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Monica Bielanko
A chronicle since 2005 of my marriage & move to Brooklyn in my twenties; becoming a mother in my thirties; moving to Pennsylvania and learning to amicably coparent after divorce in my forties while living 3 doors down from my ex-husband in a small country town.
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Friday
Jul222011

Pardon Me... But Can You Rub This Sausage All Over My Body?

I remember the day I heard about the no-carb diet. It was as mind-blowing as my first orgasm, I kid you not.

You mean, eating a crapload of sausage and mayonnaise will actually help me lose weight?

I couldn't wrap my brain around the idea. It seemed too good to be true. Then I heard the kicker, the extremely horrifying kicker: What do you mean, bread makes me fat? It's just bread? Toast too? Does that count? Garlic bread? Please don't say garlic bread... Oh my God! Tortillas? NOT TORTILLAS! How will I eat burritos?

I couldn't quite digest (excuse the pun) the concept of simple carbs vs. complex carbs and the fact that white rice wasn't exactly healthy for me. Rice? It's just rice! It's just tiny little specks of nothing. It turns into sugar? What? It's rice, not sugar!

Anyway, like you, your sister and probably your Uncle Joe, I hopped on board the carb-free train and was full steam ahead. And it worked. I have a very distinct memory of gluttonously dipping sausage into a vat of mayonnaise - as my granola-loving roommate looked on in horror - and loving it. I may or may not have taunted my roommate by pretending to do naughty things with the sausage...

I don't know what happened but eventually, like the rest of the world, I lost interest and moved on. Until recently. It's been a really stressful couple of months and Serge and I have taken to having a beer or four in the evenings to unwind. I'd like to blame it on the fact that we have this really kick ass porch and it would be a travesty, A TRAVESTY, I SAY, if we did not enjoy a beer on the porch, but really, I just like downing a cold one after the little ones are in bed. Also, the fellas at the pizza joint down the street know us better than our own families.

My point is - yes, there really is a point - after a month of beer swilling - plus a week of trekking across the country inhaling fast food on the go - Serge and I aren't in the greatest of shape. Oh, don't get me wrong, we are still super sexy but, you know, we could stand to lose a few. My inner voice is constantly berating me for my food choices. And then I yell back at my inner voice, "I know! But I'm too tired to whip up an entire dinner!"

As it turns out, a couple friends of ours here in Pennsylvania are looking better than ever and when we inquired as to how they stay so fit they both simultaneously responded with "Atkins".

I thought it had gone the way of Suzanne Somers and her Thighmaster, but here were to living breathing human beings - who look fantastic - still riding the carb-free train.

It got my wheels to turning, and now I'm secretly trying to phase out the breadier, rice-type portions of our meals. But, it's so hard! We eat a lot of rice! It's the staple of Serge's Famous Stir Fry. It provides a delightful bed for the chicken, jalapenos, ginger and green onions to luxuriate upon!

So now, like pretty much 90% of parents everywhere, I've come to dread the question "What's for dinner". Because I don't know! I'm all flummoxed again. I know, I know, you're just supposed to watch your calories and not eat too much, everything in moderation and all that crap. But I'm still looking for a shortcut - at least to jump start losing this baby weight - so save your exercise advice (for now) and tell me this: have you ever done the absolutely no carb thing? What was your experience? Serge and I are considering going carb-less come August 1 and we wanted to know what y'all thought.

Our big weight loss plans coincide with this new Inner Voice campaign by Hillshire Farm. And guess what? The commercial features Wendi McLendon-Covey from only the best movie of the year: Bridesmaids. Hillshire Farm is sponsoring this post and, quite honestly, may be sponsoring a bunch of meals 'round these parts if I can listen to my own damn inner voice, get my no-carb act together and finally kiss the rest of this baby weight goodbye.

Do you think there is a real Hillshire Farm somewhere? Serge and I spent an embarrassingly large amount of time wondering.

Anyway, Hillshire Farm out on Facebook, they have some pretty excellent carb-free recipes (this one in particular is getting me all hot and bothered) and they make bacon. BACON. If you don't like bacon I'm not sure if I'm inviting you to my next sleepover. Because, bacon? I could eat bacon-flavored anything. Did you know there is bacon flavored chocolate bars? Swear to God! And they are good. I could get really dirty with a bacon flavored chocolate bar. Literally. Because it's been really hot lately and if I tried to eat a bacon flavored chocolate bar it would just melt everywhere and then I'd be really sticky and gross and I'd have to shower.

