Hissy Fit - October 2018

Trick or Treat: I'm Confused


My eating habits have changed for what I consider the better, but others would probably consider the worse. Recently, I looked in my fridge and realized how much has changed. Let’s take inventory: almond milk, pine nut hummus, strawberries, blueberries, Compari tomatoes, romaine hearts, fresh broccoli, light ranch veggie dip, cage-free eggs, organic natural peanut butter, crumbled bleu cheese, blue cheese dressing and seven gallons of high-alkaline water. Good Lord, no wonder I’m losing weight. If I sat down and ate it all in a day, which is a possibility given the right day, it would barely add up to the caloric intake of a ribeye, loaded twice-baked potato, buttery garlic bread and red wine dinner. For goodness sake, I’ve eaten more than this in one sitting—hello biscuits covered with sausage gravy.

Here’s the thing, though: I actually like the food filling my fridge, and eating it has changed my body immensely, both inside and out. I am working my way down the scale, my blood sugar is lower, my energy level is higher, and I am no longer lethargic, or brain-impaired from sugar overload. I don’t think about taking an afternoon nap anymore. In fact, I don’t even yawn when that hazy, bewitching hour after lunch rolls in like a warm afternoon drizzle. In essence, I am finally eating the food my body deserves—foods my doctor told me to eat years ago—except kale—and my body is happy.
I didn’t always think (or behave) this way—hence my years of being overweight. It wasn’t until recently, when I had a conversation with someone who was planning to start a diet…on Monday… that I realized the extent of the warped way we sometimes think, which by the way, is exactly the way I used to think and still could relapse.

She told me she was having a huge cheeseburger and a mound of chili cheese fries for supper. I made mention (not in a preachy way, of course, because I wanted to join her) that instead of having a specific start date, she might want to consider simply trying to eat better whenever she can.
It all adds up. And then she said IT—the part that hit me like a ton of bricks. “No way. I’m eating everything I can between now and then. I deserve it!” That. Word. Deserve. Exactly what is our perception of what we are deserving of?

In reality, we really deserve health-filled foods that nourish our bodies. But, in actuality, most of us focus on what tastes delicious and comforts our emotions. I get it. I’ve been there; done that; and will probably do it again.

For years, I thought I deserved to treat myself in the form of dessert…everyday, all while my body revolted, screaming with escalating blood sugar levels that threatened full-blown diabetes (I don’t want to go blind), and high-cholesterol and triglycerides, which keep whispering in my ear: heart attack, stroke, heart attack, stroke.

To dig deeper in to the theory of treat management, the question remains: If you eat something everyday does it remain a treat, which is defined as an especially unexpected source of joy or delight; an entertainment given without expense to those invited?

Well, no. It doesn’t. It’s not unexpected, it’s a habit, and it definitely doesn’t come without expense. In fact, there is a very high price to pay—like weighing over 200 pounds, like shopping in the plus-size section where no cool clothes exist, like being over-looked for being ugly and/or dumb on a fairly regular basis. Not to mention the stuff you can’t see, so much as you can feel, like the slow, internal disintegration of your health and quality of life, which is truly life’s biggest freedom!

I’m right there with you sister friend; I love food. I have since I was a child. I use it for comfort, especially growing up in a Southern household where fried chicken, rice and gravy, and oil-laden, cooked-to-death vegetables were not only the way of life, but also the language of love. However, I finally realized this love language is a wolf in sheep’s clothing—not loving at all. Instead, it is destructive and dangerous.

I have chosen to redefine what love and deserve and treat mean to me, and how they can work in my life when it comes to food. No more tricks. My goal: Employ them on my terms.
What an ah-ha moment—an unexpected source of joy or delight. Could it be? Why yes…a real treat.