Monday, June 9, 2014

Monday Musings and Quick Paleo Pancakes

Well, hello.  

Some of you may know that I have a new job.  Last week was my first week as a SAHM / PT WAHM mom.  I have to say that it was a great week.  It was a little bit of a transition, but really, it was awesome.  I realized quickly how much I have missed and how stressed I had been for the last year.  With a full time job for me, EMX working major OT hours lately, one kid in karate (two nights a week), and a rambunctious 2 year old, and other commitments to church and family/friends and our own fitness commitments, I was beginning to run myself ragged trying to make sure that everyone was well fed (I'll get to that in a minute), dressed, bags packed, lunches/breakfasts/snacks ready, activities/HW complete, etc.

One thing that I just don't want to compromise on is healthy eating.  Yes, we do order pizza (or like last night, ahem, garbage plates) from time to time, but most of the time afterwards, I start to feel groggy, overfull and just kind of gross!

So what does eating healthy look like for us?  For the most part, EMX and I eat a paleo/primal diet.  EMX eats that way as a default since I do 99.9% of the cooking for our family and he has no choice to but eat what I make.  He still does get Bruegger's bagels though once a week and orders Chinese food at work on Fridays.  The kids do eat PB&J and bunny crackers and the like, but I do try and get the healthiest ingredients I can and would rather make something than buy a packaged version whenever possible.  (Even though now Reedster won't eat my PB&J, haha.  He has been choosing fruits, vegetables and nuts for lunch instead - which I'm obviously fine with.)

There have been a few articles and studies released lately that state that there is no thing such as "gluten sensitivity."  So while there may be no scientific proof that people can be sensitive to gluten, I will tell you what I have found in my very scientific research from the last year and a half - from when I did my first 21 Day Sugar Detox in February 2013.

- The first time I completed a sugar detox, I didn't do it to lose weight.  I was trying to find a way to fight the MAJOR cravings for cookies and cake that I started to have while pregnant with Giselle, and continued through the postpartum time while breastfeeding and then continued until she was almost 1, haha.  I initially thought that I would be a raging BRAT while doing the detox but what I found was actually the opposite.  By the end of the 21 days, I was downright euphoric.  I was honestly happy, energetic, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.  I had so much energy and was in such a good mood that it was VERY evident that the way I had been eating beforehand may not have been the best nutrition.  While I was eating a lot of fruit and veggies and meats before the detox, the whole grains and sugars in general were just not working for me.  I DID end up losing 5 lbs during those 21 days, which I didn't complain about.  I also did find that my sugar cravings were better controlled.  If I did have a major craving, the best treat to me was anything combined with almond butter. Dark chocolate is a great indulgence, but even a banana or apple with almond butter is DIVINE to me, lol.

- After the detox, I indulged in what I had been craving (or really THINKING I was craving) during the detox - a bagel.  I cut out a portion of the middle of the bagel because I was a little nervous that I may not feel all that great after eating it.  I ate it and probably an hour later, I was groggy and ended up having a sugar crash a few hours later.

- NOW, pretty much as soon as I eat something with gluten in it, I start to crave MORE sweets or breads.  It's INSANE.  Last night we ate garbage plates and even though I was disgustingly full after eating it, I HAD to eat something sweet.  I nibbled on mini marshmallows and then had some chocolate even though I was not hungry.  As a result, I felt pretty gross later on.

So, for me, and for our family, that's why we do eat mostly paleo/primal type foods.  It's funny because EMX can tell usually pretty quickly if I've been falling off the wagon with my eating habits by my mood and demeanor.  I will never ever claim to be paleo perfect.  If I want regular pizza with pepperoni and banana peppers, I'm going to eat it.  But I do try to eat paleo/primal foods 80% of the time.

This morning I was ready to get back on track after a day of eating not so healthy foods.   I saw this pin yesterday for the "best pancakes" - one banana mixed with two eggs and a dash of cinnamon.  This morning I decided to give it a whirl, even though honestly, most paleo/primal pancakes that I've tried haven't really come close to the real deal pancakes (especially the delicious ones we had a church yesterday morning).

The batter seemed a little thin to me so I added a few teaspoons of coconut flour in to thicken it up a little bit.  I think the reason why they tasted so good today vs in the past was a small (pun intended) difference.  Today I made the pancakes on the smaller size.  They were a little bigger than a half/dollar.  This made them cook more evenly.  I cooked them in a little bit of regular butter and topped with real maple syrup (the ONLY syrup in my opinion), and even had a few topped with just almond butter.  

G and I gobbled them up!  So quick, easy and delicious.  Even better, they are a healthy alternative to regular pancakes.

G loves pancakes!
The real test will be to have Reedster taste them when he gets home from school.  That boy is the pancake master taster.  :)

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