Thursday, January 23, 2014

Boar's Head - Low Carb Lunch Ideas

I grew up eating a lot of Italian meats and cheeses.  My family used to make regular trips to our favorite Italian stores in Pittsburgh.  I especially loved visits to the Strip District, Pittsburgh's historic market district.  Who could ever forget the wonderful lady who called everyone dearheart at the cheese counter in Penn Mac.  When I went on the Atkins Diet in 2009 to lose some weight, I regularly ate meats and cheeses for lunch.  Some of my coworkers told me that eating like that would send my cholesterol soaring.  All summer and fall, I stuck to a strict diet of bacon for breakfast, meats and cheeses for lunch, and meat and salad or low carb vegetables for dinner.  I also ate Atkins bars and low carb fruits after the first two weeks.  Before this diet, I was a carb addict.  I lived on bread, pasta, and potatoes.  I don't like to diet, which is why eating low carb was good for me at the time.  I never felt hungry, which helped.  As far as results go, I went from 140 pounds down to 123 pounds in a very short period of time on my 5 foot 7 inch frame.  I was doing some light walking in conjunction with the diet and felt great.  My already very low cholesterol went down even further.  Once I got to a weight I was happy with, I started cheating one day a week, then two.  I was able to maintain 123 pounds for over two years with 5 low carb days a week combined with 2 high carb days a week.   I recently saw a doctor on Katie Couric's show advocating eating low carb 5 days a week, and high carb the other two.  I ended my regimented low carb/high carb cycle on our honeymoon and slowly gained 10 pounds over the next couple of years.  Then, I became pregnant with twins and gained the rest back.  Oh well, at least I am still a normal healthy weight for my height.

I don't plan on going back on a low carb diet anytime soon.  I weigh myself every day and exercise 5 days a week to maintain my weight.  I do still love to eat low carb lunches though.  I feel better with this type of lunch then when I eat things like bread or chips.  One of my favorite lunches in the past year has been Boar's Head Bianco D'Oro Italian Salame with avocado.  I put a piece of avocado on each slice of salami.  It's so ridiculously good!  I thought people would think I was strange when I posted this on my Gluten Free in Orlando Facebook page, but this post had an abnormally high number of likes and positive comments.  

My daughters love to roll up Boar's Head pepperoni with provolone cheese.  All of Boar's Head's deli meats, cheeses, and condiments are gluten free.  You can read more about it here.  I have started buying prepackaged Boar's Head meats and cheeses from Publix because I do worry about cross contamination at the deli counter.  There is probably little chance of it, but buying prepackaged makes me feel better.  

Boar's Head meats have between one and zero carbs per serving, which is usually 3 to 5 slices.  The cheeses I buy have 1 carb per serving (2 slices) and are a good source of calcium and protein.  I was shocked to read that the Swiss cheese I purchased is also lactose free.  

My new favorite lunch is honey smoked turkey breast and avocado rolled up in provolone or Swiss cheese.  I also add a little sprinkle of kosher salt on the avocado.  

I am looking forward to trying Boar's Head pancetta soon.  I want to replicate some of the amazing pasta dishes I have had at Via Napoli and Tutto Gusto in Epcot.

I highly recommend Boar's Head meats and cheeses because they are safe for Celiacs and are of the highest quality.  Another favorite of mine is Boar's Head corn beef.  It is amazing with some Swiss cheese!  You can learn more about Boar's Head here on their website.

February 23, 2014 Update -- Publix is now carrying Boar's Head Hummus in four varieties - Traditional, Roasted Chipotle Pepper, Roasted Pine Nut, and Roasted Red Pepper.  Maybe they are new products, because I couldn't even find information about them on Boar's Head's website.  

For lunch, we had a smoothie and Crunchmaster Sea Salt Multi-Grain Crackers with Boar's Head Traditional Hummus.  I seldom like store bought brands, preferring to make my own hummus, but I was impressed with Boar's Head Traditional Hummus and would buy it again.  It is labeled gluten free.


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