I don’t remember exactly when it was that I picked up this article called “The Frozen Food Diet.” I am pretty sure it was while I was waiting in an examining room during my physical – about 6 months ago. I picked up an old issue of Good Housekeeping magazine, and came across the article. It was in the October 2005 issue and was written by Delia A. Hammock, M.S, R.D. I have looked for the same information online and have been unsuccessful. Here is what the introduction said:

“If only I had the time to diet…”

I bet you’ve said that before. We understand: It ain’t easy preparing diet-friendly foods every day, especially if you’re making something separate for the rest of your family. That’s why we’ve come up with this quickie diet – every meal in our plan can be prepared in nine minutes or less. The secret: 28 microwavable frozen meals that meet our strict nutritional criteria but still pack lots of flavor. Just press the start button on your microwave – and – voila!

Can a diet so simple really work? You bet. Our plan is based on research done by the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In an eight-week study conducted there in 2003, women who ate frozen meals as their main course for lunch and dinner lost an average of 12 pounds; women who were supposed to follow a calorically equivalent diet – but who had to plan and cook everything themselves – lost only 8 pounds. The results suggest that the second group of women ended up consuming more calories because they didn’t accurately measure their foods, says LeaAnn Carson, M.S., R.D., a research dietitian at the university and one of the study’s authors. The lesson: Frozen entrees can help keep portion sizes under control.

With our plan, portion control can help you lose about 1.5 pounds per week – 20 pounds in just over three months. Time to stock the freezer!”

At the same time as I was reading this, the Jenny Craig program was getting a lot of publicity with Kirstie Alley as a spokesperson. I did look into the program, but am shy about committing that much money at the moment. I also visited a lot of other sites that provide calorie-controlled meals to people who are dieting – there are quite a few, and they have some very attractive food. Some of it gourmet-quality, organic, etc.

I have gained at least 30 unwanted pounds since I got married – hey, maybe more!  I am aware that a lot of it has to do with my lowered activity level:  I no longer ride horses, and I am not a traveling teacher anymore (I used to go from room to room and that was some exercise).  I also LOVE to eat and cook – and go out to eat, and invent new recipes… but more on that later.

I am going to devote a separate entry to “the meal plan” – so I will close for now.  I am debating about whether or not to include before or after pictures.  I am obviously a narcissistic exhibitionist (my husband’s opinion of many bloggers), but I need some way of keeping myself honest.  I also would like to share some of the great health links and information I have found – and maybe even put them into practice!


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