Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Food Choices

I have a friend who told me her favorite food was salad ... and her favorite dessert was any type of fruit.

Now I like both salad and fruit - but it would be a stretch to say that they were my favorite food and dessert.

I often envy those people who have a natural taste for all things fresh, natural, and healthy for them. I know that in some cases it has to do with environment. For example in my household, food was a treat, a reward. You did well in something and you got whatever food you wanted. Weekends were marked with a break from the regular food we ate during the week and they featured pizza or a burger or some other form of junk food. So I guess some of that behavior (and taste) is learned.

However, not all. This friend of mine told me that her brothers and sisters love fried chicken and burgers and tons of sweets. They all grew up in the same household, eating the same sort of foods -- but while they were happily munching away on the crispy skin of fried chicken, she'd be peeling the skin off (she'd actually just be having it grilled if there was an option) ... for her, it came naturally. She just didn't have the taste or inclination towards those types of foods. Does she not eat junk food? Yes, she does - but the number of times she has it in the year compared to all the other foods is insignificant -- because she's never had an inclination towards those foods. Her eating junk food is not the same as me eating junk food. It doesn't have the same significance. She's never been overweight (not even slightly). She's always been health conscious and enjoyed healthy food way more than junk food. For me, it's the opposite -- and because of that, I am much more aware of what I eat.

My diet is not perfect, but it's much, much better than before. I'm happy to say that I don't even remember the last time I ate junk food - must have been somewhere around 3 years ago ... I don't miss it. Partly because now I'm vegetarian so the options are limited -- and also because I know if I wanted a veggie burger or fish sandwich, there are are much better and healthier (and tastier) ways I can make something similar at home and enjoy much, much more.

Even at times of stress or when things are really, really hectic (like right now) I've found the key to be having easy to prepare foods at home. Often I'm starving by the time I get home from work -- and that's when the risk to eat something unhealthy is highest -- but I almost always have something ready to eat in the fridge. A lot of times I'll go straight to the kitchen after entering the house, put whatever food I've got prepared in the oven and set it to heat as I go wash up and change. It's made SUCH a difference.

Preparing food in advance and having to already portioned [even my freezer is stocked] is great for those times when I'm just too busy to take the time to prepare something from scratch. It's my new version of fast food :)


  1. I definitely do not have a built in taste meter that registers healthy things higher. Actually, as you can tell from my blog, I pretty much hate anything that grows in dirt (except potatoes. yum.) Vegetables just aren't my thing. I'm pretty jealous of your friend.

  2. Jillian - I love veggies, but I can't go as far as to say that salad is my favorite food. It has definitely taken some effort to change my eating habits -- and I still have a LONG way to go!! :)

  3. It takes time, but I've finally reached the point where super sweet things like icing on cake makes me feel awful (still often tastes good, but I'm working on it!), and fresh fruit, or berries with a bit of vanilla yogurt is one of my favourite snacks.

    I keep working on it!


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