Protein for PCOS

So I’ve been thinking a lot lately about plant based ways to incorporate more protein into my diet.  Before I get any further, we all know that the number one question that vegans get asked is where they get their protein from.

I do honestly believe that vegans get more than enough protein from adequate plant based sources. Just look at the picture above and you’ll see that the gorilla has no problems getting his protein. Nor does the elephant or the ox (ever heard of the expression “strong as an ox?”) The truth is, the human body does not require as much protein as we have been led to believe. Did you know that there’s an actual term for protein deficiency called kwashiorkor?  If people are so worried about being protein deficient, then how come they’ve never heard of this term before?  It’s almost like people get into a panic about not getting enough protein, but it never becomes a concern until you become vegan.

Isn’t this the truth?!

However, having said all that, I’m wondering if for myself, I’m taking in adequate protein, especially since I have PCOS.  I wasn’t even that concerned until I had a talk with my health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition the other night and she kept asking me about my protein.  The next day she sent me this article about signs of protein deficiency, and I seem to fall under a whole lot of them.  I do have PCOS and fibromyalgia though, so I’m sure that has something to do with it.  And I refuse to follow the article’s recommendation of adding a little red meat into each meal.

For now, I want to experiment with maybe hemp powder or another form of protein powder in addition to my Shakeology, and also see if I can try to get in more of a variety in my diet. I’m looking to two of my favorite authors, Kimberly Snyder and Kris Carr, to help me on my journey.

Since I’m getting amazing results doing the ChaLEAN Extreme and Brazil Butt Lift Hybrid, it’s time I really kick it into gear with super natural, clean plant based sources.  I can’t wait to see what my body will look like with the combination of the two and with modifying my protein intake.

If you have PCOS, how do you feel about your protein intake?  Do you feel you’re getting enough, especially if you’re vegan?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Go Heavy or Go Home!

I just had the best workout ever and I can’t get over how amazing it made me feel.  Last week, I went through the same workout, but I could barely do it because the pain from my fibromyalgia was so horrendous.  This week, I powered through it and even though I was sweating buckets, I felt fantastic.  Chalene Johnson even said at the very end “You should feel like a million bucks” and I shouted back at the TV “yes Chalene, I do!!!!”  I can’t wait to work out live with her at Beachbody’s Coach Summit in Vegas in a few more weeks.

I even bought heavier weights last night because 5 pounds just wasn’t cutting it anymore!

Despite the recent weight loss that I’ve had thanks to the Beachbody Ultimate Reset, my weight has stabilized and I’ve been getting frustrated with myself because of the fact that I still have body fat on my body.  Which you might think sounds kind of ridiculous, but as my good friend Katy affectionately says to me, I’m eating “twigs and berries.”  I honestly don’t understand how it’s physiologically possible for me to have fat on my stomach and thighs when I drink a superfoods shake for breakfast everyday, have a salad with fruit for lunch, have another shake as a snack, and then eat vegetables with a whole grain for dinner, practically everyday.

I’d understand if I were eating junk here and there, but I’m honestly not.  There’s nothing that I’m eating that my body can grab onto in order for the fat to be there.  The only thing I can think of is that something strange is going on with my PCOS.  Either I’m not eating enough calories, or I’m eating too much (I don’t ever bother to count calories).  My guess is I’m not eating enough, because I’ve been waking up in the middle of the night starving.  I’ve also been eating higher glycemic fruits, like bananas, so I guess I have to cut back.  I’m still figuring out what works for me, because so many foods still make me so bloated, but it’s just so frustrating because I know that I take care of myself, and although I’m not severely overweight, I’ve got at least 10 to 20 pounds to go.  It’s even more frustrating when I see people shoveling junk into their bodies and they maintain a slim physique.  Trust me, the last thing I want to be doing is shoveling junk into my body, but it’s kind of a pain having to overanalyze every little thing that goes into my mouth.  Ok, rant over.  🙂

The weather’s been gorgeous around here, so today at lunch I sat outside with my IIN Fast Track Workbook and worked on learning on how to market myself while I enjoyed my delicious fruit.

And then when I left work, I couldn’t resist stopping by Starbucks and buying a soy chai (with half the amount of sugar or else it’s way too sweet for me!) and then having some Shakeology “ice cream” as a snack!

