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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Holiday Buffet: Food Safety Tips!

The countdown to Thanksgiving is now hours, not days. Here for a quick refresher I share the basics of a safe holiday party food buffet as instructed by USDA Food Safety and Instruction Service. These are the highlights, link to the full article here: Buffet Food Safety.

Holiday or Party Buffets

A popular way to celebrate holidays or any party occasion is to invite friends and family to a buffet. However, this type of food service where foods are left out for long periods leave the door open for uninvited guests — bacteria that cause foodborne illness. Festive times for giving and sharing should not include sharing foodborne illness. Here are some tips from the USDA's Meat and Poultry Hotline to help you have a SAFE holiday party. 
Safe Food Handling
Always wash your hands before and after handling food. Keep your kitchen, dishes and utensils clean also. Always serve food on clean plates — not those previously holding raw meat and poultry. Otherwise, bacteria which may have been present in raw meat juices can cross contaminate the food to be served.

Cook Thoroughly
If you are cooking foods ahead of time for your party, be sure to cook foods thoroughly to safe minimum internal temperatures.
  • Cook all raw beef, pork, lamb and veal steaks, chops, and roasts to a minimum internal temperature of 145 °F as measured with a food thermometer before removing meat from the heat source. For safety and quality, allow meat to rest for at least three minutes before carving or consuming. For reasons of personal preference, consumers may choose to cook meat to higher temperatures.
  • Cook all raw ground beef, pork, lamb, and veal to an internal temperature of 160 °F as measured with a food thermometer.
  • Cook all poultry to a safe minimum internal temperature of 165 °F as measured with a food thermometer.
Use Shallow Containers
Divide cooked foods into shallow containers to store in the refrigerator or freezer until serving. This encourages rapid, even cooling. Reheat hot foods to 165 °F. Arrange and serve food on several small platters rather than on one large platter. Keep the rest of the food hot in the oven (set at 200-250 °F) or cold in the refrigerator until serving time. This way foods will be held at a safe temperature for a longer period of time. REPLACE empty platters rather than adding fresh food to a dish that already had food in it. Many people's hands may have been taking food from the dish, which has also been sitting out at room temperature.

The Two-Hour Rule
Foods should not sit at room temperature for more than two hours. Keep track of how long foods have been sitting on the buffet table and discard anything there two hours or more.
Keep Hot Foods HOT And Cold Foods COLD
Hot foods should be held at 140 °F or warmer. On the buffet table you can keep hot foods hot with chafing dishes, slow cookers, and warming trays. Cold foods should be held at 40 °F or colder. Keep foods cold by nesting dishes in bowls of ice. Otherwise, use small serving trays and replace them.

Foodborne Bacteria
Bacteria are everywhere but a few types especially like to crash parties. Staphylococcus aureus, Clostridium perfringens and Listeria monocytogenes frequent people's hands and steam tables. And unlike microorganisms that cause food to spoil, harmful or pathogenic bacteria cannot be smelled or tasted. Prevention is safe food handling.

If illness occurs, however, contact a health professional and describe the symptoms.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Big Thaw: Safe Turkey Thawing

The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

"You know what Disneyland is known for? The Big Turkey Leg. People walk around with enormous deep-fried turkey legs. Like little kids, three-year-old kids eating these five-pound turkey legs."  Steve Carell
(This is my niece, Abby, when she was about 5 years old and joined us for Thanksgiving. This little sweetie was thrilled to have a whole turkey leg all to herself! She's a teenager now and will probably faint knowing I posted this image of her - - but it's my favorite! Love ya, Abby!)

Turkey Basics: Safe Thawing

This is the most current safety information when thawing poultry provided by the United States Department of Agriculture.  You will find terrific information at USDA Food Safety Education online.  Follow this link to get information on Turkey Preparation and Safe Handling.

"The Big Thaw"
Turkeys must be kept at a safe temperature during "the big thaw." While frozen, a turkey is safe indefinitely. However, as soon as it begins to thaw, any bacteria that may have been present before freezing can begin to grow again.
A package of frozen meat or poultry left thawing on the counter more than 2 hours is not at a safe temperature. Even though the center of the package may still be frozen, the outer layer of the food is in the "Danger Zone" between 40 and 140 °F — at a temperature where foodborne bacteria multiply rapidly.
There are three safe ways to thaw food: in the refrigerator, in cold water, and in the microwave oven.

Safe Methods for Thawing
Immediately after grocery store checkout, take the frozen turkey home and store it in the freezer.
Frozen turkeys should not be left on the back porch, in the car trunk, in the basement, or any place else where temperatures cannot be constantly monitored.

Refrigerator Thawing
When thawing a turkey in the refrigerator:

    Plan ahead: allow approximately 24 hours for each 4 to 5 pounds in a refrigerator set at 40 °F or below.
    Place the turkey in a container to prevent the juices from dripping on other foods.

Refrigerator Thawing Times
Whole turkey:
    4 to 12 pounds — 1 to 3 days
    12 to 16 pounds — 3 to 4 days
    16 to 20 pounds — 4 to 5 days
    20 to 24 pounds —5 to 6 days
A thawed turkey can remain in the refrigerator for 1 or 2 days before cooking. Foods thawed in the refrigerator can be refrozen without cooking but there may be some loss of quality.

Cold Water Thawing
Allow about 30 minutes per pound.
First be sure the turkey is in a leak-proof plastic bag to prevent cross-contamination and to prevent the turkey from absorbing water, resulting in a watery product.
Submerge the wrapped turkey in cold tap water. Change the water every 30 minutes until the turkey is thawed. Cook the turkey immediately after it is thawed.

Cold Water Thawing Times
    4 to 12 pounds — 2 to 6 hours
    12 to 16 pounds — 6 to 8 hours
    16 to 20 pounds — 8 to 10 hours
    20 to 24 pounds — 10 to 12 hours

A turkey thawed by the cold water method should be cooked immediately. After cooking, meat from the turkey can be refrozen.

