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Posts Tagged ‘taco salads are not the same as tacos in the shell’

In April, I gave up sugar. Well, added sugar. I wasn’t super strict about it. If we’re being specific, I really gave up sweets. Anyway, among the things that were on the Off Limits list was diet soda, for which I have deep affection.

After the no-sugar month ended, I returned to diet soda. But lightly. It’s no longer an every-day necessity.

And I’ve been won over to La Croix, which I previously found revolting. My favorite flavor is mango, which has a nice mango-ness essence to it. My least favorite flavor is tangerine, which tastes like licking someone’s hand after they’ve peeled an orange.

In May, I gave up carbs. But, as with sugar, I don’t mean CARBS. I mean, I was back on sugar after all. I was not turning down the occasional scoop of ice cream, that’s for sure. What I mean when I say “carbs” is the biggies. You know. Rice. Pasta. Bread. Potatoes. Oh, and I also gave up beans and legumes.

And I wasn’t even THAT strict. Sometimes I would have corn on my salads. One day I was sick with a stomach bug and so I ate a bagel. I still drank alcohol.

Even though I cringe a little bit at saying this, because it sounds like I am being glib about something that is very serious for some people, I wasn’t going low-carb because I had to; I was doing it for entertainment. So I could bend the rules here and there.

Really, though, I stuck to it. I found a previously unknown love for zucchini noodles (I REFUSE to call them zoodles), which were a perfectly delicious alternative to rice in my favorite Instant Pot Panang Curry dish. I made basically the same meals that we always make, which includes a lot of chicken/pork and a veggie side. And sometimes I would make a side of rice or couscous for my husband, and sometimes we would both just eat veggies. I begrudgingly ate taco salads instead of tacos-in-shells. And it was all fine.

There were a couple of meals I just didn’t make in May. Pizza, obviously. (I toyed with the idea of getting one of those cauliflower crusts from Trader Joe’s but I didn’t end up trying it.) I didn’t make anything that required potatoes or pasta, like chicken paprikash or spaghetti. I did make more stir fries than I thought I would (since I usually eat stir fries with rice); I either substituted zucchini noodles or I just added extra veggies.

I thought it was going to be SO HARD. I love pasta. I love pizza. I love rice. I love potatoes. I love beans. And I wouldn’t be able to have ANY of those things! For a month!

But… it wasn’t that hard.

Maybe it’s because I had just come off a month of no-sugar, and that was SO UNBEARABLE at the beginning, that going low-carb felt easier. Maybe it’s because I was allowing a little bit of sugar/sweets back into my life, so I felt like I was getting TREATS. Maybe it’s because I eat fewer carbs than I think I do. Maybe it’s because it was only for a month, and I was high on the feeling of power that I got from giving up sugar for so long. If I had to do it full time, it would probably be a lot more unpleasant. It was so not-difficult that I kind of feel like I got away with something. Or I didn’t do it correctly, which is probably more likely.

As with the no-sugar month, I didn’t experience any of the supposed benefits of a low-carb lifestyle. No weight loss, for instance. No feelings of increased energy. Possibly, this is because I didn’t cut out sugar. Or because I didn’t cut out ALL carbs. Or because I didn’t do it long enough. It was an entertaining experiment, that was all.

In any case, I am back on carbs. I have enjoyed MUCH pizza and MANY chips since May ended. There has been no longterm effect of my month off. If anything, I may be OVERcarbing. So perhaps it was harder than I realized.

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