I am very excited to start a wonderful journey with you about cooking and baking low carb.

I love to cook, and with a family of five it has been interesting to discover ways to keep things fresh. Today, our children are grown and off on their own journeys, so learning to downsize and create meals for two has been a challenge.

As we get older, our bodies change, and as I look for ways to keep my husband and I healthy, eating has become a big part of the puzzle.

My husband and I decided to change the way we eat, to help with weight management and to keep our cholesterol levels in check. I know you may be thinking, “Oh, another fad diet,” but learning how to eat low carb is not a diet, it is a life style and learning how to adapt to a new meal plan that supports healthy living.

I have learned so much along my journey and I am very excited to share what I have discovered.

An easy way to start is by reading food labels at the grocery store.

My husband comes from an Italian family, so pasta was always a large part of every dinner. While pasta is delicious, it is also a carb-load that can zap energy levels and pack on pounds.

But a few easy trade-outs can save the taste of your favorite dishes. Did you know you can substitute zucchini and spaghetti squash for pasta? I have a great spiral slicer that I bought on Amazon that has different attachments that lets me make my own version of pasta with veggies. If you like eggplant, it’s a great substitute, too.

On the subject of sugar, there’s so much to say, and we’ll get to that down the road.

Getting to the Good Stuff

Desserts are my favorite part of any meal, so finding a way to make them low-carb was an important goal. I needed to find a way to create my favorite desserts without all the sugar.

Today, I substitute regular baking flour with almond flour, soy flour and Carbquik, most of which you can find at your local grocery store or on Amazon. They are lower in carbohydrates than regular flours and taste great.

With the holiday season quickly approaching, sharing low-carb alternatives with your family and friends can be a great way to give those you love the gift of delicious eating without all the guilt. To introduce them to your journey, try these hard-to-resist cream puffs. Yes, I said cream puffs. They are low carb, easy to make and crazy good.

(Maureen Hilts is a home cook. She is not certified in low-carb cooking. Her recipes are from her own collection and have been taste-tested by her family and friends. The information she shares in her column is the result of her personal journey. Contact Maureen at lowcarbmtngirl@yahoo.com, or follow her on Facebook at lowcarbmountaingirl.)

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