Why I Eat Paleo And Not Crap…..

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My Guy Bri ❤ and Me

I get asked often if I’m Paleo to lose weight.  The answer is no. I also get asked if I’m allergic to Dairy, Gluten or Legumes.  The answer is NO.  Then why would I put myself through the (what must seem to others) torture of a Paleo Diet?!???  The answer is, it helps my pain.  Then the conversation continues to people asking me what causes my pain. The answer is I DO NOT KNOW.  My doctors DO NOT KNOW.  Even with their lack of knowledge, the prescribe me medications.  I’ve been labelled as having Fibromyalgia.  There is no test for this, it is a process of elimination.  Nothing else seems to be causing the pain in my muscles and joints, sometimes so severe that I hardly leave my bed, so it must be this phantom disease called Fibromyalgia.  There are treatments for this disease, although NO CURE.  I can take pills to alter my brain function, pills to alter my nerve function or I can change my diet.  I opted to change my diet. I started October ’14.

Lovey Levin and Mom

Lovey Levin and Mom

I started by cutting a little bit of the “offending” food at a time. So in October, I gave up Gluten.  That wasn’t hard for me because my son, Lovey Levin, was still GF at that point. In December, I gave up Dairy.  That nearly killed me. I can almost guarantee that the majority of my diet was cheese.  I shit you not!  I put cheese on everything, with almost every meal.  February, I cut all Grains and Legumes.  SHIT HIT THE FAN, literally…. I was on the toilet more often than not.

Rosie and Me

Rosie and Me

The good news was that my pain was gone.  That said, I was going #2 so often that I was becoming dehydrated.  My fingers would swell. I went back to my doctor and had to go through an Upper and Lower GI exploratory.  It turned out that I had some kind of distress in my intestines.  They prescribed another medication.  I declined.  I added some rice back to my diet.  My #2 problem miraculously went away.  No medication needed.

So now I have my diet set so I can eat well and have no pain.

My Boo Drew and Me

My Boo Drew and Me

I still don’t eat white potatoes, I take it easy on tomatoes, I DO eat rice and my pain level has been reduced by 85%, easily!  My family has been great about meeting my needs.  They are more than willing to be guinea pigs to my recipes and my attempts to modify our regular recipes.  We’ve had some nasty, horrible duds; mostly it’s been great.  I don’t buy things that come in a box; things that are overly processed or prepackaged.   My family is eating healthier because I got sick. I am healthier because I got sick.  I managed to lose over 60 pounds through diet and exercise (which I can now do, because the pain is so much less). There’s always a silver lining!

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Mushroom Smothered Pork Chops – Are You KIDDING Me?!?!

One of the things I’ve missed since going Paleo is Mushroom Soup! You can make so many things awesome with a great Mushroom Soup. So I really wanted to make Pork Chops (the really thick yummy kind) awesome with some kind of mushroom soup.  I scoured the internet drooling over so many recipes until I found this one from Fast Paleo. It was so easy and it tasted amazing!! My family said that this one is definitely going in “THE BOOK” of fabulous food! I altered the original recipe a bit, because I don’t know how to follow a recipe…. sorry 🙂


Ingredients:

  • 4 thick pork chopsIMG_7639
  • salt, pepper, thyme and rosemary to season chops
  • coconut oil
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 lb mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 T minced garlic
  • 1 T oregano
  • 1 C chicken broth
  • 1 C coconut milk (if you are using canned, I recommend mixing the whole can up really well, then pouring out 1 C for this meal)

Directions

  1. Season the chops with Salt, Pepper, Thyme and Rosemary – I put on a pretty good coating.
  2. Medium / High heat, melt coconut oil and fry the pork chops 5 minutes on each side. Remove from pan.
  3. Saute onions and mushrooms for 5 minutes, add garlic and saute for another 3 minutes, add oregano and saute until most liquid is gone.IMG_7642
  4. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low / medium and add pork chops back in the pan. Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Uncover and simmer for another 5 minutes.
  5. Pour in coconut milk, turn the heat back up to medium / high, bring to a boil then simmer for 10-15 minutes until sauce is reduced by a third to half.

I had a side salad with this for myself (I’m the only one who is Paleo) and my family had some pasta and a salad.

