Living Without Carbs

Living Without Carbs

About This Blog

If you battle with your weight, have type 2 Diabetes or simply crave a delicious alternative to the complex carb diet we have all been led to believe is good for us, then you may find the following pages of interest. We aim to add a lot of recipes, menus, fact feeds and so much more to help anyone who wants to keep their health and diet in check.

Please share these feeds so more are aware that there is something they can do too. You can also follow me on twitter @Nocarbsnicky

Well, if we can not eat Carbs what can we eat?

NO CARBS! What to eat?Posted by Nicky Tue, April 04, 2017 11:19AM

Well, if we can not eat Carbs what can we eat?

Answer. Plenty.

When we first set out with this new way of thinking/eating I thought I was going to struggle, as I had said in one of my earlier blogs, Howard and I have very different tastes. He likes plain food and I quite like lots of different experiences with my food. I like spicy food he does not. Well, when you stop trying to over complicate the experience then your first battle is over.

I will continue with this topic in more detail later, but for now I thought it good to share one aspect of our life. Working Lunches.

As Howard is in a car all day, I had to come up with something that he could easily eat within about 10 minutes. So my first thought and seeing as we were still in Winter was soups. I had a soup flask that would keep his lunch hot for 9 hours. I prefer to make my own soups anyway, so this was going to be quite easy, which was all part of the process to not make this more difficult than it had to be. So Howard’s favourite soup was Cream of Tomato. Ok challenge! How do you better a nations favourite. Easy, you don’t, you try and find a version online that might just fit the bill, or you can tweak to make your own. All the soups that I make only take me about 30 minutes from start to serving in a bowl or flask. Anything longer, really is not worth the extra effort.

Of course man can not eat soup alone, so I had to come up with some other lunch time meals. One of his favourites is what he calls his amuse-bouche, little bite size pieces of food he can tuck into with a salad. Remember he is in a car all day and only gets 10 minutes to eat. So today for example I sent him off to work with a green salad, consisting of different lettuce, cucumber and celery. Accompanied with 2 boiled eggs, 2 slices of ham and a few small chunks of cheese. Followed by some strawberries.

There is enough protein in there to keep him going until dinner time and enough fats to keep him full, plus the lovely strawberries will satisfy any sweet cravings he may be having. Strawberries are one of the lowest fruits for sugar. Another good choice would have been Raspberries or Blackberries.

So you see not everything has to have bread, pasta or potatoes with it.



  • Comments(0)//livingwithoutcarbs.artworkgenie.com/#post7

Cheeky kicking tomato soup.

RecipesPosted by Nicky Mon, April 03, 2017 02:07PM

1 400g Tin of tomatoes

1 Courgette sliced

10 Fresh Basil Leaves (Small) use your own judgement on larger leaves

200mls Water

1 Vegetable stock cube

To Taste Crushed Chilies

Literally throw it all in a pan as I do with most of my cooking and simmer for about 25 minutes.

After 25 minutes the colour will change and look more luxurious and rich.


Then blitz in a blender


The soup will change colour to a lighter shade.

Here is your lovely soup, sprinkle with extra fresh basil leaves if you like.



You could take out the Courgette and replace with about 100ml of Crème Fraîche, but the courgettes really do make this nice and creamy and there are so many health benefits with courgettes. See the nerdy bit at the bottom.


This version is just under 100 calories per portion and would serve 2. Great for a low calorie lunch.

The Verdict

Howard’s comment was “this is now my second favourite soup”. BAM. RESULT!

The Nerdy Bit

Tomatoes contain so many great things, including Vitamin A and C, but a number of studies have concluded that they can also reduce your chance of developing prostate, colorectal and stomach cancer. Lycopene which is a natural antioxidant found in tomatoes basically works by slowing the growth of cancerous cells. When tomatoes are cooked, this produces even more Lycopene. So whats not to like about tomatoes?

Basil is one of the healthiest herbs when it's fresh. It contains many vitamins and minerals, which include Vitamin A, C and K. Minerals you can find are Iron, Magnesium, Calcium and many more.

