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Healthy Eating is Not a Resolution – it is a Lifestyle

If eating healthier next year is a resolution of yours, read why meal planning needs to be a huge part of it.

Read why meal planning is a must for your healthy eating journey. Download your free 2018 calendars!No, we shouldn’t think about maintaining a healthy lifestyle in January alone. But you know what? A new year is a great reminder to renew your motivation and health plan.

Each year I create my weight-loss resolutions, and 2018 was no different. In this blog post, I share my main goal: meal planning.

(Psst – be sure to sign up and download my free menu planning calendars!)

Download your free meal planning calendars for 2018! Choose blank or numbered ones, and start your healthy journey from day one.

Keep the Weight Off

A research study showed that people who planned their meals were less likely to be obese. Although meal planning will not directly cause weight reduction, it is a habit that helps you stay healthier. A person who can keep up with meal planning can also keep up exercise, healthy cooking, and strict shopping. Not to mention, planning your meals and shopping ahead of time reduces stress, which reduces stress eating. Win!

Saves Money

Time and time again, I have watched my grocery bill shrink when I shop according to a menu and list. Although I have little to no will power at restaurants, for some reason I can do a pretty solid job of sticking to a shopping list in a grocery store.

People may tell you that eating healthy is expensive, but that has never been the case for me. Yes, almond flour is more expensive than wheat flour, but I end up buying about five times fewer items on my whole trip. When you don’t buy sweets and junk, you save money – who knew!

Eliminates Food Waste

If you are like me, you enjoy a good meal of leftovers. But many times, I end up wasting ingredients that were used in one recipe. Meal planning eliminates this type of food waste because you can plan two or three meals with the same ingredient, like sour cream or milk. Be smart with the types of recipes you plan for the week!


Ready to get your year off to a great start? Download your free diet workbook and menu planning calendars today! Click here to get started.

Download your free diet workbook and menu planning calendars!

Joy of Cooking Low Carb Cook Through – Week 1

I tried three recipes from the Joy of Cooking cookbook and made sure they were low carb. See the recipes and how we liked them.

Cook through the Joy of Cooking, and make each recipe low carb!As you may recall, I recently purchased the kitchen bible, The Joy of Cooking. My goal was to cook through the recipes to find the low carb recipes and make the high carb recipes healthier.

No, I do not plan to have a new recipe every single day. But I do plan to work through it slowly, sharing the journey with you as I go!

Here are the results of my first week of the cook through! I tried Chicken Paprika (page 431), Turkey Meatballs (445), and Creamy Coleslaw (161). I liked all three; see why and try the recipes yourself!

Chicken Paprika

The Joy of Cooking Chicken PaprikaAs I was cooking this recipe, I was a bit worried. Would the sauce cook down? Would the paprika be overpowering? I used chicken breasts instead of legs and thighs, so would it work?

Yes, no, and yes. The dish was pretty delicious. When I make it next time, I plan to use the full 1/4 cup of paprika (I was a bit spice-shy) to get the full flavor in the dish. Try it yourself!

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken boneless, skinless breasts, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 large onion, sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup paprika
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock or broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Fresh lemon juice

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat, then add the chicken. Cook chicken then remove from the pan. Add the onions to the pan and cook for about ten minutes, until they are translucent. Add paprika, garlic, chicken broth, bay leaf, salt, and pepper. Stir and bring to a boil to reduce the sauce, stirring constantly for about ten minutes. Reduce heat, add chicken back in, and whisk in the sour cream. Bring back to a boil for about five minutes. Turn off heat and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and fresh lemon juice.

Turkey Meatballs and Cole Slaw

The Joy of Cooking Turkey Meatballs and Coleslaw, made low carbWhen I make meatballs, I usually add seasoning to the meat and call it good. For this turkey meatball recipe, I was excited because it called for ingredients that I had never tried in the meatballs. Other than me overcooking them and drying them out a bit, the meatballs were amazing. This will definitely be a staple in our house. I switched out the bread crumbs for almond flour to make it low carb. And to use up the cabbage I had and make a side dish for the meatballs, I whipped up a creamy coleslaw recipe from the book. I did not have carrots, but it still tasted yummy. Try one or both for yourself!

Turkey Meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons almond flour (in meatballs)
  • 1 cup almond flour (for coating)

Combine all ingredients except the cup of almond flour. Make golf-ball-size meatballs, then roll each in the almond flour to lightly coat. Either cook in 2 tablespoons of olive oil on medium heat in a skillet for ten minutes or on a cookie sheet in the oven at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes.

