Monday, February 25

Cooking Lean

"Oh my gosh, two posts from DK in the same month? Within a week of one another? Something crazy is going on here!"

There is something crazy going on. We've spent 25 days exploring low cholesterol, low calorie, low fat options and surprisingly there have been a few gems out there that we are actually looking forward to eating again. So inspired was I by this morning's breakfast (peanut butter and jelly stuffed french toast sticks) that I thought I would pass some of these resources along to you.

The cooking website that we are using for this week's meals is This site takes delicious restaurant quality meals and pares down the ingredient list and serving sizes so that you are able to enjoy them without expanding your waistline. So far, all of the recipes that we have tried from SkinnyKitchen have been great; we particularly have enjoyed the Skinny Thai Chicken and Peanut Noodles and Skinny PB & J French Toast Sticks.

Last week's meals came from Dr. Phil's Ultimate Weight Solution Cookbook. Unfortunately, that is where the mushroom infused meatloaf recipe came from (steer clear of that one!). It is also home to a recipe for no-fry chicken fried steak, a healthy version of macaroni and cheese, and berry smoothies that are wonderful. If you're looking for comfort food, I recommend taking a look at this book.

Early in the month we ate through the Taste of Home: Guilt Free Cooking : 356 Home Style Recipes for Healthier Living. It has the longest title of any cookbook I've ever owned, but it has some great recipes and tips for substituting ingredients in it. I do tread a little bit lightly through this cookbook as some of the recipes definitely taste like diet food. But there is some great stuff in there, too.

I hope these sources are helpful to you, and that you enjoy them as much as I do. If you cook healthy, what cookbook or website do you use for recipes or ideas? Please feel free to let me know in the comments below.

Thursday, February 21

Mushroom Meatloaf

This might be a little ranty, and for that I hope you will forgive me.

Mr. Kawaii and I have been doing an excellent job of eating healthy this month. Despite the temptations of Valentine's Day candies and all-you-can-eat seafood offers, we have hunkered down with our celery and egg-whites and have persevered. We did celebrate the big VD (Valentine's Day, not Venereal Disease) with a pizza, but that has been the only big splurge all month.

As a part of this healthier eating campaign, we've been sampling recipes out of a couple of my healthy cooking cook books. Yes, I have owned them both for years and actually use them every once in a while. But this month we've been using them exclusively to try to find low-cholesterol (and thus low fat, high fiber, low sugar) versions of the foods that we love.

Last night's "experiment" was a meatloaf recipe out of the Dr. Phil cookbook. The recipe substituted beef with Veal (yum!) and mushrooms (also yum... right?). The problem with the mushroom substitution is that it was a LOT of mushrooms. The meatloaf ended up being more of a mushroom loaf, the taste of which overwhelmed the little bit of beef and veal that was in it. It was... edible. The first time around, anyway. The leftovers were terrible and made me wish I had a cheeseburger and a milkshake to wash it down with.

Overall, the experimenting with healthful foods has been good. We've discovered oatmeal pancakes and baked french toast, both of which surprised us with their yummyness. I've perfected the fruit smoothie, so that's good too. All in all it hasn't been bad.

But if you're on this journey with me... avoid the mushroom meatloaf. Yuck.

Monday, February 4

High Cholesterol and Weight Loss

Hello out there. I can't believe it's been three months since my last posting. Since my diagnosis back in November, a lot has been going on. We made it through the holidays and into the new year with a bang and 2013 is already full of some amazing projects.

One of my tasks in January was to go back to the doctor for a blood panel to check my cholesterol levels. One of the side effects of Polycystic Fibrosis, which goes hand in hand with difficulty losing weight, is perpetually high cholesterol. Well the results are in and I do indeed have high numbers. The doctor said that if I was in my 50's instead of 30's that he would have put me on medication immediately, but since I'm still recovering from childbirth, still "young-ish", and have already lost 10lbs since my diagnosis & new medication that he would give me the next year to try to lower my numbers through diet and exercise.

If you've been following this blog for any length of time you'll know that I have been doing my best to stay active and eat right for the past several years. Has my diet been perfect? No. But most of what goes into my body is certainly not considered unhealthy for the average woman. Unfortunately, the way my body chemistry is set up I need to be more careful than most.

And so, now that I've pushed the scale down to 186 lbs. and gotten back into my size 14 jeans (yay!) my husband and I are going to try to push it all a little further. We have committed to cutting out red meat, dairy, desserts and high calorie/high cholesterol foods for the month of February. We've only hit February 4th and I've already had some tough moments (sifting the yolks out of my eggs this morning almost brought me to tears), but overall this week hasn't been as difficult as I thought it might be. I don't think I could do it without the support of my dear husband - if he came home smelling like bacon and egg salad sandwiches I don't know what I'd do.