Do You Drink Milk? What Kind?

Rarely do I ever drink cows milk. I’d be more apt to if I could get raw, organic milk, but I cannot. So I bet I drink about a gallon a year… mostly because I like the occasional milkshake. I do drink other organic milks, and am planning to learn to make Paleo ‘milk’ shakes at some point.

Expensive? Yes. Well, sort of. Years ago, when I used to buy cows milk at the store, I’d drink some at each meal and sometimes with snacks. I’d bake with it, and cook with it.

I don’t use any kind of milk that much any more. I don’t even drink a whole cup every day. If I did, it would be far too expensive at almost $3.00 per half-gallon.

How do I Use Milk Alternatives?

  • A few times a week I might have a cup with a meal.
  • I use it in smoothies, but not every day.
  • I use it when baking, which I do not do often.

What kinds of milk do I use?

  1. Almond
  2. Soy (when no others are available) (not often)
  3. Coconut
  4. Rice

I want to try other types as well.

What kinds of milk do you use? And how do you use them?

Let us know in the comments below, or email me at shannonlbuck@gmail.com. I respond to all emails.

Shannon

 

What do You use Instead of Grains?

If I don’t use grains, what do I use?

I don’t have an all-the-time substitute. I simply don’t make the same types of foods I used to. However, I do have a few things on hand about 1/3 of the year. Usually for a few month period after the tax returns show up in my account. They are:

  • almond flour/meal
  • coconut flour
  • tapioca flour

These items aid me in trying new recipes. Paleo versions of pancakes, waffles, muffins, crepes, and desserts. I don’t eat such items often, but they are a real treat when I do.

Why?

Because these flours are expensive. And, even these paleofied versions would not be the healthiest choices if you were to eat them all the time.

What grain substitutes do you use, if any? In what ways do you use them?

Share in the comments below, or email me at shannonlbuck@gmail.com. I respond to all emails.

Shannon

Why not Grains?

I followed the Whole30 program, then switched to a Paleo lifestyle. This aided me in eliminating specific foods from my diet for a several months. And I have spent time attempting to reintroduce items. Not always successfully.

Why did I do this?

This is how I’m learning what I can and cannot eat for ultimate health. Mainly, I want to lose more weight. And, I want to be healthy.

My biggest lesson has been about grains. My body does not seem to like them. 😦 It is a sad reality. Especially since I love pasta, oatmeal, rice, pancakes, waffles, cakes, brownies, popcorn, etc.

I have to keep them out of my diet if I want to lose weight, but these foods are the most affordable to make. And, I’m on a limited budget.

So, while I do not eat grains every day, week, or even month, I do eat them on occasion. Also, when I do have the opportunity to go out to eat, I will order the occasional burger at Five Guys, or a meal from Oriental Jade or Happy China Buffet that includes rice and chicken fingers – battered. And I have been craving Denny’s lately, but I blame this on my sister for mentioning it.

Once in a while, grains do enter my body. But I try to keep it at a minimum so I can continue to take weight off.

Because I’m trying to limit grains, you have likely noticed a difference in the many of the recipes I have added to the blog.

Do you eat grains? If so, which ones and in what capacity?

Share with us in the comments blow, or email me at shannonlbuck@gmail.com. I reply to all emails.

NOTE: None of the restaurants mentioned here have paid me to talk about them. They are simply places I enjoy when I go out.

Shannon

What Type of Chocolate do You Use?

The second in a continuing series of posts asking readers’ questions, this one deals with one of my favorite foods. Chocolate!

Yes, I do love chocolate. And I do eat it sometimes. Otherwise, I would feel deprived and would not stick to any healthy eating plan at all. I know this is true, because I know myself. However, I do not eat chocolate every day, or even every week.

It is said that dark (not milk or white) chocolate is good for you. In moderation, this chocolate can be good for your heart, brain, and blood sugar levels. It has antioxidants and other nutrients. So why not take advantage every so often. Right? (Unless you have health issues. Then please talk with your doctor and nutritionist. I am neither.)

Now, they say that 60% dark chocolate and higher is what we want to go for, and I can eat 60%-70% dark and enjoy it. But, do I usually get this dark chocolate?

