I’ve recently found myself very fascinated with the trend of “food diaries”, little collages of what people ate in a day. We are what we eat, right? Right! Everything you eat – how you eat, when you eat, the portions you eat… These forces dictate the shape of your body, and even your mood, morale, and wellness. I love being able to peep into a day of someone’s life and connect the dots with their diet and their physical appearance (and even their level of health/fitness)… to learn.
…Being so passionate nutrition, you’d think I’d have it all figured out for myself by now. I’m still learning what is right and wrong for my body, how much to eat, when to eat, which foods my body is sensitive to. It’s never an easy process because there is a lot of sorting through what the mind wants, what the body needs, and what the heart CRAVES…
BREAKFAST: 2 scrambled eggs with bacon bits, baby bella mushrooms, and unpasteurized butter. Goat milk/Almond milk cappuccino. Ezekiel toast with organic peanut butter, 1 banana.
SNACK: About 1/4 cup of mixed raw nuts and blueberries
LUNCH: Spinach salad topped with left-over chicken, apple chunks, hemp seeds, nuts, olive oil and lemon juice. 1 smoothie with zucchini, mixed greens, 1/2 banana, a few strawberries, hemp protein
SNACK: My Homemade instant oatmeal, blueberries and walnuts, half a apple. Goat milk cortado.
DINNER: Homemade hamburger patty with bacon over a spinach salad, with avocado, mixed greens, baby bella mushrooms, and tomatoes. I also ate some kimchi I forgot to photograph! Good bugs people, don’t forget your good bugs.
SNACK: More nuts with chocolate and coconut shavings. Also a cup of tea had joined in on the fun!
This is a rather typical day of meals for me… There are times I eat so very little and times I out-eat my husband and son put together, but more and more I aim for better consistency and portion control. (I have a tendency to want to gorge then fast). The goal should to be to never feel hungry but to also never be stuffed. Feeling “satiated” is a confusing balance to find. When one feels the need to overeat, is this the body telling you it’s time to replenish, restock, and refuel? Is that the body speaking? Could be. Or it could also be something like spikes in insulin levels and blood sugar. Especially if you’ve had a lot of sugar or carbs in your suddenly, and ESPECIALLY if you have inflammation from, say…, antibiotics anybody? You may suffer uncontrollable cravings and dreams of food because something’s out of whack. Well, all that should be a post all in itself…
Moving on, I think it’s good to rest from food(s). Although this is a typical day for me, the following day, I may (within reason) rest from bread/grains, or protein, or healthy fats, but I rarely skip a meal all together. Some days I’ll snack more often, and other days I’ll choose the more standard 3 meals in a day to allow rest upon my digestion between meals. I feel consistency within phases is beneficial, which is going back to the idea of rest periods as well. If you’re curious about trying this type of cycling, just pick a day to eat less protein than usual and more veggies/carbs. Or a day with less carbs and more protein. You don’t want to cause yourself to feel hungry, but resting organs from working in certain ways is beneficial for their endurance. Think of it as a muscle… you WANT to work it to strengthen it, but then you rest it so that the muscle rebuilds and replenish itself after the damage which causes it to strengthen!
I try to eat very calorie dense. Meaning, I aim to pack-in a lot of calories into small portions of food. This is because I’m incredibly active and burn a lot of energy/fuel and require a high amount of daily calories to maintain weight (about 2,200-3000 calories daily), but eating a lot of food at one time gives me digestive stress. “Clean” whole food calories also do not equal the calories in less healthy foods, meaning, you have to eat more when you eat clean to maintain weight. Think, adding butter, oil, nuts, whole milk, avocados, homemade dressings, and toppings to everything. These types of high calorie items are not only a great way to dress up a meal, it’s WHERE THE CALORIES ARE. So, opposite is true if you are trying to lose weight – eat less toppings and fixings when trying to shed pounds.
I like to get in the bulk of my calories early in the day. Breakfast is the most important meal, they say, and I love eating with that in mind! I treat myself to an extra big breakfast every morning. After the night’s fast, it’s a good thing. Ok now, don’t go telling me you aren’t a breakfast or morning person – because I never was either. We can condition our bodies into different habits and routines, and I did just that. I used to always skip breakfast and just eat lunch and dinner, and lunch was typically a cinnamon roll and a coffee drowned in caramel syrup. Yeahhhh. My breakfasts are now my “me” time before the kids get up, and I take the time to eat slowly (which is UBER important!) and get in all my most important nutrients and bulk of my calories. Plus I read, enjoy the quiet and simply set the pace for the rest of the day.
…Enjoyed this post? Let me know in the comments so I know to make more of them or not! ;)