Category Archives: Food
Five years ago I began my journey to a healthier lifestyle. In that time I learned that my body is capable of so much more than I had ever believed. I learned how to eat healthier and how to have a new mindset when it came to food. Exercise, once alien to me became near second nature. Dropping the weight was exciting, scary and hard. Hard not only physically but mentally and spiritually as well.
On my walk/run the other day I began to think about my journey. Five years ago, I was in the best physical health of my entire life. Mentally and spiritually however I was a mess. So much of the why I was doing it had to do with my desire for approval from others. Deep in my heart I believed that being loved and accepted meant meeting other peoples idea of who I should be. That by not meeting those ideas, I was a failure.
Losing weight revealed a lot of things that God wanted to shake me free from. It has been more than learning how to care for my body in a better way. It also been letting go of so much that I held onto over the years. Food and being overweight hid so much I hoped to keep hidden. Losing weight, being left without a place to hide left me vulnerable.
I got down to what was supposed to be my optimal weight but I was also miserable. For the most part I did not feel as if my body belonged to me. Today, I’m not at that optimal weight and I am so much happier. I am happy with my eating habits ( some days are better than others) and exercise routine. It has taken me these five years to get here too.
There were and are places I needed to grow, to learn, to be cared for in order to get to this place I’m at now. A much healthier place, physically, spiritually and mentally. I’m still a bit of a mess, but I know in the mess, God is there with me. Losing weight has long term consequences, not only what can be seen but what happens internally. Happiness does not come from the numbers on a scale, or a label size but where one is at on the journey. This is a journey I will be on for the rest of my life.
What is over all health? To be it looks like a balance in different areas of life working together as one. It looks like this for myself.
Mental Health: taking time out for myself. Sometimes this takes the form of a quiet day away from people. Or going for a workout, especially when I don’t feel like it. Other times it means allowing myself to feel my emotions, face them head on.
Spiritual Health : When I am distant from God, not praying as often or seeking His word my soul feels it. I am darker, more pessimistic and prone to anger. I don’t want to engage with people. Not in a self care kind of way but in a selfish way.
Physical Health: By working out and eating well, I feel good. I feel energized and ready to take on the day or task. I sleep better when I am consistent. My disposition is better when the food I eat is healthy and nutritious.
I can only be healthy when all three of these elements work together. When I lack in one area, the others suffer. It is important to be aware of my needs, recognize when I need more of one in my life.
My relationship with food is rather complex as it so often reprensents comfort to me. As it does for so many and in times of stress is easy to run towards.
Which I did. Barely working out or not at all. Eating whatever came across my way.
Why? Because life had become busy and stressful. Eating all the bad stuff felt good, for a brief moment. Not working out made feel like I did skipping school as a teenager. Another brief moment of being bad but then comes guilt.
Getting back into the routine is hard. The body adjusts just as quickly to bad habits as to good ones. The good news is that now I long for the good habits. To eat better and exercise.
While there may times when we get off the health track, it does not mean we can not go back. Don’t allow a bad day or week to prevent you from being healthy. There will be ebbs and flows, ups and downs.
Keep going, keep moving. It’s worth it.
One of my favorite things to eat during the summer ( and basically all year round) are popsicles! On a hot day they just seem to hit the spot. While there are some great, healthy options available in grocery stores, I wanted to attempt making my own as I am adding to my kitchen adventures.
I found molds at Dollar Tree ( a favorite store of mine!), pinned at least twenty popsicle recipes on Pinterest and headed for the grocery store. For my first attempt ( which turned out better than I expected I must say) was melon, lime and a few with raspberries. So far I have used fresh fruit but I using frozen should work as well.
I let them freeze overnight and they popped out easily after running the mold under warm water. The only thing I would say is to not pull out the the stick as I did. This made it not stay in when removing them from the mold.
Now I have a healthier version of my favorite snack. Plus popsicles are a great way to hydrate too!
In just a few weeks the Christmas season will be upon us. With it comes those sweets and treats that emerge during this time of year. The above chart is helpful in swapping out ingredients for others. Allowing you and your loved ones to continue to enjoy all those recipes handed down.
I love popcorn. It is a great snack as it can be a better alternative than other snacks. In the past, I’ve used those prepackaged bags of popcorn. But the amount of salt and butter often contained in them began to concern me.
There had to be a better way where I could better control the amount of salt and butter in my snack.
Using either your microwave ( make sure there is plenty of ventilation. My bowl exploded on me one night due to this.) Or stove top as I have been doing it. I use coconut oil, a bit of sea salt and a bowl full of yum! Add in your own spices, trail mix or chocolate.
Make a few bags ahead of time to bring into work or a go to snack when out and about!
What is your favorite way to enjoy popcorn?