Microwave Thawing
Follow the microwave oven manufacturer's instruction when defrosting a turkey. Plan to cook it immediately after thawing because some areas of the food may become warm and begin to cook during microwaving. Holding partially cooked food is not recommended because any bacteria present wouldn't have been destroyed.

A turkey thawed in the microwave must be cooked immediately.

Cooking with Kaye: Thanksgiving Recipes

Cooking with Kaye Newsletter:
Thanksgiving Recipes
View in our online Archive

"I hope this message finds you well and excited about pursuing a healthier way of life with weight loss surgery. Thank you for taking time to join me here: I know your Inbox is as full as mine with many things asking for your time and attention.

With Thanksgiving upon us this week, I share some recipe classics and few new favorites that I hope will find a place on your table. Each year about this time we get dozens of requests for our classic recipe, Creamy Butternut Squash Bake. It's included here along with a new take on the old favorite green bean casserole. And I just know you are going to love my Jasmine Rice with Pomegranate and Scallions. I cannot get enough of this fresh aromatic side dish. We've also include some great hints and tips for navigating the feasting days of this season - I hope you find them useful and supportive of your weight management goals. Above all else, enjoy the day and the gratitude that is Thanksgiving.
Featured Recipes:
Moist Tender Traditional Turkey
Article: Holiday Grazing
Jasmine Rice with Pomegranate & Scallions
Creamy Butternut Squash Bake
Green Beans with Turkey & Bacon
Link to the Newsletter

Quick read to help you stay on track during the holidays:  The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Turkey is good for Weight Loss! Eat Up!!!

Great hints for navigating the holidays with WLS:
The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

“TURKEY, n. A large bird whose flesh when eaten on certain religious anniversaries has the peculiar property of attesting piety and gratitude. Incidentally, it is pretty good eating.”
Ambrose Bierce, ‘The Devil's Dictionary’ (1911)

Are you looking forward to Thanksgiving turkey and days of leftovers? Did you know turkey is one of the best animal proteins WLS patients can include in their diet in support of weight loss and weight maintenance? Next week when you stare down the big bird consider these things:

3 Ounces of Roast Turkey (mix of light & dark meat) Contains:
  • 145 Calories
  • 25 grams protein
  • 4.2 grams fat
  • 23% daily value of Niacin
  • 20% daily value Vitamin B6
  • 17% daily value zinc
  • 11% daily value iron

  • I know there are tons of “disguise your leftover turkey” recipes out there. But you know, in a sentimental moment I’m willing to slice off three ounces from the T-Day carcass, enjoy it plain and simple paying homage big bird! “Thank you turkey, for making me a lean-mean-healthy machine!”

    Enjoy the big bird - it's good for you!

    Nutrition 101:

    Niacin: Helps maintain healthy functions of the nervous system, digestive system and skin.

    Vitamin B6: Aids in the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and proteins to produce vital energy for the body.

    Zinc: An essential mineral to human nutrition and body processes involved with physical and mental development and protection. Zinc is found in every cell in the body and involved in the synthesis of protein and the action of many enzymes.

    Iron: a mineral that aids in the formation of red corpuscles and is a necessary component of hemoglobin, the oxygen carrier in the blood, and is also important for energy utilization. 
    Do you have questions about what kind of turkey to buy? I learned new things on today's Blog:
    Turkey Tips Step 1: Shopping for Your Feast
    by Chris Bernstein, Food Safety Education Staff, Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA

    "The first step to hosting a safe holiday feast is choosing your bird. Picking out the perfect turkey doesn’t mean just choosing the plumpest one in your grocery store. To find the perfect turkey for you and your guests, read the labels." Link to Blog

    Need WLS Recipes for the Holidays? Check-out Cooking with Kaye

    "Are you in search of terrific seasonal recipes that you can enjoy as a WLS patient and your family will love too? Look no further than the 5-Star rated Cooking with Kaye by Kaye Bailey. Choose from over 130 recipes and methods to create masterful dishes the whole family will enjoy without asking 'Do we have to eat your diet food?'  Be a 5-Star cook this holiday season and get in the kitchen Cooking with Kaye!"  ~ Alyce Pittaway
    "Everything that has Kaye's name on it is AWESOME............"
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars November 9, 2014
    By C.G.

    Cooking with Kaye on Amazon Sale $22.95
    Kaye Bailey's 5-Star customer rated cookbook Published Nov. 20, 2012. Written for the weight loss surgery patient and the people they cook for, this hard-back comb bound cookbook features 134 all new recipes and detailed techniques to take you beyond the meal to create recipes you and your family will love. Must have for any WLS household. Introducing Kaye's new "Pace of Preparation" to identify recipes that meet your time schedule and serve your dietary needs. Meals for the blended household (WLS and non-WLS eaters), couples, singles, all of us. Recipe categories include soups, salads, crunchy protein, savory skillet meals, oven baking and roasting, braising and slow cooking. Enjoy something delicious today: get Cooking with Kaye. Cooking with Kaye is suitable for all bariatric procedures including gastric bypass, adjustable gastric banding, gastric sleeve and others.

    Learn More: Cooking with Kaye Methods to Meals: Protein First Recipes You Will Love

    Customer Reviews: From Kindle Edition:

    Cooking with Kaye: Methods to Meals on Kindle

    5.0 out of 5 stars A must have! May 19, 2014
    By K.G.
    "This book is a must have for anyone that has undergone weight loss surgery. Not only does it have wonderful healthy recipes, but it explains in detail a lot of things that we need to know. The author Kate Bailey is a true advocate for those of us that have undergone weight loss surgery."
    5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you Kaye Bailey! September 5, 2014
    By Tammy
    "Very tasty low carb and high in protein meal"

    From Cooking with Kaye page 94
    Rack-Roasted Wings to Fly For
    Freeway Chef, one step preparation, crowd friendly, no deep-frying
    When a guest declared “these wings are to die for” I had to play on those words naming them my Wings to Fly For. They are lighter that the traditional wings served at pubs and they are very good. While there is no coating step to this recipe they are baked using the rack-roasting method which produces a crisp skin and golden finish.

