I feel I am at a good place when it comes to my eating habits, though this was not always the case. It has taken me several years of trying things and listening to my body to get where I am today, which goes like this :
- Meals : Protein + veggie + possibly small serving of quinoa/rice/pasta + yogurt or fruit depending on my mood and hunger level.
- Snacks : I always have nuts with me in case I get really hungry between meals.
- Treats : In the evening I might have a cup of ice cream or some chocolate (because life is too short to go without ice cream and chocolate)
- Beverages : Water (preferably cold) 90% of the time, daily coffee (preferably hot) and on the weekends I might have a glass or two of wine.
However, I didn’t always eat like this and there are several episodes / events / books that strongly influenced how I eat today :
- I was in high school in the mid-eighties. Diets were in full swing, super models were everywhere. I decided to try a diet. I can’t even remember which one it was, but it was very restrictive and had to do with cutting out something. I quickly learned that when you go off the diet you binge on everything you couldn’t have for the given period of time.
Lesson : When you can’t have it, it makes you want it more. Stop dieting.
- In college, I ate and drank like your typical college student. I quickly learned that hard alcohol and my body do not appreciate each other, and I decided I didn’t like waking up feeling like crap after parties. So today, no hard liquor, and no getting drunk. (that’s me on the right, in college)
Lesson : if it makes you feel like crap, don’t drink it / eat it
- We had a nanny for our first child who loved to cook veggies. I was not a big veggie person but it was important my kids were eating well. When we moved and we changed nannies, the second one didn’t cook ANY veggies. So I learned to cook them, to ensure my kids were being correctly nourished. I eventually learned to love veggies.
Lesson : learn to cook veggies, it is just as easy as pasta and adds variety to your meals
- I went to visit my sister in law after her first child. She was doing Weight Watchers. At first I was completely turned off ! A diet ! I can not ” diet”. But after a week with her, I was quite intrigued. Weighing food ? Counting points ? I eventually went on Weight Watchers for a few months, mainly because you could eat everything, just in moderate portions. I loved it because I could have my glass of wine, or my chocolate.
Lesson : learn what a healthy portion size it. Everything in moderation.
- I did the 21 Day Sugar Detox by Diane Sanfilippo. I felt my sweet tooth was taking over so I did the program which is based on protein + healthy fats + good carbs, and eliminating all sources of sugar, gluten and processes foods. It had a very positive effect.
Lesson : you WILL have withdrawal symptoms when you cut out sugar and bad carbs but you will also feel amazing, boost your energy, reduce bloat and sleep like a baby.
I am sure there will be other diets, fads or habits that will influence the next 50 years of my life as we learn more in nutrition science, but for now, I am at a good place. I have energy, I am never sick, my bodily functions are pretty much regulated… what more could I ask for ?
And what has most influenced your eating habits ? Every done a detox ?