Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Hungry Girl's Book Review

I haven't posted in a while because, instead of focusing on getting healthy, I've been focusing on ummmm...well I suppose getting healthy.  As in getting over a cold.

I hate being sick.  And I know "they" say you can exercise with a cold, but some other "they" says you should rest when you're sick (and I like that advice better).  The last thing I feel like doing when I'm sick is working out.  I even skipped yoga last week.

EG made me go to the gym with her today.  (I know she probably doesn't see it that way, but when I IMed her and asked "do you want to do lunch or walk or something?" I was really hoping for the first choice, or maybe the "something" and not the part that involves sweat.  And that's the part she chose.  Dang her.

I just did 30 minutes on the treadmill, and it was a slow going 30 minutes.  But I was sure sweating and huffing and puffing.  I kept telling myself this was in no way a reflection of my fitness level, but rather a reflection of my nasal stuffiness and cold-sapped energy levels.  We'll see how well that excuse holds up next week.

Anyway, I just returned a book to the library that I thought I'd post a little about because it might be one some of you have opinions on yourself or are curious about.  Regina read it before I did, and her opinion was about the same as mine.

The book is Hungry Girl: 200 Under 200 by Lisa Lillien, and, as promised, it does provide 200 recipes, each under 200 calories.  And some of them look/sound pretty yummy.  There aren't very many pictures, and I really like pictures in my cookbooks.  However, I realize that also makes cookbooks more expensive.

My co-worker looked at the book before I returned it to the library.  She flipped through real quick and said, "Oh!  That looks really yummy! ... Oh...  That looks like a lot of work."  That was my first impression as I started reading through some of the recipes.  I mean, I don't see myself getting out the mixing bowls and griddle to make five tiny silver dollar pancakes.

The more I read, I noticed that the low calorie counts are largely due to the use of sugar substitutes, fat free cheese, fat free sour cream, Cool Whip Free, etc...  So, I was kinda thinking, I could just make tacos like I always make tacos and use fat free stuff.  Except I don't like the way that stuff tastes.  So, no.

Then I also realized, the low calorie counts are largely due to small serving sizes.  There is a recipe for breakfast cookies that actually looks pretty yummy.  And who wouldn't love cookies for breakfast?  (You can't have cookies for breakfast, but you CAN have Cookie Crisp!  Anyone?  Showing my age.)  Then I saw that the serving size and calorie count is for one cookie.  Well, now, if I could eat just one cookie, maybe I wouldn't be needing a low calorie cookbook.  And honestly, I could eat one Oreo, or one Chips Ahoy, or one of my grandma's homemade Special K cookies, all for less than 200 calories.  (I suspect the pizookie weighs in at a few more.)

So, overall, I wasn't sold.  I prefer to eat more "real" foods, instead of cooking up concoctions of sugar substitutes and fat free cheese.  But, if say you're diabetic or something, there could be some good stuff to try in here.  Or if you feel the need to whip up five tiny pancakes.


Anonymous said...

My problem with the HG stuff is that it uses REALLY SPECIFIC ingrediants. Which is great, unless you don't happen to live in the USA. When you're foreign, you don't have the same brands available to you, so you're left to struggle through her recipes.

Plus, it's a lot of processed food. Like, A LOT.

Deanna said...

It all comes down to counting calories and fat grams (and exercise of course). I'd rather eat a little of something that tastes really good than a lot of something that is so so.

I'm with you about the exercise. I cannot make myself exercise when I feel bad. It just doesn't happen.

"And so our stories go..." said...

I always go by calories in calories out. Portion size is important to me. And eating slowly. Some people eat so fast!
Love this post.

rebecca said...

I don't exercise when I'm sick. Who has the energy? I say, listen to your body.

And, contrary to popular belief, diet/fat-free/sugarless stuff is bad, bad, bad for you! I've read so many books on nutrition and the stuff they have to put in those foods to make it palatable you can't even pronounce. So what kind of food are you really eating anyway? No thanks. And, anyway, ALL of them have sugar! Just read the label and you will see it goes by another name.

Hope you're feeling better!