Mission: Joyful Healthy Eating
Okay, I’ve finally decided (and if you read my Green Phone Booth post last week, you probably knew this was coming) it’s time to start really holding myself accountable for the line between wholesome unprocessed unhealthy foods and wholesom unprocessed healthy foods. The line between real food and faux-food has not been all that difficult for me, but separating the real-healthy from the real-full-of-empty-calories-this-is-why-I’m-carrying-around-this-butt continues to be a substantive challenge.
The early steps are being fairly straightforward–just suck it up and eat less, cut all empty foods, especially refined sugars and flours, from my diet for the first full week and keeping them extremely low for the following or so, and stop snacking. Straightforward, but difficult. I allowed myself one teaspoon of sugar for my one morning cup of coffee, and I allowed myself to suck on hard candies especially in the afternoon when I feel like I Just Have To Eat Something, and I allowed myself one inch-diameter very dark chocolate piece per day; if even that doesn’t serve to break the sugar addiction, I’ll go farther, but it’s seeming okay. I’m making friends with stevia. (A post for another day, once I’ve played with it more.) I’m cooking a small portion of the whole wheat pasta I can’t sell the family on on pasta night, and eating mine with large amounts of veggies instead of a small amount of sauce. I’m asking my husband, if he must eat ice cream, to do it when I’m not in the room, because that’ll kill me. When we eat pizza on naan bread, I’m sprinkling about 2 tbs. of grated cheese on mine instead of the 1/3 cup I might have done before.
What’s interesting so far: my cheese addiction appears to be, for the moment, broken. Cheese has been my biggest calorie-suck downfall, especially fresh mozzarella. I just love it, and can’t get enough, but I haven’t caught myself thinking of it longingly in the past couple of days, and yesterday I even tried one of the little samples of this delicious artisan Italian hard cheese and, while I enjoyed it, I didn’t feel even remotely tempted to buy it. I did feel more than remotely tempted to snitch another cube, but resistance was fairly easy. This is a good thing.
On the coffee front: For the first few days I was supplementing the meager spoonful of sugar with a sprinkle of stevia; by the end of the week the spoonful was plenty and the coffee tastes abundantly sweet with less sugar than I used to want. Also a good thing.
I’m making friends with fruit–yes, I know, higher sugar and calorie than veggies–as my go-to snack when I want something sweet, and carrots or cauliflower pieces when I want something not sweet. Fortunately, it’s Honeycrisp season, so delicious fruit is easy to come by.
And now I’m looking at recipes, trying to find things I can cook for myself or bring as healthy snacks at work for the days when the Oreos and Fritos my office mate has around for the teens who frequently hold meetings in our office space suddenly mysteriously grow voices and begin to call to me…those will be posts for hopefully the next few days.
The result of this experiment will honestly not be measurable, at least by bloggy empirical standards. I have not stepped onto a scale, and do not plan to. I will get a sense of clothing and its fit, but since it’s shift-t0-fall-clothes time anyway it won’t be much of a measurement either. I just want to see if I can be happy eating less food, and less still of the stuff I love that really isn’t good for me. The goal isn’t skinny, it’s happier and healthier–so we’ll see where this leads.