I have been on every diet imaginable so I have a little bit of experience in this area....Want to eliminate carbs? Surprise, you are cutting calories. Going low-fat? Automatically cuts calories. Some fad diets will help you shed some pounds quickly, its true. Think about it...have you ever met someone who lost weight on the Atkin's diet and is still maintaining that weight loss? Me neither!
My ideal diet includes all foods and limits calories. Mostly, this is because I LOVE food. I like cooking it, shopping for it, reading about it and most of all eating it. Trust me, I love decadent, calorie laden foods as much as anyone (maybe more). The truth is, though, I don't feel good when I fuel my body with those low nutrient foods all of the time. I've decided they taste even more delicious when saved for occasional treats anyway :).
Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and healthy fats are the foundation of my healthy diet. They give me energy and improve my mood. Plus, they are lower in calories than most processed foods so I can enjoy larger quantities! I am trying to "clean up" my diet, meaning I want to enjoy more natural foods and limit artificial colorings, flavorings, preservatives, chemicals, etc. I'm not exactly sure what impact those additives have on the body, but it can't be good, right?
How do I know how many calories I am consuming? Two things.
1. Weigh and measure foods
2. Write it ALL down
I hope to someday abandon calorie counting and eat intuitively (that is, eat when I'm hungry and stop when I'm full) but for right now, calorie counting is where its at. To do this, I use the Calorie King online food and exercise diary. I am a huge fan! I enter the food and the quantity and this website does the rest. I can track protein, carbohydrates, fat, fiber, sodium and other nutritients to make sure I am keeping it balanced.
Enough about that for now. On to the fun part: Healthy Carrot Cake Power Scuffins! I will typically share recipes as I make them, but I discovered this one about a week ago (before starting my blog).
A scuffin is a hybrid between a cookie, scone and muffin. Sounds good, right? I thought so. I followed the recipe exactly and I'm glad I did!
Healthy Carrot Cake Power Scuffins
(by Angela, Oh She Glows)
1 cup whole grain spelt flour
1/2 tsp baking power
1/4 tsp fine grain sea salt
1.5 tsp pumpkin pie spice
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Chia/flax egg: 1 tbsp ground chia seeds + 3 tbsp water OR 1 tbsp ground flax + 3 tbsp water, mixed and set aside for 5 mins
1/2 cup regular oats
1 cup shredded or grated carrots (approx 2 medium)
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup toasted, chopped walnuts
Coconut, for garnish
Preheat oven to 350F. In a small bowl, mix the chia/flax egg and set aside. In a large bowl whisk together all of the dry ingredients. Using a food processor or grater, process/grate the carrots. In a medium bowl mix together the wet ingredients (carrots, vanilla, oil, maple syrup, chia/flax egg). Add wet to dry and mix until just incorporated. Stir in the walnuts and raisins. Scoop mixture onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or greased with oil. Scoop about 1/4 cup each to make 6 large scuffins. Wet hands and shape into a circle if desired. Sprinkle with coconut. Bake for 25 minutes at 350F.
Ohh so good. It was hard to stop at just one...
...but I did. :)
Question: What's your food philosophy?