• Affiliate Disclosure We participate in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. Therefore, some of these recommendations will result in this page earning a small commission. This will not affect the price that you pay at all. If you support what we do and appreciate the free information that we provide then please consider purchasing through our links. It is very much appreciated!

Chunky Apple Oatmeal Muffins – Ideal Protein Phase 1, Low Carb

Chunky Apple Oatmeal Muffins – Ideal Protein Phase 1 Compliant

I’ve been experimenting a lot with making recipes out of the Ideal Protein packets and so far these Chunky Apple Oatmeal Muffins are my favorite!  They are super moist and apple-y delicious! They are made with the Apple Oatmeal packets.  If you are following an Ideal Protein alternative plan, then just use the Proti Diet apple cinnamon oatmeal packets available.  They will work great with this recipe!

What makes these muffins so awesome is a secret ingredient that tastes like baked apples!  And that secret ingredient is chayote squash!  Also called chayote fruit in some places.  Do you see where this is going? Cut into chunks and baked with cinnamon, those chayote pieces taste just like baked apple!  The bonus is this: if you are following the Ideal Protein Diet plan, you count them as a vegetable.  Oh bliss!

chunky apple oatmeal muffinsHere is a picture of them so you know what to look for in the store.

They are larger than an apple, kind of oblong with a ‘bum’ at the end.  The ones available in the stores around here have a smooth surface and a light green color. The skin is very thin and can be peeled with a vegetable peeler.

They are very crisp, and take on the flavor of what you are making. If you are missing fruit, then these might be a great find for you!

easy chayote squash recipeIngredients for Chunky Apple Oatmeal Muffins (makes 2 servings)

  • 2 Ideal Protein Apple Oatmeal Packets (or use Proti Diet Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 packet Stevia or whatever sweetener you are using
  • 1/3 cup egg whites (or 2 egg whites)
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • 3-4 tbsp water
  • 1 cup chayote squash chunks (about the size of raisins)

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, microwave chayote with 1 tbsp water for about 2 minutes
  2. In another small bowl stir together all the dry ingredients.
  3. Add liquid ingredients
  4. Fold in the cooked chayote squash.
  5. Divide the mixture into either a 6 cup silicon muffin pan or whoopie pan.  I used a whoopie pan in this picture because I they make muffin tops, which I like!
  6. Sprinkle the tops with a little extra cinnamon.
  7. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes if using the whoopie pan, or 12 minutes if using a muffin pan.

Three of these muffins count as 1 unrestricted Ideal Protein Packet for Phase 1.  In addition, count 1 teaspoon oil and 1/2 cup Select vegetables.

I really hope you love these!


Triple Chocolate Muffin Cakes – Ideal Protein Phase 1 Compliant

Triple Chocolate Muffin Cakes

Triple Chocolate Muffin Cakes – Ideal Protein Phase 1 Compliant

Is it a muffin?  Or is it cake?  You will have to try these triple chocolate muffin cakes and decide! They turned out moist and delicious and very satisfying to my chocolate sweet tooth!

The recipe uses 2 different Ideal Protein packets, Chocolate Chip pancake mix and Dark Chocolate Pudding Mix.  If you are following the plan using alternative Ideal Protein products, then you can make this recipe using the regular ProtiDiet pancake mix and their chocolate pudding mix.  It will be a double chocolate muffin cake, but still!  Plenty of chocolate flavor to go around!

Ingredients List for Triple Chocolate Muffin Cakes

Walden Farms Calorie-Free Dip-Chocolate 12 OzWalden Farms Calorie-Free Dip-Chocolate 12 Oz

    • 1 packet Ideal Protein Chocolate Chip Pancake mix
    • 1 packet Ideal Protein Dark Chocolate Pudding mix
    • 1 tsp baking powder
    • 1/3 cup egg whites (or 2 egg whites)
    • 2 tsp oil
    • 2-3 tbsp water (or enough to make a batter)
    • 2-3 tbsp Walden Farms Chocolate syrup or dip

Assembling Triple Chocolate Muffin Cakes

  1. Combine all ingredients except for the Walden Farms chocolate syrup into a small bowl.
  2. Divide the mixture evenly into a 6 piece muffin pan. (Use silicon pans, they work amazing!)
  3. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes
  4. Done when a toothpick inserted into middle of muffin comes out clean.
  5. Remove muffins from pan and allow to cool completely.
  6. Once they are completely cold, use a sharp knife to slice each muffin in half.
  7. Spread Walden Farms dip or syrup in the middle layer and put the top back on the muffin.  You can also spread some on top.

This recipe makes 6 triple chocolate muffin cakes and 3 of them are one unrestricted Ideal Protein serving for Phase 1 plan.

 Check out my other Ideal Protein recipes and articles here.

This recipe also works well if you want to swap out the Ideal Protein packets and use Ideal Protein Alternative Plan packets.  Although I am a great believer in the program (22 pounds lost so far at the time of writing this), I know it is expensive and there is a large Facebook group of people who are doing the IP plan using alternative packets.


Ideal Protein Diet Week 3 and 13 pounds gone!

Ideal Protien Diet Week 3Ideal Protein Diet Week 3 and 13 pounds gone!

Well, I have been doing the Ideal Protein diet and just finished week 3 and the result is 13 pounds lost!  This is just beyond my expectations so far and has been relatively easy.  I am enjoying the food (well, mostly!) and because I like to cook and experiment that has made it easier to follow.  There’s a lot to work with here!

