--KREN   31,901
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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

In my humble opinion Ė
There are two major things you can do to speed yourself along the road to a healthy weight and a healthy body.


Sugar is evil! Yes, it tastes good. It is also addictive. Eating sugar makes you want more sugar. Your body doesnít need it. Do an internet search for "Is sugar bad for you?" and start reading.

I doubt that anyone has ever said to you, ďI THINK YOU NEED MORE SUGAR IN YOUR DIETĒ, lol.

Iím not telling you to search out every gram of sugar in a can of green beans. Iím asking you to avoid SWEETS, DESSERTS. You know what they are. Donít eat them. Also, find a substitute for every sugary drink you slurp into your body. Sodas, ďhealth drinksĒ, coffees laden with syrup and sugar. LIQUID is the FASTEST way to CONSUME THE MOST CALORIES. How long would it take you to eat enough healthy food to equal what you can DRINK that is loaded with sugar? And how fast is it to drink it?

Pop some sugar free gum in your mouth when you want sweets and drink some ice water with it. Make it a new habit.


No matter what diet or way of eating you prefer Ė low carb, high protein, low fat, low calorie Ė doesnít matter. You can always ADD non starchy veggies to it and be more successful.

Iím not saying you canít have some green peas or a potato now and then. Iím saying just focus on ADDING NON-STARCHY VEGGIES to your diet. Really work on it. Be creative with salads. Add fresh veggies to your canned soups, rice dishes, frozen dinners, etc. Put them on a cookie sheet, spray them with olive oil and roast them. Think about it every day. WHAT CAN I ADD TO MY FOOD TODAY that increases my consumption of fresh vegetables?

I doubt anyone has ever said to you, ďI THINK YOUíRE EATING TOO MANY VEGGIESĒ, hmmmm?

We wake up every day a read about something else that has been ďdiscoveredĒ to be bad for us. That doesnít happen to veggies Ė unless they are sprayed with DDT!

Non-starchy veggies are wonder foods. They are good for blood sugar, blood pressure, your liver, your pancreas, every organ in your body, including your largest organ, your skin. EAT MORE of them.

Iíve been eating a large salad for dinner every night. At first I got tired of salads. Then I became more creative. I try every green leaf that is sold in the produce department! I add sweet yellow, red and orange bell peppers, crunchy carrots, cucumbers and tomatoes. Artichoke hearts. Zuchinni. Bok Choy. I use a spoon of vinegar and a spoon of olive oil for dressing. Garlic and onions. I add legumes sometimes, tiny pieces of feta or blu cheese. I try everything and now Iím addicted to this large crunchy salad every day. If Iím eating out at night, I have the salad for lunch.

More than anything else, eating all these vegetables has changed the way my body feels. These plants are making my body happy, lol. I still eat steak and ribs and chicken once or twice a week. But my focus is on the veggies.

The less I consume sugar and processed foods and the more I eat lots of veggies, the better I feel!

Try it! What can you lose?


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FISHINGLADY66 1/18/2012 3:39PM

    Fabulous Blog Karen. I have my LARGE salad for lunch every day. If I feel I need some protein with it, I eat a hard boiled egg. The more leafy greens I have the better. Chick peas, or Garbanzo beans, are really good on salads too. I also like canned beets, drained and rinsed, I'm always thinking of variety in my salads. They say "Variety is the spice of life". Thanks for posting this Healthy Blog. emoticon emoticon
I clicked on I liked this blog.

Comment edited on: 1/18/2012 3:43:06 PM

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HOPE4THIRTY 1/18/2012 12:59PM

  great post!

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ZEEDRA 1/18/2012 12:39PM

    Great reminders. How many times do we have to read and hear this until we "get it"? For me: it's not over...I wish I could have a micro chip implanted in my brain. But, I'm glad that I have this site with people whose opinions I respect to drive it home to me and maybe today will be the day. Well, at 1:37 p.m., I've already succumbed to a "treat" but had a healthy lunch and breakfast. Thanks, Karen! I'm going out to walk now...second time today so far.

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VINGRAM 1/18/2012 11:37AM

    I like to add cole slaw mix to stews and soups - adds almost no calories and ups the veggie count per serving! emoticon

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MORTICIAADDAMS 1/18/2012 10:28AM

    I do the same thing. I gave up drinking anything with caffiene, sugar, or calories years agi with the exception of milk. I eat lots of nonstarchy veggies a day.

