Ok, ok. So, after my last post, I was surprised to see that I picked up a few followers and likes — only surprised because I do nothing with this blog to “promote” it. It started as an outlet a few years back and a promise to myself to write more. I think the subject matter was what triggered the response. I mostly always underestimate the power of a subject tag. And even more than that, I underestimate how many people out there, share the same challenge in their relationship with food.
I don’t know that this blog will morph into a “healthy eating” or lifestyle blog. I never intended to have that happen. But from time-to-time, I’ll be posting about my journey through food with the goal of health. With that in mind, today is Day 10. Day 10 of what? Day 10 of my goal of 30 days of solid no sugar, no chocolate, no dairy, no processed junk food. This thing started out under the guise of the Whole 30 plan, but miserably failed after a run-in with a terrible recipe and a dose of honest reality from the hubs (see Day 1 – Whole turd-y, err I mean Whole 30 for reference). So, here we are on Day 10. And it hasn’t been perfect, but it’s been worthy of a pat on the back.
I’ve been pretty proud of my ability to resist the processed snack/candy/sugar cravings. In fact, my brain is doing something weird and actually pointing me in the direction of apples and almond butter when I want something sweet. But I did slip up last week at a client dinner meeting…..over a huge burrito and basket of chips & salsa. While I’d talked myself up and even previewed the menu to decide what to order before I even left for the meeting, I just broke. It was Day 4. Pathetic. It happened. But I found that even as early as Day 4, my body responded negatively. While I had zero dairy in my meal, the flour tortilla and the corn chips tore me up. Half way into my meal, I just felt off. My stomach bloated, I felt crampy, and a few hours later, was crabby and headed for bed. I woke up the next morning feeling puffy and hazy. They say that eliminating food and reintroducing them (purposefully or in moment of weakness), will help you identify what your body may not enjoy. So far, it does not enjoy the corn or flour. Or maybe it was the black beans. Who knows.
On Sunday, I decided to “bake for the neighbors”, since my “healthy lifestyle” bananas had gone brown while waiting for me to actually eat them. I found a recipe for “healthy” chocolate banana bread. What I actually found was a recipe to set myself up for another failure in good eating choices. While the recipe called for only 1/2 cup of honey as the sweetener, the 1/2 cup of cocoa powder & dark chocolate chips basically took my no sugar, no chocolate goal and kicked it in the balls. I mean, I had to taste test it because I’ll be damned if I send over a shitty baked good to new neighbors….can you imagine the reputation I’d get as a bad cook/baker?! Not worth it. So I tried it. And facepalmed myself. It was so effing good. So good in fact, that it did not leave this house. It’s on the cutting board in a ziplock bag and is being whittled away by the hubs. Again though, I noticed the same type of gut reaction induced by the tortilla and corn chips: bloating, slight stomach cramping, and tiredness. I also noticed that the flavor of the bread as a whole seemed unnaturally sweet to me. I suppose it’s another “win” because even though I tried it, I haven’t had any more, nor do I want more of it. And that’s really weird because normally, I’d be slathering peanut butter all over that shit while saying, “But it’s protein and sugar from natural ingredients!”
These two moments of weakness aside though, we’ve had some great dinners with a lot of flavor. I pat myself humbly on the back because a lot of health recipes end up lacking flavor, which I’ve been able to avoid. Case in point, last night’s Mexican Eggs Benedict recipe (found here by Carmen of Every Last Bite). I amped up the recipe a bit by making my own Chorizo (recipe for spice blend found here and it’s bomb) – I just couldn’t find any at the market without added preservative bullshit and sugar. I also subbed the butternut for sweet potatoes and made a red cabbage slaw with cilantro, green onion, and some of the leftover hollandaise sauce for texture and additional veggie intake. Hubs was impressed. I too, was impressed. Not only did it knock the flavor out of the park, it was warm, satisfying, and seemed like we were eating really bad food, when in fact it was healthy. So here’s to a saying cheers to successful dinners and recognizing that failure happens! Onward to the next 20 days!