Category Archives: Vegetarian

Healthy Breakfast Quinoa

This morning I woke up and realized I only had a tiny, tiny amount of oatmeal left. Since I’ve been trying to eat mostly vegan lately, I didn’t want to eat yogurt or eggs for breakfast, so I thought I’d get a little creative and use inspiration from many recipes I’ve seen to create my own breakfast quinoa.

The result was actually amazing! I can’t wait to try this again tomorrow morning.

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Since I rarely use real recipes and I just make things up as I go, here I’ll try to describe my process, in case you want to recreate it (which you should, because this was SO good).

Ingredients:

Quinoa

Almond Milk

Raisins

Dried Apricots (or any dried or fresh fruit)

Cinnamon

Honey

Almonds (or walnuts)

I already had quinoa pre-made from last night, but if you don’t, you can start from scratch, which might actually be better. (I’ll be trying that tomorrow.) Mine was a quinoa-bulgur wheat mix, but I recommend just straight quinoa. I had… a normal serving size? About a cup? Not really sure. You can be more precise if you want.

I put it in a little sauce pan, turned the heat on low, and poured in some almond milk (but not too much at first). I tossed in some raisins, and a small amount of honey and cinnamon and some sliced dried apricots (though you can use whatever fresh or dried fruit you desire). I mixed it all together and kept adding almond milk until it was a consistency that looked good to me (I didn’t want it to be too watery but you can make it as watery or dry as you’d like). At the end, I chopped up some almonds (if you have slivered almonds, or shelled walnuts, even better so you don’t have to deal with cutting whole almonds) and tossed them in, and gave it a little taste test to see what I thought. YUM.

Since I had a tiny bit of oatmeal, I cooked that and mixed both together, and the result was a delicious, sweet, healthy, protein-filled, fiber-filled, nutrient-dense breakfast to start my day. Seriously this might be my new favorite thing. Dare I say… better than oatmeal??

TRY IT. I dare you.

Here are some suggestions for things to add, though the beauty of this is that you pretty much can just do whatever you want and it will most likely be amazing.

– Fresh blueberries

– Fresh strawberries

– Almond butter

– Avocados

– Maple syrup

– Peaches

– Mashed banana

– Protein powder

– Chocolate chips

– Greek yogurt

… The list can go on as far as you’d like. Just some ideas to get you started.

Seriously this is my new favorite discovery. Can’t wait for tomorrow!

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Grocery Shopping

As I mentioned yesterday, I went to two grocery stores yesterday and spent half of my weekly allowance on food that I shouldn’t even need to buy. But, its not likely that my host family will be buying tempeh and almond butter, so I’ve been taking matters into my own hands (aka broke-ass wallet) for the past few months and buying myself things that I want/need.

I went to Monoprix, the big “normal” grocery store, and bought whatever didn’t need to be bought at Naturalia, the organic, healthy store. I came home feeling like Santa, excitedly arranging all of my food on my tiny table in the corner of the room, and proudly taking pictures, just for YOU.

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Featured on my list of healthy items:

– Oatmeal

– Quinoa

– Nuts

– Thin Brown Rice Cakes

– Sun Warrior Protein Powder

– Organic Whole Wheat bread

– Fruit (apples, bananas, avocados, tomatoes)

– Vegetables (sweet potatoes, canned chickpeas, spinach)

– Tahini sauce

– Almond butter (I caved in…)

– Tempeh

– Soy Yogurt

– Almond Milk

 

This is a very limited list. But these are my staples, and knowing that I have these in the house, I feel prepared and ready to eat healthy and clean for the rest of the week. Dinner times I know will always be a challenge, but I’m learning slowly that it is okay to make my own dinner and eat that instead. It takes a bit of courage (I’m shy and I feel the need to be respectful) but ultimately, it tends to work out okay when I give it a shot. But at least for the other meals of the day when I’m on my own, I don’t have any excuse now to not eat right. My challenge is to avoid all the other temptations around the house, and trust me, there are plenty.