I love that there are so many foods to choose from.  I was on a mushroom soup kick for a few days.  The Ideal Protein mushroom soup packet tastes amazing if you add a cup of chopped mushrooms and asparagus to it.  I also add 2 ounces of chicken, it’s one of my favorite lunches!

Here are some pictures of new foods/recipes that I’ve tried this past week.

ideal protein diet

This week I discovered the joys of Jicama!  This is my new favorite vegetable.

Pictured are fries that I made by tossing the jicama in 1 teaspoon olive oil, salt and pepper and then baking on parchment paper in the oven until they brown on the edges.  They were really good, but don’t taste like fries.

I like jicama even better raw, they are crunchy and sweet.  Jicama counts as a select vegetable.

If you are doing the Ideal Protein diet and crave something sweet and crunchy like an apple, this is pretty darn close!

 

Some Other  Things I Tried on Ideal Protein Diet Week 3

Taco SaladTaco SaladChocolate Pudding HeartsChocolate Pudding HeartsCelery Root FryCelery Root Fry

Check out my first two Ideal Protein compliant recipes!

Apple Danish Recipe (made with Apple Oatmeal packet)

Egg Roll in a Bowl Recipe  (which also make amazing lettuce wraps I found out yesterday!)

I’ll try to post my results here every couple of weeks with hopefully a new recipe too!

 


Ideal Protein Egg Roll in a Bowl Recipe

egg roll in a bowl recipeEgg Roll in a Bowl Recipe Ideal Protein Compliant

This healthy Egg Roll in a Bowl recipe is one of my favorite Ideal Protein dinner recipes!  It is super fast and easy and the taste is very authentic.  Chinese food cravings be gone!

I got the idea from a fellow blogger Jessica and her brilliant recipe for Egg Roll in a Bowl right here.  I have tweaked it to fit the Ideal Protein diet plan.  Her site is a treasure trove of clean eating ideas so I hope you give her Clean Eating blog a visit!

Zero Carb Zero Sugar Natural Rice Vinegar is Key to Egg Roll in a Bowl Recipe taste!

Nakano Natural Rice Vinegar, 12 OunceNakano Natural Rice Vinegar, 12 Ounce

There are just a couple of key tips I want to share about prepping this ‘Egg Roll in a Bowl’ dish so that it tastes the most authentic, while still following the Ideal protein plan.

Rice vinegar is key but most of them are seasoned and loaded with sugar. You must look for an all natural rice vinegar that has zero carbs, zero sugar to be Ideal protein compliant.

Be sure to read the label!

The second tip is to use ground chicken if you can get it.  It still works well with ground turkey, but the ground chicken just gives an edge (as voted by my teenagers).  Also I use 4 ounces usually, but you can use up to 8 ounces if you have not used any of your protein for the day.

Shan - Ginger Garlic Paste - 700g, Premium QualityShan – Ginger Garlic Paste – 700g, Premium Quality

The only other thing that makes this even better is ginger paste.

Here again, you want to find one like that that has no added sugar and zero carbs.

Yes, you could also grate some fresh ginger. I love fresh ginger, but I’m a working mom and so products like that make a huge difference for me!

&

Egg Roll in a Bowl Recipe Ideal Protein Style!

&

Ingredients

  • 4-8 ounces ground chicken(or ground turkey, see notes above)Egg Roll in a Bowl Recipe
  • 1 or 2 teaspoons oil
  • 2 green onions, diced
  • ½ c bean sprouts
  • ½ c. bok choy, diced
  • 1 c. Sui Choy, diced
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp rice vinegar, must be the Natural kind with zero carbs and sugar
  • 1 tsp ginger paste

Instructions:

  1. Saute ground chicken in non stick pan until cooked. Drain off fat and set aside chicken, but leave all the bits in the pan.
  2. Heat oil in the same pan
  3. Stir fry the onions, choy and beansprouts until softened.
  4. Add the chicken and stir fry another minute
  5. Add the soy sauce, rice vinegar, ginger garlic paste.
  6. Stir fry another 30 seconds.

Enjoy!


Ideal Protein Apple Danish Recipe

Ideal Protein Apple Danish recipeThis Ideal Protein recipe for Apple Danish uses the Apple Oatmeal packet. This is one of my favorite Ideal Protein breakfast recipes!  I usually make 6 danishes and save 3 for another day.  If you are following the Ideal Protein Alternative plan you can use the Proti Diet Apple cinnamon packet instead.

Ideal Protein Apple Danish RecipeWalden Farms Calorie Free Fruit Spread Apple Butter — 12 Oz

The Key Ingredient for Ideal Protein Apple Danish Recipe

The key ingredient to this Apple Danish recipe is Walden Farms Apple Butter. Although the Ideal Protein oatmeal packets can be used to make tasty muffins, what makes this more of a danish is the sweet center filling.

You could also use one of the Walden Farms sugar free jams.

Each Apple Danish gets 1 teaspoon of the Apple Butter in the center. The Apple Butter is quite sweet, so it is more than enough!