    2 tablespoons olive oil
    ½ teaspoon salt
    ½ teaspoon pepper
    1 tablespoon all-purpose seasoning blend
    hot sauce
    16 to 20 chicken wing pieces (wing drumettes and flat wing tips) thawed
    1 tablespoon white vinegar

    Directions: Thaw wings if frozen. Place wings in a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil; add salt, pepper, seasoning blend, and a few dashes of hot sauce. Toss well making certain oil and seasoning is evenly distributed, let marinate at room temperature 20 to 30 minutes, tossing one more time. Ten minutes before cooking position oven rack in middle of oven and preheat to 425°F. Cover a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil, shiny side up, and place baking rack on top; coat with cooking spray. Douse wings with white vinegar and toss one more time; arrange on prepared baking rack and transfer to oven. Bake for 25 minutes; reduce oven temperature to 350°F and bake 10 more minutes. Serve warm, with dipping sauce of choice, page 96.

    Nutrition: Each 4 wing serving provides 327 calories, 26 grams protein, 23 grams fat, 0 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams dietary fiber.

    Try This: Frozen chicken wings are affordable and easy to keep on hand. Sold in large packages they are labeled ready-to-eat and include an equal portion of ice glazed first and second wing sections. Remove the amount needed for a meal counting 4 per person and thaw as directed.

    Saturday, November 15, 2014

    Not doing anything today? Clean the Fridge!

    Quick before the Holidays, give the 5DPT a whirl and avoid Holiday weight gain:
    The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

    Food Safety:
    In the days and weeks leading up to the Winter high holidays we at the LivingAfterWLS Blog will be covering several food safety topics to keep you and those around your table healthy and well. After WLS it seems we become particularly sensitive to food illnesses so knowing how to prevent food borne illness and food contamination becomes paramount to our well being. I hope you will enjoy these features and take advantages of the many reliable resources we share here. Earlier this week we share a cool infographic and information for a safe and healthy Thanksgiving: Thanksgiving Food Safety

    Today is a great time to continue the conversation: 
    It is National Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day! 
    Is your refrigerator giving you the stink eye?
    Well - I'm getting the big ol' stink eye from the kitchen fridge and the basement fridge (better known around here as the "Island of Misfit Food!")  Lucky for me today is National Clean Out your Refrigerator Day! Yup! Who knew we had such a holiday?  Here's what I learned about it from the ever-so-informative website: Days of the Year
    When : Always November 15th
    Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day is today.

    "What's that in the back of the refrigerator!? I don't want to find out. Don't open it...... the odor may overwhelm you!!! Hold your breath, scrunch your nose if you must, and get to the task.
    Everything in your refrigerator was once a fresh, healthy food, ready for your consumption. It may have been a tasty leftover, intended for later enjoyment. Unfortunately, over the course of weeks or more, things get pushed to the back of the refrigerator and slowly transform into something impossible to identify. 

    We've all run across items in the refrigerator that once were tasty food, But, now, they are some dried out, mold covered nasty, that you remove and dispose of at arms length. 

    Who wins the prize for the worst refrigerator surprises? Most often, it's workplace refrigerators.

    Use this day to clean out your refrigerator, top to bottom. When it comes to food safety, we fall back to the old saying  When in doubt, throw it out!"

    Origin of Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day: We found references suggesting that Whirlpool Home Appliances was promoting Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day. However, we went to their website and performed a search of it. They make no mention of this day. 

    Common speculation is that this day was created just in advance of Thanksgiving, to allow room for holiday leftovers. 

    And here is a little refresher from the FDA on the good and proper method for going from stink to sweet as we mark this auspicious national holiday. Follow the link to the FDA for a print version to add to your Kitchen 411 Binder.

    Food Safety: Removing Odors from Refrigerators and Freezers

                                     FDA Fact Sheet: Refrigerators and Freezers
    Refrigerators and freezers are two of the most important pieces of equipment in the kitchen for keeping food safe. We are instantly reminded of their importance when the power goes off, flooding occurs, or the unit fails, causing food to become unsafe and spoil. The odors that develop when food spoils can be difficult to remove. Use this information to learn how to remove odors from units or how to safely discard an affected unit.
    To Remove Odors from Refrigerators and Freezers
    If food has spoiled in a refrigerator or freezer and odors from the food remain, they may be difficult to remove. The following procedures may help but may have to be repeated several times.

    • Dispose of any spoiled or questionable food.
    • Remove shelves, crispers, and ice trays. Wash them thoroughly with hot water and detergent. Then rinse with a sanitizing solution (1 tablespoon unscented, liquid chlorine bleach per gallon of water).
    • Wash the interior of the refrigerator and freezer, including the door and gasket, with hot water and baking soda. Rinse with sanitizing solution as above.
    • Leave the door open for about 15 minutes to allow free air circulation.
    If odors remain, try any or all of the following:
    • Wipe inside of unit with equal parts vinegar and water. Vinegar provides acid which destroys mildew.
    • Leave the door open and allow to air out for several days.
    • Stuff both the refrigerator and freezer with rolled newspapers. Close the door and leave for several days. Remove paper and clean with vinegar and water.
    • Sprinkle fresh coffee grounds or baking soda loosely in a large, shallow container in the bottom of the refrigerator and freezer.
    • Place a cotton swab soaked with vanilla inside the refrigerator and freezer. Close door for 24 hours. Check for odors.
    • Use a commercial product available at hardware and housewares stores. Follow the manufacturer's instructions.
    If Odors Cannot Be Removed
    If odors cannot be removed, then the refrigerator or freezer may need to be discarded. If you need to discard the refrigerator or freezer, discard it in a safe manner:

