Mediterranean Diet for July 2015 PDF Print Write e-mail

July was suppose to be the Mediterranean Diet but July has posed one challenge after another. The biggest has been a vacation to Bermuda (highly recommend it!). Trying to follow any diet is impossible. Practitioners listen up! We generally try and get our food from a local grocery store for at least lunch and dinner. In Bermuda a 1/2-cup of raw spinach was nearly $9 and a tomato was $3. Cost of food in Bermuda was outrageous. For breakfast I ended up having bread and cheese and Bolthouse Strawberry Banana Smoothie. Lunch was bread cheese and tomato with an apple and snack type foods. Alcoholic beverages (which is allowed on the Mediterranean Diet) were generally part of our evening meal routine, which always occurred at one restaurant or another. I did stick to fish and vegetables for the most part but you could taste the richness of the foods. Hard to say how many calories, mgs of fat... was consumed. I can tell you my belly felt it. My system was off and the scale was up when I returned. I fell back to my traditionally eating pattern and boosted exercise. It took 3 days to feel normal again and 8 days to return to my baseline weight. Yikes! I am finishing the month with the Mediterranean diet with incorporates healthy fats like olive oil, fruit and vegetables and fish. I think if I were to analyze my typical eating - it most closely follows this diet. More to come. 

Dean Ornish for June 2015 PDF Print Write e-mail

Dean Ornish is a cardiologist who was able to clinically demonstrate an actually reversal in the progression of atherosclerotic plaques in coronary arteries through diet and lifestyle changes. Be forewarn though, the diet is extremely fat restrictive, and in general very rigid overall especially in terms of allowance of calorie dense or "junk" type foods. Exercise is also very prominent in this diet. For me, I generally follow a vegan based diet -although I did increase fish intake while on this diet. I increased my complex carbs and decreased fats - even my healthy fats. What I found was a decline in my overall energy and a decline in my ability to exercise at the level I generally exercised at. I had to cut my exercise time short more often than not. In addition, I was hungrier. I didn't enjoy the restrictions of this diet or the way I felt on it.
I think this diet has benefits for that advanced cardiac patient but adherence to this meal plan is tough especially if you dislike things like plan FF yogurt, vegetables and fish. The 'Eat More, Weigh Less' motto follows the idea that the volumetric has. You can eat a lot more if you choose low calorie foods.

I have read this book before so that wasn't an issue - more so having the time to try out the recipes was. I really had no time to do this and unfortunately my husband was unavailable as well so I can't honestly evaluate the recipes. I remained calorie neutral for the most part but as I said, I was hungrier and I exercised less - so I needed to keep this in mind to remain weight neutral.

Volumetrics Diet choice for May 2015 PDF Print Write e-mail
Volumetrics was the diet choice for May.
The idea behind this diet is utilizing low calorie foods such as fruit and vegetables and broth based soups. Losing the energy density foods so you can eat more. 
The idea behind the diet was developed by a Penn State nutrition professor named Barbara Rolls. Following the plan does lend to a nutritionally exceptable meal plan but it falls short in teaching the concepts of portion control and general balance. Following the diet was easy in some regards because I didn't have to make any changes to my normal eating pattern, but it was difficult for me because I don't eat volume - I'm a grazer. I stayed away from soups because I simply don't like them. I do think this diet offers some valid options for those who are volume eaters but trying to lose weight so practitioners keep this diet in mind. Given how busy my life had been in May - I never finished reading the 3 books on Volumetrics that I purchased. I didn't find them overly interesting, but I'm not sure I can fairly state that given how may directions I was in at the time. I also never followed any of the meal plans from start to finish. I did stick to the concepts and my personal calorie range with no change in weight. I had no adverse affects from the diet what so ever.
Dr. Poly's 12 months of Diets Continues PDF Print Write e-mail
Soooo - Life has been insane so my bloggling activities have fallen back greatly. Does that mean my 12 month diet experiment has as well - the answer is yes and no. I did follow the concepts of Volumetrics in May, Dean Ornish in June and working on the Mediterranean diet for July. Read about my successes and failures in my separate blogs on each month.

Mayo Clinic for March PDF Print Write e-mail
"The Mayo Clinic Diet: A weight-loss program for life"

March has been a dream using the Mayo Clinic Diet, because I didn't have to alter my usual diet or lifestyle habits at all. (I could have milk!) It felt like cheating, but it was refreshing to note that there was one diet plan I could fully support. The plan promotes eating a nutrient balanced, portion controlled, meal plan; drink plenty of water and exercise. The book is an easy read, written by experts and loaded with advice supported by research that I already share with my patients.

They claim that, "The purpose of the Mayo Clinic Diet is to help you lose excess weight and to find a way of eating that you can enjoy for a lifetime. The Mayo Clinic Diet aims to teach you how to choose healthy foods and portions and to develop healthy lifestyle habits so that you can maintain a healthy weight for life."

