THE Premier Low-Carb store .. .. AND Meeting Place

Thursday, July 31, 2008

No-Carb or Low-Carb is the question?!

I'm all for low-carbing (I stay under 100 grams a day and when I'm more seriously low-carbing, I stay under 50 grams a day), as it just seems a healthier way for me to live my life and to keep my weight in check. However, a few people tend to sometimes take things to extremes, in my opinion. NO Carbs! I'm open-minded, so I'm thinking that perhaps that would be okay a couple of days a week, however, some people might do this for weeks or months on end. I happen to think - and this is totally my opinion - that the body needs the nutrients from at the very least vegetables, if not fruits as well. These nutrients help the body to function optimally (fiber, antioxidants, etc.) and to fight diseases such as cancer and to lower blood pressure to prevent heart disease and stroke. Fruits and vegetables also lower risk of eye and digestive problems. Fruits and vegetables keep our bodies in a more alkaline state. If one were to eat only meat, I would imagine an acidic state could possibly develop in the body and that is not a good situation. Obviously, meat and water fasts are a short term thing if anything and one needs to take supplements.

Personally, I could not stomach only meat for even two days in a row. That's me though. I also cannot see how one can sustain such an austere diet for any length of time, so perhaps I'm worrying about people for nothing.

I know the Eskimos lived on mostly meat and blubber, but wonder if sometimes they got scurvy from lack of vitamin C. I'm rambling... a quick googling on the subject told me that the Eskimos did not get scurvy and that apparently they got vitamin C from the skins of Beluga whales... Anyway, it is a moot point now as they eat a lot of what Western people eat (junk food!) and as a result suffer from similar ailments of too much weight, and especially diabetes.

Happy low-carbing - not no-carbing, hopefully! Each to their own though...I still think moderation in everything is a good mantra to live by.

GLUTEN-FREE LOW-CARB BAKE MIX(GF)



Newest Update - please see my newest Gluten-Free Low-Carb Bake Mix options:

Here and here.

Blurb about the Gluten-free Low-Carb Bake Mix (a little more than 1/3 the carbs of white flour): Since oat flour has been approved for folks with Celiac disease (see my earlier post this month), this has opened up a whole new opportunity to make a palatable low-carb bake mix that can also be used in my recipe books. My bake mix worked first time for cookies as well as for muffins when I used it in place of the white flour. Always add liquid ingredients cautiously, withholding at least 1/2 cup and add gradually, until the correct batter consistency for muffins, loaves or cookies is achieved. I made scones yesterday and they were really nice, however, I left out 1/2 the liquid requirements. The same would be true of proceeding cautiously with pancake and crepe batters. If too much liquid is added, stir in a little extra bake mix to the right consistency. Although not perfect, I think this bake mix has potential. It could be a little more difficult for novice bakers, but with practice it will become easier. The trick is to know more or less the consistency of the various batters. For instance, cookie dough is stiffer or thicker, if you will, than muffin or loaf batters.
Alternatives to oat flour: It is possible to use another gluten-free flour to dilute the amount of oat flour or to substitute completely (unless it is soy or millet flour, the carbs will be higher), but I would tend to keep the other ingredients in the same amounts more or less. Xanthan gum has properties that bind the other ingredients together nicely (prevents crumbling), although it does cut sweetness slightly. It is possible to use soy (5.0 g carbs) or millet flour (9 g carbs) in place of oat flour and golden flax meal in place of the coconut flour (6.7 g carbs). It is possible to replace almond flour with hazelnut flour or walnut flour. Hazelnut flour is available through Netrition.com and is made by Bob's Red Mill: Hazelnut Flour

I will attach the Chocolate Cheesecake Muffin recipe (from my first book, Splendid Desserts - regular low-fat sugar free desserts - not low-carb) now and hopefully tomorrow I will have a photo for the blog of those muffins. They were excellent with a tender cake-like crumb, just as if they had been made with white flour.
Click here for New Information about my Gluten-free Low-Carb Bake Mix. I'm working on a new formulation without coconut flour. So far so good, it works wonderfully in muffins and loaves and seems to be almost a cup-for-cup substitution for white flour in recipes. Good news is that it is also quite low-carb at 5 g carbs per 1/4 cup. Anyway, I need to do much more testing.  Apparently millet flour has low carbs like oat flour, but it can be quite grassy-tasting, so maybe using a little of it in combination with oat flour would work better?