Oh yeah, also my challenge is to not finish the enormous jar of almond butter by the end of this week. Because my brain does not understand “all things in moderation” or “portion control” or “STOP god damnit!” when almond butter is in front of me. I knew I shouldn’t buy it, but again… brain shut off, hand grabbed jar, wallet paid, and oops now its here.

Im TRYING, okay!?

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Vegan day 2… and Oops, I got Instagram

Another accidental vegan day, and it feels oh so good. I know I had a shitty day yesterday, but I refused to let it haunt me today, so this morning I reminded myself of how crappy it felt to lose myself, and I set my intentions for the day: stronger than yesterday.

I didn’t do much in the way of exercise (I rationalized it as being my rest day before my race tomorrow), but I did stay on track of my food, and it wasn’t even hard and didn’t require too much thought or effort at all! Its amazing how being vegan for a day feels so effortless, and the days when I do consume animal products, at least in this past week, have been the days when I’ve felt most out of control. Not eating animals or animal products and thus having a whole foods, plant-based diet is amazingly liberating. It fits in with this post about being “free” from certain foods/behaviors, or saying “I don’t” instead of “I cant”. Once I tell myself “I’m free from consuming animals” or “I don’t eat dairy”, I don’t feel the same urge to cave in, give up, and eat a piece of ham or a yogurt. Instead I just use what I have and get a little creative, and it ends up tasting SO much more gourmet than a nasty ham sandwich or plain yogurt with sugar.

I didn’t plan on being vegan today. I haven’t really been trying to be vegan at all over the past few days/weeks. But it just ends up happening rather accidentally, because I don’t eat red meat (unless my host mom makes it) and I don’t drink milk (gives me a stomach ache) and rarely eat cheese (amazingly, I’ve never really liked it), and my host family never seems to have chicken or fish stocked up and ready to cook (only pork products, like lardons or ham), so I almost have no choice but to be vegan, or mostly vegan plus the occasional yogurt (which I still love). So really, it hasn’t been all that hard to have entirely vegan days – if I happen to make my own dinner that night, its really quite easy!

And like I said on Wednesday, I feel absolutely liberated by my food. I don’t feel out of control, I feel happy, I feel clean and healthy and light, I have energy, and I feel well fed. I’ve gotten all my nutrients, all of my protein, all of my vitamins and minerals… and no cholesterol, no saturated fat, and no guilt (of any kind). Its kind of amazing. I’m all about this!

Also… Um, yeah, I got Instagram. For this blog. I don’t have a personal one yet and I’ve been resisting for ages (this is a matter of pride, as a photographer)… but I did it. I caved. So, follow me on Instagram… “strongfitswell“. Duh. Also I have no idea how to use it so give me some time before I figure out how to follow you back.

So without further ado…my Instagrammed meals:

photo 2A surprise treat – passion fruit!

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Lunch was chickpeas, white beans, avocado, tomatoes, pine nuts, sesame seeds, olive oil. So good!

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Dinner consisted of quinoa with sautéed zucchini and onions, along with,

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… an open-faced “sandwich” – toasted whole wheat bread, spread avocados, tomatoes.

Breakfast was my usual oatmeal with protein powder, and snacks throughout the day were mixed nuts, prunes, and lots of fruit. I drank a TON of water (to be hydrated for my race tomorrow) and I got plenty of rest last night. I hope tonight I can get some good rest too.

I’m feeling so good right now. I hope tomorrow’s race goes well (though its supposed to rain!) and I hope the rest of this weekend can be somewhat as good as today and wednesday. I feel fabulous.

Oh also, I watched this informational video today (its about an hour long) about eating a whole foods, plant-based diet, and though it was a little cheesy at times, I actually really loved it and gained a lot of useful information and tips about developing a cleaner, healthier lifestyle. You should watch this!

I’m posting part 1 here, but there are 9 parts total, all easily available one after the other on YouTube.

 

I hope everyone has had a great day!

