Click here to go to the web version, with all the photos & links, if you've received this via email.Two and half years ago when I started on this plant-based eating adventure, I was clear that I didn't want my eating style to compromise the joys of sharing meals with friends & family.
"Food is so wrapped up in friendship, family and fun and I don't want to miss out on any of that." -The Healthy Librarian-
So, last week, my 2nd week into my no-added-fat-super-healthy Esselstyn Diet Trial, I had a chance to see just how this diet was going to hold up when I fielded all the "Real Life" curve balls thrown at me! It was holiday time. The 4th of July week.
- My son, daughter-in-law and grandson came to visit for 3 days
- We met my youngest son downtown for dinner at one of Bon Appetit's top 10 new restaurants
- My sister came to visit for 3 days
- Saturday night it was dinner & a movie---once again at a "real" restaurant
- We headed over to our friends' house for a 4th of July dinner
- We took a road-trip adventure for a day--where the only food option was McDonald's or ice cream.
Ann Esselstyn's PERFECT "Nutrient Dense" Wrap - "Unwrapped"
Ann Esselstyn's PERFECT "Nutrient Dense" Wrap - Wrapped
Dr. Neal Barnard's High-Protein Oats & Beans Blueberry Pancakes
Red Bean Chipotle Burgers with Cajun Sweet Potato Fries & Chipotle Hummus
Lasagna with Garlicky Kale, "Herbed Ricotta", Caramelized Onions, & Roasted Tomato Sauce
Low-Fat Spicy Teriyaki Tempeh
Picnic Lunch of Teriyaki Tempeh, topped with Slaw & Red Pepper Hummus
Picnic Snack of Roasted Curried Cauliflower & Carrots with Roasted Red Pepper Hummus Dip
Roasting Curried Cauliflower on Parchment Paper without Oil
Salad of Greens, Soba Noodles, Broccoli, Red Peppers, Tomatoes, & Barbecued Seitan
Sky-High Anti-Oxidant Sangria
So How Did I Fare with House Guests, Restaurants, a Road Trip & as a Dinner Guest?
Piece of cake! Black bean, of course!
The Houseguests: My family is easy. They liked everything.
- My apple-blueberry steel-cut oatmeal was a hit--especially with my grandson--and even with my sis--who is not a big oatmeal fan. I have a new so-easy recipe--I'll share in a later post.
- My "not-so-into-healthy-food" younger son totally loved the oats & beans blueberry pancakes--so if he gives them a thumbs-up, they've got to be good.
- Everyone loved the chipotle bean burgers & fries. My daughter-in-law said, "These fries are sooo good, and not at all greasy! I always want my fries made like this."
- Thumbs up for the PERFECT nutrient-rich wraps! Another hit. My sis & I started brain-storming all kinds of other fillings to try--like Asian veggies with hoisin sauce. Crisped for 10 minutes in a 450 degree oven gives them a perfect crunch. Who would have guessed?
- Homemade cheese-free pizzas, made by my oldest son--we all gobbled them up.
- Sky-high anti-oxidant Sangria--made by my oldest son--quickly devoured.
Dinner at one of Bon Appetit's Top 10 New Restaurants of the Year. I figured I'd get by with a salad dressed with balsamic, a glass of wine, maybe some fresh steamed vegetables. Was I in for a surprise! The new menu for this "farm-to-table organic" restaurant had just come out the day before--and I actually had some oil-free vegan options to choose from. Here's what I had. Amazing!
- Sliced broccoli stems with chili paste & toasted bread crumbs (they held the anchovy paste)--we shared an order.
- Roasted Whole Padron peppers with heirloom garlic & lemon zest--we shared an order.
- Farmer Lee Jones Vegetables Enpapier with heirloom summer vegetables, toasted fregola sarda (looks like Israeli couscous), white miso & saffron potatoes. All just steamed in a hot oven in a parchment paper package!
- Grapefruit Gratinee (shaved ice) with a splash of Chardonnay, fresh blueberries & mint (Turns out I was the only one who had room for dessert!)
Saturday night dinner & a movie. We had not planned on going out to eat, but the movie started early, and ended late. We were hungry & in need of quick food. Thank goodness I had pulled a "Judy Collins", and brought a peach & a Klean Kanteen filled with my Green Smoothie into the theater. But where were we going to go for oil free healthy food? One of Dr. Esselstyn's patients had told me he had a whole list of restaurants that work for him, but his favorite was one of those "stir-fry" wok joints. They have some oil free vegetarian sauces, they gladly stir-fry your veggies without oil, and give you brown rice. It couldn't have been better! PS: Hated this movie. "I Am Love" the newest Italian movie with Tilda Swinton.
