#KETOafterVSG

After extensive research, I decided to give this “Ketosis”/”Ketogenic”/”Keto” Diet a try.

Essentially, KETO diets follow a LCHF (Low CARB, HIGH fat) pattern.

Daily Macros are 70%FAT, 30% PROTEIN & ONLY 10% Carbs.

I have always eaten “lower carb” since surgery, but I had yet to try extremely low carb matched with high fat and a moderate level of protein.

I have seen nothing but great results in people who have tried this diet so I thought, Why not give it a shot?

This specific blog POST is where I will be posting my KETO updates. My goal is to do it for an entire month.

I started Monday (10/12/15) & Plan on going until 11/12/15 at least!

Will share as much of my journey throughout as I can so keep a lookout if you’re interested.

**Please note that I am not a Doctor or a nutritionist. I am not a professional nor do I claim to be. I am just going to share with y’all what works for me to do with what you please.**

***Β  I am also tracking everything I eat on MFP (My Fitness Pal), you can see everything I eat on there if you are interested. Feel free to add me- TheSecretLifeofBrea@gmail.com **

****Please feel free to ask ANY questions at ANY time and I will do my best to answer them to the best of my ability.****


Let’s talk KETO: Let me take it back a second and do my very best to explain what exactly Ketosis is and what is done for a person. Ketosis is a metabolic process. When your body does not have enough carbohydrates from food for your cells to burn for energy, it burns FAT instead, making KETONES. These can be tested via a dip-strip into urine. I will be using these throughout my journey. The darker in color, the more ketones are be created, the more fat you are burning.

“Why KETO, Brea?“: I bet many of you are asking why specifically I am choosing to do Keto. The reason is pretty simple. Due to my insulin resistance issues, and PCOS, it is hard for me to lose weight. According to research, people with these issues do extremely well on a KETO diet. Not only will it aid in the area of FAT LOSS, but it is supposed to aid in hormone balance. We Shall See! πŸ™‚


Day one:

3 Months Post-OP

Hey guys!

Today, well technically yesterday (10/13/15) is/was my 3 month #Surgiversary .

Boy has this journey been incredible.

I totally feel like I have learned more about myself in these last three months than I have in a long time.

I’m not sure as to my weight loss these past three months because I made the decision to do a #scalefast last month. I will be breaking this bad boy and posting updated pictures, a new Vlog (by Request) and my stats on OCT 21st.

I have my “3 month post-op” visit with my surgeon and internist on this day. I cant wait to see where I’m at at that point.

I’m hoping to be 219 pounds which would make me down a total of 50 pounds in three months.

We shall see how that goes.

My first month was rough, but by now, at this three month mark life has become a lot easier. My diet has become more of a lifestyle. I really don’t miss crap food that much anymore. I’ve mentally progressed into thinking that my body is worth so much, why feel it with crappy food all the time? (Who am I, right?) Time has definitely cause great change in my physical, emotional and mental states. I’m so glad and thankful for this opportunity.

I would absolutely recommend this procedure to anyone who is struggling with their weight.

You will not regret it.

I am so happy to have control over my life again.

I’ll be checking in real soon.

God Bless,

Brea

One month (&a Half) Post-op!

Hey Y’all!

I know each time I post, I say that I’m totally going to get better at this posting shenanigans and usually don’t get very much better. I am so sorry for that. Sometimes life just gets in the way.

Please feel free to follow me on my surgery Instagram! ( @thesecretlifeofbrea) I pretty much post dailyΒ  on there as it is much easier to update, but once again I will try to be extremely better at updating my blog too. πŸ™‚

Soooooooo, today is August 26th (two days after my birthday) & so I am officially one month and 13 days post-op.

It has been an incredible journey thus far, and I am so excited to see where it takes me in the many months to come.

I haven’t weighed in this week, but as of last week I am down about 31 pounds, and 31 inches all around my body, with about 4 of those off my natural waist and 4 more of those off my “Belly Button” measurement. I’m pretty excited about it!

The journey has been a roller coaster and a great learning experiencing everyday. I about 6 weeks post-op now and I am barely starting to feel like me again. It has been hard, but I have absolutely no regrets. I am loving this opportunity and this second chance at life. I’m feeling better and exercising now! Me&Exercise were never friends before, so that’s pretty cool!

As of (last) Friday, I am 238 Pounds. I REALLY want to be out of the 230’s. I wish I can jump on a high-speed train to one-derland. However, I know this is a process and not as speedy of one as I thought it would be, but that’s okay. I’m learning to trust it.

