“Cheesy” Kale Recipe


CheesyKale

“Cheesy” Kale

I have been trying to love kale but, until today, our relationship has been quite rocky. This near-perfect veggie just doesn’t have a flavor that hides in smoothies as well as spinach. In all fairness, I really haven’t given kale a chance. I haven’t tried it in any of my favorite soup recipes and I haven’t put it in my salad. So, what have I done with kale, you may be asking. I threw a handful in my smoothie and thought it tasted awful. That’s it!

I came across this recipe for “Cheesy” Kale on The Earth Diet website a couple of weeks ago and thought I would give kale another chance. I am really glad I did!

I started with a bunch of kale, removed the leaves from the stem, rinsed it, and dried it. I sprayed a large cookie sheet with olive oil, laid out the kale, and lightly sprayed olive oil on the kale. Then, I sprinkled the kale with Premier pink sea salt and Bragg”s nutritional yeast and baked it in a 350-degree oven for 15 minutes. It came out light, crispy, salty, and cheesy!

This was a delicious and healthy snack and it went very well with my iced mint tea. I will definitely be making this recipe again!

Here are some links for you:

Nutritional information about Kale

The Earth Diet website. The picture of “cheesy” kale is much more appetizing on this site!

Where to purchase Premier Pink Salt. We buy it locally at Dr. Ray’s office.  He is Harry’s NutriMost doctor.

Where to purchase Bragg’s Nutritional Yeast.

Recipe – Grilled Turnips


Grilled Turnips and Turkey Kielbasa

Grilled Turnips and Turkey Kielbasa

Turnips are our new passion!

Before NutriMost, our vegetables of choice were corn (preferably buttered) and green beans (preferably the Thanksgiving casserole way) and, for most meals, even those vegetables were omitted. These days, however, we love trying new vegetables and we especially like experimenting with new ways to cook them. Who knew that turnips would become one of our favorite vegetables? I can’t believe how versatile they are!

Because of Harry’s diabetes, we avoid all potatoes. Turnips have been our go-to veggie when we are looking for a potato-like side. We have mashed them, made “home fries” from them, french-fried them, and grilled them. Over the weekend we even put them in the crock pot with our roast and carrots.  Yum!

Grilling turnips is super simple!  Harry slices them (not simple) and I brush a little olive oil on them and put them on the grill (the super simple part!). For the grilled turnips in this pic, we used our George Foreman grill. One word of caution with using the Foreman, however, is to slice the turnips in even widths otherwise the top of the grill only rests on the thickest slice. We plan to use the outdoor grill for our grilled turnips as soon as this weather breaks.

If you have a favorite turnip recipe, please share!

NutriMost note:  If you are within the first 40 days of the program, turnips are not on your list of acceptable veggies. Also, the turkey kielbasa in the pic does not fall within the list of acceptable meats. Save this recipe, though. You’re gonna love it when you enter the maintenance phase!

Peek Into Our Cupboard


When we first started on the NutriMost program, we went through our cupboard and threw out everything that we were not permitted to use during our first 40 days. It seemed like such a waste to throw away flour, sugar, chocolate chips, nuts, boxed mac and cheese, and so much more. But, in hindsight, we understand that eating those items would have been the bigger waste.

Here is what we put into our cupboard during our first 40 days on NutriMost:

Braggs Aminos – this product tastes like soy sauce but without the salt. It is wonderful on stir-fry veggies!

Stevia – a natural sugar substitute. The only sugar we eat!

Vinegar – for making salad dressings We purchased a variety of vinegars but made sure none of the ones we purchased contained sugar. Some do!

Seasonings – for making food flavorful. We have a wide variety of seasonings and enjoy experimenting with them!

Pink Sea Salt – we still buy this salt from Dr. Ray because we haven’t found a brand we like better in any stores!

Xanthan Gum – a thickening agent. We used this product when making salad dressings.  A quarter of a teaspoon in the blender, along with vinegar, water, spices, and a little Stevia, makes a very yummy dressing for any vegetable medley!

