The trouble with food

Over the past few days I have been thinking about food a lot but it appears that I am not the only person in the world that is concerned with what I put into my mouth.
When did something as personal as eating become fodder (pardon the pun) for the masses?
Now, I am not an idiot and long ago realised that what you put into your mouth affects your body. (I cringe when I recall the things that wine and other sources of alcohol have made me do on occasion. 😳 ) What it comes down to is that I am the person who looks at myself in the mirror each day. I am the person who knows what is going on inside her own body.
Therefore, it would appear that I am the best person to make the decision about what foods are the best for me and which ones aren’t. After all, nobody else is shovelling food into my mouth for me are they?
I grew up with parents (and a grandmother) who taught me that I needed to eat everything on my plate. My forebears had been bought up in an era when what you were served on your plate you needed to be thankful for as food was not the commodity that it is today. These meals generally consisted of meat and two to three servings of vegetables. If I was lucky I got dessert afterwards.
I hated vegetables when I was a child and devised strategies to make eating them more palatable. The most popular was mixing them in with my mashed potato and then cutting it into sections. If I ate one section, I would reward myself by eating some of the other ‘yummy’ stuff on the plate. Thankfully my relationship with vegetables has improved over the years.
However, I digress.
I grew up learning how to create meals ‘from scratch’. There was none of this prepackaged stuff that you can buy from the stores nowadays.
But times change and somehow over the years, the way in which people eat has changed right along with it.

In this day and age there are so many ‘diets’ and eating ‘fads’ that it is difficult to put a number on them. The world is filled with experts and pseudo-experts extolling the virtues of a particular way of eating.
Over the years I have yo-yo dieted and also exercised. I have lost weight, and I have gained it. The other day I realised that my current weight is only slightly less than what it was when I was 8 months pregnant with the Tween. Funnily enough, I have ‘sat’ on this weight for about 3 years now with only tiny fluctuations.
However, I have realised that I need there are things going on with my body now that I am getting older that I am hopeful a change of eating habits may assist with. For one, the horrid adult acne that is making itself felt on my face, neck and back is really beginning to ‘tick’ me off. If I can lessen the outbreak or eradicate it entirely without resorting to chemicals and creams then I will be mighty happy.
So, I have been pulling out my books, recipe books, magazines and also reading.

My current reading material is a book calledΒ  “Make Peace with your Plate” by Jess Ainscough. Jess is a fellow Queenslander who was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 22 and fought it off through diet, so has written a book about the steps she took to do this. Much of what Jess talks about makes sense but some of it is just too ‘out there’ for me and I know it would never work for me personally. Some of the facts that she has shared I am also curious about and would like to investigate further. However, her point is that eating ‘clean’ is a bonus and that removing sugars and processed foods from your diet cannot do you any harm. I am inclined to agree with this observation.

This leads me to another book I have read by David Gillespie entitled “Sweet Poison”. He also makes many valid points in his writing but advocates removing all types of sugar (including fructose found in fruit) from your diet. David also advocates a ‘Paleo’ diet.
One of the biggest advocates of the Paleo diet here in Australia is celebrity chef Pete Evans. I’ve read a lot of Pete’s recipes and I quite like them however the paleo diet that he espouses advocates removing grains and dairy from what you eat each day believing that paleo man never ate either of these food groups. I’m a little torn on this as I enjoy my brown rice, oats and some cheeses (right now Haloumi is a favourite). I don’t drink milk as a rule preferring almond milk so missing out on milk wouldn’t be a big thing for me.
This has created a little bit of a storm in a teacup on social media right now with Bill Schrapnel – the sceptical nutritionist taking Pete to task and claiming he should be arrested for advocating this diet. I would like to think that Bill is rebutting with an open mind however must question the fact that many of his sponsors are those who specialise in prepacked foods.
What I am concerned about is that so many people are espousing what works for them that they have forgotten that it might not work for everyone.

