“Do NOT Eat That Run-over Hershey’s Krackel
on the Ground in the Parking Lot!”
No, that is not me reprimanding my two-year-old. That’s my inner dialogue (to the chocolate addict in me who is going through withdrawal) as I resist the urge to drop down onto all fours and go to town on that morsel!
But doing this Whole30 cleanse from sugar and, yes, chocolate, has definitely left me missing my Trader Joe’s chocolate covered almonds with sea salt and having some (slightly irrational) fantasies about concrete crushed Krackels (which is really gross and sad when you think about it).
I have also had many dreams this past week about indulging in Chai Lattes and swimming in tubs full of pasta. I’m told these are all normal withdrawal symptoms (is there a support group for this?).
But seriously. It hasn’t been that bad.
Week one of Whol30 has been an adventure in discipline, and I’ve had a great time finding and making up some new, tasty dishes. It has gotten us back into meal planning, we are eating out a lot less (which is saving us a little money as well), and it has slowed us down in a good way. We are beginning to appreciate this clean eating, and are becoming more sensitive to what our bodies truly need.
Yes, Greg and I have both been a bit more feisty and foggier as our bodies begin to recharge and detox. There have been ups and downs in mood swings. We’ve had some headaches and felt “empty” and “hungry” as we learn to be less dependent on sugar and simple carbs.
BUT nothing worth doing is every easy. All in all, week one has proved to us how much we really need this cleanse, and we feel confident that hitting the “reset” button on our systems is a good thing!
Things I’ve learned this week:
1. Stir Frys are life savers!- With some pre-cut veggies on hand, meat, and a few spices, I made several tasty and easy whole30 meals using only one pan on the stove! See a recipe below!
2.Keep already cooked, or at least thawed, meat on hand. -The day would get away from me and I would be stuck at lunch time with nothing easy to prepare. This is where, in the past, I would so often reach for the fast, snacky, filler foods before like a quesadilla, or chips and salsa, or a box of mac n cheese (talk about putting Mommy to sleep!). Having some boiled chicken, or bacon left over from breakfast on hand was helpful.
3. Hard boiled eggs! – A great, quick protein snack for in between meals. Chop them up with some avocado, raw carrots, celery, and a pinch of sea salt and paprika for a kind of egg salad. The avocado could be mashed a bit to create a creamier texture (akin to mayonnaise). You could also add some bacon pieces (now we’re just getting crazy!).
4. Maté- Yerba Maté is a wild shrub from Argentina that makes a delicious, flavorful tea. It’s a great alternative to coffee (though coffee is not banned on Whole30). I found it helpful to enjoy some in the late morning during this first week when I got cravings for sugar (as long as I knew that it wasn’t legit hunger I was feeling, but a sugar craving). As a nursing mom, I still need lots of god fats and calories, so I would snack as needed, but maté helped curb my appetite for unhealthy snacks. Maté is a good source of calcium and antioxidants and gives you a natural boost of energy without the spike and crash that coffee or caffeinated soft drinks often result in.
Here are a few of our successful meals
from this week!
CHIPOTLE CHICKEN & PROSCIUTTO STIR FRY
Easily thrown together from left over boiled chicken I had on hand, and some veggies.
2 Boiled chicken breasts, shredded into chunky pieces
4-5 slices of Prosciutto, torn into smaller pieces
1-2 TBS Coconut oil
1 1/2 Cups torn kale leaves
2 large yellow & red bell peppers, cut into strips
1-2 cups of red cabbage, chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
1/2 a medium red onion, chopped
Chipotle Seasoning to taste – I used a local mix I bought, but you could just sprinkle to taste some or all of the following: Black pepper, sea salt, oregano, gran. onion, cumin, orange peel, cilantro, spearmint, and bay leaves.
In a large skillet pan, heat the oil on medium. Add the onion, garlic, and kale and cook for 2 minutes. Add the prosciutto and red cabbage and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the cooked chicken, peppers, and seasoning. Cook for 2-4 minutes or until peppers are slightly soft, but not limp.
A protein-packed snack, or dinner!
Hard boiled eggs
Ground turkey or beef
Seasoning (salt, pepper, paprika, garlic, whatever else you feel like throwing in!)
Spicy mustard for dipping
Mash up ground meat with your seasoning of choice. Peel and pat dry the eggs. Wrap the meat around the eggs (I just used my fingers and stuck a bit at a time, some people roll out little pancakes of meat and roll it around the egg…whatever works for you!). Place on a baking sheet lined with tin foil and bake for 20 minutes.
Serve with mustard, or pico de gallo, and a side salad. We added a dessert of kiwi and blood oranges!
SPINACH & ARTICHOKE STUFFED CHICKEN
The title is a mouthful, and so were these delicious morsels! Juicy and super easy to prepare. We enjoyed them with roasted sweet potatoes and yams, and kale chips on the side.
1 1/2 C Spinach
1 can artichoke hearts
1/4 cup coconut milk
1 Pkg Prosciutto
8 Chicken filets, or 4 breasts sliced lengthwise into filets
Steam the spinach then combine with artichokes in a food processor. Add coconut milk gradually. Add salt and lemon pepper to taste.
Preheat oven to 350.
First pat the chicken filets with a paper towel to remove excess water. Then, spread about a tablespoon of the stuffing onto one side of the filet. Roll the chicken and wrap with one slice of prosciutto. Hold together with a toothpick. Repeat with remaining breasts.
Place side by side in a Pyrex glass baking dish.
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until juicy and chicken is white through when pierced.