Sunday, January 20, 2013

Flourless, Protein Pumpkin Bread

I've been making some huge changes to my eating habits these last couple of months.
And I couldn't be happier!  For the first time, I don't feel like I'm restricting myself.  

It all started with listening to an AMAZING podcast that you can find HERE
called Dishing Up Nutrition.  

Most people know my obsession with The Jillian Michaels Show podcast.  But Dishing Up Nutrition gives information about using natural foods to help heal your body.  The information they share is just mind blowing and so fascinating.  They are licensed nutritionists and they talk about using nutrition to improve skin, mood, muscle ache (such as, fibromyalgia)  illnesses, digestive problems (IBS), depression, allergies, sleep, metabolism, cravings (get rid of), inflammation, anxiety, joints....I mean the list goes on and ON!

The ones in BOLD, are the reasons why I chose to change my eating habits.   

So why these areas?

  1. Skin- I have been having the most random breakouts, so this is a huge motivator for me.
  2. Mood- I find myself getting agitated about the littlest things. 
  3. Sleep- Sugar and processed carbs keep me up at night and takes me longer to get to sleep
  4. Metabolism- I want to burn the most calories, and that comes from eating healthy foods.
  5. Cravings- eating processed flours and sugars will cause you to keep wanting it and craving it causing Addiction.
  6. Inflammation- I have a slight case of scoliosis. Certain foods (processed) cause my muscles and back to hurt.
  7. Depression- I have bouts of depression sporadically.  I struggle with using food as my happy drug, "I have to have this bowl of ice-cream to make me feel better."  I was tired of using sugar or processed carbs to make me feel better.
  8. Anxiety- I've been dealing with anxiety since adolescence.  Processed foods causes my blood sugar to rapidly rise and fall causing my blood sugar to be unstable and therefore make me more anxious.
So now that you understand that I'm not changing my eating habits because I want to lose weight?!
It's SOOO the opposite. Plus I have a lot of motivators, as you can see above.  Dishing Up Nutrition has helped me turn to REAL FOOD.  And I LOVE it!  Before I use to eat a LOT of whole wheat bread.  Here's how some of my days went:

1.  A slice in the morning, sometimes 2 (with a bowl of cereal)
2.  a sandwich for lunch (2 slices)
3.  Sometimes a sandwich for dinner, if I was feeling lazy and didn't feel like cooking.
4.  Sometimes a slice of bread with peanut butter, a midnight snack


As you can see I was eating a lot of BREAD...haha I love bread!
I was baking a ton you can see from my blog...but a lot of it with whole wheat!  So I was a little confused.  I thought, as long as it's whole wheat, it's way better for you.  

Not necessarily.  Dr. William Davis, (Author of WHEAT BELLY) claims that 2 pieces of whole wheat bread raises your blood sugar faster than a candy bar.  Now I haven't read Wheat Belly but that fact caught my attention pretty fast.  In other words, wheat or any processed flours can cause Acne, mood swings, cravings, inflammation, anxiety, digestive problems etc.  So I thought, well it's time to make a change!

It took me a while to realize it, because the website/podcast doesn't refer themselves to the Paleolithic culture, they just encourage Real Food to promote Real Wellness.  But, if you need something to compare it to, I would say it's quite similar to what the Paleo diet believes in- Real food: Nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruit, Meat.  It.....Excludes grains, legumesdairy products, white potatoes, refined salt, refined sugar, and processed oils.  

I do partake in a bit of legumes and a little bit of dairy, but rarely. 

When it comes to MEAT, I mostly eat chicken and occasionally ground beef.

I'll have a Steak maybe 1-3 times a year, Turkey- mostly around holidays, Lamb-rarely/never. Ribs-  4-5 times a year (because Blake and I LOVE Texas Roadhouse and they have THE BEST ribs)

Fish is a great source of many health benefits, such as healthy fats and protein.
But I'm just not a big fish eater. I'll maybe have it 1-2 times a year.