 

ideal protein apple oatmeal muffinsIngredient List for Ideal Protein Apple Danish Recipe (2 meals)

  • 2 packets Ideal Protein apple oatmeal
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 packet Stevia (or whatever sweetener is allowed by your coach)
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ -1 cup grated zucchini 
  • 2 tbsp Walden Farms Apple Butter

Note: Peeling the zucchini first like I did here gives this more of an authentic Danish look (less green bits)

Chicago Metallic Non-Stick Original Muffin Top PanChicago Metallic Non-Stick Original Muffin Top Pan

Instructions

  1. Beat eggs in a glass bowl or measuring cup
  2. Add the rest of ingredients except Apple Butter and use a spatula to combine until mixed
  3. Divide evenly among a 6 count whoopie pan, flatten the batter. (The exact pan that I use is pictured right)
  4. Using a spoon, make a small well or indentation in the middle of each one.
  5. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.
  6. Before eating, fill each depression with 1 teaspoon apple butter. Enjoy!

 


Ideal Protein Apple Danish Recipe

My Favorite Ideal Protein Breakfast Recipe!

Ideal Protein – Follow Along with Me on Week One!

Ideal Protein

Ideal Protein – What is It?

Recently I noticed that a colleague at work was disappearing before my very eyes.

I had noticed that he was eating vegetables at lunch, which was weird in and of itself because he was a confirmed veggie hater.  Or so I thought.

He told me that he had lost 40 pounds on the Ideal Protein plan.

So what is the Ideal Protein plan?  I had to know!

Ideal Protein is moderately low carb, low fat and moderate protein. It is a system of packets and bars along with your own chosen food.

You have 3 packets a day (2 meals and 1 snack) which you can embellish with vegetables and protein. Dinner is 8 ounces of protein along with 2 cups of vegetables. You can also have unlimited salad veggies like lettuce and cucumber.

At first I was afraid of the committment to coaching and buying the foods so I followed the Ideal Protein Alternative plan on my own.  I used the ProtiDiet Packets (see bottom of this page) and I did lose a few pounds but I also lost my way several times and cheated.

All the while I watched my coworker’s  weight disappear some more and so decided to jump in.  All in!

I will chronicle my week to week journey here, starting with Week 1 below!

Week 1 Day 1 of Ideal Protein

Day 1 began with me visiting an Ideal Protein coach.  In that visit I filled out a medical and health form and I was weighed and measured. The first meeting took about an hour to go through everything.  I left with a large grocery bag filled with the food and supplements need for my first week.  I also had a DVD to watch and a file folder of a lot of information to read as well as a journal to be filled in every single day.

Daily Ideal Protein Meal Plan

This is the basic plan outline:

Breakfast: 1 Ideal Protein Food (they call them packets), 1 MultiVitamin, 1 Potassium

Lunch: 1 Ideal Protein Food, 2 cups of ‘Select Vegetables’, Optional Unlimited raw veggies(think high water, low carb and green)

Dinner: 8 ounces Protein, 2 cups Select Vegetables, Optional unlimited raw veggies, 2 Cal-Mag, 1 Multi-vitamin, 2 Omega 3

Evening: 1 Ideal Protein Food, 2 Cal-Mag

During the day, you use 2 teaspoons olive oil, 64 ounces water and 1/4 teaspoon Ideal Salt. (same as Lo Salt). The salt helps to minimize Keto Flu symptoms which many experience eating low carb.

Notes:  You can split up your protein.  I am more than satisfied with 4 ounces at dinner so I eat an egg with my breakfast (2 oz) and 2 ounces protein with my lunch.

What happened in my first week of Ideal Protein?

  • I got an email every day with a 3 minute video to watch to learn more and stay motivated
  • The email also included a new recipe to try
  • I got 2 phone calls from my coach to see how I was making out.  She also gave me her cell number and twice I texted her to ask a question, which she answered promptly.
  • I lost 9 pounds!

Did you read that!?  Nine Pounds!

Ok, so this was just a basic overview of Ideal Protein and I will be sharing more as I go along.  I am almost at the end of week 2 and I have already come up with several of my own recipes and ways to pump up those packets!  These are all coming as fast as I can write them for you! So be sure to stay tuned!

I Can’t Afford Ideal Protein

Ideal Protein is spendy and I am so grateful that I can afford it.  I figure it will cost me about $120 (Canadian dollars) a week for the IP foods and then whatever other foods and supplements I will need along the way.  I need to weigh out the fact that I won’t be spending money on my morning Starbucks run, restaurants, alcohol, etc.

But I get that it still might be too much and there are Protein Foods out there that you can substitute for the packets and follow this program exactly for about half the cost.  While I highly recommend getting the coaching, I get it and everyone should be able to do this.  ProtiDiet makes awesome food packets that can be used instead, see what I found below and be sure to read more about Ideal Protein Alternative Plan in my next article.

Ideal Protein Alternative Food Packets


Best Eggplant Lasagna Recipe – Low Carb and Gluten Free!

Best Eggplant Lasagna Recipe – Low Carb and Gluten Free!

eggplant lasagna recipeAn eggplant lasagana recipe without noodles ?  Of course!  The eggplant slices in my family’s Best Eggplant  Lasagna Recipe are much better than noodles. That makes this healthy eggplant lasagna recipe also Gluten Free.

I have been making this healthy Eggplant Lasagna recipe for many years, even for company.  Without noodles, I knew it would be low in carbs, but now that I am doing a low carb food plan as a committed lifestyle, I thought I would enter my recipe into MyFitnessPal to see what the actual results are. They are at the bottom of the recipe below.

