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Too much time on food prep (rant)


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Oh my!

We have a household of two and both of us are on day 4. We have been shopping, cooking, eating, and cleaning the kitchen since Sunday. I have been trying to cook leftovers and prep things in advance, but I find that we are needing much more food than we do on a more omnivorous diet, even with my husband trying to restrict his intake of the protein and fat because his brain doesn't quite "get it" yet.

I am so committed to completing the Whole30 that I would rather go hungry for the next 26 days than make other bad food choices, although going hungry is not a good choice. I have Type 2 diabetes that is controlled by diet, exercise, and oral medications and the lower blood sugars are confusing right now.

I was on a 1200 calorie a day diet for so long that I think my stomach must be tiny because I have trouble fitting in enough food to last until the next meal.

I am adding good fats to everything and extra if the meal didn't naturally have good fats, but I must be missing something. Our copy of the book finally arrived and I really want to read it because I have so much to learn. But, eating a variety of whole, healthy foods has been so time-consuming! I have loved what we have had and all of the colors and textures, but I am not sure we will survive all of the time spent in the kitchen.

Thanks, I needed that...

Nico

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I feel ya! I had a meltdown while on my W30, feeling like I never left the kitchen! I still feel that way sometimes... But it does get easier as you get in to the rhythm, start making batches of stuff to last a few days...it's not easy but once you start feeling the benefits it's so worth it and you'll find you just don't want to go back.

That said, I'd be scared to add up the hours I spend each week chopping veg... It's better than sitting on the couch eating chocolate I suppose ;)

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Thanks Jodea!

I figured I would not be alone. I'm hoping to have a better grasp on quantities soon so that we will have leftovers. I prepped three sweet potatos today and cooked an extra batch of steak so that hubby can add it to his meals and not go hungry!

And, I froze one serving of soup from dinner, leaving one for each of us for lunch tomorrow. I was disappointed to see that my lemongrass isn't compliant, but the soup is great as is. My meat is chopped for dinner tomorrow and salmon patties are ready for breakfast. All that's left for tomorrow is VEGGIE chopping for dinner. -sigh- If only I could chop with my non-dominant arm to give the other one a rest. We even picked up more cutting boards and a collander for defrosting shrimp.

I am a little worried about my blood sugar when I increase my activity level back to pre-W30-kitchen levels.

Without all of the food prep, I think this would be pretty easy and I really can't wait to read the book! Oh, and we're enjoying checking off as many of the green foods on the shopping list as we can for the highest nutritional value. :-)

Nico

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Nico, I hear ya and I'm only cooking for one :). I've got the proyein part covered. whenever I cook I cook vast amounts like 2 - 3 pounds ground meat or super large pots of chilli or curry and freeze it in individual portions so I can just grab out the freezer as needed. I feel I spend most time prepping veg. I try to prep or cook as much as possible in one go. If it's cooked I put it in tupperware type boxes in the fridge to reheat as needed. I'll chop up a couple of pounds of carrots at a time and put them in green bags in the fridge. I've also been known to clean veg in the kitchen then carry it through and chop it on a tray on my lap while I'm watching TV :) and if I only had more room in the freezer I could buy large packs of frozen veg and save aeons of time :wub: good luck

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You can also make big batches of veggie bases that you can just dump some protein in when the time comes. I like to make big vats of veggie curry with coconut milk etc, or ratatouille, soups, whatever. You can then freeze batches and add different proteins/flavourings/spices etc to it when reheating so you get a bit of variety instead of eating the same frozen meal 15 times :)

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Wow, you just made me realize that maybe all the extra time that I am extending my life by through healthy eating is going to be spent in the kitchen.... Ha. But for me it's worth it! Everyone else taking unhealthy shortcuts might also be shortcutting their life...

When it gets really bad, find some healthy shortcuts... For me it's cooking ground beef and rainbow salad ( two packets), tuna and olives in a tin of tomatoes, boiled eggs with carrot and cucumber....

Also find a rhythm that works for you. Mine is to make 3 lots of three dishes in one day to rotate over the next 3-4 days

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I do one big "vegetable roast" on the weekend (10 x 15 Pyrex casserole pan). The first week I did parsnsips, carrots, turnips. This week I did carrots and turnips in that pan and roasted beets in an 8x8 pan. I am the only one doing the Whole 30 in my house, so I get all of them to myself.

I supplement these vegetables with frozen broccoli, frozen green beans, frozen spinach, and diced frozen butternut squash. (I buy these at Whole Foods). I just defrost the amount I'm going to eat for each meal.

I also bought two bunches of fresh kale for recipes, a small container of Olivia's baby kale and a large container of Olivia's spring mix. I eat a salad every day for lunch, so those lettuce mixes go quickly.

The only regular chopping I do is cucumber, tomato, or special ingredients, like if I want to put pineapple into a curry.

But, I do also cook all the ground beef and chicken I'm going to eat in advance.

A frittata is great, because you can cut up leftovers and have them in a salad as the protein.

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I have been feeling the same way about time spent in the kitchen! Not to mention I've been pretty much grocery shopping every day! I live in an apartment with two roommates so I only get a third of the fridge and I'm in Boston with no car so stocking up for a week and lugging it all home via train would be near impossible. I feel like people at the grocery store are soon going to think I'm addicted to grocery shopping!

The redeeming fact, though, has been that I feel I'm really understanding ingredients for the first time and am feeling confident to come up with my own recipes. That in itself is sort of freeing. And of course how good I've gradually been starting to feel over the past week is enough for me to keep me motivated. I've been telling myself that I've been living one way for so long, that of course any life change that's truly worth it will entail some hard work in the beginning. I think it just takes getting into your own groove and then one day you'll realize that it's become easy and like second nature, just like your old lifestyle was...at least I hope that will happen! Good luck with your journey! :)

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I find myself wanting to prep for the week but I really like variety in my meals....in my situation I do have the luxury of time to cook during the week, and I really enjoy cooking. I like the 'big batch of veggies' roast thing but honestly I get bored and want diff veggies every night! My kitchen is never clean and I'm resigned to that fact lol

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abur0418

I am a lot like you. I have time to cook and could leave a dirty dish for a bit and I love variety. The variety is what helped me get through. I loved the various colors and textures and we had eaten 13 of the "green" veggies on the list by about day 4.

Happily, I found a bit of a balance where we did start getting some leftovers from meals or one extra serving to freeze. I feel much better.

Oh, and my husband can't sleep with one single dirty dish in the sink, so I try to do my part during the day to help him out. The small fridge and freezer are not helping, but it has gotten much easier!

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I found several steam in the bag refrigerated veggies. They are more expensive but have saved me mentally so many times. Green beans, butternut squash, snow peas, broccoli, cauliflour, carrots etc. I always have a few on hand so if I get behind on cooking veggies I have a quick alternative.

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