I also ordered two new books from Amazon and was excited to see that they were at my door when I arrived.  One’s a brand new vegan cookbook (as if I didn’t have enough already!) and the other one is about, as the title says, healing your headache.  The latest medicine that the neurologist gave me isn’t working, and even though I’m seeing him again next week, this book came recommended to me by another Beachbody coach who has fibromyalgia, and I’d like to see what it says and whether it’ll help me.  Hopefully it’ll tell me something new that I don’t already know.  It also had great reviews on Amazon.

For dinner, I had these amazing Tempeh Taco Lettuce Wraps courtesy of The Fitnessista.  A super easy recipe that only took me a few minutes to make!  Unfortunately I didn’t have mushrooms and I probably would’ve added some more spices next time, but definitely a recipe worth repeating!

Can’t believe it’s already June tomorrow, but I’m ready for it!

Glowing Green

It was back to work today!  Only 3 more weeks until it’s the end of school, which is pretty exciting, although I’ll be working throughout the summer to help me pay bills until I can get my Beachbody business off the ground running.

The exciting thing is though that it’s only 3 more weeks until Beachbody’s Coach Summit 2012 and 1 month until I turn 30!  I’ll officially have 3 weeks off (notice a 3 week theme here?!) between my last day of work and working summer school, but it’s definitely going to be a busy time!

Breakfast was, as usual, Shakeology, and for lunch I’ve been sticking to microgreen salads.  I won’t lie, I’m definitely getting tired of eating them everyday, but they’re so quick & easy to make, and I can get pretty lazy when it comes to cooking, so they’re my standby for now.

I accompanied my salad with some delicious blueberries.

Even though today was my workout rest day, I decided to do ChaLEAN Extreme today because tomorrow night I’m meeting up with some people who are in my Integrative Nutrition class.  My pre-workout snack was Kimberly Snyder’s Glowing Green Smoothie, which I haven’t made in a while, but it was delicious!

And for dinner I decided to have some of the butternut squash that my mom roasted for me yesterday along with some garlicky kale toasted in some coconut milk.  It was so good that I was thinking next time I’ll have the kale with some gluten-free pasta!

Now it’s off to bed for me.  It’s raining again, which means my pain levels are high and sleep tends to elude me.  Praying it’s different tonight!

 

Bring On Summer!

Hi everyone!  How did you spend your long weekends?!  I hope that you were able to relax and spend time with friends and family!  I know that I was very thankful to finally be able to let go and not have to think about anything other than just being free to do whatever I wanted.  I spent the majority of the weekend by the pool, soaking up the sunshine and swimming – my idea of heaven!  🙂

A little gf vegan pizza, something that I definitely consider a splurge meal, but it was very delicious!

Chipotle poolside today while I read The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone

I bought it last year and Alicia talks about things I already pretty much know about, but it helped to re-affirm why I choose to eat a plant based diet.  I also love it because she delves into the Macrobiotic lifestyle, something that I just learned about at Institute for Integrative Nutrition and that I’ve been wanting to explore more, so it’s perfect!

I bought lots of groceries to help set me up for the week, including salad greens, spinach, kale, celery, frozen mango, frozen pineapple, pears, shredded carrots, chia seeds, romaine, lemons, black beans, coconut milk, and blueberries.

Since it was still so warm out when I got home from the pool, I decided to make a cooling cucumber avocado soup for dinner, followed by Tropical Shakeology ice cream for dessert!

And my mom grilled up some butternut squash that I had sitting around, so I’m all set for tomorrow’s dinner, which I’ll probably eat with a side of some steamed kale.

Bring on summer!

Exercise Makes You Feel Happy :)

On a day like today when I’ve 3 Shakeology’s to get me through my meals because I’m too exhausted to cook, I wanted to remind you to eat fresh whole foods and get in your exercise. In the words of Reese Witherspoon in Legally Blonde, “”Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy!”

 

 

What have you done for YOURSELF today?!

Just Push Play

Hi everyone!  How were your weekends?!  I absolutely loved the gorgeous weather that we had here this weekend, and enjoyed it even moreso knowing that it’s going to be gray and cloudy here all week!  I met up with some friends, got caught up with studying my Integrative Nutrition content, and enjoyed the sunshine.