Also people are always asking me for this recipe, so now I have it written down.  One of my teenagers is a vegetarian and even they love this Eggplant Lasagna recipe.  That makes it a winner in my books!  This version has no meat, and so this is also a great meal for Meatless Mondays.

I have made this with both the regular big purple eggplants that you see in the stores, as low carb eggplant lasagna well as the long and narrow Japanese eggplants.  They  both work fine for this recipe and are equally tasty.

Cooking Tip:  For the large purple eggplants, I usually slice them thin, sprinkle with salt and then soak them in a bowl of ice cold water while I assemble all the other ingredients.  My mother always did this and she said it drew out any bitter flavor in the eggplant.  I wonder if she used a different type of eggplant because honestly, I have done it without and I can’t taste the difference in the recipe.  But I am letting you know about this in case the eggplants in your area have a bitter taste.

low carb lasagna recipeSauce Lc Tomato Basil 26 oz (Pack of 6)

Ingredients for my Best Eggplant Lasagna Recipe (Six large servings)

  • 1 large eggplant, sliced very thin
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup sharp cheese, grated
  • 1 ½ cup Low Carb pasta sauce
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese, grated

&

How to Layer the Eggplant Lasagna Recipe

Premium Mandoline Slicer - Vegetable Slicer & Cheese Slicer - Stainless Steel BladesPremium Mandoline Slicer – Vegetable Slicer & Cheese Slicer – Stainless Steel Blades

  • Slice the eggplant as thin as you can in rounds. If you own one of these these fancy dancy mandoline slicers, then this would be an excellent way to get nice uniform slices.
  • If you want, follow my tip above the recipe about salting the eggplant.
  • In a bowl, beat the 2 eggs. Add the sour cream and the 1 cup of sharp grated cheese. Whisk until it looks like a creamy sauce. This is the filling.
  • In a large glass or silicon casserole dish, cover the bottom of the dish by spreading ½ cup of the tomato sauce. Put ½ of the eggplant slices on top of the sauce, overlapping the slices to make the first layer.
  • Spread the sour cream mixture over this first layer of eggplant slices. If I wasn’t making a vegetarian version for my son, this is where I would add a layer of hamburger crumbles.
  • Overlap the rest of the eggplant slices on top of the filling. Spread the remaining 1 cup tomato sauce on top of this.
  • Finally, sprinkle the mozzarella cheese on top.
  • Bake for about 45 minutes at about 350F or until cheese is brown and bubbling.

And best of all for my healthy eggplant lasagna recipe there are only 300 calories and 7 net carbs.  Hope you enjoy it!

low carb eggplant lasagna recipe

Cheesy, low carb, gluten free Eggplant Lasagna

best eggplant lasagna recipe

 

 

Plexus Slim Pink Drink – What You Want to Know!

Why I Decided to Try Plexus Sliplexus slim pink drinkm

Plexus Ambassador Sara Neal talks about why she tried Plexus Slim Pink Drink

I am a 34 year old, married mother to two little boys and hope to have more babies in the future.  My body was starting to tell me otherwise with closer menstrual cycles, low energy, mood, terribly achy feet, loss of hair, and weight that just wouldn’t budge. 

I have two toddlers to run after which accounts for my energy levels, but the loss of time between menstrual cycles, loss of hair, and terribly achy feet pointed me to do lots of research.

After going through two Whole 30’s and eating Paleo for some time, I knew it had to be a bigger issue when my cycle wouldn’t regulate, my feet still ached, and the weight just wasn’t coming off.  What I came away with was inflammation and hormone imbalance.  I am a lover of whole foods, non GMO and organic whenever possible.  I do not drink soda, or a ton of caffeine, and eat a pretty balanced diet.  Plexus has the products that I, and so many others, have been waiting for.  They are filling the gaps.

What can Plexus Do For You?

Plexus is not a quick-fix. It will not make you drop weight overnight or pump you full of caffeine to give you a huge surge of energy and no appetite. What Plexus is is a company that promotes a healthy gut. The pleasant side effect is that you tend to lose weight after getting your gut healthy.

Gut health is everywhere in the news, and for good reason! They call the gut your “second brain” and most autoimmune disorders, allergies, skin conditions, and behavioral issues stem from too much bad bacteria in the gut and inflammation throughout the body. Research is coming out every day that points us back to the gut.

Plexus Slim Pink Drink

Originally created for diabetics, Slim, aka “the pink drink” stabilizes blood sugars, can regulate cholesterol, and plexus slim pink drinkbalance your blood pressure. It is all natural and has no artificial ingredients. Sweetened with stevia and Lo Han, I think it tastes like a fruit punch or cherry flavored beverage. It is colored by beet root extract and comes in a pouch to be mixed into 8oz of water and drank first thing in the morning, 30 minutes before breakfast. It stabilizes my blood sugar throughout the day, and I find that I do not have the 4pm tired and snacky feeling anymore.

Plexus Slim – BioCleanse

BioCleanse oxygenates the whole body, helps to cleanse the gastro-intestinal tract, energizes the body, supports collagen production, neutralizes acidic conditions, and helps to relieve constipation. Most people are deficient in magnesium, vitamin C, and bioflavonoids, and BioCleanse can aid in nutritional balance. As of October 29, 2015, BioCleanse will no longer use grapefruit in their BioCleanse but instead orange peel to better serve those who cannot have grapefruit due to certain medications. I find that BioCleanse keeps my intestinal tract moving and really works in harmony to help me sleep better due to the magnesium.