This is a general nutrition and lifestyle guide, meaning it doesn't indivdualize based on medical issues, allergens, family history, etc. But most of the suggestions can be implemented by all with good outcomes. Experts weigh in on how to change behaviors, nutrition tips and exercise suggestions. Although this plan has been around for years - the information in it still holds true today.

April plan was going to be Weight Watchers - however, when I entered my information including weight and height to pay for their online program - I was given this message:      

"Based on the information you provided, we’ve determined that our offerings are not suitable for you at this time.
  • Our offerings are not suitable for people with less than 5 pounds to lose. To be eligible, you must be at least 5 pounds above the minimum weight for your height and age according to the Weight Watchers Healthy Weight Ranges
    Thanks for visiting"

So as Weight Watchers will not let me join for April, I'm taking the suggestions of colleagues and following the 21 day Fix by Beach body.  Will keep you posted on results. Happy dieting!!
Paleo Begins -February's diet PDF Print Write e-mail
Paleo begins. Back to eggs. Salmon for breakfast (ugh!). No dairy, no grains, no legumes. Bye bye yogurt, peanut butter, cheese, milk, beans, peanuts, corn, peas. Say hello to bacon, bison, kelp, beef jerkey, coconut and lard. Reviewing 3 Paleo books and I can't find one menu plan I can possibly follow. I'm sticking to the no list which is so restrictive to someone like me who enjoys fruit yogurt smoothies, and triscuits with cottage cheese as a favorite snack. I look in my refrigerator and pantry and can't find a thing to eat. Thank goodness for my fresh organic blueberries and my refusal to give up my morning coffee - been there, done that  - now made with organic whole milk and raw coconut sugar as a 'if you have to have- choose this' - for me it's a survival must-but otherwise sticking to no dairy. I am eating blueberries throughout the day praying that I don't go back into full blown ketosis. Day 3 begins now!
More to come....
South Beach Diet Review for Phase 1 PDF Print Write e-mail

Diet Performance Review

Diet Information


 South Beach Diet


Arthur Agatston, M.D.

Review Period

January 1-7th 2015 - Phase 1






1 = Poor

2 = Fair

3 = Neutral

4 = Good

5 = Excellent

Weight Change








 No weight change








 Irritable; sleeplessness, nightmares

Energy level/Stamina







 Very lethargic, poor energy level,








 33% cost increase lots of Food wasted

Bowel Movement/ GI Symptoms







 Irregular times, skipped a day x3; Stomach pain, gassy, bloated

Emphasis on Exercise







 Exercise was virtually dismissed stating it’s important, but…no guidance at all

Nutrition Composition/Water







18% Carb/37%Protein/45%Fat – High in sodium, low in potassium, low in calcium, very little focus on water intake

Ease to Follow Plan







Recipes not difficult, but time consuming to prepare – also many were not appealing

Overall Rating (average the rating numbers above)

13/40 – 32.5%



Additional Comments

Many of the recipes were high in sodium. Meal plan not appetizing at times – such as veg juice in morning, eggs every day. Best recipes: Dilled Shrimp salad, Ham/Turkey roll-ups (use thin n trim deli meat); Veggie quiche cups; Worst recipes: Salmon w/rosemary, Balsamic chicken; Nice surprises: Cauliflower mash, Ricotta dessert recipes, spinach stuffed tomatoes


  In general, Phase 1 of South Beach was painful to follow. Restrictive, Expensive and Unappetizing. In addition, the side effects of  severe carbohydrate restriction leading to ketosis can cause headache, nausea, fatigue, dry mouth, bad breath, upset stomach, nausea, frequent urination, severe sleep problems and lack of mental clarity- which I was fortunate enough to eperience all of them, put me in such a bad state I can't how anyone sticks to Phase 1.

Book Review

Easy to Read, mixed messages – Not convinced it will ‘save your life’ – especially given how sick phase 1 made me – doesn’t promote good nutrition for life, or permanent lifestyle changes or exercise.

Exercise Journey- Take 2 PDF Print Write e-mail
My exercise is on the upswing. I have finally weaned off the side-effects of being on the South Beach diet (see my diet blog) and my energy level is back. I have been consistently working out 4 solid days a week and trying to be active the other 3. My cardio is good and I'm starting to increase upper body strength. I'm surprised at how long it is taking me this time around. I'm older and I have my joint issues than before. The good news is that I haven't notice the arthritis that I genetically possess (mainly in my hands). Knees and wrists though remind me frequently to be cautious. Ending my routine in a heated pool has been a life saver not only for the winter blues but to help stretch and relax my joints. Let's see what February brings...
<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 Next > End >>

Page 1 of 5