"Eat Real Food"

I read an interesting article called Unhappy Meals recently.

Do you eat real food? When is the last time you chopped up a bunch of veggies on a bed of dark greens and sliced some tasty protein source over that (eggs, beans fish, meat)? Little olive oil, some garlic, OM NOM NOM NOM NOM…

Breakfast? Did you eat it? It’s a good time to get some whole grains in.

Now, I eat five small meals a day. It’s what works for me, but I’m not saying everyone has to do this for optimum health. (In fact, I’m quite a fan of the sensibleness of the No S Diet).

So, this is a fairly normal day for me:

Breakfast: Cottage cheese pancakes (1/2 c. cottage cheese, 1 egg, 1/2 c. raw oatmeal. Whizz it in a blender, cook it like a pancake). It’s a good pre-workout meal. Some people mash a banana on it. I could see doing that if you like bananas. I don’t. I actually salt them, rather than add something sweet.

Second Breakfast: Apple, 1T natural peanut butter.

Luncheon: Dark lettuce leaf salad with red peppers, mushrooms, carrots, celery, 1T chopped bacon, 1T olive oil and red wine vinegar dressing and 2 boiled eggs.

Tea: A dip made from 1c cottage cheese mixed with 1/4 c. chopped olives and some soy sauce. 1 whole sliced red pepper as dipping veggie. (Could be anything, but it’s what I had on hand that sounded good. It’d be tasty with almost any veggies).

Dinner: 2c. Homemade chicken soup (chicken carcass soup. Leftover chicken carcass cooked all day with water in a crock pot, take the meat off, toss the bones, then add some carrots, celery, garlic, fresh ginger, and salt) and a small sweet potato with a pat of butter. I could have added some brown rice to the soup, but was craving the sweet potato.

(A large male should probably add “Supper” and eat like a real hobbit. I’m just five two, so five meals is plenty for me).

Yesterday was heavy on the eggs and cottage cheese. Some days it’s tuna — depending on my mood. But the point is that it’s “real” food. Obviously, I don’t exactly believe in going hungry and because I lift, I try to get some protein with every meal. The apple and peanut butter weren’t ideal, but not bad, either. I was having a sweet craving.

My basic nutrition plan is to make sure I eat five small meals a day and have some protein and really complex carbs with either veggies or fruit for each meal. (Breakfast was a fail for this day). My complex carbs tend to be things like oatmeal or brown rice or sweet potatoes. (Nothing wrong with white potatoes in moderation. I just happen to like baked sweet potatoes a lot). <grin> It’s a reasonably easy way to get your “five a day”, if that’s what you’re shooting for nutrition-wise. I also, you notice, do not do as many weight lifters do and use MRP (Meal Replacement products) very often. Oh, sure, I’ll chug a protein drink on days I teach just because it’s not practical to stop the class to sit down to a salad at Second Breakfast. But, I consider that sub-optimum.

I think real food is best. I think it satisfies better than the plethora of low-fat, low-carb “products” out there. I also think starving yourself is unhealthy. I think shopping the outside aisles of the grocery store is a good habit. Obviously I hadda go down the cereal aisle for the oatmeal. But I think that trying to make sure that most of what you eat is stuff that grows, rather than has been processed all to hell is a good idea.

When you want a treat (I have one about once a week), have something “real” again. Go ahead and buy a freshly made doughnut. Have a serving (1/2 c. by the way!) of Ben and Jerry’s. Have the really good chocolate truffle. I had a wonderful cannoli on Sunday as my treat, as well as a glass of wine with dinner and it was delightful! Life’s too short to eat crap food.

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