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Avoiding Starvation Choices

Last Saturday in Paris after a morning work event, I found myself hungry for lunch and totally unprepared. Normally, because I live in a ridiculous perpetual fear of starvation, I have at least 457 snacks in my huge purse, just in case! Because you never know when you’re going to get lost and somehow find yourself in a forrest or deserted island, starving and ready to eat your own hand in order to stay alive. (Not even kidding, these are the thoughts that go through my head every day before leaving the house. “Is there any chance of starvation today due to fantastical and unprecedented occurrences?” The answer is always yes.) So, you will always find a bag of almonds in my purse, a piece of fruit (or three), and a healthy food bar of some type (generally I prefer ones with minimal, raw ingredients, like KIND Bars orLärabar, because I try to eat as raw and as close to nature as possible. Food bars should all have ingredients you recognize and can pronounce, and you should ideally be able to easily recreate them at home. There are plenty of recipes online for homemade Lärabars). However, this particular Saturday, I left the house in a hurry and forgot to bring any food with me, and of course, it was 2pm and I hadn’t eaten since 8am and I was ravenous and near the point of starvation-panic.

I passed a number of bakeries and my nose turned to mush when the smell of fresh croissants and baguettes trickled its way into my system. Mmm, butter, I thought to myself, and paused a few times, desperate and starving, considering buying myself “just something small”. But I snapped out of it and reminded myself that this was just my actual biological starvation mechanism being activated (everyone just relax, I know what I’m talking about… I took an anthropology class once in college), as my body began to crave the most simple and necessary nutrition for survival: sugar and fat. I was aware of this and I forced myself to use my highly complex brain system to step away from the bakeries

A while passed and I kept walking, indecisive, trying to figure out what to eat. I found a little shop and bought myself a banana to hold me over until I could get a real meal, and that banana saved the day, truly.

I considered going to a restaurant, but again, I’m broke so a grocery store had to be enough. Eventually I stumbled across a Naturalia, pretty much the only healthy, organic store in France, and I was saved!

I bought a lentil and tofu salad, a small whole wheat multigrain bread roll, a few dates, for “dessert”, and I sat myself down by the canal and enjoyed a picnic with me, myself, and I, and all the pigeons that wanted in on this fucking bomb meal of mine.

IMG_2903Chillin.

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Lentils, tofu, red onions, and a little secret ingredient that I no longer remember, but good lord this was so tasty.

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Cheers.

All for around 5 euros. If I tried ordering this at a restaurant, it would likely cost triple. And if I had made it at home, it probably would have cost half. Cheap, easy, so tasty, and so goddamn healthy, it almost hurts.

1 point for me. 0 points for poor health, cholesterol, muffin tops, heart attacks, cancer, and everything else evil in the world.

#winning.

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Paleo Carrot Cake Balls

Ok, that title is misleading. They would have been paleo, but I took some liberties with the recipe and added a little bit of oatmeal, so the ones I made are not actually paleo. But if you want to make them yourself and you want them to be paleo, just don’t add the oatmeal. Duh.

(If you don’t know what paleo is, it’s basically eating like hunter-gatherers used to eat, before the advent of agriculture. Essentially, it is meat + fruits/vegetables, no dairy, carbs (like bread, etc), sugars, etc.)

I got the idea to make something carrot-cake-y because there were a ton of shredded carrots in the fridge and I wanted to put them to good use. So I went on my Pinterest and looked at a few carrot recipes and I decided to make paleo carrot cake balls when I examined the ingredients and realized that everything was available in my house and the recipe was simple. That’s how I roll… I ain’t about to make an effort. Shiet.

These make an excellent pre or post workout snack, they provide plenty of healthy fats and protein and all-natural sugars, so when you’re craving something sweet but don’t want to completely destroy your diet/body, make these instead. They’re delicious and so healthy.

After dinner, I offered some for dessert to my host family and to my great pleasure, they loved them and they loved that they were a healthier version of dessert. I’m hoping to keep making little things like this that I can share with them so that I can better introduce my need for a healthier diet into our daily lives here. Baby steps. This was a good way to get things going and I feel proud of this small accomplishment. I wonder what I’ll make next??

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Soooo anyway, I’m going to wing this next part… the recipe.