Reader Comments (40)

I've never done Atkins mainly because I was anorexic in high school and any extreme fad diet brings out bad behavior in me. BUT every SINGLE person I've known who has done Atkins has lost a shit ton of weight, BUT they've ALL gained it back plus 5 pounds within six months after stopping Atkins. If you do Atkins, I think you have to do it forever. I'm sure people will come on here and rave about it and all that. My observations have been that the loss is super temporary and that it jacks with your metabolism in the long run.

July 22, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterjeneria

OH MY. monica, you need quinoa. i eat almost 100% gluten free and quinoa is a wonderful alternative to rice; it's also a complete protein.

here are a couple of bread-free recipes from my old food blog. i now blog at plumsintheicebox.typepad.com

stuffed tomatoes: http://masteroffineeats.blogspot.com/2011/01/props-to-rachael-rays-assistant-stuffed.html

chicken and vegetables in packets: http://masteroffineeats.blogspot.com/2011/01/chicken-vegetables-in-foil-packets.html

roasted vegetable casserole: http://masteroffineeats.blogspot.com/2010/12/briami-roasted-vegetable-casserole.html

also try frittatas and omelets!! also, i've been hearing that grated cauliflower can be a great subsitute for rice; i just used it to make a totally low-carb and gluten free pizza crust and it was delicious.

July 22, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercarrie

I still do Atkins every now and again! When I'm feeling all bloated and doughy I cut out all things white, sticky and doughy, that's my rule. After two weeks of hardcore Atkins I go back to "healthy" eating, meaning minimal bread type products.

July 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGemma

Atkins is just like any other fad diet--impractical and potentially dangerous in the long term. Yes, I've tried it, and it caused major heart racing and palpitations. Why? Because you're not eating a balanced diet, and filling your body with excessive amounts of protein. Sure, you'll drop weight. And then...you'll gain it all back, which only screws up your metabolism more. Yes, I know there are people (mostly women) who swear by it. Even so, I've never met a truly healthy person who does. Sorry guys...calls it like I sees it.

If you want to see a dramatic shift in your health, focus on one toxic ingredient at a time. Start by cutting out HFCS, and I guarantee you'll wind up eating more fruits, veggies, and less processed food in general. You'll also drop weight, fast. And hopefully, once you realize how good it feels to eat natural, whole foods, you'll keep moving in that direction.

The thing about short cuts? They really don't work. You are what you eat...and I kind of doubt you want to be a mayo covered slab of beef. Just sayin.

PS: You may want to check out Food Inc--I suspect it might be right up your alley.

I'm still here. Just biding my time, lady. Just biding my good old time.

July 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterState College Tick

I started off with Food Addicts Anonymous... but the were a bunch of crazy witches so I just kept doing it on my own... no flour, no sugar, no booze. I've lost 190 pounds (I was 407) and kept it off going on . My daughter (now 16) has lost 70 pounds doing the same thing.

Basically it's just about being smart. We don't nom on anything we call "triggers' (I'll have a piece of chocolate cake for a special occasion but will never, EVER let Corn Pops or Sugar Smacks cross my lips again). We eat tons of fresh fruit and veggies (expensive as hell though) and enjoy the nuts, meats and cheese. You will be amazed if you start watching labels for sugar content.

Started all of this two years ago and we're still fine... but yes, if we were to start eating the flour and sugar with abandon - we'd blow right back up... so it is about the choices.

I can send you recipes and before & afters if it will help. My kids friend said I look like a mountain with a tiny head... haha. There are all kinds of ways you can trick yourself into thinking you're eating the bad stuff when it's really just normal food.

Good luck to both of you!