Herbal Teas – my drink of choice even today. I add a teabag and a packet of Stevia to my water bottle several times throughout the day.

 

Here are a few items that we added to our cupboard after the initial 40 days:

Coconut Oil – substitute for butter

Olive Oil – our “go-to” oil

Nuts – we love to add them to stir fry dishes!

Flax Seeds – Harry uses these in his little healthy, yet “to-die-for,” dessert balls. We’ll be sure and get this recipe posted real soon!

We do have a few canned items in our cupboard; tuna fish, tomato puree, tomato sauce, and tomato paste.  All canned tomato items are salt-free, of course! While you’re at it, you may as well take a peek into our fridge!  Behind all the veggies you will find Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk (we use this for our smoothies), lean meats, homemade ketchup, and eggs

I hope you enjoyed peeking! Let us know if you have any questions about the items we mentioned. Thanks, Jane and Harry (still on our Storm Journey!)

NutriMost… Our Perspective!


Jane after 57-pounds lost.

Jane after 57-pounds lost!

Last August, Harry and I visited Dr. Ray’s office in Ross Township, just north of Pittsburgh. Harry had heard Dr. Ray on a local radio show and was interested in looking into his NutriMost weight-loss program. The initial assessment was only $27, reduced from $99, so we figured we had little to lose.

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Harry after 35-pounds lost!

As anyone who has read this blog knows, Harry went on the NutriMost and had amazing results with the program. He lost 35 pounds in 40 days and is now at his goal weight. He is off all diabetes medications (he was diabetic for 25 years and was about to go on insulin) and has been maintaining his weight since November. I (Jane) did not pay to be on NutriMost but I did follow the meal plans for the first 40 days and beyond. As of today, I am down 57 pounds!

I am asked quite often about the cost of the NutriMost program. Harry paid $1,795 and it was worth every penny for two reasons:

– We probably would not have stuck to any diet on our own

– We definitely would not have known what and how much to eat

A coworker asked me one day, after noticing that I had lost more than a little weight, what she should give up eating in order to lose weight. She was hoping I could give her a list of “must-avoid” foods that, if she cut them out, she would miraculously get skinny. I didn’t know how to answer that question, at first, but then i said “everything.” The one thing we learned from the NutriMost program was that we didn’t know how to eat. Everything we were eating was contributing to our unhealthy lifestyles.

During the first 40 days on NutriMost, we ate 2 fruits, 2 vegetables, and 2 servings of meat per day. We only ate specific fruits, vegetables, and meats and never ate the same item two times in one day or two days in a row. We drank only water; lots of water. Today we still eat fruit, vegetables, and meat but we have more variety and we have developed dozens of new recipes to keep our meals and snacks interesting and very satisfying. The best thing about NutriMost is that it taught us how to eat for life!

Bring on the questions!

New Year Resolutions!


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When Harry and I began our journey to fight his diabetes and lose weight by eating healthier, we decided to start this blog.  Our plan was to document our progress, share recipes, and motivate others to start eating healthier.  WE FAILED!

We failed to document, share, and motivate through blogging but, in our goals to control Harry’s diabetes and lose weight, WE SUCCEEDED!!!

– Harry’s A1C dropped from 8.1 to 6.6!!!  His doctor reduced his diabetes medications to one pill at bedtime and took him off all of his blood pressure and cholesterol medications.

– Harry lost 35 pounds and is at his goal weight!

– As of today, I have lost 50 pounds!  I still have about 35 pounds that I would like to lose.

The StormJourney continues!  Our New Year resolutions are blog, blog, blog.  Please join us!!!

 

Weight Loss Update


Harry’s total weight loss after 33 days on his diet – 30 pounds!!!

Jane’s total weight loss – 20 pounds!!!

As you know, we began this diet in order to get Harry’s diabetes under control and the results have been tremendous.  He is now off of all diabetes medications and his blood sugar readings have been very close to normal.  As you can imagine, we are thrilled at his results!

