So I have gotten quite a bit of questions and response from people wondering something things – I’ll cover all that here.
1. Do you drink caffeine?
YEP! I love my morning coffee so that’s usually it for me for the day – which is how I’ve always been. I was never an afternoon coffee drinker and had cut out sodas summer of 2011, so nothing new there. Recently to cut down on certain fats I cut out half and half in my coffee and to cut down on sugar I slowly cut that out too. Now I drink it black, I had to grow into this but now I like it.
2. Do you drink alcohol?
Occasionally, this was a big change for me. I’ve been a social drinker for a long time. But when I started eating clean something happened and suddenly I couldn’t drink the way I used to. Holding weight in your middle can also be attributed to alcohol – sugar and it ups your estrogen, even in men – so now I drink a glass of wine or cocktail about once a week, I might have two a week. But really I feel better when it’s only one as I just don’t feel great if I have more, I love having energy and being able to workout almost every day so I really don’t want my energy and sleep messed with!
3. Do you eat carbs?
Ok well first of all let’s clarify what carbs are and when diets say no carbs what they are really saying? Carbs are anything from bread to pasta to vegetables and fruit. When people keep carbs out they are usually trying to keep grains out of their diet. But any diet that makes fruits and veges the bad guys are suspect to me.
Now to answer, I limit my grains. It took a long time for me to get to that point, but I have more energy when I do, I loose fat more easily too. I taper off in my day. So grain at breakfast, little or none at lunch, none at dinner. I don’t think grains are evil, but we do over consume them in our diet. They break down as sugars in the body which give energy (which is why I like to eat it at breakfast) but unless you are a runner or do a lot of cardio in your day your body is fine with having a little and not a lot. The grains I eat are usually sprouted grains as that’s the most pure form of grain, very little processing.
A few days ago I had a tortilla with lunch and quino with dinner – I ate my way through the earth from lunch on. I could not get enough food, it was ridiculous. I’ve decided that for ME, eating grains after a certain time of day makes me hungrier, it could be the type of grains though so I don’t have this completely resolved – and everyone is different on this.
4. Do you eat desserts?
Yep, not everyday and when I do I try to keep the sugar low. Often I’ll eat coconut ice cream as it’s a plant based fat and I’ll add shaved almonds and fruit – its fantastic and I’m getting some fiber and protein along with a plant based fat. It does have sugar so I make a very small dish. Enough to satisfy. It’s not cheap so another reason to keep the dish small. When I bake I never use the amount the recipe calls for, I use more natural sugars I’ll even put dried dates in hot water puree them and use that for sugar. But tapering back on how much we consume is key, American desserts are VERY sweet and our guts are showing the evidence of that.
5. Do you eat out?
I do, I have a splurge meal every week where I eat out with family or friends. I don’t overeat though and I like to go to local restaurants that I know have higher quality ingredients – so no Chilis for me – blech! I want GOOD food! Often though I’m disappointed as the menus lack variety of the quality isn’t great, so it’s a challenge – my food is yummy at home 😉
Occasionally I’ll have more than one meal out that week because of social events etc – I plan when I do, I eat well that day, make sure I don’t skip my workout, work a little harder and drink a lot of water. Before the happy hour or what have you I may make a small protein shake at home to get some nutrients and fill me up a little.
6. Do you eat meat?
I do, red meat about once a week, fish and chicken a lot more. It takes red meat longer to digest so I limit it, veges help in that digestion though so that’s good. If it’s in my house it’s organic, grass fed, free range or wild caught – all the buzz words. Why? Well besides the fact that antibiotics and hormones are in the other kind, animals don’t get the nutrients they need when they aren’t fed grass and they aren’t out in the sun, B12, CLA and loads of other vitamins. The crazy thing is they are showing that we are lacking a lot of nutrients that we as carnivores should have – well that’s why! Plus it tastes better, isn’t as fatty and tastes better, oh did I say that already?
7. How religious to all this are you?
Ummm pretty religious I’d say. Listen, Ive lived the life of “I know I should do ____ but I don’t so I’m just going to beat myself up for not doing it or wish that I was”. THAT allows a lot of self negativity into your life, who needs it? I don’t. Plus I feel great and I WANT to be different so it’s just who I am now.
8. Do you workout a lot, is that why you feel this way?
I love working out, I used to workout a few to a couple of times a week and usually working out and eating well went hand in hand, where there was one there was the other and when one wasn’t present the other wasn’t either, I think most people feel that’s true in their lives.
In December when I cut out fast food I was working out 2-3 times a week, usually 2. I dropped 10 lbs without exercising 6 days a week. But now I really enjoy the challenge, and as these last few lbs are much harder, exercise really helps. Plus it clears my head, helps me sleep better and increases my physical abilities. So now I move every day and try to work out 5-6 times a week, it does not account for 100% of my journey though, and unfortunately people truly feel they can eat whatever as long as they work out – false. You’ll never out train your diet – never!
9. So where do you recommend I start?
I would start by cutting out processed foods and fast food, go to all real foods. Even if its bread or pizza or what have you, make sure it’s something that is real not take out or frozen etc. Start making as much of the foods you eat as you can. This will help you learn about foods, learn about yourself and learn about how to plan in your life. Also it gives you a reality check of what you have been doing. It’s totally different preparing your foods and running through a drive through – and you’ll get this once you’ve done it a bit.
Experiment with foods, recipes etc – doesn’t have to be perfect, just has to be you. And realize there is a difference between fulfilling hunger and fulfilling boredom, loneliness etc. Who cares if it’s not the best hamburger you’ve ever had, it’s just food, you’re hungry and you need energy for the rest of your day right – so eat it and make it better next time. This hamburger is to fulfill hunger, not fulfill you!