Alcohol: How much is too much?

How much alcohol is too much for low carb, healthy fat, keto lifestyle?

 

“With Christmas soon upon us and the swing of festive parties and celebrations underway, champagne corks will be a-popping and cocktail shakers to the ready. I, like many, really do love a glass or two, especially at times of celebration, but I’m so often asked for guidance about how much is too much?”

Amelia Freer,Registered Nutritional Therapist FdSc, Dip ION

Amelia further goes on to say that there has been a long-held belief amongst the medical community that a little bit of alcohol does us good. this comes from studies that seem to show that all causes of death (but particularly heart disease) are higher in people who completely abstained from alcohol, than was in people that drank moderately (a couple or so units a day). (Corraeo et al., 2004)

She does however, point out that alcohol consumption has been linked to a huge number of problems. It is after all, a psycho-active substance that can sadly lead to significant problems with addiction and dependency. It has also been linked to over 200 disease and injury conditions.

Continue reading “Alcohol: How much is too much?”

Cook something – Roast Chicken

Banting staple roast chicken recipe

Quantities given are for 4 servings

Make a point of sourcing organic chickens rather than free-range for this Banting staple. Although free-range birds are not penned, they are still fed hormones.

Ingredients

1 head garlic
1 tbsp dried thyme
1 tbsp dried parsley
1 tbsp dried oregano
4 tbsp melted butter
1 medium white onion (quartered)
1 whole chicken
2 large lemons (quartered)
1 handful fresh thyme
2 medium red onion (quartered)

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 200°C.
  2. Cut the garlic in half vertically through the middle.
  3. Peel the cloves off one half of the garlic and place them in a pestle and mortar with the dried herbs and the melted butter.
  4. Mash together with some seasoning to make a paste.
  5. Rub the chicken all over with the paste and season well with salt and pepper.
  6. Place the quarters of one onion and a lemon in the cavity of the chicken with some of the fresh thyme.
  7. Place the remaining ingredients into a roasting tray and place the chicken on top.
  8. With a piece of string, tie the legs together to keep the aromatics in the cavity (the most basic form of trussing).
  9. Roast for 70 to 85 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken. Check to see if the chicken is cooked by sticking a skewer into the thickest part of the leg – the juices should run clear. If not, return it to the oven for another 10 minutes and check again.

Cook’s Tip

If you roast it properly, not only do you get some good fat in the tray for later use, and obviously heaps of protein, but more importantly, once you’ve finished carving you can bang that carcass straight into water to make a broth.

 

Is low-carb an expensive and elitist lifestyle?

Gold bar on a plate with knife and fork

One of the greatest beliefs around is that “Low-Carb is Expensive”

– Jonno Proudfoot

There is a common misconception that academics and scientists are the only people whose opinions count in a any argument. When I dipped my toe into the academic community I was appalled by how much arguing happens over scientific papers instead of looking at what is right in front of them. There are many debates about nutrition that can be won on pure personal experience, and often, as little as plain old common sense.

One of the greatest beliefs around low-carb is that ‘Low-Carb is EXPENSIVE’

Suzanne Garrett, one of our own Facebook followers, testified to this by her own admission when she commented on our post with the following:

‘Agree with these comments, heard them all. But it is expensive to buy pastured/wild caught/organic/minimally processed. No getting around that fact – it’s a matter of degrees of expensive and how to economize by buying seasonally and in bulk. Still very expensive’

I have to agree with Suzanne. Pasture-reared, wild-caught and minimally processed food is generally more expensive.

Low-carb, by definition says nothing about pasture-reared or wild-caught. Sure, all nutrition experts (hopefully even those who are not pro-low-carb), would advocate pasture reared meat and organic produce for optimal health. But in the history of Real Meal Revolution there has only ever been one mention of the quality of ingredients and that was in the first book The Real Meal Revolution. It said something along the lines of “you should aim to eat pasture reared and organic as much as possible.”

We still believe that that is where you should aim. But it is totally unsustainable for almost everyone on earth. Posh meat is expensive. Organic veggies are expensive. Most of these foods are also very hard to get hold of.

Low-Carb doesn’t mean low-carb, super elite, organic, grass-fed or that the ingredients need to have been flown in on the wings of a condor. Quality aside, there are also some tag-along health hacks that have been added to the low-carb ‘must-haves’ that don’t quite line up. Himalayan crystal salt as opposed to normal salt is one that kills me. If we’re trying to save the environment by shortening the distance from pasture-to-plate, using Himalayan crystal salt is like asking Mother Earth to smoke a Texan Plain every time you salt your avocado.

