What is it that kills me when I attempt to lose weight, focus, or get on a diet? Idle snacking, ParticularlyMy job. I won’t eat any snacks during the day. I’ll feel too full and grouchy at night, especially after the wife goes bed. If I have to snack and forget to bring one, it’s when the vending machines get jammed or worse, I’ll go to the work cafe to get something. Actual menu item (and remember, I work for a company making cardiac defibrillators). Fries with chili and sour-cream cheese. Fortunately, I have not been. That Far, but there’s nothing better.
Healthy snacks are what I need. You need to slow down and control your appetite. Although pretzels might be acceptable, if you eat too many (as I can easily do), the calories add up. I feel hungry even if I eat less than what most people call a “serving”, which is why I don’t eat as much. Baby carrots work well for me. However, after trying them, my mouth started itching and I had to stop eating the bag. This is quite common. So I decided to go to TJ’s before work to find another snack option.
First, Trader Joe’s Natural Turkey Jelly. Jerky was recommended to me by coworkers as it is low in calories and lean. I have enjoyed a few bites of the jerky, especially after someone brought in some venison. This was fantastic, amazing stuff. Overall, I enjoyed jerky but was not sold by the excessive sodium. TJ’s might be changing my mind. There are many varieties, including turkey, beef, and salmon. I choose the base turkey model for its simplicity.
The bag was $5.49 which is low to mid-priced for a four-ounce bag. The bag is actually quite good. The chunk sizes are manageable and the texture is not as stringy as jerky. It’s a great thing for my teeth. It’s very mild in flavor, mostly meaty, with a slight sweet-tang and not all salty. You can actually compare the nutritional information to, say, Target Market PantryThis brand is a staple in our office and has half the sodium. It’s not a huge difference, but it’s still an improvement. The bag is a great way to get some protein and the taste, although it’s delicious, doesn’t make me want to eat the whole thing. After grabbing a few bites, Melanie (aka the jerky enabler), agreed and gave it “about four.” It sounds right to me.
While I would love it to be different, jerky is not enough for me. It was a great idea to have a healthy raw vegetable that I could eat, but not make my teeth sore. I bought a bag of Trader Joe’s Sugar Snap Peas. It may seem difficult to believe that someone would review a bag of sugar snappeas with a particular brand. Well, easy. Take a look at the photo of the sugar snap peas in a Post-It. The larger one, located in the middle of the picture, is from my Trade Joe’s bag. It was $2.99 for 12 ounces. That’s about $4 per pound. The shorter, more agile guy in the upper left corner? This is from the local grocery shop that claims to have the best produce. I purchased a few small pieces the night before at $7 !!!). a pound.
Although I have had my fair share of problems with TJ’s produce, in all aspects, TJ has won the battle of competing snowpeas. Melanie saw me and was somewhat surprised. The peas from TJ’s were firmer and fresher than the peas I bought at the other store. They also tasted better, had more crunch, and were larger than the pathetic, sad-faced guys. The celery hearts were also very fresh and tasty. They cost $2.79 here compared to $4 elsewhere. I have enough baby carrot bags to know that TJs is a great value and at least comparable quality. TJ’s may have won some of my produce-buying business, at the very least until it’s back to farmer’s market and home vegetable gardens. C’mon, spring.
Small changes can make a big difference. This year, I have already lost a few pounds by making small changes such as eating healthier snacks at work, drinking more water and watching what the serving sizes are. Yes, exercise is important. That’s why I’m working hard to get in shape again. c25k.* But enough about me. TJ’s: What is your favorite healthy product? Leave a comment below and I’ll be all ears!
Bottom line: Trader Joe’s Natural Turkey Jerky is 8 out of 10 Golden Spoons
Bottom line: 9 out 10 Golden Spoons for Trader Joe’s Sugar Snap Peas
* Believe me, if you want a good exercise program to get yourself into shape, do c25k. It was something I did a while back and I am re-doing it to gain speed and get back in good 5k shape. ….A fat, slow, flatfooted man like me can run 5k. I also ran 10k once. There are many apps that can help you.