Journey from sloth and despair: the beginning
January sloth and despair
More of the Journey
Anyway. I spent a good month cleaning up my act this spring. I eliminated ALL fast food (ok - nearly all), just about all processed food (boxed, bagged, prepared, colored, canned, jarred, etc.), all simple carbs. (potatoes, pasta, bread), and even grains/legumes (oats, rice, beans, wheat, etc.). Also no alcohol or sodas (ok -- I did have the occasional Diet Pepsi. I'm no angel.).
I ate (nearly) solely fresh meat and fish (lean beef, chicken, turkey, seafood), and low-carb veggies and fruit for over a month. Why? Because I needed to break my attachment to food. I needed to see what my body was like without chemicals and junk in it.
It was SUPER difficult for the first several days. I went to bed dreaming of cake and wine and mac 'n' cheeze. I woke, craving cereal and donuts and danishes.
BUT: things I started noticing:
- My stomach was happier. It was peaceful (if you know what I mean)
- My skin was GREAT (with all the water I was consuming)
- I would wake,and feel less muzzy and fuzzy and gross
- My allergies improved (could be that the atmospheric allergens decreased, though)
- I started to really LOVE fish (tilapia and salmon are lovely!)
- Fruit became a delicious dessert, especially strawberries
- I totally stopped craving fast food and high-fat snacks
- Diet Pepsi became a treat (one glass, with ice) rather than sustenance
Things I noticed:
- My body likes pure meats better than processed (sausage, bacon, lunch meats). I know this because I had a few stomach aches AND I'd feel kind of grody after eating a salad with chopped lunchmeat and bacon
- Avocados are WONDERFUL, no matter how high-fat
- Cherries are good for me
- Diet Pepsi is still not that great for me. I feel weirdly chemical-ish after drinking much of it
- Alcohol now gives me a gross feeling the next day. Even just one glass. Sigh.
- Real cream (whipped, with just a tiny bit of sugar) is terrific on berries as a dessert. Just a bit. And I don't care if it IS high-fat. It's deelish. And doesn't make me feel gross like CoolWhip does. My mouth doesn't feel all slimy afterwards.
- Whole, raw almonds are a fantastic snack.
- My body NEEDS lots of water. No matter what.
- Triscuits are grossly slimy feeling, and Pringles? EW.
This has been amazingly enlightening.
Some questions I had:
- Is it more expensive to eat "whole-ish-ly"? Not that I've noticed. Pre-packaged foods are fairly expensive, and fast food is too. I buy a bag of frozen tilapia fillets ($9/12 of them), a bag of frozen turkey patties ($8/12 patties) (just ground turkey, pre-portioned), and lots of veggies/fruit, and maybe a buy one get one free steak, and I'm set for the week. I buy almonds on sale, and lemons/limes by the bag.
- Is it hard to dine out at restaurants? Well, kind of. Depending on where you go. We went to an amusement park, and UGH. But I did find a restaurant that had a big salad. However, the protein available was chicken strips (breaded). But still, could have been worse. At most restaurants (not crappy ones) I can order grilled protein (chicken, steak, fish) with veggies. I just ask for no butter or sauce. I ignore the breadbasket, and request no croutons/bread/junk on the plate. Mexican places are excellent, because I can order fajitas with no tortillas (with extra lettuce), and make a fabulous salad. I even have some guacamole. No margaritas, though.
- Do I end up cooking twice to accommodate my family? Sometimes. But mostly, I just make them additional sides (potatoes, pasta, breads), and they eat my healthy stuff PLUS the other stuff.
- Do I feel like I'm obsessing about food? Kind of. But I realized that I already was focused on food. "Can I get away with eating pizza?" and "what will I make for dinner" and "what kind of martini" and so on. Now, it's just the opposite direction. "How can I make this a clean meal?" or "Will they be able to make this without breading?" and so on.
I don't want to be all religious about this. All fanatical. But something needed to happen. I needed to clean up my act. I've done it! I have no illusions. I"m going to eat pizza again. I'm going to eat cake and drink wine. I love tortillas and bread. I do. But ... I really needed a re-set.