Tag Archives: Gin-gins

What’s In Your Bag?

Hubby and I were relaxing in our local Starbucks when I reached into my bag for a little treat to go with my first iced coffee of the summer. I’m one of those petite women who carries a bag that’s twice as big (and heavy!) as she is and as I fished around and started to “unload” the Hubster laughed and asked “Exactly what’s in that bag?”. “Be prepared” isn’t just the motto of the Boy Scouts. So, here’s what’s in my bag:

1. Individual servings of almond butter (flavored with honey, maple and chocolate) are handy if I’m out and about and get caught without a snack. All I need to do is purchase a bagel, roll, crackers or other “vehicle” for my almond butter. No utensil needed just tear off a corner and squeeze out the almond butter. Sometimes I carry peanut butter pouches and Justin’s also makes chocolate hazelnut butter in an individual pouch.

2. Ziploc snack bags of mini pretzels and low fat ginger cat cookies from Trader Joes’s. I find rather than avoiding food, eating just a small handful of something crunchy and salty or crunchy and spicy (gingery) can actually make me feel better when my tummy is a little queasy and uncertain.

3. Glucose Tablets and a Glucose Liquid Shot in case of low blood sugar. I’m not diabetic and am diligent about eating 6 small meals a day but have had two occasions when I’ve had an unpleasant shift in blood sugar. I sat in my car and ate 6 hard candies until it passed but never want to get “stuck” in a situation like that again. I picked up this helpful tip from Crystal’s Traveling with Gastroparesis Video Blog Post. I haven’t had to use them but having the glucose products gives me a little extra peace of mind that I won’t be caught unprepared if another sugar shift is in my future.

4. Ginger tea bags for “tummy taming”. I can ask for a cup of hot water anywhere. I’ve been enjoying Twinings Herbal Revive Lemon and Chinese Ginger lately.

5. Jelly Belly Sports Beans. I’m not kidding myself, although these claim to be “quick energy for sports performance” they’re nothing more than glorified candy. What I do like about them is that they’re portioned into 100 calorie packs and contain carbohydrates, electrolytes and a few vitamins. Each resealable packet comes in berry, lemon/lime, watermelon (contains caffeine) and orange flavor. I found them completely by accident when I was browsing through the food items at REI Sports.

6. Gin-Gins, Ginger Chews and Ricola Lozenges. I keep a handful of Gin-Gins ginger hard candies and Ginger Chews from the Ginger People as well as Original Ricola lozenges. Between the spicy ginger and minty-herbal flavors I always have something soothing to suck on.

7. Peppermint Gum. Not pictured because I just chewed my last piece! I find chewing gum helps with the feelings of fullness. I’ve never been quite sure if chewing gum helps move the food along or just takes my mind off a full tummy but either way it makes me feel better after a meal that won’t “move”.

So, I’ve shown your mine…what’s in your bag?

As always…Eat Well! Be Well! Enjoy!

Tasty Find! Eats,Treats and Tummy Tamers

Not everything I enjoy is homemade.  I have plenty of store-bought favorite eats, treats and tummy tamers so I thought I’d take a moment to mention some of them…

EATS:

It’s no secret I’m a very cautious eater but I do eat out on occasion and on evenings that I absolutely, positively do not want to cook there are two places where I trust I’ll get a “safe” meal.  I’m currently trying to expand my dining out horizons so if anyone wants to share their safe meals and go-to restaurants please do!

IHOP I can most certainly make pancakes and scrambled eggs myself but sometimes it’s nice to have someone else do the cooking and clean up.  A stack of buttermilk pancakes and two scrambled eggs are a safe and simple dinner out.  I ask for the butter to be left off and sometimes (to the horror and embarrassment of Hubby) bring my own real maple or berry syrup for the pancakes.  I take the extra pancakes home for later.

