Putting My Mom on a Diet: Week 6 Meal Plan and Weigh-In

For new readers, here’s a brief refresher: I’m putting my mom on a diet, here is the plan I designed for her, and here are her weekly updates: week 1week 2week 3week 4week 5. Welcome!

Week 6 is behind us, friends. Here’s what we’ve been up to on the diet front:

 

Monday

Breakfast: 1 cup Uncle Sam Original Cereal (250) + 3/4 cup 1% milk (75) = 325 

corned beef wrap

1 Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Lavash Bread (100) + 2 ounces Dietz & Watson corned beef (60) + 1 Laughing Cow Light Garlic and Herb Cheese Wedge (35) + 2 teaspoons mustard (10) + lettuce and tomato (15) = 220

+ 2 cups green grapes (120) = 340

Snack: 12 almonds (~80) + 1 ounce raisins (100) = 180

steak peas and carrots

Dinner: 4 ounces marinated and grilled steak (leftover from Sunday night, 240 for the steak alone + 40 for the marinade = 280) + 1 1/2 cups carrot fries (recipe in this post = 150) + 2/3 cup steamed green peas (80) = 510

Dessert: 1 Skinny Cow Cookies ‘n Cream Sandwich (150)

Total: 1490

….

 

Tuesday

Breakfast: 2 cups Cascadian Farm Honey Nut O’s (200) + 1 cup 1% milk (110) = 310

chicken lunch

Lunch: 5 ounces marinated and grilled chicken (150 for chicken alone + 30 for marinade = 180) + 2/3 cup steamed corn (80) + 2/3 cup steamed green beans and almonds (1/2 of 1 of one Green Giant Simply Steam package = 60) = 320

Snack: 12 almonds (~80) + 1 ounce raisins (100) = 180

breakfast for dinner

Breakfast for dinner: 1 egg (70) pan fried over-hard in 1 teaspoon olive oil (30) + 2 slices hickory smoked bacon (70) + 1 1/2 cups homemade hash brown potatoes (200) = 370

Dessert: 1 Skinny Cow Salted Caramel Pretzel Frozen Candy Bar (160)

Total: 1340

….

 

Wednesday

bacon eggs

Breakfast: 2 eggs, scrambled (140) in 1 teaspoon olive oil (30) + 2 slices bacon (70) = 240

ham sandwich

Lunch: 1/2 ham and cheese sandwich: 1 slice Pepperidge Farm 100% Whole Wheat Bread (110) + 3 ounces sliced deli ham (90) + 1 Laughing Cow Light Garlic & Herb Cheese Wedge (35) + 2 celery stalks, chopped into sticks (15) + 2 carrots, chopped into sticks (50) + 1 1/2 cups green grapes (90) = 390

Snack: 12 almonds (80) + 1 ounce raisins (100) = 180

chicken and broccoli

Dinner: Creamy chicken n’ broccoli (pretty much the same recipe as the one on Saturday night in this post plus extra chicken = 450)

Dessert: Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwich (150)

Total: 1410

….

 

Thursday

Breakfast: 1 Ezekiel sprouted grain cinnamon raisin English muffin (160) spread with 1 teaspoon butter (30) + 3 slices bacon (100) = 290

cooked veggie salad

Lunch: 4 ounces marinated and grilled chicken (120 for chicken alone + 30 for marinade = 150) + 1/2 cup green peas (60)  + 1/2 cup corn (60) + 2/3 cup chopped, steamed broccoli (~50) + 1/2 cup chopped cherry tomatoes (~30) + 2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese (50) + 2 tablespoons finely chopped basil (0) = 400

Snack: 2 cups green grapes (120)

Dinner: 24 almonds (160) + 2 ounces raisins (200) = 360

*Andie note: Mom drove down to Cape Cod straight from work on Thursday night, with plans to stay overnight to do decorating work. “You’ve got to stop for dinner on the way,” I told her. “I will, Francie,” she said. “Maybe I’ll get a burger without the bun.” Instead, she ate both of the emergency trail mix bags (that I had stuffed in her purse that morning) in the car. Sometimes, worrying about the whens and wheres and how much-es of my mother’s eating reminds me that it’s possible that mother-daughterhood involves a constant shuffling of roles.