The first week has probably been THE TOUGHEST so far. I had a really hard time transitioning. I had many doubts and at one point even hated myself for doing what I did. I thought I was going to be stuck at week one forever, so for those of you reading this, WEEK ONE WILL PASS. It gets better every single day.

I will post a much longer update when I hit that two month mark along with a youtube video really soon!

Thank you all for loving, supporting and constantly encouraging me.

God Bless you all.

Brea

Brea’s Sexy Cauly-Crust Pizza. πŸ˜πŸ•

Hello Lovessss! Below I have for you the World’s best Cauliflower Pizza (Crust) Recipe

After multiple sad attempts, I think I finally have mastered the art of the “Cauliflower Pizza Crust”.

This is the first time I have been successful and made an actual Pizza and not a sad “Casserole” or some sort of “Goolash”. I thought I’d share this beauty with you. I love that this totally satisfies the Pizza craving with out the loads of carbs and additional unnecessary calories that come from the delicious dough/bread. Top it off with  your favorite possibly homemade (recipe to come) pizza sauce, some Mozzarella cheese and your favorite pizza toppings and it is heavenly.

Definitely  new favorite of mine.

Here we go

Brea’s Sexy Cauly Crust

Needed:

  • 1 Medium Sized Cauliflower
  • 1/4 Cup Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1/4 Cup Freshley Shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Egg
  • Teaspoon Oregano
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Garlic Powder
  • Fresh Basil (About 10 leaves)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

First, cut your Cauliflower into florets

My beautiful little cauliflower.
My beautiful little cauliflower.

Chop him into florets and toss him into your food processor.

Process until cauliflower has a rice consistency:

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Remove cauliflower from food processor and place in microwave-safe bowl.

Place in microwave to “Steam” for about 6 minutes.

Let cool for about 10 minutes before proceeding to the next step.

WARNING: The following step is by far the most difficult, yet the most CRUCIAL part of this process. This part really makes or breaks your crust and cause it to go from delicious to gross real quick.

Place steamed and cooled cauliflower in a kitchen towel and squeeze until your hands cramp and you feel like their is no more water left in your cauliflower mush. (Be careful not to burn your hands)

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Once every drop of water has been squeezed out of your cauliflower, toss it into bowl, add an egg, both cheeses, and seasons and mix into a dough.

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Place on parchment paper and shape into a true pizza crust.

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Also crucial: Place this bad boy in the oven on 500 degrees for about 15-20 minutes.

Wait until he is nice and brown

Add your sauce, cheese, and favorite toppings and place back into  the oven for about 5 minutes or until the cheese is melt-y and gooey to your liking. Let stand for about 5 minutes to cool and to allow crust to harden.

BEAUTIFUL <3
BEAUTIFUL ❀

It even holds up in slice form

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It is truly delicious and is gluten-free and completely flour-free.

Definitely clean-eating approved.

Enjoy Y’all

Brea

P.S. Don’t be discouraged by the multiple steps, they are all pretty easy to execute.

Please let me know how it works out for you guys!

DAY 5- POST-OP

Hello Loves!

Today is officially five days post VSG. (Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy)

Today is also the first official day where I feel like I’m going to be okay.

It has been rough.

I had surgery Monday, (7/13) had an awesome, successful, surgery. I was in the hospital for two days following, and all I did was walk and sleep! Those whole two days were a blur.

I came home from the hospital Wednesday morning. I truly believe Wednesday was the most difficult day thus far. The first day home from the hospital was hard.Β  Things totally got real for me. The gas pains were absolutely unbearable. I couldn’t drink much without feeling pain. I could barely get any fluids down. So many questions starting running through my mind. “Was this the right thing to do?” “I shouldn’t have done this.” “Why did I do this to myself.” It was pretty depressing.

Thursday morning I woke up with an whole new perspective. I KNOW what I did was best. I know what I did was the right thing to do. I wanted this. I just never mentally prepared for the transition. In my 6 month IRP Program, I prepared for the after, the chewing rule, the no-drink/eat simultaneously rule, preparing my mind for small portions while melting pounds off my body.

What I DIDN’T prepare for was the mental part of this journey and the transitition period between the surgery itself and the day around 3-4 weeks post-op when you can actually sit down and eat (small portions) of normal food with your family. It’s so tough trying to sit at the table drinking soup while my family is eating steaks, twice-baked potatoes, quesadilla’s etc. It was almost depressing. It pretty much feels right now like I’m going through a bad break-up with food. It sounds sick and twisted and posting it here for everyone to read definitely realize that I have a problem and shows me a perfect example why I needed this. It is just tough. I don’t know how people can assume this is “the easy way out”. I am only 5 days post-op, but it is one of the hardest things I’ve been through.