Low-carb also doesn’t mean eating only Real Meal Revolution recipes either. That would be delicious, but that too is unsustainable for every meal of the day, every day of the week. Unless, you’ve got a private chef, in which case I recommend giving it a try.

While the recipes in Real Meal Revolution’s cook books show case a few high-end dinner options, they should not be mistaken for prescriptive dietary advice. The recipes were developed to illustrate how deliciously one could eat on a low-carb diet. If you skip the duck with berry coulis and coconut pancakes it will not negatively effect your journey to awesome weight.

Low-carb means low-carb and nothing else. That means eating very few carbs. End of story. And you can do that without any recipes, without any expensive ingredients and without lots of money.

What is nowhere near as expensive as a private chef or elite produce is simply lowering carbs and sticking to the green list. And that is what low-carb is about. If you can just eat of the green list, you are doing low-carb (hint – low-carb also doesn’t mean ‘high-fat’ but we will save that one for later)

So, Suzanne, we understand and share your concerns in a big way. But you don’t need all that fancy stuff to lower your carbs.

Low-carb is expensive = Myth

Reference: Jonno Proudfoot, app.realmealrevolution.com

Cook something – Greek Pork Chops

Quantities given are for 2 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 x 250g pork loin chops (skin on)
  • ¹⁄₂ handful fresh oregano (stemmed)
  • ¹⁄₂ handful fresh mint (stemmed)
  • ¹⁄₂ sprig fresh rosemary (stemmed)
  • ¹⁄₂ clove garlic
  • ¹⁄₄ cup olive oil
  • 20 ml lemon juice (zest and juice of 1 lemon)
  • ¹⁄₄ tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper

Method

  1. Turn your oven to the highest temperature, and put it on the grill setting.
  2. Lie the chops down on a cutting board and use your knife (and your body weight) to cut through the fat and rind at 2cm intervals.
  3. Blitz everything else in a small jug with a stick blender and pour over the chops in a small dish, then leave them to marinate for an hour or so.
  4. Get a large ovenproof frying pan up to a medium high heat.
  5. Scrape the chops of any marinade and stack them together to make a reconstructed loin.
  6. Now, hold the ‘loin’ together with your tongs and place it fat side down in the pan to crisp the fat up. This should take about 5 minutes.
  7. Then, spread out the chops and fry them on each side for 4 minutes, turning them only once.
  8. To finish them off, pour the leftover marinade over them and pop them under the grill for another 3 or 4 minutes.

Reference:

https://app.realmealrevolution.com

Cook something – Classic Slaw

These quantities are for four servings.

Ingredients

  • ¹⁄₄ head white cabbage (shredded)
  • ¹⁄₄ medium head red cabbage (shredded)
  • 1 medium carrot (peeled and grated)
  • ¹⁄₄ medium red onion (thinly sliced)
  • ¹⁄₂ cup sour cream
  • 250 ml Banting mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 pinch salt and black pepper

Method

  1. Make the dressing first by whisk together the sour cream, mayonnaise, vinegar and mustard in a small bowl
  2. In another bowl mix the cabbages, carrot and red onion.
  3. Pour the dressing and a liberally seasoning of salt and pepper over the veg and get your hands in there to give it a proper mix.
  4. Leave it in the fridge for about an hour to infuse before serving.

Reference:

https://app.realmealrevolution.com

Cook something – Quick Sticks Doner

Quantities given are for 2 servings

Ingredients

  • 300 g deboned lamb shoulder (sliced into 2mm slithers)
  • ¹⁄₂ tbsp fresh oregano (chopped)
  • ¹⁄₂ tbsp fresh thyme (chopped)
  • ¹⁄₂ tbsp sumac
  • ¹⁄₄ medium red onion (peeled and cut into chunks)
  • ¹⁄₄ cup double thick yoghurt
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • ¹⁄₂ tsp salt
  • ¹⁄₄ tsp pepper

Method

  1. For this recipe you will need 2 large, thick bamboo skewers.
  2. Place the oregano, thyme, sumac, onion, yoghurt, oil, saltand pepper in a food processor and whizz them into a smooth paste.
  3. Cover the lamb slices in the paste and mix it well before leaving them in the fridge for an hour or two to infuse.
  4. While the lamb is marinating, fire up your BBQ (you can do this on a griddle pan or hot pan too).
  5. Skewer the lamb onto the skewers, packing each piece as tightly as possible.
  6. Place the skewers on the hottest part of the fire to get as much char action as possible. Five minutes a side should do it.
  7. If you want them cooked all the way through, pop them in the oven at 200 for another 5 – 10 minutes after direct grilling, or put them to the side of the hot coals and leave them in the Weber for 10 minutes with the lid on.
  8. To check how pink they are, use your fingers or the tongs to pull the meat slices apart. You should be able to see all the way to the skewer.
  9. When they’ve reached your desired ‘doneness’ remove them from the heat, stand the skewers upright with one hand and use a knife in the other hand to carve the skewers like a Turkish pro. People will dig it.

