I think we’re all trying to eat healthier. We’ve all had it drilled in to our heads about the importance of nutrition. From early childhood, we were taught to eat from the food pyramid. Over the years, there’s been an onslaught of diet books and breaking news about certain foods being good or bad for us. What are we to believe? Here’s my take.
It can make one’s head hurt. Don’t eat fat, don’t eat bread, don’t eat sugar, don’t drink alcohol, don’t eat hamburgers and fries. Don’t, don’t, don’t!
And on and on it goes. The problem is, the American diet has evolved over the last several decades. It’s not about eating less, it’s about eating more. It’s about super-sizing. Restaurants should be fined for the amount of food they deliver on a plate. All we remember is Mom telling us to “eat everything on your plate, there are starving children in the world,” and so we do. I’d rather share the part I can’t eat with those starving children. Such gluttony.
First of all, I don’t believe in the “one size, fits all” approach to nutrition. Trying to eat healthier to me means eating until I’m full. I slow down in between bites and taste the food. It means eating what agrees with my tummy, and how it makes me feel after I’ve eaten. It’s about listening to our bodies. They’re pretty smart, fine-tuned machines. If something doesn’t agree with me, I try to pull it out of my diet. Notice, I said try.
But ah, those cravings. Guilty as charged! It’s hard to have “just a taste,” or to say “I’ll have just one.” Like these One Bowl Brownies. It’s soooo hard! It’s been a challenge here at The Log Home Kitchen trying to meet the nutritional needs of my family, i.e. dear Hubs. Battling cancer is stressful. It comes with physical, emotional, and psychological hurdles. Unless you’ve been there, many people can’t possibly comprehend the enormous toll this puts us under each and every day. Here’s how we cope:
- All things in moderation. This includes diet. I’ve always believed this. Still do.
- We eat whole foods. In other words, nothing that’s been processed. Dairy is limited. Desserts have become few and far between (have you noticed I’ve not posted a yummy, decadent dessert for awhile?).
- I make my own seasonings and marinades to flavor foods that are low in sodium and preservative-free, like this heavenly Herbs de Provence. I make alot of sauces from scratch that would rival those preservative-laden ones with the fancy labels from the grocery store, like this Tomatillo Ranch Dressing.
- Canned foods are limited. Anyone who walks into my pantry will see that it’s pretty sparse of name brands. I’ll can my own when possible, thank you.
- We limit alcohol. Red wine is the elixir of de-stressing at the end of the day for us. A glass before dinner (usually on the patio, weather permitting), a glass with dinner. None after (unless it’s a special occasion or get-together, then we might imbibe a bit more).
- There are no “bad” days. We greet each day with the determination to make it the best it can possibly be. Even if it means treatment or surgery.
- We’ve allowed ourselves to say it’s okay to take a nap. Days can be long, nights can be difficult and disruptive. 30 minutes of solid rest gets us through the remainder of the day.
- We laugh alot. Even if it’s watching the hens cackle about or the antics of our beloved canines and felines.
- We’ve become tolerant of others and their perceived shortcomings. We’re such a judgmental society. Get over it.
- We enjoy each moment. That’s all we’re guaranteed.
Okay, enough for my words of wisdom. Do you get my message here, or are you more confused?
It’s easy to get caught up in what’s good for us and what isn’t. We’re consumed about trying to eat healthier, but are we getting there? I think so. Thanks to the organic foods movement, and the unveiling of motives and cover-ups in regards to Big Pharma (as in pharmaceutical companies) and Big Business that fuel the medical industry. Society is getting wiser. Sadly, it’s all become so political, and it’s costing lives. But shouldn’t it be about eating healthier, feeling good, living longer? Isn’t that what we all want?
Let’s face it. Things aren’t the same as they were years ago. I would guess you’re doing the best you can to feed your family good food as much as I am mine. It all comes with a price.
And lets not forget about habits. Habits can be hard to break. Weaning off of sugar and flour is tough. It can be done, with will power. If you’re lucky enough to get to that point, the cravings will dissipate. Then you can become a lean, mean, fighting machine. No one ever said that the best things in life come easy.
Are you concerned about wanting to feel better? Are you trying to eat healthier? I know we are. These Easy Asian Lettuce Wraps show up regularly at the dinner table.
Eating like this quells all desire for junk foods.
Is it all or nothing for you, or can you practice moderation? Let’s get the conversation going. About diet. Health. Beating disease. What do you do?
Lots of questions. I don’t think there are any right or wrong answers. It boils down to what makes us feel best. I’d love for your to chime in.
The days have been absolutely gorgeous here in Central Idaho. Getting physical activity in has done us a world of good after having had a long, cold dormant Winter. We’re working in the gardens, doing damage control on broken pipes, and all the fun stuff in between as we usher in the new season. I hope you’re getting to enjoy some nice days, too. Moving more seems to encourage us to want to eat better, too.
Be sure to check back for more stirrings, or sign up for email notifications at the top of the page. Have a wonderful week everyone, and thanks for stopping in!