Today is the last Q&A day for Redeeming the Table on Food Stuff, and why we eat the way we eat. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them. But, before I dive into the last portion of questions (which will all be put together under the 'About' section), I wanted to express a little more.
I was reading a friend's words today and she mentioned how story was important, about how we got to the conclusion we found. I think of people talking and people telling stories. What stood out was her examples of not simply giving the "5 Tips" on how to achieve a goal (one of them talking about grain-free eating), but weaving a story of the struggle in how we got to the other end of the conflict. I couldn't help but think, "Is she talking specifically to me?"
Regardless, I wanted to provide some links to old posts & how we as a family got here.
Ultimately, I REALLY love to eat. I am a sensate person & enjoy food SO much. However, when I was hitting 200 lbs (and during 1st & 2nd pregnancy over that), that love of eating & sedentary lifestyle didn't help that love.
What Got Me Thinking
When I hear the words from Ben, "my doctor said, 'good thing you don't smoke, because you would have lived half your life with your genetics & cholesterol (age 18),'" how can I not want to love him through cooking well.
When I see various doctors, one being a genetic counseling doctor for our oldest saying that she might possibly have Prader-Willi Syndrome, which the number one way it affects the person is through obesity because they literally don't get satiated when they eat...how can I not take that into account through lifestyle changes?
When the last time I saw myself as in shape, or body even remotely beautiful was before puberty...why would I not choose to love myself better?
When I have two little girls who are looking to their mama as a model of what a high self-esteem, healthy eating patterns are...how can I ignore this?
I want my girls to love food.
I don't want them to be the typical girl who shys away from finishing her dinner, or not asking for seconds, because it's a "fat thing." I want them to know what good choices are when it comes to food. I don't want them to become obese, have Type II Diabetes, or other health problems, because I allowed for poor choice making in their early years. Will they be out of my grasp when they are at friend's houses and get to choose for themselves? Yes. But, I want to teach & give them the tools needed in making good food choices.
I love that V loves roasted beets & brussels sprouts. I love that Tay can eat bowl after bowl of salad. I would rather my girls love food, the processes it came about and know how to treat it and themselves well by age six; rather, than being a stellar reader or writer.
Every mother has different "prides" when it comes to teaching their children. I see the teaching of eating a balanced meal, enjoying a good sweet treat, and learning the feasts & fasts of life as foundational in their life, because it is in the plenties & wants of life that are inevitable. This is why I feel so strongly about food, and why I am constantly reading the whys and hows, along with the beautiful essays & stories on food. God said to tend the garden, and to treat our bodies as temples. I have done a poor job with that in the past, and I choose differently now.
This is also my attempt to share with you that you are not your past, but you have a choice to write something new for yourself when it comes to health & food. I share this, because I passionately believe in communing around the table with good food. I want you to share the table with me.
Question & Answer: Logistics on How We Arrived Here in Our Health & Budget
The way you eat looks good & healthy, but it also appears rather idealistic & expensive. How can one actually afford to eat this way?
I agree that eating this way has increased our family food budget. When buying meat from animals fed a la natural (grass-fed for cattle & lamb, not just slops for the pig, and critters for the poultry) from a grocery store, you will be paying A LOT. When I was at the Farmer's Market and saw the prices for grass-fed beef rump roast, my jaw dropped. They were asking somewhere along the lines of $35 (or more) for a 4 lb rump roast. That's $8.75/lb & ridiculously expensive.
We buy a ¼ or ½ of a beef cow, which drops the price significantly. Rather than paying that $8.75/lb, or sometimes more depending on the cut, we pay a flat fee of $2.35-2.55/lb (farmers vary). Pork costs more and you get less meat. Pastured eggs vary from town to town, but in our town you see them maxing out at $6.50 a dozen. I find that expensive. We get our eggs from our friends for half that price.
Eating meat proteins from sustainable, reliable & ethical places does cost more than buying a box of macaroni & cheese. However, with high cholesterol on Ben's side, we view the upfront costs of eating this way now will save us the long term costs of healthcare later. I hear prescription drugs are mightily expensive these days.
What else contributes to a health filled life?
Aside from nutrition, I workout at a crossfit gym, which I have found incorporates an all body moving program. We do everything from Olympic lifts (cleans, jerks, squats) to met-cons (box jump, push up, run). The movements serve as functional movements one would make in a day.
When I began the gym in August 2010, I was overweight, out of shape, had major stress & anxiety and finally decided for myself that I needed and wanted better for my life. Insert joining Jogo. Getting regular exercise combined with eliminating the majority of grains (primary emphasis on gluten) and refined sugars has allowed me to not run in circles mentally of death & the end of life.
On top of eating & exercise, I would say a huge contributor to a health filled life is getting enough sleep. I would habitually stay up two hours past Ben and notice that my anxiety level & functioning capabilities were out of whack. For myself, staying up too late simply leads to more harm than good mentally & spiritually, which leads to anxiety stomach aches & worry.
That's what I have found to be helpful in my life, along with taking fish oil supplements, 5,000 IU of Vitamin D daily (I live in WA), and try to keep my water intake high as well.
Additional Posts on Food, Health & this Journey
I also wrote about cooking, baking & eating Paleo in this post.