AKA: Eat Lots of Veggies Like Heather Challenge
By Jeannine Elder @BananaWisdom
Heather has lost over 270 lbs eating a lot of veggies along with some starches. I’ve never in my life seen someone eat so many veggies! So naturally, being my veggie inspiration I asked for her guidance. I will not be eating EXACTLY like Heather but she gave me some guidelines and allowed for some adaptations to help me get those veggies down the hatch. If you take the principles outlined below, remove the tahini and maple syrup, add in beans and it would be much closer to how she actually eats.
I am 41, I have Hashimoto’s Hypothyroidism, I’m a junk-food-aholic and veggie snob. I celebrated my 6 year veganaversary on May 20th. It goes to show not all vegans eat just rabbit food all day, if I did I’d be at my goal weight by now! Over the past few months I’ve been getting serious about retraining my tastebuds to love veggies and shed the last of my weight – which had been stalled for over 3 years. In February I ate nothing but potatoes and lost 8 lbs and took my taste buds for a test run with broccoli, brussels sprouts and asparagus live on YouTube – and I didn’t gag! This was a huge milestone for me! I continued with potatoes and added in veggies. I’ve lost over 21 pounds total, averaging 1-2 lbs per week. My friend Hannah (High Carb Hannah) saw my success and passion for potatoes and gave me the Potato Cleanse Facebook group!
Now I’m ready to UP my veggie game! This is how I’ll be eating for the next week. Feel free to adapt to suit your needs. If you are on the Potato Cleanse proper, please adapt the recipes to not include fat, fruits or legumes (highlighted in red). I will be vlogging my veggie challenge on YouTube and I hope that I inspire you to UP YOURS!
- Consume 1 lb of leafy greens per day
- Consume at least 1 lb of veggies per day
- Sequence Food: leafy greens > veggies > starch
- No oil, minimal salt, no flour or processed sugar
- Fruit is okay in small quantities
- One small serving of fat is allowed per day, but not required and it’s best to pair with your leafy greens
- No snacking in between meals. Being truly hungry will make your meals taste much better
- add a chopped apple to salad to make it more interesting
- sliced strawberries added to spinach salad
- a few small dates to sweeten a homemade dressing
- dessert if needed: nice cream made with 1 banana and a cup of frozen berries
- oil free hummus with tahini (if you like it without tahini go without)
- half an avocado on salad if you wish
- a dressing made with a small amount of nut butter
Prep for the Day:
- Roughly measure out 1 lb of leafy greens for your day and divide it into three containers
- What does one pound of leafy greens look like? A family 16 oz. or 454g container of greens
- Plan out your veggies aim for at least 1 lb but it’s likely you will end up eating a pound per meal because you will be hungry for it! One pound of baby carrots is a 16 oz. or 454g bag. Take a look at all the packaged convenience-veggies in the produce section to give you an idea what a pound of veggies looks like for various types of veggies
- Eat as much leafy greens and veggies as you want!
- Where’s the starch?? Don’t worry, there will be starches with dinner (in my case, potatoes or sweet potatoes)
Breakfast – Giant Salad
Take 1/3 of your leafy greens for the day and top with your favorite salad veggies such as cherry tomatoes, shredded carrots, shredded cabbage or broccoli slaw, chopped bell peppers, cucumber, zucchini and celery. Add a chopped apple or some berries if needed. Top with a tasty no-oil, dressing. *This is where I will have my ONE fat serving, if any, in the form of a dressing with tahini in it.
Lunch – Giant Salad + Extra Veggies
Take 1/3 of your leafy greens for the day and top with your favorite salad veggies. Plus you’ll have a side or two of veggies. You will be hungry! Examples of veggie sides: steamed broccoli/cauliflower, a pound of carrot sticks, collard or purple cabbage wraps filled with shredded coleslaw. IF you are still not satisfied you can add one potato with lunch.
Dinner – Giant Salad + Veggies + Starch
Take the last 1/3 of your your veggies for the day and top with your favorite salad veggies. Plus you’ll have a side of veggies perhaps even a veggie soup. And finally, potatoes! YAY! Any potato cleanse friendly potato dish: mashed, boiled, baked, shredded hash browns, oven baked fries, etc. It’s likely I won’t be able to eat more than 2 lbs of potatoes based on my experience of eating potatoes for the past four months. So I will prepare approximately 2 lbs of potatoes.
