Hubby decide that for the first quarter of 2018 he wanted to adopt a high protein and low carb/no carb diet; and beyond keep to a lower carb diet as he feels his body runs better with that combination.
It’s a challenging one for me as “head chef”. A few years ago we both engaged in Dr & Dr Eades Lose Your Middle Aged Middle, eating plan. It worked. We both lost several inches around our middles.
However, and here’s the biggie for me, the diet plan made us completely antisocial. Not because of the bad breath you might obtain from living solely on protein… we were very careful about our oral hygiene; but because it made it almost impossible to go out socially.
By making a few tweaks to the diet to better encompass our lifestyle we did find a way. For example, in restaurants we could have ham egg and chips without the chips or a mixed grill again without the chips. I recommend you ask the waiter to leave the chips off the plate altogether because its much tougher just to choose not to eat them when they’re there and smelling so damned good!
For Hubby it was a great diet, He loves nothing more than a high meat content meal. He loves grilled bacon and fried eggs for breakfast every day. He doesn’t have high cholesterol or blood pressure so that’s OK. According to the doctor he’s fit as a fiddle (even for a man of his age 😉 ) He could even stomach the disgusting body builder high protein meal replacement drinks. I, on the other hand would wretch at the smell of them so in the end I just didn’t bother with the shakes at all.
Overall the diet was successful, we didn’t feel hungry, we weren’t miserable and we both lost 1.5 – 2 stone.
Several years on our weights have exceeded our pre diet weights. As with all diets, they just plain don’t work long-term. UNLESS you can find dietary habits that fit your lifestyle and the new eating regime becomes your lifestyle choice.
We’re trying again. John is back to high protein / low carb and I’ve taken from the Dr Eades book those recipes and tips that worked before and done my own thing for him. For Hubby I cook up loads of interesting meat based or egg based meals and he can have as much cheese as he wants with those. So I make lots of creamy/cheesy sauces which he loves, and as long as he supplements his diet with potassium, magnesium and multivits, hes a happy bunny.
I decided I don’t do as well on high protein and low carb. I could do it short-term but it wouldn’t be sustainable for me. I prefer veggie options quite often and would rather have no meats than all meats. I struggle to give up fruit and salad and much of that is a no go if you are being a strict no carb dieter.
I’ve chosen to cut out cake/alcohol/chocolate and crisps. and drastically reduce my bread and cheese intake. Funnily enough the only one I’m struggling with is crisps. I crave them constantly. I’ve replaced those with natural seeds and nuts and I salt those myself – it seems to (almost) satisfy my needs. I also discovered during the first diet that nuts and seed vary greatly in their carb/protein ratio .. i can’t have walnuts but i tend to stick to hazelnuts, almonds and pecan and add pumpkin seeds to the mix.
Very occasionally I crave chocolate but other than a couple of teeny treats. I’ve managed that too, even when I’ve had PMT (big high-five to me). (BTW I cannot stand carob, it’s NOT an equivalent option in my opinion, I don’t care what anyone says! I’d rather do without completely. )
These days there so many great alternatives on the market and many of them can be bought in mainstream supermarkets.
This alternative to spaghetti is available in our local Aldi store. It has 6.6g of carb per 100g compared to 76g in standard durum wheat spaghetti, most importantly hubby likes it and it only takes 3 minutes to cook. So I can stick to my normal whole-wheat spaghetti and make a bit of this for him.
Of course there are fresh veg options to spaghetti, which are really easy to prep yourself but can be bought pre prepared , for example courgetti (which I think is available in the fresh veg section of most supermarkets these days – but is a very expensive way of buying fresh veg #justsaying) . Really easy to make yourself though.
I make hubby mashed cauliflower or cauliflower cheese to sit in place of potato on his plate. But you can also rice cauliflower….and if that sounds like a lot of hassle you can even buy it ready done… (I got this in Tescos)
Then there are all the alternative flours. I bought The Groovy Food Organic Coconut Flour from Tescos in my home delivery. Only 16g carb compared to plain flour at 81g
I bought it to make this Fat Head low carb pizza base with a recipe from Ditch the Carbs.com (thanks Graham Miller for this link) thinking it would be a good alternative to almond flour (which Tescos didn’t have ). Subsequently I’ve discovered this Sukrin sesame flour with only 6g carb (although it was in my local whole food shop Vans Good Foods in Llandindod Wells; and it wasn’t cheap).
So how did the pizza go?…..
I doubled up the quantity as Hubby can easily eat a whole normal pizza to himself and I can usually manage with a bit of patience and persuasion. However, these were so filling even though his was bigger than mine we each only managed half.
Basically you plonk the mozzarella, and flour in a bowl with the egg and lightly microwave and it will mix into a dough – ts hard to believe, its like a magic trick, I really didn’t expect to get a rollable dough but…
After that its simply a matter of cooking the base, 15 mins in a gas 7/225 degree oven, taking it out, adding your toppings of choice (pre-cooked especially meats), then popping them back for 5 more minutes. Whats more, Hubby said he would happily eat it again. I would too but I might try the coconut or almond flour, I did find it a tad over sesame-y. Extremely filling though and lovely rustic looking.
Just so you know, this post is not affiliates or sponsored in any way. I have tried the products purely for our own health wellbeing and my views on the outcome and mine alone – as they would be even if someone were to ask me to review something (which I am more than happy to do #hinthint 😉