Tuesday, June 07, 2011
I weighed myself the other morning and discovered I actually lost weight. I joined SparkPeople mostly to maintain my weight. I have been busy with moving and yard work, plus with my running class.
I am not sure if it is the right weight for me because I seem to have a hard time maintaining. But I am sure that if, that is a big IF, I watch what I eat and eat nutrient dense foods and limit the junk foods that I should be able to stay within my acceptable range.
I guess I am kind of excited about the weight loss because I really have not weighed myself or tracked my food intake for about a month. Apparently, I must be doing something right.
Friday, June 03, 2011
Today, we are facing many difficult challenges to eat healthy that are different from the decades before us. When I was growing up in the 60's and 70's eating out was a rare treat. As I child, I remember eating out only for breakfast on our yearly camping trip and that was only on the first day of the trip because Dad would always start out at about 4:00 am. My mom always packed food for our meals and we ate at the campsite.
When I raised my children in the 80's and 90's eating out was more common. We went out at least once a week. Back then, it was still considered a treat and we planned for it.
Now, it seems that eating out is common practice. It is easier to stop and grab something from the drive-through. Also, those value meals seem to be cheaper than cooking at home.
However, today, I do not eat out very often because after I went to a Culinary Training Program and see what actually goes on in the kitchen - I do not trust restaurants to provide me with healthy choices. Whenever I was at the stove cooking something that needed oil added, I would add the minimal amount and the instructors would always be right behind me dumping in more. I do not know how many times I complained that they just ruined my dish. And they would laugh at me. It seems that fat is a necessary component for the majority of people to enjoy their food. It's for that mouth feel - or so I am told.
My daughter moved back home with us a couple of weeks ago and we were eating lots of salads and soups (broth based). Since she was used to eating processed meals, this was a change for her. The other day, she bought a bag of Cheddar Cheese Potato Chips and as she was eating them she commented, "I never noticed how nasty these things taste. It taste like grease." It appears she has cleansed her palate and no longer liked that "mouth feel".
Even though I cook at home, it is hard to find processed foods without any added sugar. Today, food manufacturers add sugar as a filler because it is a method of cost control for them. Today, it is necessary to read labels to have an idea of what we are eating. It takes more diligence today, more than ever to buy foods that do not have added extra unnecessary ingredients.
How do we overcome these challenges? I am finding that buying food in as close to its natural state is one of the easiest ways to cut out added sugars, fat, additives, etc. Whenever I need to purchase processed foods, I usually try to find the products with the fewest ingredients and with those that I can read and know what it means.
Yes, we do have different challenges today to eat healthy and those who are not up to the challenge are suffering from weight and health issues. One of the most important things I heard about how to get food manufactures to provide us with better choices is: "You cast your vote at the checkout."
Thursday, June 02, 2011
Yesterday, I posted a blog "How I am Going to Tame My Sweet Tooth" and this morning I came across this blog: www.dailyspark.com/blog.asp?post=why
I often call my choice to eat sugar laden overprocessed foods an addiction to sugar, but seriously, is it an "addiction"? Or is it because of learned behavior. For example, I often eat candy bars and drink soda pop when I am mowing my yard. I have a large yard and often try to finish it in one day, so I have told myself that I need to have a "sugar rush" to have the energy to complete the task.
In other words, I have justified my actions to eat junk and that outweighed the negative consequence of eating too much sugary food. In reality, if I wanted to have energy to finish the task, wouldn't it really be better to have a more nutritious food choice? Would not an apple or a banana provide me with energy?
Perhaps, it is easy to justify my choice of snack because I sense the immediate surge of energy and do not feel the negative consequence of eating too much sugar because that needs to accumulate over time. To have the delay of the negative makes the reward of the candy bar so much more appealing.
In conclusion, according to this blog, I may not really have an addiction but a learned behavior that I am not wanting to give up. If I really want to be successful in not eating so many sugary snacks then I am going to need to learn to replace my thinking and actions with something else and do it repeatedly so that new way will become my "habit" or rather, my new addiction.
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
I have been trying for years to tame my sweet tooth and recently have been focusing on the ill effects that sugar has on me. So far, it does not seem like I am being successful, but thinking back I can see how subtle changes in my diet have changed they way I enjoy certain foods.
The most noteable is when I make sure to include a huge salad with mixed greens and a variety of raw vegetables I do not seem to crave over processed sugary snacks as often. So, the most logical thing I can do to tame my sweet tooth is to make sure that I include a salad for lunch and dinner.
Another change I am going to make is to change my thinking that I need to have a "sugar rush" to help me through the day. Often, when I am doing physical work such as moving the lawn, landscaping, I tell myself that I need to have candy bars and/or soda to give me energy. Now that the grass is growing and yard work needs to be done, I am going to choose an apple and some nuts for my 'energy' snack.
I found that I can tame my sweet tooth by having whole grains and fruit for breakfast. When I start my day with this for breakfast, I noticed I do not crave as many sweets throughout the day.
In conclusion, how I am going to tame my sweet tooth is by making sure I focus on the micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) in the foods I eat rather than just the macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fats.) The best way to do this is to eat more foods as close to their natural state as possible.
Monday, May 30, 2011
Well, we are almost moved back into our cabin. We decided to let our oldest daughter and her family rent our house. So, we downsized only to have our youngest move back in with house. It is going to be a challenge because she just gave birth to a baby boy on May 18th.
The baby came early and has to stay hospitalized so we have time to get our cabin ready for him. We sure have collected a lot of things over the years and I am having difficulty finding a place for it all. Right now the place is cluttered, but slowly things are getting put away (Of course, it'd be done sooner if I would quit Sparkin') :-)
I guess you can say that our place is going to be real "cozy".
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