Chilli, well I love chilli except when I wipe my eye after chopping a fresh chilli. DO NOT REPEAT. You can find out the benefits of Chilli on my Little bit of Spicy and Sour dish.

Courgettes I think, are so under used, being very low in calories at only 17 calories per 100g they are a great filler for dinners. You can also do so much with them including courgetti style pasta and making courgette style lasagne sheets. They also contain no saturated fats or cholesterol. The skin on a courgette contains a great source of fibre, that could help reduce constipation.






  • Comments(0)//livingwithoutcarbs.artworkgenie.com/#post6

Whats in your cupboard?

Whats in your cupboard?Posted by Nicky Mon, April 03, 2017 10:30AM

Whats in your kitchen cupboard?

So day one was arriving very soon and my menu for the week ahead was all set. So off to the kitchen cupboard I went. Ok, so first impression’s were not good. Sugar and lots of varieties, well when you bake you have to have at least 20 different types as you never know what you will need and I do like to have all bases covered. So operation ‘move out’ had started.

I had my rice shelf, my pasta shelf, all had to go, well be moved to another cupboard that was not in eye line, couldn’t bear to throw food out, however if you think that you will need to really start from scratch, I am sure there are plenty of your friends you could give your food to. Then to my phone to make my new updated shopping list. You could spend a fortune on all the fancy foods you think you might need. My suggestion would be to work out as I did your menu for the week ahead and gauge your shopping list on this.

My kitchen cupboard now has a lot less in it, but all the essential ingredients to make or contribute to meals. See my basics below.

Salt and Pepper

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Rapeseed Oil

Gravy and stock cubes

Coconut Oil

Coconut Cream

Peanut butter

Tahini

Vinegar

White Wine Vinegar

Cyder Vinegar

Fish Sauce

Soya Sauce

Tabasco Sauce

Tins of Tuna

Tins of Mackerel

Tins of Chick Peas

Tins of Mixed Beans

Tins of Cannellini Beans

Tins of Chopped Tomatoes

Good Quality Coco Powder

Organic Cocoa Nibs

Ground Flaxseed

Mixed Nuts

Now onto the fridge.

Eggs, and lots of them

Butter (yes butter and not marg) read the label you will see why

Milk

Natural Set Full Fat Yogurt

Crème Fraîche

Sour Cream

Bacon

Ham

Cheese, lots of varieties

Fruit, consisting of Strawberries and Apples

Dijon Mustard

Wholegrain Mustard

Vegetables, which consisted of :-

Cauliflower

Broccoli

Courgettes

Green Beans

Peppers

Tomatoes

Celeriac

Mushrooms

Cucumber

Salad Items in general

Other stuff

Onions

Chillis

Garlic

Ginger

Apple Juice

Raisins

(See the Planning blog on how you can use the apple juice and raisins).

Now onto the Freezer.

Chicken Breasts

Salmon Pieces

Prawns

Plaice

Cod

Frozen Fruit

Minced Meat, Lamb and Beef

Pork Chops

Lamb Chops

With plenty of space left for all the lovely new meals I was going to cook. I personally like to make more of a lot of foods, so on some days I can just get something out of the freezer and have an easy cook day.

I was now set.









  • Comments(0)//livingwithoutcarbs.artworkgenie.com/#post5

Weight loss far.

Weight Loss So FarPosted by Nicky Sun, April 02, 2017 11:05PM
After 7 weeks of this new way of eating, Howard has lost 1 Stone in weight and is no longer Diabetic, he has been ranked down to Pre-Diabetic and I have lost 1 1/2 Stone. We continue to our end goals.

Nearly a year on this way of eating (woe) and we are much healthier and lighter. Both an extra 1/2 stone gone.


  • Comments(0)//livingwithoutcarbs.artworkgenie.com/#post4

Introduction

IntroductionPosted by Nicky Sun, April 02, 2017 10:48PM

Our story begins, yes OUR story, as Howard and I decided to look at the way we live with our diet. You see, Howard has been a type 2 diabetic for several years now and I, well, lets just say I was heading in the wrong direction with my weight. In my youth I was always fit and slim, but being a bit of a foodie, well actually a huge foodie fan and early jobs allowing me to travel all over the world, I found my waist line expanding a bit with lovely restaurant food, needless to say several years later and a daughter, the waist just grew and grew. In fact, I put on over 3 stone, which for my small frame was a lot.

