of grilled chicken strips and cooked it up seasoning it with ginger, turmeric, and a little soy sauce. Left the broccoli crisp to preserve the nutrients. Ate some strawberries and blueberries on the side sweetened with stevia and a splash of lemon juice. I felt better after eating that but I did nap for a couple of hours.

Yesterday I didn’t want to risk spreading the cold to someone else at church so I stayed home, had an alkaline/low carb lunch (zucchini noodles and chicken), by 5pm I was cold and couldn’t get warm. My wonderful boy brought me the afghan blanket my Mom made me and the new scarf I received from my sis in law. Wrapped up and again snoozed. Woke up drenched in sweat and fever obviously gone and severely parched. But I was feeling better, even this morning I’m feeling better than I did yesterday!

I say all of that to make the case for the alkaline lifestyle. It obviously works, if it didn’t then I would be worse today, high fever, and doped up on cold meds. Yesterday I took a total of three cordicidin just to help with the sneezing and runny nose symptoms, but if I hadn’t adhered to what I knew would kill the cold bug then I wouldn’t be writing today 🙂

In the wake of our patriotic holiday, food comas, and for some hangovers let’s make the right choices today toward better health. Instead of a second or third doughnut, have an apple. Choose a crisp tart apple that is relatively low in sugar (Granny Smith’s are the best).

If you’re in need of an energy boost eat some cucumber slices. While it is a watery vegetable(very hydrating), it has a purifying effect on the digestive system. You can also drink cucumber water, which is just “steeping” a few slices of cucumber in your cool water for an hour before drinking. Add some sliced lemon for added flavor!

Raw broccoli, kale, spinach, romaine lettuce, and escarole are just a few dark green vegetable choices that are high on the alkaline scale and full of amazing benefits. Make a tossed salad with all of the above, dress it up with a squeeze of lemon, a drizzle of olive oil, and a pinch of sea salt. It’s a light and refreshing lunch alternative to the heavier salads found in fast food restaurants, and a great boost for over all health! Especially when the benefits include:: Vitamin A, C, K, folate, potassium, fiber, manganese, magnesium, iron, and amino acids.

Other energizing alkaline foods that will help you through out the day are bananas, apricots, dried figs, dates, pineapple, and raisins. Carrots, beets, cabbage, cauliflower, and wheat grass will provide energy…plus they make yummy drinks when juiced!

Wishing you all a wonderful energized Monday!!!

 

Baking Soda: Going Beyond the Cookbook

Good morning everyone! Hope your day has been fantabulous so far 🙂  I have several irons in the fire here lately, coming down on the wire with a few projects and posts to share, so exciting and I can’t wait to get it up here for everyone to enjoy 🙂

Today I wanted to share some info about baking soda and all it’s usefulness. It’s not just for cooking or putting out fires, there’s so many handy dandy uses for this bitter powder. I have used it for a number of things, other than for Irish Soda Bread (that’s for another post). The most recent way I’ve used it was on a burn. Even a seasoned cook/baker as myself will have accidents in the kitchen but the best way I have found to stop the burn from hurting is to apply a baking soda paste! I know, you’re thinking back to health class and the textbook saying never apply baking soda to a burn, granted if you have burned the skin away you wouldn’t want to do that. Seek medical attention for such a burn, but for minor burns this remedy works great!

Applying a paste made out of baking soda will help to lessen the damage and relieve pain. To do this, mix 1 tablespoon of soda with 1 teaspoon of water, put the paste on the burn and wrap it loosely with a clean bandage. A baking soda bath can also be helpful. Simply add a quarter to a half cup of baking soda to a warm (not hot) bath and soak.

Since the burn was on my thumb…

Ninja Thumb hard at work!

Ninja Thumb hard at work!

Taking a soda bath wasn’t necessary. However, I did have reapply the paste before going to bed. Even from the first application of the baking soda paste the pain was instantly gone! I had kept my thumb on ice for a couple of hours and ever time I took it off my thumb would burn and throb. The next day the redness was minimal and the area that would have become a blister was flat. My thumb was tender for a couple of days and I noticed that my skin was peeling in that area several days later. So, for minor burns definitely try baking soda paste never again will I use an ice pack.

But the amazing uses don’t stop there. I came across an article with 75 ways to use baking soda, yet I know there are so many more! Amazon has book called “Baking Soda: Over 500 Fabulous, Fun, and Frugal Uses You’ve Probably Never Thought Of“, it’s on sale and is available with Prime two-day shipping. 

I love cleaning with it too! It’s great for making jewelry sparkle, both silver and gold, no need to spend money on those expensive jewelry cleaners. I shared a simple recipe on the Night Owl Kitchen Facebook Page, so if you missed it here it is:

1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 tablespoon dish detergent
1 cup water
1 piece aluminum foil

Directions:
1. Heat water in the microwave for 1 or 2 minutes.
2. Cut a piece of aluminum foil that roughly covers the bottom of a small bowl (like a cereal bowl).
3. Pour hot water into bowl. Place salt, soda, and dishwashing liquid into bowl. Place jewelry on top of foil and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse jewelry in cool water and dry jewelry completely with soft cloth. Discard solution after use and make a new batch next time.
4. According to wire-sculpture.com, “this works well for gold-filled, brass, german (nickel) silver, and sterling silver. I have even cleaned jewelry with freshwater pearls, shell cameos and mother of pearl with no problem.”

I have used this on my silver jewelry and the pieces look brand new. I have also used it in the bathroom, especially the boys bathroom. It helps to deodorize and it’s great for freshening up the sink in the kitchen! Root Simple(click here) has some great tips to use baking soda and even some interesting ways to apply it. I especially found her application of it in the bath tub/shower informative. How many of us actually use homemade bathing products? I certainly don’t, but should, it’s a nice thought and I love buying such products from people who take the time to make them. I’m as guilty as the next person when it comes to buying products off a shelf and grumble over the soap scum and strange red residue that forms around the shower drainer. Seriously, it’s disgusting! However, Mrs. Homegrown, points out that using homemade products won’t leave a soap scum film in the shower or tub which makes for easier cleaning! I think that has sold me lol Anything that cuts my cleaning time is a good enough reason to change!

Beyond cooking and baking with it, what have you used baking soda for?

Amanda Gayle

Related Articles:

Deodorizing Wash

Baking Soda:Use This to Remove Splinters — and to Address Many Other Health Needs

Baking soda – 30 handy tips

61 uses for baking soda

27 Ways to Clean with Baking Soda

3 ways to activate baking soda

Baking Soda vs. Baking Powder