SpringCleanEating – Day 23

Day 23 – 7 Days left!

Woke up, had my water and made myself a bowl of oatmeal with almond milk, organic, raw, unfiltered honey (like 1 tsp), a small pat of Kerry Gold butter, a teeny pinch of salt, and added chopped pears. I had a slice of AppleGate Farms ham on the side for my protein. Full and good.

In my fridge:

I have a cut up banana loaf that Nicole Moneer told me about. I really love that loaf because it’s made of just oats, honey, eggs, salt, coconut oil, bananas, and I add a little cinnamon. It’s dense, and delicious. I cut them up into squares and store them in my zip-top baggie in my fridge so I can pop a couple of bites in my mouth as a snack, along with Persian cucumbers (great veggie I like to chew on or chop and eat along with carrots, spinach or Romaine lettuce and Daikon radishes)

I have a beef veggie stew that I modified from a great soup my girlfriend’s mom made for me. I put two cans of organic tomato sauce with about two cans of filtered water in a pot, and throw in frozen mixed veggies of your choice. And I add hot sauce because I like spice in my food, and because capsaicin. If you aren’t aware, this beautiful ingredient is high in anti-oxidants and vitamins A and C. Here are some other benefits.

I have low glycemic sugar fruit like blueberries, Clementines, pears and apples, but for right now I’m only taking one serving of fruit a day. Since my normal diet had more fruits than veggies, I needed to swing that around, so now I have more veggies than fruit. A hard transition because, like any habit, I have to retrain my neurotransmitters and build a new path.

Think about how long it takes to make a path on a large patch of grass. The number of times you have to walk back and forth to start seeing an indention of a path in the grass, and eventually the area wears down, revealing a new path.

It doesn’t take overnight. It takes persistence.

You have to stick to it for that path to be revealed. That’s what we have to do to transform one habit into another habit. But you have to want it.

And in my case, I want it. Badly.

When I grew up, my staple home diet was a Northwestern and South Indian food mix. I think primarily South Indian food went into my belly, though, since my Mumbai (Northwestern Indian) Mom cooked for my Malayalee (South Indian) Dad. She had a lot to learn, and she had to get it right. And she wasn’t using a lot of appliances. Let me find a picture of the coconut grater she used…

ah, here is a video —

Never mind the music and the advertisement.

Just picture this pretty mama of mine:

Mommy cropped

singing her own song, as she sat and scraped, and scraped for grated coconut. She had that same beat you hear in the video. I got a little tear in my eye recognizing that beat.

The day would go by in the kitchen as she peeled, sliced, cut, chopped, grinded, mixed, strained, heated and eventually, by the time the sun was going down, served.

Man, I love my mom like crazy, thinking about all she did, just so we could eat well.

This is probably why I looked like this back in the day:


Well, as much as I loved her cooking, I got so tired of eating Indian food allllllllllllll the time. Anyone from any country will know what I’m talking about. Whether you’re Greek, Filipino, Russian, Mexican, Chinese, etc. If your parents were immigrants, you ate their food, and you ate that more than you ate American food. And if you were like me, when you busted out of what you thought was Ethnic Food Prison, you’d bathe in pizza, hot dogs, hamburgers, hot wings, pasta, sausage and peppers, calzones, and whatever you could get your taste buds into that you saw among your friends, television and Food Network.

Don’t get me wrong – that was the most fun I ever had in terms of eating and flavors of food. PURE joy for the mind. But later, has been pure hell to remove from the pockets of my body that it was all stored in. And I had no idea how much better I would feel without all that, all the time.

I worked out like a maniac back in the late ’80s – ’90s. I worked out at the “Bally’s North Shore” (or was it “North Shore Bally’s?” — either way…), I got my membership when I was in high school and discovered Aerobics I and II. Anyone remember that? I worked my butt off to the point where I’d complete Aerobics I and stay for Aerobics II, and then hit the weights.

I was in a dance group in school, in poms and in band. Joined a bunch of things because it kept me from being at home. Kept me with people. (I like people :))

I worked out all the time. I eventually got a job there at the reservation desk and then the front desk. Then I was licensed to be a fitness trainer and began working with clients. I knew what I was doing and did it well, but life got in the way and I got involved with college-hopping, and life outside of the gym.

College, food, no exercise, bad relationships and pushed through all the way to 2016. I did lose, though. I lost a lot. Lost relationships. Lost my mom. Lost any level of family. Lost my job. Lost another job. Lost my dad.

Lost a LOT.

And I gained. I gained independence. I gained a beautiful relationship and marriage. I gained an ethereal connection with my parents. I gained an adorable and blessed miracle of a child. I gained my own business. Gained little furbabies, I gained my first book with a wonderful co-author,

and I gained a lot of pounds in the background.

I had no desire to exercise. No desire to care about what I ate. The restaurant world changed in terms of servings. What a plate of food or a glass of pop looks like today is NOT what it looked like when I was growing up. The food industry exposure of what is really in our foods was a sick eye-opener. We need to eat. We are trained to finish our food. We are manipulated to buy quick and easy and conveniently. And we end up as adults just eating what’s out there, selecting whatever out of laziness. Out of convenience. Out of what we thought wasn’t a big deal.

Now, I’m approaching 44, and this food thing IS a big deal to me. I no longer care about the outfit I wear — I care about the outfit of food I’m putting together to fit my body from the inside out.

I need to wear it well.

Took me a decade to add the lbs.

Let’s hope it will take me less than that to wear “me” well.

I surely won’t be buying myself a coconut grater. I barely have the time to write this blog! But I will be sort of taking on the spirit of my mom, investing the time to prepare Earth foods that did my body good back then. She was always right. I hate to have to figure that out this late in the game, but that’s how life goes. Better now than never!

Seven days to go 🙂


Click to see what happens next!

Need to catch up? Here’s the 1st post!



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