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TOOTERFISH 1/18/2012 10:16AM

    Fabulous post.
I follow these philosophies too. You explained this wisdom very well. Really nicely written.

another important one for me is Drink Water. I believe the hydration part is also important in any health program. Only in rare instances would you be told to drink less water.

Three cheers for veggies - Captain Vegetable would be proud :)

**came back to say - I clicked the Like button on your blog (my first time ever doing so) because I believe what you have written here should be shared with everyone - it's like Common Sense

Comment edited on: 1/18/2012 10:24:17 AM

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BELTONWALKER67 1/18/2012 9:18AM

    Great info! I love the veggies and need to try more varieties! I do get most of my sweet stuff from the fruits I enjoy. Like PJ, I can't bring those Lays Chips home or the binging begins! Never tried Kale...will have to pick some up next grocery trip. emoticon

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DGAIL51 1/18/2012 8:53AM

    THANK YOU!!! I really need to work on the adding more veggies. Adding fruit is no problem for me & I do like veggies. I think I don't like to take the time to prepare them when I eat alone. I just need to get over that & just do it. Next grocery shopping trip, I will concentrate on the veggies.

I do get a lot of carrots-- in my breakfast fruit and yogurt smoothie. It really adds to the flavor. I love carrots & celery as crunchy sides when I make chili. I love sweet potatoes, cooked dried beans of any kind, but those are strachy. I have work to do to add more "fresh" veggies.

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--KREN 1/18/2012 8:47AM

    IMHO, the only way to manage chips is NEVER BRING THEM HOME, LOL. I did like kale chips. Extremely light and crunchy. Joe, however, spit them out! Karen

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TUFFYBIRD 1/18/2012 8:45AM

    I'm not overly fond of sweets and I love veggies so that helps - a lot. My downfall is startches and salt ... like PJ, the chip bag is my big temptation.

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PJSTIME 1/18/2012 8:15AM

    I don't have a problem liking veggies I just get in a rut and need to try new ones. I am going to try some kale this week. Breaking them in small pieces with some olive oil an a little salt. They say they are delicious and crunchy like chips. That would solve a huge problem and keep me out of the chip bag.

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GABY1948 1/18/2012 7:47AM

    GREAT advice, Karen, as always...I agree with you so much! But, for me, I want to add things sweetened with artificial sweetener of any kind. I just can't have it...I binge every time! HUGS!

P.S. Already, when I have my one Kashi frozen entree each day, I add one or two servings of veggie like green beans and it not only makes more of the Kashi food I love with their spices, but I get the veggies!

Comment edited on: 1/18/2012 7:49:49 AM

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Facebook and Tweet buttons on SP

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Nothing you write on the internet is private. Any one can copy and paste and spread it around. That doesn't mean we always want to encourage that or make it happen without people really thinking about it.

On your blogs there are now buttons where anyone who reads your blog can share it on Facebook or Tweet it. You'll never know about it.

If you want to remove that option from your blogs, click EDIT MY SPARK PAGE and uncheck the box at the right that says - "Show share bar on my blog posts." Then scroll all the way down to the bottom and click SAVE. The share buttons should be gone.

Then, at the bottom of your blog, you may also see a different SHARE THIS POST WITH OTHERS button. I did. Click on it and you get MANY ways to spread the blog around. There is an OPT OUT there too, which gives you a long message about privacy and you can OPT OUT of that sharing on that same page. (Opt out doesn't seem to stop sharing, though. I tried it.)

You will also find these share buttons on the top of every TEAM PAGE, including a Private Team. I have yet to find a way to remove those. As leader of a private team, I tried EDIT THIS TEAM but there is no opt out box there.

If anyone knows how to REMOVE THE SHARE BUTTONS AT THE TOP OF THE TEAM PAGE, please let me know.


This link is courtesy of Coach Nancy:


There is lots more about these share buttons in the comments when you go to that link.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SILLYHP1953 1/18/2012 2:48PM

    Thank you! I'm getting ready to go do that.

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    I can't imagine why they think I want the world to know I'm fat. LOL. I unchecked mine.

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ZEEDRA 1/15/2012 11:03PM

    Thank you, Karen.

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SOUPY18 1/15/2012 1:33PM

    Thank you! I wonder where the decision to "share" without writers permission is from. What is written on a personal blog should not be public.

