Disclaimer: This post is not meant to be an eat-like-me kinda post. My goal is to give you a behind the scenes on intuitive eating, sharing what guides my decision making about food and how that plays out on the plate. I hope that in reading these posts, you see that "healthy" eating can look really different from day to day.
Monday's are my work from home day, a day I leave open to get stuff done for the blog so I can focus on client work and other projects during the week. Plus, it's nice to start my week off with another day of sleeping in a bit - one of those privileges of working for myself!
I started my day off with a whole grain English muffin spread with light cream cheese that I had mixed a sprig of leftover dill into. Normally, I don't purchase light foods, and I'm very anti-low fat cheese, but I usually buy Trader Joe's light whipped cream cheese because it's easier to spread and it's organic (I try to purchase organic animal foods when possible - just a personal choice of mine). It you purchase any low calorie/low fat/low sugar/etc food, I think it's smart to ask yourself why. There's nothing necessarily wrong with "diet" food - it's just food - but it's smart to make sure there isn't restriction driving the decision. For example, I have a client who usually eats a low calorie ice cream. When we dug into it, turns out she generally prefers regular ice cream (who doesn't?), but this brand sells her favorite flavor she can't find in other brands, so that's what she buys. You see, it's the intentions behind the decision that matter more than the decision itself.
I didn't start to get hungry again until 11ish. Since I was just a little hungry and knew I was going to eat lunch fairly soon, I just had a small snack to tide me over - a can of Spindrift and 3/4ths of a Kitchfix bar. It was 3/4's of a bar because the night before I had a bite of one, thinking I wanted a little bit of something sweet after dinner, but after eating a bite realized I actually wanted something sweet and juicy. Sometimes with intuitive eating, you don't know exactly what you want until you try some things. One you start eating something and realize it's not what you want, there's no rule that you have to finish it!
Lunch was leftovers from the night before - capunti pasta cooked in red wine with garlic chicken sausage meatballs and Japanese eggplant from City Roots. Plus lots of parmesan cheese because this is how I feel about parmesan cheese. I used to be really particular about getting whole grain pasta, and I still like to eat whole grain on the regular because I think it tastes really great with hearty tomato sauces, and it's really satisfying. But I also love pasta with fun shapes, and think white pasta tastes better with garlicky-olive oil sauces, so I'm glad I don't feel obsessive about getting whole grain anymore.
I started to feel tired around 3:30ish - sometimes my hunger cues show up as feeing tired more than an emptiness in my stomach, so I knew I needed a snack plus some caffeine. I had a bottle of Garden of Life Cold Pressed Energy (client), which I've been really into lately, especially since coffee doesn't sound all that good to me when it's hot out. Then I topped what was left of my tub of Siggis Touch of Honey skyr with a handful of farmers market blueberries, shredded coconut, and roasted cacao nibs. I've been eating that combo for breakfast overnight oats style lately and it's SO tasty.
My plan for the evening was to cook dinner, go out for a short run, then eat dinner after said run. But work was running a little longer than expected, and I knew I'd need a little bit more energy before running out in the heat. So I munched on a few tortilla chips with guacamole when the hubs opened that up (TJ's, why do you have to call it guilt-free guac? It's literally just extra creamy guacamole made with yogurt). Then I had a few handfuls of cheddar crackers while cooking dinner so I'd have some carb in my system to fuel my run. Apparently that wasn't enough though cause I was feeling rough towards the end, which I just ended up walking. I was really excited to get sweaty, but I think I underestimated how hot it was!
For dinner, I made my sriracha tofu with cauliflower rice. As much as I get annoyed with diet-y veggie swaps, I also really enjoy the taste of cauliflower rice. The small little bits get nice and caramelized and soak up all the garlic and olive oil flavor. That said, I know that using it as a stand-in for carbs is not going to be very satisfying. So anytime I make zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice or lettuce wraps or whatever, I always make sure there's some carbohydrate as part of my meal. For example, I used rice noodles with these Vietnamese tofu lettuce wraps and tossed actual noodles with zucchini noodles in this summer pasta with crispy prosciutto and mozzarella. In this dish, I added edamame into the cauliflower rice to make it more satisfying.
I was craving something a little sweet after dinner, so I split my last square of Raaka's coconut milk chocolate with the hubs. I picked up a bar at Whole Foods because they had pretty packaging, and I really loved it! They have other interesting flavors like yacon root and Thai basil with lemongrass that I want to try. I wasn't satisfied though, so I had a couple squares of birthday cake white chocolate from Trader Joe's. It's really good if you like white chocolate, but I was hoping it would taste more birthday cake like.
If there's one thing I want you to take away from this WIAW, is that it's the intentions matter as much, if not more than the behaviors. Looking back at my day, I ate white pasta and sausage for lunch, followed by cauliflower rice and tofu for dinner. That could be rooted in restriction (i.e. "compensating" for the white pasta by eating cauliflower rice later), but in this case, I was just making one of the dishes I had planned for the week that I really enjoy. It's important to look at your eating behaviors, but it's more important to question the intentions behind your decisions.
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