I was also super excited because today I managed to fit into a pair of jeans that I have not been able to fit into for over a year!!!  It’s all thanks to Beachbody!  First I lost 10 pounds with the Beachbody Ultimate Reset.  I did try on the jeans after the Reset, but they didn’t quite fit just yet.  This past week I’ve been doing the TurboFire/ChaLEAN Extreme hybrid and I’m so excited because it’s working!!!  Thanks to that, today I was able to zip those jeans up, yay!!!!

I’ve also decided that I need to start eating more like I was when I was eating the Reset meals.  This weekend I didn’t eat quite as close to the Reset, but now that I know how my body responds when I eat meals that aren’t as clean (even if they’re gluten-free and vegan), I’m better able to make wiser choices that help me on my path to wellness.

A little tempeh salad for lunch yesterday

With a side of Tropical Shakeology, since I still felt hungry.  I couldn’t finish it all though, so I saved some for snack later on.

I made some time to finally start writing in my IIN journal.  I can tell that this is definitely going to help me on my journey!

Pancakes for dinner.  I didn’t feel like cooking anything last night, so when I opened up to Chloe Coscarelli’s book and this was the first thing I saw, I knew that’s what I was making, haha!

Today I met up with my good friend Diana in Leesburg, which is not too far from here, but I felt like I was in a whole other world.  I had a great lunch of vegan pad thai (and I loved that on the menu itself it stated that the noodles were gluten-free!), but thanks to the Reset, I feel like my appetite has shrunk, so I only ate a little bit and saved the rest for dinner.

After lunch, we walked around and checked out some of the shops.  Since Leesburg is historic, sometimes you’ll see signs outside of places that show where something historic happened.  We couldn’t help noticing this one though!

We also got some yummy chai at this cute little coffee shop called Shoes, that actually has shoes hanging from the ceiling!

And they even had the most beautiful little secret garden, that reminded me of places that I used to go to in London when I lived there.

For some reason, I failed to take a picture of the garden, but trust me, it was beautiful!

So how were your weekends?  What did you do to take care of yourselves?

It’s the Weekend!

So happy that the weekend is here and that we’re enjoying blue skies and sunshine!  I’ve got lots of exciting things planned and I’m ready to enjoy them!  What are you up to this weekend?

Despite the pain, I’m really getting into working out and already noticing that I’m getting smaller, which is super exciting.  Loving every minute of it!

Keeping up the clean eating with Chocolate Shakeology for breakfast and awesome food for lunch and dinner.

Enjoy your weekends!

Seeking Answers

I’m baaaaack!!!  So I never intentionally set out to be gone for so many days, but ever since I finished the Reset, my food just has not been as interesting or fun to blog about.  And as much as I enjoyed preparing my meals on the Reset, I just haven’t made the time to do it post-Reset.  My goal though is to start shopping from the ingredients that I already have in my house, instead of going out and spending money on things when what I have is perfectly good.  My other goal is to make full use of all the amazing vegan cookbooks that I have.

Post-Reset, I’ve realized that foods are bloating me out more easily, so I ordered the Optimize and the Pre and Pro Biotics to see if it helps me with that.  During the Reset, I was hardly ever bloated.  The great news is that I’ve maintained my weight loss.  I’ve also started working out to my TurboFire/ChaLEAN Extreme Hybrid, and let me say, it feels awesome working out again!!!

I’ve also been delving further into my health issues thanks to the help of some amazing Beachbody coaches and another one of my fellow IIN students and I’m really started to suspect that I have either Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  My chiropractor a few weeks ago had mentioned that he thought I might have a mild case of Fibromyalgia, but I didn’t really pay attention to all of its symptoms until I read this list and my jaw dropped.  Pretty much every single one fits me.

I don’t have every single one of these symptoms, but I definitely have a lot of them.  And combined with PCOS?  Recipe for disaster!  Yet I’m thankful for my illness because it’s led me to where I am today.  My next step is to ask to get tested for Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Adrenal Fatigue, gallbladder issues, and whatever else my intuition tells me could be causing me so much pain.  It may not make it go away, but at least I’ll have answers.

Now, onto the food for today!

My beloved Chocolate Shakeology for breakfast

Marinated lime tempeh with farmer’s market asparagus and brown rice.  I was inspired by this tempeh recipe and it’s pretty much the only recipe that’s allowed me to really enjoy tempeh!

