Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Potato salad recipe (and the wonders of resistant starch!)

Like many other diabetics, I have to tread carefully with white potatoes. The high carbohydrates and high GI nature of potatoes means that they push my blood sugar up - even though they are nutritious and delicious! That is, unless I eat them in potato salad.  So why are cold potatoes different to warm potatoes? Its all because of a wonderful component called resistant starch.
So what is resistant starch? 
Resistant starch is a type of dietary fibre that is fermented in the large bowel and feeds the gut microbiome - the bacteria in your bowel that do so much good. Despite the messages to eat more fibre, and people are doing that, most people are increasing their fibre with processed foods like cereals, which don't necessarily contain resistant starch. More fibre yes, but all the great health benefits, no.  There is evidence that a healthy gut microbiome plays a role in preventing diabetes, obesity and some cancers, and may even have a role in mental health, so it’s worth taking a moment to understand how to keep it healthy. So rather than just eating any kind of fibre, we particularly need to be eating more resistant starch for a healthy gut and a healthy body.
So where do you find resistant starch? 
It can be found in some starchy fruits and vegetables (eg bananas and sweet potatoes), in legumes (have I told you how awesome beans, chick peas and lentils are lately?) and interestingly,  in some cooked and cooled starchy foods. Cooking and cooling starchy foods like rice, pasta and potatoes, and eating them cold, lowers the GI and increases the amount of resistant starch. Add some healthy fats and lemon juice and you lower the GI further – so when it is too warm to eat beautiful lentil soups and chick pea curries, change to summer starch foods like potato salad, rice salad and pasta salad!

Add lentils to your meals, cook and cool some rice to add to salads, diced and roast some sweet potatoes to throw in everything – there are loads of easy ways to get slow burning energey and make your bowel bugs happy at the same time.
For resistant starch goodness, add
lentils and beans to everything!
For more interesting information on resistant starch check out this post from Precision Nutrition here:
All about resistant starch

Most potato salads have heavy creamy dressings which are often also quite sweet and can stack on the calories with unnecessary fats. Not mine! So I guess I should share my magical potato salad recipe too!





Ingredients:
white potatoes (you can add sweet potatoes as well for added colour and flavour)
2 hard boiled eggs
Greek yoghurt
red onion
fresh parsley
dijon mustard
whoelgrain mustard
honey

I haven't listed amounts here as you can really fiddle with this until it tastes right for you.

Method:
Roughly chop your potatoes ad steam them with skins on until tender. You can get lower GI potatoes called Carisma from Coles) but any potatoes will work for this. Adding orange sweet potato (kumara) will make it extra interesting! 

Hard boil two eggs, chop them up and pop them in the fridge to cool, along with your potatoes. About an hour in the fridge or half an hour in the freezer should do the trick.

Finely dice a red onion, a bunch of fresh parsley. If you want extra bursts of flavour you could also add chopped gherkins, capers, capsicum, a tin of corn or even a little bacon. 

For the dressing mix a cup of plain Greek yoghurt with a tablespoon of dijon mustard, a tablespoon of grain mustard and a drizzle of honey.  Mix well then fold the dressing through the potatoes, eggs, onions and herbs.

Serve with a quarter of lemon to squeeze on the side. Left overs will keep in the fridge for 2 days or so (if you don't eat it all first!)

Bon appetit!


Potato salad makes a delicious and nutritious side dish




















Monday, September 28, 2015

The LGH e-book is LIVE


So after three years of a Facebook page with 25,000 followers, two years of a blog with over 45,000 views and now dozens of people saying "I wish you would put all these tips together and write a book" - I did it!  The Lean Green and Healthy eBook has been launched and is so far proving to be very popular. 

This is a fad-free lifestyle manual for not just losing weight, but also gaining health.
Chapters include: 
Why are we all getting fatter? 
What diet should I be following? 
What does a balanced meal look like? 
What about sueprfoods? 
What about exercise? 
Motivation tips and a selection of my favourite recipes. 

To keep prices down I have published it as an eBook. You can get it on Amazon as a text only, or direct from me for a colour PDF - which you can read on iPad, iPhone, android (using PDF reader, ibooks or the kindle app) or on your computer. 

Hey, you can even print it yourself if you want to!

So if you want to join the happy LGH club and get all the tips at your fingertips, go to  http://bit.ly/LGHebook and order using credit  card, debit card or your PayPal account. Once payment is received you will be emailed the download link within 24 hours. 

The book is priced at $AUD 9.99 (which is around $7 USD) so I think it's a pretty good deal!

Have you already bought the book? Let me know what you think in the comments below. I'm excited!

Thanks for your support
Lyndal@ LGH













Sunday, September 27, 2015

Baby Shower!

I had a super lovely shower on a perfect autumn day - my family threw it, the decorations and food were awesome! Lots of friends came, too, and I had fun (friends - with the guys! - came over later that night to have some drinks and finish off the leftover cookies and cake pops from the shower, it was a nice way to finish the day :D ).

Some pics:




My sister-in-law and I wore the same dress!!



Successful shower! Lots of adorable forest themed items for the baby, too, so the nursery is coming along great. I'm going to take an inventory of what I need to get now for the baby, so more basic clothes and first aid/bathing type supplies.