Harry has been on the Nutri Most weight loss plan, which we highly recommend for anyone with diabetes.  Nutri Most advertises that participants will lose 20-40 pounds in 40 days and it has certainly delivered!  But what they don’t advertise, is the program’s ability to get diabetes under control.

I have not been on the Nutri Most plan because the cost is a bit restrictive.  I have wanted to lose weight for several years but doing it on my own was difficult.  Harry starting on Nutri Most was the perfect opportunity for me to have a diet buddy.  Dieting together has been much more bearable for us both.  I can’t imagine how either of us would have had so much success alone.

Harry is about finished losing weight.  In one week he will begin adding some items that he has not eaten in awhile to his diet that.  The goal that has been set for him is to maintain his weight; not gaining or losing more than two pounds.  This exercise is to reset his weight set point and teach him what he can and cannot eat.  In addition to watching his weight, he will continue monitoring his blood sugar levels to determine how certain foods affect his diabetes.  We can’t wait until his next A1C test in a little over two months.  We would love to see it come back at 5 point something!

We’ll keep you updated!!!

Green Machine


Naked Juice Quest

Is Naked Juice worth the cost?

GreenMachine

Green Machine

Naked Juice

After picking up a Green Machine at Starbucks last week, I came to the decision that this product was a miraculous find!  I was fairly sure, after watching the documentary Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, that juicing was the fast track to getting healthy.  Green Machine was green (therefore, healthy) and it tasted amazing.  Yes, I decided, I can definitely be a juicer.

I purchased my second Green Machine at Sheetz for right around $3, which was less than Starbuck’s price but still a bit pricy for my blood.  I was pretty sure that I could buy larger jugs of Green Machine at Wal-Mart for a cheaper price and I was right.  Only, Wal-Mart was completely sold out of Green Machine.  I started to panic but remembered that I could always buy it at Sheetz for around $3 per bottle.

Before resorting to Sheetz, I had Harry do a drive by at Shop ‘n Save.  Back in the juice aisle, I saw an older gentleman stocking shelves so I asked him if they caarried Naked Juice.  As soon as I asked the question I felt embarassed because of the look on the stockman’s face.  “I never heard of that!” he said.  I thanked him and walked up to the produce section where I found a display of Naked Juice.  Part of me wanted to go back and scold the man and tell him where to find Naked Juice in “his” store.  I wanted to point out that Naked Juice wasn’t naked people and that he should know about it because, obviously, it was a popular product since Wal-Mart was sold out of Green Machine.  But, after seeing that Shop ‘n Save’s prices were no better than Starbucks’, I simply walked out of the store.

I finally found my large-size Green Machine at Wal-Mart in a neighboring town  I almost bought two since there was obviously a shortage in my area but I was concerned about an expiration date so I limited myself to one.  After arriving at home, I conducted an Internet search on where to find the best price on Naked Juice.  What I found, instead, were several articles on the problems of Naked Juice.

–Too much sugar (even if it is natural)

–Processed, not fresh

–Low in vitamins and nutrients

–No fiber (even though it is a juice smoothie)

From my research on the difference between a juice and a smoothie, I learned that juice is a smoothie without the pulp.  Or, a smoothie is juice with the pulp.  “Juice smoothie” confuses me.  The critics pointed out that the only real way to get the benefits of juice was to make it yourself using fresh fruits and vegetables.

So, what am I going to do with this gigantic jug of Green Machine?  Drink it, of course!  It is green and it tastes amazing!

More articles on Naked Juice and Green Machine:

Naked Juice Won’t Help You Look Good Naked

Review: Naked Juice Green Machine All Natural Blended Juice Smoothie

Nutrition Info for Naked Juice – Green MachineIs

It Healthy? Naked Juice

Naked 100% Juice Smootie. Green Machine is Graded by Fooducate

Diabetes Update


Harry’s Diabetes – Has It Been Cured?

The blood-sugar-level data are in!