I accompanied that with a side salad

And then for dinner…well, have you ever had one of those nights where you don’t really feel like eating real food, but you know that you need to eat something?  I had leftover brown rice, so I decided to have rice pudding for dinner, and it was delicious.

I’m looking forward to the weekend and warm, sunshine!

Coconut Butternut

Phase 2 of the Beachbody Ultimate Reset is over tomorrow, I can’t believe it!  After that, only one more week left.  I think I’ll be sad when it’s over.  I’ve gotten used to taking the supplements and knowing exactly what to eat at each meal.  But I will say that I am most definitely looking forward to starting a hybrid of TurboFire and ChaLEAN Extreme as my workout program.  Oh and definitely looking forward to drinking Shakeology again!  The weight loss results I’ve had so far have been amazing and I want to keep it up, especially since summer is coming and I’m attending the Beachbody Coach Summit 2012 in Las Vegas in June. I can’t wait!

On a side note, if you’re interested in doing the Beachbody Ultimate Reset, please contact me, as I’d love to coach you through the process!  If you need anymore motivation or reasons to do it, check out this amazing blog post by our CEO, Carl Daikeler, about why the Reset is life changing.

Now, onto the food for today!  🙂

I added some peaches into my fruit salad for today and it was delicious!

Lunch was my usual microgreen salad with roasted beets.  Guess I roasted them a little too much, whoops!  Beets have never been my favorite, but it still tasted good.

I did have a snack in between because I was a little hungrier today, but it was my same green apple with blueberries.

Dinner was amazing!

Roasted butternut squash roasted with onions, garlic, and coconut milk, with a side of steamed broccoli and steamed zucchini.  The original recipe was for kabocha squash, but neither I nor anyone on my team could find it anywhere.  The dressing was also supposed to be a garlic-tahini dressing, but since I can’t do sesame, one of the amazing coaches on my team suggested I use coconut milk, and it worked out great.

I’m also excited because I’m really diving into the materials at Institute for Integrative Nutrition.  With this being pretty much my only full evening off this week, I’m taking advantage of the time I’ve got!

Himalayan

Day 11 of the Beachbody Ultimate Reset is over!  I can’t believe that I’m already more than halfway done.  My eyes are looking brighter, my skin is looking clearer, and my stomach is flattened out so much in just one week, I can’t believe it!  Of course, I’m super excited  and can’t wait to start working out once the Reset is over so that I can continue with my results.

I also haven’t been bloated at all, except for once, when I used Bragg’s Liquid Aminos in one of the recipes.  Bragg’s is loaded with too much sodium for me, but I’ve discovered that I can use Himalayan sea salt and not get bloated at all!  I love it!!!

I did sleep a lot last night to today and didn’t feel my greatest this morning, but now I’m started to feel a little bit better.  My body’s definitely going through a lot in order to cleanse itself.  Thankfully my appetite returned to normal and I had trouble finishing both my lunch and dinner, which has been normal on the Reset.

I’m loving the fruit salad for breakfast everyday!  Today I bought some peaches, so I can’t wait until they’re ripe so I can add them to my daily breakfast.

My mom and I went to a family friend’s birthday party today, but I made sure to pack my lunch and my distilled water with me.  This is my leftover quinoa lentil pilaf from last night with some cucumber tomato salad.  I was pretty upset when I went to go chop up the cucumber and discovered that it had no seeds inside.  Why was I upset?  Because that means that it was most likely genetically modified, but I didn’t have time to go buy a new cucumber and I didn’t want to starve, so I ended up eating it.  I’m throwing the rest of the cucumber away!

Tonight’s soup was perfect for the cold temperatures we’ve been having lately.  Hearty vegetable miso soup with steamed leafy greens.  It was supposed to be swiss chard, which I was really excited about trying for the first time, but Whole Foods didn’t have any.

I’ve been really wanting to do a little light yoga with my TurboFire Stretch 40 DVD or a little Tai Cheng, but the course of my days are usually work all day, have something going on in the evenings, come home cook dinner, quickly check messages on the computer, blog, then head to bed.  I can’t wait to break out of this cycle because it’s not doing me any good!  This upcoming week is going to be crazier than normal, but it’s no wonder that my body is so exhausted all the time.  Let’s see what Day 12 brings tomorrow!