Most of what gets posted around here is from me, Kezia, but Jared is a huge part of the journey and I’ve wanted him to share a bit from his journey for a while and here it is. We come from very different backgrounds food wise, and he has a lot of wisdom from the ride, a Texan carnivore who married a once raw foodist, now healthy food blogger… It’s been an interesting journey for both of us and we’re going to do a few posts in the area of navigating food in relationships, but to start I shot a quick 10 questions at him HERE if you want to get to know Jared a bit more before reading!
Kezia and I have both been on some pretty radical food journeys in our lives! Granted, these journeys have been very very different, but they are journeys nonetheless. Early in her life, Kezia spent an entire decade as a vegetarian. Then after briefly being a very picky meat-eater, she swung back to eating an entirely raw vegan food diet for two more years.
Reflecting back on this ongoing journey of slow but steady change, here are a few areas I’ve most enjoyed seeing progress:
More veggies on my plate!
Because I’ve never been a huge fan of vegetables, we’ve figured out creative ways to gradually increase vegetables in my meals. You have to find what works for you! Rather than having a side of veggies isolated on the plate I have to stomach through, I’ll make sure they are mixed into the meal so that the veggies take on the flavors of the main entree, and I gradually get accustomed to enjoying the taste of that vegetable. And yes, we trick my mind like a 4-year-old! We have also experimented around with finding my favorite clean salad dressing and my favorite salad toppings so that salads become an appealing lunch option.
Less and less refined sugar.
The more I’ve moved towards honey, date, and fruit-sweetened desserts, the less I crave refined sugar. However, it didn’t happen over-night. It has taken lots and lots of small decisions like bringing a cookie from home to work so that I can opt out of office birthday cake, or choosing an americano instead of a sweet coffee drink. Thankfully, with a progression away from refined sugar, my cravings has adjusted as well, and now my body ends up feeling noticeably better when I avoid it.
I LOVE to eat out. It’s a big part of what makes food fun for me. However, because eating out feels like a treat, it was also an excuse for picking the largest portioned, fattiest thing on the menu. Why not? It’s a treat, right? Whether it was a Texas-sized chicken-fried steak with mashed potatoes, a truffle bacon mac ’n cheese entree, or a half-pound bacon cheeseburger, I knew how to eat out, and boy was I going to be full. Over time I’ve realized that making very small adjustments to what I order will make the choice gradually healthier, but also preserve the fun of eating out. I still don’t order a salad when we go to restaurants, but I try and make a few decisions to make a “fun” option work in my favor. Kezia always reminds me of how “great” my Chipotle order is compared to what I used to order a couple of years ago. I made the slow change to a bowl instead of a burrito in order to drop the sizable tortilla. Then I changed from white rice to brown rice. Then I dropped the sour cream, and a while later, the cheese too. I’ve added in corn salsa, and extra pico de gallo (mild salsa), and voila, suddenly my body feels great after eating Chipotle and I still love my burrito bowl!