I loosely based my balls (… pause, reflect on that phrase… and continue… because you are more mature than me…) on this paleo carrot cake balls recipe from Sweet Pea Sylvie but as soon as I realized that measurements don’t really matter and that these are basically just a big mixture of delicious items, I started taking liberties and ended up with my own little version (thats also how I ended up making them not paleo, but you can just ignore that part if you’re super paleo-y). For the sake of showing you how to make them, I’ll try to make a recipe out of what I did, but in all honesty, you can pretty much eyeball everything… you literally cannot fuck these up even if you tried.

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MY ABSURD PALEO CARROT CAKE BALL RECIPE (… with commentary)

3/4 cup almond flour (If you want to make this yourself, you can just grind almonds in your food processor until they are powdery. Or so I hear, I’ve never actually tried this.)

6-8 pitted dates, cut into pieces… Recipe calls for 5, but I’m giving you some leeway here because I know you’re going to eat a few of them, obv.

4-6 dried apricots, cut into pieces

1/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut 

A bunch of shredded carrots (Okay, proper measurement says 2 cups, but really, who gives a fuck. They’re your balls and you do what you want to them. Amirite??)

1/2 tbsp cinnamon (Seriously, I have never measured cinnamon in my life and I tend to think people that do measure it are entirely deranged. Its cinnamon, people! The Lord’s gift to us. Get crazy. Take your top off!)

A pinch of ground ginger (I don’t know why I added that, but I did, and you will too if you’re following this ridiculous recipe. This is essentially me playing in the kitchen and trying to act scholarly about it.)

2-4 tbsp coconut milk (oops… I just realized I put way more than that, which is probably why my balls came out really moist. Whatever, they’re delicious!)

A handful of raisins (Again, who ever measures raisins. The more the merrier.)

6-8 almonds, chopped into small pieces

Here’s the non-paleo [optional] part: 1/4 – 1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal (I didn’t measure this, but this is another dumb estimate)

Instructions: Put it in a food processor. Thats it.

Okay, really, here’s what I did, kind of…

  • Pit and chop dates and apricots.

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  • Mix the dates, apricots, and shredded coconut in a food processor until a smooth paste is formed.
  • Add almond flour, oatmeal, carrots, and spices and mix well.

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  • Add coconut milk and blend until desired consistency is reached.

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  • Remove and put dough in a separate bowl, and gently fold in raisins and almond pieces.

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  • Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Once cool, form into balls, roll in a bowl of shredded coconut, and store in freezer or refrigerator as desired.

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  • Try to not eat them all in one sitting. I dare you. Whoever said “guilt free” was full of shit.

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*******

Recipe brought to you by Strong Fits Well. Thats me, bitches. And if you try my recipe and think its shit, then 2 things: 1) you’re full of shit because its delicious, and 2) not my problem.

ENJOY! ❤

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Raspberry Banana Oatmeal Protein Smoothie

No almond butter? No peanut butter? What am I supposed to do with myself for an afternoon snack?!?!

I was hungry and I knew that dinner tonight will be soup, and I know that this soup contains probably very little healthy protein (mostly vegetables and heavy cream), so I wanted to get some protein in before dinner so I wouldn’t feel nutrient-deprived later, so….

I experimented with a few different ingredients to make a Raspberry-Banana-Oatmeal Protein Smoothie, and it was glorious!

The raspberries were a lucky find… I did some digging in the freezer because I knew a while ago my host mom had some frozen raspberries for one of her amazing desserts, and I wondered if there might still be some. To my delight, there were! So I tossed some of those in with half a banana (the bananas were huge), some almond milk, a scoop of protein powder, oatmeal, and cinnamon and blended that shit uppppp.