Cole Slaw

Ingredients

  • 1/2 head of cabbage, sliced very thin
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar (or white vinegar if you do not have cider)
  • 3/4 Tablespoon sugar substitute
  • 1/2 cup grated carrots
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
  • Black pepper and salt to taste

Mix everything except the cabbage in a bowl. Then add the cabbage and stir until cabbage is coated. Refrigerate and enjoy later!


Will you try these recipes? As you cook and eat on your healthy journey, use our free Diet Isn’t a Dirty Word workbook to track your progress and stay on track!

A free workbook to make your low carb diet easier!

And if you want a deeper dive into my silly story, and the reason I started DIADW, take a peek at my eBook on Amazon Kindle. You will even find my 11 favorite carb replacement recipes!

Want to be healthy but hate to cook?


* This post contains affiliate links to Amazon for cookbooks I love and use. When you purchase products on Amazon using my links, I do make a small commission. Thank you for your support and happy cooking!

Finding the Joy in Low Carb Cooking

You have seen people cook through a cookbook, but no one has gone through one and made each recipe low carb. We plan to attempt that in the next year!

Try doing a low carb cookthrough with the Joy of CookingAs you know by now, I am not a super enthusiastic cook. But after low carb eating and binge-watching “Top Chef” on Hulu, my appreciation for good cooking grows by the day.

I was so inspired that I went on Amazon and purchased the beloved bible of the kitchen called Joy of Cooking.

Per usual, my daily diet has been up and down as we go into the holidays, so an idea occurred to me:

Why not mix my goal of low carb eating with my newfound interest in the Joy of Cooking book?

So, for the next several months, you will find little tests on the blog! When I am able to successfully find low carb ideas or when I successfully convert recipes to low carb, I will share the story, recipe, and photos here on the blog.

Have any recommendations for me? Other cookbooks that changed your diet or life? Leave me a comment!


Want to be healthy but hate to cook?Need a breakthrough in your low carb journey? Check out my short little story on how I was able to shift my mindset about dieting! Or download our free workbook by clicking the image below. Good luck!

Download your free diet workbook!

Why a Bad Meal Will Not Ruin Your Low Carb Diet

Think one bad meal will throw off your entire low carb diet? Think again.

Why a Bad Meal Will Not Ruin Your Low Carb DietOkay, tell me if this sounds familiar.

You have started your healthy eating journey, but alas! You have guests in town, and together you enjoy delicious, unhealthy meals. Before you know it, your clothes are tight again and you feel all bloated. Damn. You try to start eating healthy again, and then BAM. A bad lunch gets you off track. Oh well, you can start again next week. Might as well enjoy carby foods this week…

This mindset has been mine many times. And every time I slide back into bad habits, I feel defeated.

Is a week of bad eating really ruin my hard work, though?

I decided to test this theory. I tried to see if a streak of healthy eating could counteract a streak of bad eating – see my results below!

The Test

Monday through Thursday of the test week was spent getting back on my healthy eating journey. My starting weight was back to 13 pounds heavier than my goal, I felt bloated, and my clothes were tight. Bad for me, but good for gauging the effectiveness of my test.

On Monday I stayed low carb, even giving up coffee. A good day. I skipped breakfast, snacked on deli meat throughout the day, then ate a healthy dinner.

On Tuesday, I again stayed low carb all day. I even managed to work in 45 minutes of moderate exercise!

Wednesday and Thursday were not all low carb. During my evening book club on Wednesday, I scarfed-down about six no-bake cookies. Yikes. And Thursday’s lunch at work had mashed potatoes. Not a complete success, but again, I wondered if it would ruin my two days of great food choices.

Each day of the week I slept seven to eight hours and drank three to five 12-oz glasses of water. So, did my two meals of high carb foods throw off my entire diet?

NO.

No, you ask? Six no-bake cookies and mashed potatoes did not undo all of my work?

No, and I actually lost five pounds. Yes, mostly water weight, but the improvement is proof that a couple of slip-ups do not ruin the work you put in the rest of the time.

After four days and with a few bad meals, I was still able to see a difference in my body.

My point? Don’t give up. Never give up. If you enjoy a meal that is off-track, use the next meal as a fresh start. Get back to your plan and your menu. You got this. Good luck!


Want tips and recipes to help you on your low carb journey? I have a book that is only $0.99 to help even those who hate cooking. Get yours today!

Want to be healthy but hate to cook?

Also be sure to grab your FREE Diet Isn’t a Dirty Word workbook! Read strategies and track your own journey to be healthier you.

A free workbook to make your low carb diet easier!

Introducing Diet Isn’t a Dirty Word!

Welcome to the Diet Isn’t a Dirty Word blog!

Welcome to the blog! This website will be a place to learn more about the Diet Isn’t a Dirty Word book series, and the blog will contain stories and research related to healthy eating for those who hate spending time in the kitchen.

Stay tuned for the book launches and upcoming blog posts!