You are NOT what you eat!

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I’m back!  It’s been a couple of months since we last spoke.  I’ve been reframing my food tastes and learning how to cook a bit differently.  My husband and I decided to follow the Whole30 plan which basically is only whole foods for 30 days.  Lots of fruit and vegetables and protein.  That meant deleting a whole bunch of things from our diet…all processed foods and refined sugars were out.  I used to think we ate healthfully, but NOPE.  We weren’t.

Once the detox was complete, we were quite aware of how much junk we were consuming.  What we first learned is that sugar is in EVERYTHING!  If it is packaged, it probably has sugar.  So, taking sugar out of our daily meals was much more challenging than I thought.  The Whole30 recipes that I was following, used dates for sweetness in sauces.  We started eating sweet potatoes (and not the ones you may be used to at Thanksgiving with the mini marshmallows), drinking almond milk and use ghee for sautéing.

The one thing I still crave is Diet Coke.  I didn’t even drink that much before all this, maybe a couple a week.  Chemicals in food also gets their hooks in us.  I started buying organic when I could.  I shopped in the bulk bins.  The guys in the produce department are my new best friends!  I’ve been practicing “conscious eating” which is carefully considering what we put in our bodies.  It’s interesting how we reach for things that are so unhealthy and avoid foods with all sorts of goodness.  The challenge is to make good whole foods taste delicious.

I have been contemplating this part for a couple of months now.  I wasn’t sure if I could share this one.  If you’re like me, you have a hairdresser that you adore and tell everything to.  About a month ago I shared this story with my hairdresser along with my reservations.  She told me to be honest and brave…so here it goes…

Like many people, I have a complicated relationship with food.  I love to cook and feed my family and friends.  I love the smell and definitely the taste!  The conundrum is that I have struggled on and off with an eating disorder for more than 35 years.  I had anorexia as a teenager.  Since then, I seem to be always dieting.  I have even said “I’m a professional dieter”.  Yikes!  Every time I get close to what I think is my “ideal weight” I panic a bit.  I don’t ever want to let myself go back, but the temptation is still there.  Just 5 more pounds…then things start to spiral out of control.

Control.  That’s a funny word.  One of the important things that was behind my thought process is the feeling that I can’t control the world around me.  The truth is, no one can.  The one thing I could control is what I ate (or more precisely, DIDN’T eat).  This is something I continue to work on always.  Years ago, I was on a weeklong yoga training and during that week we were to journal about something that caused us pain or suffering.  I started out so sure that my pain was caused by my lack of patience.  Ha!  As I started journaling and then rereading my thoughts, I laughed when I realized I had “control issues”!  But if course I do!  Many of us do!

So, this time was different.  I didn’t set foot on my scale for the entire 30 days.  My intention was healthful eating and not the number on the scale.  We’ve been continuing on a modified basis, but mostly sticking to the plan.  We have the occasional glass of wine or beer and we don’t worry too much about it.  We’ve even had a dessert or two!  The difference is my tastes have changed.  I no longer crave sugar.  I still enjoy it, but the need to consume it isn’t there anymore.

The recipe I’m including is a Pork tenderloin and cauliflower “rice” bowl.  I am in love with the cauliflower rice!!!  There are a few components to this recipe, so be prepared to spend some time prepping vegetables.

It’s a very interesting exercise in awareness…aware that you’re not what you eat!  You are so much more than that!

5 thoughts on “You are NOT what you eat!”

  1. Well good for you Andrea you have made it past a major hurdle. Sharing with others can be a huge step in dealing with personal issues. My particular issues that I kept hidden for many years were Parkinson’s disease, depression and anxiety/panic attacks. With the support of my wife and two very caring doctors I was able to share my secret with others. It was amazing how good I felt after sharing with others.. it was ok to admit I’m not perfect, that I have issues. We all do. I have always thought of you as a strong person now I see you as an even stronger woman who is willing to do whatever it takes to deal with your issues. Hopefully taking this step will be helpful to you and you can find joy in knowing that sharing your thoughts and feelings about this will help others with whatever issues they may have. I know you have helped at least one person already. Me. Thanks, Shannon and I love you just the way you are. Slightly imperfect just like the rest of us.

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  2. Beautiful and inspiring post- just like you! Thanks for sharing so openly. I don’t think I know anyone who has a completely healthy and detached relationship with food. It is such a focal point of social and family events that it is hard to detangle it from our emotions. Looking forward to your recipes! Much love!

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