Though difficult, I know it will be absolutely rewarding. It’s just a process and a journey that I have to believe in.

Every day seems like it is getting easier. I hope this continues.

Thank you to everyone for the constant love & support.

I’m so thankful for each of you.

Update in a few.

All my love,

Brea

XOXOXO

P.S. I’m sick of liquids. πŸ˜‰

T minus 2 Days.

Hey Friends! Today is officially July 11th, 2015 in Southern Cali.

Do y’all know what that means? It means that my surgery, my second chance at life, my new beginning, my chance to truly start living my life, and one of the major foundations on my journey to ‘self-love’ is exactly two days away. In two days my life will change. Absolutely no looking back.

It’s been a super long process. I started the process to have this surgery (thinking it would take about a month) back in November. I started my six month ‘IRP’ in December and remember sadly feeling like July was so far away and here we are July 11th.

I know I haven’t shared too much with you guys, but be on the lookout for a video on my NEW Youtube ChannelΒ  just search TheSecretlifeofBrea and feel free to subscribe. I will give you a proper introduction, as well as some before stats etc.

I hope to be posting a lot more in the future. I plan on sharing every bit of my journey with you: the good, the bad & the ugly. Thank you for all your support & motivation. I am so blessed to be part of such a wonderful community of people who raidate love & encouragement.

Talk to y’all real soon.

All my love,

Brea

P.S. This pre-op diet bologna is the worst.

Please excuse me while I go grub on some broth! LOL

Paleo “Fettucini Alfredo” with Cauliflower “Alfredo” Sauce

As I was driving home from work yesterday I decided to stop at Ralph’s to pick up some groceries to cook some healthy dinner. I really wanted to make some type of pasta dish. & With my new obsession with Cauliflower, I figured why not attempt some Cauliflower “Alfredo” sauce and throw it over some spaghetti squash. Add a little chicken and bacon in it. Maybe even some broccoli? I started to think, what if I can do this completely dairy-free, gluten free, and carb-free? I would feel so accomplished. Then I thought what If I can do all this AND make it tasty? So I took on the challenge, and with my family as my witness, it was a mouthful of healthy deliciousness.

I had to share it with you.

This is the first recipe that I have ever attempted to write on my blog so please bear with me!

& Most importantly, Enjoy!

For the Spaghetti Squash:

  • I used 2 Spaghetti Squash (Big and yellow, next to acorn squah and butternut squash in produce section)
  • Olive Oil
  • Sea Salt

Preheat oven to 375ΒΊF

Grab a cookie sheet and grease with Olive Oil

Cut the spaghetti squash in round circles scrape out centers and place on olive oil greased cookie sheet.

Sprinkle with a little sea salt and place on top rack of oven for about 1 hour and 15 minutes

Spaghetti squash.  Centers cleaned out.
Spaghetti squash.
Centers cleaned out.

While the spaghetti squash is cooking—–

For the Cauliflower “Alfredo Sauce”:

  • One head of Cauliflower
  • 2 Cloves of garlic (I prefer the jarred crushed garlic from Trader Joes)
  • 1 Onion -I used a yellow one, they caramelize better-
  • 1 Tablespoon butter – I used clarified, grass-fed GHEE butter- You can also sub. for Coconut oil
  • 4.5 Cups of Chicken Broth
  • About 3/4 Cup Milk- I used Almond Milk-
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Start by placing 1 tablespoon of butter or oil into a saucepan over medium heat. Allow it to melt and add sliced onion in round circles to pan. Add garlic and saute for about 20 minutes in a covered pan.

Yellow onion sliced into circles and placed in pan with garlic.
Yellow onion sliced into circles and placed in pan with garlic.

While onion and garlic saute, pour the 4.5 cups of chicken broth into a pan and bring to boil. Once the broth is boiled add chopped cauliflower florets to the boiling broth. Allow to boil, stirring occasionally for about ten minutes.

I prefer organic free range chicken broth. I totally think you can taste the difference..... Call me crazy...For an even healthier option you can choose the low-sodium container.  (:
I prefer organic free range chicken broth. I totally think you can taste the difference….. Call me crazy…For an even healthier option you can choose the low-sodium container. (:

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This is the time to prepare your Vitamix or blender. πŸ™‚

Once the garlic and onion is sauteed to your preference remove the mixture from heat.

