Sunday, January 13, 2013

Day 13 The food Stamp Diabetic Project

Let's look at how my nutrition needs have been met.

I am not overdoing the carbs, but I can sure use more Vitamin A, D, and E. The only way I can get enough calcium is when I eat masses of leafy greens, so for me to be at more than 70% is good.

I have been working hard on flavors other than salt in my food (I actually take a salt supplement because I need it.)so I am pleased with being so close to 100%.

You can see the calories vary widely as I try different foods, but on this budget only once have I gone over 2,000. Cheap unhealthy carbs could easily push my calories up while staying in budget but save one bad day, I have avoided that trap.

Today I have 4.46.

I begin with black coffee and toast. I made this bread last week, very high fiber, which is a good thing. Then my one egg omelet.

Black coffee .10
Pomegranate .50
4 tiny toasts .20
Peanut butter .18
One egg .21
Butter .17
Cheese .10
Total 1.46

Already I am pushing it with 52 grams of carbohydrate.

Not even noon and I am already hungry. I am doing laundry/garbage etc. today and saw a neighbor downstairs...she invited me to Sunday dinner. When I said I really couldn't she told me they had butts, beans, and greens, and plenty of rice. I almost melted on the spot.

For those of you who live in suburbs...butts are smoked turkey butts, often prepared with white beans and/or green, typically collards. With rice it is an amazing soul satisfying meal.

Once I got back upstairs I realized what an idiot I had been. Were I really on food assistance I would have jumped at the invite. I could have avoided the rice. I've decided the next time I get an invite, I am going to jump at it.

Instead I am going to warm my pitiful, small, sad lunch.

20 grams of carb at lunch.

I had one of the chicken quesadillas.
CQ .43
Iced tea .03
Total .46

I ran around looking for shopping deals (I discovered that Zabars will indeed sell 5 olives, if you only want 5) I picked up a Cornish Game Hen for 2.76 and now have to figure out how to get 3 meals out of it. I went to the gym and came home famished.

Mean starving.

I grabbed the pretzels, then remembered to have them with a protein and went for the sunflower seeds (.99 for 10 1/4 cup servings)and some of those free dried cranberries and finished with the olives.

Pretzels .15
Sunflower seeds .10
Olives .17 (best 5 olives ever, tiny but wonderful)
Total .42
With 40 grams of carbohydrate I have to think of this as a meal.

As the real meal went into the oven I took a look at my chicken livers.

I picked them up for .90 cents at a farm market, it seems there is no huge demand for organic liver. I attempted a corchon.

Yesterday I rolled the liver tightly in cheesecloth and buried it in kosher salt. After 24 hours it was not firm, clearly not curing as I had hoped. Rather than end up with fish bait I took the liver from the salt and cooked it on a low heat in some goose fat left from Christmas. I've removed it, strained the fat (it can be re-used) and have the rolled mass chilling. We will see what I have does not get thrown away so somehow it will be made edible.

I learned something about food. If you tell someone they absolutely cannot have something then that is all they will think about. I told myself NO white rice and have been craving it daily. So tonight I decided that I could have it...a 1/2 cup serving.

With this beautiful chicken and broccoli combo I had my 1/2 cup of rice.

Pure bliss. I managed to salvage the bones and a bit of meat for soup so I think it is safe to divide my hen into 3 meals. .76 for the soup and 1 dollar each for the meaty bits.

I feel so good, so satisfied, almost blissful.

Let's see how I did.

Game Hen 1.00
Rice .08
Broccoli 1/2 crown .45
Total 1.53
Carbs 35 grams

1,814 calories
Total 3.87

I did great money wise, but there were other costs...that cheap broccoli was a 3 hour trip. The game hen on sale was a 30 minute walk each way to and from the Bronx. I spent a good hour turning that cheap chicken into tasty quesadillas.

On the plus side I have .59 to carry over to tomorrow. 

Was it a nutritious day?


Josie said...

Have you ever heard of a book called Wildly Affordable Organic? The author - who also has a blog called Cook for Good - writes that, after either trying a SNAP challenge or reading about how hard it is to eat on the budget (can't remember which), she came up with a plan for how you can eat well on less than $5 per day. She says that for this price, you can even indulge in organic products if you do it right and that if you choose conventional, you can eat for even less. She also says that with planning, you can prepare foods from scratch in less than a half an hour a day (it requires some cooking ahead and freezing techniques).

She does advocate a vegan diet. While I have nothing at all against veganism and think it can be a very healthful way of eating, I don't necessarily think it's the right choice for everyone.

In any event, I read the book and was intrigued by her premise, but never actually tried her techniques. I mention it because I was just wondering if you were familiar with it and if so, what your thoughts on it are. Also, I wonder if it would be doable for someone eating meat or if it would work for a diabetic (If I recall, it involved an awful lot of rice and beans and pastas).

I'm enjoying reading your blog. I think food justice is such an important topic. The time and energy commitment alone that it takes to eat on such a small budget would be too much for me. Kudos to you for bringing attention to this important topic.

Karl Wilder, Chef said...

I will have to take a little time to go over some of these recipes. What strikes me at first glance is that they seem to be very carb heavy, but until I get into serving amounts I can see how much.

In addition the calories appear to be low, which is a big problem for me.

I will cost out a few, run them through nutrition analysis and see if I can find something that will be helpful for me and other.s

Karl Wilder, Chef said...

I took a little time Josie and ran day one through a nutrition program.

Let me say first there are some wonderful ideas on both the site and the cookbook for diabetics and non. I think a lot can be learned from her.

One of the things you will notice from the review sites is that everyone who loves the plan loses weight.

Some diabetics need to lose weight, I personally do not. With an average of fewer than 1,400 calories I would have difficulty getting out of bed in a week.

The dinner on day one would put a diabetic into the hospital. The snack of fruit without protein is not a good idea.

It is not a high nutrition menu (some of mine are and some are not, it is extremely hard to get what you need on this budget) but in this one C is chronically low as are B12 and calcium.

Also organic corn meal would drive me over the budget for the week. The price on it is very high in Manhattan, even in bulk.

However I would suggest that those who have waste and leftover bits follow her soup suggestion. Some very good soups can be made this way. Though a diabetic would need more protein the site and the book have some excellent recipes and ideas that can be incorporated.

Gloria said...

I found the blog obnoxious.

She has NO idea what organic foods cost in big cities, when you can find them.