Month: January 2016

My twin sister joined WW yesterday.  We are both WW alums – both having lost 70+ pounds on the program back in 1999.   She tried to start a WW program at work – she only needed 15 members out of an office of over 100 (possibly more!)  365 and couldn’t drum up enough people.  But she didn’t let that stop her, she found another office in her building who offered an at work program, and was able to have the people interested in her office to join the other office.  That office even does a video hook up with their NY office so they can join the meeting remotely – how cool is that?

The only thing I’ve hated about WW is that every.single.year they come out with a new program.  I mostly realize it’s for current members to change things up, and also a way to get new member and well, let’s face it, sell new product!  I can’t tell you how many times I went to a WW meeting in January to see all these women lined up buying all the cereal bars, containers, journals etc., only to not see them three weeks from then.

So my sister found an online calculator that calculates the “smart point” of any given food or recipe.  Fiber is no longer on the table because fruits and vegetables are now zero points, even in baked goods, so they figure you’ll get enough fiber through that avenue.   OMG, back in the day my sister and I would scour the grocery store for the packaged foods that had the highest fiber value so it would end up being lower in points.  So crazy.  So what are they focusing on now?  Calories, saturated fat, sugar and protein.  That’s basically it.   I don’t know what the point range is, but my sister said that the lowest point range would be 30 points, and she gets about 27 flex points a week based on exercise, so that’s what I am going with for this illustration.

First up yesterday was my apple/granola/sugar free caramel parfait.  Shhhhh.  I cheated on Chobani.  I thought I had one more plain Greek yogurt in the fridge, but couldn’t find it, so stole one of Hannah’s Dannon Oikos triple zero vanilla yogurt.  It’s 120 calories and 15 grams of protein!  This parfait comes in at 349 calories, 12 fat, 51 carbs and 34 protein, or 12 Smart Points.

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So based on a 30 point day, that’s not too bad – just over 1/3 of my day.  I don’t eat many snacks – the only time I really do is if my blood sugar is really low.   But this breakfast kind of really spikes my blood sugar – and because of the vanilla yogurt vs. my plain Greek yogurt, this was almost too sweet for me and I ended up eating 3/4 of it.  When I left for my lunch time walk, my blood sugar was 248!   No worries, I was going on my walk at lunch, so that would bring it down.  Being that it was higher than I normally have it, I walked about a mile and a half from my office before turning around and heading back.  As soon as I got about 1/4 mile from the office, I could feel my blood sugar starting to drop, but it didn’t feel too bad – I just knew I’d have to put my lunch together as soon as I got back.

Well, my blood sugar was 49!!  How it dropped 200 points in a 45 minute walk is beyond me, but luckily I had everything chopped and prepped for my leftover pork loin tacos.  Six tortilla chips, 3 ounces of pork, 3/4 ounce of Cabot chipotle cheese, 1 tablespoon pomegranate seeds, baby spinach cilantro and Trader Joe’s avocado salsa.  With the carrots and cucumbers, lunch came in at 405 calories, 18 fat, 20 carbs, 5 fiber and 32 protein – or 11 Smart Points.

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But here’s the weird thing about having low blood sugar.  Obviously I don’t need to take insulin because I am trying to raise my blood sugar with food, but you want that feeling to go away so fast, that you just keep eating, and by the time I finished that plate, I realized I never compensated for the food after my blood sugar could have come around, and of course, then it was 303 when I tested it before hitting the gym after work.

So I ran/walked 1 mile, did 10 minutes of upper body, walked another mile, and then did 10 minutes of stretching.  When I got home my blood sugar was a perfect 111.

As I was driving home I realized I never put the beef roast in my crock pot for French dip beef sandwiches that I had on the menu.  I remembered that Cabot cheese sent me some Dreamfield’s Pasta and thought I had smoked turkey sausage in the fridge, and just like that, I decided that’s what I was making for dinner.  If it were just me and Jacob, I totally would have made a quick marinara sauce, but Hannah isn’t much of a fan.  I know I said I wasn’t going to be a short order cook anymore, and I am not, but it is nice to have a dish that all of us can eat, and one that is healthy to boot.