July 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLaura B

i can't not chime in and say "don't do it." the atkins diet in it's true form is not good for you. i've read a lot lately about an alternative (which is very similar to atkins) referred to as "paleo" but, it's not a diet, it's a lifestyle. i know that's cliche but, unless you're planning on eating shit atkins approved foods for the rest of your life and nothing else then, i would recommend approaching the task with a sustainable plan. eat less. eat wholesome foods and eat clean. don't drink calories. that's my approach anyway. it works. i exercise regularly but, i know from experience that weight loss is possible just by making dietary changes. someone already mentioned quinoa, i second that recommendation. it's called super food! be careful and take care of yourself.

p.s. thanks for writing.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteremily

There's Atkins and then there's ATKINS, and I've done both and every shade of capitalization in between, and I love the low carb stuff. ONLY because it f-ing works, and you get to eat real food while it works. And when I get past the whiny, poor me, what is life without milkshakes stuff then its fab. Also, its most fab when I realized that when I'm having a hard time on it I just need to focus on the veggies instead of the heavy, meaty eggy cheesy stuff. And when all else fails, pick up some light wheat bread and work that in for awhile.
Finally, I didn't cut out booze indefinitely. Long term, I more settled into having things that weren't really high carb like beer. Oh, and my favorite Atkins things are quiche kept in the fridge for easy breakfasts, and chicken and tuna salad in half of a tomato.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterErin

I've never done Atkins, but my dad and his wife did several years ago to lose some weight. They lost a TON of weight, super quickly...buuut..they were super mean then entire time they were on it. I mean they're mean anyway, but they were EXTRA mean. And, they gained it back plus more as soon as they were even a little bit lax about it.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMorgan

I am coming out of lurkdom to tell you about these awesome cookbooks I found by Maria Emmerich that you can find on Amazon. She takes stuff you love to eat and makes it low carb and delicious...Over the past few months, I have changed drastically the way I eat. I used to do Atkins way back when but got bored with it because of lack of ideas but since then I started following a few low carb blogs and some peeps on You tube that have some awesome looking food. For instance, cauliflower crust pizza?! Why did I never think of that? It is freakin' awesome! For lunch, I do some kind of a roll up with sugar free lunch meat (it's hard to find but if you look you will find it!) veggie cream cheese, sprouts, avocado, green onion and tomato...also instead of using noodles, I use a julienne peeler and make zucchini noodles. Just as yummy...you can use cauliflower for rice too, just grate it and steam it in the microwave. Breakfast is usually eggs with some kind of salsa, greek yogurt and a turkey sausage patty...oh avocado too....avocados are a staple in my house! I would eat them all day if I could. anyhoo, so check out those cookbooks! if you google HCG phase 3 recipes too you will get some good ideas.Since starting I have lost 32 pounds and I feel awesome!! Just so you know, A, it is not cheap to eat like this, geez I spend half my life at the store now and infinitely more money, B. You will spend much more time in the kitchen...which is hard esp. when you have little ones.(I have to put out bowls of pasta and spoons, and whisks etc. to keep my 2 year old in check!) There is a payoff though, you will have more energy! Good luck!

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShel

oh forgot to mention ezekiel bread or sprouted grain breads, as much protein as eggs and super yummy. Ezekiel break comes in tortillas, english muffins, sliced bread and I think buns. I take the tortillas, bake until crispy and make chips out of them. Pure awesomeness!

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShel

I realise that Atkins in its intended form is apparently not "all meat all the time", but I still doesn't seem quite that healthy to me. First of all I get maaaaajor PMS issues (try boobs hurting for an entire fortnight) when I eat too much meat. Generally, I think eating balanced instead of dieting is the way to go. Both my wife and I have a tendency towards diabetes so we try to cut out the simple sugars (doesn't always work of course, but we try), use agave syrup instead of white sugar etc. We've also switched out our beloved pasta for whole-grain pasta which if you think about it has a lot more taste anyways. We have quinoa, bulgur, cous cous and even khorasan wheat grits. Occasionally we have rice, white rice even :) These are all complex. We eat veggies by the bucket, sometimes completely carb-free meals. i.e. grilled slices of yellow zucchini topped with a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar and grate some parmesan on top - that's a super yummy summer dinner that works cold as well. or just go for corn on the cob with a bit of butter and salt.

From what you write I get the feeling that you might be eating a lot of processed food. If that is the case - don't. it's fucking bad for you. and I agree with the above poster: eating natural unprocessed foods will make you feel much better. you end up eating more consciously and thus overindulging less. and you'll lose weight. sure, not as fast as with a diet but you'll actually stay healthy and not put it back on once you stop dieting, because you've changed your habits.

and psssst, I hate to say it but: exercise help. a lot :)

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermccutcheon

I don't do Atkins because I don't eat meat, but I have done South Beach with success (chicken & fish are fine for me). South Beach, while not allowing bread for the first 2 weeks, does allow you to phase it in (no white bread or white rice ever though, just the good whole grain kind). Eat brown rice. Brown is much better for you, has a better taste & a "toothier" bite.

