Monday, June 13, 2011

Dietary Adjustments & Our Weekly Menu Plan

So it has been forever since I have posted a menu plan, with everything involved in getting this new house settled being so time consuming. I have still been planning, just not posting.  Now the flooring is down, the furniture is mostly into the living room, and we are finally starting to feel settled; so I feel like it is reasonable to spend time blogging again.

Everything involved in moving has really gotten the better of our sleep cycles, though. Couple that with having a baby and too much coffee and you have a serious case of adrenal fatigue.  To combat that, we are about to start going low-carb in a serious way. I have wanted to do this before, but I know that in order to keep your energy up, it is important to have a good source of healthy fats (you know, good butter [organic, but not grass fed, as we really do not have a cost effective source for this yet], and meats from grass fed animals with that nice, healthy, omega-3 rich fat, lots of eggs from hens on pasture), and we have not had a good source for any of those that was also economical until recently. NOW, we are making once-a-month trips to the Athens Farmers Market so we can stock up on good grass finished meats, raw cheese, and locally grown fresh organic produce. Our chickens are providing the eggs.

In addition to going low-carb, we are going gluten free, as of next Monday’s meal plan. We have been noticing some health issues that we thought we might try clearing up by living sans-gluten for a while. Since I have read that an allergic reaction to gluten can continue for 90 days after gluten is consumed, we are doing it for three months and then re-introducing gluten slowly to see what happens. While we usually avoid soy anyway, we are completely eliminating all un-fermented soy in any form (which makes gluten-free snacking a little tougher, but I found some nut-based “crackers” which are gluten-free and contain no soy…not an easy combo to find). We are also going to reduce even fermented soy consumption. You will see one Asian meal on the menu this week, for which we will use Tamari (a fermented soy sauce); but that will be the last one for a while.

The hardest thing for us in attempting to reduce carbs in the past has been snacking. So this time around, I am making sure to have veggies already cut up and eggs hard-boiled ahead of time, as well as roasting nuts (almonds, pistachios, pecans) ahead of time for snacking, too (We could just buy roasted nuts, but finding them without MSG can be tricky and costly).  We found some great artisanal raw milk cheeses at the farmer’s market, too, so we will have cheese for snacks as well.  Next week I am going to start planning breakfasts and lunches too, so that we can stick more easily to the low carb ideal.

As I understand it, low carb is limiting to no more than 60-80g of carbs per day.  So, if we happen to have a cereal for breakfast, there probably would not be a grain with lunch or dinner that day; but we are not going completely carb free or completely grain free. Quinoa, rice, and sweet potatoes will certainly grace our menu.

OK, without further ado, here is the plan:

Monday – Chicken (Slow-cooked in the crock pot, this is one of our backyard birds!), with potatoes, carrots, onions, celery, and of course PLENTY of garlic.

Tuesday – Dinner w/Jeff’s Mom

Wednesday – Pork Chops, Sweet Potato Fries, and salad

Thursday – Chicken Egg Rolls and Shrimp Fried Quinoa

Friday – Chuck Roast (again in the trusty crock-pot), Salad

Saturday – Fish Tacos (with wild-caught Cod)

Sunday – Whole Wheat Tagliatelle (last gluten-containing meal!!) with homemade tomato sauce, plus meatballs and sausage from the farmer’s market).  Originally I had this meal planned as “leftovers,” and I like to have one leftovers night per week….but it’s Father’s Day, and Jeff requested this amazing whole wheat/sun dried tomato tagliatelle we found made fresh by a vendor at the farmer’s market. Last time we had it with homemade pesto, but this time he wanted to try a tomato based sauce.

Breakfasts this week are going to be eggs and bacon, or eggs and smoothies.  Lunches will mainly be dinner leftovers, with some sandwich-less chicken salad thrown in there. Snacks will be celery and peanut butter, hard boiled eggs, and roasted nuts.

This post is part of Menu Plan Monday. Visit I'm An Organizing Junkie for more great menu ideas!

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