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March 21st, 2018

Living On F-Factor: Passover Survival Guide

You asked, we listened. Follower question of the week.

Q: Passover is coming, and my go-tos like GGs and high fiber cereals are NOT K for P, how do I do F-Factor for 8 days without?! 

A: F-Factor is NOT a cracker diet, but rather a high-fiber, high-protein diet. There is absolutely no need to fear giving up your go-to high-fiber products for the holidayeverything that you need to know in order to prepare for Passover and live the F-Factor way through the holiday, is right here!

We heard the panic and we are always here to help! Basic information, key tips, product recommendations and recipes for the joyous holiday are right hereLet’s begin. 

THE BASICS:

There are two main fears weighing heavily on F-Factor followers when it comes to Passover: constipation and weight gain. To tackle this issue, let’s take a step back or two. Aside from aiding in regular bowel movements, one of the best benefits of dietary fiber is that it keeps you feeling fuller longer. Feeling full and satiated prevents you from snacking excessively or mindlessly overeating, which in turn leads to LASTING weight loss (which, in case you forgot, is why F-Factor is the best diet in the world!). Although high-fiber crackers and F-Factor 20/20 Fiber/Protein powders are among the most quintessential foods for living the F-Factor Way, that’s not to say that F-Factor is BY ANY MEANS just a cracker diet… or a powder diet. F-Factor is a lifestyle and a high-fiber, high-protein eating plan. While these foods are helpful for meeting your fiber needs without making too much of a negative impact on your daily net carb allotment, your success on F-Factor is absolutely not reliant on eating high-fiber crackers, high-fiber cereals, or even F-Factor 20/20 Fiber/Protein powders. Thus, you can continue living the F-Factor Way through the 8 days of Passover without any of these products, and you will survive (of course, if you want to, you are more than welcome to continue with any of these)! There are plenty of delicious, great sources of fiber that are #FFACTORAPPROVED and #CHAMETZFREE. Our top product picks, recipes, and tips are included below. 

KEY 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 in to 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 caloriesso 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 alongfiber 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.

PRODUCT PICKS: 

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 Bran 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, 5g of fiber and 17g 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.

Zen Basil Seeds – Similar to chia seeds, but even higher in fiber! These little seeds can be used to make jam, pudding or truffles (like these!). Learn more about why we love these fiber-packed seeds here.
Psyllium Husk Powder – Kosher for Passover, gluten-free, and super high in fiber, this is a great ingredient to use this week. It adds great texture to baked goods. Use it to make crackers, crepes, or muffins.

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!

Gefen Hearts of Palm Spaghetti – What’s marinara sauce without spaghetti? Gefen also makes a Kosher for Passover hearts of palm “spaghetti”. Because it’s just hearts of palm, it’s a free food on F-Factor too!

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 that full-fat cheeses are just thatfull 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 also comes in single-serving portions, which makes portion control a breeze. 

Coconut FlourCoconut 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.

Flaxseed Meal – Flaxseed meal is another high-fiber flour replacement that is Kosher for Passover. Use it to make muffins or bagels, or add to yogurt.

TOP F-FACTOR PASSOVER-FRIENDLY RECIPES:

BREAKFAST RECIPESSOUP RECIPESMAIN DISHESSIDES/APPETIZER RECIPESSWEETS

Remember Passover is the holiday where we commemorate our freedom from enslavement in Egypt. Use this holiday as inspiration to be your best self! Remember that everything in our life is a blessing and that we should always be grateful for what we have. 

 Chag Sameach from the F-Factor team!