    • "Childproof" old refrigerators or freezers so children do not get trapped inside. The surest way is to take the door off.
    • If the door will not come off, chain and padlock the door permanently and close tightly, or remove or disable the latch completely so the door will no longer lock when closed.
    It is unlawful in many jurisdictions to discard old refrigerators or freezers without first removing the door. Depending on where you live, your appliance will be picked up by your solid waste provider, recyclers, a retailer (if you buy a new unit), or program sponsored by local or regional utilities.
    Is this food still good?
    Do you find yourself asking, "I wonder if this food item is still good?" or "How long will this keep in the refrigerator or freezer?" Check out this chart from FoodSafety, the USDA consumer resource site:
    Storage times for the Refrigerator and Freezer

    Friday, November 14, 2014

    Protein Breakfasts to Celebrate World Diabetes Day

    Excellent eBook resource: All 5 Day Pouch Test Recipes including Breakfasts
    The 5 Day Pouch Test: Complete Recipe Collection

    Today is World Diabetes Day - A dedicated day on which international attention is given to raise awareness about diabetes which affects almost 400 million people worldwide and contributes to 5 million deaths annually. This year's initiative promotes the benefits of starting the day with a healthy breakfast to reduce the risks of diabetes.

    Follow me on Twitter @LivingAfterWLS and check out the many tweets about #WDD

    Weight loss surgery patients who follow the high protein diet prescribed by their bariatric centers are familiar with the benefits that come from starting the day with protein. I've gathered some of the high protein breakfast recipes we've shared here on the blog over the years for your enjoyment. Celebrate World Diabetes Day by committing to starting the day off right with a great serving of protein! Refresher: Protein First but how much?

    Learn more about World Diabetes Day

    Microwave Coffee Cup Scramble

    From Incredible Egg

    For a quick and easy breakfast in less than 3 minutes, try this microwave egg scramble. Just add your favorite toppings & take it to go!

    2 EGGS
    2 Tbsp. milk
    2 Tbsp. shredded Cheddar cheese
    Salt and pepper

    COAT 12-oz. microwave-safe coffee mug with cooking spray. ADD eggs and milk; beat until blended. (Kaye's Note: Be certain to beat eggs well; reviews on the Incredible Egg site indicate not beating the eggs and breaking the yolk causes them to "explode" during cooking or after the first 45 seconds when stirring. And always hold hot foods away from your face when removing from microwave or other heat source!)

    MICROWAVE on HIGH 45 seconds; stir. MICROWAVE until eggs are almost set, 30 to 45 seconds longer.  TOP with cheese; season with salt and pepper. Enjoy warm!

    Makes one serving that is a good source of protein, vitamin D, choline, vitamin A, folate, calcium, and iron.  Nutrition: 215 calories, 13g fat (6g saturated, 2g polyunsaturated, 5g monounsaturated), 17g protein, 2g carbohydrate.

    More Fast and Easy Breakfasts from Incredible Egg

    Egg-Broccoli Breakfast Bake
    This is intended to be a side-dish for most people. But in our WLS world I think it is a perfect main dish. Protein, dairy and veggies. Not to mention delicious flavor. We added salt and pepper at the table, and my husband gave a few shakes of Tabasco sauce. Delicious recipe - and easy! Another good recipe reheated the following day. This may be used for breakfast on Days 4 and 5 of the 5 Day Pouch Test.

    Egg-Broccoli Breakfast Bake

    Egg Recipes in the LivingAfterWLS Kitchen

    The One-Pan Breakfast
    Here is a blueprint for a manly one-pan breakfast. Use it as your guideline for tossing together great food in snap to start the day off right.
    One-Pan Breakfast

    Mini Breakfast Pizzas
    I just found this great recipe from the American Egg Board: Mini Breakfast Pizzas. What a great way to start your day and what a healthy way to send the kids off to school.
    High Protein Energy Breakfast

    Eggs for Dinner: Ham and Egg Casserole 
    A wonderful dinner casserole that sneaks in some extra veggies but still very high in protein. Delicious fresh or reheated the following day.

    Recipe: Ham and Egg Casserole

    Think Oatmeal: Pumped Up Protein Oatmeal
    Long revered as a nutritional powerhouse, oatmeal is a great platform for adding whole grain to our diet because it lends itself to a variety ingredients and flavors that boost protein and enhance the eating experience.  In the recipe below, Egg-White Whipped Vanilla Oatmeal provided by Quaker Oats, we add 14 grams protein per serving by whipping and cooking egg whites right into the oatmeal. The meal is further protein fortified with a topping of Greek yogurt giving this filling meal a potential of 22 grams protein! Once the technique of adding egg white in the final cooking step is mastered we can experiment with all manner of toppings to please the taste buds and meet our WLS nutritional needs.
    Egg-White Whipped Vanilla Oatmeal

    Check out this post: Kaye's Top 5 Day-6 Recipes

    Thursday, November 13, 2014

    World Diabetes Day: Off to the right start

    Need help getting back to the basics of WLS?
    Instant Download: The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

    2014 World Diabetes Day Messages:
    One: Investing in a healthy breakfast will reduce the global burden of diabetes, and save billions in lost productivity and healthcare costs. 
    Two: Ensure access to an affordable and healthy breakfast is essential to reducing the global burden of diabetes.

    Source: World Diabetes Day
    Tomorrow, Friday November 14, 2014, marks World Diabetes Day on which international attention is given to raise awareness about diabetes which affects almost 400 million people worldwide and contributes to 5 million deaths annually.

    As people who have been surgically treated for the metabolic disorder obesity our lives are often affected by diabetes (most commonly type 2 diabetes) and we understand the impact of this disease on our health and daily well being. Weight loss surgery and the weight loss following the surgical intervention are known to reduce the condition of type 2 diabetes. We understand that an ongoing focused effort to follow a healthy diet is necessary to keep the condition in remission. Knowing this we are well served in giving our attention to World Diabetes Day.

    "World Diabetes Day takes place on 14 November every year," according to the International Diabetes Foundation (IDF).  World Diabetes Day was introduced by the IDF and the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1991. World Diabetes Day unites the global diabetes community to produce a powerful voice for diabetes awareness and advocacy, engaging individuals and communities to bring the diabetes epidemic into the public spotlight." Fifteen years later the United Nations joined IDF and WHO and officially recognized  ‘World Diabetes Day’ in 2006.

