keto

Diet Changes

It’s been awhile since I talked about medication and anxiety, etc. Here are a few posts to give some background:

Medications and Weight – the brief history of starting prozac because of my postpartum anxiety.

Positive Thinking, Positive Change – The post where I talk about gaining 10 pounds when I increased the dosage of prozac and trying a different medication.

Keto Background – The post where I decided to try the keto diet in order to lose the weight.

What was so frustrating about gaining 10 pounds on prozac last year was that I was still working out. I was still counting my calories. I did some research and it seems like prozac in particular, changes the metabolism in your brain. There are some theories that it might cause insulin resistance, as well. I read through a bunch of online medical journals and reports and articles. Some of which I understood–a lot was over my head. But there was definitely evidence of prozac causing weird shifts in your metabolism and WHAT you crave.

I know that when I increased the dosage from the minimal I was craving sugar and carbs like mad. I went back down to 10mg and the cravings decreased. I went on the keto diet and lost some weight in the beginning and then the weight loss stopped.

“It has been observed that Prozac and weight gain go hand in hand, especially in women.  (source)”

Ugh!

I mean, none of this is news to me, really. I’ve had a history of depression my whole life and I’ve tried a bunch of different medications over 20+ years. I had bad experiences with Paxil, Effexor (40 pound weight gain), Celexa (15 pound gain), Zoloft, Lexapro, Wellbutrin (the best one,that never caused weight gain). I know that antidepressants can cause weight gain. Which is why I try and be more diligent–keep counting my calories and keep working out.

I’ve been doing okay lately with my anxiety and at my last therapy session my doctor “cleared” me of having a “clinical mental health issue.” They don’t say cured. 😉 I’m not cured, I will always struggle with anxiety, but I am using the tools I learned to try and manage it. Which is why I thought maybe it’s time to stop the prozac, see how I manage without it and HOPEFULLY finally lose the weight.

It’s been pretty frustrating this year that I didn’t lose a lot of weight doing the keto diet. Especially following a bunch of keto people on Instagram and seeing drastic weight changes for people doing the diet. It felt like my body adapted really quickly to doing keto and then just STOPPED losing weight. No matter what I did. It wasn’t even a slow weight loss…it just stopped.

It takes about a month for prozac to be completely out of my system. But I’m ready to try and see if it helps me with weight loss. It’s been a struggle the last few months to stay committed to keto when I’m not seeing results.

Finally, you might want to check out this podcast about metabolism. It was really interesting and informative!

Cozy, Rainy, Yummy

Sunday we woke up to rain. Rain rain rain! Downpour, actually! I guess summer is officially over in Portland…So making something cozy for dinner was a must.

I’d been saving this recipe for awhile and finally tried it. And it’s a winner!

FRENCH ONION CHICKEN CASSEROLE

Ingredients:

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 or 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Red crushed chili pepper flakes, optional
  • Pinch of salt and fresh cracked pepper
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (or Gruyere)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 5 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • Fresh chopped parsley, for garnish

DIRECTIONS

1. To make the chicken casserole: Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). Lightly grease a 9×12-inch baking dish and set aside.

2. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5-8 minutes until soft.

3. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are caramelized – about 15 minutes. Pour in 1/4 cup of broth to deglaze if your pan gets too dry, and keep stirring until onions are browned. 

4. Stir in fresh minced garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Turn off the heat and allow to cool slightly.

5. Season chicken breasts with oregano, crushed chili pepper flakes, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Go easy on the salt because French onion and cheese are already salted. Arrange chicken breasts in the baking dish. 

6. Divide caramelized onions on top of each chicken breast. Sprinkle shredded cheese on top and bake for 20-25 minutes in the oven (or more, depending on the thickness of your chicken breasts), until fully cooked and cheese is bubbly. Then broil for 2 minutes to crisp up the cheese. Garnish the French onion chicken casserole with fresh chopped parsley and serve immediately with steamed vegetables or cauliflower rice. Enjoy!

Notes:

  • You can prepare the caramelized onion ahead of time, and just assemble the casserole at the last minute before baking.
  • You can flavor up the french onion with a dash of white wine, sherry or balsamic vinegar to deglaze the pan.
  • The cooking time will depend on the thickness of your chicken breasts.
  • Go easy on the salt because French onion and cheese are already salty.

I caramelized the onions in butter and 1/4 cup white wine (the good stuff, too!) instead of chicken broth. I used a mixture of mozzarella and gruyere but used more gruyere then the mozzarella.

It turned out GREAT! Michael and I both loved it and wouldn’t change a thing! It was so delicious and the melted cheese (slightly browned from the broiler) was so so good!

I had one chicken breast with the cheese and onion mixture and a side salad with French dressing. Delicious dinner! I will definitely make this again! It’s a keeper!

I suggest you make this recipe asap!

Also, Friday night I made this recipe: BARELY-BLANCHED BROCCOLI SALAD WITH FETA AND FRIED ALMONDS.

It was delicious! I also recommend it.