Ted’s Montana Grill For a cozy, more up-scale dining experience we head to Ted’s for dinner.  My “safe” meal is one of the same meals I ordered before my GP diagnosis-Beer Can Chicken with a baked sweet potato (available after 4:00 pm) with the cinnamon butter on the side.  Once the skin is removed the chicken is still moist and tasty.  The baked sweet potato is tender and delicious and barely needs a small dollop of the cinnamon butter. I ask for an extra plate and use the room to cut up my chicken away from the pool of sauce at the bottom of the soup plate they serve it in.  I give my roasted asparagus spears to Hubby and ask for a take out box for the rest of the chicken and half sweet potato.  This is not how the meal is written on the menu.  I don’t ask I just specifically order it this way.  Ted’s has locations in Montana, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, Virgina, Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut and Massachusetts.

TREATS:

When I was trying to maintain my weight I started to snack mindlessly between meals and snacks…exactly what they tell you not to do when trying to lose weight.  Now that I’ve gained five pounds I need to be a little more mindful of my treats.  Remember treats and sweets are for after your nutritional needs are met.  These are a few of my favorites…

Trader Joe’s Low Fat Cat Cookies for People are available in ginger and chocolatey flavor.  They are modestly sized, crunchy, not overly sweet and are reasonably priced at approximately $2.49 per 16 ounce tub…oh, and very tasty too.

15 Ginger Cats: 120 calories, 2 grams fat, <1 gram fiber, 2 grams protein

15 Chocolatey Cats: 110 calories, 1.5 grams fat, 1 gram fiber, 2 grams protein.

Kedem Tea Biscuits are made in Israel and available in the Jewish section of the market.  They are crisp, delicate, rectangular tea biscuits available in vanilla, orange, chocolate and plain flavor.  Each sleeve is approximately 79 cents and sometime 3 sleeves for a dollar during the Jewish holidays.  I enjoy them plain or as little sandwiches filled with seedless blackberry, strawberry or raspberry jam..and sometimes add a little almond or peanut butter.

2 biscuits: 32 calories, 1 gram fat, 0.2 grams fiber, 0.5 grams protein

Double Rainbow and Hagen Daz Chocolate Sorbet are both a refreshing change when I’m dairy-ed out at the end of the day.  The Double Rainbow sorbet (available at Trader Joe’s) has a fudgey flavor and is more reasonably priced than the Hagen Daz sorbet.  However, the Hagen Daz chocolate sorbet has a much richer dark chocolate flavor.  If you’re looking for a non-dairy chocolate fix both are up to the task.

1/2 cup of sorbet: 120 calories, 1 gram fat, 2 grams fiber, 2 grams protein

DelMonte Fruit Chillers are tubes and cups of fruit sorbet available in the canned fruit section of the market.  Each tube or cup is portioned and convenient and doesn’t need to be stored in the freezer until you’re ready for a frozen treat.  Each box is made with 1 pound of fruit and comes in flavors like strawberry snowstorm and grape berry blizzard.

Jelly Belly Jelly Beans are downright addictive!  So be warned.  Measure out a small handful and step away from the bag!  Four calories per bean may sound harmless and 100 calories for 25 jelly beans seems modest but then 25 beans turn into 100 and so on and so on….until you’ve plowed through an entire bag.  Guilty as charged!

Min Pretzels and Baked Lay’s Potato Crisps hit the salty spot.  I find sometimes a small handful of mini pretzels or a few crisps is all it takes.

TUMMY TAMERS:

SoBe Lifewater…specifically the Yumberry Pomegranate flavor.  I generally take the claims on vitamin water bottles with a grain of salt but in this case the ginger and dandelion root extracts really have a way of soothing my tummy.  Even my non-GP Hubby sipped one during his last tummy bug and came to the same conclusion.  This is a calorie free beverage so if you’re trying to gain or maintain be aware that it may be soothing but filling you up without filling you out.

GIN-GINS Double Strength Ginger Hard Candies from the Ginger People are my favorite tummy tamer.  So much so, that I finally broke down and ordered a five pound box directly from them.  They are made with real ginger, sweet and spicy and naturally stimulating (as proclaimed on the package!).  I pop one in my mouth right after lunch and dinner to help kick-start the digesting process or when I get that wave of nausea we’re all so familiar with.

Those are all the eats, treats and tummy tamers I can think of at the moment.  Please feel free to share any of your favorites.  Eat Well! Be Well! Enjoy!