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BARCLE 1/15/2012 1:15PM

    Thanks for the info emoticon

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VINGRAM 1/15/2012 1:05PM


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FISHINGLADY66 1/15/2012 12:39PM

    Thanks Karen for this very important message. I will not be blogging for a while, to see what happens with this (TOOL?) idea ... for Sparkpeople.

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DEC2DEC 1/15/2012 11:26AM

    Thank you! I saw those buttons and thought they were a HORRIBLE idea.

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GINNAR 1/15/2012 11:08AM

    I saw this for the first time yesterday and did edit my blog page in regards to sharing. I use FB, but I limit my use and prefer to set everything up for as much privacy as is possible on these sites. Thank you for keeping us informed.

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PJSTIME 1/15/2012 10:48AM

    Thanks again for the info I haven't blogging much and will be extremely cautious now

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MAMABUGAZ 1/15/2012 10:24AM

    Thanks, Karen.

~ Faith

Comment edited on: 1/15/2012 10:25:00 AM

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GABY1948 1/15/2012 10:11AM

    I had seen this yesterday on someone's blog...but thanks for spreading the word, Karen! As good as the internet CAN be, I believe the majority of it is evil in one way or another. I am just EXTREMELY careful what I say anywhere! Thanks, you are a great friend! Gaye

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NANCYRUBIO 1/15/2012 10:06AM

    Need to know and to be remined. emoticon

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NELLJONES 1/15/2012 9:52AM

    Thanks for the info, I have edited my page. However, in this high speed information age, I am careful about everything I write. Or say and do. Anyone with a teenager in the house knows that words spoken even in the sanctity of the home can be shared with many strangers, and without their knowledge.

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LCFELDMANN 1/15/2012 9:42AM

  Thanks for sharing this. I'm new to SparkPeople and haven't started my page and blot yet. This is good info to have.

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SUEO451 1/15/2012 9:28AM

    thank you for the info- have updated my page! emoticon

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Kids are so FUNNY!

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

My cousin is a teacher and has 4 children. They all attend the school where she teaches. The teacher of her son recently told her this story.

Teacher asked the class, "Who can name the seasons of the year?"
My cousin's son was chosen to answer and he proudly stood up and replied:

Dove Season
Quail Season
Deer Season and
Duck Season!

Who's dad is a hunter? lol


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IFATFIRST77 1/9/2012 8:22AM

    lol too cute

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DGAIL51 1/5/2012 7:36PM

    emoticon a little girl I knew said.. Christmas, Easter, 4th of July & Thanksgiving.. totally different perspective but I see why one could think that.

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    LOL. they must live near me.

Comment edited on: 1/5/2012 4:33:57 PM

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PURPLELVR7 1/4/2012 9:16PM


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FISHINGLADY66 1/4/2012 8:51PM

    Yep! I know those seasons. lol Smart kid.

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JUSTJO66 1/4/2012 1:20PM


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KAYYVAUGHN 1/4/2012 12:28PM

    That's a smart kid. His dad is probably proud of his son.

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JEANNE229 1/4/2012 11:19AM

    Guess we know who rules.

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VINGRAM 1/4/2012 11:01AM


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GEMINIAN1 1/4/2012 10:44AM


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TUFFYBIRD 1/4/2012 9:44AM

    emoticon I have a grandson just like that!

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GABY1948 1/4/2012 9:24AM

    I LOVE this...am going to send it to dh! Yourcousin's son is VERY smart! emoticon

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PJSTIME 1/4/2012 9:14AM

    I love it only from a family of hunters.

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Saturday, December 31, 2011

I love funny signs. Some are really hillariously perplexing. Take this one indicating NO BIRDS ALLOWED. Huh? What are they going to do to the birds that show up? lol

The link below leads to 25 signs YOU may come across one day! Good luck!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SILLYHP1953 1/10/2012 10:43AM

    I have never seen a no birds allowed sign, and it didn't seem to bother the birds!

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MORTICIAADDAMS 12/31/2011 11:51PM

    LOL That's hilarious!! I guess he can't read or is deliberately blowing them off. What a crazy fine. I think I will put one like it with a cat on it because the neighbor's cat will not leave my bird feeder alone. LOL.

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DMILLE40 12/31/2011 9:59PM


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JKURJACK1944 12/31/2011 9:25PM

    Happy New Year. Great signs.