Total: 1170

….

 

Friday

No Breakfast

Lunch: Can’t call this a meal, but: ~2 ounces (1/2 cup) pistachios (450)

*Andie note: Still down in Cape Cod, Mom did not eat breakfast and worked straight through lunch. She did, however, stop to pick up a bag of pistachios to munch on. She told me, “I think the bag said that it had 5 servings and that each one was like 150 calories, but I only ate maybe three-quarters of it.” While it’s not as balanced as I’d have liked, it’s something. And something is better than nothing. Also, isn’t it sometimes jarring when you recognize just how few nuts it takes to equal the number of calories in a full, voluminous meal?

hot dogs and beans

Dinner: 2 extra-large all-natural hot dogs (Pearl brand, 300 calories each = 600) + 1/3 cup Bush’s Boston recipe baked beans (100) + 2 cups spinach, red pepper, and cucumber salad (30) + 1 tablespoon Ken’s Light Caesar Dressing (40) = 770

*Andie note: Mom called me from the road on her drive home from the Cape and begged me to have hot dogs for dinner. I, in all my pushover-y-ness, knowing how little she’d eaten earlier, said OK. She bought these Pearl brand hot dogs herself, which are monsters size-wise. On any other day than this, I would have served her only one, but for the sake of more calories, today it had to be two.

Dessert: 1 homemade oatmeal raisin bar (about 2″ x 3″ = 250)

*Andie note: Mom went to a party after dinner and this sweet treat, along with a 0-calorie Fresca, was what she had.

Total: 1470

….

 

Saturday

Breakfast: 1 banana (100) + 1/4 cup pistachios (200) = 300

*Andie note: Mom decided this one on her own, and took it with her in a fluster as she rushed out the door to work.

Out to lunch: 8 ounce bunless burger (no cheese, assuming it was made using 85% lean ground been = 480) + 2 tablespoons ketchup (40) + 2 cups steamed and lightly buttered carrots (carrots alone are ~100 + 50 for 1/2 tablespoon butter = 150) = 670

pork chops and grilled carrots

Dinner: 4 ounce marinated pork chop (used the sesame-soy-ginger marinade recipe in this post;160 for pork alone since pork is 40 calories per ounce + ~20 for marinade = 180) + 5 medium carrots, sliced and grilled (125 for carrots alone since 1 medium carrot is ~25 calories + 30 for 1 teaspoon of olive oil = 155) + 1 1/2 cups roasted broccoli (~100) = 435

Make the grilled carrots: Preheat your gas grill to medium. Slice 1 to 2 pounds of carrots vertically into long, thin strips (for thick carrots, you’ll want to quarter the carrot; for thinner/regular ones, slicing in half is fine). Toss the carrots with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon salt. Grill until fork-tender and beginning to blacken, about 15 minutes, flipping (really just moving them around–do your best) halfway.

Dessert: Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwich (150)

Total: 1555

….

 

Sunday

Brunch: 2 cups Cascadian Farm Honey Nut O’s (200) + 1 cup 1% milk (110) = 310

Lunch: None, really. Peach (70) + handful of grapes (60) = 130

burger and potato salad

Dinner: 5 ounces 85% lean ground beef burger (300) + 1 ounce American cheese (100) + 2 tablespoons ketchup (40) + 2/3 cup homemade potato salad (250) + 1 ear corn on the cob (100) + 1 1/2 cup mixed salad (20) + 2 teaspoons Ken’s Light Caesar Dressing (~30) = 840

*Andie note: This dinner was part of a family get-together. Normally, I’d prefer that we use at least 90% lean ground beef, but, well, what’s that Rolling Stones lyric again? “You can’t always get what you wa-ant…”

Dessert: Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwich (150)

Total: 1420

….

 

 

Week 6 Weigh-In:

Starting Weight: 210

Week 1 Weight: 201.4 (down 8.6)

Week 2 Weight: 199.4 (down 2.0)

Week 3 Weight: 199 (down 0.4)

Week 4 Weight: 196 (down 3)

Week 5 Weight: 194.4 (down 1.6)

Week 6 Weight: 193 (down 1.4)

Total Pounds Lost: 17

 

Mom’s Week 6 Thoughts:

“Hello everyone,

As always thank you for your total support and wonderful encouragement, which keeps me going week to week!!!   I have to say that I really am beginning to understand Andrea’s concept about eating. She used to tell me that nothing is as good as the first bite and I begged to differ, but now I get what she meant.