Plexus Slim – ProBio5

ProBio5 is Plexus’ probiotic with enzymes. This is, hands-down, the best probiotic I have ever taken. Plexus’ ProBio5 contains 5 beneficial strands of good bacteria, enzymes, intestinal flora, B6, and grape seed extract. ProBio5 contains Chitosanase and can actually break-through the wall (chitin) of candida to destroy it. Most people have candida overgrowth and don’t even know it. Do you suffer from bloating, gas, diarrhea, constipation, food reactions and allergies, environmental allergies, anxiety, reoccurring irritability, heartburn, indigestion, lethargy, acne, dry/flaky/itchy skin, nail fungus, jock itch, migraine headaches, reoccurring cystitis/vaginal infections, premenstrual tension, and menstrual problems? Do you see how this list goes on and on?

Plexus Slim – X Factor

To amplify your absorption of whole foods and any supplement you take, I have found the X Factor by Plexus to be stellar. They have a patented aloe blend to aid in absorption by 300-400% when taking their vitamin. I sure can tell a difference when taking it. My hair grows like crazy, as do my nails, my skin is fresh looking, and my energy is even higher. The X Factor vitamin also contains New Zealand Blackcurrant which is shown to contain a powerful amount of antioxidants and vitamins in and of itself.

Plexus Slim – Mega X

Finally I want to share with you the Mega X. Mega X combines the benefits of Omega 3, 6, 9, 5 and 7 all in one sustainable ALA, SDA-rich, heart and brain health softgel. This is plant-based coming from the AHIFLOWER oil. You will get the full benefits of all 3, 6, 9, 5 and 7 and no gross fish burps.

Plexus Slim Side Effects

When you take control over your own body some crazy things happen.  When taking Plexus Slim products you might plexus slim side effectshave some candida die-off, or go through a detox process.  These are normal and what some may call a “side-effect.”  You will probably have these Plexus Slim side effects when aggressively treating candida overgrowth.  It’s perfectly normal.  After awhile you will notice that inches are disappearing, and the number on the scale is coming down, you will see cheek bones and collar bones, and clothes will become looser.  For some it happens right away, for others it takes longer.  You might even notice other things first like, pain is no longer an issue, sleep comes easier to you, more energy during the day, cravings subside, clearer skin, stable mood and blood sugars, and so many more.  Plexus is working on your insides to then be able to show you results on the outside. 

The beauty of the Plexus products is that they are totally customizable.  Working with your Ambassador will guide you through these stages.  Everyone takes different Plexus products, at different times of the day, and at varying amounts.    I encourage all of my customers to write down goals, take pictures for body comparison of before and after, take measurements, and to frequently look at your goals, pictures, and measurements to see how far they’ve come.

I am now on the path to health.  My feet don’t ache like they used to, I am seeing a change in the scale and tape measurer, my energy is up, my cycle has regulated, and my hair is growing back.  I feel fantastic, and I want you to also!

plexus slim pink drinkAs an Ambassador for Plexus Worldwide,  I would love to be on your journey with you.  At the bottom of this article is my website and on my website is my phone number. My desire is to be an encouragement to you and walk you through this.  It’s not a quick fix, but it’s worth the journey to better health. I want you to experience what I have experienced.  We can talk through what is going on and customize a plan just for you.

Plexus offers a 60 day, money-back guarantee to their retail and preferred customers.  This is a company that 100% stands behind their products.  You honestly have nothing to lose, except maybe some inflammation, pain, inches, weight…  You get the idea.

Will you join me?

Sara Neal
Plexus Ambassador #488375
Buy Plexus Products Here
425.879.7413

plexus diet products

Get Fit at Home with the VIPR Fitness Training!

Vipr Fitness EquipmentVIPR Fitness Equipment for Working Out at Home

Recently I was introduced to a fairly new piece of fitness equipment called the ViPR. (pronounced Viper). When I first laid eyes on it I had no idea that this Vipr fitness tube  was such a cool and versatile piece of equipment!

I was privileged to be able to try it for the first time at The Body Exchange, a bootcamp program that is exclusive to plus size women. One of the cool things about this place (currently they only have locations in BC) is how cutting edge they are with their workouts. Once you try a VIPR, you will be asking your own gym to get a few!

What is VIPR fitness training? Honestly,  the vipr fitness tube looks like a large rubber tube. And it is, but therein lies the simplicity! This ‘large rubber tube’ can help you perform an almost unlimited number of movements and exercises that simulate real life situations.

So, in reality, it is more than just an exercise tube. The vipr fitness tubes are weighted and come in several weights, lengths and diameters. They have hand grips in several locations on the tube.

Since a picture (or a video!) is worth a thousand words, watch this to get an idea. Honestly, it’s hard to describe just how versatile and fun the VIPR is!

Benefits of  VIPR Fitness Training

In my opinion the VIPR fitness tube is safer and easier to use than free weights. As you saw in the video, it enables you to simulate many everyday types of movement such as pulling, lifting, dragging, reaching and twisting. Because of the weight distribution of the VIPR, those movements are smoother (and thus safer) than when done with free weights.

Plus it makes you feel like a gladiator!Vipr Fitness Tube

The biggest problem with the VIPR is that it’s hard to find. Only the specialized gyms or higher end gyms have these things due to their priciness. Finally, finally they are now available on Amazon but for now I can only add this Vipr Exercise tube to my wish list.