So where does this lead the average joe blow such as myself who just wants to do the right thing for them and their body. I am not gluten-intolerant or coeliac but I have noticed that my body does not tolerate refined grains very well. I have also noticed that cutting back on sugary stuff (well my home baked goods anyway) has made a difference in my acne breakouts.
I believe that eating well comes down to common sense. We don’t need excess salt and sugar (and this is found in just about every prepackaged food on the market) but we do need the nutrients found in fresh foods.
So I have resolved to eat as ‘clean’ as I can whilst incorporating super foods, some fruits, lots of water, cutting back on sugar, minimising my dairy intake, enjoying my brown rice and also eating the occasional ‘Caramel and Pretzel’ cookie from the Coles bakery.
If I lose weight, that has got to be an added bonus because between you and me, it probably wouldn’t hurt to do so. lol

I’ll let you know how it goes! πŸ˜€

Advertisements

46 thoughts on “The trouble with food

            1. I must admit that I love licorice allsorts myself. And I know if I buy a packet of this sugar-laden goodness I can have it all to myself because the rest of the family hate it. lol

              Like

              1. That’s the way to do it, buy something nobody else likes. Went past 47 Waghorn this arvo. It’s up for sale and you can hardly see it for trees on the footpath. It’s where you said it was.

                Like

                1. Really? There used to be a big tree out the front and one out the back (the possums loved them). It was certainly an interesting old house and being divided into flats made it all the more interesting.

                  Like

  1. Great post Sue. I have always felt cutting something completely out of a diet never really works. Except in the case of intolerance, I was diagnosed 10 years ago with gluten intolerance, so have not eaten wheat or grains or anything containing them since then. I agree you can judge best what will or will not work for you. I also have bouts of acne but did see a dermatologist who gave me a prescription for a lotion which got rid of it. Eating fresh food you prepare is key too I think. Keep us posted! πŸ™‚

    Like

  2. I agree with the things you said Sue. Pretty much my eating is more healthy. I lost a lot of weight last year (60 lbs) but unfortunately some of that has crept back on. I was doing a lot more exercise at that time too, With the surgery in the spring and the move this week, I had slacked off on the food but now that I am setting in,I am going back to the healthier eating–clean foods, lots of fresh foods, much much less of the processed foods!

    Like

  3. I’m rooting for you. I tried clean eating. No white flour, white rice, whole grains, lots of veggies, reduced sugar–and I lost 10 pounds and it didn’t feel like I was dieting. I just didn’t stick to it. You are inspiring me to begin again. Good luck to you!

    Like

    1. Come on then girl. Let’s do it together. I had a big bowl of vegetables that had been fried in garlic butter and then topped with feta cheese and pineapple vinegar for lunch yesterday. AND I LOVED IT!! πŸ™‚

      Like

  4. Good luck to you Sue! I’ve found that at the end of the day … it comes down to being mindful about what we buy, cook, and put into our mouths. Its our thinking and emotions that get in the way! of what we know is good for us.
    Val x

    Like

    1. Thanks Cecile for the link. Although I am enjoying reading Jess’ book, I certainly am not taking everything on board. There is one claim she made about dairy cows in particular that just rang alarm bells with me and my own research (and personal knowledge) confirmed her inaccuracies. However, she does make a valid point that eating well will be good for your body. Whilst I understand that she was vulnerable when she received her cancer diagnosis causing her to look for alternative therapies, I have never believed she was cured (and yes she has claimed this despite her back-pedalling now).
      She does have some good recipes in the book that I would like to try and if they help me feel better within myself that’s got to be a good thing right?

      Like

  5. I struggle with this too although I haven’t always had this issue. Recently I started eating more healthy. Juicing is part of my regimine now once a day. And I include kale, cucumber along with a small orange and small apple and other things. I feel so “alive” when I drink it! My energy lifts up. it really is incredible that once you start eating healthy how better you can feel. Good post!

    Like

    1. Awesome Laura. I think it’s important to feel well within yourself. I admit that the thought of ‘green’ juices and smoothies goes against the grain for me but I’m willing to try them. I do however enjoy kale in stir fries and my breakfast egg dish. πŸ™‚

      Like

      1. Green juices are better than green smoothies. Yuck on green smoothies! I have a centrifugal juicer which removes all pulp and I also have a vitamix. When I want a juice I use the juicer, when I want a smoothie, I use the vitamix. Try this juice: two leaves kale, half cucumber (peeled), 4 bunny carrots, 1 small gala apple, 1 small valencia orange, 1 pineapple ring (fresh)….YUMMMMM!!!! And serve over ice! For a smoothie: 1/2 cup ice, 1 cup almond milk, 1 banana, YUMMMM!!! I like kale in eggs too. πŸ™‚

