Thursday, June 13, 2013

Restored to Health: The First Steps...

“We should not judge people by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled from the point where they started.”
― Henry Ward Beecher
In the past I've jokingly said "I live off of wine, coffee, and carbs". But it wasn't really a joke. For most of my twenties, wine, coffee, and desserts have been a part of daily life. I have passionately loved those three things. Yes, loved. I saw nothing wrong with a dinner of half a bottle of wine, a bowl of pita chips, and a scoop of hummus.
Sangria with Skittles - how could I say "no"?
And that's the thing about food: we form emotional attachments to it. So, while it's true that I enjoy the tastes of those foods, it's really much more than that. Yes, I enjoy the physiological effects - the perk of energy coffee brings, the blissful relaxation that washes over my mind after a glass or two of  wine, and the comforting sugary-ness of desserts and baked goods. But even that's not completely it.

There's a side to food that I believe is more powerful than taste or physiological affects: the emotional and social connections. When I drink coffee I think about my mom and the coffee mugs she used when I was a small child. I think of countless hours spent in coffee shops when I lived far away from home. When I think of wine, I think of fun evenings with girlfriends and trying out new wine bars. Desserts remind me of countless fun excursions to ice cream shops, Sprinkles cupcakes, and baking cookies in the kitchen.
A scone and iced coffee on a beautiful day = Heaven, to me.
What I'm learning to realize is what I really value are the relationships. It just so happens that those foods are associated with those memories. I also have fond memories of eating watermelon with my grandfather. Healthy foods can just as easily become a part of cherished memories. 

That's what my brain says, but my heart isn't completely in line yet.

And it's not like I'm giving up those things completely! Let's be real. For now, I'm just determined to lessen my consumption of them.

Here's what else I'm up to...
1. Slowly (very slowly) tapering off my acid reflux medication. Right now I'm alternating a pill every other day with 3/4 of a pill every other day. I've learned how to use a pill cutter!
2. Only one cup of coffee per day, with coconut milk.
3. No fried foods, no highly processed carbs or bread of any kind. Semi-gluten free.
4. Wine only on the weekends.
5. Supplements everyday.
6. At least 7 hours of sleep per night (this has been hard since my class started).
7. At least one salad per day. And an overall increase in fresh fruits, veggies, and nuts.

What I'm working on... 
1. Going to bed earlier.
2. Exercising more consistently (very difficult while it's both hot and I need to study)
3. Limiting my refined sugar and dairy intake.
4. Meditation.

No comments: