Sunday, September 11, 2016

Let's talk about food

Whether it's actually true or not, I like to think of myself as someone who is willing and open to try new things...and I find this is helpful when it comes to nutrition because a person can't get from breakfast to dinner these days without some new diet study coming out.

For the first twenty-five or so years of my life, I didn't pay much attention to what I ate. My parents were health-conscious and fed my brother and me well when we were kids. But when left to my own devices, I primarily lived off of frozen dinners, saltines, and Sprite.

At some point that changed; I don't know how or why. (Probably just age, but it's not important to our story, so it doesn't matter.) And at some point after that, it changed a lot. For instance, for many years now, aside from alcohol, I have not drunk anything but water and decaffeinated tea. Does this make me a better person than you? Who knows? But it certainly makes me a boring person to go to Starbucks with.

Eating something terrible, no doubt
For about two years, not long ago, I switched to being mostly vegetarian. Then I read that eating meat was really good for you, so I started eating it again. Then I read that some fat is also good for you, so I stopped buying things that were "low-fat." Then I read that juicing was awesome for you, so for a year and a half, I juiced once a day. Then I read that juicing strips all the fiber out of fruits and vegetables, so I reverted back to mainly eating whole produce. Then I read that carbohydrates are horrible for you, so I started counting carbs and reducing my pasta and cereal intake.

And then, last weekend, over the Labor Day holiday, I realized just how sick and tired I was of most of the things that I eat, since I have a tendency to eat the same things over and over until I read something that tells me I'm doing irreparable and permanent damage to myself by eating those very things (at which point I start eating other things). So I ventured into the world of food blogging, and what I found was that there are a hell of a lot of bloggers out there who are freaking hardcore when it comes to their food.

I was looking for something new to eat for breakfast and for lunch, and I stuck to Whole30 and Paleo recipes, not because I think either of these diets are such a good idea, but because they were uncharted waters for me. Not being interested in adhering to them every day for every meal didn't mean they didn't have something to offer.

So after finding a couple of promising recipes, I whipped up a batch of egg-sausage-and-tomato things to heat up for breakfast each morning, and I made a chicken salad with avocado (instead of mayo) to wrap in lettuce (instead of bread) for my lunch. This took hours. It was more time than I've spent in the kitchen in one go in my life. I felt deep pride by the time I was done. And everything smelled delicious. But unfortunately, everything did not taste delicious. Truth be told, everything tasted a bit like cardboard. That is, of course, the number one pitfall of super-healthy eating: much of what tastes the best in our modern world is exactly that which does the most damage to us. I choked both things down all week, but I'm not sure I'm up for putting in the effort to make those particular recipes regulars in my rotation.

In conclusion, and in summary, my life did not change with my diet this past week, but it was worth the experiment. The information available about food is infinite, and it's contradictory, and it's constantly changing. Just when I think I'm doing well, I find out I'm not.

So, as with all things in life, in nutrition I aim to adhere to the mantra of everything in moderation. 

Happy eating. And good luck out there...


  1. I know what you mean... when I used to be a sports addict my trainer wanted me to learn "all" about nutrition and the right eating and training.
    So I did as I was told. And was frustrated from all the different information you could find.

    I ended up eating lots of salad and protein.

    But after (due to falling very ill) I stopped the sport and somehow fell of the eating track I am a bad eater. Currently I am having a sugar spree. Horribly unhealthy.... lol


    1. It happens!! It's so much easier to fall into bad eating habits than to keep good ones.

      My friends and I often go out to eat when we want to hang out, and it's almost impossible to eat well at a restaurant. And we have vending machines at work where you can get full-sized candy bars for twenty-five cents...there are so many days when I think I "deserve" sugar, ha!

      Anyway, I'm trying!! If nothing else, it was fun to experiment with different foods, even if these happened to not taste all that good. :) If I suddenly find a magic way to eat healthily and not miss the bad stuff I'll let you know... ;)

    2. oh, yes please let me know.

      I get a spree of healthy eating, toohoo. Then suddenly I love eating fruits for snacks and salad for lunch and dinner... aaaalll the healthy stuff. But if it not comes I just can't force myself anymore.

      So I am now at a sort of "ah well... whatever" thing. And try to outsmart myself by not putting any pressure on me to eat a certain way. LOL

    3. I think that's wise. :) As I said in the entry, I really do think as long as you do things in moderation, you aren't harming yourself too much! I just (like you) put way too much pressure on myself sometimes. :)