    Diabetes is a global pandemic that crosses national borders without regard to race, gender, or economic circumstance. It is estimated that 11 percent of all healthcare spending  across the globe goes to treating the preventable risk factors of type 2 diabetes. In fact, the majority of the costs related to diabetes are spent on treating complications which can affect the heart, eyes, kidneys, and feet. These are complications that can be prevented through early diagnosis and proper management of diabetes.

    The IDF maintains that one of the easiest ways to reduce the risks of diabetes is to start the day with a healthy breakfast. This means trading high energy low nutrient breakfast meals for healthier fare to start the day in a healthy balanced way that positively affects blood glucose levels and reduces the risks of diabetes. IDF believes starting the day with a healthy nutrient dense breakfast will make significant progress in reducing the risk factors that contribute to diabetes. Here are the details from IDF:

    • Over 70% of type 2 diabetes cases can be prevented or delayed by adopting healthier lifestyles, equivalent to up to 150 million cases by 2035.
    • Eating a healthy breakfast decreases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
    • A healthy diet containing leafy vegetables, fresh fruit, whole grains, lean meat, fish and nuts can help reduce a person's risk of type 2 diabetes and avoid complications in people with diabetes. 
    • Skipping breakfast is associated with weight gain, one of the main risk factors for type 2 diabetes. Overweight and obesity account for up to 80% of new cases of type 2 diabetes.
    • Reducing the prevalence of type 2 diabetes will result in an increased participation and productivity in the workforce, given that the greatest number of people with diabetes are between 40 and 59 years of age.

    After weight loss surgery we are instructed to avoid low-nutrient processed carbohydrates that are often the primary ingredient in manufactured breakfast cereals. A high protein breakfast, containing dairy protein including eggs, or animal protein including lean meats, poultry, fish, and shellfish, is the standard diet most commonly prescribed to patients of all currently practiced bariatric procedures. Adding fruits and vegetables is encouraged as one-third of nutrient intake. This diet is in keeping with the IDF suggestions for a healthy breakfast. And it is likely this contributes to lowered risk and symptoms of type 2 diabetes.

    For great tips in the fight against diabetes follow World Diabetes Day on Twitter: @WDD.

    International Diabetes Federation: Blue circle

    The blue circle is the universal symbol for diabetes. Until 2006, there was no global symbol for diabetes. The purpose of the symbol is to give diabetes a common identity. It aims to:
    • Support all existing efforts to raise awareness about diabetes
    • Inspire new activities, bring diabetes to the attention of the general public
    • Brand diabetes
    • Provide a means to show support for the fight against diabetes

    Wednesday, November 12, 2014

    Retro-graphic: Thanksgiving Food Safety is the gateway to food safety information provided by government agencies. “The federal government will enhance to better communicate information to the public and include an improved individual alert system allowing consumers to receive food safety information, such as notification of recalls. Agencies will also use social media to expand public communications.” is a terrific site provided and produced by the United States Department of Agriculture. You cannot beat it as a resource for the most current information and guidance in keeping food safe and preventing foodborne illness. Bookmark as your go-to resource for reliable advice in all your food preparation.

    Check out this retro-style infographic featuring Thanksgiving Food Safety Tips. Link Here for the full scale image on Flickr.

    Get ready for the holidays - do the 5DPT now!
    The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

    Why Use a Food Thermometer?

    Using a food thermometer is the only reliable way to ensure safety and to determine desired "doneness" of meat, poultry, and egg products. To be safe, these foods must be cooked to a safe minimum internal temperature to destroy any harmful microorganisms that may be in the food. "Doneness" refers to when a food is cooked to a desired state and indicates the sensory aspects of foods such as texture, appearance, and juiciness. Unlike the temperatures required for safety, these sensory aspects are subjective. (USDA Food Safety)

    Thanksgiving: A Season of Service

    The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

    "Gathering is more about sharing. The individual traditions that are created add to the larger tradition. There is a feeling of participation in the greater human experience."
    ~ John Sherry, University of Notre Dame

    Thanksgiving is, of course, a celebration of harvest, a symbol of friendship and a time for families to come together. Unless you can't stand your family. Be that as it may, the holiday has an interesting history, one that has now developed into a three-state dispute over which one hosted the first Thanksgiving. The feast's origins are commonly traced to the Pilgrim gathering at Plymouth, Massachusetts, in 1621. But interestingly, some sources point to similar feasts held in places like Virginia or even Spanish Florida.

    A couple of centuries later, in addition to family feasts, Thanksgiving is celebrated with parades (New York City, Detroit), cultural festivals (Milwaukee, New Mexico) and "Turkey Trot" road races (Nevada, Seattle). It's also recognized as the start of the Winter holiday season, so there are plenty of light shows (Oklahoma, Phoenix), homages to Christmas (Mississippi, North Dakota) and Black Friday sales (Iowa, Pennsylvania).

    More recently this is the season of serving our fellow man. VolunteerMatch.Org is a great repository of events across the country that provide opportunities during the holidays and all year to volunteer and serve others.  Link: United States Thanksgiving Volunteer Opportunities

    Click on the link to learn more about how and where you can volunteer this holiday -- and make Thanksgiving better for someone else. Also, learn more about what other fun activities are happening in your area. (Note: Most organizations prefer that you call in advance to officially register as a volunteer rather than just showing up.)

    Direct Link: Thanksgiving Volunteer Opportunities

    Tuesday, November 11, 2014

    Dinner Tonight: Delicious Stuffed Peppers

    The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

    Previously published in our 5 Day Pouch Test Bulletin Nov. 2012. Link Here to read the bulletin in our newsletter online archive. This is what my family is having for dinner tonight! I can hardly wait, the cooking aroma is teasing my hunger button! I hope you will try this recipe and let me know what you think!