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GGMOM06 12/31/2011 2:07PM

    emoticon HAPPY NEW YEAR !

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FISHINGLADY66 12/31/2011 11:47AM

    Thanks for the laugh.

Happy New Year!

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VINGRAM 12/31/2011 10:55AM


Happy new Year! vista emoticon

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PJSTIME 12/31/2011 10:33AM

    Thanks Kren. Have a Happy New Year.

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NELLJONES 12/31/2011 10:22AM

    Love it!

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GABY1948 12/31/2011 9:58AM

    Awesome! Thanks, Karen, and have the MOST AWESOME year yet in 2012! HUGS, Gaye

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ZEEDRA 12/31/2011 9:25AM

    You ain't the boss of me!!!

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MISSPEACHES3 12/31/2011 9:20AM

    Too Cute emoticon

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--KREN 12/31/2011 9:10AM

    Is that bird a REBEL or what? lol

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Monday, December 12, 2011

After lots of reading and researching, (see my previous blogs) Iím drastically reducing the amount of STARCH and SUGAR in my diet.

My first step is cutting out the SWEETS. You know, desserts. Pies, ice cream, fudge, brownies, cake, chocolate candy, etc. etc.

Several people have asked if Iím using an alternative to sugar, an artificial sweetener of some kind, or something like honey, agave, etc.

First of all, I am always trying not to eat anything ARTIFICIAL. I want real food, whole food, the best fresh food, please.

I cut out the sugar in my coffee and tea long ago when I began going to a Chiropractor (Dr. Sid) for back/leg pain. When I came in he would run his fingers down my spine and poke around on my back a little and say, ďYouíve been eating sugar.Ē And I would say, ďNo, I donít eat sweets very much.Ē (Back then that was true. That was before I hired Sara Lee and Betty Crocker to work with me, lol, but thatís another blog I havenít written yet, lol.)

Dr. Sid persisted and insisted until finally it dawned on me: I was putting two or three spoons of sugar in my tea and coffee which I drank all day while at work! Duh! One of those olí slap-the-head-moments, lol. So, I gradually decreased the sugar in my drinks until I finally drank my coffee and tea black, nothing added. My motivation was to get my Chiropractor to stop saying that I was eating sugar. (He said when you eat sugar your pancreas responds, works hard, and he could feel it when he pressed the right spot on my back. Somehow the pancreas or spine felt differently. Was he right? I donít know but when I stopped sugar I never told him, but he stopped saying it .)

So, back to the present. Iím cutting out SWEETS. Anything sweetened with artificial sweetener or any other sweetener besides sugar, still tastes SWEET, so Iím avoiding it. I think itís too tempting, reminds me too much of some other dessert that IS full of sugar and will eventually lead me astray. Besides, Iím never sure whatís in some of those products and have read all sorts of warnings about them.

What I want to know is:

When you give up SWEETS are you just giving up SUGAR?
Or do you give up anything that tastes SWEET?
And what difference do you think it makes?


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MORTICIAADDAMS 12/15/2011 2:12PM

    As a nurse I've been following the studies on artificial sweeteners for years. They are one of the most studied products actually. And the only genuine scientifically proven problem is in people who have phenylketonuia and use aspartame. Artificial sweeteners in some people trick the brain temporarily to think it is consuming sugar and their blood sugar starts to rise until the brain shortly realizes it isn't sugar and it can't use it so the blood sugar effect is nominal. That being said I don't consume a lot of artificial either as I prefer to avoid processed foods as much as possible. A little is not going to harm anyone. Unlike most people I never drank diet sodas every day and my dessert is usually fruit so I don't have a lot of use for it. But for diabetics and people with similar problems it is all they can use and is safe.

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ZEEDRA 12/14/2011 8:10PM

    I've only been able to give up sugar for any good length of time during extreme circumstances.
So, I believe that ANY kind of sugar, including honey and artificial sweeteners, will trigger binges, even small ones.
There's too long a history of sweets feeding the addictive part of my brain. Thankfully, I'm not addicted to anything else but this more than makes up for all the "interesting" addictions.
So, it's either leave it alone or it won't let me alone.
I'm presently giving in to it because it's the time of year when I typically do so. Nothing to do with socializing. It's pre-Christmas, isolated "snacking".
Actually, I can't use the words "healthy snack" as many people do. To me it's an oxymoron.
Good luck, y'all, with the sugar cessation.