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Raspberry Banana Protein Smoothie

3/4 cup raspberries

1/2 large banana

1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal

1 scoop protein powder

3/4 – 1 cup almond milk

Sprinkle of cinnamon

** Blend in blender. Drink. Make this face:

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Lunch Time Improv

Most of the time, I’m just working with whatever is available in my house. I don’t have control over groceries so I usually just make whatever is as lean and clean and raw and healthy as possible, using the limited ingredients I have in my host family’s kitchen. The fridge usually is full of all sorts of dairy products (cheese, creme fraiche, sugary yogurts, etc) and red meat (usually different types of pork, like ham or lardons) so that moment when I open the fridge is usually a little disheartening. However, they tend to have carrots and zucchini always on hand, so whether I like it or not, I usually end up eating carrots and zucchini almost every day. As this post and maybe the next few will illustrate, my meals usually revolve around those items, sometimes with a little more variety depending on what I find that day. As for the other parts of my meal, if its available, I will make quinoa (a complete protein) and basically eat that plus veggies nearly every day for lunch. Or, if I’m feeling crazy, I’ll make egg whites with veggies. WATCH OUT.

It’s not exactly an exciting way to eat, but its better than having a heart attack in 30 years, right? And its also better than having pants that don’t fit right now. Anyway, food is fuel and thats it. Plain and simple.

I got lucky the other day and found some lentils, so I ate this lean little meal, packed with protein (from the lentils) and all types of wonderful vitamins and minerals from the veggies. Not to shabby, and a nice way to change up my routine.

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Paired it with an apple, and I was full, full, FULL for hours.

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Eating clean really isn’t that hard as long as there is something clean to eat. And to be honest, this meal was probably dirt cheap too. Since I didn’t buy the ingredients myself, I can’t give exact numbers, but how much can lentils, carrots, zucchini, and an apple really cost? Yeah, probably nothing. Probably less than anything less healthy, thats for sure. So really, being healthy should save you money, and of course, you know, save your life.

I’m in. Are you?

 

 

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Stronger Than Yesterday

You know what happens when you set your intentions for the day, when you plan ahead, and when you find internal motivation to have a better day than yesterday? You fucking succeed! Or at least I do.

Today was SO much better than yesterday, oh my god! I went to bed earlier, woke up earlier, and went on my morning run as promised, and that was crucial in setting the tone for the rest of the day. I ate clean all day, I had energy, and I accomplished quite a number of things, with plenty of time to spare to talk to a few friends back home.

After my run, I had my usual oatmeal with protein powder which kept me full for hours and hours. I mixed it with my usual cinnamon and walnuts and I added apples today, just ‘cuz.

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For lunch, I had a minor moment of distress when I opened the fridge and felt discouraged and too lazy to cook. I really wanted to spend a minimal amount of effort on my meal and I almost settled for some poor choices, for sake of convenience (i.e. leftover French food, aka a heart attack), but I paused, took a deep breath, and decided to do a little hunting to see what I could make. Sometimes I start cooking and I don’t even know what it is that I’m making until halfway through the process, and today was one of those days. I found vegetables, sauteed them, and found some eggs and decided to make a veggie eggwhite scramble with half of a small avocado that I had from my picnic this past weekend.

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It was a great success, totally lean, full of good protein, raw, full of vitamins and minerals, vegetarian, had good fats (from the avocado), filling, and low calorie. When I feel lazy and I have eggs around, I’ll usually make a plain eggwhite scramble, but today’s was even better because of all the veggies. I could eat this every day! This meal is all sorts of GOOD.

In the afternoon, I made myself a protein shake with a little almond milk, water, a scoop of protein powder, and a tablespoon of almond butter, because I’m addicted, duh. I don’t have my shaker bottle like I do at home, so I found a janky ass bowl and whisked it all together. Not ideal, but hey, beggars can’t be choosers.

Four my 4th “meal”, I had a picnic with the little girl and I ate an apple and some dried fruit. And when dinner came around, I didn’t have much (aka any) freedom to choose what I ate, but I controlled my portions and ate slowly and mindfully. It was lamb with all sorts of sauces, and good lord it was good, but its red meat, and I try to avoid that at all costs. I’m proud of myself for avoiding the nightly cheese course, the bread, and the dessert… all things which I crave more than life itself. But my willpower carried me all the way through a successful dinner time, and now, moments before going to bed, I don’t feel sick to my stomach as I do when I overeat, I don’t feel bloated as I do when I eat the wrong things, I don’t feel remorse as I do when I lose self control… I feel perfectly content, healthy, and satisfied with myself today.