Weight-Watchers allows you to eat everything you want and is successful because it's how much, not what. And you can do it online.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCarole

Hubby and I go back and forth about healthy eating. We have periods of time that we're really into it, and then life gets in the way, and we go back to simple, unhealthy meals.

But when we are eating healthy, we basically go by the Primal Blueprint diet (similar to paleo). It differs from Atkins in that you can eat healthy fat. Lots of protein and veggies, healthy fats (coconut oil, whole milk, heavy cream, butter, etc.), barely any bread/carby stuff, dairy if your body handles it well. And a little bit of white potatoes here and there once we've hit your goal weights. When we do that, the weight just melts off. And we have so much more energy and are so much more healthy.

When we started out on this track we implemented it slowly. First stopped drinking soda. Then stopped having pasta or bread or rice on the side. Then focused on eating a lot more veggies. My husband is a bread lover, and he thought it would be hard, but when he saw how much better he felt it wasn't so bad. Oh and another caveat- the Primal Blueprint goes by the 80% rule- you try to eat like that 100% of the time, but realistically if you do it 80% of the time you're gonna see results. (Geez, I'm sounding like a spokesperson or something...lol).

Like someone said above though- the Primal Blueprint is a lifestyle. Eating that way is just part of it. They also advocate getting more exercise (but low level stuff like walking, not "chronic cardio"), getting enough sleep, relaxing, spending time outside in the sun, etc.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCC

okay isn't sausage loaded with waxy chunks of lard and do you want that in your system?Isn't sausage good friends with white rice and Italian bread?dipped in a nice I-talian sauce!? YUM...okay back to sausage.I'm waffling on that...WAFFLES! Bacon i can see...turkey bacon is nice. With scrambled eggs. Rye toast buttered...with seeds! mmmmmmEnough! So...I was all set to get crackin' on Atkins read Morgan's comment on her mean parents going super mean. What's with that? I lean towards veg/fruits/protein foods/ lots of water. I have heard of Ezekiel bread that its rich in protein and fiber. You probably have all kinds of fruit and veggie stands out there?II would not cut out ice cold beer ( with lemon/ lime) on porch alternating with iced tea or iced lemon water.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered Commentergina

In addition to the great comments, I have lost 30+ lbs and kept it off by following some basic guidelines:

*Do not ban any foods. If you do you will fixate on it and binge. Ditto for Atkins. Tried it and binged on carbs and ended up heavier.

*Alcohol can be had no more than 3 times per week. Limiting alcohol is the fastest way to drop weight.

*Dessert can be had no more than 2 timers per week.

*Snack on protein rich foods, like trader joe's turkey jerky, raw almonds, hummous with carrots.

*Limit red meat consumption. Learn to love chicken and fish, if you can.

*Try and eat at least 5 veggies/fruits per day.

*Brown rice is your friend. Give it a few meals, but it no time you won't even like white rice. It's great with stir fry. Start the kiddos on it now and they will never know the difference.

*Avoid corn and corn-based products. Read up on the corn industry and how it is poisoning us.

*Be mindful of the white sugar and flour you are consuming. Ask yourself, is this worth it?

*Poached chicken breasts from simplyrecipes.com (I think). You can make several days worth at once at use them in multiple applications, like topping a bed of arugula.

*Eliminate artificial sweeteners. Iced tea with stevia is a great substitute.

*Exercise at least 3-5 days/week for at least 30-60 minutes. Combine cardio with strengthening exercises, they go hand in hand for maximum impact.

*Consider keeping a food journal for at least 2 weeks. loseit.com is a free and easy to use option. This will let you see how your choices impact the bottom line so to speak.

*Be easy on yourself. There will be days where you fall off the wagon. When you feel like, jump back on the wagon and if you manipulate these variables, you can control how fast you lose and manage keeping it off for the long haul.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSaffoula

I tried the no-carb thing but a.unless you plan to stay on it forever the effects are temporary and b. I kept getting light headed and doing things like tripping, falling, everything short of fainting. Maybe I wasn't compensating appropriately w/ protein, but it was clearly not for me. I don't believe there is a quick fix, and I also don't believe there is anything wrong with rice! (Try brown instead of white.) It's my thought that the best course of action is an overall change in diet and (when you get to it) exercise and lifestyle.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterchantalart

I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes at week 32 of pregnancy and was put on an absolute 100% no carb diet.

