Friday, September 24, 2010

Eat to Live - sort of

I mentioned in my last blog post that I went on the Eat to Live diet for 2 weeks. And that I lost 4 pounds on it. I bought the book and was very determined. I'm not finished with the diet; I just got off track a little for various reasons. I think that it forced Ryan and me into some very great habits, though. We're saving money, too, which is an added bonus beyond our health.

I also checked out Joel Fuhrman's book Disease Proof Your Child from the library. I think I was hoping for some kind of diet recommendation that was new to me, and I was absolutely motivated to stick with it. However, it really was pretty close to how I feed the kids already. Great book, though, and I'm still poring through it.

I have been making a lot of homemade salsa lately. I was just sure that these ingredients would make the most beautiful salsa.

However, I kind of ended up with salsa soup. This was my first salsa-making attempt. (It tasted good, though, and I ate it all.)

I'm getting better at it.

I made these veggie burgers based on Fuhrman's recipe (but I used beans from scratch, not canned). Same ingredients (sunflower seeds, oats, beans, ketchup, and spices); I just didn't go through all the steps of baking them. It tastes delicious before you even cook it. We have went through a lot of these lately, which is good since I'm used to paying $4+ for a box of FOUR veggie burgers.

Our new obsession is roasted asparagus. I had some from the Whole Foods deli awhile back, and it was one of the BEST tasting foods I've ever put into my mouth. MY asparagus doesn't taste quite as good as that (I don't know how they did it - maybe it was drenched in oil?), but it's still great. I love squeezing lemon on it after I take it out of the oven. I spray oil on the kids' but leave it off Ryan's and mine.

I am a cereal addict; however, I mostly ate fruit (sometimes with a sprinkling of nuts) for breakfast. I also ate my steel cut oats, but I definitely used the oats as more of a condiment.

This soup is loosely based on the "Famous Anti-Cancer Soup" recipe in Fuhrman's book. (The only reason I don't follow it exactly: it's a little more time-consuming. You're supposed to juice celery and carrots for the base. One of these days, I'll get around to that.)

I basically just pour a container of low sodium vegetable broth into a pot and add water. Then I just throw in whatever odds and ends of vegetables I have lying around. (This particular batch I stuck with the original recipe: split peas, onions, zucchini, leeks, carrots, and celery. It also has cashews.) You don't even have to chop them. When the veggies are slightly soft, I puree it all in my BlendTec. (You also leave some of the split peas whole at the bottom of the pot, then pour the pureed mixture back into the pot.)

After my second batch of soup, I was getting a little tired...of soup. I added some extra split peas into this bowl to "liven things up" a bit.

This is what my typical meal looked like while I was following the diet.

I love salads like this so much that it wasn't a big change to have a salad as one meal a day. I always use my favorite recipe for dressing: Vegan Caesar. It doesn't contain oil (although it does use almonds).

This is why I said "Eat to Live - sort of" - I'm sure not every ingredient I used is technically part of the diet. I used Bragg's. I did put a very small amount of salt in my salsa. I sprinkled Kelp Granules on my soup. I'm just trying to cut way back on salt, and I have to find ways to live through this. After about a week, it did get easier.

This past month we've moved over to what I call the "Wal-Mart Diet" (which I'll explain another day). Basically, it's part of our money-saving venture. We were doing SO WELL with our budget. I thought we were going to end up spending A THIRD of what we normally spend on food a month. Then Wednesday night, I cracked, just a little over a week before the month's end. I went to Whole Foods and filled my cart. I didn't feel proud of myself so hopefully I've learned my lesson. However, I hadn't had sliced bread in WEEKS.

I just wanted a sandwich.

And it was so good. Funny that my carrot, chickpea, tomato, salsa, avocado, mustard, miso sandwich was so scandalous to me. It was just the price ($5.99 for a dinky loaf of hemp bread) that was scandalous to my Wal-Mart diet. It was the dozen biscuits I made and ate over a 24 hour period that made me realize I needed to go to Whole Foods and buy a few things to help curb my cravings.


BTW, what happened to Stacy (Shorty Can Burn)? Did she announce she was shutting down her blog?

I finally added comments to your responses to my last posts. I'm trying to get better about that. And Ryan thinks the only reason anyone said he was "handsome" was the food. He says you would have thought that of any man with raw, vegan food in front of him. I said that he makes a good point. BUT that he is handsome, anyway. :)

And I really don't always eat an entire citrus fruit one juice pocket at a time. I just really like how they feel in my mouth. But I didn't want you to think I'm that much of a woman of leisure.


  1. Congrats on the diet. Love seeing all the new cooking you're doing. WF's is always a budget buster for me. I just can't seem to control myself when I get there. I love that "I just wanted a sandwich" ;-)

  2. Good for you on E2L, it is rough to stick with at first (been there done that). But you are right it does get much easier the longer you do it. The salt was really tough for me too. But I don't miss it now.

