Pebbles to Sand 3: Nutrition

Eating healthy probably comes easy for many of you, but not for me.  I have a passionate love for sugar and carbs.  I adore them (see my Tribute to Candy post).  I’ve pushed myself for months at a time to clear them from my diet and eat healthy, but truly, I don’t enjoy myself for those few months.  All I can think about is the deliciousness I’m missing out on, and it makes me sad.

Character flaw.  I admit it.

Instead of going cold-turkey and making myself and my family miserable by not buying anything delicious, I’ve turned the healthy eating pebble into grains of sand I can stomach.

I’m trying to teach me and my children to like healthier snacks by buying more vegetables and having more healthy choices available.  I cut out all chips and pop from the diet (because those are just bad—even if they are good).  But we still have sugar cereal in our cupboard and I get granola bars and cookies to throw in their lunches, and yes, I still have my stash of chocolate chips (but I’m getting better at waiting weeks before I finally open the bag).

But step, by step…grain by grain, we are making improvements in our diet.  At first the lack of chips and Ritz crackers was seen as criminal by my children (and by me whenever I made chicken noodle soup—that just seems wrong without Ritz crackers), but we eventually overcame our anger, and don’t miss them now.

My girls and I are loving the veggie trays for snacking.  They’re colorful and make me happy just looking at them.  What I find hard is forcing myself to take the time to prepare all the veggies (because I’m too cheap to buy the already made veggie trays).

Another way I’ve tried to improve is by drinking more water.  It’s good for me, and I know that it helps curb hunger between meals.  I keep my water bottle filled and know how much I drink by how many times I have to refill it.  Some days I do better than others, but having that bottle on the counter reminds me to drink (which I used to forget to do).

There are so many of you out there that are probably rolling your eyes at this silly post!  You are already healthy and have 10% body fat and your muscles are so toned you burn calories just by smiling!  You are my heroes!  And I am S-L-O-W-L-Y on my way to join you (it might take me 50 years).

And then there are others who may be like me!  To you, I say…We can do this!  We can be healthier.  But we don’t have to do it all at once (unless you’ve just learned you’re diabetic or had a heart attack–then things are a little more critical)…but we must START on the road to better nutrition habits.  Step by step…pebbly sand by pebbly sand…we will improve!  If I can do it…about anyone can.


Related Articles:

Pebbles to Sand 1 – Time Management

Pebbles to Sand 2 – Cleaning/Organization

37 thoughts on “Pebbles to Sand 3: Nutrition

  1. Good for you! Kudos for introducing healthier foods into your life. I have a powerful sweet tooth, too, so eating healthy can be a challenge. I try to not buy it at all, so then it’s not in the house for me to eat. And when I eat healthy, I make it as delicious as possible (minestrone soup is a favorite) so I don’t feel deprived.

  2. Well, this blog post couldn’t have come at a better time. I decided just yesterday that I HAVE to try much harder. Yesterday was the first day of conscientious eating and my stomach growled all night, but that’s ok. I think I’ll be making some soup, as Eagle-Eyed Editor said. Sounds like a good plan.

    • Yes, this blog post (in the cue since I was up cooking in the mountains for 300 girls for the past week) is going to be my goal now as well. Being stressed out at camp and surrounded by food–I resorted to chocolate milk and Twinkie therapy to survive, and probably added an inch to my waistline. Sigh. But I’m back to normal life again…and so excited to only cook for 5. I will NEVER complain again…until I forget in a week or so.

  3. Like you, I don’t eliminate all of the treats. For me, life’s too short not to enjoy ice cream on a summer night. But everything in moderation. I like the 9/10 rule. Out of every 10 things I eat, 9 of them should be healthy. Some days those numbers shift, like when I’m on vacation, but it balances out in the end. 🙂

  4. Total denial is usual a recipe for failure, so good for you for recognizing that. And as Carrie said, we should enjoy some treats in moderation. Giving up soda is fantastic. Carbonated beverages are so unhealthy. And I suspect we’ll soon find out they’re even worse than we think.

    Water is the best liquid we can drink. I voluntarily drink many glasses during the day (it’s not from diabetes—I don’t feel thirsty!). The resulting restroom breaks are good for getting me out of my chair, too. 🙂

    • Yeah, total denial does set you up for failure, usually. It’s funny how your body works. I used to drink soda all the time–had to have it with every dinner. Then we decided to cut it out and at first I craved it so much, but over a few weeks, the craving weakened until now when I have a few sips of a carbonated drink, I feel bloated and sick. Now to see if I can ever get over my weakness for cookies/bread/pastries (chocolate will be last on the list to go).