I can finally go to the grocery store without feeling so stressed out and ready to buy all my binge foods. I now run to the healthy food aisle and grab my two absolute favorites: Cascadian Farm Honey O’s cereal and Ezekial  English muffins (love these two).  Okay, I have also developed a big crush on any and all Skinny Cow Ice Cream treats.  My gosh I can have chocolate and ice cream for only 150 calories and think I just had Haagen Dazs.  There was a point when I started this diet when I truly believed that my days of having sweets were over, but nooooo!

I am happy to say that instead of frequenting Home Goods (my favorite store), lately I have been hitting TJ Maxx.  I used to avoid this place except for their beautiful silver jewelry because nothing that I liked ever fit me.  Yesterday I went shopping and was amazed that I could wear a size large and a size 16W in pants ( I barely fit into an 18W before and was even at times struggling to fit into a 20W).  I have even started wearing all my jewelry that I didn’t before because I didn’t need the extra bulk.

You would be amazed at what Andrea is giving me to eat.  I have great meals–as you can see from the pictures–and am always satisfied.  In the beginning, I would just go to bed early to avoid feeling like I had to sneak into the kitchen when Andrea wasn’t looking.  Realistically, though, I work 10 hour shifts and am away so much from the house that I could eat things without Andrea seeing me but who would I be hurting but myself?  I really like the portion sizes and I think the only reason this plan is working for me is because Andrea made it all about “my foods that I like.”  I put this off for so long because I don’t like to deprive myself and I now know that I didn’t have too.   I am so grateful that Andrea started this with me now because failure was always my go-to.  To all of my friends out there who are overweight: hang in there and try this way of eating what you like in smaller portions. It has really improved my way of living and my self esteem.  I have lost 17 lbs and still have a way to go but you and I can do this and still have fun!!!  Great eating everyone! Oh, and try the Skinny Cow and oven roasted carrots.  When I muster up the guts I will take another picture of myself and you can judge for yourself!

-Maryellen”

 

*Andie note: I am working on making all of these weekly meal plans/recaps printable (without the pictures) for anyone who has asked. I aim to have them all done by Tuesday! Thanks for sticking with us :)

Comments

  1. Sony says

    Great job!
    Tomorrow I am starting the same plan you started 6 weeks ago. I am excited and nervous- I have never dieted with a plan that looks this easy. I normally have a small list of items I can eat. Always brown or green and never include diary! lol

    Good luck Maryellen!

  2. Chelsea says

    I am so inspired by this. I am 25 and about 25lbs overweight. Seeing your mom through this process, and my own mom through hers, has encouraged me to become very serious about how many calories I am taking in. The two most important things I’ve learned are #1 Every bite has a number and #2 I can feel fuller on less if I choose wisely.

    I love that counting calories this way allows you to eat your favorite items. And because it is in smaller portions- the foods I love stretch even farther!!

    Thank you so much for allowing us to follow along this journey. You’re doing great Mary Ellen- I’m sure that picture will look amazing!

  3. Lisa says

    Good Morning Mary Ellen and Andie: Thank you for sharing your story! I look forward to having the meal plans. I read the posts over and over – and am trying to do similar. Keep up the great work. Lisa

  4. Claudia TN says

    Congratulations to your mom! She is doing great! While I haven’t followed your plan closely, I have been inspired to lose a few pounds as well. Looking forward to the printable plan. I started out making my own, but didn’t stick with it. Thank you so much for making your plan available to all.

  5. Christina says

    You are doing great MaryEllen! It’s wonderful to realize you don’t have to deprive yourself to lose weight and feel great about yourself!

  6. Sally says

    Andrea, I have been following along (on the blog in general, and now on your mom’s diet progress) for quite a while but haven’t commented till now. Such inspiring stories for both daughter and mother! This makes weight loss seem so do-able, and reinforces the fact that it’s a lifestyle change and not a diet that makes it happen. I think printables would be great. Thank you for putting it out there, and congratulations!

