Houston – we have a problem

Ahem – short story is: I’ve gained 15 lbs. The reason? I could lay blame at the doorstep of a number of things, but the reality is that I chose to do so. Nothing ever accidentally fell into my mouth.

This is the first time since 2003 that this has occurred. It’s not because I’m doing low carb – it’s because I’m *not* doing it.

So today – like many folks out there – I am committing to lose that weight, and a bit more. I kept my weight at 180-185. Now I want to get to 170. That’s 25 lbs.

Can I do it? Jeez – I blog about low carb, so I certainly think I know something about doing it.

Now I have to prove it.

So here’s my commitment – I will be 170 by August 1.

Can he do it folks? Or is he just full of hot air (along with the pizza he shouldn’t have had yesterday)?

Stay tuned…

Recipe – Chicken Tortilla Soup

Reworked a bit from the original – I removed a lot of steps.

Chicken Tortilla Soup
4 lbs chicken thighs
4 medium onions, quartered
8-10 stalks celery chopped
1 bulb garlic
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 can chicken broth
chili powder
lemon pepper
6-8 hot green chilies, chopped
olive oil
1/2 stick butter

Chop vegetables and place in 5 quart crock pot
Cover with chicken thighs
Cover those with the seasonings
Cover that with the tomatoes and chicken broth
Toss half a stick of butter on that.
Cook on high for at least 8 hours.

Serve with dollops of sour cream.
Best served with corn tortilla chips for those not on a low carb diet – pork rinds for those who are. In real-world testing it came out quite good, and my wife went back for seconds – her highest culinary complement.

Recipe -Easy Brussels Sprouts and Bacon

I don’t have a lot of time to cook, so I take a minimalist approach. Here’s a simple recipe with 3 ingredients that is easy for the low carb cook.

Easy Brussels Sprouts and Bacon

3 bags frozen Brussels sprouts
1 package bacon
1/2 stick butter.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees
-place Brussels sprouts at bottom of sprayed pan
-layer bacon over top. If frozen beforehand, defrost in microwave in package at high for 1-1/2 minutes.
-cover with pats of butter equal to 1/2 stick
– cook for an hour cover in foil
– uncover for 15 minutes and cook
Alternately, just cook for an hour and 15 minutes.

It might sound odd, but grated cheese or sour cream make a nice complement to this. Try it

Recommended – Lindt Excellence 85% Cocoa Dark Chocolate

I was never a big fan of dark chocolate – until I had some Lindt Excellence 85% Cocoa Dark Chocolate. This is real chocolate with only 5 grams of carbs for 4 big squares. Why settle for fake chocolates full of sugar alcohols that cause many people to stall, cost a lot, and don’t taste all that great? Lindt chocolate is all natural, extremely high quality, and is no more expensive than the stuff sold to low carb dieters.

I couldn’t find it on their website, but you can find it in their stores as well as well-stocked grocery stores.

Top it all off that cocoa has been touted as having many health benefits – you can read about that here.

The Low Carb – Dental Connection

Can a low carb lifestyle be good for your dental health?

A moment’s reflection says ‘yes’.

Sugar is one of the main culprits in causing tooth decay. Tooth decay is one indicator of poor dental health. Poor dental health has been shown to increase the chances for heart disease or stroke. The connection, as I understand it, is that your dental health impacts your whole body and the bacteria that accumulate in your mouth can enter your bloodstream and cause inflammation in your blood vessels. This inflammation has been shown to be a contributor to heart attacks.

Actually, there is a school of thought that believes that cholesterol does not play a major role in heart disease as much as inflammation does. As I saw my cholesterol decrease when I went on a low carb diet, maybe the fear that low carb diets cause high cholesterol which in turn cause heart disease is totally wrong.

So what I’ve done is gotten rid of the sugar, and focused a bit more on dental health. It’s a lot cheaper than statins, and might be healthier.

Oh – do keep in mind that one side effect of my low carb lifestyle was splitting a tooth in half. My dentist was amazed that something like this could happen to a cavity-free tooth until he found out I incessantly munched almonds. I had switched from macadema nuts because they were so expensive. He made a valid point – buying the macadema nuts, which are much softer, would have been cheaper in the long run than the crown I am going to need.

I’m buying the macedema nuts again.