Health Diary Week 10: Food, Exercise and a Positive Mind

Christmas Week Indulgences

Image: Mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

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Hi and welcome to another weekly instalment of what’s on my plate, health and nutrition updates and some positive smile-provoking experiences…

What’s New

…It’s Christmas time – so I didn’t concern myself with how much and what I ate this week. Therefore, this post will be a little different – I guess you could call it my Christmas Edition:

Mum & I commence the Christmas food prep!

Food and Nutrition

So, let’s have a look at what food was on my plate, the healthy and not so healthy choices and identify any tweaks I could make to improve my nutrition…

Christmas Midnight Buffet Feast:

My Mum and I began food prepping for the ‘post-Christmas Eve pub night midnight buffet feast’ a couple of days before Christmas (in my tipsy state I forgot to take a photo of this, but it was impressive!).

For the buffet we made my Nana’s curry puffs (chickpeas, spinach, potato and tomatoes), sausage rolls (with ready-made pastry), cashew ‘cheeses’ (chilli and paprika, lemon and black pepper) and coleslaw – all high fat![1].

Being constantly curious, I decided to compare the nutritional information of the pastry I used (Jus-rol gluten free [and vegan]) and its all-butter version. The gluten free had 62 calories and 7.4 grams saturated fat less and 2.9 grams more fibre[2] than its butter counterpart per 100 grams. Also, my cashew soft cheese contained only trace trans-fat and no cholesterol compared to spreadable cheese’s 0.9 grams trans-fat and 72 mg cholesterol[3]. This made me feel a bit better about my ‘fat binge’:

Our buffet feast prep. Top left: Nana’s curry puff filling (chickpeas, potatoes, spinach & tomato). Right: finished curry puffs. Bottom left: sausage rolls using Linda McCartney sausages. Bottom middle: cashew cheeses: chilli & paprika, lemon & black pepper. Bottom right: coleslaw.

Breakfast:

Christmas morning, we started with fruit: papaya, mango, strawberries and lime – tasty and healthy. Boxing Day’s breakfast was smashed avocado with red onion, tomato and olives on seeded wholegrain toast. Most excitingly, I was treated again by @baldveganchef with a meal very much like smashed avocado, smoked salmon and runny egg on a bagel, but actually completely plant-based – genius and delicious!:

Breakfasts: Top: Christmas day fruit salad. Bottom left: Smashed avocado with tomato, red onion & olives. Bottom right: @baldveganchef’s vegan smashed avocado, ‘smoked salmon’ and ‘runny egg yolk’ on a bagel.

Christmas Dinner (Gluten-Free and Vegan):

Christmas dinner was awesome! We’d made Richard Church’s butternut squash wellington also containing spinach, walnuts, apricots & bechamel sauce. We used Waitrose vegan, gluten free cocktail sausages (seasonal edition) that we rolled in Quorn ‘ham’ slices. We made stuffing with a ready mix and added Linda McCartney sausages and various herbs. There were loads of different roasted veg (potatoes, carrots, parsnips, sweet potato and turnip), Winter mash (swede, carrot and turnip), spiced red cabbage and steamed Brussel sprouts with chestnuts. We easily hit our 5-a-day![4]. The rest of the week I ate various versions of Christmas dinner – I’ve had enough roasts now until next Winter!:

The Christmas dinner feast! Top left: Richard Church’s butternut squash wellington & ‘pigs-in-blankets’ (Waitrose cocktail sausages & Quorn ham slices). Right: Roasted veg – potatoes, carrots, parsnips, sweet potato & turnip. Bottom left: stuffing & Winter mash (swede, carrot & turnip). Bottom middle: steamed Brussel sprouts & chestnuts.  

Lunch, Pastry and Cheese:

Lunches were pretty much buffet-type foods, including variations of cheese and crackers, Applewood cheese & coleslaw sandwiches, curry puffs, sausage rolls, crisps, hummus, antipasti, tomatoes, pickled onions and chutneys. By the end of the week I felt like I had eaten my weight in pastry and cheese! I managed a mince pie early on Christmas day, but couldn’t face the Christmas pudding with Elmlea plant double cream until much later in the week. We still have a chocolate cheesecake in the freezer!:

Right: Buffet-type lunches (not enough salad!). Top right: Mince pie. Bottom right: Christmas pudding with Elmlea plant double cream.

Weight, BMI and Fat Results

So, I was pleasantly surprised by how little weight (only 0.8 lb) and fat (0.4%) I gained over the Christmas week. However, the challenge now is to avoid gaining anymore and start losing again. This could be difficult given the amount of self-control I’m going to need to resist eating too much of my Christmas chocolate haul!:

The Christmas chocolate & booze haul – uh oh!

Feeling Motivated:

But, I’m definitely feeling motivated to eat more healthily and exercise after this week’s indulgences – so bring on a healthy 2020!…

Image: 3D Animation Production Company, Pixabay

I hope you enjoyed this week’s ‘What’s on Watson’s Plate’. Please feel free to follow my bite-sized updates on Instagram or Facebook. See you next Wednesday for another catch up.

Week 11>>>
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References

1. British Heart Foundation, Ca. 2019. Fats explained [online]. Available from:  www.bhf.org.uk/informationsupport/support/healthy-living/healthy-eating/fats-explained.
2. Watson, K., 2019. Carbs: The good, the bad and the sometimes ‘farty’! [online]. Available from: https://whatsonwatsonsplate.wordpress.com/carbs-the-good-the-bad-and-the-sometimes-farty/.
3. Finglas, P. M., Roe, M. A., Pinchen, H. M., Berry, R., Church, S. M., Dodhia, S. K., Farron-Wilson, m. and Swan, G., 2015. McCance and Widowson’s the composition of foods, 7th summary edition. Cambridge: Royal Society of Chemistry.
4. National Health Service (NHS), 2018. Eat Well: Why 5 A Day? [online]. Available from: www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/why-5-a-day/.

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