GLUTEN-FREE LOW-CARB BAKE MIX

1 1/2 cups oat flour (certified gluten-free), OR soy flour (slightly lower carb), OR millet flour (maybe!)
1 cup ground almonds, OR almond flour, OR Hazelnut flour
1/2 cup sifted coconut flour (available from Netrition) OR golden flax meal
1 tsp Xanthan gum (available from Netrition)
Yield: 3 cups, 12 servings of 1/4 cup each
100.7 calories; 4.2 g protein; 5.3 g fat; 7.0 g net carbs

Here is the nutritional breakdown of Coconut Flour:

Per 2 tbsp (14 g):
26 calories; 1.5 g fat; 2.0 g protein; 10 g carbs subtract 9 g fiber = 1 g net carb or 8 grams of carbohydrate per cup
Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins
These muffins are so good - no butter or fruit spread required. Granted these muffins are higher carb than the muffins in my low-carb cookbooks. The highest I ever went was 8 grams with most of the muffins being around 3 or 4 grams of carbs each. Nevertheless these muffins are less than half the carbs of the original Splenda recipe from my diabetic cookbook, Splendid Desserts. I think this bake mix gives people with gluten intolerance some other options.
Cream Cheese Mixture
3 oz cream cheese, softened
2 tbsp Splenda Granular
Chocolate Batter
1 1/2 cups Gluten-Free Bake Mix
3/4 cup Splenda Granular
3 tbsp cocoa
2 tbsp powdered Erythritol (optional)
1 tbsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg
1 cup of a mixture of half cream and half water
1/4 cup light-tasting olive oil
Cream Cheese Mixture: Beat the cream cheese and 2 tbsp Splenda Granular until smooth and light. Set aside.
Chocolate Batter: Place dry ingredients in a large bowl. Make a well in the center.
Beat the egg very well. Stir in the cream mixture and olive oil.
Add the liquid ingredients to the well in center of dry ingredients. Stir just until moistened.
Spoon a little chocolate batter into bottom of 8 greased muffin cups. Place a generous teaspoon of the cream cheese mixture on top of the batter in each muffin cup and top with chocolate batter, to 3/4 cup full.
Bake in a 375°F oven 15 to 20 minutes.
Yield: 8 muffins
204.5 calories; 5.6 g protein, 15.6 g fat, 9.2 g net carbs
Have fun with this bake mix and feel free to give me feedback. I have not tested it extensively.
Helpful Hints: This chocolate muffin is not overly sweet (nor was the original recipe), but sweet enough. Splenda Granular does not sweeten chocolate optimally and that is why I sometimes use a little erythritol or the Splenda packets. The bake mix contains some fiber due to the almonds, but especially due to the coconut flour. This might be a little rough for some people, so I advise caution until one knows how one tolerates the extra fiber. In my experience with low-carbing, added fiber in the diet is a good thing.