Howard on the other hand has always been on the slightly larger side. Nothing wrong with that, it made him extra cuddly, however he has never been happy and tried diet after diet to try and do something with his weight. Nothing ever worked. As I have already said, he found out he had type 2 Diabetes several years back and the doctors placed him on all the usual medication. Gradually over the years his blood sugar levels have been getting worse with neither one of us really taking responsibility of our diet and letting his tablets sort his problem out.

Well, this all changed one January when Howard said to me,“we have to do something about my diet”. Back in December he had several high blood readings of over 15 which to those of you who are unfamiliar with blood sugar readings is incredibly high.

So OUR story is more about the journey we have and are still taking to try and reverse his type 2 Diabetes and lose the weight we both need to lose to control our health.

You will find tips to help you both lose weight and the inspiration (we hope) to change your diet if you are type 2.

All of the recipe ideas in here have been tried by myself or Howard and we will give you our honest opinion as to what we thought. Believe me our tastes are very different.

Also menu plans have been set out to help you plan quickly and easily so you can just crack on with the new way of eating without getting too wrapped up in all the detail.

Oh and by the way, after 7 weeks of this new way of eating, Howard has lost 1 Stone in weight and is no longer Diabetic, he has been ranked down to Pre-Diabetic and I have lost 1 1/2 Stone. We continue to our end goals.

We hope you enjoy our story which today we are still continuing.





  • Comments(0)//livingwithoutcarbs.artworkgenie.com/#post3

My little bit of Spicy and Sour (Prawn Curry)

RecipesPosted by Nicky Sun, April 02, 2017 10:24PM

I like easy to make food, throw it all in kind of cooking. I also like to experiment a bit with flavours.

On a Friday night in the past I would have given myself the night off and ordered in. My favourite is Curry. So since this way of eating, I have been experimenting a lot with flavours and dishes. Tonight I think I came up with a really nice simple Prawn curry.

This Prawn curry would easily feed 4 people. Just halve the ingredients if just the two of you.

Ingredients.

03 - Tablespoons coconut oil

32 - King Prawns, uncooked, but shells off. (8 prawns each)

02 - Medium Red Onions (chopped)

01 - Red Chilli (deseeded and chopped small)

01 - Green Chilli (deseeded and chopped small)

03 - Cloves of Garlic

02 - Tablespoon tomato puree

04 - Medium ripe tomatoes

02 - Tablespoons Lemon Juice

01 - Teaspoon ground cumin

01 - Teaspoon curry powder

1/2 - Teaspoon chilli flakes

1/2 - Teaspoon ground coriander

1/2 - Teaspoon turmeric

Fresh Coriander for sprinkling on at the end.

The good bit.

Place the oil into a frying pan, whilst this is warming add all the ingredients except for the prawns and the fresh coriander into a food processor and blend to a puree. Then add this to the pan of oil and cook for about 5 minutes. Then add the raw prawns to the mix.


Cook until the prawns are pink.



Sprinkle on the Coriander and serve.


This dish does not have a hugely strong flavour, in fact quite delicate but that is perfect with the prawns. You could serve this with cauliflower rice if you are a fan.

The verdict

For me this one was nice and I would make again. As I said it was not particularly spicy even with the amount of chilli I put in, but I did notice my lips tingling a bit after I had finished. I would give this 8/10.

The nerdy bit

Chilli's are a great source of :-

Vitamin A (Red Chilli's are high in beta-carotene, which is converted into vitamin A in the body).

Vitamin C ( A powerful antioxidant, important for wound healing and the immune function).

B6 (An important function in energy metabolism)

K1 Essential for healthy bones and kidneys)

Potassium (Some say that an adequate intake of potassium may reduce the risk of heart disease)

Copper (Which is an essential antioxidant important for strong bones and healthy neurons.