  • 3/4 box of Dreamfield’s pasta, cooked for 9 minutes and drained (about 8 ounces dry)
  • 12 ounces Eckrich smoked turkey sausage, sliced
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 cups broccoli, chopped
  • 2 cups baby spinach, chopped
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 2 ounces Cabot light cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 2 teaspoons chopped green onion (for Hannah and Jacob – how nice am I?!)

Cook the pasta for 9 minutes and drain.  Set aside.  While the pasta is cooking, put a large skillet over medium heat, and start to brown the sausage.  Add in the garlic and cook until it starts to get a bit brown, about 2-3 minutes.  Add in the butter and let melt.  Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute.  Slowly pour in the milk, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens – about 5 minutes.    Add in the chopped broccoli and cook for 2-3 minutes, just until the broccoli is tender.  Then remove from heat, stir in the shredded cheese, dried parsley and salt and pepper to taste.  Add back in the cooked pasta and toss to coat.  Each serving is about 3/4 cup of the pasta and 3 ounces of the sausage.

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Everyone gave this two big thumbs up.  It was just enough sauce to coat everything, but not too much, which probably brought down the calories a bit.  Wen I ran it into calorie count it ended up being 459 calories, 20 fat, 48 carbs, 6 fiber and 23 protein, or 14 Smart Points.

So if I were on WW I would have used 30 of my daily points and 7 points from my earned activity points.  Leaving me with just 20 extra points for the remaining 6 days.  I decided to hold off on my final WI for the month of January until Sunday the 31st, and I’ll post that on Monday.  But in just looking at my stats, I know I can do a bit better on the quality of the food I eat – not to say it isn’t healthy, but I’ve never really paid attention to saturated fat before.   We’ll see how it goes!

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So I had my next to last appointment with my doctors office to see if I qualify for the year long diabetic clinical trial.  The next step?  A continuous glucose monitor!  I’ was so excited when I read this in the initial information packet.  Basically it’s a sensor that goes under your skin that connects to a receiver.   I’ve always thought it would be so cool if you could just look down and see where you were at.   And even though I test my blood sugar at about the same times every day – pretty much before each meal and before I go to bed.  I’ve always wondered what my blood sugar stats would look like while I sleep.

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Oh hello muffin top!  Now you see where all my weight is – ha!  So that’s the monitor that sticks to my skin, but has a small sensor line that goes under the skin – didn’t hurt a bit.  In a week I was shown a video on how to take it out and then put it on the other side of my body.   They set up my machine at the doctors office, but it would take two hours before I could add in a calibrating blood glucose number from my regular test strip, so I wasn’t really shown how the receiver worked and didn’t even know what questions to ask, so I just took everything with me and decided I would figure it out later.

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That’s what it’s supposed to look like – my actual blood sugar at the top (90 in that photo above) and a chart showing the ups and downs of blood sugar over the course of a day.  What did mine look like?

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Huh.  I downloaded the instruction manual, did google searches and could not figure out how to see my stats.  So I texted that picture to my doctors office, and she replied back “that’s what it is supposed to look like – you can’t see the numbers because this is a double blind study.”  Rat farts.  So I suppose after the next two weeks if I don’t make it in the study I could possible ask for the results?  I may also look to see if my insurance company might cover this though.  I mean, wouldn’t it be in their best interest to help me control my diabetes better so I don’t have to spend money on doctors and hospitals later in life because I didn’t have such good control? 

So two weeks from today we’ll find out if I made it.  It’s such a fine line of having my A1C too low or too high – like .3 on the scale – so 7.2 to 7.5 is the A1C range they want me to be in.  I am at 7.3 now, but if it goes up to 7.6 or lower than 7.2 I don’t qualify.   But I figure it’s all for science, and I have to tell you that looking back, I don’t think I normally would check my blood sugar 4 times a day on a weekend – there have been times when I wake up on Monday and check my blood sugar, only to see my last reading was from Friday night – yikes!  So for that reason alone, this has been a positive experience.

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  I am off to make a spinach and egg white omelet, hash browns, light turkey sausage and sliced fruit for breakfast, which will be 8 Smart Points.  Open-mouthed smile

Hope you have a wonderful weekend – come back Monday for my January WI.  And for those of you who have asked, Joe and I are still alcohol free for the month.  Open-mouthed smile