    Your hubby is funny, BTW. ;-)


  3. Other than a few specialty items, I do shop most of my stuff at WM, I am the only vegan in the house, Buddha Bear is mostly vegetarian by his own choice (quite comical because he is 2). So because I buy for 4 adults, a tween and a toddler (and 3 cats); it is more cost effective for our budget to shop there. I personally would rather shop at Publix - which carries so much more of the specialties (Bragg's, Spectrum, etc - I was so ecstatic when I noticed they had Tofutti ice cream). I like the atmosphere there and the freshness and quality of everything you find in the produce section.

    Your first batch of salsa is how I actually new salsa throughout my childhood. That's because we usually were making it from our frozen stashes of peppers and tomatoes. So it looks so normal to me - lol.

    My week-point for my conversion is cheeseburgers. I was such a cheeseburgery person. Right now my favorite is a sprouted lentil, walnuts, oat and mushroom burger with a bit of nooch and ground flaxseed (I also use some other seasonings depending on what the side veggies I am making).

    Your first soup is making me want cheesey cream of broccoli. I cannot wait to see what else you are "dieting" with on your menu.

  4. I love cooking with dry beans that I know how to make them that is. I used to always use canned. I have no idea what happened with Stacy from Shorty Can Burn. I think she just shut down and didn't say anything.

  5. aww handsome AND humble. nice:) i love the salsa pictures, my first time came out in slurry form too:) aaaand..i ate it all anyway just like you!lol. hmmm the walmart diet. look forward to that. three weeks with no bread is huge!! i always think about how hard the e2l diet would be for somebody that isnt already vegan, i mean, it was hard enough and i was already doing lots of what he said. i really like following it though. it makes sense.oh and you are not alone in following it "closely" i do the best that i can.salt was more difficult than i imagined it would be.


  6. Hey I've tried making salsa too, and it was good the first batch or two then I got tired of it...just the same flavor everytime ya know. Also, your veggie burgers looked good, I'll have to try that recipe. I can never get mine to hold their form, but you're so right about the price savings! ( :

  7. Kelp rebel.
    You should be proud of yourself! You have to wiggle a little bit on a diet so that it fits into your real life. Matt makes good salsa. You should use his recipe as a base for you.
    And watch out, I think dirtyduck is trying to steal your man.

  8. Eat To Live, I know that rings a bell but I can't think of that the one that has you eat only fruit in the mornings? I'm rusty on my diet stats! :P

  9. I'll be eager to hear about the Wal Mart diet. I do most of my shopping at Trader Joe's and our local mainstream grocery store. I do like WF, though, and go there for specialty items. I find those specialty items to be expensive, and other things like produce and stuff are the the same price at WF. I would probably have a different attitude if I didn't have a Trader Joe's.

    Stacy's last post said she was busy with work and would be cutting back on her posts and also trying to figure out why she was posting and what she wanted to do with her blog, but I was surprised to she her completely shut down.

  10. Good for you trying to be even healthier. We're still busy with the Feingold diet over here, eliminiating preservatives, artificial colors and flavors and even certain fruits and veggies. It's hard work, but our children are worth it! And, that's one crazy, chunky sandwich, girl!

  11. I want to hear about the Walmart Diet. Sounds up my alley.

  12. Congrats on the diet! I do most of my shopping at WM and Kroger. When I get the chance, I take the 1 hour plus drive to Memphis to go to WF. That's only happend once so far...ha
    I've done the same thing with salsa. It always taste good any way though... :o)
    I use a lot of canned beans, but am trying to get better about cooking with dry ones. I just don't have much time on my hands for a lot of cooking.

  13. Yeah, the E2L diet isn't too huge of a stretch for the likes of's mostly that salt that I have a hard time with.

    Michelle, it's a good thing that WF is only 30 minutes, rather than an hour because I'm pretty sure I would make the hour trip, too. Good for you and your self control.

    Feingold diet - I do remember reading a bit about some of you on it. I'm going to look it up now. I'm good with the artificial stuff - I've got that one conquered entirely. It's just the salt and bread, etc. The Daiya.

    Jessica, thanks for the Stacy update. We don't have a Trader Joe's. I guess it's substantially cheaper?

    Amber, E2L is basically just avoiding processed food - I don't think you have to just eat fruit, there are other menu options. Cut out bread and salt...limit your amount of nuts if you're doing it for serious weight loss. It's for health, but it's also one of the diets more geared for weight loss.

    Cary, yes, I'm keeping an eye on dirtyduck. She's a sneaky one. And I did indeed ask Matt about his salsa.