I am LATE with my update today. I am tired. The kind of tired that hurts. This is a combination of mind numbing training for the last four days, and all of the food prepping/planning from the last week or so.
Yesterday started to fall apart at lunch. Dave forgot to pack something to bring with him to work, and ended up having portions of what was catered for his lunch meeting. He chose spanish rice, and refried beans from the fajita plates that were delivered. Spanish rice was made with white rice, so….yeah. For dinner, his boss wanted to take him out to dinner because another college was in town, and there was no righting the ship. Really hard to eat out unless you are in the kitchen with the chef watching him cook. 😦 Who wants to be that patron that asks what all is in the sauce or salad dressing. Especially when it is not due to an allergy. I survived the day without taking a dive into a tub of chocolate, and even maintained real food eating habits until tonight when I was sitting in front of a whole mess of yummy cookies and mini cakes. I had one, and it was a-mazing.
I have been asked about the reasons why we made this pledge. There are several answers to that question. The main reasons were a family history of high cholesterol, and a desire to influence a palate for our boys while they are young for healthy food instead of processed food. I would say this has been a long time coming.
When I was pregnant with Trevor, I had a crisis of conscience of sorts. I knew I needed to eat better, but was not really sure what that meant. Our first change was to move to organic meat and dairy. This became much more of an issue for us after watching the movie Food Inc. When Trevor was born, I made his food, and we tried to make a switch to organic produce when possible. I should note that while we did change meat, dairy and produce choices, Dave and I never eliminated processed food or sweets from our diet.
Fast forward to the arrival of sweet Lucas last April, and the realization that Trevor would require a bit of developmental therapy. I went on a mission to research things that could be causing the developmental delays. As a family, we commited to ridding our home of chemicals, and we also changed to exclusively using a chemical free manufacturer of personal care products to limit chemicals that are applied to our skin. One HUGE area of hypocrisy remained our diet. How can I really say that we are eliminating chemicals, if we are still eating them. Again, I did not know what to avoid, or how.
The turning point came when I stumbled upon a website that I was using mainly for recipes. I began reading her story, and the steps that she took in her family to eliminate processed food from her diet. We began making small changes to the way we ate at home. We replaced sugar with maple syrup and honey, and eliminated vegetable and canola oils from cooking. The small changes were easy, but could we make a 10 day pledge? It took me a LONG time to decide that we could commit.
While trying to pick a 10 day stretch that would give us the best chance to succeed, I watched a documentary called Hungry For Change. Everything changed. It was time, and this documentary was what I needed to get moving. Thus…April 1st began our 10 days of real food.
One big struggle I have, is what to do with all of this information. I cannot unlearn the things that I learned in the books or documentaries. It is knowledge that demands a choice. While I am glad that the 10 days are done, there will certainly be portions of our 10 day pledge that remain in some form or another going forward. Juicy is here to stay! I read that if you can maintain healthy eating habits 80% of the time, then you are doing great. I want to aim for more like 90/10 while at home, but know there will be times when we are out, or the boys are away from home, and I will not be able to control what they are eating. I need to be realistic.
I may have to tell other parents that my kids will not be eating the cupcake or whatever treat is being offered, and I am not looking forward to those tough convos honestly. I need to know my audience, and choose how much detail I give when talking about the changes we are making as a family. It can sound soap-boxy, and it do not want to come off as judgmental at all. My choice does not have to be someone else’s choice.
Having said that, should you be interested in learning more, here are some resources that really helped me understand why it was time to make a change.
In Defense of Food
The Unhealthy Truth
Feeding Baby Green
Hungry for Change (Watch in parts on You Tube)
Forks over Knives
Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead
Fooducate (Tells you the ingredients of any food that contains a bar code, and also helps identify if it contains any possible GMOs. AMAZING. Get this!)
Happy eating friends!