We tried The Fast Metabolism Diet, and it worked!

Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post, but the review is absolutely my own.  Questions?  Ask me!!

Ok, I am not a dieter by nature.  I am too much of a food-lover.  (Obviously!)  But after having 3 babies in under 4 years, my body had pretty much given up on ‘bouncing back’.

It didn’t matter what I ate, or didn’t eat…  my body stayed the same and seemed to get more uncomfortable every day.  I did’t feel like me anymore, but rather a miserable shadow of me, trapped in someone else’s body.

So, when I was offered the chance to try out Haylie Pomroy’s new book, The Fast Metabolism Diet, I was happy to try something new.  I wasn’t very optimistic, that’s for sure, but I figured it couldn’t hurt to try, and the Hubs was on board, so we jumped right in!

(If you follow me on instagram at all, you probably had an inclination something was going on!)

I read the book, and loved it right away.  Haylie has a very scientific but understandable approach to nutrition and dieting.  She explains things well, so that I understood them, instead of just saying “do this because I said so”.

I was pleasantly surprised when I started losing weight right away!  But much more importantly…  I lost inches!!

Lots of inches actually, and all from the right places!  We are a few days from being done with the diet, but Andrew has lost 12 pounds and 3 inches off his waist (and other places too!) already and I have lost 14 pounds and 4 inches off my waist (and lots of inches from other places!!).

My waist is smaller, my thighs are smaller, the fat just felt like it was melting off my frame.  Even though the scale didn’t change that much (not 20 lbs, anyways, but I’m definitely not complaining!), the measuring tape proved much more important.

I will take inches lost over pounds any day!  (We all know muscle weighs more than fat anyways, right?)

Ok, so the bottom line is:  I am happy with the diet.  I am glad we did it.  I will happily recommend it, and I will probably do it again someday (even soon)!

But you don’t just want the bottom line, do you?  You want the nitty-gritty.  So, here it is, pro/con style:

Pros:  It worked for me!  I lost inches & pounds, dropped lots of bad eating habits, learned to love some new-to-me healthy foods and good habits, and just feel better overall.

Cons:  It’s hard.  Ok. it’s not the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but it’s definitely hard.  This diet requires lots of planning.  If you don’t plan, you will probably fail.  But, if you do a little planning, you will do great!

*There is an iPhone app that you can buy to go with the diet and I’ve gotta say, that was the best $1.99 I’ve spent in a long time!  I don’t think I could have done the diet without it.  And on the topic of money…

The only other real con I had with this diet is the cost.  Now, to be fair, that is not Haylie or this diet’s problem.  That is just the unfortunate cost of eating fresh veggies and real food.

That said, if you garden, wait until peak harvesting season to do this diet!  And for the rest of us…  late spring and summer, with their abundant farmer’s markets, farmshares and produce stands will make the cost of eating this healthy that much more bearable!

My husband’s hardest thing, besides just going through the pain of breaking bad eating habits (serious sugar cravings for that guy!), was drinking enough water everyday.

Water is a biggie on this diet, and you need to drink half your body weight in ounces every day (which we really should be doing anyway!).  I drink a lot of water so that wasn’t a big deal for me, but for my husband…  he felt like he was drowning a bit!  ;o)  But, he has definitely learned to be better about drinking water!

And as Haylie puts it…  if you don’t drink all your water so that the fat and toxins can be flushed out of your body, you’re basically taking fat off one thigh and putting it back on the other, because it has no way out!  Yuck!!

So, what do you think?  Do you think I’m a quack?  Or do you think you might give this a try?

 

the cutest ice cream cakes you’ve ever seen…

Baskin-Robbins has some super cute little holiday ice cream cakes right now.

Santa, Frosty, and a little elf…

Aren’t they cute??

I got a chance to try out a few of these cakes for our holiday gatherings this year and they were a big hit.

Although I must admit, cutting into our sweet little elves heads on Christmas Eve felt a little funny.

