The message of this week was ‘replace sugar with fat’ and oh wow did we do that. Hello cheese, hello full fat milk, hello butter, hello avocados and nuts! All being eaten everyday, at almost every meal of the day. This was definitely a bit of a change to my lifestyle, however, I completely understand why fat is so necessary in our diets, and watching the IQS videos this week confirmed this for me. This week the meals felt ‘heavier’ there was a definite increase in fats and protein and probably a slight decrease in carbs. This may not actually be the case, this is just what I am instinctively feeling since I don’t measure macronutrients apart from ensuring I eat from all food groups. Overall, week two was good. I enjoyed the new recipes, with only one that was a bit of a miss. One thing that is for certain is that there was a definite upping of the vegetable intake – which I loved. I am definitely noticing more vegetables on my plate – my instagram wall is looking much greener! Here is my low down of Week Two…
What I Ate: Breakfasts alternated between a breakfast abundance bowl or buttery mushrooms. The idea of asparagus for breakfast did not really thrill me, nor do soggy greens, however I surprised myself immensely by really enjoying this vegetable packed bowl – so much so that I had it three mornings in a row! I loved how light and full of energy I felt afterwards. I was proud that I stuck to the programme and gave it a go. It will probably become a favourite of mine on days when I don’t like the breakfast of choice. The mushrooms, however, took a lot more convincing. Having not liked the texture for years, I could not bring myself to try the dish until Thursday. At this stage, I had seen everyone’s great reviews online and stories of people similar to me – who don’t like mushrooms but really enjoyed the dish. Before I got to mushrooms however, I had to deal with my SERIOUS porridge cravings. Likely caused by the fact that I have gone from having it every day to not at all. I figured as I don’t sweeten my porridge it was fine to eat. So I had a bowl of carrot cake porridge, with added courgettes (still getting two servings of vegetables in) and a big spoonful of peanut butter for my healthy fats. I really enjoyed this breakfast and it felt so indulgent (I’m not sure why) so I figured it could be a good one to save for days when I was struggling on the programme.
Lunch/Dinner: As lunch was leftovers it is easy to deal with these together! We’ve still had the vegetable intake up this week, lots of root vegetables, leafy greens and cabbage! Must say I am really enjoying the leafy greens more (especially cooked which I never used to like) and crispy kale in the pan – a definite favourite. The meals felt quite substantial this week and I did not snack at all. I’m quite proud of this progression as last week I really struggled with hunger and cravings between meals. Except for this weekend when I just felt ‘snacky’ the whole time. I still kept up my vegetarian alternatives – I am completely in love with these chickpea meatballs from Nutrition Stripped – and just added more vegetables. Meal of the week was definitely the vegetarian beetroot burgers! They were super fulling and loved by the meat eaters of the household. I really enjoyed eating something so vibrant – and see the pictures below of my ‘superfood burger bowl’ – a great use for my leftovers!
What I am Missing: I know I have already said it but I will say it again porridge. And a bit of fruit. All the summer fruits are just coming into season i.e. my absolute favourites like strawberries, apricots, peaches…. I am drooling just typing this. Not missing the actual bad sweet stuff too much, only when I can see people with it.
How I felt: This week I definitely felt better. Saying no to treats was easier because I had it ingrained in my head – I turned down chocolate at a university lecture on the day of a test! Look at that willpower! Saying no to fruits, however, has been harder than expected. I didn’t think I actually ate that much fruit, but I think the fact that it is off limits now just means I am thinking about it more. This week we did see some heavier meals (all those healthy fats) which made me feel a bit more sluggish, but this could also be some University stress kicking in. I love that the programme tries to balance this out with lots of light vegetables and leafy greens, but having gone from being mostly meat free, eating minimal cheese and dairy free prior to starting the programme and now going back into full fat dairy and a whole lot of cheese has been a big of a change for my body. I am committed to this experiment and seeing how I go, since I don’t like to pick one ‘type’ of eating so at the moment (expect for cutting out most meat) I am going to follow the principles of the programme and see how I go.
Physical Changes: So far the physical changes have been interesting. What most people are probably interested in is weight loss. I have lost around 2-3 kilos so far – but I did not have any goals to lose weight. What I am very happy about is the improvements in my skin. It looks more vibrant and is a lot smoother. Apart from that, I am still waiting to see if my nails strengthen up or if my hair feels any different. But having always struggled with bad skin, it’s nice to have it feeling so smooth and radiant!
Emotional Changes: Less of an emotional rollercoaster this week. Feeling a bit more centred, with less ups and downs and an overall feeling of being content without sweet treats. I’ve decided that I only feel like sweet things when I can see them, so it’s simply a matter of avoiding the temptation and I don’t have any problems. On Thursday, I had my first day where I didn’t feel like sweet things after lunch or dinner, I didn’t have any craving symptoms and it felt like such a huge achievement! I haven’t had one slip up on the programme so far and this achievement is a great thing to keep me going.
Hope this is interesting and not too rambl-ey for you all! Happy to answer any questions on the programme or just in general – let me know in the comments below!