Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Veggie Tales: What I Learned This Month

Today I'm also blogging over at Imperfect Home where you can witness organization gone wild when I tackle how to organize meat. Yup, you heard me, MEAT. I also give away a great recipe for sweet potato cottage pie. And if that doesn't tempt you, Kristin's amazing ideas of working with small spaces and organizing a home with the ptitter patter of dirty feet surely will!

Last week I completed another meeting with my dietitian. I'm still not happy with the way the scale is going. But I do notice I am almost down an entire size of pants and my bathing suit fits significantly better. Also, my energy levels are AMAZING! Since I've cut out caffeine and focused on eating cleaner, I am finding I don't have that 3:00 crash I used to have.

Don't worry if you don't believe me, I didn't either until I experienced it.

Because she is looking to distract me from my uber-focus on the scale, this meeting we focused on two things: water and veggies.

The focus on water was brief. She had previously recommended I get 70 ounces of water because of how much I work out. You guys, I TRIED! I did. But as I put it to my very amused dietitian: "I'd have to quit my job." I told her the second I hit 60 ounces, I have to move in to the bathroom. So we agreed 60-64 would be sufficient. And not require that I usurp Wee 'Burb's potty chair for my office.

So the veggies. I struggle a bit to get the right amounts of fruits and veggies. Fruit I like to snack on. I have switched one snack a day to either apples with cheese or a smoothie. So fruit and I are simpatico.

Veggies? Well that's a bit tougher. I'm good at getting them in at dinner time as a side dish. But throughout the day, it's just not that exciting. So we discussed at least making half my dish (versus a quarter) veggies to at least get what I can in.

The benefit to doing this at dinner is also that it would reduce portions of other food. Filling up on veggies would mean less of whatever the main entree was, ultimately reducing calories.

I told her this would be simple pimple because we've been hitting the farmer's market lately. She asked what we get and I ruminated on the pretty zucchini and corn. I bragged about this sweet potato cottage pie I had made full of corn and peas. And she's kind of coughing and going "That's...great. Only those are starches, not really vegetables."

Mind? BLOWN!

I had been slipping corn and peas (frozen) into a ton of dishes recently. These are also starches. Add to that list any potato, parsnip, pumpkin and other assorted squash.

Now it's not that they're bad, necessarily. I mean a starch like these are better than pasta or bread. But still, a bit of a heartbreaker. Especially because Scott has been giving me the eye when I serve spinach of late, an expression that clearly says "We are going to review our marriage contract if you serve me wilted spinach with lemon juice ONE MORE TIME, Woman."

So because I haven't been doing well with weight loss goals, I'm switching it out and focusing on what I eat. This month's decision was made for me: we'll be focusing on veggies. Specifically, how to dress up the sides so we can eat non-starchy veggies and meet the recommended servings.

Do you love veggies? Did you know the difference between starches and veggies? How do you dress up your veg and still keep it healthy?


Clare Priest said...

Oh dear, I'm shattered now. I wish I hadn't read that about the veggies. I know about the sweet potato, but zucchini? Really? Surely if it's green it's good for you and it's full of water, which can't be bad either? And peas????? Peas are full of vitamins and goodness?!

So, what veggies are good for you?

Really, I just give up! KFC for tea I think!!

Erica@PLRH said...

I struggle with veggies too. I really can't stand cooked veggies. So I eat lots of salads to get in the leafy greens. We also keep a container of cut up raw broccoli, cauliflower, carrots & celery in the frig for snacking. Hubby will eat them plain but I've got to dip mine in ranch dip made with fat-free Greek yogurt to get them down. Good luck!

Kristy said...

I too am now a believer in the right kinds of small amounts of food throughout the day to stay energized and lose weight. It does work. I have made some changes since January. Here are some things I do that work great, but takes some commitment (I have lost almost 30 pounds): Every weekend I buy either broccoli or cauliflower or brussel sprouts or green beans. I steam whatever my "veggie of the week" is and put them in individual servings in the fridge. I squirt a small amount of lemon juice on them and put seasoning on them (salt, pepper, or whatever you like). Then, for each lunch everyday, I grab one of those and eat one with my lunch. If you have a soup or some kind of lunch with some sauce on it, you can just dump the veggie into what you're eating. Another great idea - when making noodles/pasta and you are cutting down on portions, make just a small amount of noodles and add in slices (use a vegetable peeler) of squash in with the noodles to increase the volume without as much noodle. For every single dinner, I have a side salad - full of green leaf lettuces and spinach with very low cal dressings. Talk about veggies! My son teases me that all I eat are "plants."

Rach (DonutsMama) said...

Yeah, I learned about corn and peas a while back and was shocked/saddened to hear the news. I felt betrayed. We eat so much broccoli & carrots now it's crazy. But you know what's good? Tomatoes--esp the cherry tomatoes. You can put them in pasta, salads, sandwiches. I like putting garlic powder or lemon pepper on veggies too for a little flavor kick. It's hard to be creative sometimes.

KLZ said...

I knew that about SOME of those veggies - but not the peas! Booo!!

So here's a secret: brussel sprouts are reall good if you roast them with some olive oil and salt and pepper. Same for asparagus. They're my go-tos. Well, them and peas which apparently don't count.

Brooke said...

I hate vegetables. My main source of green veggies is salad as a side dish. I used to be ashamed of this fact but no more. Not everyone can love them....especially me.

Hungrigyrl said...

Good job! Eating more veggies is a good thing. I did know about the starchy veggies, I have to be watchful of those because the frozen peas and corn are what my children favor. There are a lot of veggies you can saute in a small amount of olive oil and garlic (such as spinach, kale, broccoli)...something to add a little variety. :)

Hungrigyrl said...

I forgot to also mention red, green and orange peppers too. said...

If I'm in a summer salad phase, then more veggies get consumed at lunch, but otherwise I'm a dinnertime kind of girl like yourself.

That being said, I did know about starches v. veggies but only because a friend told me a couple of years ago.

As for eating green things...basically if I'm not in the mood to eat something, I roast the crap out of it and then I do eat it.

Also, with Kristy, I've definitely done the steam for the week trick. It makes eating them mindless and easy, which is exactly what's necessary to get things going. Plus steaming is such a non-flavor that you can add them to anything.

Amanda @ It's Blogworthy said...

I don't enjoy veggies in the least....tell me, what IS a veggie then? I always considered corn a veggie. My mind is blown, too.

sweetteaviolist said...

I have a love/hate relationship with veggies...I love to hate them. Ok, not all of them. But most of them? Ugh. A lot of times it's a texture thing for me. I HATE the squishy-ness of peas, the way broccoli feels in my mouth, the sliminess of cooked spinach.

Raw, yes. Cooked? No.