I also would love to see a home DVD with a Vipr training workout, I’m sure that will come at some point.  In the meantime there is an app called  Virtual Trainer ViPR available if you are lucky enough to own this amazing piece of equipment.

Have you seen or tried out a VIPR fitness tube? If not, what is your favorite piece of equipment?

Meet the Hula Hoop Girl and Owner of Ruby Hooping

I recently met Ruby Linz, a fellow blogger who is obsessed with hula hooping! So I have started calling her Hula Hoop Girl, but even luckier for you, I convinced her to write about it here for you guys!! 🙂 But honestly, wait until you read how she practices fitness as a plus size woman, and how much weight she has lost with hula hooping!

Also, her love of hooping has turned into a business!  She now makes customs hoops which you can special order from RubyHooping!

hula hoop girlRuby Linz – Hula Hoop Girl!

The best part about hula hooping is that it’s so much fun, it doesn’t even feel like exercise. The calories burned are just icing on the cake! Mmmm, cake.

Alright so, I’m a plus size woman and I’m a hula hooper. I love talking about the many health benefits of hula hooping, but I’m especially happy about this opportunity to talk specifically about plus size women and hula hooping. I hope that telling my story will inspire other plus size women to learn how to hula hoop.

Before I started hula hooping, I had my eye on it for a while. I knew a few girls in my greater circle of acquaintances that were hula hoop girls, and I always thought that the many dance moves you can perform with a hula hoop were fascinatingly beautiful. But I couldn’t even get the hoop to go around my waist more than once before it crashed to the ground. I figured hula hooping was not something that plus size women like me could do successfully.

My mindset on that started to change at the beginning of this year, when I joined a gym and started working out five days a week. It only took a few weeks of that for the endorphins to start kicking in, and I could already feel my body responding well to the exercise. I felt fitter, lighter, more energized, and above all, more confident. I suddenly became aware for the first time in my life that I could indeed be a fit woman while still being plus size, and that my weight did not have to be the barrier that I was allowing it to be in my life. I was no longer going to be able to convince myself that only skinny girls can hula hoop.

So, that little flicker in the back of my mind of becoming a hula hoop girl started to slowly grow. Then one day, I was browsing through a department store on my lunch hour and happened to walk past a glittering display of hula hoops in a rainbow of colors. I grabbed one in a courageous impulse and gleefully raced back to my office to try the hoop out. I was disappointed to find that, as I’d suspected, I couldn’t keep the hoop going for more than a couple of rotations. But that wasn’t enough to stop me anymore. I now had the confidence to truly know that I could teach my body how to hula hoop and become the lovely hula hoop girl I dreamed of being.

So to make a long story short, I went home and got on Google and started reading everything I could get my hands on about hula hoops. I read about how to hula hoop, how ruby hoopingto make a hula hoop, and how to do hula hoop tricks. I learned all about the fitness aspects of hula hooping. I watched a few instructional videos on how to hula hoop, and before long, I was doing it! Within just a few days, I was able to keep the hoop going indefinitely and felt ready to start thinking about learning some basic hula hoop tricks.

I know that if I can learn how to hula hoop, anyone can. I could never do it as a child, so I learned for the first time at age 30!

Health Benefits of Hula Hooping

I was, of course, pleased to also find that hula hooping helps you lose weight and tones your midsection like nobody’s business. I have never been happy with the way my middle looks or feels, but ever since I started hula hooping, I notice more and more each day that I am enjoying how my hips and stomach feel strong and tight when I walk, and I actually like my reflection in the mirror.

Also, I have received so many wonderful compliments about how small my waist is since I’ve been hula hooping. Truth be told, hula hooping helped me lose about 90 pounds so far. Even though I am still a curvy, thick woman, my body looks and feels so much more fit than it ever has, largely thanks to hula hooping.

hula hooping for weight lossHonestly, hula hooping is the only form of exercise aside from yoga that has ever ignited this kind of passion within me. I don’t think of my hooping sessions as workouts. I genuinely look forward to them because they are a pleasurable part of my day. I never have to force myself to hula hoop, as I sometimes have to force myself to go to the gym. And because there are so many things you can learn to do with your hoop, it can take many years to become a true hooping master.

Just spend a few minutes on Youtube watching hooping videos, and you’ll quickly realize how hula hooping can keep your interest for a very long time. There will always be a new trick to learn, a new goal to achieve with your hoop. That keeps me motivated each and every day. And there’s just nothing else in the world that makes me feel the way I do when I am dancing with my hoop. Pick a song I love, design a routine to it, and then it’s just me and my hoop, celebrating the swing of my hips and the elegance of my curves.

There are so many other benefits I’ve enjoyed since learning how to hula hoop. I personally enjoy the meditative quality of hooping. There is something very calming and relaxing about the rhythm of the hoop rotating around you. When you are hula hooping, you’re not thinking about how you’re going to pay your bills or what to make for dinner. All your mind concerns itself with is the rhythm of the hoop. You are in a highly enjoyable, meditative flow state. These days, many doctors and other health professionals recommend meditation on a regular basis for reduced stress and anxiety. Clearing your mind and allowing it to rest regularly makes it easier to handle all the stuff life throws at you each and every day. So when you hoop, you’re not only getting your body in shape, but you’re improving your mental health, as well!

