I’m not sure how I feel about New Year’s resolutions. Apparently a lot of people make them and they don’t stick. Some people do manage to find the means to achieve them. Because I am “glass half empty” kind of person, I like to assume that people who do not meet their resolutions feel bad about themselves when the next year rolls around. This seems very counterproductive. The point of resolutions is self betterment. Even if you don’t meet them you should feel proud you tried, right?
I like the idea of making resolutions, but I believe in being realistic. I haven’t really made any before because I automatically assumed I would fail too. I am going to try to challenge myself when it comes to food. Doing it for a year seems rather ridiculous so I am going to try for just a month.
Over the past two months I feel like I have eaten pounds of butter, sugar, and meat. While I eat moderately healthy dinners at home, I have been going from party to party and stuffing myself with snack food and cookies. While I haven’t actually gained weight thanks to working out over an hour every day of the week (and my awesome metabolism), I feel rather ill when I wake up in the morning. So starting Jan 1st, I am going to make some changes in my eating habits to make up for the excess fats and sugars.
1) No processed sugar. Someone I know is doing this right now. I haven’t really talked to him about how he feels, but I can imagine it is hard. Not only are mammals addicted to sugar, it is in a lot of food we eat. While I generally stay away from processed food, I like my raspberry yogurt in the morning, cereal, bread, stir fry sauce, etc. Oh, and I am obsessed with baking. What does this mean? No eating out, plain yogurt, no weekend baking sessions, and oh yes, withdrawal.
2) Eating meat only once a week. Vegetarian and vegan is all the rage right now. Just yesterday I read an article by Mark Bittman, an author and journalist, on eating mostly vegan. While it may work for some, I believe that humans are omnivores. Omnivores eat a variety of food including meat. Meat is full of protein. Protein is important. Oh and did I mention I am obsessed with steak? There are all sorts of enviromental reasons not to eat meat. Instead of cutting it out all together I am going to practice the truism “everything in moderation” and try to only eat meat once per week. This will 1) be better for the environment and 2) make me appreciate the meat I do eat a lot more.
3) No unhealthy snacking I do not like showing up at parties with nothing to eat except candy, and crackers and dip. That goes for lab meeting too. I could practice self control, but it seems easier to just not go. Just kidding.
What do I hope to accomplish? Get healthier. Not sacrifice nutrition. Practice self control. Feel better about the food I eat. What do I hope to prove? Nothing really. I just enjoy challenges.
This week’s menu plan is a test run of my resolutions for January. Each meal is vegetarian and incorporates at least one bean or cheese for protein. I’m still on the seasonal kick so bear with me. I’d like to start my month today, but I am visiting family soon and I am pretty sure dietary restriction are not appreciated.
SATURDAY-Spinach and lettuce salad with carrots, large white beans, walnuts, olives, etc.
SUNDAY-Mexican pizza. No sugar-filled red sauce. Instead there will be a black bean puree with jack cheese, cilantro, tomato and corn (not in season, woops).
MONDAY-Roasted seasonal veges (turnip, carrots, winter squash, chard) over couscous. Maybe I’ll throw in some feta.
TUESDAY-Homemade hummus and vege pitas.