I lost weight.

In my THIRD TRIMESTER of pregnancy.

Now, it was absolutely miserable and it was no time for me personally to be losing weight and I hated it, but I can attest that yes, if you cut out carbs, you will absolutely lose weight.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSonja

My aunt is an endocrinologist with Mayo and claims that the Atkins diet is the single worst thing she's ever encountered, health wise. It's incredibly hard on your kidneys and liver, and long term, it's flat out bad for you. Unless you're sticking with it permanently - which, uh, is terrible, health wise - you can't keep the weight off. Your best bet is just to add more veggies to your diet. And nthing the quinoa recommendation - it's delicious, way better for you than rice, and very easy to make. If you can find it at a bulk item store, you can get it for a relatively low price.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMadison

I'm not sure where in central PA you live, but there's a Trader Joe's near the King of Prussia mall (Maybe there's one in Harrisburg by now--you can google it). I recommend their stuff because you can buy all the things people are recommending above, plus lots of good frozen meals for when you don't have time to really cook--including lots of good frozen veggie meals. They try to use whole food and no preservatives in their foods, and no HFCS and MSG, etc. And good whole grain cereals and organic foods for the kids (it's really easy to get kids to like healthy food, if you don't give them the bad stuff). We used to go one every 6 weeks and stock up on the good stuff--bring a cooler and fill it with frozen items, load up the entire car, etc.. TJ's will make your life easier and more healthy. Just try to stay away from the cookies and bakery....

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkajey

Oh fuck all this diet talk. I'm still stuck on your bacon references.

If you're ever in Montclair, NJ, they have a chocolate shop (forgot the name at the moment) that makes chocolate-covered bacon! Yum!! You must try it if you come to NJ any time soon. I tried it and it was sickly awesome.

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterChrissyD

I'm sorry Monica. I really do wish you and your family all the best but I think that this is a disgusting post, for more reasons than one.
Dietwise, Saffoula's advice seems reasonable

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterClaudia

Claudia, you wish Monica and her family all the best and then you state that you find this post "disgusting" and then you give no reasons and then you waltz right into that category of anonymous people other wise known as dipshits. So, at least that much was made clear.

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSB

I'm not anonymous. That's my name and Monica has my email address. This is not my first comment.
I do wish them all the best. I just wanted to say that in the first place because I know that there are lots of people out there who read blogs they don't like just to harass and insult the author. I even considered that, since what I had to say wasn't a compliment, maybe I should send Monica an email instead of commenting publicly. Then I decided that this is a public blog, that I'm not a troll, that Monica herself asked her readers to comment on her decision to post sponsored texts, and that, even though I have no advice to give to anyone and that I know that life is hard and everyone has to make a living, I had something to say that maybe was worth some consideration.
I like this blog, I like these people, I like reading Monica's posts, I think that Serge's writing is very good. I will continue to read The Girl Who.
I didn't explain much because I usually try not to lecture anyone. I don't have a lot to say. Monica is a journalist and I thought that she might know what I was talking about, I just wanted to leave a note. It made me sad to read something that, to me, if I had to make the decision, would be selling out. The word "disgusting" was an association with the "fat" mentioned on the post. Maybe it wasn't a good word choice. As you can probably tell by now, I'm not an English native speaker. I'm not disgusted by meat or fat or sausages, but since Monica herself was joking with that idea ("Because it's been really hot lately and if I tried to eat a bacon flavored chocolate bar it would just melt everywhere and then I'd be really sticky and gross and I'd have to shower.") I chose that word to say that I was disgusted to read a post with very little reason other than pointing to a specific product. I know that what Monica said was genuine, I know that she was being honest, I know that she wouldn't write about it if she didn't actually believe in it. But I have this discussion sometimes with my friends. I really do think that intentions aren't everything. It's "disgusting" when people soften and lower their standards. But I don't think that people are disgusting. I'm sorry if the word is too strong.
I read sponsored posts all the time. They all bother me. But this one bothered me more. I wasn't expecting it to be about such a controversial diet, with so many health related issues, issues that are still being debated. I wasn't expecting that it would be about a company selling processed meat products. I really hope that this company is up to Monica's standards if she were to know everything about the way they do what they do; the salaries they pay; the taxes they pay; the way the animals they use are fed; the way they're treated; and so on and so on and so on. I think that advertising/being sponsored is very tricky. Are you sure that you would be able to stand by this company in all respects?
I'm not saying that talking about a product one likes is necessarily a problem. Or that allowing ads on your website is wrong. But I think that this discussion is worth it.