To get protein in other areas. I eat a lot of eggs. 
I probably eat 2-4 eggs per day!  

I LOVE eggs! I've never had a problem with eggs.

I also eat Nuts, Beans (mostly kidney, black beans, white beans and chickpeas) , Seeds (If I have any in the house) and Quinoa which is great for protein- 9g per cup!

Go HERE to find a list of meatless ways to get protein!

So what I focus on most with every meal is: 40% protein, 30% carbs, 30% fats.

A typical breakfast for ME includes: 
1.  2 eggs cooked in coconut oil, scrambled with chopped spinach
2.  half a baked sweet potato
3.  5-6 almonds or walnuts 

I use to eat a bowl of cereal for breakfast in the morning but I would find 
myself hungry within the hour or ravenous right before lunch.

With my new regime of breakfast items, I have never found myself 
hungry or unsatiated in the morning.

Making the change to have no bread or processed flours or sugars was
quite daunting at first but if you find yourself having any of those same stumbling
blocks that I listed above, you find yourself super motivated as I have been!

There are lots of wonderful baking recipes that don't require wheat or other processed flours.  You can substitute with:

1.  Almond Flour
2.  Coconut Flour
3. Oat Flour......ETC

*These are what I've discovered thus far, you may find more :)

And when it comes to SUGAR, I get my sugar fill instead now from Sweet Potatoes, Bananas, Stevia, Agave Nectar Syrup (occasionally), Apples, Berries etc.

For Healthy FATS, I eat lots of avocados, Nuts- walnuts, pecans, almonds, macadamia nuts, cashews.. really any nut is fine (mostly I eat walnuts and almonds).  I also cook with Coconut Oil to add healthy saturated fats into my diet (yes, saturated fats are good for you, as long as it's natural)

I'm so excited about the changes I've been making!  Here are the changes I've noticed so far:

1.  My nightly chocolate cravings, sugar cravings have subsided (use to drive me insane)
2.  I sleep better at night
3.  My skin has improved amazingly
4.  I felt a little weak at first because my body was so use to having BREAD as my staple food, but now that I've been doing this for 2 months, I noticed that I have more energy before my workouts.
5.  My stomach is more lean and cut---super stoked about this one :) (hello? wheat = wheat belly..)

Holy shiz....I have been rambling. You know from my posts that I never ramble. I get to the point with all my recipes.  And also I want to mention that I will still continue to post recipes just like I have in the past, cookies, cupcakes etc. But I will also be including LOTS of low-carb/High-protein/with healthy fats---Recipes as well!

So with this post I just hope to kind of spread the word if ANYONE is dealing with similar things as me or other areas that I listed above and just know that it  CAN be easily fixed with Nutrition!

Okay, I'm done :) , now TRY this Delicious (Nutritional) recipe below!

makes 2 small loaves

1/2 c pumpkin puree
1 ripe banana
1/3 c natural smooth peanut butter
4 eggs
2 Tbsp Agave Nectar Syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbsp Almond Flour
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp pumpkin spice
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder

  1. In a blender or food processor, blend 1/2 c pumpkin puree, 1 banana, 1/3 c smooth peanut butter, 4 eggs, 2 Tbsp agave nectar syrup and 1 tsp vanilla extract until smooth.
  2. Add 3 Tbsp almond flour, 1 Tbsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, 1/4 tsp pumpkin spice, 1/4 tsp baking soda and 1/4 tsp baking powder. Blend until well mixed.
  3. Pour batter into 2 small loaf pans.  Bake in 375 degree oven for 30-35 minutes. 

*To check if done, press on loaf to see if it bounces back.  Or stick a toothpick in the middle and toothpick should come out clean, to show it's done.

Inspiration: PaleOMG


  1. This is exactly what I needed to read. I have been in a tailspin with my diet. So discouraged. But, you are an inspiration! So proud of you and so grateful! After I buy some bananas, I am going to try this recipe. Thank you!

    1. Thanks! I love sharing what I learn and what works for me. We all need motivation!