Certified Gluten-Free Oat Flour is now readily available from many sources:

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

SPREADABLE BUTTER - A STAPLE IN OUR HOME

 
In Canada, I remember the days when butter was suddenly bad for one and we were told it would be wise to switch to margarine (the soft spreadable, yellow-colored kind). There were some margarines that were considered healthier than others and we chose one that was considered healthy but was also a little cheaper than the leading brand, Becel. It came in big tubs by comparison to the small containers for Becel and was called Country Crock. Through the years while the boys were very young, and possibly before they were born, we consumed hundreds of these tubs of trans fat containing margarine. Ian's dad, a medical doctor, in Cape Town South Africa told us even then that margarine was not preferable to butter, but we did not believe him unfortunately. Several years later there was a big hoopla as we were told to switch from margarine back to butter - oops they had made a mistake!! What about how that mistake affected people's health? Too bad, hey?! Remember the time that eggs were thought to increase cholesterol in the body and how for years they were vilified? That myth still abounds in the minds of many doctors and lay people. Change is very slow in coming! We know that to be true: look at the slow acceptance of Low Carb Diets for people with diabetes as a case in point.

In the Globe and Mail, Toronto, yesterday, there was an article re trans fats in margarines and I'll quote from it to show that change has been very slow in coming. It has been many years since the general public has been informed of the dangers of trans fats.

"The task force, a partnership between Health Canada and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, said that while numerous fast-food restaurants have cut trans fats sharply, many margarine producers have resisted change. Trans fats, which are typically cheaper than other oils, have become a dominant ingredient for many restaurants and food manufacturers in recent decades because they provide a rich texture and long shelf life. Health organizations and advocacy groups have led a major campaign against trans fats, which have been linked to elevated unhealthy cholesterol levels and increased risks of coronary heart disease."

They discovered that most margarines still contain more than 15% trans fats!

SPREADABLE BUTTER
This is a clever way to make butter healthier and higher in monounsaturated fats. The taste is just like butter, plus it spreads easily straight from the refrigerator.  This is what I use: Members Selection, Extra Light Tasting Olive Oil Imported from Italy (2 L bottle) from the equivalent of Costco.

1 lb salted butter (4 sticks), softened
1 1/2 to 2 cups light-tasting olive oil* (see Helpful Hints below)  (I use 2 cups with my butter - there may be differences and you may have to adjust the next time)

In blender or food processor, process butter and olive oil until soft, creamy and smooth. Turn out (using a soft spatula) into plastic container with lid and refrigerate until set.

Yield: 3 cups, 1 tsp per serving, 42.5 calories, 0.0 g pro, 4.8 g fat, 0.0 g carbs

*Helpful Hints: I usually double this recipe as it lasts long in the refrigerator. Choose an olive oil that has no perceptible taste (the green one is stronger tasting), so that it doesn't overpower the taste of the butter. If per chance the olive oil overpowers the butter taste, then use that Healthy Butter for frying and cooking. Now here is the thing: It really depends on your butter, however, the brand that I use now requires 4 sticks of butter and two cups of olive oil. A little bit of trial and error will find your perfect Healthy Butter Recipe! My family will not do without it!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Blurb about Splendid Low-Carbing for Life, Vol. 1



To purchase directly from us: Splendid Low-Carbing for Life, Volume 1 or order from Amazon.com

In the beverage section is a very useful Meal Replacement Shake at about 250 calories that may be used occasionally in place of a meal, on the Fat Fast or to induce ketosis. More Splendid Low-Carbing has many fat fast recipes, including instructions on how to go about doing it.

In the Appetizers section are my Mexican Tortilla Roll-Ups that I’ve used frequently for finger foods at parties. The chicken strips with Mexi-cali dip are yummy. The Pecan Cheese ring with colorful low-carb fruit spread in the center and surrounded by low-carb crackers or vegetables is pretty as a picture. A nice starter to a meal would be the Shrimp starter elegantly served in champagne glasses.

Salads: The Bacon ‘n Avocado salad has an amazing dressing. This recipe was a gift from a dear friend of mine, who recently passed away over Christmas time. This salad, which I frequently make, always reminds me of Jeanne. What a dear lady and what a blessing she was to me and how I miss her! Jeanne also supplied me with a Squash Soup recipe that is super. I’ve used different squashes and they’re all nice in this soup. The Faux Baked Potato Soup is delicious as is the Garden Cream of tomato soup that uses fresh, ripe tomatoes, hopefully out of your very own garden!


