My "less meat" adventure has begun. On my Thanksgiving plate I had a pile of green beans, 2 fork fulls of mashed potatoes, cauliflower and about 2 ounces of turkey breast.....I think this was the first thanksgiving I that I felt both satisfied and "healthy" at the end.....meaning I didn't feel tired or like I was going to explode.
Though I have realized that meat in some way shape or form has been the bulk of my points in a day. Taking meat out has brought me a new "point" challenge in my Weight Watchers journey. Yesterday I found myself having 19, of my 29 total points for the day, left to use for DINNER. I was hungry but not that hungry. So I have some things to figure out....besides the change in my grocery list so I can get some new ingredient staples into the house. I can say that while I haven't gone 100% meat free in the last 3 days, I do feel really good.
Flexitarian. My new word. I had no idea this term existed. But now that I do, it probably most accurately describes my changing approach to food. Food and I have an interesting relationship. It's certainly something that we can't just stop consuming. We must eat to live. There is no choice here. When the very thing that is required for life is the very thing that is ripping your body apart.....things get interesting. For the last 3 years I have "cleaned" our grocery list. There are a few random items that still come into the house for family members or the occasional treat but for the most part, things are made from scratch. Ingredient lists are read for every item purchased - I do mean every item.
I have a list of around 100 ingredients that I cannot consume. When I say "ingredient" I do not mean "milk" or "tree nuts", I mean when you purchase table salt there is an ingredient list. When you purchase milk, cheese, chicken, a can of beans or a package of organic anything.....there is an ingredient list. Yes, did you know that your meat actually has a list of ingredients? I nearly had a meltdown in the meat isle when I realized that....and then completely swore off any and all Jennie-O products as they made me want to cry and curse at the same time.
3 years ago I was couch bound and incapacitated for months and doctors had no idea why. Thanks to the Lord providing me a trail of breadcrumbs to follow, I was able to shuffle my way to an answer. Food was making me sick. I was in so much pain doctors initially thought I was quickly developing rheumatoid arthritis. My speech was slurred and I couldn't think clearly. My joints hurt so badly that some days I couldn't even hold the spoon to feed myself the food my husband had cut up for me.
So now, I'm 35, I've figured out the things that I can and cannot eat. Which also includes how they are cooked.....no slow roasting, no crock pot cooking and no fermented foods. Inviting me to a dinner party isn't really something people usually want to tackle....or at least I discourage it. Frankly people don't realize the complexity of what goes into me being able to eat food that won't cause me to have a reaction (or at least 1 of the 18 different reactions I can have). When people ask for a list they expect me to give them a list of maybe five different foods not a list of 100 ingredients that can be found in food.
Most people who hear a little about my food sensitivities think its some sort of crazy lady, food conspiracy, oh my gosh don't stand too close, she might just stab you with a carrot thing. Once they hear that when I took all the ingredients out of the house my family started to develop sensitivities to the ingredients as well....they pause to rethink....but only for a moment. If, if, they have a desire to learn more - and lets be honest, it's always the mom's - I will email them the information I have compiled. Once they have read through that and their eyes and minds are open....they start asking me questions, often.
I'm totally un-intimidated by this new foody adventure. I am looking forward to feeling even better than I do, looking even better and perhaps increasing the speed of my weight loss as an added bonus (but my focus is still only on those 2 pounds per week). I only eat whole grain, whole wheat bread if I have purchased it myself because anything "enriched" or containing a corn product will cause a reaction. No soy products what-so-ever, they all cause a reaction and I've read some things about how soy is processed in the body and while it may be good for skin care it is not good for human consumption (I also can't eat animals who have eaten a diet of mostly corn and soy products). But I can't source those sites for you right now because it was long ago and in the many, many, many different resources I've used over the years.....my brain just cannot file it all. Nothing fermented - so no yogurt or vinegar...we'll see what else that may include, like miso paste...I'm not trying that one.
In the long run, this may just simplify how I eat by taking out the one large, questionable, category I've had to deal with. Organic grass fed beef is expensive so I have a feeling we will be saving some money in the future.
My hubby is a self-proclaimed "meatatarian" and he has no fear of me trying to convert him but my journey with food has opened his mind to a lot of things. IF he chooses to join me, great! But for now it will just be me, figuring this out, for me.
If anyone out there is interested, here are some things I have found in the last few days that might be helpful: (Please forgive my blogger incompetence in not knowing how to insert their page graphics)
Blessings for the journey He has you on,