    Featured Recipe: Turkey Filled Colorful Peppers
    Turkey Filled Colorful Peppers
    peppersWith a Halloween Spin
    Find us on Pinterest  I saw stuffed peppers carved to look like Jack-O-Lanterns on Pinterest
    and it was such a clever presentation I just had to give it a try. I learned carving a pepper is much easier than carving a pumpkin, and gutting a pepper is much more pleasant than gutting a pumpkin. I used a paring knife to carve the peppers (red, orange, and yellow) before stuffing and then cooking following the recipe below.

    This recipe is from my book, "Cooking with Kaye: Methods to Meals" on page 171. The peppers are stuffed with lean ground turkey and vegetables then baked in the slow cooker. The recipe calls for a topping of shredded Monterey Jack Cheese. In the example above I substituted a mixture of equal parts crumbled crackers and grated Parmesan cheese.  I hope you'll give this a try - with or without a Jack-O-Lantern smile!

    Use for Days 4 or 5 of 5DPT or Day 6 anytime!

    Turkey Filled Colorful Peppers
    Freeway Chef, delectable aroma,
    low carbs, high nutrients, low calories

    Oven-baked stuffed peppers require the ground meat be cooked in a skillet before the peppers are stuffed and baked. Slow cooker stuffed peppers eliminate this step while producing a moist meaty Protein First meal.

    3 sweet bell peppers; assorted colors
    1 (20-ounce) package Jennie-O® Lean Ground Turkey Breast
    1 small onion, minced
    1 carrot, grated
    1 stalk celery, minced
    1½ teaspoons Mrs. Dash® Original Seasoning
    ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
    1 egg
    1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
    1 to 2 cups chicken broth, reduced sodium
    3 ounces shredded Monterey Jack

    Directions: Wash and dry bell peppers. Depending upon how peppers will fit in your slow cooker remove stems and cut vertically so each pepper half will rest on its side; or cut top off so peppers will rest upright. Remove seeds and membranes; set aside. In a medium mixing bowl gently mix the ground turkey, onion, carrot, celery, seasoning blend, ground pepper, egg, and tomato sauce. Spoon mixture evenly in peppers; arrange peppers in slow cooker; add enough chicken broth to fill bottom of cooker 1 to 2-inches deep. Cover; set cooker to low and cook 4 to 6 hours or high and cook 2 to 4 hours. About 30 minutes before serving check meat for doneness using an instant-read meat thermometer: temperature should be 160°F. If turkey is done top peppers with cheese; return cover and continue cooking 10 to 15 minutes until cheese is melted. Serve warm.

    Nutrition: Serves 6. Each serving provides 201 calories, 29 grams protein, 6 grams fat, 6 grams carbohydrate, 1 gram dietary fiber.

    Try This: Prepare 2 cups cooked white rice and serve with stuffed peppers.

    Cooking with Kaye: Methods to Meals Reprinted with permission (c) LivingAfterWLS 2012
    Cooking with Kaye: Methods to Meals
    Page 171

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    LivingAfterWLS Self-Assessment: Tool for your Success

    LivingAfterWLS Self-Assessment Worksheet Download

    "This worksheet should be used as a private tool with the intent to keep your eye on the goal. It is a contract with yourself; a contract of honor and self-respect because you deserve to treat yourself well and engage in appropriate long-term behaviors in pursuit of your healthiest life." ~Kaye Bailey


    For those who are struggling or have lost that early post-op vigor: I'd like you to give the LivingAfterWLS Self-Assessment a try. It is a simple two-page worksheet that allows you to recall your pre-surgery goals, evaluate where you are today, and make a plan for the next three months. We have been using it in the LAWLS communities since 2006 and it is highly valued as must-use tool for getting back on track and staying on track.

    LivingAfterWLS Self-Assessment

    LivingAfterWLS Free Downloads

    Another tool to help you get back on track: The 5 Day Pouch Test. Learn all about it in this quick-read affordable eBook exclusively on Amazon:
    The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

    In Appreciation of Those Who Served

    Veteran's Day 2014

    "We must remember, only the dead have seen the end of war."

    "We must remember, only the dead have seen the end of war," Dedicatory sign. Fort Douglas Cemetery, Salt Lake City Utah. I captured this image early morning 17 April 2014. The Fort Douglas Cemetery is the resting place of officers and men who died in the service of their country. They represent Civil War, Spanish American War, World War I, World War II, the Korean Conflict and the Vietnam Conflict. Also interred prisoners of war from WW1 & WW2.

    Monday, November 10, 2014

    Changing View: Obesity bias wanes in favor of new understanding

    New research suggests that the American public and healthcare professionals are less likely to blame obesity on bad personal choices in favor of understanding obesity as a complex medical condition and community problem. These findings, presented last week at the Obesity Society Annual Meeting in Boston, suggest the treatment and management of obesity is now seen as a disease that warrants serious, evidence-based medical care.
    "Obesity is one of the most complex, chronic medical conditions and successful treatment often requires the support and care of healthcare professionals. These trends are encouraging because they suggest a shift away from simplistic, biased views that focus on personal blame. The more that people recognize shared risks for obesity, the more likely they are to support evidence-based approaches to reducing obesity's impact."  ~Rebecca Puhl, PhD, Deputy Director at Yale University's Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity speaking on behalf of The Obesity Society.

    Credit: Image courtesy of Obesity Society
    Findings were shared last week in a report from Obesity Society. "Despite the high prevalence of obesity in the U.S. and worldwide, weight bias and stigma continue to complicate clinical and policy approaches to obesity treatment," said study author Ted Kyle, RPh, MBA, of ConscienHealth in Pittsburgh, PA. "The goal of our study was to measure any shifts that might affect or result from public policy changes."