Breakfast: Waffles (with wheat bran for fiber), Ultra low-carb pancakes with several variations. If one uses whole wheat pastry flour or oat flour in place of the 2 tbsp vanilla whey protein, these have almost exactly the same consistency and taste as the drop scones I remember from my youth. I make these often and they satisfy my craving for bread. I always seem to lose weight when I have them around. I’ve noticed that time and again. They satisfy due to the fat content, probably, plus the eggs also keep one from getting hungry. Crunchy Granola, Breakfast Pizza, Roast Beef Roll-ups, Oat Drop Biscuits, Faux Blueberry Oatmeal and a California Omelet round out this section.

Meat: Of note, is the Crock-Pot Beef Roast that I make quite often, as well as the Fruited Pork also done in the crock-pot. The Sirloin Steak in Butter Sauce is decadent, as well as the Greek-style Lamb and the spicy, tender Pork Vindaloo is different. Mozzarella Beef Roll is a nice meat loaf that is slightly fancier than usual – made with sharper cheese it could be nicer yet.

Poultry: Instructions to roast a chicken with tasty bread-sausage stuffing (no deprivation here!), 2 lovely chicken casseroles – Spicy Tomato Chicken and Baked Barbecue Chicken (both very easy). Chicken Alfredo in crepes , Oven Baked Chicken with a crispy, flavorful skin, Chicken Fajitas in a Cheese Taco Shell (if you haven’t made these before, you’re in for a treat – much tastier than the usual corn tacos) and Chunky Turkey Chili to take care of leftover roast turkey.

Fish and Shellfish: Several useful shrimp recipes, Impossible Tuna Pie, Tuna Stroganoff (comfort food), Baked Lobster Tails and a couple of salmon recipes, one of them impressive enough to serve to your guests.

Vegetables: Eggplant lasagna (almost as good as my famous Eggplant Parmigiana (recipe in this blog), a Spinach Quiche that will change your mind about Spinach (good enough for guests), Bacon Fried Mushrooms, Impossible Vegetable pie (another recipe from Jeanne) and several other good recipes for various low-carb veggies.

Miscellaneous Section: Of note here is my Healthy Butter. After you have made this with real butter and light tasting olive oil (has the consistency of spreadable margarine right out of the refrigerator), your family will be begging you to supply it on a regular basis. Many, many of my friends make this butter – so much healthier and cheaper than using pure butter – and it has exactly the taste of pure butter!! Don’t you dislike taking hard butter out of the refrigerator and trying to spread something with it? This recipe solves that problem. My Confectioner’s Sugar Substitute, Condensed Milk, Thickening Agent, Easy Berry Jams, Sweet Butters, Lemon Curd and Spreadable Cream Cheese, to name but a few of the recipes.

Breads, Bake Mixes & Baking: Several muffin recipes as well as sweet loaf recipes such as Brownie Loaf, Pumpkin Spice Loaf, Apple Spice Loaf and a super Cranberry Orange Loaf, my Ultimate Bake Mixes, as well as a nut-free alternative, some bread machine breads, and Dessert Crepes which you’ll want to make again and again.

Frozen Desserts, Popsicles, & Puddings: Raspberry Yogurt Ice Cream is a very thick, creamy protein ice cream that does not require eggs. Chocolate Cream Popsicles, Strawberry Raspberry Popsicles, a chocolate pudding, Easy Rhubarb Crumble, Raspberry Jelly, a pleasant Thanksgiving custard served with Crème Fraiche and my son, Daniel’s favorite frozen yogurt – Mandarin Orange Frozen Yogurt with 4 variations.