    • That sounds like a great start! If the fruit is yummy and exciting to you, then you won’t feel like you’re missing out!

    • I agree. I derive MUCHO pleasure from delicious foods. My problem is portion sizes. If I make a batch of cookies, I should just have 1 and eat it slow and savor it, but find that I’ll wolf down 6-7 before I think about it. Sigh!

  5. Great post, Char. Yep, sometimes we have to take baby steps (that’s what I’m trying at my house). A little healthier this year that last year, a little bit better the year after. But I’m never going to give up chocolate.

    • Yes, baby steps are the best. They help your habits become stable and consistent. We’ve slowly cut out carbonated drinks and chips, but that’s about all. I’m totally in agreement with you on chocolate. I had to cook for 300 girls this week at Girl’s camp and only survived because of chocolate milk therapy (every time I got stressed out, I would sneak a chocolate milk from the fridge and sip until my stomach calmed down–my friend was the same…we think we would be alcoholics if we drank; good thing we don’t)

  6. Great post, and I didn’t think it was silly at all. Diabetes runs in my family, so I have to be careful with my carb/sugar intake–especially now that I’m not as active as I used to be. Long gone are the days that I stay toned just by smiling, haha.

    My kids are not big veggie lovers either, but when I put out a tray of crudites with ranch, they’re more likely to snack on it. Like you say, it’s a slow uphill battle!

    • I’m glad I’m not the only one who finds this healthy eating hard to do. I like healthy foods, but they are a pain to scrub and cut and prep to eat. A bag of chocolate chips is so much easier (jk)

  7. Thank you Char for this timely post. This is the time of the year when I struggle most with sweets. You have both related to me and encouraged me. Think I will get the carrots and grapes out today and snack on them today!!

  8. I think being conscious about what you eat is the most important part. Everything else trickles down from there. I don’t deprive myself of any foods I really want because I know it will only make me want to eat more of it when I get to it. But I also don’t pig out, unless it’s something healthy I enjoy eating. I’ve always loved veggies and fruit and I don’t eat beef or pork, so I’m sure it helps. But I cook lots of pasta, pizza, rice, etc because carbs don’t scare me and they shouldn’t scare anyone. I always make sure my plate and my kids’ plate contains carbs, protein and veggies, followed by fruit. If we’re still hungry, a piece of chocolate or a cookie/cake is welcome. None of us are overweight. It may be in my genes, but still, I think having a healthy relationship with food and enjoying eating it is very important. Good luck!

    • You sound like you have the eating good down pat! Good for you! My goal is to have a healthy relationship with food soon!

      • Talking about healthy eating, you should know my favorite food is Nutella. 🙂
        I think I can thank my French upbringing for knowing how to really enjoy the foods I eat. It’s hard with two little kids but I still love to take my time to eat. I’m always amazed at how fast Americans eat and I know there’s no way you can really taste the food by gulping it down. My son has barely 20 minutes to eat his lunch at school, in kindergarten, and he eats nothing. I used to have a whole hour at my school, with a three-course meal.

        • Nutella! That stuff is dang amazing! The problem in my house is that my teenage girls love it too and always seem to beat me to it. I’ll get one delicious dessert or crepe from it to their 20 (or whatever). I find them sneaking in at odd times with a spoon and eating it straight from the jar. Agh! I need to find a good hiding spot for it. And yes…we do eat too fast. That would help me immensely to just slow down and enjoy.

  9. I cut out sugar 6 months ago, and in doing so processed food had to go because it’s full of sugar, and lost 15 kg, so over 30pounds. I feel great. I’ve never slept better, never felt better.

    • Way to go! So was it super hard? Did you crave it for a while, or do you have super human powers I need to be jealous of?

      • LOL I would have liked the super powers. It was very hard. I craved and I had headaches and pains for about a week and then they slowly faded. Every now and then I will see something sweet and think that would be nice, but the longer I go the easier it is. The benefits outweigh the …well the weight. LOL

  10. There’s nothing like having a scary talk with your dr to push you in the right direction
    I’ve learned to love veggie trays and I’ve learned that arugula and watercress can be tamed with mayo and spaghetti sauce
    Ya learn to live with it
    I’m ok as long as I can eat chocolate (dark)

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