        Like

  6. I’m alarmed by all the diets/lifestyle changes that forbid healthy foods. I’ve got friends who can’t eat fruit, particularly melon, and some of the higher starch vegetables. I can see limiting fruit or starchier veggies to reduce sugar and carb intake, but when someone tells me they can’t have an apple or green beans on their diet, I feel like I should scream at their insanity.
    All we can do is fill ourselves up with the healthy foods we like. I like almost everything. Not a fan of mussels or beets. Not a big fan of meats. Enormously fond of fruits, veggies, beans, rice, eggs and dairy.
    Feel like it’s best to eat well and move more, rather than deprive one’s self of watermelon and rolls. Makes me sad.
    My weight fluctuates very little. I lose my appetite and lose weight when I’m unhappy, then I get sick. I gain weight mid-winter, with noodles and gravies and too much time sat under an afghan — oh! and holiday food, hehe! Fortunately, by the time my thighs are squished into jeans, the weather warms!
    I think one of the best things we can do is to listen to our bodies and make sensible choices. Like, growing a garden, taking a walk, and not ordering the largest ice cream cone, lol!

    Like

    1. I agree wholeheartedly with what you say. That is why this time, I am taking the good bits from these ‘diets’ and adapting them to my own lifestyle. I have done it before and I believe it is time to try it again. However, I can’t eat pineapple (as much as I love it). Pineapple and my stomach just don’t get on like they used to. lol

      Like

      1. Oh I know! I’m still willfully eating things that don’t agree with me, for the most part…

        It’s the best way to be, treating the diets like a buffet. Making conscious choices will lead you to better health πŸ™‚

        Like

          1. I think the acne thing is just the (pardon my French) reverse puberty bullshit. I’ve had clear skin my whole life and suddenly my neck is like a wonderland of white heads and itchy spots, which come and go with specific intervals, if you catch my drift. >.<

            Like

            1. Yes I do catch your drift. In fact I caught the whole dang wave!! πŸ˜‰
              I’m inclined to agree however research tells me that this is also one of the joyous things one endures when going through ‘change of life’. Double whammy if you ask me. *sigh*

              Like

    1. Thank you Elaine. I thought of you yesterday as I stirfried some vegetables in garlic (and a little butter). I thought “I wonder if my family will notice my garlic breath like Elaine’s have”? lol

      Like

  7. before all the diets and changes to lifestyles became hype.the skinny,the need to be a size eight,obsessions with weight and look instead of health people were lots better off.my parents and older generations.thats because it was about balance wasnt it.eat good but eat the big fish and chip tea with chocoalte cake on the riday night with ur friends and family too!!becasue the next day youll have a salad or veggies already included in the daily routine.why?just because thats what we did. we had fresh cooked meals by us and mum.we had all veggies(some diets cut out green beans,melon,nanas!!for being too high in something or other.but they are veggies!!)
    i dont beleive its about cutting it out.its about eating the best we can most of the time.with lots of veg and fresh food,cooked at home.but when we dont have time or fancy a splurge do it.because it will mkae you smile make you happy.because its just life,its eating,living.it normality.and real focus should then be given to our families,our inner selves.if your happy on the insdie i find you generally just atuomatically want to eat better.or do without even noticing.look at the french!!
    haha there it is my ideal all written down.does it happen?….no.not nowadays aswell.people seem so very unhappy.me included.i hate myself.and i hate the way the focus has now become upon food in such a push it in your face way.
    if you are allergic or intolrent then of course cut it out.
    if you want to put some better carbs in their like brown pasta or rice good for you but dont ,ake it a pressure and a guilt inducing thing.thats hoiw id like oti be.
    thats my wish.for people to be happy.to be ok.to feel good in who they are.
    i agree with everyhitng you have said.another thoughtful post,and though provoking.
    i would really like you to be happy and healthy for you.
    if ive seemed like ive come across all guns and blazing or offensive in this post sorry.i was all rallied up after thinking about the current cituation with how food is looked at.and how people feel about thesmevles.including me.it feels awful to feel so awful everyday.i dont want others too.that would be my biggest wish.and for you too.
    you seem so clever,thoughful,kind and a loving person.i think that great.

    Like

    1. Not offensive at all. Many people are very passionate about what they put into their bodies.
      Thank you for your thoughts and kind words. They are much appreciated. πŸ™‚

      Like

Don't be shy... Share your thoughts :)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s