Can we be honest? I mean to ourselves? When it comes to diet and exercise I know I like to stretch the truth a bit. OK, sometimes I stretch it a lot, and that is usually when the stretch pants have to come out! My best barometer for my weight is my clothes. If they are feeling a bit tight, I know it is time to reconsider what I am doing. I recently read this article about the 5 White Lies We Tell ourselves that will stall weight loss. Even if you are at a weight you like, you might recognize yourself in a couple of these. I know I did! The one that really hit home was “I eat really healthy, most of the time.” Yep, except for the extra slice of bread last night at dinner. Or the second portion of cheese I couldn’t resist. Or the dessert I had after dinner even though I already had dessert after lunch. But the meals themselves were so healthy! Bean salad! Veggie burger! Stuffed peppers! Portobella sandwiches! And I worked out! Hard! Yep, I know all the justifications for indulging, and it is time to be honest with myself. Other white lies included in the article are “I eat when I am hungry and stop when I am full,” “I’m not a big drinker,” “I eat 5 or 6 small meals a day” and “I can eat more because I work out a lot.” Sound familiar?
Two years ago, when I was really determined to lose weight, I started a food journal. Now the only way for that to work is to be totally honest with yourself and write down EVERYTHING you eat. You have to be accountable to yourself. I found myself evaluating the food I was about to eat. I would ask myself if I really wanted to write down that I had two helpings of mashed potatoes? Did I really need another snack? Were the calories I was about to consume worth having it in black and white? That started my conscious eating that continues today. Indulging requires trade offs. I was able to take off close to 30 pounds because I finally got honest with myself. You know the saying, if you aren’t part of the solution, you are part of the problem. Be honest, which would you rather be? When you are surfing the web are you checking out recipes for decadent food? Try watching cute kitten videos instead! Are you using excuses such as “the kids need a treat?” Remember, they need role models to show them how to be honest with themselves about food. When you go out with friends and see them indulging, do you tell yourself you deserve to indulge too? Try thinking about how you will feel the next day if you indulge versus not indulging. Stand up for yourself and be honest!
That brings me to another great article. I have always thought every food is okay, in moderation. I now understand there are two types of people: abstainers and moderators. Time to be honest with yourself again. If you are always trying to be moderate in your portions or choice of food and have been failing, you could be an abstainer. A good friend of mine is an abstainer. And I still like her! She loves the idea of thinking about being free from a food instead of being deprived. She is honest with herself and knows she has to cut out the cheat foods completely and great results will follow (and they have). I know I am a moderator because if I cut out a food completely I feel deprived. I would rather have a bite or two and then stop rather than deny myself. Which are you? Be honest!
Now can we talk zucchini? It seems everyone has a ton of this great vegetable. This recipe is easy and quick! I grate the zucchini first and put it in a colander with a pinch of salt to draw the water out. This prevents a soggy pie. Taking the seeds out before grating also decreases the liquid in the zucchini. As with most of my recipes feel free to use whatever herbs or cheese you like best. You can even substitute other vegetables. Broccoli, peppers, mushrooms or cauliflower would all work great! I modified this from a recipe in Real Simple. Be sure to allow at least an hour and half to prepare as it needs to bake for almost an hour. The great part about this recipe is you can change it up by using less zucchini and adding chopped mushrooms, spinach, chopped broccoli, etc. The pie pictured was made with 2 cups zucchini, 1 cup chopped arugula, diced shallot instead of green onions, parlsey and oregano.
3 cups grated zucchini (about 2 medium)
1 cup flour (I use half white, half whole wheat)
1/8 cup chopped green onion
1 cup favorite cheese, grated
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4c vegetable oil
4 Tbsp grated parmesan, divided
1 Tbsp chopped fresh herbs (basil, thyme, rosemary, etc.) OR 1 tsp dried herbs
1 tsp baking powder
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Place shredded zucchini in a colander and allow to drain for while you prepare other ingredients.
3. Reserve a tablespoon of parmesan and then combine all ingredients, except draining zucchini, in a large bowl. Squeeze as much liquid as possible out of the shredded zucchini and stir into rest of ingredients in bowl.
4. Spoon into a greased 10” pie plate. Bake 40-50 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean from center. Sprinkle with remaining parmesan and allow to cool 10-15 minutes before slicing.