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterClaudia

Maybe Claudia should have written the extensive comment first, because there is no way anyone could have extrapolated what she meant from that original, insulting comment.
I have been reading your blog for a very long time, and I'm so happy for you if these changes mean we continue to get your writing for free, and you manage to make a profit out of your talent and all the time you invest. However, the segway from your normal looking blog to the sponsored bit read a bit awkward for me. It may be the kind of product you're writing about though, not your writing itself. I may have been more interested in hearing about bacon maybe in the context of something Serge cooked, just to give an example off the top of my head. It may be possible for you to write about companies/products that have more to do with your own personal interests: I've found your comments on baby gear interesting, and I don't even have any kids. I don't know. I love writing and I put myself in your position and it must be hard to figure out a way of writing the sponsors into your normal writing, and maybe this can be solved with tailoring the sponsors to your lifestyle. All the best anyways, and kudos for you for making money with your own hard work :-)

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteranother monica

That's great advice. But I always want to be very clear that a post is sponsored, so taking all that effort to disguise the sponsor isn't exactly the way to go either... It's all a work in progress... I really appreciate your thoughtful, helpful comment.

July 24, 2011 | Registered CommenterMonicaBielanko

Two different persons tell me that my comment was insulting. To me, that's enough to know that, even though that wasn't my intention, it was insulting. So, all I have to do is to sincerely apologize. Please accept my apologies, Monica.

I just saw that you mentioned me in your new post. This makes me sad, but I guess I deserved it? I sincerely hoped that explaining what I meant made a difference, even if people don't agree with me. And I also hoped that people believed that I don't think anyone is "generally disgusting". I made a very bad word choice.

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterClaudia

Chiming in with Carole...

I did the South Beach diet a couple years ago, similar to Atkins but with more of a focus on low fat proteins and no carbs for the first two weeks - there are "phases" and from one carb addict to another: I can tell you the first two week no-carb phase is HELL. But, I lost a shit ton of weight and once I reached phase two and three (gradually incorporating whole wheat bread, brown rice, and whole wheat pasta) I actually kept it off too. Of course, about a year after I started back in with my affair with white bread and regular pasta. Damn you, simple carbohydrates and your tastiness.

I think the South Beach is good because that two week initial no carb period kind of kick starts your body into relying on burning fat for energy as opposed to just using carbs for energy. There are some bad side effects at first, feeling a bit weak and headache-y, but for me it was the right decision. Seriously, I lost about 10 pounds in those two weeks.

Think about i! Maybe I'll even hop back on the bandwagon too :)

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSara

The sponsor thing is a fine line, but this is Monica's blog and she has the right to do with it what she will. The sponsored posts don't bother me in the least, I either watch the video or I don't, no big deal.
On a personal note, my overweight, football playing son and I spent our time and energy on the South Beach Diet. I was given the books and we, together, went through them and picked out what recipes worked for both of our picky eating habits. My son went from 279 at his football weigh in the beginning of his sophmore year of highschool to 182 at his football weigh in the beginning of his senior year. We didn't have a scale at home so I am relying on someone else's scale. I'm guessing he hovers somewhere around the 200 mark a year later. I didn't do quite as well as he did, but my eating habits changed quite a bit, as did his, which is how he maintains.
I do think that alot of it has to do with mindset and age. I'm 45 and about 140 and a size 8, but if I cut out the beer, I might be 130 and a size 6? Yeah, whatever, it's the beer.
Just be smart about it, and don't go overboard on changing everything all at once! Ice cream becomes frozen yogurt, white bread becomes wheat bread, and white rice becomes brown rice. It's all good, in moderation.

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterWendyinvt

Wow, that whole discussion was to get to the Hillshire sponsorship? Yuck.

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKD

Like a previous poster said about Atkins, it puts alot of stress on the kidney and liver.

