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Archive for October, 2015

 ThinkThin Chocolate Raspberry bar on a halloween placemat 
Happy Halloween everyone! 
As you already know from previous posts, my current protein bar of choice is ThinkThin. They taste great, have ZERO sugar in them, and they are a hell of a lot cheaper than Quest Bars ($1.25 for ThinkThin, $2.50 for Quest, if you eat one a day, that’s about a $40 difference per month!).

So when I saw a new flavor at the grocery store, ThinkThin Chocolate Raspberry, I got excited and bought a bunch of them. 

Sadly, just like the caramel one, something is seriously off with the taste. It tastes like…chemicals. 

Damn, I was really looking forward to a new flavor. I guess I’ll stick with my usuals (Cookies and Cream, Chocolate Fudge, Chocolate Brownie, and Chocolate Espresso).

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Ok, so sometimes I have to get a little creative to maintain my diet, weight and blood sugar. It’s ok to laugh at these, I make fun of myself about them all the time. But you know what? They work:

  • Went to Valentine’s Day dinner with my boyfriend. They told us ahead of time that they were catering in fajitas. So, I took my own corn tortillas. Laugh all you want, but the two flour tortillas they were giving everyone equaled 300 calories and 50 g of carbohydrates. My three corn ones? 150 calories and 30 g of carbs. Plus, they taste better and I got more meat than everyone else. I didn’t need to eat from 7 pm that night until the next morning!
  • If I do allow myself a treat, such as a plain cake donut (one of my favorites!) I get one, immediately walk to the trash, and drop 1/2 of it in the trash. I know me too well, if it’s sitting there, I’ll eat it. But I won’t dig it out of the trash. Full plain cake donut, 210 calories, 22g of carbs. 1/2 of donut, 105 calories, 11 g of carbs.
  • If my friends are having a night of unhealthy food that I can’t have (ice cream night), I’ll still go, but I’ll take my own treat that I love and is somewhat equivalent (such as Cookies and Cream protein powder or a ThinkThin Cookies and Creme protein bar).
  • If sandwiches/wraps are provided for a meeting, I’ll take extra (no shame), dissect them, remove a lot of carbs and load all of the protein into one bun or wrap, and eat that.
  • Drive our admin assistant nuts by insisting that all of our work food comes with all the condiments on the side (see Stop pre-loading my food with condiments!).

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Recently, I was in Greece to check-out the sites and get in some much-needed relaxation.

Greek Yogurt is served over there, in some form, in breakfast (mostly in general yogurt format), lunch (Tzatziki sauce) and dinner (as a desert, with honey and chopped dried dates).  I have to say, the Greek Yogurt in Greece was WAY BETTER than what we have in the U.S. It was so rich and creamy.

Battle 1: Which Greek Yogurt, easily available in the U.S., is the closest to that in Greece?

This was a simple, easy battle. I walked into a typical Greek grocery store and looked at their yogurt section looking for any brands available in the U.S. Fage was the only one. In taste-testing the 0% and 2% versions of Fage, the 2% is the closest (still a touch too sour) to what we had in Greece. I’ve noticed that eating one of these for an afternoon snack keeps me full for hours, which is a miracle for me.

Battle 2: Lowest Added-Sugar Greek Yogurt

Milk naturally has sugar in it, about 7-8 grams naturally occur in an individual-size (7 oz.) Greek yogurt but that’s an ok amount, especially given the protein you are also getting at the same time. What’s not good, especially for hypoglycemics, but really everyone, is the ADDED sugar they put in them.

A sugar cube is 2.3 grams of sugar, so basically, for every 2 grams of additional sugar, you need to mentally picture another sugar cube.  Check out the sugar cube stacks for Yoplait yogurt as an example.

Obviously, plain Greek yogurt is going to have the least amount of added sugar (basically none), but most people want some flavor. What I’ve found is that the amount of sugar, even in just vanilla Greek yogurt, varies greatly depending on the brands. I had some fun at the grocery store and took photos of different brands and types, including one worst-case scenario. See the comments on each.

Baseline: Fage 2% no flavor is 7 oz. has 8 grams of lactose sugars and 20 grams of protein for 150 calories. This is without any added sugars (chocolate, honey, sugary granola, fruit, etc.). I recommend adding cinnamon vs. a sugar.


Yoplait Greek 100 Calorie Yogurt 4 pack vanilla 

Nutrition label for Yoplait 100 Greek Yogurt

Yes, it’s less calories and looks like a decent amount of sugar, but look at it closer; they messed with the serving size, it’s 5.23 ounces, so about 2 ounces less of yogurt. That explains why the sugars seem fine and the protein is low. I’m guessing this has about 1 sugar cube worth of sugar in it.

H-E-B Greek 100 Calories Vanilla Bean

My local store brand, also the cheapest.

H-E-B Greek 100 Calories Vanilla Bean

ALSO only 5.23 ounces, so much smaller. This has a lot less protein, but look at the sugar! There are at least 2 sugar cubs in this. Also, there are a lot of black dots in this yogurt, I’m thinking a lot of those aren’t vanilla bean seeds, vanilla bean seeds are pretty expensive.

Dannon Light & Fit Greek Vanilla

Dannon Light & Fit Greek Yogurt Vanilla

Also 5.3 ounces, this one tasted the most sugary to me, and I see why. It’s only 80 calories, but only 13 grams of protein and 9 grams of sugar, so I’d guess 2.5-3 sugar cubs in each of these. And you won’t be full.

Chobani Flip Almond Coco Loco Greek Yogurt

Worst case scenario right here, Chobani Flip Almond Coco Loco Greek Yogurt. It’s the same amount of ounces as the others, but remember about 1/3 of that is the toppings, so you’re actually getting a lot less yogurt. The protein is at 12 grams, but the sugar! Oh my! It’s 21 grams, which will definitely counteract the protein. I’m estimating that there are 7 sugar cubes in this.

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