I truly hope this blog post has inspired many of you fitness-conscious plus size women out there like me to give hula hooping a try. Don’t do like I did for so long and dismiss it as an exercise not suitable for your body type. The truth is, hula hooping is perfect for plus size fitness, and it will inspire you in ways you never dreamed of before.

Thanks so much for reading! – Ruby Linz

Interested in Ruby’s Custom made for you hoops? Check out her Hoop Shop!  Add Hula Hooping to your fitness routine and do it in style!

Ruby's Custom Hoops

Ruby’s Custom Hoops

 

Low Carb Chocolate Fudge for Valentines

Low Carb Chocolate Fudge for Valentines!

Low Carb Chocolate FudgeValentines Day is one of those times when candy and in particular chocolate, reigns supreme!  As followers of Keto and/or low carb, we have it pretty easy because we can use natural fats like butter and coconut oil.  As far as making yummy desserts, to me it is much easier to make a low carb chocolate than a low fat chocolate.  Both can be done, but the low carb tastes better to me!

Wilton 6-Cavity Silicone Heart Mold PanWilton 6-Cavity Silicone Heart Mold Pan

I made them in a full size silicone heart shaped muffin pan and then cut them up after. I am going to find some mini heart silicone pans, that would be way cute!

I only use Silicone pans for a project like this because you can so easily pop out the fudge. These are the greatest invention ever!

I only ever use the Wilton pans, they are my favorite. They are only about a dollar or two more than the no name brands but boy, they sure last a heck of a lot longer!

This fudge works out to 2 grams of carbs per serving (as made here).

&

A note about the sweetness level.  With the recipe as given below, it ends up tasting somewhere between bittersweet and semi-sweet, which is what I prefer.  If you like your chocolate fudge to be sweet, either start with semi-sweet chocolate or use more sweetener than I did.

Also, if you are counting carbs, then be aware that the powdered sweeteners like Splenda do have a higher carb count than the liquids like Sweet n Low.  I use the zero carb SweetLeaf Stevia myself, its just my preference.  If you don’t care at all about carb counts, and are just looking for a diabetic friendly fudge, then try the diabetic friendly Agave syrup or go ahead and use Splenda or Truvia Baking Blend .  I don’t use a lot of sweeteners as a general rule, but it is nice to have a treat like this once in awhile.

Low Carb Chocolate Fudge Recipe

I made it with walnuts because I like chocolate walnut anything!

  • ½ c butter
  • ½ c coconut oil
  • 6 pieces of Hersheys Unsweetened chocolate
  • ½ c heavy cream
  • Sweetener of choice to equal ½ cup.(be sure to read above re the sweetness level)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ c chopped walnuts (optional)

Directions

  1. In a heavy pot on very low heat (or a double boiler) melt butter, coconut oil and chocolate.  Once melted add cream, sweetener and vanilla.  If using walnuts, stir them in.
  2. Spoon mixture into 12 heart shaped silicone muffin cups.
  3. Each heart will be 250 calories and only 2 carbs if you use either liquid Sweet N Low or the zero carb Stevia.

And well, it is Valentine’s Day and what could be tastier than some guilt free chocolate fudge!  Enjoy it!

No time to bake?!  You can still be sugar free!

Marz Sprays Review – Is it a Scam?

Marz Sprays Review

It seems that a product called Marz Spray  is the latest weight loss offer to spam my mailbox.  I have never been hit this hard!  Have you had any of these emails flood your inbox lately?  I have had all of these and more JUST TODAY!  Check out these crazy headlines:

A simple spray of this right into your mouth has the same effects as a 90-min cardio workout.

Spraying this mist into your mouth causes your body to quickly burn more fat then EVER before without even changing what you eat or the amount of cardio exercise you do.

Remove Excess Body Fat With Just One Spray Into Your Mouth

One Spray a Day Keeps the Fat Away!

ABC News Exclusive!

New Weightloss spray endorsed by Sharktank !

Just spray once a day into your mouth and experience sudden/ rapid fat-loss.

marz sprays

And of course, my very favorite:   **There is very limited inventory due to HIGH demand since being shown on ABC

So I am not saying at all that Marz Sprays is a scam.  But the people who are pushing it out there with those headlines, they are the scam.  Making false promises, no doubt trying to cash in on the New Year resolution crowd.

The only reason that I opened one of the emails to find out what it was is because of the Shark Tank reference.  It is one of my favorite shows and I figured there had to be something to this if they were involved.

And yes, Marz Sprays is a legitimate company that was featured on Shark Tank and got some of their financial backing.  They make various sprays such as vitamin boosters, sleep enhancers, energy boosters and the infamous weight loss spray.  It is simply a spray shot that gives you a high dose of B12 and other supplements known to enhance weight loss efforts.

What is in the Marz Weight Loss Spray?

According to their product information on their site, the Slim Spray contains popular ingredients such as Green Tea, Acai Berry, an assortment of vitamins including B12 and chromium picolinate.  It is also sugar and gluten free.  So this is actually a great supplement for a weight loss regime.  It’s too bad that the crazy internet marketers have got a hold of this and use their tactics to make a legitimate company look bad.

And I tell you, there is not a limited supply.  They sell Marz Spray  on Amazon so if you marz weight loss sprayreally did want to try it you could get one bottle to see if you like it or not.  The scammers that are emailing me are trying to get my credit card number of course so they can send me some kind of automatic shipment of this so called very limited product.  Ha, don’t fall for it!

