Wednesday, March 02, 2011

HAVE YOU EVER LOOKED DIFFERENTLY AT THE WAY YOU ATE?


Warning: Please note that this will be the only post in my entire blog where I will talk about my weight, other people's weight, and my obsession with food.

I'll be the first to admit it, I love food.

I love cooking, I love eating, and I love to try new things. Of course you may know that already, but just in case you're new to visiting this teeny part of the blog world, I'm putting it out there. My love for food is serious.

And you'd be so surprised (not!) to hear that I'd like to lose a few kilos (and I'm not thinking Size 0, in case you're wondering). I know, join the rest of the western world, right?

Four years ago, I lived in a developing country where being thin just meant you weren't affluent and healthy. It was hard work to get fat. No-one I knew thought losing weight was a good thing. But if you put it on, compliments just came flooding your way, "You're nice and fat".

Yes, unheard of here in the first world. Meanwhile, we don't feel completely happy unless we're looking like the starving people in 80% of the rest of this planet.

The world's gone mad, I say.

And I've digressed (I'm off my soapbox now and back to where I was going)...

Well, since my babies were born I've basically forgotten how to eat properly. Because having babies and then breastfeeding really rocked the boat for me. Having a new baby meant I ate more. Firstly, because I was so tired (did you know there's a connection between obesity and tired people?), secondly, because I was madly looking out for that little person totally dependent on me for well, everything, and thirdly, when feeding another human being, I lost perspective.

I was constantly starving and ate like a pig. A year or so later, I stopped breastfeeding, and just kept right on eating that way. It didn't help that I put on 18+ kilos during both pregnancies. I had to change what had become a bad habit, because I didn't need to scoff it down anymore.

You can imagine the outcome. It caught up with me, and the last few months I've slowly gotten my waist back (yet I'd like not to have a muffin top anymore).

For encouragement, I've been reading on the subject matter as much as I can. Recommended by my darling step daughter Kelly, "The Only Diet There Is" written by Sondra Ray has been a good reading experience. It's an old book, and although it's very new agey, I like the sentiments. Think your way to being thinner. Not actually eating what you want and hoping to be thinner, but just realising that you deserve to look and feel fabulous. Her basic theory is this: you affirm yourself, you work out why you don't "get off it" [do anything about losing weight], and you make your meals enjoyable. This includes: thanking God for your meal. Sit at a beautifully laid out table. Think about only good things while eating. Eat slowly. Enjoy every mouthful. Eat only good food.

Fabulous points, I say. And I've been giving this lots of thought (food for thought, perhaps?). But the last few point is where I become unstuck. Although we thank God for every meal before we start, there is nothing relaxing about meal times at our place. Why there's picking up the flying utensils my one year old decides he doesn't need, the bib he takes off umpteen times during a meal or the constant requirements for condiments, drinks, seconds and dessert. Meal times are a matter of stuffing my face when I get the chance and jumping up and down for the rest of the time. I didn't even think about what I was eating. And I tell you, that is not pretty.

Then I had another realisation. I bought the kids' DVD "Ratatouille" (a kids' foodie movie about a rat who likes to cook) for our family movie night. There is a scene where they introduce the rather skinny food critique. While the young Gusto jokes about how skinny he is for someone who likes food, the food critique responds by saying:

"I don't like food, I love food. If I don't love it, I don't eat it."

It's what Sondra has been trying to tell me (yes, I'm on first name basis with the writer of the book). And it's high time I started thinking the same way. Not eating average food. Eating good food. Enjoying it. And not stuffing myself.

This week has been the week where all this wisdom is starting to sink in, and it's finally working. I'm not finishing every morsel and then going for seconds when I don't need it. I'm thinking about what I'm eating, and enjoying it. But then stopping when I've had enough. Also deciding to choose foods that are healthier, tastier, and better for me. If I don't love it, I'm not eating it, just for the sake of it.

It's totally changed the way I think about food.

What about you? What new thing have you  tried this week? Linky up below and share with us what new thing you've tried this week. Whether is be as major as quitting your job for a new career, or a change in your routine or like me, my mindset.

a day in the life of us




16 comments:

  1. Love this post. It sounds as though you're describing a grown-up approach to food. I know you're right, I need to change my approach too, and all the things you mentioned - from the breastfeeding (I'm not one of those lucky women who shed kilos by breastfeeding) - to the eating without thinking because you're just trying to get the kids fed. We eat good food, no junk and takeaway is very rare, but I find it hard to stop when I've 'technically' had enough. Thanks for the food for thought.