  7. Sharon says

    I am loving following the eating plan for your mom, Andie. What a great daughter you are to do this. Your mom is doing so well! Such a healthy way to lose. The Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Lavash Bread looks delicious. I’ve never seen it in stores here. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Tracey says

    Love the lunch pic posted: Lunch: 4 ounces marinated and grilled chicken (120 for chicken alone + 30 for marinade = 150) + 1/2 cup green peas (60) + 1/2 cup corn (60) + 2/3 cup chopped, steamed broccoli (~50) + 1/2 cup chopped cherry tomatoes (~30) + 2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese (50) + 2 tablespoons finely chopped basil (0) = 400
    Question, did you add a dressing? Or does the crumbled feta keep it moist?
    Thanks!

  9. HollyC says

    How awesome for both of you! My husband and I have been trying to eat healthier for awhile and we had both lost weight, then around Christmas, we kinda fell off the wagon and are struggling to get back to where we were. I’ve been saving your weekly meal plans, so printables would be so helpful. I’m not very good at counting calories either, so I’m hoping you’re numbers will inspire me to do better!! I wish I had a daughter to cook and count for me! 😉
    Good job Mary Ellen! Keep up the good work and inspiring all of us “out here”!

  10. Janet says

    I really appreciate the way you are both seeing this through! So many things we start and don’t finish. The detail and the stories are engaging, I even find myself worrying about you guys!

    I am very proud. – Is it weird to be proud of two people I have never met? – Regardless, thank you both for sharing. I look forward every week.

  11. Silvia says

    Congratualations!!! And, again, thank you. I was actually up last night waiting to see if Andie would post the week assessment. And she did! I’m also losing weight as well so learning about your experience is so inspiring to me! Plus, Andie’s food journaling, and special pages on “what X calories day looks like” has also helped me envision my own intake.

  12. says

    Great recipes Andie! I think the presentation makes a huge difference and you are certainly a master of that. Makes it so enticing to eat. And knowing you made it gives us the incentive to try it. I love the baked carrot fries. What a lovely idea.

    But no mention of what your mom is drinking. Coffee, Tea, Juice, green tea? Perhaps some Ceylon Cinnamon Tea to wash it all down? I could send you a couple of cans of Ceylon Cinnamon Tea. That will help your mom with the digestion and keep the hunger pangs away. Well, you know how to email me if you want the tea for your mom.

  13. Jessica says

    Andie,

    I made the carrot fries last night and loved them so much, I’m going to make the rest of the bag tonight. Those little buggers really shrunk in the oven, so I was left a bit short-changed yesterday.

    I’ve noticed that you cook your mom’s eggs in olive oil. Do you think your mom would enjoy them less or be less full is you simply used no-calorie cooking spray? Or is the oil a replacement for the butter she would normally use? I was just wondering because, for me, unless the oil really affects the flavor of the food, I save the calories for something else. The only real “healthy fat” that helps with fullness for me is peanut butter!

  14. Noel Brannum says

    Hi Andie,
    I’ve been following and enjoying your Blog for a long time now, especially with your mom’s diet. She and I are so alike in age, ht, wt and body build. She is such and inspiration and so lucky to have you as a support system and chef. I started about the same time but have fell off the wagon!!! Ready her weekly progress at least has kept my mind in tack and not totally giving up. Your doing great Maryellen!!!!! Congrats!!! Your going to be one Hot Mama!!! LOL! Have a Great Day! Noel

  15. ro says

    oh my goodness, I think I love your mother. And you write about her with such love and kindness–it’s so touching.

  16. says

    I honestly can’t remember which rabbit hole I followed that led me to your blog, but I am so thankful for the path. I love the relationship between you and your Mom. Your meal plans are simple, healthy, practical, and delicious. I’ve made several of your salad combos for my family to rave reviews. Can’t wait to try every recipe. I am so encouraged by your Mom’s success and so very grateful to you! Thanks so much!

  17. Debbie says

    I am enjoying this series so much … you are a great daughter!

    May I ask what scale you use? Every household scale that I have tried gives differing measurements (within minutes! I can step off and then back on again and be up to a half pound-pound different, and I think that I’m using the scale correctly). But you are relying on your scale for accuracy within a tenth of a pound! What do you use?

