Into Week 3!

So here I am, third week in to my 30 day FODMAP challenge and it’s been going great!  I have found it pretty easy to make some massive eliminations from my diet and have actually really gotten into meal planning and trying out new and exciting things, like yogurt-making!  For the most part, I think my energy levels are better and even my attitude has been up (most days). I’m able to think more clearly about what my future is going to look like in the next year, which is a personal issue I’ve been struggling with a lot lately.  My stomach is definitely better, which is really all that I’m asking for.  I have found giving up gluten really easy and probably the only thing that I’ve needed a few mini cheats has been chocolate.  Probably my next mini cheat would be a fun cocktail, kind of have missed a little alcohol here and there 🙂

The only kind of weird thing is that I have felt like my appetite has been HUGE, I’m just super hungry all the time!  And not even with specific cravings, like I am missing sugar or something, just that I’m starving and need to eat.  A friend asked if I was weighing myself through this and I said no because that wasn’t the point, but since I feel like I’ve been eating more I did want to make sure I haven’t GAINED weight lol!  That certainly wouldn’t be my intention either!!  So far I’m normal, so I guess that’s good.  Would have been nice to see a pound or two loss from removing gluten and most sugar, though!

Despite having class this weekend, I still made some time to try a few new foods, including using my homemade yogurt to make Greek yogurt!  It was easy, I just put it in the cheesecloth that came with and hung it over the sink overnight.  It was very thick, so I think next time I wouldn’t hang it for quite so long.  I used it to make these Pumpkin Oat n’ Honey muffins.  I used 1/4 cup of maple syrup and a 1/4 dextrose instead of honey and added chopped pecans and shredded coconut.  Oh and use a food processor, not a blender, my blender definitely did not work for this!

GF pumpkin oat-yogurt muffins

GF pumpkin oat-yogurt muffins

Next up, I made these yummy looking Oatmeal Pumpkin Pie bars!  I haven’t had a chance to try one yet because the recipe said they were best after sitting overnight in the fridge.  I plan to freeze some since it made a 13X9 pan.  Adjustments I made included using the GF flour mix I bought instead of spelt flour, I used more pumpkin instead of applesauce, dextrose instead of coconut sugar, and milled chia instead of flaxmeal.  Oh and I sprinkled some shredded coconut on top!

oatmeal pumpkin pie bars

oatmeal pumpkin pie bars

I also made another round of the Baked Carrot Cake Oatmeal because it was so yummy!  The main change I made was that I blended fresh spinach with the coconut milk, so it’s a lovely shade of green this time lol!  I just missed knowing that I was getting some veggies in the morning since I usually add spinach to my smoothies, so I thought this would be a way to add it to my oatmeal.  Turned out good, does taste a little “greener” but not terribly.

And finally I made up burgers inspired by these Paleo Sun-dried Tomato & Spinach Burgers and homemade ketchup.  The burgers are a funny story, I kind of went overboard on the spinach, so I ended up adding a half pound of ground turkey.  They still just seemed boring, per the recipe, so I decided to spunk them up with some garlic-infused olive oil, coconut flour, grated cheddar cheese, and spices including smoked paprika, ground mustard, and tumeric.  Thankfully, despite my random additions, they turned out great, including husband approval!  For the ketchup, I followed the recipe pretty much exactly except that I warmed it on low on the stove (I didn’t think the brown sugar would blend properly otherwise) and added only a tiny bit of cayenne pepper.  Tasted great, though it makes a lot, so I hope I can use it up before it goes bad.

spinach & sun-dried tomato burgers

spinach & sun-dried tomato burgers

mm ketchup

mm ketchup

lotsa ketchup!

lotsa ketchup!

At the end of the weekend, I had to laugh at my recycling pile: FOUR cans of pumpkin and an entire container of oats!  That’s totally normal, right???  Guess all I can say is: I LOVE PUMPKIN AND OATS!  😀

pumpkin everywhere!

pumpkin everywhere!

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30 Day Challenge

Making a huge diet change can be really daunting, and as busy as I am, I haven’t had a lot of time to really think through how best to go about doing it.  I did it before when I eliminated those 10 items from my diet two years ago, but this will take a little more planning, especially since it will include excluding some fruits and veggies that I normally wouldn’t have worried about (*tear* mangoes).

I think the best way to start is going to be a 30 day challenge.  That is long enough that I should start to see some improvements, but not so long that I will feel overwhelmed.  My suspicion is that, if it seems to be working, I will be able to continue after 30 days.  But if I don’t feel better after 30 days, then I think it will be time to rethink things and try a different plan of attack, maybe even the SCD diet.

So, looking ahead to what I have coming up, I am thinking that the best time to start this challenge will be AFTER our family dinner next weekend, so that I can feel like I can still eat what everyone else is, one last time (for awhile).  I am still contemplating doing some sort of “cleanse” to get the diet started on the right foot, so I just need to decide what that will look like.  My guess is that would be best to do on a weekend (when if I’m zapped, I can nap :)), so tentatively, I’m putting my start date as March 15th.

Between now and then, I’m going to slowly start cutting out some of the foods when it’s not too much of a hassle.  So for example, I am going to try my best to stop eating crackers.  Bread.. well I might need a slice or two between now and then, but I don’t eat it too frequently.  I think it will mostly be about being more conscious of what I’m eating and making better decisions, knowing what could be potentially causing my issues.  Like, no more lentil soup!!  (bad experience with that this week eek.. anyone want some lentil soup that’s in my freezer??)

Okay, so tentative plans are set up!  Now just to tackle the details and get some meals planned out between now and March 15th.. I can do this!  Here’s to feeling better!