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Nutrition Facts
Servings 4.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 329
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 23 g 35 %
Saturated Fat 16 g 81 %
Monounsaturated Fat 4 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 57 mg 19 %
Sodium 279 mg 12 %
Potassium 747 mg 21 %
Total Carbohydrate 10 g 3 %
Dietary Fiber 2 g 7 %
Sugars 4 g
Protein 24 g 47 %
Vitamin A 0 %
Vitamin C 13 %
Calcium 5 %
Iron 18 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Meatloaf and Meatballs, OH MY! (Paleo Style)

square meatloaf

As any busy parent knows, bulk cooking certain things can make life SOOO much easier.  I decided to make Meatloaf and Meatballs together because the base is the same, just the seasonings are different.  This was super easy and Lovey Levin helped me!

Look at all these veggies!

Look at all these veggies!

Ingredients for Base Meat:

  • 2 lbs Ground Pork
  • 2 lbs Ground Beef
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 2 large carrots, minced
  • 1 lb mushrooms, minced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced

Meatloaf Seasoning

1/4 C dried parsley

2 t Thyme

Bacon for later 5 slices, raw

Meatball Seasoning

1/2 T salt

1 T caraway seeds

1 T paprika

1/2 t black pepper

1/4 C dried parsley

1 t thyme


Here are simple directions to make all this meaty goodness in one fell swoop.

MEAT

MEAT

  1. Mince your veggies one at a time in a food processor, using the pulse option!! HUGE TIMERSAVER!
    • I quartered my mushrooms, onions and carrots to allow for better mincing.
  2. Fry it up in a little fat or oil of your choosing. I used coconut oil. Saute until cooked down, about 10 minutes.
  3. Allow to cool, put in fridge if you are in a rush. I let mine sit on the stove top while I washed up the dishes from cutting the veggies.
  4. Put your 4lbs of meat into a really large mixing bowl.
  5. Add in the eggs and seasonings for meatloaf.
    square meatloaf

    square meatloaf

    • 1/2 C dried parsley and 1 T thyme
  6. Mix well, by hand. Little hands love this!!
  7. Fill your loaf pans and top with Bacon.
    • I like to cut my bacon in half and lay it along the short end of my loaf pan.  This time I happened to be out of throw away loaf pans (I’ll be freezing this for later use) and I used a square cake pan.  I didn’t need to cut the bacon.
  8. Add meatball seasoning to the remaining meat (NOT thyme or parsley)
  9. Mix well.
  10. Roll into balls and place on cookie tray or press into mini muffin pans (I use mini IMG_7612muffin pans!)
  11. Bake at 350F
    • Meatloaf for 50 minutes
    • Meatballs for 25 minutes
  12. Drain fat when done.
  13. Enjoy!

    meatcupcakes

    meatcupcakes

I freeze both of these meat dishes for future use! It only takes about 30 minutes of my time (not including cooking time).  This is also a great way to get some veggies into your kids’ bellies. My kids devour both of these things.  My daughter is notorious for eating both cold from the fridge.  It really is THAT GOOD!

Nutrition Facts for Paleo Meatballs
Servings 10.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 275
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 19 g 29 %
Saturated Fat 7 g 37 %
Monounsaturated Fat 8 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 1 g
Cholesterol 115 mg 38 %
Sodium 439 mg 18 %
Potassium 463 mg 13 %
Total Carbohydrate 3 g 1 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 5 %
Sugars 1 g
Protein 22 g 45 %
Vitamin A 29 %
Vitamin C 5 %
Calcium 4 %
Iron 14 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.
Nutrition Facts for Paleo Meatloaf
Servings 8.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 396
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 30 g 47 %
Saturated Fat 7 g 37 %
Monounsaturated Fat 3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 142 mg 47 %
Sodium 1111 mg 46 %
Potassium 450 mg 13 %
Total Carbohydrate 5 g 2 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 6 %
Sugars 3 g
Protein 26 g 51 %
Vitamin A 43 %
Vitamin C 7 %
Calcium 5 %
Iron 8 %

Poosents? I like Poosents!