Pies, Cakes & Cheesecakes: A single pie crust (useful, tastes great) to roll out, Raspberry Custard Pie, Apple Pie Almondine and a Caramel pie that is irresistible as it tastes like caramel condensed milk poured into a pie shell (one slice is never enough, so be warned!). Mini Hot Chocolate Cakes – even just the memory of these bring rave reviews from my husband. A Hazelnut Chocolate Bundt Cake (no flour), Triple Chocolate Cupcakes – yummy! Mini Cheese Cupcakes (mini cheesecake muffins), Marble Frosted Chocolate Cheesecake and a B-52 Cheesecake (B-52 DaVinci Sugar Free Syrup is used, however, any flavor can substituted for an entirely differently flavored cheesecake).

Confections and Frostings: The Chocolate Peanut Butter Candy made my husband say, “This recipe alone is worth the price of the book!” High praise! (smile) Almond butter may be used instead. White Chocolate Protein Bars to carry in your purse is a handy recipe to have, or the Double Chocolate Protein Bars. Vanilla Whey Frosting and a lovely alternative chocolate version that I like to snack on. After refrigerating it becomes more toffee-like. There is a Hazelnut Chocolate Frosting that will remind you of Nutella, a very sugary, but tasty chocolate hazelnut spread. Then there is a deliciously rich Chocolate Fudge Frosting, Raspberry Chocolate Fudge, Caramel Pecan Fudge with variations and a couple more chocolate candy recipes (I am a real chocolate fan!).


Cookies and Squares: Deluxe Chocolate Chip Cookies (or use chopped, blanched hazelnuts or a mixture of nuts and raisins), Banana Almond Butter Cookies, a healthy candy-like no bake Chocolate Cookie, Almond Butter Cookies (my best almond cookie), Almond Roco Squares, Sour Cream Brownies, Sesame Snacking Squares (chewy squares packed with sesame seeds!), Almond Coconut Squares (takes care of fiber needs) and another high fiber square – Chocolate Snowflake Squares – which I often take with me on vacation.

That basically gives one an idea of what is in this book. Sometimes people are so confused and don’t know which book to buy. That’s when I say, if you can’t afford all of them, then a good plan is to buy Splendid Low-Carbing For Life, Volume One and Volume Two. You’re getting good value for money and the benefit of several years of low-carb cooking and baking experience, not to say that the other books don’t have great breakthroughs – they really do!

To purchase directly from us: Splendid Low-Carbing for Life, Volume 1 or order from Amazon.com

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

New 2-year Diet War Study - Atkins Diet wins!!

In the news: Recently the Atkins diet was stacked up against the Mediterranean-style diet (a variant of a low-fat diet) and the low-fat diet in a two-year study on 322 participants residing in a controlled environment with meals laid on. The low-carb dieters lost the most weight and had the most improved cholesterol. The part I find weird is this and I quote: “The low-carb diet set limits for carbohydrates, but none for calories or fat. (that's fine, but read on) It urged dieters to choose vegetarian sources of fat and protein.”
Read the story here: Low-carb beats low-fat in diet duel

Also, read here: Another reporting

Monday, July 14, 2008

That fateful year -2003- when low-carbing started to tank!

In 2003, the year that Dr. Atkins died (probably just before his death), the Ottawa Citizen’s excellent reporter, Daniel Q. Haney, was extolling the virtues of low-carb diets. After Dr. Atkins died, low-carbing in general tanked so badly, that even low-carb cookbooks were being sold for next to nothing, simply to get rid of stock in bookstores. Many wonderful cookbooks by big names such as Better Homes and Gardens and Canada’s Jean Pare, who also had a short foray into the low-carb arena, were being sold in Costco at phenomenal bargains. The writing was on the wall. Publishers started refusing any more cookbooks or books with low-carb in the title. In fact, even Dana Carpender, the most famous low-carb cookbook author in the world, had to go to gymnastics with her subsequent book titles to disguise the low-carb content. Sad! My own book sales plummeted and have only recently started doing better. We’re self publishers of my books and the art that my husband purchased from one particular and incredibly talented artist, Jonathon Bowzer. My youngest son (21) is working on his own books – novels, 3 of them will be based on the story of our lives. He has also taken over the art business: greatmasterpieces.com