    Oh congratulations too! How will you manage your food club? Actually that probably fits into your new thinking - it's celebrating great food, beautifully set table, good company...

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  2. Such a coincidence you're writing about food this week! Chris and one of his mates decided to go on a crazy only-raw-fruit-and-vegetables diet for one week. Raw corn on the cobb anyone??

    So food has been interesting in our house too! I don't think I've ever seen so much fresh fruit and vegies crammed into our fridge. And not going off either - he's too hungry!

    Personally, I much prefer your philosophy. If I don't enjoy it, I won't eat it!

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  3. LOVE THIS POST!!!! Do me a favour and visit this week's post at dropitandeat.blogspot.com
    It's right on topic - and I think you will agree with her perspective on healthy eating :-)
    xxxCate

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  4. I come from a developing country myself. And it is common for people here to say "Hi. You're so fat!" or "Hi, are you pregnant?" to plus-sized women. Weird but they actually mean well. Anyways, lovely insights in this post.

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  5. This post came just at the right time!
    I'm on a weightloss mission and for the last few weeks i have had no motivation.
    thanks for the great post!
    xxx

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  6. Love this post Kym. Definitely 'food for thought!' x

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  7. Kym great post!! I piled on 25+ kgs with each pg and never managed to get back to pre-pg weight after our 4th and 5th so am still carrying an extra 10+kgs...my dilemma now is having high bp which I can manage without meds if I drop the extra weight. My trouble is motivation!!! I just don't have the energy after running around all day, I'm even struggling to get time for myself these days. I really need to make it a priority to eat healthy, instead of shovelling food in my mouth on the go and to get fit for my health.
    I don't believe in giving up food I enjoy...it's all about balance for me :) I think I will try some of your suggestions and see how I go.
    Xx

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  8. I've changed my attitude to food, too, a while ago. Because children eat only a little bit some times and a lot other times, it's hard to know how much to cook, so I was constantly cooking too much and finishing the leftovers, until one day I'd had enough. Now I'll eat if I want to, but not just so that food doesn't go to waste...

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  9. hello!
    you've got me thinking...
    I tought my girls a few things on the piano - that was new - I guess.
    xx

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  10. hmm yes me trying to do this too. I did good today and cut down portion sizes.

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  11. Oh my sweet sweet friend, how did you know how much I would need to read this? I have a small group of ladies I chat with pretty regularly about all of these things. We're there to help each other and lean on each other and just get each other through this spot we've all settled in. I've been looking for a book for us to read together and my dear, I think you just found it for us. Big hugs!

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  12. Love this post! I thought you must have been a fly on my wall:
    Meal times are a matter of stuffing my face when I get the chance and jumping up and down for the rest of the time.
    It drives me insane how the kids always want things as SOON AS I sit down to dinner, no matter how prepared I am before offering drinks/condiments/serviette. So now I am saying no, I will help them after I have eaten my dinner, and I am trying not to stuff it in my face so quickly.
    Good luck with your new food attitude, you are on the right track, I am sure :)

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  13. Brilliant post! Thank you for sharing this.
    Having had three children in three and a half years and being a binge/emotional eater from way back with PND I am sure I don't need to elaborate exactly how much I needed to read this!
    I am so motivated by this post.

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  14. Can i just say - I LOVE this post. Secondly - Are you in my head??? hmmmm i think you are because it freaks me out when i read what you are thinking as i am thinking so much the same thoughts and have experiences so similar to you about food, pregnancies, weight, body image and my relationship to food. Not only that - my kids love Ratatouille - it's the only dvd i've bought them in the past 2 years (they don't watch much tv) but i totally agree with that point about loving food. I know i love food. i'm from a european family - you must love food. and like you said, your only skinny and waif like if you are poor. I too don't desire to be stick thin and i would love to get rid of the muffin top that came about after two huge pregnancies that saw me gain 20+ kilos each time!!! I've been trying really hard to take care of myself, nurture my body, allow time for exercise and really learning to choose good food.
    Good luck on your journey and congratulations to putting it out there!!
    ps- just for the reckon, i think your pretty damn fine! xx

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  15. i meant for the record - not reckon!

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  16. this was so beautiful and peaceful and made me happy for you.
    Wedding Dresses
    This site is a can refer to the choice of browser may help you see
    Welcome back. Wonderful photos, wonderful story. So glad you could be there.

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Thank you for your thoughtful and positive words and taking the time to comment. Love Kymmie. xx