A few of you have asked me what changes I made early on in my journey to quitting processed food. In September 2012 I joined Weight Watchers (they have a nursing mom’s track). I hit a plateau in losing my baby weight and didn’t know where to turn. I was tired, a hungry nursing mom, and had no clue about proper portion sizes. Some days I would eat a ton and others I would barely eat anything. My metabolism was all over the place and I was completely addicted to sugar and processed food and realized that I had this addiction for the past seven years.
Just to delve into my addiction if anyone can relate, I would literally wake up in the morning thinking about food. I would crave *Chick-fil-a sandwiches (they have almost 100 ingredients) and their lemonade that has loads of refined sugar. I developed terrible habits during both of my pregnancies and craved either super salty or super sweet food. I would indulge in the majority of my cravings, not really thinking about the effect these choices would have on my own body and my two year old son (at the time) who was with me every step of the way, watching me, and developing the same addiction as his mommy.
*Below pic is from September 2012…can’t believe I’m posting it. This is the pic that helped me decide to change the food I was eating!
Around the time I started weight watchers, I found Lisa’s blog, 100daysofrealfood.com. I decided to do weight watchers while eating as much “real food” as possible. I decided that if I was going to make a big change, I might as well dive in head first. The changes I made early on were crucial to my success in weaning my palette from sugar and fake food. One small change I made was incorporating more fruits and vegetables into my daily dietary intake. I never craved fruits and vegetables so I knew I had to force myself to eat them.
I remember walking through Walmart and being so discouraged because I just didn’t know where to begin. I went to the frozen section and bought a big bag of frozen fruit, Great Value brand. It contained frozen grapes, peaches, mango, strawberries, and pineapple. I made a small goal to put a bowl of frozen fruit on my kitchen island every morning to snack on throughout the day. I chose frozen fruit because it tastes sweeter than fresh fruit :o). I actually enjoyed this refreshing snack and noticed that Noah wanted to share with me every day. After a few weeks of snacking on the fruit, I made it a goal to eat fruit with every meal of the day. A bonus is that most fruits and vegetables are zero points if you are familiar with Weight Watchers! Somewhere along the way I started loving fresh fruit, and even craving it. Even right now as I’m writing this post, I’m craving fresh pineapple!
What started out as a weight loss journey turned into an eye opening, in some cases jaw dropping journey of discovering the harm that chemicals, pesticides, food dyes, additives, etc…can do to our body over a long period of time. Any mom has an overwhelming urge to protect her children. I have been blown away by the things I didn’t know about our food supply. I’ll continue to share bits and pieces of my journey each week, including the way I added more vegetables to my diet. There is no mystery though. I forced myself to eat fruits and vegetables. Then I realized I love them and that for the first time in my life, I appreciate food that comes from the dirt of the earth. It inspires me and makes sense in my spirit to eat this way.
My husband and I are still navigating what this means for our family. I can honestly say I do not feel like I’m missing out, I don’t view this as a “diet”, and I feel better than I’ve felt in my entire life. A big reason I started this blog is to share our journey, share our struggles and our victories, and learn from each of you! I also think that just knowing someone who is making these changes can inspire change because it doesn’t seem so far off. Thanks for following along. Feel free to share in the comments how you incorporate more fruit in your day! And if you want to wean yourself from refined sugar, go buy yourself a big frozen bag of fruit! Hopefully it helps you like it helped me! And please don’t fret too much in the very beginning about only buying organic fruit. At least for me, I just had to take things one step at a time. Celebrate your small victories because every positive choice you make empowers you to make another one.
*I have a special place in my heart for Chick-fil-a because I grew up eating there. I still go there, just not nearly as frequently as I used to. I do not buy the Chick-fil-a chicken sandwich anymore, and when Noah is with me he doesn’t get the fried nuggets (although I know he will go with grandparents and get them and I’m fine with that, I just don’t want it to be a consistent part of his diet). Food babe investigated Chick-fil-a and here are her findings. I hope in the future they can make some changes in their ingredients list.