The 30-Day Challenge

In my post last week, I mentioned that I would be starting a 30-Day PCOS challenge.  Well, it started yesterday and I’m pretty freaking excited!

I found this group on Pinterest as I was looking for PCOS friendly recipes.  The group leader was touting a lifestyle challenge that teaches people with PCOS how to eat in order to reduce symptoms.  After reading through the Facebook group, I found that the majority of the women who went through the lifestyle changes found a huge improvement in their overall health.  People that have had a hard time losing weight were finally finding success, and others who hadn’t had regular period in years were now ovulating regularly.  Their excruciating cramps, mood swings and fatigue are all a thing of the past.  The reviews abated my skepticism enough that I decided to give it a try.  After all, the challenge is free, so I literally have nothing to lose.

When you really think about it, it makes so much sense that the symptoms associated with PCOS can improve or worsen based on the way you nourish your body.  It’s no secret that heavily processed foods contain artificial ingredients.  Artificial ingredients  don’t provide substance and they can be engineered to create a sort of addiction to that food.  This results in people overeating and leads to obesity.  Eating fresh and organic is obviously the way to go, but try telling that to yourself when you’re hungover and craving the neon orange deliciousness that is Kraft Mac & Cheese, am I right?

One of the biggest hurdles for me during this challenge will be re-training myself to make food ahead of time.  I’ve started to get a little bit better at pre-packing lunches and making snacks to bring with me to work, but my problem is that I’m picky and get tired of food easily.  And I don’t particularly like pre-cooked or reheated meat.  I’m basically Gordon Ramsay in every episode of Kitchen Nightmares.  You give me a dish with something that’s been pre-cooked or reheated, I will come up with some cleverly vulgar way to tell you that it’s terrible.  So what does that leave me?  Probably tons, but for being someone who loves to cook, I’m not that creative.

Do you have any go-to recipes that you take with you to work each week?  If so, I’d love to hear about them.  Ideally, they would be dairy, gluten/grain and sugar-free or can be modified to remove those ingredients.  All recipes welcome!

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Cauliflower Pizza Crust

So I’ll admit, it’s not exactly hard for me to eat healthy, but at the end of the day, if I am given the choice between a salad and a pizza, 9 times out of 10, I’m going to go with pizza.  So imagine being on a diet where gluten is forbidden and carbs are to be eaten sparingly.  You have to get creative, right?

I’ve been hearing people talk about Cauliflower pizza crust and how it tastes JUST LIKE REGULAR PIZZA!  There’s absolutely no way that’s true.  However, with just slice of pizza matching the carbohydrate total of an entire head of cauliflower, I had to give it a go.

I have to give major props to Trader Joe’s for making it so easy to experiment with foods such as cauliflower pizza crust.  The Trader Joe’s closest to my house not only had ready made cauliflower crust, but bags of riced cauliflower in their produce section which would make it incredibly easy to make a crust from scratch.  For research (read: laziness) purposes, I decided to give the ready made crust a try.  This crust made my experiment so easy and affordable.  Coming at just $3.99, it was much cheaper than ordering in and only took about 20 minutes of prep time.

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Lee wasn’t down with this level of experimentation, so he chose to get a regular pizza crust and we spent our Saturday night building our dream pizzas.  He went with the tried and true Gilbertson pizza:  Pepperoni & Green Olive.  I chose to go for a Mediterranean-themed pizza, using pesto as my sauce and olives and artichokes as my toppings.  I’m supposed to be cutting dairy out of my diet as well, but given that I was heading in to uncharted territories, I used some shredded mozzarella as my security blanket.  I figured that way, if the pizza crust was inedible, perhaps the cheese would save it.

Let me tell you, this pizza did not disappoint.  While I would never say that cauliflower crust tastes the same as a regular pizza, I found it to be an enjoyable substitute.  If you pre-bake the pizza for long enough, you can get the same crunchy crust as you would with a regular thin crust pizza.  And, you know what?  I didn’t need the cheese.  If anything, I would say that the cheese detracted from the overall flavor of the pizza.

I’m excited to give cauliflower crust another go, this time making the crust from scratch.  Below is a picture of the pizza I made.  I’m neither a photographer nor a food blogger, but I thought the picture turned out okay!

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You can find the recipe for homemade cauliflower crust here:

Cauliflower Pizza Crust

And if you’re looking for a dairy-free version:

Cauliflower Pizza Crust-Dairy Free

If you give the ready made crust or the recipes a try, let me know what you think!