Striking Sugar Out – A Game Plan

chicken, Food, Grain Free, Health, My Story, Paleo, Paleo Treats, Personal, Portland, Primal, Travel, Uncategorized, Vegetables, Whole Eating

After juicing, I knew I wanted to jump right in to a thought out way of eating. I did Whole30 in August of 2015 and absolutely loved the results. Energy, weight loss, clear skin and a feeling of health and vitality only possible through clean eating.

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Sometimes as much as we “plan ahead” life can get in the way derailing our awesome intentions. A trip to the PNW’s food and coffee mecca where “keeping it weird” is the standard protocol – time with family in Portland, OR was much needed – but got my mind off of the clean eating patterns I had set the previous two weeks. I’m not sorry – nope, not one iota. Portland is my sweet spot and a trip there without visiting both seasoned favorites and untried establishments would cause a great heartache. Gluten free treats are on every corner and local coffee shops are more prevalent than Starbucks (praise the GOOD Lord!).

Now, a week later, it’s time to get this health train back on track. Following is my eating protocol that I will be sticking to for X amount of time. Life style eating ya’ll….not gonna put a number of days or weeks on this plan and make  it into a “diet plan”.

Guidelines for my Whole30 eating lifestyle – cutting all sugar, refined carbs, dairy and wheat products. Eating a variety of veggies at every meal. Drinking water and tea to satisfy cravings and curb appetite. Nuts and seeds for snacks and crunchy additives.

GOAL – Continue training my mind, body, and tastes to enjoy clean eating.

So far I’m one day in and it feels great to have a plan in place! Make a vision and execute it!

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Eating Out Paleo :: Pacific Northwest

Eating Out, Food, Food Reviews, Grain Free, Paleo, Paleo Treats, Portland, Primal, Seattle, Spokane, Travel, Tri-Cities, Whole Eating

Eating Out PNWAll those who follow the paleo lifestyle will admit to the fact that finding restaurant options that serve paleo inspired dishes is quite hard, if not impossible. Lots of “no ____” or “Can you substitute _____ for _____’s” is the name of the game when choosing options off of a regular menu.

I’m hoping to find eateries in the Pacific Northwest that have options on their menu specifically inspired for those who eat paleo. Below are a list of restaurants I will be researching and sharing about on future blog posts (other than dicks kitchen, which I have already eaten at twice and previously blogged about).

Caveman Convenience in Spokane, WA

Dicks Kitchen in Portland, OR

Eat Outside the Box – Seattle, WA

Lola in Seattle, WA

Great Harvest Bread Company in Kennewick, WA

 

I am so excited to explore these restaurant options, and hopefully in the near future have the privilege to eat at their storefronts. Not only would I like to try these places, but I know there are online start-ups of paleo making foodies that I want to find. Please pass along any names of businesses you think I should explore and I’ll do my best to report back my findings!

 

Faces of Paleo : Brenda

Faces of Paleo, Health, Interviews, Paleo, Paleo Treats, Primal, Uncategorized, Whole Eating

As a blogger trying to find content that educates, encourages and gives you enjoyment I have decided to find people who have their own paleo journey and interview them for the benefit of my readers. Getting to know people at a personal level and find out about their health journey is such a fun experience for me as it shows that there isn’t one right way to “be healthy”. Yes, there are healthy choices, but the way we work those healthy choices into our daily lives will look differently for everyone. Because of that, I will occasionally have posts labeled “Faces of Paleo” that will be interactive in nature and something both you and I can learn and be encouraged by.

 

Today I want to introduce you to a sweet friend of mine who I met through church a few years back who’s name is Brenda. Her sweet personality, love for the Lord and more recently her embrace of eating paleo have encouraged a friendship between us that has been fun to see grow. I first learned of her decision to start eating paleo last winter when I noticed she was slimming down and looking quite healthy. When I asked Brenda what she was doing, her reply “I’m eating paleo, cutting out sugars and grains!” I was beyond excited and know you’ll enjoy what I learned from her in our time together.