Reference:

https://app.realmealrevolution.com

Cook something – Banging mustard bangers

Quantities are for 1 serving.

Ingredients

  • 1¹⁄₂ whole bangers (ask your butcher for ‘no cereal’)
  • ¹⁄₄ tbsp butter
  • 1¹⁄₂ thick leeks (washed and cut into chunks)
  • ¹⁄₂ tbsp hot english mustard
  • ¹⁄₄ cup white wine
  • ¹⁄₄ cup cream
  • ¹⁄₄ sprig thyme
  • ¹⁄₄ pinch salt and pepper

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 220°C and pop the grill setting on.
  2. Get the butter up to a medium heat in a medium sized ovenproof pan and add the leeks to saute.
  3. When the leeks are caramelised, add the mustard, thymeand the wine and reduce it by half while stirring
  4. Once the wine is reduced, add the cream and bring it to the boil. Reduce the sauce by a third, then remove it from the heat.
  5. Arrange the bangers, evenly spaced, in a tray and pop them in the oven until they are dark brown on top. Then flip them over and grill them until they are brown on the other side. Probably 5 minutes a side.
  6. Once they are brown on both sides, add them (juices and all) into the pan and bring the pan back up to a gentle simmer for the sausages to cook through in the sauce. (1 or 2 minutes)
  7. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.

Cook Something – One pan chicken and mushroom stew

“Another winning recipe. Delicious sauce and tender chicken which the family loved. Simple to prepare and great that only one dish was needed!”

Bridget Gernandt

The quantities given are for 1 serving.

Ingredients

  • 1 large chicken breasts (bone in, skin on)
  • ¹⁄₂ tbsp butter
  • ¹⁄₂ tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ¹⁄₄ medium shallot (finely sliced)
  • ¹⁄₄ tsp fresh thyme leaves (chopped)
  • ¹⁄₄ tbsp garlic (minced)
  • 60 g button mushrooms (quartered)
  • ¹⁄₄ cup white wine
  • ¹⁄₄ cup chicken broth (or stock)
  • 0 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 0 cup cream
  • ¹⁄₄ handful fresh parsley (roughly chopped)
  • ¹⁄₄ pinch salt and black pepper

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and season the chicken with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat half the olive oil in a large pan and add the chicken breasts, turning them every couple minutes, until golden brown on each side, then set them aside.
  3. Add the onion and thyme and saute until the onions are softened.
  4. Add the garlic and stir it around for a minute, then add the mushrooms and cook them for 5 minutes, until they are soft.
  5. Pour in the wine and reduce it by half, then add the stock and the chilli flakes and reduce the whole sauce by half again.
  6. Now, add the cream, bring it to the boil and add the chicken pieces back in and pop the pan in the oven for 15 minutes.
  7. Remove it from the oven, season it to taste with salt and pepper and mix through the chopped parsley before

Reference:

realmealrevolution.com

Cook Something – Saag Paneer

Serves two and takes 25 minutes to prepare.

Ingredients

  • 150 g spinach (chopped)
  • 60 g paneer (cut into 1.5cm cubes)
  • ¹⁄₂ tsp tumeric
  • ¹⁄₄ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ¹⁄₄ tsp salt
  • 2¹⁄₂ tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ¹⁄₂ medium onion (finely chopped)
  • ¹⁄₂ tbsp ginger (minced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • ¹⁄₂ whole green chilli (finely chopped)
  • ¹⁄₄ tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • ¹⁄₂ tsp ground cumin
  • ¹⁄₄ cup plain yoghurt
  • ¹⁄₂ pinch salt and pepper

Method

  1. In a large pan, get the olive oil up to a medium heat and add the onions, gingergarlic and chilli and saute for 10 minutes until well caramelised.
  2. Now, add the garam masala, coriander and cumin and cook for about 5 minutes.
  3. Then, add the spinach and stir well, tossing to coat the leaves in the spices
  4. Once mixed, add half a cup of water and cook uncovered until the water has completely reduced.
  5. Remove the mix from the heat and stir in the yogurt, 1 tbsp at a time.
  6. Finally, add in the paneer, season to taste with salt and pepper and mix gently on a low heat until serving. If it gets too hot, the yoghurt will split so be careful.

Reference:

Real Meal Revolution