Subscription Boxes! YAY!!! I love them! I’ve tried a few. Some for myself (The monthly box that comes full of tampons and chocolates!! That one was great, but pretty expensive.) Some foodie ones (Gluten free, that I cancelled right away! How dare they say GF but be manufactured in a facility that also manufactures wheat?!?) I’ve tried some for Levin (Bluum, Honest Company). But my favorite box is the one I get for Lovey Levin every month. It’s called Citrus Lanecitrus laneJanuary’s Citrus Lane box                                                                                                                                              Lovey Levin loves play food, so getting Plan Toys three piece “cut” food was wonderful ($8.30 + $7 shipping = $15.30 – Plan Toys) . Faber Castell Duo Tip markers in such a beautiful array of colors ($10 – Amazon) did not come amiss. We used them to color on wooden race-cars (from February’s box)!  Zig Zag Zebra, which is a beautiful coloring book, a little bit old for Lovey Levin, but beautiful still ($6.29 – Amazon) We put this item away until he’s old enough to use it. Finally, Mommy’s Bliss for Kids, is a homeopathic remedy for an upset stomach ($9.74 – Amazon). We haven’t had to use this yet, but I didn’t think it would hurt to have on hand given Lovey Levin’s intolerance and reaction to Gluten. Maybe it will help him! The total value of January’s box is $41.33, I paid $16.33. That offered me a $25 value over what I paid. So it may not seem like I got much in my box, but it had good value. Plus, Lovey Levin LOVES LOVES LOVES his fruit and his markers. I know he will love his coloring book and hopefully, the Mommy’s Bliss for Kids may be helpful to him, as well.

February’s Citrus Lane Box

1966641_10152253297480505_331553732_o(1)Lovey Levin really liked his February box. His box contained more from Plan Toys, this time a practice shoe for lacing ($9.28 – Amazon). He enjoyed pulling the laces out of it. He got to pick out which Skip Hop bin ($14.99) he got this month, and he picked the owl. It’s a good size and will hold some of his toys! The book was AWESOME this month! Skip Through the Seasons ($6.99 – Amazon) by Stella Blackstone. What a truly awesome book! It’s a seek and find book with beautiful illustration! There was also an Apple lotion that didn’t smell like Apples to me. My nine year old daughter took it over so I can’t even price it… SORRY! I would guess around $3.00.  We also do the add ons, sometimes. 1902206_10152253353405505_2036520927_oThis month we added on Melissa and Doug Race cars. I purchased two of them because I had an email with $10 off a purchase and this total came to $9.50, they retail for $7.15 each totaling $14.30 on Amazon. So total value this month was $48.56 ($34.26 without add ons) and I paid $16.33, as I do each month. That offered me a value of $32.23 over what I paid ($22.73 without add ons).

 

March Citrus Lane Box

 

March Citrus Lane Box

March Citrus Lane Box

Look at all the wonderful things in our box this month!!! WOO HOO! We got the Skip Hop Elephant back pack ($18.64 – Amazon). This was added on this month for $20 (I happened to have a credit so I didn’t pay anything for this item!). Lovey Levin hasn’t gotten his little hands on this item yet as it will show up in his Easter Basket.  Next is the  Petit Collage Safari Animal Puzzle ($13.00 – Amazon). Lovey LOVES this puzzle. I thought it would be too tough on him but it’s not. It’s just challenging enough for him! He loves digging out the colors to sort the animals before he attempts to put it together.10148661_10152308853080505_859193918_o He must pull this puzzle out at least ten times a day! We also got Eco Dough ($6.94 – Amazon). I put this away for a give away gift. It contains Gluten and Lovey Levin will sometimes put things in his mouth. I did go to the website of the manufacturer and found out that they do make a Gluten Free option!! That’s pretty cool. While I doubt I will order any (we make our own gluten free play doh) it’s nice to know there are options! Little Adventures Power Mask Red/Blue, which were another add-on this month purchased for a total of $6.00 but I used a credit, ($3.99 + $1.99 shipping = $5.98 x 2 = $11.96 – Amazon) have been a hilarious prop in my house since our box came! Levin will run around shouting “SUPER HERO LEVIN” It’s quite the sight to see! Next is the purple10148777_10152320648535505_1913511890_o Medi-Buddy ($6.99 – Amazon). I opened this up and it looks well stocked with plenty of good stuff. I plan on keeping it in my car! Finally there’s the CleanWell Hand Sanitizing Wipes Orange & Vanilla ($6.65- Amazon). I haven’t used these or even opened them yet. These are also going to go in the car.  I love things like this for when we go to playgrounds and restaurants. Keeping it clean! YEAH! So when I add all this stuff up, my total box value is $64.18 ($38.18 without my add ons). Total paid $16.33. That offered me a value of $47.85 over what I paid ($21.85 without add ons)!

If you are interested in giving Citrus Lane a try, you can use this link https://www.citruslane.com/invitedby/citrus.lane.508057 It will get you half off (50%) of your first box! I highly recommend this subscription service. It’s been great for us!! So many learning opportunities!