In order to lose weight and be healthy we need to detoxify and nourish the body. Try going 2 weeks without eating food laden with preservatives and you will be amazed at how much better you feel. Here's a good list of what I eat and have lost like 30 pounds in 3 months:
Free range eggs
organic broccoli, apples, kale, lettuces, spinach, tomatoes, zucchini, summer squash, watermelon, strawberries, blueberries, pears, basically all fruits and veggies except potatoes and corn(although this time of year it's hard to not eat it once in awhile!)
greek organic yogurt
Ezekiel bread
almond butter
raw honey(but not for kids under 3)
Irish oatmeal
kefir
fresh mozzarella
rice pasta once a week
grass fed beef
wild salmon
kombucha
organic free trade coffee
green tea
organic milk and cream

I stay away from artificial sweeteners, white flour, sugar and soft drinks. Hope it helps!

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTJ

And there is the Thumperian Principle for Claudia and KD. Serge might want to google it. It will certainly give him fodder for a post.
"If you can't say sumpin nice, don't say nothin at all"

July 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterWendyinvt

I did the Carb Addicts Diet, which allows for 60 minutes a day of free-carbing. It was the only way I could stick to no carbs the rest of the day-- kept my eye on that 60 minutes of pasta and fuit (which are the things I crave when I'm cutting carbs, not bread or sweets. I know, I'm weird). It worked, though I was also exercising at the time so I can't say how much was the diet alone.

July 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSadie

I find it interesting that Wendyinvt took my comment as negative. The post about losing weight was clearly wrapped around a need to work in the Hillshire Farms sponsored ad. But the reason that most people come to read blogs like this is to have a place where they are not treated like customers. I completely get Monica's right to make a living off this blog, but there is a difference between selling blog space on the sides of the site and writing posts specifically at the behest of paid interests. It takes her relationship with readers and sells it to companies. And now look, the very next post is for Allstate. I know that individual readers will make their choices about continuing to read or not. But it just feels yucky from a writer who is supposed to be about keeping it real.

July 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKD

may I HIGHLY recommend "Protein Power" by Dr. Eades. Seriously it explains in modern scientific theory and clear reasoning WHY low carb diets not only work, BUT ARE HEALTHY. Don't be bullied by moronic carb pushers. Your body developed over EONS to handle and use proteins along with nuts and vegetables along with other seasonal fruits etc. Obesity is the direct result of carb fads and government food pyramid BS. (BTW they keep changing that OVER and OVER). I've been on a lower carb, higher LEAN protein diet and have lost and kept off 40 lbs. My blood sugar is now normal (after being diagnosed and near diabetic), my Cholesterol is now back in check even though I ingest more now than 5 years ago in my fat days. PLEASE for the love of GOD (mormon or other ones in Kolob), PLEASE READ THIS BOOK (protein Power, dr. eades)
and be saved! Praise MEAT! And go get a Double Down from KFC and eat it in a bikini! seriously!, OH, and LOVE YOU!

July 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTyler

I know you said don't talk about exercise, but I gotta. My old roommate had Pick Your Level Weight Loss Pilates on dvd. We did it once a day. It's only thirty-five minutes long, and our bodies became super toned. I think I lost about fifteen pounds in a matter of weeks. We didn't stop eating anything. She and I would go out drinking. Then stuff our faces with Taco Bell. Pick Your Level is available on Netflix through watch instantly. Furthermore, I just can't bring myself to believe that rice is that bad for you.

July 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAllison

Hey there Allison. Was it this dvd? Thanks.

http://www.amazon.com/Pick-Your-Level-Weight-Pilates/dp/B000GEIRBO/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1311634681&sr=8-2

July 25, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterserge

@Monica: Thank you for taking the time to respond, specially since you don't owe me any kind of explanation. In fact, the more I think about it, the more I feel like a jackass for doling out unsolicited advice.
And to those who complain about you not keeping it real: It doesn't get any more real than paying the bills, so...
All the best.

July 26, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteranother monica

Don't feel like a jackass! I have a blog and comments are open - advice is always being solicited and I appreciate you doing it in a kind, tactful way. Thank you!

July 26, 2011 | Registered CommenterMonicaBielanko

Apologies to KD for reading her post as negative, It has been bothering me that clearly I upset KD as over the last few days she has referred to it in the comments on other blogs that I happen to read. I'm putting this here because it is where the original post came from.
I don't comment on many blogs and I try to only comment when the writer asks for his/her readers input, or I have an example that fits the post. My first post about my experience with the South Beach Diet, was relevant, IMHO. Apparently my second post regarding the Thumperian Principle was not worded in such a way as to convey the message I was trying to, and for that I apologize.
Wendy in Vermont

July 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterWendyinvt

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