  18. Christine says

    I too am absolutely terrible at rembering to feed myself and I work in a restaurant! During this past busy week I found myself only having one small meal a day but I wasn’t really hungry even when I was eating. I just knew I had to eat something!

    • Janet says

      Oh my this cracks me up! I don’t think I have EVER forgotten to eat. I can’t even imagine it. Wish I was blessed with this problem!

  19. Rachael says

    Awesome job MaryEllen, and awesome prep work there Andie :) Really making me want to get my act together now!

  20. Christine D says

    You are doing a great job! remember it’s a marathon, not a sprint. I’ve lost 49 lbs myself since February doing weight watchers and hitting the treadmill everyday. I love this journey we are all on together! Christine

  21. R says

    Loving these udpates and the food photos!! The food looks FANTASTIC and not ‘diet’ deprived food at all. Congratulations. Looking forward to the next update & love the sharing of these recipes. Some of the recipes/food look so unique … like the ‘broccoli chicken’ dish

  22. says

    I absolutely LOVE following your journey, Andie’s Mom. You are very real – recognizing cravings or missing meals – and I find a great amount of inspiration from this process you’re sharing. It’s really easy to ‘cave’, and it’s harder to remember that the weight didn’t come on overnight, so it’s not going to come off that quickly either.

    I, personally, started a weight-loss journey last September. I joined a gym and followed a pretty strict nutrition plan. I’ve had moments when I caved to have ‘just one bite’ that turned into the whole piece of cake or when I know a salad is a smart choice (and I have everything in the fridge), but I don’t want it, so my dinner consists of cheese and carrots with hummus. (Still not a terrible choice, just not enough for a meal.) I’ve also had moments that turned into days…entire weekends when I decided having a few beers and chips and other snacks would be fine…just to feel worse come Monday. So, I very much relate to the set-backs…and have again re-committed to my health (going to the gym and making smart nutritious choices!).

    Since starting my journey, I’ve lost 30 pounds. Had I been more diligent, I probably could’ve hit the 50 pound mark by now, but this is my journey, so I can’t feel bad about the progress I’ve made. I’m proud to to have come this far and am looking forward to reading about the rest of your journey. You’re doing GREAT!!!!!

    P.S. Isn’t it AMAZING when you try on a smaller size and it actually FITS?!?! Blew my mind! =)

  23. Sandy says

    Hello,

    I found a recipe of yours by accident and I am so happy I did. This 6 week plan is the best I have seen and look forward to following the plan. I just turned 70 and look forward to eating healthier and losing some weight! Thank you for all the time and effort you put into this project,
    you will certainly help many people!

  24. Sally says

    Always inspired by these posts. They make me crave real food and inspire me to create. I’m looking forward to the printable version!!

  25. Pat Allen says

    Annie, your mom is doing amazing and you are pretty amazing, too. I’m sure the support you are offering your mom is invaluable. You are doing half of the hard work – putting her meals together. I feel as I can follow this and lose weight, too. Congratulations to your mom, I wish her many more TJMaxx shopping sprees! Thank you for offering us overweight, overwhelmed ladies help with the menu.

    Pat

  26. Anne says

    Hey Andie, I am crazy about your mother through your eyes. She sounds like a hoot and very determined! I am sooooo proud of her. You go, Maryellen!!!!!!!! 17 lbs. is alot! Pat yourself on the back and Andie, you need to pat yourself on the back for being a GREAT daughter who has wonderful meals and great patience. Now, if only I had YOU to make my meals for me! LOL.

  27. Jessica says

    The food looks amazing and really yummy, I’m getting hungry looking at them. Having those great meals prepared would be such a huge help, not having to worry and stress over what you can and can’t eat. I think I’m going to give some of these a try this weekend. thanks!

  28. karen says

    I would love to have these menus. My daughter and I both are trying to eat healthier and lose weight.j
    Thank you, Karen

  29. Lissette Ramos says

    Just caught up on reading all six weeks and I’m amazed and wish I had you as my daughter to help me lose weight. Would love to have a copoy of the menus when you have them. I love your site and your mom is so lucky to have you help her. My daughter is 23 and I will be sharing this with her. She doesn’t need to lose weight (I do), but she has been venturing into eating healthy and you have some awesome recipes. Thank you so much for sharing with us. :)

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