Drain the cauliflower is tender remove from heat and drain. **Save about 1/2 cup of the chicken broth** (Carefully as it will be very hot)

Add Cauliflower, 3/4 of milk*, onion mixture, 1/2 cup of broth, salt and pepper and blend until smooth.Β Β Β Β  **You may add more milk if you desire a thinner sauce. I prefer it thicker because it reminds me more of my full fat, creamy, cheesy, UNhealthy sauce.**

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After :)
After πŸ™‚ I can truly eat this like soup! Add some bacon bits!… MMMMM πŸ˜‰

For the chicken/bacon/broccoli mixture:

  • 2 lb. Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast cut into bite sized pieces
  • 12 Strips of nitrate-free bacon
  • 1 head of broccoli cut into bite sized pieces
  • 2 Tsp. Garlic Powder
  • A pinch of dried basil, parsley and oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Mrs. Dash- Garlic & Herb (Optional)
  • Olive Oil or coconut oil

Add chicken to pan with olive or coconut oil. Cook for about 10 minutes. Add Mrs. Dash garlic and herb for flavor.

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After ten minutes, remove chicken and set aside.

Add the 12 pieces of bacon cut into bite sized pieces to the pan and cook until crispy.

Add broccoli cook for about two minutes, add chicken and all the remaining spices to mixture. Cook for about 4 more minutes.

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The final step is the easiest!

After the spaghetti squash has finished cooking, remove from oven and allow to cool. Using a fork scrape away squash from the peelings of the squash. This is what creates the “Spaghetti” look.

Put the “Noodles” into a casserole pan. Add the chicken mixture and mix with a fork. Add as much or as a little as the sauce as you’d like and mix. Place in oven on 375 for about twenty minutes if you choose. I added a little bit of freshley-grated parmesan cheese on top before placing in the oven.

It was scrumptious. πŸ™‚

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I hope y’all can enjoy this recipe. It seems like alot of work but I promise you it’s super easy.

If you have any questions please feel free to ask me!

All my love,

Brea

#WednesdaysWord

Today I decided to try and start a new weekly posting opportunity on my newly revamped blog. As I put God first through my entire journey I thought having a “#WednesdaysWord” post weekly would help me to remember how great our God is and why I have the awesome opportunity to pursue this journey. As I share every bit of my journey with you I figured this would be a great place to start! So every Wednesday, my goal is to post something that had spoke to me that week. 😊 

So here we go, #WednesdaysWord 

  
This is truly my prayer for everyone out there reading this post. I truly hope you allow God to fill your heart with a peace that only He can give. I know this week and really the entire month of May I have struggled with so much fear, anxiety, stress etc. May we remember there is so much more to life than our fears, discouragements and anxieties. God is good and always has a plan. Stay faithful and most importantly have peace. πŸ’žπŸ’«βœŒπŸΌ 

All my love, 

Brea 

Happy June!

Today is June first loves! Happy day! One month and 12 days until surgery!

I’m beyond thrilled.

I have one more pre-op visit with my nutritionists and internist ont the 20th. I have my pre-op with my surgeon on June 24th and surgery is scheduled for July 13th. Time is flying!!!!!! πŸ™‚

Cannot wait to share every bit of my journey with all of you!

Hope yall have an amazing June. πŸ™‚

God Bless!

All my love,

Brea

T-60 Days!

Hey Y’all. I know it has been awhile since I last posted. This has been a crazy four months! Woke up today realizing it was May 13th which means surgery is officially in 60 days. (If all goes according to plan)

I have my 5th month pre-op nutritionist/internist visit this Saturday 5/16 and I feel like I’ve gained some weight since my last visit.Β  It’s hard trying to find a balance between eating right/losing weight and eating everything you can NOW because surgery is coming fast and I won’t be able to eat those things anymore. It’s definitely a mind game.

My highest weight was recently 270 pounds. As of my last visit with the surgeon’s office I was 253.4. Which is a loss of 16.6 pounds. I’m definitely happy about it. I’m just so nervous that I will be up a few pounds come Saturday. I have three days. Going to “Master Cleanse” my way through the next 3 days.Β  I will definitely be posting so much more now that we are so close to my date! Things are getting really close! Really quick! Sooooo excited. πŸ™‚

I will update y’all about Saturdays (5/6) appt this weekend.

Alllll my love,

BREA