Munch On Lunch……
As somebody who has spent many hours with nutritionist, doctors, nurses, and professionals in the field of “I am going to tell you what to eat, when, where, and how much”, I have learned a lot about various different diets. I have come to many different conclusions over the years but I think I have finally broken the code. Want to know my secret….there isn’t one. Everyone is different; we respond to food and nourishment differently as humans, and each of our bodies need and crave a plethora of substances. An avid runner will need higher protein and a significant amount of water throughout the day, while somebody who doesn’t work out as much may need a little less of both and still maintain a healthy lifestyle.
I also do not believe that it is ever healthy to cut one food group entirely out of your diet (unless of course you are vegetarian/vegan, in that case I empathize), however removing carbs and eating pork fat is the epitome of unhealthy, and not necessarily sustainable. Complex carbs and carbohydrates are in everything, removing them entirely from ones diet will narrow the options one has. This lends itself to major upsets and rapid weight gain; essentially you are shocking your body back into carb coma reality. Developing a healthy eating cycle of fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, high fiber, and whole grains is the best way to maintain a healthy lifestyle. If you pack your fridge and pantry with goodness, goodness you will consume…(I know… I know, I am the food Confucius).
One thing that I have struggled with and still find myself battling is time. Healthy fresh, food can be time consuming and life gets really busy. Sometimes I forget to eat altogether and then when my body is shutting down, I am shaking in hunger, and my world is ending. I pop something in the microwave. EPIC FAIL. One of my followers asked me a really great question that fell right in line with my struggle. I thought I would answer it because I firmly believe that in our GO GO GO culture we get a little lost; sometimes we need a few tips to get back on our eating cycle track……
“One food issue I have is that I forget to eat sometimes because I am too busy or slightly absent-minded at moments. My mom has called me the accidental anorexic. This is a problem for me because I have a super-fast metabolism and am susceptible to hypoglycemia. Do you have any suggestions for meals/snacks that are easy to prepare, have a good amount of protein (preferably the vegetarian kind), and delicious.”
Delicious is the word…who wants to force feed themselves grossness when they are stressed out and busy.
Hypoglycemia is another serious issue that needs to be addressed here. I struggle with it myself and it can be a little scary, it is most common with individuals who are diabetic but people who aren’t (like myself) can struggle with low blood sugar as well. The Mayo Clinic describes the symptoms as…
Mild hypoglycemia can make you feel hungry or like you want to vomit. You could also feel jittery or nervous. Your heart may beat fast. You may sweat. Or your skin might turn cold and clammy.
Moderate hypoglycemia often makes people feel short-tempered, nervous, afraid, or confused. Your vision may blur. You could also feel unsteady or have trouble walking.
Severe hypoglycemia can cause you to pass out. You could have seizures. It could even cause a coma or death.
If you’ve had hypoglycemia during the night, you may wake up tired or with a headache. And you may have nightmares. Or you may sweat so much during the night that your pajamas or sheets are damp when you wake up. (EWW, I have so done this)
With a medical problem like this and a high metabolism it is vital that you are continually feeding yourself high protein items and at least 6 times as day. Always eat a healthy well-rounded breakfast such as oatmeal, yogurt, fruit, cereal (the decent kind not sugar hoops or loops or what I call sugary shit), and eat a good size lunch. Lunch is in the middle of your day and you have time to process it before you have a lite dinner, it will keep you going and you won’t be as likely to crash around 3PM.
My mother struggles with hypoglycemic tendencies as well, her solution was to shove a banana down her throat when she got what she calls “the shakes”. It was a good temporary fix but bananas are starchy, carby, sugary, goodness. They have wonderful health benefits, but not nearly enough protein to sustain a hypoglycemic long term.
Top Ten High Protein Snacks:
1. Apple slices (or dried apple chips) with a scoop of fresh or all natural peanut or almond butter. Most health food stores sell the fresh ground, nothing but peanuts version, and some grocery chains are selling it in the deli as well.
2. Hummus with fresh veggies or whole wheat pita. Be careful with the pita bread but hummus is a tasty way to get some protein into your system.
3. Almonds…..mix some unsalted, raw almonds with all natural, dark, 80% coco, chocolate chips, some dried cranberries, and you have a high protein delicious treat!
4. Avocado slices on whole wheat toast with alfalfa sprouts. This is great by itself to keep it vegetarian but you can always add a slice of all natural deli sliced turkey breasts and eat it like an open face sandwich.
5. Greek yogurt. Twice the protein of regular yogurt, and there are so many tasty options out there now.
6. Cottage cheese topped with local honey and walnuts….they make 80 calorie little packs of cottage cheese, delish!
7. Steamed edamame (soy beans).
8. Sandwich thin (100 calories) and chunk lite white tuna. (mix it with a little lemon juice, pepper, and teaspoon of veganaise.) or just eat it with some lettuce like a wrap.
9. A small glass of Almond milk and a Cliff or Luna bar!
10. A low fat mozzarella cheese stick with a piece of fruit. I like it with pears, apples, and peaches the best.