One of the reasons I started blogging was to share things (ideas, recipes, products, etc.) that worked for me on my weight loss journey. I've always been an oversharer, so I love getting questions about the products I use or the books I enjoyed.
Before I start my list of favorites, I need to stress I do not have a relationship with any of the brands listed (unless it's my brand!) These are all products I enjoy. You may see me use them in a recipe here and there as well, the food ones at least.
That said, I am an Amazon affiliate, so if you click on any of the images and decide to buy an item I've listed here, I'll make a few cents.
I'm more of a movie person than a book person so no fiction recommendations from me. These are just a couple of books in the diet/health realm I enjoyed or wrote!
What You Can When You Can: Healthy Living on Your Terms
In all seriousness, What You Can When You Can summarizes the approach I used to change my lifestyle and stop yo-yo dieting. The cover may be cheesy (not my choice!), but the contents are full of simple, no-nonsense ways to change the way you think about healthy living.
I have two other books on Amazon as well, a children's book I wrote inspired by potty training my boys and a recipe book that has my favorite recipes from the first three years (2007-2010) of GreenLiteBites (pre-reboot).
Thinner Leaner Stronger
If you want to learn more about macro counting I recommend this book by Michael Matthews. Some of his comments about weight loss and sculpting the "perfect body" made me cringe but he backs up his nutrition advice with tons of science and provides all the formulas needed to start tracking macros and shows some sample meal plans for losing (cutting), maintaining and bulking (muscle gain).
He also goes into the fitness aspect and talks about what lifts you should focus on so you don't have to spend hours and hours at the gym.
I enjoyed this book. It debunks a lot of myths about weight loss
See, I'm an eater. I love to eat. I love food. I enjoy feeling full. It comforts me and soothes my soul.
In the book, the author presents research that shows people tend to eat about the same amount of food based on weight, not calories. So in general, a person's food intake is relatively consistent. However, that amount of food we consume could be 1000 calories or 5000 calories depending on its energy density (calories.)
For example 100g of grapes in about 60 calories. On the other hand, 100g of potato chips is about 530 calories. So, in essence, you could eat nearly nine times the amount of grapes as you could chips for the same amount of calories, and you would be WAY more full.
It sounds like a no-brainer to me now but back then it was eye-opening. This book taught me how to "bulk-up" my food in a healthy and nutritious way allowing me to eat more for less. Even though it's a bit old and outdated, I highly recommend it, especially if you struggle with portion control as I do. Click here to check it out on Amazon.
Things I Consume
My food choices are mostly lean meats and veggies, but there are a few products I buy from Amazon regularly that you may see me reference in a recipe or two.
There are a TON of protein supplements out there. The market is saturated. I really can't make any recommendations about what's the "best" or that you should even be using them. All I can do is share what I use and why I use it.
First, most protein powders contain a crap-ton (actual unit of measurement) of flavors and additives. I am not a fan. Not because I think they are going to kill me but because I don't want to be stuck with one to a specific flavor nor do I want some company to sweetened things for me using whatever they are using.
Whey is part of my go-to morning/breakfast protein for smoothies. And I like to keep casein in stock for when I'm short on protein at the end of the day. It can be turned into a pudding -- I'll share some recipes for this soon.
My history of Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) and digestive issues brought me down the path of probiotics and D-Mannose both of which are in this product. I take it daily, and it has done wonders for me, especially in the UTI department. I haven't had one since taking this regularly.
Most of you will think I'm crazy, but I LOVE Shirataki Noodles. Once I discovered a way to prepare them that worked for me, I became obsessed.
They are a great way to bulk up a meal. Top them with chili or your favorite sauce. They are great with pesto and chicken. I even love them in soup.
Don't be fooled into thinking they will taste anything like traditional pasta. I like them for what they are, not for what they replace. I'll be sharing more recipes using them soon in case you want to try them.
Things I Use
I enjoy taking a low-tech approach to cooking, so I try to keep my gadgets to a minimum. That said, there are a few things I use regularly. I cringe at saying "I can't live without them" because that's not true. I enjoy these things, and they make my life a little easier.
The Magic Bullet
If I share a smoothie idea, you can bet I made it in My Bullet. I'm on my second one. Fifteen years ago I had the original, and it served me well. I beat that thing to death! The motor finally died after years of use.
I went without one for a while but making smoothies in the blender was more complicated and messy. So two years ago I bought the updated bullet, and I couldn't be happier. I used it almost daily. I can't even remember the last time I pulled out an old-fashioned blender.
After the "zoodle" craze hit, I started buying vegetable noodles from my local grocery store and became obsessed. Especially with butternut squash cut into noodles. The only problem was, they would sell out so it was a crapshoot whether I could get my hands on them when I wanted them.
So last year I asked for a spiralizer for Christmas, and I couldn't be happier. This thing is inexpensive, simple and easy to use. I love it!