Has anyone ever noticed that there is seemingly no spectrum of eating healthy? It’s almost as though you’re a 1 – eating crap… or a 10 – a vegan living on a raw food diet. Ok, ok, I know that’s not the case.
I have never been one who has paid much attention to eating healthy. I’m not really proud of that statement, but it’s the truth and it’s life. I have had people in my life who have gone from a “normal” diet, eating hamburgers, fries, pizza, with fruits and veggies sprinkled in to the very next day, seemingly, reveling in their asparagus and brussels sprout smoothie for breakfast gloating about how delicious it is on social media sites.
I am not that type of person.
I don’t think I have it in me to simply and completely walk away from the way I’m used to eating.
I want to eat healthier and I want my family too as well. So, I started implementing small changes. Ordering from a food co-op was the best thing I could have done. It has made me aware that there is an obvious and big difference in quality of meats. I am now pretty picky about the type of meat I choose for my family and am willing to pay the price. One also offers 9-grain bread. You have to buy 5 loaves at once, so I convinced a couple of friends to try it out with me and now I won’t go back. I hate it when we run out and miss out on ordering more. Beyond that the co-ops have given us new types of fruits and vegetables that weren’t on my radar before. I probably never would have bought cauliflower, but found out it is a favorite of my daughter. We just tried plums today and both the kids liked it (after I forced them to try it!) 🙂
I’ve also tried to reorient how I have my kids eat. If they claim to be hungry, I will give them options of the different fruits and veggies we have. If they say they don’t want that, but want (insert unhealthy snack here) I say, “Well then, you’re not really hungry.” I want them to understand (and get into the habit) that when they’re hungry the best thing to do is grab fruits or veggies. Don’t get me wrong, they get treats, but I want snacking to be healthy.
I’ve also come to the dinner table differently. Just last night we had sloppy Joe’s with raw carrots and broccoli. (In the past I’d probably serve this with chips instead… so don’t judge me for the sloppy Joe. 🙂 ) Anyhow, my daughter didn’t want to eat the sandwich but ate a ton of carrots and broccoli. So, do I force her to take some bites of the sandwich? Really? If she’s happy with the veggies and can fill up, shouldn’t that be ok? So I didn’t push the issue. Today she ate the ham and cheese from her sandwich, but not the bread. Again do I push the issue? Should I make her eat a sandwich a normal way, or allow her to do it her way and so not love carbs as much as I do? I let it go. I’m not convinced I did the right thing in either setting, but I think it’s partly because I was raised in the culture pushing “clean plate clubber” membership. But, I want my kids to learn to stop eating when they’re satisfied.
Here’s my biggest frustration with all this. I’ve made some good healthy steps in the right direction. But when I try to look out there in the internet world about the next step to take, I’m off to asparagus and brussels sprout smoothie land where I don’t know what half of the ingredients are in recipes. To top it off, the recipes have about 100 ingredients and take about an hour of your time. I’m not ready for that. I’m just happy if I can get a meal on the table. I wish there was some type of transition-to-healthy-eating website that lead you through steps of things to add into and take out of your diet progressively. Or one that catered healthy recipes to busy moms that includes freezer meals and crockpots!
I’m happy to take tips, ideas, recipes, advice, amens! and encouragement. But please don’t expect me to being making the above mentioned smoothie tomorrow morning! 🙂