It really is amazing what starting the day off on the right foot can do for the outcome of the rest of the day. For me, waking up early and working out early was absolutely the key to my continued success all day long. I want to try to turn this into a habit, as it clearly works well for me! I feel strong, physically and mentally… I’d call that a success.

What habits work well for you? What do you do to start your day off on the right foot?

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Almond Butter

Look, if you haven’t figured out almond butter yet, you really need to get your shit together, because honestly there is no excuse to be living your life without this stuff.

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I found almond butter (for 10 euros, eek) at Naturalia, pretty much the only organic/natural food store in Paris/France (that I know of) and I found whole wheat rice cakes (thin ones) too, and I’m basically having a party with myself right now, licking almond butter off of my fingers and trying not to get it all over my pretty little computer. (PS: whole grain/brown rice cakes are a great source of slow digesting complex carbohydrates – aka good carbs – and they are low in calories so they can act as a nice substitute for bread and they are great to eat as a pre-workout snack.)

Almond butter, for those of you that are living in darkness, is like peanut butter, only better. (Check out this little info graphic comparing both nut butters, if you want to know more) (Also, for someone like me with high cholesterol, almond butter has less saturated fat than peanut butter so its better for me lil’ arteries). It has around 100 calories in one tablespoon and around 7 grams of protein, but what its really great for is getting some of your very important healthy fats (i.e. monosaturated fat) and for satisfying every desire your body and mouth could ever crave. Spread it on whole wheat bread, mix it in your oatmeal, in your protein smoothie, make delicious almond butter paleo balls (plenty of recipes online if you’re curious), or spread it on whole grain rice cakes and top it with a banana, like what I’m doing right this second. Its filling, lean, and so good for you! Just remember to stick to the listed serving size (even if you have to measure it out… 1tbsp is deceiving) since nut butters of all kinds are calorically dense, and if you’re trying to watch that pretty little figure of yours, you might want to consider not doing what I did and sticking the spoon straight into the jar and eating like it ain’t no thang.

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I’m begging you, try this shit, or get out!

Note: With any nut butter, try to buy organic and raw, since they tend to have less ingredients like salt, sugars, and preservers that alter the flavor and nutrition content of the product. Look for ones with the least amount of ingredients possible, and make sure they are all ingredients you can pronounce! (This goes for all food, pretty much). The one I bought today lists almonds as the only ingredient. Yours should too, or at least come very close.

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Peanut Butter + Banana Protein Smoothie

Holy mother of all that is good, I just made a bomb fucking smoothie. Check it out…

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1 banana

1 scoop protein powder (I use Sun Warrior vanilla)

1 tablespoon peanut butter

1/2 cup almond milk

About 1/8 cup water (or however much you think is necessary. Just a little is fine)

Blend that shit up. Drink it on down. Maybe cry a little ‘cus its so damn good.

I discovered that my house does indeed have a blender – a hand blender, actually, which is even better. So, since I’m tacky and had nothing else, I used whatever I could find (a nasty old tupperware container. IT WAS CLEAN I SWEAR) and tossed all my ingredients in there to blend. I was decent enough to drink it out of a cup for you, so be thankful.

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Almond milk? In France! C’est n’est pas possible!

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I would prefer natural, organic peanut butter, but in France, anything “natural” or “organic” or “healthy” or “not a complete hazard to your health” is considered snobby and is super expensive, or just doesn’t exist, so finding Skippy was a little miracle for me at the corner supermarket. Ehhh. (I’m not really complaining… lets be honest here, we all know Skippy tastes better than the watery organic shit.)

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Looks like the kind of thing you make when you’re a kid and you think its funny to waste a bunch of food for the sake of your stupid little game. Like mixing ketchup and wet, soggy bread, or something, and trying to convince your little sister to eat it. NOT THAT I EVER DID THAT OR ANYTHING…

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Et voilà! Your perfect barf-colored smoothie. It’ll knock your socks off, I swear.