Prawns are good for you because :-

They are a low fat source of protein, for example the 8 prawns each in this recipe contain only 101 calories but over 19 grams of protein and only 1.4 grams of fat. The unsaturated fats in prawns can help improve your blood cholesterol levels.



  • Comments(0)//livingwithoutcarbs.artworkgenie.com/#post2

Planning

PlanningPosted by Nicky Sun, April 02, 2017 10:22PM

I planned on a set amount of calories for each of us to stick to each day with a balanced diet of protein, fats and vitamins. For example having eggs in the morning is a great source of Protein which is what you need to keep you full and not craving snacks before lunch.

So a couple of boiled eggs each weighing about 50g are approx 77 calories each. So 154 Calories in total. Add a cup of tea with semi skimmed milk, another 15 calories. Total for breakfast 169 calories.

So an average weekly breakfast menu for Howard would look something like this.

Monday :- 2 Boiled Eggs, 1 cup of tea with skimmed milk = 169 calories.

Tuesday :- 2 Large Fried Eggs, 2 rashers of lean bacon, mushrooms, 1 cup of tea with skimmed milk = 255 calories

Wednesday :- 2 Egg Omelette with mushrooms, Cheddar Cheese and Ham, 1 cup of tea with skimmed milk = 359 calories.

Thursday :- 2 Boiled Eggs, 1 cup of tea with skimmed milk = 169 calories.

Friday :- 2 Large Fried Eggs, 2 rashers of lean bacon, mushrooms, 1 cup of tea with skimmed milk = 255 calories

Saturday :- 2 Egg Omelette with mushrooms, Cheddar Cheese and Ham, 1 cup of tea with skimmed milk = 359 calories.

Sunday :- 2 Boiled Eggs, 1 cup of tea with skimmed milk = 169 calories.

I on the other hand wanted something a bit different and as I am not diabetic I could afford to add something to my diet. I am a huge yogurt lover and heard about the no carb bircher. So researching online I found several recipe’s but I opted for this version. 2tbsp of ground flax seed, 1tbsp of raisins soaked over night in apple juice and 2 tbsp of natural set full fat yogurt. I personally drained the raisins from the juice before I added to the bowl as it was just too sweet for me, but it would be down to personal taste. This breakfast came in at 180 calories. I personally love it.



  • Comments(0)//livingwithoutcarbs.artworkgenie.com/#post1

The Start

The StartPosted by Nicky Sun, April 02, 2017 10:09PM
So where do you start? We decided to adopt a low, no carb/sugar way of eating. If you are the person who walks round the supermarket looking at the vast array of products for sale and really look at the products, you would be excused to think that low fat would be the way to go. Well read the labels. All of the low fat varieties have way more sugar in them than their full fat counterparts. This shocked me. I had always opted for the low fat version, thinking I was helping my family. So on doing some research and reading other books for facts about how to reverse type 2 diabetes and lose weight we started by cutting out completely the following items. Potatoes Rice Pasta Bread Sugar As you will agree these are all staple ingredients to most family meals that we all eat. Howard is a typical meat and two veg kind of guy, pretty plain tastes so what was I going to cook for him to make him stick to a new way of eating. This was going to be a challenge! So I had to get organised. My priorities were as follows:- Nothing on the entertaining calender in the next couple of months. Empty out the kitchen cupboards so we can not be tempted. Clear out the fridge of any alien items that would also tempt us. This way if I had the basics covered, we would both have a fighting chance of achieving our goals. I also put up in the kitchen a white board so I could set out a weekly menu, for breakfast, lunch and dinner. This might sound a bit geeky but planning is crucial if you want to succeed. I went online and searched the books that would help me make interesting meals that we could both enjoy and adapt to our different tastes. I then set to planning my shopping list. I also downloaded a weight, calorie app. Where I could place in my current weight and my goal, plus where I could upload my daily intake of food and it would calculate them into calories. I was now set.

  • Comments(0)//livingwithoutcarbs.artworkgenie.com/#post0
« Previous