Recipe Ideas / Inspiration
Sauces / Dressings
Note: Heather enjoys most of her salads with salsa or a balsamic/mustard dressing.
High Carb Hannah’s Nacho Cheese Sauce
*Adapted to have less sodium*
2 small red or yellow potatoes
1/2 an onion (not chopped)
1/2 a red bell pepper
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt alternative (original recipe calls for 1 tsp salt)
2 tbsp salsa (if salsa is high in sodium, omit salt alternative)
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1 tsp hot sauce (original recipe called for 1 tbsp) *optional
Directions: Boil potatoes and onion until soft, place everything in a blender along with 1/4 cup of the cooking water and blend until smooth.
Mustard Balsamic Dressing
2 tbsp Stone Ground Mustard
2 tsp Balsamic Vinegar
2 tsp Pure Maple Syrup (optional)
Lazy SOS Free Ketchup
1/2 cup strained tomatoes (store bought jar, no added salt)
1 tsp Italian Herb blend
Potato Strong’s Cheese Sauce
I prefer this with regular yellow potatoes.
Creamy Balsamic Dressing *Beans*
Potato Cleansers – try making this with some boiled potatoes instead of beans.
Banana Blondie’s Citrus Tahini Dressing ADAPTED *Tahini* FAT
You should get at least 6 servings out of this, reduce amounts if you won’t use up within 3 days.
2 large oranges, peeled and seeds removed (original called for OJ)
3 tbsp of Lemon Juice
3 tbsp of Tahini (if you hate tahini try it with another nut or seed butter)
2 tbsp of Apple Cider Vinegar
3 tbsp of Dijon Mustard
1 tbsp of Raw Ginger Root or less
2 tbsp of Maple Syrup
1 small clove of Garlic (optional)
Directions: Blend all ingredients in Vitamix until smooth
Spicy Peanut Slaw Dressing *Peanut Powder & Fruit*
Zucchini Garlic Dressing *Tahini & Chickpeas* FAT
Garlicky Kale Salad *Tahini & Chickpeas* FAT
Fat Free Hummus *Tahini & Chickpeas* FAT
Low Fat Sweet Potato Hummus *Tahini & Chickpeas* FAT
Crispy Cheezy Roasted Cauliflower
Spinach and Sweet Potato Stuffed Mushrooms
Omit walnuts if you already had a fat planned for that day. I don’t like whole mushrooms so I’m going to sauté the stuffing on the stovetop and stuff into lettuce wraps
Great to have for dinner as your vegetable dish. Serve with your 1/3 salad and starch.
Cauliflower Taco Stuffing *FAT*
Use 1/4 cup walnuts. Half the soy sauce. Replace salt with Bensons Table Tasty or Herbamare. Half the chipotle seasoning, it’s stimulating for me.
Note: Potato cleansers – you could try this without the walnuts.
Banana Wisdom’s Potato Cauliflower Crust Pizza with Veggies
Potato Pancakes Grilled & Baked
Crispy Shredded Hash Browns from Scratch:
Broccoli Cheddar Soup *counts as both potato and veggie*
Recipe is written out on Plant Meal Planner or watch video on YouTube for free:
Oven Baked Fries
Wash and cut 3-4 potatoes (approx 2 lbs) into thick fries. Coat in favourite spices. Place on parchment lined baking sheet. Bake at 420°F for 40 minutes.
Wash and pierce 3-4 (approx 2 lbs) potatoes, place directly on rack or on baking sheet. Bake at 420°F for 40-60 minutes, until soft.
Baked Sweet Potatoes
Wash the place 2 medium sweet potatoes on a parchment lined baking sheet. Do not pierce. Bake at 420°F for 40-60 minutes, until soft and liquid bubbling out.
Wash, peel and cut 3-4 potatoes (approx 2 lbs). Boil until fork tender. Drain water. Add in 1/4 cup no-salt added veggie broth or non dairy milk and your favourite spices. Mash until smooth. For fun, you could add chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder and cumin for “taco potatoes” then serve in lettuce wraps.
Printable Downloadable PDF: UpYours_VeggieChallenge
This was done rather quickly so please excuse any typos or grammatical errors. Time is not on my side at the moment but many expressed interest in joining me so here it is, with all it’s flaws.
Follow My Challenge on YouTube: Banana Wisdom