My doctor appointments last week all turned out well. My platelets are still low, but the hematologist thanks they aren't low enough right now to warrant any concern, and thinks that it is just gestational. They are going to continue to draw my blood at my appointments, keep an eye on it, and have me back after I give birth to make sure everything returned to normal.

Also - the baby is growing right on schedule! Even a little bit ahead of the curve. I'm so glad all is well and healthy :)

I'm exhausted and not sleeping well at all anymore - I'm taking today (Sunday) easy, writing thank you notes, doing a little baby stuff organizing, and enjoying another incredibly beautiful fall day at home. I went to the barn and took a short walk with my horse in the morning, the place is gorgeous this time of year.



That's all for now!! I'm hanging in there, making the best of this time, and trying to rest a little bit too, haha.

Namaste friends <3

Sunday, September 20, 2015

More Photos - 32 weeks pregnant

The wedding was fun - it was on beautiful Lake Champlain! I'm tired today but still ran errands and visited the neighborhood street fair, which was also great!

Some pics:

At the wedding-


At the fair and surprised by my stranger shadow! -


32 weeks today. Time is moving so slowly AND so fast, it's strange. Doing a little work on the nursery today :)

Namaste <3

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Trying to fit it all in!

Obviously blogging had to fall by the wayside - but rest assured, not much has changed for me!

I lost a lot of my 2nd trimester energy and have been feeling very lightheaded/dizzy. Turns out my platelet levels have dropped below the normal range again - my OBGYN is having me go see a hematologist for testing, monitoring and potentially a transfusion before I'm due. I can't get an epidural if my levels are this low (I haven't decided I definitely want an epidural - but I want the option!!).

Also - the baby has been measuring small so I'm getting an ultrasound next week to check on it's development. The doctor assured me it's probably nothing - human error in measuring my belly or the baby was turned sideways, etc. I'm looking forward to making sure everything is okay, though!

So- my life is work, schoolwork, house chores and getting the nursery ready. I'm working hard to make sure life is as ready as it can be when the baby comes!!

I've been decently sedentary aside from my walking (9-10k steps) because of all the lightheadedness. Sometimes I feel like I can't breathe! So no additional working out for now - it's hard enough just to vacuum!!

I have a wedding to attend today - and then MY baby shower next week (excited!). Will try to post more in the interim!

Monday, September 7, 2015

Some Pregnant Pics

Today is my two year anniversary - Little more low-key than last year, because I'm pretty tired. I'm definitely entering another phase of pregnancy, and I'm struggling with my blood pressure and dizziness a lot more again. So taking it easy!

We went and visited Edith Wharton's home in Lenox, Massachusetts, to stroll the gardens and the historic house. We ate sandwiches and drank lemonade on the terrace overlooking the gorgeous gardens. It was a really nice afternoon, but I had to come home and lay down for a while to recoup. Going out for dinner at our favorite local spot tonight :)

Some pics of me pregnant (30 weeks now!):



Feeling pretty good about my pictures lately, even if it is weird to see this big belly preceding me everywhere!! Just enjoying this baby feeling more substantial now :)

Back to resting before dinner!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Never Comfy and Frozen Dinners

Not posting a ton because, truly, my brain just does not work anymore. I am never comfortable which means I'm really not sleeping. And sleep deprivation is not good for my creativity. I'm pouring all of my available energies and efforts into my dissertation, so this blog, which has so helped me in the past, isn't getting much attention. And I could really use a good outlet!

I am still not used to sleeping on my side, even though I've been doing it for about six months now. I have a body pillow that I use, but it doesn't change the fact that my shoulders just do not like being slept on. I've been waking up 5 to 7 times a night (usually to use the restroom, but also because of being in physical discomfort). If one shoulder hurts too much, I'll sleep on the other side to get back to sleep. But lately, my hips have been killing me, and I can find no relief.

The other night I woke at 2 AM with hip pain, and try to get back to sleep for almost an hour, before I decided to just get up, recognize that I was not falling asleep with that kind of pain, and started to do some stretches and exercises to find some relief for my poor muscles! Not fun.

But at least I won't be too shocked when the baby comes and I'm sleep deprived! I've been living that way for a few months already, haha :)

I am just very tired - and home alone this week. Food prep for this week means that I am eating chicken burgers and butternut squash for lunch every day, grapes, carrots, and yogurt for snacks. I switch back-and-forth between cereal with flax milk and banana for breakfast and my usual cottage cheese with sunflower seed butter and blueberries. 

For dinner, I totally went to super easy route, and got some frozen dinners (from Amy's- Mexican and Indian). I just simply do not have the energy to make dinner when I come home, deal with the dog and get the house cleaned up, before writing my dissertation. I hope not to rely on frozen dinners in the future, but this week, I simply didn't have it in me. I had to admit that... I'm starting to get overwhelmed and weepy! Adding dinner prep, cooking and dish washing was the sacrifice this week.

In bed by 8 pretty much every night (and I get home around 5:20 from work, so you can see that I really don't have a lot of time to spare in the evening) and up around 6 to walk the dog.

Making what fits, fit. Doing what I can, and try not to get too down on myself that I'm not the picture of health and fitness and clean living right now!