I recently visited the New York Office’s of F-Factor. I met with Samantha Hass, RN, CDN, and someone who keeps kosher. We discussed people’s fears of diet and Pesach. She thinks it’s the perfect time to follow a high fiber, mostly plant-based, protein diet. She also suggests journaling your food, drink plenty of water and flavor it with fruits and vegetables and exercise as much as possible. And, she encourages everyone to plan meals ahead, stay hydrated and don’t make food the center of the holidays. She, along with the team at F-Factor developed a plan for all.
TIPS FOR F-FACTOR SUCCESS THROUGH PASSOVER:
Just because there are Kosher-for-Passover versions of breads, pastas, and a smorgasbord of other products does NOT mean that you should eat them. Regular breads and pastas may be off limits for the Passover holiday, but for the most part, they’re off limits in your diet anyway, so there is no need to replace them with highly processed substitutes. Passover cookies, cakes, and snacks are often made with matzo meal and potato starch, which are high in carbs and low in fiber, and traditional Passover foods are often packed with oil, making them very high in fat and calories. Don’t give into the hoopla of such holiday foods. Instead, use this 8 day holiday as a chance to recalibrate your diet and make good, clean choices.
Incorporate even more high fiber vegetables and fruits into your daily meals and snacks. High fiber vegetables prepared simply (steamed, raw, or grilled/roasted without excess oil) are FREE FOODS on F-Factor, so fill up to your heart’s content. They also provide you with some fiber, but you need to eat a lot of them to for the fiber to add up–1 cup of kale has 2g of fiber, for example, so a salad can have 2-3. The good news is that despite being nutrient dense, they’re very low in calories—so don’t be afraid to load your plate up. Year-round, Step 1 of The F-Factor Diet allows for 1 serving of fruit per day. During Passover, because of the lack of high-fiber carbs (i.e crackers and cereal), it is OKAY to have an additional serving of fruit per day.
HYDRATE. As always, drink plenty of water! Aim for 3 liters per day to help keep you feeling full and things moving along—fiber needs water to work it’s magic, after all.
Journal. Writing down what you eat will keep you accountable for your actions, leading to more successful weight loss or maintenance.
We searched high and low, far and wide, and even sent our resident kosher RD, Samantha Hass, out to the most obscure Kosher supermarkets in the area to find the best product options for you. Here are our top K for P product picks:
High-Fiber Matzos – Matzah is notorious for backing us up. To minimize that effect, and to stay true to the principals of F-Factor, you want to go with high-fiber matzahs whenever possible. To date, the highest fiber options we have found are Osem High Fiber Matzo and Jerusalem High Fiber Matzos—both of which have 7g fiber per piece. Made from whole wheat flour, wheat bran, and water (similar to actual GG Bran Crispbreads) just piece of either brand has 120 calories, 18g net carb and 7g of fiber (and would be journaled as 25g carb, 7g fiber). If you can’t find either of those, Yehuda Light Whole Wheat Matzo is a satisfactory alternative. Yehuda has the same ingredients as the Osem brand matzo, but contains more flour and less wheat bran, which brings the fiber content down to be lower than what we would usually recommend. However, with only 85 calories, 22g of carbs, 4g of fiber and 18g net carbs, it’s still better than standard plain matzos. Pair any of these options with some no sugar added Gefen tomato sauce and Tnuva light cheese (see below) and you have yourself an #FFactorApproved matzo pizza. For more on why we love high-fiber matzos, click here.
Chia Seeds – Not a specific Passover product, but these little seeds can go a long way during this holiday! Two tablespoons of chia seeds have approximately 10 grams of carbs, 10 grams of fiber and 6g of protein. Chia seeds expand with water in your stomach too, ensuring that you feel more full. These seeds are also rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acid. Use them sprinkled on Greek yogurt or to make our chia seed pudding recipe.
Gefen No Sugar Added Classic Marinara Pasta Sauce – This no sugar added tomato sauce is certified kosher for Passover and has a net carb of 5g. Compare that to Gefen’s Classic Tomato sauce which has 13g net carbs (basically a slice of white bread), and you almost have to have a matzo pizza party!
Tnuva Light Cheese – And to make those pizzas a reality, this cheese is the big cheese. There are three types (Edam, Swiss and Muenster). The reason cheese gets a bad rep is because full fat cheeses are just that—full of fat and calorically dense. But lower fat cheeses are lighter, great sources of protein and calcium. Tnuva has 3 light cheeses: an Edam, Swiss, and Muenster, each of which has 1/4 of the fat and 1/2 of the calories of the full fat versions. Add a slice to your omelet or make yourself a grilled matzo cheese. 1 slice, 60 calories, 0g carbs, 8g protein, 2.5g of fat.
Say Cheese Diet Cheesecake – Something for the sweet tooth, but not your bubbe’s cheesecake! These cheesecakes are available in 3 flavors: cappuccino, marble, and chocolate. 1 container has 95 calories, 5.5 grams of carbs, 8.5g of protein, making them a great guilt (and gilt)-free indulgence for the holidays. It actually contains more protein and less carbs than your average yogurt! It is also comes in single serving portions, which makes portion control a breeze.
Coconut Flour – Coconut flour is a versatile, gluten-free ingredient that packs 10g fiber and 6g protein per serving. During the holiday, it can be used in place of wheat flour and wheat bran, which are not Kosher for Passover. It’s also a great alternative to matzo meal, which contains 22g net carbs per quarter cup. Try it in pancake/waffle recipes or to make other baked goods. Please note: although coconut flour is suitable for Passover, Pereg Coconut Flour is one of the only options on the market that is certified Kosher for Passover.
New Tuscanini Products
This tomato sauce is a better alternative to pre-made sauces with less sugar and fats.
This balsamic vinegar is a perfect addition to dressings, and in recipes for fish, meats and vegetables.
Cooper’s Crumbs For Passover
Cooper’s Crumbs, is a breadcrumb alternative that is low in carbohydrates, gluten free, and high in protein. The nutritional benefits are only outweighed by its incredible taste. Natural breadcrumbs and clean eating are what we are all about. And, in several flavors, they are Kosher for Passover.
Kosher Pet Food
KOSHER-KEEPING PET OWNERS OF THE WORLD CAN NOW REJOICE AND MEOW A SIGH OF RELIEF, THANKS TO KOSHER PAWS, THE VERY FIRST OU CERTIFIED KOSHER FOR PESACH PET FOOD.
THEIR GREAT TASTING TURKEY OR CHICKEN OPTIONS CONTAIN NO PRESERVATIVES, NO ADDITIVES NO CHAMETZ OR GEBROKTS.
I brought you cleaning, storage, kitchen tools, decor, vacations, food, wines and recipes. Have a wonderful Pesach and I will see you in May.
Cindy Grosz can be reached at email@example.com