After years of yo-yo dieting, I have found that being a thoughtful eater is a better choice. Being conscious of the food choices I make, and how they relate to the world around me seems to be a better approach to healthy eating practices. I've been researching and reading a lot about being a conscious eater in an effort to not only make better food choices, but also to take better care of the earth and it's resources.
I grew up in a family that loved to eat and cook. A lot of my eating habits were not good ones and being overweight has been the result of that. It would be easy to just throw up my hands and say "too little, too late" but I know that every day is a gift and how I choose to live it is my chioce. Taking small steps can have BIG results and that is what I'm holding one to.
Let me tell you a bit about my food history. I grew up with grandparents and parents that were avid gardeners. My paternal grandpa grew the most amazing watermelons you can imagine. It was always exciting when we went to visit them in the summertime, when the melons were ripe on the vine, because he took pleasure in walking to the garden and 'plugging' the melons for us! He'd take a knife out of his pants, and cut a plug from the melon for us to taste. When we found one that we particularly liked, he'd pick it and we'd take it to our grandma to cut up and eat.
My maternal grandma lived in town, but she had a small garden plot where she grew, among other things, ground cherries. Now, if you have never heard of or eaten a ground cherry you don't know what you are missing. These little berries were then made into the best pie in the world. This same grandma made huge molasses, sugar, and date pinwheel cookies. She was always cooking.
I grew up in a small town but there was always a big garden. My mother canned hundreds of quarts of fruits and vegetables from our own garden every year. Her sauerkraut was amazing. She and her sister had a noodle making business for several years and later my husband and I took it over for them, selling the noodles to a local restaurant. She would make homemade angel food cakes with the egg whites that were like eating a sweet cloud. They were so light and fluffly and they never had trouble selling the cakes. They were in high demand. My dad loved working in the garden and planted many varieties of vegetables and took pride in having the first fresh picked tomato in the neighborhood. For many years my mom's siblings and all their kids-my cousins-got together the day after Thanksgiving for a day of candy making. The candy was then divided up between the families and used as gifts through the holiday.
When I met my husband, food was still a big part of our life. He was a vegetarian. I grew up in a Mennonite home that ate a lot of chicken, meat loaf, pot roast, and fried bologna. It was a strange mix for sure! So, I had to learn to cook in a much different way than I had in the past. I learned to adapt some of my cooking to vegetarian style. I found that it did take some effort, but the tastes were just as wonderful and varied. We ate a vegetarian diet for the first 6 years of our marraige, then gradually changed, first eating only tuna, then adding other meats over time.
We've been married for 36 years and in the last year we have begun to have more meatless meals than meals with meat. We aren't vegetarians, but we do eat vegetarian at least 4 days a week. My husband still likes the occasional hamburger, and I can't imagine a life without chicken. I love chicken. But, in the pursuit of better health we have chosen to make some changes that will not only effect our physical bodies, but also effect the world we live in. Much is said these days about being 'green'.
Eating consciously is not only to benefit the body, but to benefit the earth's resources.I think you'll find this blog fun, interesting, and educational and if you would, take time to leave me a comment!