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DEC2DEC 12/13/2011 5:47PM

    I don't do sugars, grains, dairy, or fruit -- none of the stuff that contains natural sugars. Once or twice a week I'll have a soda sweetened with stevia, because I've found that it doesn't trigger binges like other real and artificial sweeteners.

Sugars are really, really, really bad for our bodies.

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GABY1948 12/12/2011 5:08PM

    Karen, I'm with you and I learned long ago that artificial sweeteners are WORSE for us than sugar, believe it or not and actually cause binges...your body is tricked and then it does want the real thing! So you are right! I used to drink like 2 two liter bottles of Diet Pepsi a day (yes, I was NUTS) but now only drink water and never junk.

I had been getting more lax and was "allowing" sweets back into life but that has had detrimental results (weight) so now I am like you and quitting all of it!

Thanks for all your great blogs that have helped me SO much! You are emoticon emoticon

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CATHY629 12/12/2011 4:28PM

    I never take sugar in tea or coffee,but i do like chocolate,i find it easier not to have sweet things in the house,if its there i will eat it, so i just dont buy it.
Trouble is it's everywhere,there is always a good selection of sweets and chocolates right at the checkout in the supermarket to tempt you while you are waiting in the queue to be served.
I notice now that here in the uk they are not allowed to advertise sweets and confectionary on the tv in the commercial breaks on childrens television.
During world war two and after up to 1953 sugar was rationed here in the uk as was meat and butter etc,everyone was a lot healthier then,you never saw many overweight people then.

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FISHINGLADY66 12/12/2011 3:40PM

    I'm not a sweet eater, but I do use the pink sweetener in my coffee. For some reason I have never eaten sugar foods. I don't know why, but I am glad I don't. My problem has always been portion control. If it taste good to me, I just keep eating. I am feeding my mouth hunger, not my stomach hunger. I'm still working on that.

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VINGRAM 12/12/2011 2:33PM

    I'm a Splenda gal.........can't do without it!!!!!!!!! Hugs........me

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GEMINIAN1 12/12/2011 2:06PM

    emoticonHi Karen

I am an "everything in moderation" person.
However, I follow the belief system that, everything can be HOMEMADE into a healthy, real food, version.
I guess, people would argue with me (and they'd sort-of have a point) if I'm a "true" *EVERYTHING* in moderation person because there are all kinds of PACKAGED "foods" that I will not support (couldn't pay me to).
However, in my brain, I don't consider a *ton* of that packaged stuff "food"; so, I have an argument too.
It is scientifically proven that the extra injected molecules and some processing procedures, in some packaged foods, make the *human body* not recognize them as food.

Too bad people's taste buds don't know that, huh?
Even poison berries taste good; but, then you die.

*Any* "craving" I have gets fulfilled ... in my kitchen ... not at McDonald's and Dairy Queen.

I do -not- eat WHITE, I repeat WHITE, sugar.
Or, as I have said, for DECADES, "I don't eat Bleach."
My husband and I eat 100% USDA Certified -Organic- Sugar, Honey, Chocolate, anything from Nature, grown in Nature; yes, yes we do.

In my opinion, what difference do I think it makes?
For me it means, this is something I CAN DO for the rest of my life.
"Everything In Moderation" ...
-I- couldn't do it any other way my friend.

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WOUBBIE 12/12/2011 1:46PM

    When I started low carb I assumed that I just wouldn't be eating anything sweet anymore. Which was fine, because when you don't eat sugar you can taste the natural sweetness of a lot of the other foods.

But a lot of people posted recipes for "substitute" foods - not just stuff with Splenda and Stevia, but things like MIM's and cauliflower pizza crust (still haven't tried that one).

I'm finding that, even if it tastes good it makes me too nostalgic for the "real" thing, so I'm going to avoid doing that in the future. I did try one pumpkin dessert recipe that I really like that has a ton of eggs in it, so I can grab it as a quick breakfast on rushed mornings, but I'm going to lay low on the other things.

If I were a vegetarian I would refuse to eat tofurkey too. :)

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PJSTIME 12/12/2011 1:41PM

    I try an give up the hard core sweets. But I still use those pink packets in my tea and honey in my oatmeal. I rarely drink any soda.

If I stray in eating sweets it just makes me want more. Can you spell ADDICTION. I think this is a problem with any one with a weight problem.

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