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Where the Quest for Natural Appetite Suppressants Led Me and a Massaged Kale Salad with Peanut Dressing.

Posted Mar 29 2011 12:02pm
If you are here for the food scroll directly down to the bottom.  Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. (Who knows what that saying is from?)


Where the Quest for Natural Appetite Suppressants Led Me

After a particularly gluttonous buffet recently, I found myself googling "natural appetite suppressants" and came across a really  eye opening article written by Mike Adams that struck a cord with me because no one ever says this in weight loss articles.  He didn't restate that you just need to eat less calories and work out more (yeah we all know that, DUH). Or try to sell me an appetite suppressant or even an herbal remedy.  He said I could take Hoodia gordonii and it would help a little but it won't turn off the hunger.

What he said was....if you want to lose weight without drugs you are going to have to experience some hunger and learn how to manage it.  I thought, well that was really refreshing.  It's not easy to tell someone they will be uncomfortable.

He went on to suggest five ways he combats severe hunger pangs with minimal calorie intake if you are about to cave and eat an entire cheesecake or something.  He calls them "Emergency Appetite Controls".  He listed:

1. Lots of water
2. A carton of organic broth that you would eat as a soup (I assume it would need to be low sodium too.  I came up with an option using miso which I will post soon.)
3. A huge salad with only 100 calories of dressing or a large amount of veggies stir "fried" with only water, soy sauce, onions and garlic
4. A type of banana pudding made with soy milk and
5. NATURAL pickles (I like this one!  I need to check at Native Sun because the conventional pickles have ingredients I can't pronounce.)
6. Apples (wait that was six items but even better!)

Ha! That sounds easy!  I can totally do this. 

I thought to myself wait, when was the last time you were hungry? 
Oh my God.  I can't remember.

And I'm not talking "Yeah I could eat" hunger.  I'm talking STOMACH GROWLING, have-no-doubt-I'm-hungry hunger.

A light bulb went off in my head.  I don't ever let myself actually get hungry. On a hunger scale of 1 to 10 where 10 is full I let myself get no less than a 6.  No wonder why I'm not losing the last bit of weight.  I just continue to maintain, which is great, BUT, I'm not losing. And for my own self satisfaction I need to lose that weight.

I had started out well that morning considering I had to go to the doctor for blood work so I HAD to fast. I passed through a bit of a nauseous stage and then seemed to do ok.
Weeeeell then I actually got hungry. Really hungry. And I realize that I suck at being hungry. I think I almost had a panic attack. Going forward I can't let myself get quite to a hunger level of "1" then.

I feel like I have lost touch with listening to my body.  I love Weight Watchers mind you, but when I think of how many times I ate just because I knew I had left over points for the day and because it was "time" to eat I realized it is all the time.  What scares me about not keeping tally of what I ate and giving up control, is that the times I did that I gained. 

When I wasn't restricted by the points system or calorie counting, the foods I was eating slowly changed.  Though I probably didn't feel any less or more full than when I was counting, a few more cookies slipped in instead of that celery I would munch on before dinner.

I'm not ready to give up on my security blankie right now so I will stick with the Weight Watcher for now but I also want to learn how to listen to my body again.  This is what I want:

1. Don't eat when simply bored.
2. Don't eat when not hungry even if it is "time" to eat.
3. Stop eating when full. Wait, not even then, BEFORE I'm full.

I look at my two year old daughter who sometimes just isn't hungry at breakfast. Or sometimes lunch. Or sometimes dinner.

BUT!! My brain screams. It's the most important meal of the day! She HAS to eat or....she will be hungry.

When it comes down to it, it's ok though.  She eats when she is hungry, doesn't when she is not and stops when she is satisfied and then goes out to play.  Even if it is gummy bears. Even if it is rice pasta.  She doesn't care about wasting very expensive rice yogurt.  All she knows is that she isn't hungry any more.

When do we lose this? I guess in between a mortgage, laundry, phone bills and general responsibility.

As adults a lot of us have those tapes that run through our head.  The breakfast tape I just mentioned above, the one that says "You have to eat or your body will start storing fat and you won't be able to lose it.";  "Eat small meals all day long to keep your metabolism up."; "You need to eat everything on your plate. There are starving children in Africa. "; "You can't WASTE food.".....and all the other ones that run through and essentially tell me to eat when I'm not hungry. 

I guess this is what they are talking about when you hear "intuitive eating". 

So here were the questions that quickly ran through my head like my life was flashing before my eyes.....

Can I shift my whole mind set and move away from the waste-not-want-not, skipping-meals-is-bad, but-you-have-points-left-and-HAVE-to-eat-all-your-points mindset?

What do I do on the weekends when I want a few glasses of wine and suddenly eating five cookies sounds like a fabulous idea?

What will I do when presented with a buffet on the weekend?

Will I EVER be able to stop tracking points or calories?

Will everyone hold me accountable if I post this?  Hmmm, yes, probably so.

Day 1 of "Mindful Eating" and Massaged Kale Salad with Peanut Dressing:  

I did really well until the evening. I caved. I was hungry when I got home; ate some shrimp and Swiss chard then a dessert of farmer cheese some blueberries and Greek yogurt and then I made this kale salad and kept eating as I was making it because I love anything with nut butter on it.  Even kale.  Or broccoli.

The original recipe was made by my friend Megi at Linden Tea and she used sunflower seed butter. Just looking at this photo you can see why I wanted to try this. I swear it is more drool-worthy than some of the desserts I have seen and who can say that about BROCCOLI?
Source Linden Tea
That had been my original plan but I was out so I tried it with good old peanut butter.  I loved the nut butter and the tang of the apple cider vinegar and the crunch of the nuts.  Next time I might even try a variation with soy sauce and peanut butter. 

Massaged Kale with Peanut DressingAltered from Linden Tea's Broccoli with Sunflower Seed Dressing About 6 (1 cup) servings***3 WW Pts Plus Printable Recipe
1 Bunch Kale2 Tbsp natural peanut butter2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
Splash of water (to thin)
1 garlic clove, grated
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
Handful of peanuts, chopped (about 1/4 cup)


1. Mix the peanut butter, vinegar, water and garlic with a whisk or small blender (such as a Magic Bullet).

2. Season kale with salt and pepper; pour dressing over kale and massage for about 3 minutes until kale begins to break down a bit.

3. Toss handful of chopped peanuts over mixture.

Nutrition Facts
6 (estimated 1-cup) Servings
***3 WW Pts Plus
Amount Per Serving
Calories 104.3
Total Fat 6.3 g
Saturated Fat 1.0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1.9 g
Monounsaturated Fat 2.8 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 81.1 mg
Potassium 377.1 mg
Total Carbohydrate 10.0 g
Dietary Fiber 3.4 g
Sugars 2.2 g
Protein 5.3 g

Vitamin A 354.1 %
Vitamin C 88.8 %
Manganese 35.2 %
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