First, information got me:
I began watching documentaries, reading and talking to friends about health and food. "Food Matters" and "Forks over Knives" were well researched, fact-based (not sensationalist) looks at how diet impacts - and dictates - our health. Specifically, how plant-based foods aid our health, and how processed and animal based foods contribute to disease. It wasn't long before I became convinced. (Watch them and you'll see what I mean...) I wasn't ready though, to sell out and make the commitment of eating well. (I did mention that I LOVE chocolate, bread, meat and sugar, right?) I was not yet willing to give it up.
Then there was chip night...
Feeling the pressure to make a lifestyle change but not yet willing to actually DO it, I decided to console myself with a giant bag of chips and a mountain of yummy, yummy dip. I munched and crunched on those salty circles until the foil bag lay empty. I got to enjoy those chips the next day too - I felt full all the next day from those little liars. I thought they would make me feel better. They didn't.
I also got to enjoy those chips for the next month - I could see them everyday, resting as a soft pillowy addition to my waistline. Every glance in the mirror reminded me that the taste is not worth it!
I stared up at the menu above beeping tills, and chose a Big Mac. I hadn't had a McDonalds burger in years (usually I order a wrap), but the coupon convinced me. It went down tender, and oh-so good. Salty fries and a soda finished it off.
An hour later, I lay on the couch. We're talking fetal position, holding my stomach. It's not that the burger was bad - its only crime was being a burger; a greasy, salty, heavily processed food item that my body was not used to. But there on the couch, with a hard rock of remorse in my gut, and crying out 'why?!', I swore to never again eat another take out burger. It wasn't a difficult decision.
Now, dare I say, I've made the switch. Not all the way immediately - I mean, I had a quiche for lunch (animal based), and dipped chips in my hummus (Small amounts of chips - not a bag!!!) But, I am indeed convinced beyond inaction. It makes no sense to go on eating what makes me feel awful and will eventually contribute to disease.
After a month of eating well, I can tell you -I feel a whole lot better physically and mentally. I'll post on that later. I'll also post on how I'm not going totally hard-core or getting it perfect.
In the meantime...
Here's a peek at the evolution
of this starch-lover's eating habits:
2 years ago:
4-8 cups of coffee daily. Each contains 3 tsp of sugar. (2 years before that, it had been 4-6 tsp)
Daily chocolate break. (1/2 cup or more of chocolate chips, every afternoon with my coffee)
Meals = 50% meat, 50% white starch, and finishes with a baked dessert of some kind. (no veggies. ever.)
Snacks - cookies and muffins. (3-6 pieces per day)
End the day with chips and dip and diet pepsi
The last year:
2 cups of coffee daily. Each contains 1/2-1 tsp of brown sugar
Meals = 30% meat, 35% brown starch, 30% vegetables. (no dessert usually)
Snacks = crackers/cheese, homemade granola bars. 1-3 pieces per day.
End the day with popcorn. and diet pepsi
But this month? Even better:
2 cups (or less) of coffee daily . Each contains 1/2 - 1 tsp of brown sugar
Meals = 30% starch, 70% vegetables & legumes
Snacks = nuts, seeds, fruit, vegetables
End the day with popcorn and water
Crazy, eh? I look back and wonder, "who AM I?" But it's not a difficult way to eat. I don't spend my days wishing I could please have some chocolate pudding or a burger or a big bag of chips (you did read about the incidents, right?) What's to miss? They just make me feel like junk.
I can't wait to share some recipes, and especially can't wait to tell you how I feel as a result! It's quite interesting how food really does affect our bodies...
"Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food." - Hippocrates
**The 'just incase someone thinks I know what's best for them disclaimer':
Any of the statements made by the author are opinions. Nothing here should be taken as legal or medical advice,
or any other kind of advice that could cause you to lose your mind and sue me.
These are my opinions and experiences. That is all **