(Please don’t order one of these with a red ice cream inside!)  ;o)

Really though, who doesn’t love a good ice cream cake?  And Baskin-Robbins definitely knows what they’re doing in this area!

I know the holidays are kind of over, but if you still have some last celebrations coming up like we do (or even some winter birthdays to celebrate!), how about trying one of these fun cakes for a change??

Or you know, Baskin-Robbins gift cards/certificates are always a good thing.  I’m pretty sure I’ve never met a person who doesn’t like ice cream, have you?

I have to tell you, they didn’t have to twist my arm to far to get me to say yes to reviewing some delicious Baskin-Robbins ice cream. My family sure loves ice cream!!  :o)

By the way, if you don’t have a Baskin-Robbins near  you, and you would like some ice cream cake goodness in your life, may I suggest this?  It won’t disappoint, I promise!

Also, just out of curiosity (and because I love useless trivia!) What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?

Mine is coffee, cardamom, or swiss orange chip!  Yum!!

I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Baskin-Robbins.  I received a gift card to facilitate my shopping experience and a promotional item as a thank you for participating.”

my favorite things: 2012 kitchen edition

I can hardly believe the Christmas season is in full-swing already!

Christmas trees are being decorated, cookies are being baked, shopping is being done…

Speaking of. How far are you on your Christmas shopping??  Still in the thick of it, looking for ideas like I am?

Well, if you’ve got a foodie on your list, I thought I would share some of my all-time favorite kitchen items with you!

These are the very first things I would replace if my house burned down.

What are your must-have kitchen items?

KitchenAid stand mixer (6qt or 7qt) - When my last KitchenAid died, I may have cried.  This is my 3rd hand in the kitchen!

BeaterBlade - I don’t know why all mixers don’t come with one of these.  Absolutely essential for efficient, effortless baking.

Le Creuset spatulas - My favorite spatulas, by far. And I love the cute crock they are stored in!

Cookie scoops - I use these for so many things…  Effortless uniform cookies.  Cupcakes.  Muffins.  Pancakes.

Microplane graters - I don’t know what I did before these!  Freshly grated parmesan cheese, lemon zest, grated fresh nutmeg…

Rimmed baking sheets - These are the only cookie sheets I ever use in my kitchen.  ’Nuf said.

Pyrex baking dishes with lids - Pyrex are wonderful for everything.  Lids make them even better!

Le Creuset round dutch oven - Ok.  I kindof just love this for how beautiful it is.  But I also actually use it all the time!  For soups, stews, roasts, caramel corn, rice krispies treats…  just about everything!

Lodge 12″ cast iron skillet - This is my newest kitchen-love.  Every time I use it I can’t help but smile!  I feel like I have all of a sudden been transported back in time and I absolutely love it.  Plus, cast iron infuses iron into your food…  which is a VERY good thing!

Cuisinart coffee/hot water maker - We use this coffee maker multiple times a day and it is by far the best coffee maker I have ever had!  The hot water is so great for multiple bowls of oatmeal, tea, hot chocolate…  I love having both hot water and coffee at my fingertips!

These are a few of my favorite things!  (Are you singing along with me?)

Keep your eyes open for a few more of my favorite things lists coming up soon!

Loving our new Maytag fridge!

I sometimes don’t know how we survived without this beauty in our kitchen.  Even just the ice & water in the door, something we’ve never had before, seems so essential to us now.

Spoiled maybe?  Yes, absolutely.  But I’d rather think of it as a blessing than as a ‘spoiling’!

I had no real problems with my old fridge, but I would never choose to go back after trying out this big beautiful new Maytag Ice20 French Door Refrigerator.

Yes, my whole family loves the ice and water in the door (Hello?  Dr Pepper poured over a big glass of freshly crushed ice?  Heavenly!)…  but do you wanna know my favorite thing about this fridge?

I just love how deep and roomy it is!

I love that I can go grocery shopping, come home, put away all the groceries, make a big pot of soup, and still be able to fit that whole pot of soup easily into the fridge to reheat the next day.