And honestly, a weight loss spray?  I have been desperate at times, and frankly, I love to try new things in the hopes that one day I really will stumble across that diet miracle cure.  This is a supplement , not a miracle.

Honestly, you are much better off just exercising more and eating healthy.  I’m a huge fanmarz sprays of eating plans along the lines of Ketogenic, Paleo, and Mediterranean.   These eating plans focus on eating real and natural foods and moving more, just like our much thinner ancestors used to do.  Perhaps the Marz spray could be a good supplement, but that is not what those headlines are promising.

Don’t start your year off with this kind of false hope.  Just. Eat. Real. Food.

All the best to your optimum health in 2014!

Low Carb and Gluten Free Easy Cauliflower Casserole

easy cauliflower recipe

Low Carb and Gluten Free Easy Cauliflower Casserole

I have a dilemma sometimes when it comes to cooking.  My teenage son is a vegetarian, my oldest daughter is gluten free and I am Paleo, Low carb and Ketogenic! In fact, I have an entire site dedicated to the Ketogenic lifestyle.  That usually means there is meat involved in my meal.  So when I come across a baked cauliflower recipe that can be eaten as a meal by my veggie son, and it is also cheesy good and low carb, and I can simply add some more protein to mine, well I have to give it a try!

I came across the recipe on Pinterest and traced it down to a paleo site called The Iron You.  Thanks Iron You, this is a fantastic recipe that I will make again!  One of the things that makes this low carb cauliflower recipe so good is the caramelized veggies. I did tweak it a bit to get my ketogenic ratios up, but that is no matter, you can follow the original or add a side salad.

Here is my slightly changed version of this healthy cauliflower casserole recipe, made a little more Keto.

Low Carb Easy Cauliflower Casserole

  • 1 head cauliflower, broken into bite site florets
  • 1 pound button mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 large onion, cut into rings
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c sour cream
  • 1/2 c grated sharp cheddar
  • 1/2 c grated parmesan
  • fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions For Easy Cauliflower Recipe

  1. Heat oven to 425.  Take a casserole dish and rub with a small amount of butter or oil.
  2. Place cauliflower florets into dish in single layer.
  3. Drizzle with 1 tbsp of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes, toss and turn the cauliflower, then bake another 15 minutes.  The florets should be nicely browned. (Don’t skip this step of roasting the cauliflower, it really makes the dish!)
  5. In a large bowl beat eggs, cheddar and sour cream, set aside.
  6. In large frying pan, saute mushrooms in 1 tbsp oil until they are browning.  Add onion rings and cook until transparent, then add garlic and cook a minute or so more.
  7. Add the cooked cauliflower florets into frying pan and toss around until well combined.  Add all these vegetables into the big bowl of sour cream mixture, mix well and place back into the casserole dish.  Top with the parmesan cheese.
  8. Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  Uncover and bake for 10 more minutes.  Sprinkle with fresh parsley.

My son absolutely loved this dish!  It was creamy, cheesy and the roasting of the cauliflower gave it much flavor!  I will be making this again and again.

This made 8 servings:  Calories 146, Carbs 8, Fat 9, Protein 8, Fibre 2

(I had it the next day for lunch and I put bacon on top.  Mind blown.)

This easy cauliflower recipe is suitable for Atkins, The 100 diet, Ketogenic, gluten free and any other low carb diet plan.


The Fast Metabolism Diet

Fast Metabolism DietThe Fast Metabolism Diet

This is a best selling diet book authored by Haylie Pomroy and featured on Dr. Oz, complete with an A list  celebrity clientele.  (I think I should create a category for this site for those diets featured by Dr. Oz!)

There is a caloric cycling element to this diet (although no calories are counted), so it’s more like a nutrient cycling.

Phase 1 : Two days of mostly fruits and carbs in the way of whole grains (think quinoa and brown rice)

Phase 2:  Two days of mostly dark green veggies and lean proteins such as fish and poultry

Phase 3: Three days of all of the above with the addition of good fats such as avocado, nuts, coconut oil and olive oil

Ms. Pomroy has an impressive list of credentials and described as a ‘Celebrity Nutritionist’.  There are extensive online resources such as Pinterest recipe boards, facebook groups and blogs.  She also sells a shake mix on her website that supports the Fast Metabolism Diet. I checked the ingredients and they look really good, especially compared to other shake mixes.  Definitely worth a look and the cost works out to less than $2 per serving.

Pros and Cons of the Fast Metabolism Diet

Pros

Use of real  whole and healthy foods, lots of it

Plenty of online resources to help you, as well as a smart phone app

No counting calories

Cons

I am always hesitant about a diet guru promoting shakes and supplements

Counting calories or not, on the Phase 1 and Phase 2 days, the calories are very, very  low.

I find the phases and cycles a bit confusing

 

But certainly I feel this one is worth a try and I would love to hear from people who have done it.  How did you find the switching from phase to phase?

PS The Fast Metabolism Diet cookbook is available by preorder.


 

The Fast Metabolism Diet: Eat More Food and Lose More Weight

 

The Fast Metabolism Diet Cookbook: Eat Even More Food and Lose Even More Weight

 

101 Best Foods to Boost Your Metabolism


  • Affiliate Disclosure

    All Book and Product Reviews on this site are completely independant and not solicited or sponsored.We participate in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. Therefore, some of these recommendations may result in this site earning a small commission. This will not affect the price that you pay at all and helps to fund the site.