Friday, September 28, 2012

Cabbage Soup Diet


So a bunch of coworkers and I decided this was a good idea. The cabbage soup diet is pretty well known in the world of fad diets. I thought it would be a great way to jump start myself into a healthier diet. Was it worth it? You'll have to read to find out. Here we go! Here's the recipe (from online). I made minor adjustments to it since I made so much of it I wanted it to taste different each day.

6 large green onions (also called “spring” onions)
2 green peppers
1 or 2 cans of tomatoes (diced or whole)
3 carrots
1 container (10 oz. or so) mushrooms
1 bunch of celery
half a head of cabbage
1 package spice only soup mix (In the US, Liptons is a good choice)
1 or 2 cubes of bouillon (optional)
1 48oz can Low Sodium V8 juice (optional)
Season to taste with pepper, parsley, curry, garlic powder, etc. (Little to NO SALT!)

Directions:
Slice onions, put in a pot on medium heat and start to sauté with cooking spray. Do this until the onions are whiter/clearer in color (about 4-6 minutes). Cut green pepper stem end off, then cut pepper in half to take out the seeds and membrane. Cut the green pepper into bite size pieces and add to pot. Take the outer leafs layers off the cabbage, cut into bite size pieces, add to pot. Clean carrots, and celery, cut into bite size pieces and toss them in. Add tomatoes now, too. If you would like a spicy soup, add a small amount of curry or cayenne pepper now. For seasonings, you can use a spice soup packet of your choice (no noodles!) or use beef or chicken bouillon cubes. These cubes are optional, and you can add spices you like instead (make sure not to add much salt, if any at all). Use about 12 cups of water (or 8 cups and the 48 oz of Low Sodium V8 juice), cover and put heat on low. Let soup simmer for a long time – about 2 hours or until vegetables are tender. Remember: This diet should only be followed for 7 days at a time, with at least two weeks in between.
I made Day 1 pretty traditional with the Low Sodium V8 and 2 vegetable bouillon cubes. I also used 1/4 white onion diced instead of green onions. Day One: Fruit: Eat all of the fruit you want (except bananas). Eat only your soup and the fruit for the first day. For drinks- unsweetened teas, cranberry juice and water. The soup was good but the cabbage was hard to eat because I cut it into strips. Note to self: cut it smaller next time! My coworkers did this detox/diet with me and we were all very sluggish by the end of the day. The lack of protein in this diet can do that. It says if you are really feeling like you're going to cheat on Day 1 that you can have one egg or one piece of cheese. I did soooo good until almost 9 pm when I caved in and had my one ounce of cheese. 

I made Day 2 with one chicken bouillon and two Lipton Savory Herb and Garlic packets. I also blended it as I was reading several blog posts that said it was better that way - it IS!!! This was a favorite of almost all my coworkers. Day Two: Vegetables: Eat until you are stuffed will all fresh, raw or cooked vegetables of your choice. Try to eat leafy green vegetables and stay away from dry beans, peas and corn. Eat all the vegetables you want along with your soup. At dinner, reward yourself with a big baked potato with butter. Do not eat fruit today. I felt sooo full after my baked potato (and I used fake butter instead of real butter). Oh, I technically lost 4 pounds but 2.5 of those were from me gorging myself over my birthday weekend. Still 1.5 pounds in one day? HOLLA! 

For Day 3 I added kale to the soup (read online about that - only do that though if you get vegetables that day!) I also added Goya Adobe seasoning, crushed red pepper and curry powder. I also lightly chopped it up in a blender. Day Three: Mix Days One and Two: Eat all the soup, fruits and vegetables you want. No Baked Potato. I made spaghetti squash last night and I didn't eat very much of it because my baked potato filled me up. I also topped it with a tomato sauce and chopped cherry tomatoes. That was a very hearty lunch. If you do this diet, I would recommend this. Bad news - I'm getting sick! (Don't you feed a cold?)

Day Four: Bananas and Skim Milk: Eat as many as eight bananas and drink as many glasses of skim milk as you would like on this day, along with your soup. This day is supposed to lessen your desire for sweets. Woke up today and thought, "Yup. I definitely have a cold." Awesome. As a joke someone told me to make some soup. Very funny, Cathy! I was hoping the loss from Day 1 would be the same everyday. It's not. I never lost anymore weight. Also all the cabbage soup makes you super bloated. I didn't like this. I started this day half given up because of my cold. I made a few banana and skim milk smoothies but by dinner time I was done.

So, that's it. I made it four days without protein and fat and lost 1.5 pounds. While the soup isn't bad, you do get sick of it. My pros for me: I lost 1.5 pounds. My cons: Fresh fruit and veggies are expensive.   Also, making a ton of soup is time consuming (I made the soup for everyone and carried it to work every day). I had no energy and couldn't exercise. If you're interested in doing this diet, you can find the rest of the days online. IMO you're better off calorie counting and eating a balanced meal.

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