Jimmy Moore is the king of low-carb bloggers and apparently according to him, he gets over 1 million visits a month! That is phenomenal and really it says to me that low-carbing is still alive and well and that there is a vibrant low-carb community out there, still requiring services that can be provided in that regard. Dr. Michael Eades and his wife Mary Dan and Dr. Bernstein, and others are still very active in the low-carb community with their blogs, forums, books, etc. Now the ADA has tentatively approved low-carb diets for people with diabetes and this has opened up a whole new arena.

Here is the article from the Ottawa Citizen. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to link to it anymore. It is long but interesting and worth a read. Low-Carbing was still so popular at the time of printing this article, but, believe me, things went downhill from there pretty rapidly after Dr. Atkins passed away so tragically and so suddenly.

“Is it just possible that Dr. Robert C. Atkins's high-fat, low-carb plan, ridiculed for 30 years as dangerous nonsense, actually is a good, safe way to lose weight?

The dietary elite are not ready to change their collective mind, but new studies have taken an objective look at the presumed evils of Dr. Atkins. The results have been astonishing:

- During a few months on the Atkins diet, people lose about twice as much as on the standard low-fat, high-carbohydrate approach.

- They do so without seeming to drive up their risk of heart disease. Rather than going kaflooey, their cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure and ominous bloodstream inflammation generally improve.

- They appear to lose more weight even while consuming more calories than people on a so-called healthy diet.

All of the experiments were short and small. None by itself would make a big stir. But taken together, they undermine much of what mainstream medicine assumes about the Atkins diet.

"Some scientists are dismayed by the data and a little incredulous about it," said Gary Foster, who runs the weight-loss program at the University of Pennsylvania. "But the consistency of the results across studies is compelling in a way that makes us think we should investigate this further."

Until now, the essentially unamimous medical opinion has been: Any diet that emphasizes meat, eggs and cheese and discourages bread, rice and fruit is nutritional folly.

On the Atkins diet, up to two-thirds of calories may come from fat -- more than double the usual recommendation. Eating calorie-dense fat is what makes people fat, and eating saturated fat is what kills them, says the establishment.

Despite this, Dr. Atkins's books have sold 15 million copies, uncounted millions have tried the diet, and practically everybody has heard of someone who dropped a lot of weight on the Atkins plan.

Finally, several U.S. research teams have put Atkins to the test, driven largely by weariness at having nothing solid to tell patients and, in some cases, a desire to prove Atkins wrong. One study was even sponsored by the American Heart Association, long an Atkins skeptic.

None has been published, but summaries have been given at medical conferences. "They all show pretty convincingly that people will lose more weight on an Atkins diet, and their cardiovascular risk factors, if anything, get better," says Dr. Kevin O'Brien, a University of Washington cardiologist involved with one of the studies.

But the studies say nothing about how much people lose when they stay on Atkins more than a few months, whether they keep the weight off for good and whether their cholesterol rebounds when they stop losing weight.

Nevertheless, three decades of dietary gospel are in doubt, and those questioning it include some of the most prominent names in obesity research. For instance, one of the new studies was conducted by Dr. Foster with Dr. Samuel Klein and Dr. James Hill, the current and past presidents of the North American Association for the Study of Obesity, the premier professional group.

"I'm part of the obesity establishment," said Dr. Foster, who has published more than 50 scientific papers on the subject. "I've spent my life researching ways to treat obesity, and 100 per cent of them have been low-fat and high-carb. Now I'm beginning to think it isn't as it has appeared."

His Atkins study was intended to "show it doesn't work," yet after three months, the overweight men and women had lost an average of 19 pounds, 10 more than people on the standard high-carb approach.

