Q: How long have you been working for E-Mealz?
A: I started E-Mealz with Jane 9 years ago. She asked me to come alongside her and make it happen & we launched in.
Q: What made you want to add the low carb plan to E-Mealz’s lineup?
A: The initial niche of doing E-Mealz was based on what’s on sale at grocery stores and how to make meals of it, but we noticed people wanted specific diet plans. Jane’s eating patterns were low fat & mine were low carb. The Atkins diet was very mainstream and then The Zone came along, as well as Sugar Busters…. we knew a low carbohydrate diet was a huge market out there. I also knew the low carb diet worked. The health benefits of a low carb diet are numerous. Not only is it a proven weight loss/control measure, it can address other health issues. Many people who struggle with diabetes or heart disease are finding low carb eating habits to be very beneficial in addressing their health needs. A low carb diet is a great place to start and can be tweaked by their doctor.
Q: How did you & Jane first start the E-Mealz service and was low carb around in the beginning phases?
A: I’m no expert. I’m just a regular person, who found out how to do the low carb diet effectively. I got to almost 200 lbs. I’m a typical woman who was getting up towards the 40 year mark and was watching my hormones and slowing metabolism take an affect on my body more than I wanted it to. Within a year’s time of practicing a low carb diet, I lost about 50 lbs. I read “The Zone” and I think this book is the most balanced, healthy approach you can take to losing weight. The same principles are used in almost every low carb plan on the market you can find.
Q: What made you decide to specialize in the low carb category & which meal plans do you write?
A: I was writing all the low carb plans all along, until about a year ago when I passed it off to one of our menu writers, Lori. I started the low carb plan and spearheaded it. In the beginning of E-Mealz it was me and Jane & 2-3 other people doing the whole thing. Little by little, we were able to hire more staff. Over time we’ve accumulated this incredible team of people who are good at what they do. We can stand on a stronger foundation with this great team.
A: The low carb plan is basically a shop the perimeter of the store type of plan. It includes fresh produce, lean meats, dairy, and as little prepackaged goods as possible. The whole principle is to eat a low glycemic index diet. Low carb foods are processed slowly through the body. A low carb diet is high in protein and loaded with favorable carbs like fruits and most vegetables. The mono unsaturated fats are also important in striking a healthy balance of foods. These include all nuts, olives, olive oils and avocados. Low carb foods take longer to metabolize and don’t raise your blood sugar levels. In general, stay away from anything white. (sugar, pasta, rice, breads, starchy veggies); that’s the bottom line. Low carb diets can vary greatly as to what they allow. What we have tried to do with our plan is strike a nice medium range from the left side of the gamut to the right. Some low carb diets will allow a small serving of the forbidden whites. Others absolutely forbid it. Sugar is the big ‘no-no’. The latest find for a healthy sugar substitute is called aguave nectar. It has a honey like consistency. It doesn’t have an after taste. It is in the purest form and doesn’t affect your blood levels. You can bake with it, cook with it. People are really excited about it.
Q: What is your best advice for someone who is new to the low carb plan?
A: Giving up bread and carbs can be difficult. If they can stomach it, pork rinds are a great substitute for chips to dip in guacamole or salsa. You can also crunch them up to make breadcrumbs. It’s tough to lose the desire for carbs/sugars because your body learns to love it like an addiction. You will discover fresh fruits & veggies as delicious. You can eat your fill! Nothing is wrong with a big appetite; it’s just a matter of learning to wean off those sugars and whites.
Q: What are some of your favorite low carb meals?
A: A delicious ratatouille is a steamed vegetable medley that I love pairing w/ a grilled chicken breast. One of the keys to low carb cooking is using herbs & spices. It’s what makes it taste so good. Salads are really good. Deep greens like a spinach salad is fabulous with some eggs & mushrooms. You have got to have a good dressing though! If you do make a wonderful salad from one of our menus, avoid low fat dressings. They are loaded with sugar. Bottled Greek dressing has no sugar…a great option.
The perfect food is a sweet potato. It is loaded with beta-carotene, Vitamins A and C, and antioxidants. It doesn’t metabolize in your system like a white potato. This is a nice option for those who just NEED a potato!! Just eat a small to moderate serving portion.
(Image via The Empowered Body & PA)