Not really. Generally speaking, I just use Special Dark. I know. I know. NOT the healthiest. But, my main goal is to lose weight and be healthier. I can enjoy Special Dark and accomplish both, for less than the expensive dark chocolate options. I am, after all, on a budget.

How do I use this chocolate?

  • Mainly I melt some with a little coconut oil, and use it for dipping fruit slices.
  • I might make my own no-bake cookie versions, minus the extra sugar and stuff.
  • I add them to otherwise paleofied pancakes or muffins on occasion.
  • Sometimes I add them to trail mix.

I do not go overboard with the Special Dark chocolate, though. Usually Cocoa Bliss is what I use for my cravings. It is organic, and the only ingredients are cocoa powder and coconut oil. And it is delicious. I simply eat a tablespoon or two when I am feeling hungry but it is not meal time yet. It tides me over until my next meal, and helps me not to feel nauseous. (I have this problem when I am feeling hungry.)

Unsweetened cocoa powder is another chocolate that I use in:

  • Smoothies
  • Hot cocoa
  • Baking

What types of chocolate do you use in your quest to eat healthier on a budget? How do you use the chocolate? Let us know in the comments below, or email me at shannonlbuck@gmail.com. I respond to all emails.

Note: I have not been paid to mention brands in this post. They are just the products that I use.

Shannon

What Fruits do You Use?

Every so often, a reader will email me or comment here on the blog with a question. I decided it was about time I added a category here for answering these questions.

One question people have asked recently is what fruits I use when preparing foods, beverages, and just for eating as are. Usually this would be whatever is cheap, lol. But I do have other criteria.

Budget permitting, some items are organic. I try to follow the Dirty Dozen and Clean 15 when possible.

Also, I do not usually eat a lot of fruit – I’m working on losing weight and fruit has sugar. So I try to stick to one, sometimes two, servings of fruit a day. And food servings are usually smaller than we think, so this means eating a small banana or other fruit, and not a large one.

So, what fruits do I usually get?

  • bananas
  • kiwi
  • apples
  • oranges
  • lemons and limes for use in recipes or beverages
  • pears
  • berries
  • pineapple

Are there other fruits I sometimes eat? Of course:

  • melons
  • peaches
  • plums
  • other fruits I find good deals on

What fruits do you enjoy? And in what recipes do you use them?

Share with us in the comments, or by emailing me at shannonlbuck@gmail.com. I respond to all emails.

Shannon

Can You Eat Healthy When Utilizing Dollar Day Sales?

Whether or not you can eat healthy while utilizing dollar day sales depends on what the store is offering up. It is always worth it to check the sales out, because you never know what they might include.

Examples of Healthier Dollar Day Foods

canned peas (2 for $1)

Canned carrots (2 for $1)

cucumbers (2 for $1)

1 dozen eggs

1 pound baby carrots (2 for $1)

oranges (3 for $1)

grapefruit (2 for $1)

Lemon (3 for $1)

Limes (2 or 3 for $1)

bananas (3 pounds for $1)

baked beans, if your diet allows for this (2 for $1)

canned pears (2 for $1)

canned peaches (2 for $1)

canned pineapple (2 for $1)

(Update January 2017: When updating this list to use healthier foods, it was cut drastically. You can’t always find many healthier foods at dollar day prices, but keep an eye out just in case. Get the extra, and store them in the pantry or freeze to use later.)

There are many things that can be made with these items, providing you have other healthy staples on hand.

Ideas for Using Foods from Dollar Day Sales

Breakfast:

  • Smoothies
  • Omelets
  • Eggs with a fruit salad

Dessert:

  • Fruit parfaits
  • Paleo ice cream

Lunch/Dinner:

  • Baked beans with a side salad
  • A simple vegetable soup

I’m sure you can come up with other ideas as well.

I usually have little bits of leftovers from these meals, which are frozen whenever possible. Any freezer plan site will be able to tell you what can and cannot be frozen. Even if there is just 1 or 2 teaspoons of vegetables or meat, I freeze them for soups or casseroles later on. A few chunks of fruit can go into a fruit mix-up bag for smoothies later on.

Warmest Wishes,

Shannon