One of the most important sayings that changed my life came from a Ms. Texas winner that I went to college with. I remember being at my heaviest weight trying to figure out how to diet and stick with it and so one day, I just asked her (figuring she might know a thing or two about dieting). The words that came out of her mouth were priceless and changed my way of thinking about food forever: "Do you live to eat or eat to live?" That was it. Very simple, yet ringing loud and true in my head. Do I live to eat or eat to live? Who's controlling who here? Would I let my love for fast food get the better of me? Or could I learn to look at food like I do medicine that will save my life? That's what she suggested...that to really get control over her eating, she finally had to take a step back and consider what food really is...her answer, that food is something that she would consume in order to keep her body fit and healthy. You really can go either way with food...you can either feed it things that will keep it running like a well oiled machine, or you can stuff it full of things that will cause it to clog, swell and shut down. I'm not saying it's easy, and I do believe that you can have your cake and eat it to...if it's well within MODERATION...but seriously moderate if not on the absolute occasional side. As for everyday however, I choose to eat medicinally. I find all the studies on foods and supplements fascinating...to know that macrobiotic diets are helping those with cancer, or that low-glyceminc diets are helping people suffering from diabetes...these are only a few testaments to healthy eating.
Over the years it truly has been a struggle and at my lowest point, when eating seems out of control, that question pops into my head...Do you live to eat or eat to live? I find that I'd rather have a long healthy life instead of continued bad choices. So I take a deep breath and clean out the cupboards again, throwing away all that can damage my health...if it's not there you can't eat it! That's been the pattern and the basic gist of what's helped me take control of my eating and making good choices.
Fast forward to today: We are now on The Labor Day Challenge and the healthy eating regiment. I'm opting for true medicinal practices in my eating. I'm set-up with all my organic and healthy fruits, veggies, and lean proteins, plus the supplements that will fill in where food leaves off. I'm actually excited to see how far I can take this. How will I feel? Will I have more energy? Will I be able to maintain this level of eating and supplementing? I can only take it one moment at a time and if I think of it that way, I should be ok...No need in overwhelming myself. It's actually been a fun challenge. There are limited spices and oils one can cook with on this plan of mine, and so I'm having to be more inventive when it comes to recipes. But so far, the turkey "meat loaf" and the egg "muffins" I made turned out truly delicious, and without the dreaded salt. I'm actually enjoying the flavors of my vegetables without all the extra stuff...who new that mushrooms cooked in flax oil could be so yummy and satisfying...and that spaghetti squash is really fun to make, we'll see how it tastes at lunch. If you're interested, here are the first few recipes that I've come up with and will be eating today.
EGG "MUFFINS"(makes 12)
1 1/2- 2 cups diced veggies: bell peppers (variety of colors) mushrooms (pre-cooked to get excess water out), tomatoes
2 cloves diced garlic
3 green onions or scallions diced small
Preheat oven to 375. Use regular or silicone muffin pan, 12 muffin size. If using silicone pan, drizzle or spray with flaxseed oil. If using regular muffin pan, put two paper liners into each slot, then drizzle or spray with flaxseed oil.
In the bottom of the muffin cups layer diced veggies, garlic and green onions. You want the muffin cups to be 1/2 full, with just enough room to pour a little egg around the other ingredients. Beat eggs well. Pour egg into each muffin cup until it is 3/4 full to the brim. Bake 25-30 minutes until muffins have risen above the rim of the muffin cups and are slightly browned and set.
These freeze well. For best results, thaw in refrigerator before microwaving. I like to wrap them in a paper towel when reheating in microwave to soak up some of the liquid that is sometimes released.
1 lb. Ground Turkey
1 cup diced bell peppers (fun with variety of colors)
1/2 cup diced green onions or scallions
1 medium yellow onion diced
1/2 cup ground flaxseeds
1 egg (omega-3 type even better)
2 tsp. dried mustard
2 tsp. cayenne pepper
in a bowl combine Turkey, onion, veggies, spices and ground flaxseeds by hand until evenly mixed.
Prepare a loaf pan by drizzling or spraying flaxseed oil around bottom and sides of pan...pour off any excess oil.
Then put your combined mixture in pan and cook at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until the loaf is white with brown crust around the sides and the middle cooks up clear juices.
This is high in protein and omega-3 fatty acids...not to mention delicious.
SAVORY SPAGHETTI SQUASH
Cut large spaghetti squash in half, scoop out seeds, cover with foil and bake on a cookie sheet at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until soft when squeezed on the sides.
Scoop out squash from the skin into a bowl and add 1 tsp. cinnamon, 2 cloves diced garlic, and 2 tbl. sp. of Flaxseed oil. Mix until completely combined and serve.
So there's a taste of the menu for today, except for some bison burgers and broccoli waiting at home plus a nice mixed green salad with a little apple cider vinegar/lemon/flaxseed oil dressing.
Exercise wise, the plan is to do the 30 Day Shred DVD when I get home and then cook dinner...let's hope my energy holds strong.
Have a great day.