The big surprise was cholesterol. The Atkins dieters' overall profile changed for the better. Although their bad cholesterol went up seven points, their good cholesterol rose almost 12. (Changes in the high-carb dieters were less dramatic. Their bad cholesterol went down slightly while their good cholesterol remained unchanged.)

The largest difference was in triglycerides. The Atkins dieters' dropped 22 points. The low-carb dieters' didn't budge.

"It was unexpected, to put it mildly," Dr. Foster said. "It made us think maybe there is something to this."

The Atkins diet still gives many health professionals the willies. It encourages people to eat bacon, butter and prime rib and lectures against such mainstay carbohydrates as grains, pasta and starchy vegetables, especially in the diet's first cold-turkey stage.

"There are many principles in the Atkins diet that go against what we know," said Dr. Robert Eckel of the University of Colorado, senior author of the heart association's policy on high-protein diets. "It keeps people away from staples of the diet that we know are associated with less heart disease."

Volumes of research suggest that people have the best chance of avoiding heart disease, high blood pressure and cancer if they eat a varied diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables and grains.

The Atkins camp argues that saturated fat is bad only if eaten with large amounts of carbohydrates. Otherwise, it's harmlessly burned off.

"When carbs are the primary fuel source, there are certain risks in excessive fat consumption," says Colette Heimowitz, the Atkins organization's research director. "But in a controlled-carb setting, when fat is the primary fuel source, the rules change."

So how do the traditionalists explain the cholesterol improvement seen in the Atkins dieters? Weight loss. Slimming down reliably improves cholesterol levels, and they say its benefits probably overshadowed any damage done by all the unhealthy fat.

Why people lose more weight on the diet is not clear, although some researchers say they buy one of Atkins' arguments: People stick with it because they are not constantly hungry.

A far more contentious Atkins idea is that people lose more weight on his plan even if they actually eat more calories. That violates the laws of thermodynamics, skeptics say.

"A calorie is a calorie as far as weight reduction is concerned," said Dr. Michael Davidson, director of preventive cardiology at the Rush Heart Institute in Chicago.

Or is it? Some of the new studies suggest otherwise.

Dr. Stephen Sondike of Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City put overweight teenagers on comparison diets for two months. The ones on Atkins lost twice as much as those on the low-fat diet. Yet they appeared to eat about 700 more calories a day.

Less dramatic but still startling results came from another study at the University of Cincinnati. Women on Atkins lost twice as much while eating the same number of calories as the low-fat dieters.

Researchers who did these studies still feel they know too little about the diet's long-term effects. A large new study will randomly put 360 overweight men and women on the Atkins plan or the U.S. Department of Agriculture's standard high-carb, low-fat diet, then watch them in detail for at least two years.”

My comment: Perhaps this study is the one I mentioned in the next post?

Friday, July 11, 2008

Exciting news for folks who cannot tolerate GLUTEN

Many people cannot tolerate wheat or wheat gluten, however, still many other people actually suffer from Celiac disease which is a lifelong disease of gluten intolerance once one has it. Celiac disease makes it impossible to tolerate wheat gluten and the gluten (a protein) found in rye and barley. Apparently, an immune response that should not happen causes damage to the lining of the small intestine, which in turn causes malabsorption of nutrients. This disease can occur at any age, however, diagnosis is often only made after many years when symptoms have become progressively worse. Untreated Celiac disease can lead to osteoporosis or autoimmune diseases.

The treament for Celiac Disease is a gluten-free diet. As reported by the Globe and Mail, by reporter Leslie Beck, oats have just been approved by the Canadian Celiac Association for people with Celiac disease. Adults can have ¾ cup dry oats per day and children can have ¼ cup. This makes life a little easier when it comes to low-carbing. Oat flour is almost as low in carbs as soy flour, the flour of choice in the recipes of the late Dr. Atkins. Keep an eye open on this blog for a gluten-free bake mix coming soon, which can be used to replace bake mixes in my cookbooks for those who cannot tolerate gluten. I already have a nut-free bake mix for those who are allergic to nuts, so it is high time to produce a gluten-free bake mix.