4th of July Dinner. Les & Tess said, "Come on over for dinner. We'll grill up a bunch of veggies. You'll find something to eat." I wanted to try out a fat-free version of Rebecca Katz' (One Bite at a Time) Veggie "Ricotta" Lasagna with Caramelized Onions, Garlicky Kale, & Roasted Tomato Sauce.
So I asked Tess, "Would you like me to bring this lasagna I'm going to try out? And how about some sangria?"
Tess was more than happy for me to bring lasagna & sangria, because they were starting to get a little nervous about what exactly they could make--that would pass muster for my Dr. Esselstyn-diet-trial. Here's what I happily ate as a dinner guest on the Fourth of July:
- Grilled corn
- Grilled eggplant & zucchini brushed with no-oil teriyaki
- Grilled pineapple
- Fresh fruit
- Veggie "Ricotta" Lasagna
- Fruit-sweetened popsicle for dessert
The July 5th Road Trip Picnic. Within 15 minutes I made up a batch of spicy teriyaki low-fat tempeh. Chopped some cabbage & tossed it with a mirin/rice vinegar/soy dressing for some slaw. Here's what we packed in a cooler for our picnic lunch.
- Spicy teriyaki tempeh stuffed into Alvarado Street Bakery Hot Dog Buns, to be later topped with slaw, and a dollop of roasted red pepper hummus
- Roasted curried cauliflower & carrots with roasted red pepper hummus dip
- Cherries & plums
The Numbers Tell the Whole Story
Curiosity got the better of me last night. I wanted to see exactly how this diet was stacking up in the nutrient department. I have access to a program (MyFoodDiary) that measures fat, carbs, protein, calories, sodium, vitamin A, vitamin C, fiber, calcium, iron, and cholesterol. I entered in everything I ate yesterday, recipes included, and checked it out! Numbers don't lie.
Wondering if I'm getting enough fat?
Wondering if I'm getting enough calories?
Wondering if I'm getting enough protein?
Wondering if I'm getting enough nutrients?
Wondering if my salt intake has been reduced?
Check it out!
Note: I didn't exercise yesterday. If I had, I would have probably eaten more because my body would have needed more--and I would have naturally been hungrier.
What am I missing without added oil, nuts, and sugary desserts?
- Room for all the nutrient-dense fruits & veggies I've been eating. An appetite for fruits & veggies, because the salty, fatty, creamy stuff is now "off the list".
- At least 280 calories & 28 grams of fat from the 2 TBS. of olive oil I would have used for cooking or as salad dressing
- 230 calories & 13 grams of fat from my daily Cashew Cookie Larabar
- 240 calories & 10 grams of fat from 1 Field Roast Smoked Apple Sage sausage--for example.
- And who knows what else if I added in some avocado, a handful of nuts, some vegan Daiya cheese, some vegan mayonnaise, dried dates, super dark chocolate, etc.
How My Diet Stacked Up Yesterday
Fat: 19.6 grams without an even a teaspoon of added oil
Sodium: 1091 mg--well below the latest recommendations
Vitamin A: 2,069% of what's recommended
Vitamin C: 557% of what's recommended
Protein: 56.7 grams--completely adequate If you didn't read Gretchen Reynolds' New York Times article last week about women, exercise, carbohydrates, and protein, be sure to check it out. Click here for "Phys. Ed. What Exercise Science Doesn't Know About Women" Hint: Carbs trump protein.
Calcium: 676 mg (add in my daily dose of Citracal & I meet everyone's recommendations for calcium)
Percentage of Calories 1
|Calories Remaining to ...|
|Lose 0.6 lbs. per week (maximum safe)|
Monday, July 5, 2010
|At a glance ...|
|A high-fiber breakfast can help you lose weight and reduce your risk for heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.|
|You have eaten fiber-rich foods. This is a good indicator of a healthy diet.|
|Saturated fats only accounted for .07% of your calories. Good job staying below the 9% limit!|
|You consumed 417.9 mg of vitamin C. This is 557% of the recommended daily value (75 mg) for adult women.|
|You consumed 62077 IU of vitamin A. This is 2,069% of the recommended daily value for women.|
|Only 12% of your calories came from fat. Fat should account for a minimum of 15% of your calories.|