I can thaw roasts & turkeys, and I can prep slow cooker meals the night before, without ever even worrying about wether or not I will be able to fit that stuff into the fridge!

I also love the extra middle fridge drawer.  We keep it stocked with fruits and veggies, and even Bjørn & Haakon (3 1/2 & 2 years old!) love to grab their own apples and carrots.  They feel so grown up, and all of a sudden eating veggies is fun for my picky toddlers.  How is that not a great thing?!

With the holiday baking season in full swing, this beautiful fridge is getting a workout.  And I am grateful for it every single day when I walk into my kitchen!

Want to hear some other moms’ thoughts on their Maytag appliances?  Check out Maytag’s facebook and twitter pages!

“I wrote this post participating in an Maytag Moms Dependable Kitchen Ambassador program by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Maytag. I was provided with a Maytag kitchen appliances set, including a refrigerator, microwave, dishwasher, and range to facilitate my post.”

 

my top 10 uses for coconut oil

The main use I enjoy coconut oil for is a butter substitute in baking.  I don’t do it all the time, because I do love my butter, but I use coconut oil about half the time in my baked goods.  Especially if something would benefit from a tiny little additional hint of coconut!  (Coconut Mocha Fudge Brownies, for example!)

I also love to use it frying and roasting foods.  Just the same as you would use olive oil.  (Sesame Garlic Green Beans, stir-fried in coconut oil!)

Every time we eat oatmeal (almost every day for my kids) we stir in a spoonful of coconut oil into each bowl.  Adds a yummy boost of healthy fat, and makes the bowls easier to clean in the end.  It’s a win-win!

We also melt it with butter for a healthier popcorn topping.  I actually can’t remember the last time I have made popcorn with just butter.  Sometimes I use only coconut oil, but usually I do about 2/3 coconut oil to 1/3 butter.  Start with less and work your way up as you get used to the flavor!

I also love to use it on my body as a body lotion…  whipped up like this is a nice way to keep it handy in the bathroom!

On that same note, coconut oil makes an amazing diaper cream.

I like to rub a bit into my hair, especially in the winter, for a bit of shine and extra leave-in conditioning.

I also use it to get cradle crap, excuse me, I mean ‘cradle cap’ off my babies scalps.  Rub a generous amount onto the area several times over the course of 24 hours and then take a fine-toothed comb and comb out the flakes.  Easy-peasy and hasn’t bugged my babies one bit!

Of course I use it on my hands.  I have been known to take a bit extra out when I am baking something and rub it all over my hands.  Smells good and feels even better!  (It’s amazing how something that seems like it would be greasy can be so not greasy on your skin.)

And of course, I use coconut oil all the time as chapstick.  Mmmm…

Recently I have switched completely to coconut oil as an eye makeup remover.  And I was incredibly picky before.  I only wear waterproof mascara, and a little whipped coconut oil on cotton round, sprinkled with a bit of water, makes a perfect, non-irritating makeup remover!

Also, for those of you nursing mamas out there…  coconut oil makes a great healing oil for any *ahem* discomforts of any kind.  And it doesn’t need to be washed off before baby eats, which is always a plus!

I also swish a spoonful of it around in my mouth whenever I think of it, and especially when I have tooth pain…  it always seems to help!

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From Nutiva‘s website (the brand we use most…  this post is not endorsed by them, I just like their product best!) : “Coconut oil is about 50 percent lauric acid, a rare medium-chain fatty acid found in mother’s milk that supports healthy metabolism and is now being studied for its anti-fungal, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial, health-protecting properties. Overall, coconut oil contains 92% saturated fats, and only 1% Omega-6, the fat Americans get way too much of.”

Oh, and in case you’re curious:  I bought this huge 78oz tub at Costco in the middle of September and we’re already half-way done with it.  I think I’ve used most of it in brownies!  :o)

If your Costco doesn’t have it, or you don’t have a Costco, Amazon has some great subscribe-and-save deals on coconut oil!

I’d love to know…  What are your favorite uses for coconut oil?