Note: To make your own oat flour: Place rolled oats (not minute) in a blender and blend until a powder forms.

Here are some other flours that were quoted by Leslie as okay for folks with Celiac disease:

Gluten-free grains and flours:
Amaranth
Arrowroot flour
Buckwheat
Chickpea flour
Cornmeal
Flaxseed
Green pea flour
Millet
Oats, pure uncontaminated
Quinoa
Popcorn
Potato flour
Rice
Rice flour
Soy flour

Here are very informative sites about many of the options: The Gluten Free Lifestyle and Gluten Free Options

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Helpful Dieting Tools

Sally Squire of the Washington Post, wrote about a study that was done on just over 1500 men and women 25 years and up. All were very overweight with complications that come with that such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

People lost enough weight to reduce those health problems, simply by learning about nutrition, having a support network through weekly meetings with others, and most importantly writing down everything they ate in a day. Fitday.com (free with option to purchase one's own program) is a great way to plug in foods eaten to get the nutritional analysis. It's more fun than doing it on paper or keeping a written journal.

It seems keeping journals (either on paper or online) and writing down what one eats is a valuable tool to learning what works and what doesn't. I think it would be helpful to put one's weight next to each day as well. Another helpful tool is to graph one's weight loss. Graphing gives a very vivid picture of the weight loss journey. Journals can also keep tabs on exercise routines, as well as recording whether water intake was good.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

*CONDENSED MILK AND WHITE, MILK AND DARK CHOCOLATE* (GF)

These recipes are from More Splendid Low-Carbing: I figured I can't give a recipe for melting chocolate without giving a chocolate recipe.

First, you'll need the Condensed milk recipe:

CONDENSED MILK
The consistency and taste is very similar to the real thing.

1/3 cup whipping cream
1/3 cup butter, softened
3 tbsp water
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup Splenda Granular
1/3 cup whey protein powder (vanilla or natural)
1/3 cup powdered milk (I use whole milk powder, but skim milk powder is fine too)
1/8 tsp my Thickening Agent, OR Xanthan Gum

In blender, place whipping cream, butter, water, vanilla extract, Splenda Granular, whey protein powder, milk powder and Thickening AgenT or Xanthan gum. Blend until smooth.

Yield: 1 1/8 cups
1 tbsp, 65.8 calories, 2.0 g protein, 5.6 g fat, 2.0 g carbs

Tip: This recipe will not work well in recipes that require heating or baking at high temperatures.

DELUXE WHITE CHOCOLATE
My son, Jonathan,loves this.

2 x Condensed Milk recipe above
2 oz cocoa butter, melted

In blender, prepare Condensed Milk (double all ingredients). In small cereal bowl, place cooca butter and melt in microwave oven about 3 minutes. Stir to ensure all cocoa butter has melted. Add to condensed milk mixture and blend until smooth. Pour into 8-inch square glass baking dish. Freeze until firm. Keep frozen. Thaw a few minutes before cutting.

Yield: 64 pieces
1 piece: 43.9 calories, 1.2 g protein, 3.9 g fat, 1.1 g carbs

Variations: Stir in blanched, chopped macadamias, hazelnutes or almonds.

DELUXE MILK CHOCOLATE: Omit cocoa butter and use 2 oz (2 squares) unsweetened chocolate. Use Chocolate Whey Protein powder, if desired in Condensed Milk. (1.3 g carbs)
DELUXE DARK CHOCOLATE: If desired, use 4 squares unsweetened chocolate for a more intense flavored chocolate. (1.4 g carbs)


Helpful Hints: If you have a source for unsweetened Belgian chocolate that could be even nicer. I've only ever tried this with Baker's unsweetened chocolate. One can play and have fun with this recipe. It's possible to make a layer of white chocolate and a top layer of milk chocolate.