Cooking SCD Meals

When I decided to begin this Special Carbohydrate Diet (SCD), I was a bit hesitant about the SCD meals that we would be eating. I had purchased three recipes books that provided SCD meals but they didn’t look that appetizing. I was used to recipes a bit more involved and complicated.

The one perk for me is that at least I was used to cooking all of my meals from scratch. I ate no processed foods, so that would not be a big stretch. SCD meals rely solely on every single thing made from scratch, including the ketchup and mayo. The reason is because all processed, store-bought foods have sugar, a disaccharide. And if you remember from the last post, only monosaccharides are allowed.

Luckily, easy recipes are included for everything and once you make the ketchup and mayo, it’s done and in the fridge. There are also recipes for BBQ sauce, hot sauce and several other things that I haven’t tried yet.

Now onto the SCD meals. I have made many and to my delight and the delight of my hubby, they are delicious! I have not made even one that we did not like. The Stuffed Zucchini was one of our favorites and made enough to freeze the leftovers. That was from Breaking the Vicious Cycle by Elaine Gottschall.stuffed zucchini

The Eggplant Lasagna from Lucy’s Specific Carbohydrate Diet Cookbook by Lucy Rosset was amazing. I left out the spinach because I know I don’t do well with that. And before all of the mastos freak out at the thought of eating two nightshades, both eggplant and tomatoes, either this SCD is working or something freaky is happening, because I can tolerate both without any GI problems!eggplant lasagna

This next recipe was from a website that was not SCD but I altered it to use only SCD legal ingredients and it was one of the best pork tenderloin recipes we had ever eaten. I served it with mashed cauliflower (don’t knock it till you’ve tried it) and sweet peas. Every meal is so filling and satisfying.pork tenderloin

This last recipe for this post was Parmesan and Walnut Crusted Chicken from Recipes for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet by Raman Prasad. Raman worked directly with Elaine Gottschall prior to her death and he was able to heal his inflammatory bowel disease through Elaine’s diet. This chicken is the juiciest, tastiest chicken that was well-complemented by the acorn squash and steamed broccoli. parmesan and walnut chicken

These are just a few of the delicious SCD meals I have been making. We have been enjoying the flavors, textures and different recipes. Again, I am so happy to report that I have not had any reactions to these recipes.

The one thing that I have noticed is that because they are so tasty, I have to be mindful of eating slowly and not overeating. My Dysautonomia is triggered by eating too much. I do much better by eating small amounts more frequently. If I get a feeling of fullness, even if I haven’t eaten enough to really be full, it’s my Dysautonomia kicking in, not my mast cells. That’s a clear sign to eat less next time.

Stay tuned as I describe the baking fun next.

Eating Like Children

Babies are the perfect eaters. They eat when they are hungry and stop when they are full. Small children are perfect eaters too unless adults unknowingly alter their relationship with food by using it for bribes, threats or treats.  Eating like children could be our solution to overeating and the way to enjoy food more.

Parents often complain that their children are fussy, don’t want to eat at mealtime or don’t eat enough. If parents offered them nutritious food throughout the day, they would eat enough and choose adequate variety of vitamins and minerals.

In our zeal to be good parents, we worry about them not getting adequate nourishment. That would only be a concern if we also offer them processed snack foods regularly. The allure of the sugar, fat and salt is tough to refuse.

But if children are freely given small portions of varied whole foods, they will pick and choose their favorites (what we should do), eat with enjoyment (yes, us too) stop as soon as their bellies are full (perfect weight management) and not differentiate between a juicy orange or an ice cream cone (imagine us doing that).

Remember, they are not born knowing that veggies and fruits are “good” food and sweets are not. We place that value on them and teach them our biases. So emulate small children eating… whether slurping an ice cream cone on a hot day or delighting in a plate of spaghetti and meatballs.

Pretty little girls eating ice cream in the summer

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Cooking When You Don't Have Time

Busy families often succumb to the convenience of processed, packaged food. Working parents have little time and are especially vulnerable to the quick and easy choices. Take-out is also a frequent option. How can you possibly add cooking when you don’t have time?

Lunchtime can be a problem too. Evenings are hectic and the thought of making lunches is just “one more thing” on your to do list. But according to the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, dieters who ate out for lunch even once a week lost 5 fewer pounds. I do not promote dieting or strictly counting pounds, but brown bagging definitely has a benefit.

To fit in cooking real food and packing lunch instead of convenience food, here are a few tips:

  1. Choose a day (maybe a weekend) and bulk cook. Foods like stews, casseroles, roasted chickens and rice can be cooked in large amounts and frozen into serving size.
  2. Keep your fridge and pantry stocked with real food that you can whip together in a meal- beans, frozen veggies, whole grain pasta, brown rice, quinoa, canned tuna, canned (or carton) tomatoes, sweet potatoes, onions, garlic, nuts and seeds, olive oil, coconut oil, milk or milk alternatives, Greek yogurt, cheese, eggs and fruits.
  3. Keep an eye out for healthy recipes that are quick and easy. There are many!
  4. If you have children, involve them in the process, especially prep and cooking. Although you’ll initially invest more time, it will be well spent.
  5. Plan a menu each week. Ask for input from the family. If you don’t plan, you’ll choose the “other” route.
  6. Use your crockpot. I have a couple of favorite crockpot recipes. Throw the ingredients into the crockpot before you leave and dinner awaits you when you return.
  7. If you must by pre-packaged food, at least buy the best. Organic or one with no additives, preservatives, artificial colors or flavors and the less ingredients, the better.
  8. When you do cook a meal, always double it so you can freeze one for another time.

With just some tweaking and pre-planning, you can change your processed, convenience foods to clean, healthy eating.  Here’s a menu planner you can use to help with the #5. Menu Planner-3

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