Food

Clementines and coffee.

The last of the Christmas Kringle danish and coffee.

Asian beef and broccoli.

Pot roast with apples, sweet potatoes, and prunes and an arugula salad.

The second to last slice of that delectable danish.

This is what I’ve eaten in the last twenty-four hours, starting from right at this moment all the way back to yesterday morning. Some of it has been truly wholesome and healthy. (That pot roast was bomb.) Some of it (okay, the danish) was perhaps not so healthy, but it nourished me in a way that I don’t usually let baked goods or other sweets do.

It was nourishing, because I took my time with it. I lingered over it at breakfast time while my whirligigs of children gobbled up their own breakfasts of oatmeal (no, I did not share my danish – I don’t share food well) and went on with their mornings. I sipped my coffee, tasted each bite of that pastry, and briefly imagined myself sitting in a small Scandinavian cottage with a snow covered garden inhabited by gnomes or some other such whimsy. While such time and care spent eating my breakfast probably didn’t add any nutritional content or deduct any calories, it felt good to do something little and special for me, aaaand it prevented me from diving for a second piece.

I think  a lot of people, particularly women, particularly at this time of year, have a goal to lose weight or eat better or be more active. I sort of perpetually have these goals, but I always struggle. I could go deeper into this (like way deeper) and dredge up stuff regarding eating disorders, crazy weight gain and loss and gain again, and a pretty extensive family history of weird relationships with food (going from starvation to overabundance in less than a generation perpetuates strange food hoarding habits).

I’ve come to a point where, regardless of my weight, I generally like my appearance (you may have figured this out by my number of selfies if you follow me on Instagram). Eating well is slowly becoming less and less about leading to weight-loss and more about how I feel. I’m going to be 29 this year and I’ve noticed how bad food is effecting how I feel so much more. I’m so done with feeling tired and icky all the time and I know if I fuel my body properly, my energy levels and general well-being will increase, hopefully heading off that 30th year deterioration I keep hearing about.

So, instead of dieting, closely tracking calories, and fussing over food intake and energy output, I’m committing to eating nutritious food as much as I can and when I do choose less healthy options, to take only a little and to truly enjoy it. I want my body and mind to feel good, I want my children to see me appreciating and loving the food that properly fuels our bodies, and I don’t want to be a slave to specific food rules.

If you consider yourself a healthy eater, what tips, recipes, or stories do you have to share? If you’re on this journey yourself, where have been successful? Where are you struggling?

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