Harry has been on diabetic medications for more than 20 years but, after just four weeks on his diet, his blood sugar levels are very close to the normal range.  No medication!  Take a look:

blood sugars

To the left of the blue line, are Harry’s blood sugar levels before beginning his diet and while taking his diabetes medications.  The blue line represents the day he began his diet and went off of his medications.  Notice the low reading slightly to the right of the beginning of the diet?  This was the day that Harry received a call from his primary care physician’s office and was told he couldn’t be off of his medications.  He took his morning dosage, which included Metformin and Glipizide, and his blood sugar level dropped significantly.  That was all it took for Harry to decide that suspending his medications was the right thing to do.

The light blue area on the graph represents the normal range for blood sugar levels for people without diabetes.  Since going off of his medications, Harry’s readings have varied less and a greater number of readings are falling in the normal range.

This is huge!

Are we calling him cured?  Not yet, but we are very encouraged by these results!!!

We have another indication that Harry is on his way to being cured of diabetes.  Before the diet, Harry’s A1C was 8.1.  Just two weeks into the diet, he was retested and the result was 7.5.  This is also huge!

Green Smoothie… My Quest for Micronutrients


Green Smoothie

My first, and possibly last, attempt at juicing without a juicer.

Green Smoothie

Green Smoothie

After watching Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, I decided that I needed to become a juicer. I couldn’t see myself taking off 60, or even 10 days from work to totally detox by living off of juice alone. However, I did want the micronutrients of green veggies and I did think that I could replace one meal a day with Mean Green juice. The only hiccup in my plan was that my son had borrowed the juicer that my stepdaughter gave to us a couple of years ago. I was determined to not let my being temporarily without a juicer keep me from starting my new quest for a healthy lifestyle. I hit Pinterest in an attempt to find a blender-friendly healthy alternative to Mean Green. It didn’t take long for me to find a recipe, posted by a woman who claimed she had “an unhealthy addiction (if that is possible)” to green smoothies. I chopped up 4 stalks of celery and put them in the blender with a cup of water and two (maybe 3) handfuls of kale. These items totally filled my blender until I hit blend and watched the contents liquify. I was quite pleased with my new health-crazed self as I pealed and cut up 2 granny smith apples, an inch of ginger, and a cucumber. Bam! I threw these power foods into the green concoction in my blender and, once again, hit blend. It may have been that I forgot to add the juice of one lemon… but, my green smoothie came out thick, fibrous, and almost tasteless. I say “almost” tasteless because I did detect a hint of something I describe as woodsy. I have never eaten tree bark but I believe I now know how it tastes. Needless to say, I couldn’t ingest more than a few sips (bites). Fiber must not be my thing. I will probably give the Mean Green recipe another shot since I recently repossessed my juicer.  I am not expecting the juice to taste any better because it is in liquid form or because it will include the missing lemon juice. As a matter of fact, I envision it will be woodsy and sour!  But, there will be much less juice than there was smoothie so I should be able to knock it back quickly.  One way or another, those micronutrients are going to be mine!  Joe will be proud.

Tonight’s Dinner – Our Favorite Recipe… Cabbagetti


This is one of our favorite recipes.  If you love Italian food and aren’t opposed to cabbage, you must try it!!!  (all of our recipes feed two people so adjust accordingly).

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CABBAGETTI

7 ounces very lean ground beef, buffalo, chicken, or venison
1 cup onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, diced
Pink salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, oregano, basil, and Stevia to taste
14-ounce can no-salt diced tomatoes
16-ounce can no-salt tomato sauce
2 teaspoons tomato paste
1 medium cabbage, shredded
1/4 cup low sodium broth (chicken, beef, or vegetable)

Put meat in saucepan with onion, garlic, and spices.  Cook until meat is done and onions are soft.  Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and tomato paste.  Simmer while cabbage is cooking.

Put broth in large, no-stick pan (we use a wok) and add shredded cabbage.  Cook until desired tenderness.  Feel free to spice up the cabbage while cooking.  Harry likes to add garlic, pink salt, and Braggs aminos.

Place 1/2 of the cabbage on each plate and top with sauce.

Enjoy!

(I will talk about the benefits of pink salt and Stevia in a future post!)