Saturday, March 12

Now what?

I am wanting a lifestyle change for my family.  A year ago, I cut out trans fats and corn syrups and we barely missed them.  But they snuck back in, here and there, and I realized that we needed more than just a small habit change, we need a lifestyle change.  However, whole foods are expensive and I need educated on the best way to proceed.

We enjoy our mealtimes together and I want to make this change without having to obsess over food preparation but I also want us to continue to enjoy our meals together.  We have already learned to make many meals from scratch, but learning to avoid white flour seems so hard right now.  Also, creating meals and meal choices for them to enjoy while away from home seems nearly impossible at the moment.  We have cut out sugar for Lent and I'm amazed that it has not been difficult.  It helps that it is for a limited time and I see the end in sight.  But it's harder for the kids when they go out with friends and are surrounded by sweet treats.

While our meals have been from scratch, we have been a meat and potatoes family that has mostly forgotten to toss vegetables in as side dishes.  Knowing this had to change, my family did a week of raw foods to jumpstart this new lifestyle change.  We adapted well, but it was easier knowing that it was only for 5 days.  Now that we're embarking on a lifestyle journey without an end in sight, it seems more daunting.  I want it to become a natural habit to eat wholesome foods with wholesome ingredients that do not include white flour and white sugar.

My children are enthusiastic about any adventure and they enjoy all kinds of food.  They enjoyed our week of raw foods, and were excited to discover a love for new fruits and veggies.  My husband is willing to eat long as it tastes good.  He does not want to feel deprived. I don't blame him. I, myself, am not enthusiastic, but I am determined.  After a week of raw foods, all I crave is pizza and a Dr. Pepper.  I'm behaving, but my cravings aren't disappearing.

Added to this challenge, I am sensitive to wheat and my daughter is sensitive to rice.  Strangely, even though we much prefer the taste of whole grains and brown rice, our bodies seem to tolerate white bread and white rice better than whole grain or brown.

I want a picture of what this lifestyle is going to look like.  I also want to know that it is affordable.  Our week of raw foods cost 3 times as much as my usual weekly budget.  We cannot do that again.

I used to buy coke every time we went shopping.  It seemed so okay.  So normal.  I KNEW that it had poisonous ingredients in it that can cause everything from diabetes to alzheimers, but I still drank it with glee.  In fact, I still WANT one!  But I know it's not okay.  I really had to shake up my befuddled thinking.  But the Reeses! Oh, my! The Reeses.  Reeses pumpkins, Reeses Christmas trees, Reeses hearts....and I'm going to see Reeses eggs soon!  But now, I realize that cashew butter is crazy sweet naturally.  That bananas are insanely sweet naturally.  I can make a peanut butter egg from scratch with healthy ingredients that will take me less than 15 minutes.  I can do this. I think.

A friend of mine dropped off some material for a program called Prism.  It is no white flour, no white sugar type eating that sounds non-extreme...just natural, normal eating.  I am trying to figure out where we're going from here...what our menus will look like.


Nezzy said...

Oh baby, you've got your work cut out for ya!!!

Best of luck to you sweetie!!!

Sometimes ya just have to aim for that happy medium....'nuff said!

Have a great weekend ya'll :o)

Jennie C. said...

It's really hard to stick with big changes like you seem to be proposing, Jenn. It might be better to make whatever small changes you can and stick with those than trying to revamp your entire diet in one fell swoop. And cost IS a daunting factor! Hence, a big reason we bought the farm. :-) I traded hard work for food instead of cash. It's rewarding to know that about a third of the food we eat comes from right here...and in only two years, too!

Jenni said...

Jenn, did I tell you about the I Am Grateful cookbook? When we went to California last spring, a few friends took me to the Cafe Gratitude in the Cupertino Whole Foods. They do mostly raw foods and all that other healthy stuff, but the things I tried tasted amazing. There are even desserts that taste so good you feel like you must be cheating. I bought the cookbook, but I have to admit I haven't tried any of the recipes yet. I think this summer when I am not working will be a better time if I don't get to it before then. (Ha! There's always a reason to put it off, but I will do it eventually.)

Jenni said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jenn said...

Jenni, that sounds wonderful! I'll check it out. I'm realllly hungry right now and everything sounds wonderful, but I'm sure that this really is as good as it sounds. I trust you. ;)

Learning Together at Home said...

Jenn, I am a reader who mostly, well, read awhile back. Now I'm back after adding a couple of children to our crew and you have me hooked right off! :) I tried the Prism plan last year. It worked well, but I fell off after Phase 1 and a month long road trip with our family (can you say "diner" food?). Haev you attempted the Prism plan? I am curious how you are doing this far past your Raw week.

Jenn said...

Well, LT@H, I'm getting there. I've not read the book, only excerpts, copied from a friend. We have avoided sugar, but included occasional honey and agave nectar. I think honey is supposed to be off the list, and we've not gone overboard. The hard part is going out in public where every event we attend is based on sugar. Sometimes we're treated like lepers, sometimes not.

Wheat is something I haven't kept away from the kids, but am realizing I have to avoid myself. Because I am avoiding it, they are getting less and less of it.

It's a learning process for sure. I am determined to not treat this like a typical "diet", but am approaching it as a lifestyle change. It would be so much easier if it were more socially acceptable.

Anonymous said...

I've found that a CSA subscription has really, really been the kick in the pants I need to add more veggies to my meals. Knowing that a whole new box of veggies is coming next week, veggies I've already paid for, gives me incentive to use up the loot from the last box in a timely manner. Perhaps that would be helpful for you, as well?

For me, a gluten-free and sugar-free lifestyle has meant packing food with me wherever we go. After seven years, it's become old hat, and I've just gotten better and better as a gluten-free baker. I made some muffins for a party a few weeks ago, and every single person who tried them asked me for the recipe ... and yep, they were gluten-free, sugar-free, sweetened with stevia. Once you get in the swing of it, you'll find your groove and it will be no big deal. It's the beginning that's the most difficult.

Jenn said...

Thanks for that! I will definitely look into the CSA thing. In the meantime....can I get that recipe? :D

nelya said...

Just a word of encouragement, you can do it!
My mother used to say something about only shopping from the edges of the grocery store and staying away from the middle.

Anonymous said...

Go to the hallelujuah acres
website for healthy raw recipes!

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