1-Brenda

How long have you been eating paleo?
Since January 2nd 2014

What are your go to recipe sources?
Against All Grain for finding amazing recipes
   Practical Paleo for amazing resources, information and background for eating paleo

Why did you decide to start eating paleo?
My main reason for starting the paleo lifestyle was my health. I was diagnosed with PCOS (Poly Cycstic Ovarian Syndrome) through lab work as I had no major symptoms. Through research on how to treat PCOS naturally, I found the blog Against All Grain.

What have been the hardest foods to give up?
Cheese and specifically, cheese quesadillas. I was literally dreading giving up those.

What were the hardest parts of learning to cook paleo?
Figuring out meal plans for two people with different diet differences, one being paleo and the other eating a normal American diet. Also, having variety in the foods you eat.

What was your solution to cooking for two different palets?
If I made a dish that called for cheese, I would omit the cheese on half for me and put chesse on the other half for my husband.

What kind of sweetener did you find most useful and what treats were your favorite?
Maple syrup for my sweetner
Cobbler, scones and avocado pudding were my go to treats

What kind of things would you eat for snacks?
Almonds, fruit, carrots and cellery. My favorite was roasted almonds that I would flavor with cinnamon and nutmeg or Tuscan seasonings.

What has been the hardest thing about eating paleo?
Eating out as most restaurants don’t have paleo options. My solution – order food and have them take off the non-paleo food items.

Have you noticed a difference with your body?
Yes, my stomach went way…had little belly fat. It was replaced with more of a lean muscle tone (she supplemented her eating lifestyle with going to the gym 3 times a week which was less than she had been going before going paleo). In four months I lost 15 pounds.

Did you ever eat non paleo items?
I ate 95% paleo and the other 5% splurges would be beans a few times a month. I decided to just do it cold turkey!

Words of advice?
Forget what somethings is supposed to taste like and focus on finding “new” recipes that you like.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paleo In A Package

Food, Health, Paleo, Paleo friendly stores, Paleo Treats, plantains, Primal, Uncategorized, Whole Eating

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Eating raw can be a lot of work. Hard work. In an attempt to get away from packaged foods which are full of preservatives, sugars, and ingredients it would take a stack of dictionaries to pronounce their names, the paleo way is a hands on make it yourself lifestyle. This can be tiring and disappointing, especially for those who have little time available to be slaving away in their kitchen. So, for those of you who understand how difficult it can be and to those of you just getting started with this way of eating, I have some great news for you! As I was out running errands today I happened to be in TJ Maxx. Browsing their food isle, I was delighted to find several paleo packaged food options! Now, this might sound like an oxymoron, but I assure you, I am telling the truth.

One of the products I bought to try was made by Laughing Giraffe Organics, and my one complaint is that instead of using maple syrup or honey as a sweetener, they chose agave. Now, I’m my humble opinion, agave isn’t the worst choice, but it’s also not the best and it’s definitely not categorized as “paleo”. With that aside, their Pineapple Snakaroons were phenomenal and made with raw ingredients (other than agave).

Another find was salted plantain chips…no sugar added. To.Die.For! The brand, Turbana, uses simple ingredients to make a delicious product. I bought their lightly salted Plantain Chips, but TJ Maxx had at least two other flavors – Chile Lime and Sweet (not paleo sweetner). I opted for the lightly salted as the other options had small amounts of non-paleo sugar added.

Other items I saw there were chia seeds, products from Two Mom’s in the Raw, fine ground flax seeds, organic cocoa powder, coconut oil supplements and nut and seed clusters. This might not be an exhaustive list as I’m going off of memory, needless to say, I was over the top excited!

So, if you lead a busy life whether it be with a career, running kids around, school, athletics or church and need some easy energy food, take a look at your local TJ Maxx. I know I was pleasantly surprised with what I found.

Cherry Walnut Almond Flour Cookies

Food, Paleo, Paleo Treats, Primal, Whole Eating

   The cookies I am going to share with you today are a unique cross between a cookie and a biscuit in texture. I over baked mine just a tad, but they still came out delicious. Also, I made quite a few substitutions as well as decreased the amount of sweetener I used in them.  As far as substitutions go, because I didn’t have any dried cherries on hand, I rehydrated some dehydrated coconut instead and used that. Also,  I used almond extract instead of vanilla extract (made them soooo yummy and nutty flavored). I would definitely make them again….just hopefully next time I have some kind of dried fruit (cherry, apricot, raisin) to put in them.
Recipe
1 1/2 cups almond flour
1/4 cup butter softened
1/4 cup sugar (for a less sweet cookie, only fill the quarter cup measurer 3/4 of the way full. Also, a good sugar substitute would be coconut sugar)
1 egg
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup shredded coconut(rehydrated) or dried fruit of choice
1/3 cup chopped walnuts 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients together in a medium bowl. Spoon onto greased cookie sheet making medium sized balls. Bake for 8-10 minutes.
 
