April 1, 2020 by Jason Rice MD
Wow. It’s been almost five years since I’ve posted anything. Hard to believe.
Today’s post will be something a little different. In the past few years, things have been busy. And, when things get busy, eating right seems to be one of the first things we abandon in favor of convenience and comfort foods.
Unfortunately, that also results in weight gain. Kind of a lot of weight gain, really.
Now, I’m really not one to “diet,” so I needed to figure out my own way to lose weight while still eating things I like. My general weight loss advice to patients has always been to cut 500 total calories per day and lose 1-2 lbs per week. So, I figured I’d put my own advice to work and reduce my calories while eating things I like.
Go figure, it actually worked.
At my peak, I hit 235 lbs, and currently I’m 191 lbs.
44 lbs down, and only 6 lbs heavier than my high school graduation day weight.
I’m still stretching to get down to that high school weight, but even if I don’t, I feel much healthier already.
So, what’s the point? This is a cooking blog, so just suggesting people eat less isn’t much of a “recipe” I suppose.
What I really found was that I still wanted to be able to eat a nice dinner, so I needed to reduce my calories earlier in the day. I will go into more details of how I worked this all out in a future post, but for now, I want to at least share something that’s a recipe with some pictures of food before this post gets any more boring…
So, here is a breakfast that I have eaten many mornings over the past several months. I am not a fan of sweet things early in the day, and it’s hard to do savory breakfasts quickly and without a ton of calories.
It’s also important to make sure you still get enough protein and other good things for your body. Weight loss is good, starvation is bad. (Hmmm… when this thing goes viral, that’s going on t-shirts. Ha!)
My go-to weekday morning breakfast now consists of “stuffed mushrooms” with a side of berries, black coffee and non-alcoholic bloody mary.
Here’s what you’ll need to make it my way, but you will see there is a lot of room to customize this to your own taste.
- Mushrooms, cremini or white, washed with stems removed
- Low fat cottage cheese (Fat free has more sugar, so the low fat is my preference)
- Sriracha, Huy Fong Chili Garlic Sauce, or any thick hot sauce of your choosing
- Salt, pepper or other seasoning of your choice
Wash the mushrooms and pull out the stems. (Eat them if you’re into that sort of thing, or save them to add to a vegetable stock – but that’s another post.)
Put a healthy dose of hot sauce into the cavity of the mushroom. I alternate between Sriracha and the thick chili garlic sauce.
Top it off with a dollop of cottage cheese, and then season to taste. For months, I was using kosher salt and a little black pepper, but I recently started using a seasoned salt blend from a great BBQ place in Nashville. Season however you like to complement the flavors you’re using in the hot sauce.
That’s it, eat and enjoy. I usually make six of these for myself, which keeps me plenty full until lunchtime, especially combined with a handful of blueberries. (Yes, the image is unnecessary, I know you know what blueberries look like – but, these sure do look pretty…)
Along with the mushrooms and berries, I like to make a bloody mary (no vodka on the weekdays, obviously). I use low sodium V8 as a low calorie healthy base, and season to taste. Prepared bloody mary mixes are usually loaded with sugar and other empty calories, so I prefer to make my own. The photo below shows the collection of stuff I usually use along with pinch of the seasoned salt from above.
Finally, some coffee if you’re so-inclined. This is another place people end up drinking a lot of empty calories. My suggestion is to invest in good coffee and a good coffeemaker or pourover dripper. Good coffee made well is delicious black without any added calories. Definitely worth the investment.
I’ll try to add more ideas in the coming days, especially if COVID-19 keeps less patients coming to my office… Stay safe, stay healthy, and eat well!