    Kyle and his colleagues Diana Thomas, PhD, professor at Montclair State University, and Adam Tsai, MD, an obesity medicine expert at Kaiser Permanente of Colorado, conducted an online survey of a representative sample of 54,111 U.S. adults (POP) and 5,024 healthcare professionals (HCP), who were asked whether they viewed obesity primarily as a personal problem of bad choices, a community problem of bad food and inactivity, or a medical problem. Responses were collected in five different time periods: Feb 2013, Mar 2013, Aug 2013, and May 2014. The HCP sample included registered nurses, physicians, dietitians and nutritionists, and healthcare policy/management professionals. Researchers analyzed how demographic variables (age, gender, income, region, urban density) were associated with the changing views of the public and HCPs.

    "Our results show a significant shift in perceptions of obesity in 2014, with the percent of Americans seeing obesity as a community problem increasing as much as 13% and the percent of healthcare professionals increasing 18%," said Kyle. "Surprisingly, the healthcare professionals who view obesity primarily as a medical problem actually decreased between 2013 and 2014. This trend bears watching."

    Have you noticed a greater understanding of obesity and less bias in your daily interactions? Have you seen improved effort and understanding from your medical providers?

    Wednesday, November 05, 2014

    Healthy Eating Day: AHA Quick Chicken Chili

    Today is the American Heart Association National Eating Healthy Day! As we discussed in yesterday's blog post, "It is an opportunity for all of us --with a vested interest in our health after weight loss surgery, and the health of those we care about who join us at the table-- to purposefully direct our attention to good eating and the benefits it brings. I love the idea of a day dedicated to wellness and eating healthy."
    Take the first step to making healthier food choices by taking part in the American Heart Association's National Eating Healthy Day on Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014. On this day, Americans are encouraged to commit to healthier eating.
    In browsing the American Heart Association's online Recipe Collection I found it interesting that many of their meals are family-affordable and can be prepared quickly using basic cooking skills. So often we hear eating healthy is expensive and time consuming. But it doesn't have to be. The recipes from AHA do not require crazy ingredients or multiple steps for preparation, but they are delicious and family friendly. This recipe caught my eye, I'm a big fan of chicken or turkey chili. Take a look at this recipe - I'm putting it on my menu tonight! For more recipes from AHA Link Here

    Quick Chicken Chili
    This Simple Cooking with Heart recipe is a yummy twist on traditional chili, switching in chicken for ground beef. It's easy to make in a hurry! Recipe shared by the American Heart Association.
    For more great heart healthy recipes from AHA Link Here

    non-stick cooking spray
    1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenderloins
    1 lb. ground white meat chicken or turkey
    1 medium onion
    1 medium bell pepper (any color)
    3 clove garlic
    1 tsp. jarred, minced garlic
    2 cup fat-free, low-sodium chicken broth
    1 16- oz. canned, fat-free, low-sodium chicken broth
    2 15.5- oz. canned, no-salt-added, or, low-sodium beans (mix or match pinto, red, kidney or navy)
    1/2 tsp. pepper
    1 tsp. cumin
    1/2 tsp. chili powder (optional)
    1 medium chopped jalapeƱo (optional if you like spicy chili)
    fresh cilantro (optional)
    1/2 cup low-fat, (or), fat-free sour cream (optional)

    1. Remove visible fat from chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces.
    2. Spray large pot with cooking spray. Add chicken, onion, garlic, chili powder (optional) or jalapeno (optional) cooking over medium-heat until chicken is no longer pink (about 7 minutes)
    3. Lightly mash the drained, rinsed beans with a fork.
    4. Add all remaining ingredients to chicken mixture and simmer on high for 10 minutes.
    5. Spoon chili into bowl and enjoy!

    Express Guide: Learn the 5DPT Now & Get on Track!

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    Learn the 5 Day Pouch Test and Have Your Questions Answered

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    5 Day Pouch Test Owner’s Express Study Guide eBook, available exclusively through Amazon Kindle. This quick study provides the basics of the 5 Day Pouch Test plan to get you back on track with your weight loss or weight maintenance goals with weight loss surgery. What’s in it: The Express Study Guide includes the plan summary broken down by day; 32 Frequently Asked Questions and Answers about the plan; and 10 sample recipes to get you started. Who it’s for: The 5 Day Pouch Test Express Study Guide is for those who want to learn a little more about the plan without investing in the manual; for people anxious to do the 5DPT and want a quick overview; for those who know the plan and have used it successfully who want a quick reference at their fingertips; people who want to succeed long term with their weight loss surgery tool.
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    Take your Kindle books with you
    The Kindle app is available for most major smartphones, tablets and computers. That means with our free Kindle reading apps, you can buy a Kindle book once, and read it on any device with the Kindle app installed*. You can also read that same Kindle book on a Kindle device if you own one.  Learn More

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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews:The 5 Day Pouch Test: Express Study Guide

    5.0 out of 5 stars Simply the Best September 24, 2014
    By Karen
    Kaye Bailey has done it again. This express guide is just what I needed with my busy life. It is short and to the point. It will be great to take my Kindle into the grocery store and shop for 5DOT items easily. The recipes look delicious too!

    5.0 out of 5 stars back on track September 27, 2014
    By Marion
    This is the encouragement that I needed to get back on track. The author answers your questions that you have to get started and to completed your 5 days with getting back on track.

    5.0 out of 5 stars simple, easy to follow plan October 12, 2014
    By Teri
    I desperately needed to get back on track after slipping into old habits and this plan made it easy to do! Thank you Kaye!

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    Tuesday, November 04, 2014

    Heart Healthy Pumpkin Spice Smoothie

    After weight loss surgery we find ourselves enjoying (or hating) protein shakes and smoothies as part of our high protein diet. Smoothie recipes are fairly common in magazines and on the Internet and many recipes are full of nutrients that support good health. To increase the protein content in a smoothie we can add a scoop or more of our favorite protein powder. In this recipe for Pumpkin Spice Smoothie shared by the American Heart Association one scoop of protein powder would add approximately 16 grams of protein to the 11 grams provided in the basic recipe. And doesn't this sound delicious with the fall pumpkins in full harvest right now?