** Note: I originally added 4 ice cubes, but my blender couldn’t crush them so I took them out, mid-blend, and added them back in later, only to realize that smoothies with ice cubes in them are kinda weird, so I took them out again. For future reference, use ice cubes if you have a real blender. If not, just skip them.**

This loin-tingling sensation has 285 calories and it’ll keep you full for hours. Its great for post-workout, or for breakfast, or for whatever moment in your day when you’re like, damn, I waunt that. Because even healthy people can treat themselves! Shiet.

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Holy Oatmeal

This morning, like most mornings, I made myself my favorite breakfast food: oatmeal. Considering that I have high cholesterol, oatmeal is an amazing and delicious breakfast option, as it is filled with soluble fiber which helps absorb the LDL, or “bad” cholesterol in your bloodstream. It is also incredibly filling, which is great if you are trying to watch your weight because you wont find yourself starving in an hour like you would with other less nutritious breakfast foods, like sugary cereal or white bread. Oatmeal doesn’t overload you with calories (less than 150 in a serving), it has a good amount of protein in one serving considering its a carbohydrate (about 6-7 grams) and its super versatile so you don’t have to get bored with the same toppings every day.

My usual oatmeal (cooked with water, not milk) consists of a scoop of protein powder, cinnamon, ground flax seed, mixed berries, and maybe a few slivered almonds or walnut pieces, but I will make do with whatever is available. Here in France, my host family doesn’t tend to buy berries, flax seed, protein powder, or nuts (much to my disappointment) so I have had to buy some of my own supplies in secret, while expanding my oatmeal horizons by occasionally adding apples or bananas, or, my most recent discovery, peanut butter.

This morning I had already eaten some plain yogurt with preserves (a very French breakfast), which would have been fine but the preserves are very sugary and, well, I love sweet things so I kind of had a lot. So when I went for my second meal (of my 5-6 small daily meals), I wanted it to be a little lighter than normal, so I made oatmeal (measured exactly one serving because my eyes always deceive me when I try to eyeball it) with a scoop of protein powder, cinnamon, and just about 3 walnuts, broken into pieces. It was satisfying, filling, and as delicious as always, and not too high in calories.

Used this handy kitchen scale to get my portion correct

My oatmeal trying to seduce me with its romantic morning glow

Since today is Wednesday (and I’m an au pair), I work all day because French kids don’t have school on Wednesdays (lucky fuckers) so I don’t really get much time to exercise. I know I probably should, you know, wake up at like 6am and work out in my tiny little room or something, but I have totally lost my ability to wake up early for exercise (there was a time when I would wake up at 5am and be done with exercise by 6:30 am. Those days are long gone, but I hope one day I can get them back) so Wednesdays are what I will call my “rest” days, because I flat out don’t do shit. I spend 12 hours with a 6-year-old and I spend most of those 12 hours praying that she will be good to me…

Anyway, since I don’t get any exercise on Wednesdays, I have to be extra careful with what I eat because I won’t really be burning much off. To be perfectly honest, I’m rarely extra careful. I’m at home all day, usually near the kitchen with the kids, and my lack of willpower is on attack mode. I’m hoping that writing about it in this blog will start to help keep me accountable, so for whoever is reading out there, I urge you to hold me to my promises, including my promise to be honest with myself and with you!

Back to oatmeal.

There are tons of healthy oatmeal recipes out there for those of you that might not be entirely convinced about the mothafuckin deliciousness of this kickass healthy food. I use Pinterest to find great recipes, most of which I never try (but sometimes I do, and I’m rarely disappointed), but in case you’re feeling up for it, here are a few links to oatmeal recipes that look amazing, though don’t take my word for it… I’ve never actually tried most of these. (Though maybe now that I’m posting this, I actually will!)

Baked Oatmeal

Carrot Cake Oatmeal

Blueberry Cheesecake Oatmeal

Clean Eating Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal

And a Youtube video with a few quick recipe ideas for oatmeal:

Thank you to WebMD for providing me with accurate nutritional information on this holy delicious food.

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