 

 

Paleo Lemon Bars – Recipe Review

Food, Grain Free, Health, Paleo, Paleo Treats, Recipe Reviews, Whole Eating
    I’ve decided to take a different route today and share with you a new favorite recipe I made this last week-end…paleo lemon bars! Before I started to change the way I eat, this was one of my most favorite desserts, so therefore, when I found a good substitute recipe, I was excited! I found the recipe on Pinterest and it linked me to this site Frugal By Choice, Cheap by Necessity. Unlike what I was used to in a lemon bar, this one has a really delicious custard like top. The lime juice kicks it up a notch and adds perfection to something already yummy! Next time I make this, I’m going to try and cut out some of the honey, make it a bit tarter, and see if it’s still good. No use eating extra sugar if it’s not needed!

 


 

I took this post from my blog I used over a year ago. When looking at this recipe it makes me smile. Lemon bars are a go to dessert for me, and let me tell you, I’ve tried more than one paleo recipe trying to mimic ‘the real thing’. This recipe is by far the most successful and I am not ashamed to say I could eat all of this in one sitting. If you like lemon pudding, my suggestion would be to just make the custard part of this dessert, top with whipped coconut cream and enjoy!

 

Eating Out Paleo :: Portland

Eating Out, Food Reviews, Paleo, Paleo Treats, Portland, Primal, Travel, Whole Eating

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Planning a trip to Portland? Live locally and need a fresh idea on places to eat? Enjoy grass fed beef, in house fermented veggies, coconut milk milkshakes that are customize able , tart strawberry lemonade, paleo dining options?

Dick’s Kitchen, with two locations to choose from, is all that and more. Hearing good reviews about this diner inspired guilt free eatery that has paleo eats on the menu didn’t need a second encouragement for me to give it a whirl. From friendly customer service that made my boyfriend and I feel like the only people being served to a unique location in an old and hipster artsy neighborhood, Dick’s Kitchen was far from disappointing.

I had one of their grass fed burgers called – “THE ELVIS” PIMENTO CHEESE BURGER – House made Pimento Cheese ( though not paleo) was a splurge over the top worth it. In place of a bun – butter lettuce leaves. Also, a side of yam not-fries (baked) and their tart lemonade with strawberries complimented my meal to perfection.

Go.Eat Well.No Guilt.Repeat

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~Pie Heaven~

Food, Grain Free, Paleo, Paleo Treats, Primal, Recipe Reviews

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The request, “all I want for Mother’s Day is a chocolate dessert.” The answer, chocolate coconut cream pie made paleo. I found my inspiration for this dessert after scanning Pinterest looking for anything that stood out to me. Here is the recipe I used. I was a bit leery of using one of the main ingredients, avocado, in a dessert. I decided to give it a whirl despite my apprehensions since I’d seen other recipes do the same. I was not disappointed and am glad I took the leap and expounded my use of yet another fruit.


 

My main point of this blog post today is to inform you that using avocado in dessert is not as weird as I thought. Actually, it adds a decedent creamy smoothness! You couldn’t even tell there was anything out of the ordinary about this pie; in order to make sure it wasn’t just me, I kept the ingredients a secret and just said we were having coconut cream pie. Surprised smiles went around the table when I announced that the base of the pie was avocado. No one would have guessed.

If anything, I want to encourage you to step out side the normal, live on the edge with healthy eating and try something new. If your like me and face food allergies and sensitivities, don’t focus on what you can’t have but rather, focus on all the possibilities there are with the foods you can eat. In the last two weeks I’ve experimented with several new ingredients and have been delightfully surprised: plantains, chia seeds, avocado and coconut cream. It’s been exciting and fun. I invite you to join me in getting creative and try something new!