    Pumpkin Spice Smoothie
    199 Calories
    106 mg Sodium
    $1.63 Per Serving

    This American Simple Cooking with Heart recipe is the taste of pumpkin pie in a glass, with fewer calories.

    1/2 cup canned pumpkin
    1/3 cup fat-free, plain yogurt
    1/3 cup skim milk
    2 Tbsp. rolled oats
    2 Tbsp. honey
    1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
    3-4 ice cubes

    1. Into a blender, add pumpkin, yogurt, milk, oats, honey, pumpkin pie spice, and ice cubes.
    2. Blend until smooth and frothy, about 1 minute. Pour into a glass and serve.

    Nutritional Analysis Per serving:
    199 Calories, 38g carbohydrate, 6g dietary fiber, 11g protein, 1.5 grams fat.

    Additional Tips: 

    Cooking Tip: Keeping the can of pumpkin in the fridge before using isn’t necessary, but helps make a colder smoothie.

    Keep it Healthy: Make sure to buy 100% pure pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling or mix, which looks similar but can have added sugar.

    Tip: Plain nonfat Greek yogurt, which has more of a tangy taste as well as more protein, can be substituted for the light plain yogurt.

    Kaye's Tips: 

    Add a scoop of vanilla protein powder to ingredients and blend well.

    Substitute almond milk or soy milk for the skim milk, this will lower the carbohydrates and sugar that are in dairy milk in the form of lactose.

    Add honey to taste (or artificial sweetener if preferred) after the smoothie is blended, putting in the smallest amount to achieve your preferred sweetness.

    Freeze left-over pumpkin puree in 1-tablespoon cubes and add frozen to smoothie for an extra cold and thick beverage.

    For more heart healthy recipes visit: American Simple Cooking with Heart

    It's all about learning: National Eating Healthy Day

    Tomorrow marks the American Heart Association's National Eating Healthy Day. It is an opportunity for all of us --with a vested interest in our health after weight loss surgery, and the health of those we care about who join us at the table-- to purposefully direct our attention to good eating and the benefits it brings. I love the idea of a day dedicated to wellness and eating healthy.

     There are few things in our life over which we have as much control as we have over our diet. Certainly eating healthy requires effort and planning and sometimes fixing a decent meal is disruptive and inconvenient. But like anything, the more we learn about the subject the easier it becomes. This learning process, to me, is the essence of National Eating Healthy Day. We don't have to get every meal nutritionally perfect. But we can make adjustments, a little at a time, to improve our menu one meal at a time and one day at a time.

    "On this day, Americans are encouraged to commit to healthier eating. Celebrating National Eating Healthy Day is fun and easy! We provide a complete toolkit of materials and how-to information for workplaces, schools, individuals and community organizations." AHA

    I found this article on the American Heart Association's website to be most helpful in presenting small changes that make a big difference to our health in the long run. I hope you find it useful as well. Be sure to visit the American Heart Association Getting Healthy web resource. It is a remarkable repository of information to support a healthy life.

    Healthy Eating Habits Start at Home

    "Meals away from home account for at least half of the money Americans spend on food. But saving money – while eating healthier – is easier than you might think. The American Heart Association has developed healthy tips, recipes and guides to make it even easier to do both by preparing more meals at home. And what better time for your family to start making healthier food choices than March, which happens to be National Nutrition Month?

    “With busy, on-the-go lifestyles, many Americans have lost touch with their kitchens and thrown in the towel on eating healthy, which is key to prevention of heart disease and stroke,” said Dr. Rachel Johnson, Ph.D., MPH, R.D., Chairperson of the American Heart Association Nutrition Committee and Bickford Professor of Nutrition at the University of Vermont. “Eating at home can improve a family’s diet – and it’s easier on the pocketbook, too.”

    About one-third of Americans are overweight or obese, including nearly 13 million children. Childhood obesity has become a major health concern, causing health problems in children that previously weren’t seen until adulthood such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol. Parents are key to helping overcome this national epidemic.

    Healthy habits start at home,” Johnson said. “We want to help people establish a healthier way of life so they can be around to enjoy their families. Parents and grandparents can pass down a healthy legacy to their children and grandchildren – and we can help the next generation of Americans lead better, longer and healthier lives.”
    Here are some tips to help you and your family start eating healthier:
    • Enjoy meals together. When everyone sits down together to eat, there’s less chance of children eating the wrong foods or snacking too much.
    • Get kids involved in cooking and planning meals. Everyone develops good eating habits together and the quality time with the family will be an added bonus.
    • Eating healthier at home starts with the ingredients you use. Many favorite recipes can be made healthier by substituting ingredients.
    • When you use oils for cooking, baking or in dressings or spreads, choose healthier oils — which include canola, corn, olive, safflower, sesame, soybean and sunflower oils.
    • Limit added sugars in your family’s diet. Sugar-sweetened beverages are the largest source of added sugars for most of us, so reduce or cut out soda, sports drinks, energy drinks and fruit drinks as well as enhanced waters, sweetened teas and sugary coffee drinks. Drink more plain water instead.
    • Try to reduce the amount of sodium you eat. If using packaged foods, compare food labels, and choose the product with the least amount of sodium. Use herbs and spices to add flavor when cooking, instead of salt.
    • Eat more vegetables and fruits, whether fresh, frozen, dried or canned. Add them to dishes your family already loves and use them as healthier sides, snacks and desserts. If you choose canned, watch for added sodium and sugars.
    Thanks to the American Heart Association for providing this useful article.For more nutrition tips, healthy recipes and resources to help your family get healthier, please visit

    Healthy Eating & WLS
    Eating a traditional healthy diet after weight loss surgery is a challenging balancing act. We must follow the high protein eating guidelines in order to lose weight and sustain that weight loss. But to prevent culinary boredom and avoid nutritional gaps we need to include healthy complex carbohydrates and healthy fats in our meal plans. Knowing the basics is a great starting point for building sound nutrition that supports our weight loss surgery goals.  Keep reading here as we continue to provide valuable information that supports our health and well being.