Days 8-13

Breakfast: Leftover banana coconut crockpot oatmeal

Lunch: Artichoke Lemon Pesto Chicken (alterations: I’m not fond of spaghetti squash, so I diced up a butternut squash, roasted it in the oven, and threw that in instead)

Dinner: Crockpot beef spare ribs (not that crazy about this recipe) with lots of sautéed zucchini and summer squash

I was thinking about how I’m going to eat after the Virgin Diet is over. Obviously, if it’s clear I have an intolerance to something, I won’t eat it. Even if I don’t though, I think I may stay mostly gluten, dairy, and sugar-free. I may use some occasional butter, raw honey, or maple syrup, but I think I’ll keep it fairly clean. I’ve been feeling pretty good and starting to notice subtle differences in my skin and body shape. Mostly though, I have no guilt about what I’m eating. I don’t have that dread after eating something I know I shouldn’t and wishing I could rewind just a little bit and not eat what I just ate. I also haven’t been eating when I’m bored. I guess when the food is more boring, you don’t eat for entertainment haha.

I love to cook and bake and don’t want to sacrifice that long term. I’ve been looking around a bit at paleo food blogs and have found some great resources for clean eating recipes for everyday food and treats as well. I’m sure I will occasionally (but hopefully not very often) have a treat that is totally junky (i.e. ice cream, Doritos, pizza, etc.), but I think after the Virgin Diet I’d like to put my creative baking energy into a weekly “clean treat”–an indulgent, sweet, delicious dessert made with paleo-friendly ingredients. I think this will be especially great for when we have kids someday to have an arsenal of yummy desserts made of ingredients that are helpful to the body.

I haven’t made desserts from any of these blogs yet (Virgin Diet, remember?), but here are some of the promising looking websites I’ve been perusing:

PaleOMG: Good everyday recipes with ingredients you probably either already have or have easy access to. She likes to eat, she seems to like dessert, and she is funny–what’s not to like?

Recipes I’ve been eyeing:

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Chocolate Mousse with Cinnamon Sauteed Bananas

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Chocolate “Peanut Butter” Ice Cream with Chocolate Shell

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Magic Brownie Bars

Civilized Caveman: Nice food photography, the guy seems to love bacon and pumpkin, and that’s alright with me.

Recipes I’ve been eyeing:

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Paleo Banana Bread

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Chocolate Bacon Almond Butter Bananas

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Macadamia Pumpkin Butter

Living Healthy with Chocolate: Competitive kite surfer from Hawaii who also likes to create healthy desserts.

Recipes I’ve been eyeing:

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Chocolate Cups with Coconut Whipped Cream and Fresh Berries

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Paleo Coconut Cream Pie

Yes to Yummy: Teen girl who decided to eat and cook healthy and start a blog–pretty impressive looking recipes for someone so young!

Recipes I’ve been eyeing:

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Healthier Fried Chicken

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Strawberry Almond Cupcakes

Last, but not least, the one I’m most excited about…

Clean Eating With a Dirty Mind: I think the title already explains how awesome this one is. The photos make you want to lick the computer screen.

Recipes I’ve been eyeing:

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Paleo Raw Mint Chocolate Tartlets

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Paleo Red Velvet Cupcakes

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Paleo Chocolate Cheesecake

Who’s hungry? It’s almost time for me to bust out my aprons and get crazy! 🙂

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Day 7

Foods for today:

Breakfast: This awesome banana coconut crockpot oatmeal.

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Do yourself a favor–make it! (alterations: I used full-fat coconut milk, omitted the brown sugar, and subbed coconut oil for the butter) I think if you’re going to have leftovers and reheat this it would probably taste better to throw in some fresh bananas. Our leftovers started to get a little mushy.

Lunch: Amy’s Soups Indian Dal Golden Lentil, fresh carrots and snap peas (not all of Amy’s Soups are Virgin Diet friendly, so check your labels)

Dinner: Good-sized ribeye steak, huge mound of steamed broccoli, and these coconut lemon meltaways (alteration: substituted a few dates for the added sugar) which honestly weren’t anything special

Confession 1: I’m fairly experienced with cooking and baking, but I don’t know how to cook steak. I looked it up online, followed the directions exactly, and…ate a slightly overcooked steak haha. The flavor was great, but a little too chewy for my liking.

Confession 2: I’m not that crazy about vegetables. They’re soooo boring! I mean, I like plenty of vegetables (as in, I don’t think they’re gross and maybe enjoy them a little bit on occasion), but they never sound like the most interesting choice. Hmmm, should I eat a sweet, tart apple with rich, creamy almond butter, or…celery. Lame. I like salads if someone else makes one for me, but making salads is kind of high maintenance. If I’m going to put some work into food (and I do), it better taste better than a salad. Unfortunately, I think I’m gonna have to get over it. Veggies are a huge component of diets like the Virgin Diet or paleo. They add so many nutrients and so much bulk to a diet. I totally think it’s great to take pleasure in the different flavors of food–even indulgent, unhealthy foods sometimes–but it’s wrong to let the taste of what I’m eating 100% dictate what nutrition my body is getting. My mom always told us that when we make our eating choices based only on what tastes good we’re letting one tiny part, our tongue, overrule what the whole body needs to function well.

Goal: eat more veggies.