Antibiotics and Weight Gain

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Just as a side note today, I want to mention that, in spite of steadily and joyfully losing weight on the THM diet, I have experienced a two-week setback, due to a urinary tract infection and taking the antibiotic ciprofloxacin.

Antibiotics kill the bad bacteria that cause infection, so sometimes you need to take them. However, those same antibiotics kill a lot of the good bacteria in the gut, as well. Studies show that a deficit of healthy, probiotic flora in the intestinal tract causes or leads to weight gain. (See http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/265434.php) The short version: Taking antibiotics can cause weight gain if you don’t keep pouring in the probiotics as a countermeasure.

To make matters worse, some antibiotics (such as ciprofloxacin) can increase the prostaglandin ghrelin in the body as much as six times. Ghrelin increases hunger, which leads to overeating. Ghrelin also increases abdominal fat. (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090520055519.htm)

Any way you slice it, antibiotics make you fat. So, do what you have to do to heal your body if you have to take antibiotics. All the while, keep up your probiotic intake. (Make sure you don’t take probiotics within two hours of taking your antibiotic or you’ll waste your efforts.)

Then, when you’re all well again and off the antibiotics, keep taking lots of probiotics and eat probiotic-rich foods, like kimchi, real fermented sauerkraut, real fermented dill pickles, miso, yogurt, kefir, etc. You’ll soon be back to losing that temporary excess weight and abdominal fat.

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Low Carb Cloud Bread

Blk & Wh James on Beach

For your protein-based, healthy fat meals there’s very little grain or bread allowed, so I searched the internet and found this recipe for bread made largely of whole eggs. The recipe takes a bit of extra time and effort, since you have to whip the egg yolks and whites separately, bake; then store the bread rounds in plastic bags overnight, but this is now my favorite low-carb bread recipe. I think in the future I’ll experiment with adding some psyllium husk, ground flax seed, or glucommanan. Enjoy!

Cloud Bread

3 eggs, separated
3 tablespoons whole milk cottage cheese or 3 tablespoons cream cheese
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 gram of xylitol or other sweetener

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Separate the eggs very carefully, there must be no yolk in the white.
3. In one bowl, mix together the egg yolks, the 3 T. of Cottage Cheese OR Cream Cheese and the one packet of Sweetener until smooth.
4. In the other bowl add 1/4 teaspoon of Cream of Tartar to the whites and beat the whites on high speed until they are fluffy and form nice peaks.
5. Very carefully fold the egg yolk mixture into the egg whites until mixed, but try and not break down the fluffiness of the egg whites too much.
6. Spray two cookie sheets with fat-free cooking spray.
7. With a large spoon, “scoop” the mixture into 10 even rounds on the sheets (about the size of the top-half of the McDonalds hamburger bun; roughly 3/4 inch thick and 4 to 5 inches across).
8. Bake on the middle rack. Here is when you have to watch them, because the cooking time the same on any two batches. It is somewhere around 1/2 hour, but it could be less or more. You just need to watch them until them become nice and golden brown like a pancake.
9. Remove from the pans and cool on a rack or cutting board.
10. While warm they are crumbly and similar to cooked meringue – but don’t let this fool you! Once completely cool, seal them in a ziplock storage baggie or a tupperware overnight. They will totally change their consistency, to something much more like bread – a softer texture that is nice and chewy. If you do not like softer chewy bread, then eat them as they are, nice and crisp.

I even added some pecans, cinnamon, and xylitol to a couple of rounds and enjoyed what was very similar to a cinnamon roll.

Copied from http://www.food.com/recipe/carb-free-cloud-bread-411501

Lowfat Pumpkin Pie Recipe

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Okay, so I’m not a chef, so let me make that clear from the get-go. Also, I have been off of refined sugars for almost 8 months now (with a few innocuous weekly cheats now and then), so my sweet tooth is significantly diminished. I say this as a caveat, because I think this pie is deliciously sweet, whereas someone who’s used to eating sugar may think my recipe is pretty bland.

Lowfat Pumpkin Pie

1-1.5 cups nut/seed milk (almond or hemp)

1 T egg white

½ tsp glucommanan powder

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups mashed pumpkin

½ c nut flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/3 cup xylitol

¼ tsp ginger

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp nutmeg

¼ tsp ground cloves

½ tsp salt

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray 9” deep pie pan with cooking spray.
  2. Put 1st 5 ingredients in blender. Add pumpkin. Add other ingredients and blend on high for 2 minutes.
  3. Pour into pie pan and bake 60 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven. Cool. Chill. Top with Reddi Wip.

THM “Fuel Pull” Tuna Wraps Recipe

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If you’re used to reading my blog, you’ll know I am a long-time fan of probiotic-rich foods. For Trim Healthy Mama “Fuel Pull” days I like to make tuna sandwiches wrapped in lettuce. Here’s my simple recipe:

THM Fuel Pull Tuna Wraps

 Ingredients:

1 can of tuna (or salmon)

1 tsp.  light mayonnaise (optional)

2 T nonfat Greek yogurt

1 tsp kefir, plain

2 T “real” probiotic-rich sauerkraut (homemade or from a whole foods, health food store/section)

1 T “real” probiotic-rich dill pickle relish (from a whole foods or health food store/section)

Seasoning to taste (sea salt, pepper, Italian, etc.)

1 large lettuce leaf

Method:

Mix all and spread in a lettuce leaf. Add strips of red bell pepper, a little nonfat mozzarella cheese, sunflower seeds or some additional sauerkraut, if you’d like. Wrap in the lettuce leaf and eat.

Note: I also like making creamy, ranch-style “E” salad dressings with all of the above except the tuna and lettuce leaf.