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A positive, tasty NON-DIET approach to healthy eating. Anyone want to join me?

(72 Posts)
fuzzpig Thu 09-May-13 12:37:14

Due to health issues (I have CFS/ME among other things) I have decided that I need to eat more healthily. Not that it's a cure, and I know no food is magic, but I know that having a healthier diet will be one less stress for my body to deal with. I also feel that due to our hectic and exhausting lives we haven't been feeding our DCs as well as we should.

I am not interested in crash diets etc so I decided, rather than banning myself from 'bad' foods, to instead focus on including lots of lovely nutrient rich food to make it a positive experience rather than a chore of self-deprivation. I'm not going to be weighing myself BTW, any weightloss is secondary to me as I really just want to focus on nutrition (also due to my health, heavy exercise is not possible ATM).

Unfortunately due to aforementioned illness cooking is very hard for me so I have to keep it simple and I am only making small gradual changes. So far it is easy as I actually love a lot of these foods, but often didn't prioritise them, instead going for cheaper/more convenience/quick fixes etc.

First off I decided to add berries and nuts, as these are two things that are supposedly rich in nutrients (vitamin C and protein/vitamin E respectively) and I love them - but generally didn't indulge due to price. However I found bags of mixed whole nuts in Tesco and they are going down very well, I put them in an airtight tub and 5yo DD even asks for them when she is hungry for a snack, instead of her previous requests for biscuits/crisps etc! shock We are all enjoying the berries too.

Although I am deliberately not banning myself from junk food, I am already finding I don't crave it quite so much because I am enjoying the berries and nuts and they feel like a treat in themselves. My taste for processed food is decreasing too, and now when I do eat some it often doesn't satisfy me at all and/or makes me feel a bit sick.

Two other things I really want to increase is oily fish (good source of long-chain omega 3) and pulses (protein and fibre). I think this is going to be more difficult as the DCs aren't keen on either (except tuna and, erm, baked beans).

I'm sure I can't be the only person wanting to eat more healthily so would anyone like to join me and share support, ideas and advice? smile

Grockle Sun 12-May-13 09:18:13

My vitamins etc are:

Multivitamin with supplements - pretty much 100% of everything
Cod Liver Oil & Evening primrose oil - for immune system as well as skin etc
Glucosamine - for my joints

TBH, it was a rash, clutching at straws decision but they are supermarket own brand and were on 3 for 2 so I thought I'd give it a go. Nothing to lose other than a bit of cash which I was willing to part with if it helps.

DS is brilliant with veg. He loves peas & we probably have them 5-6 times a week but he'll eat pretty much anything. I'm really lucky. It's me who's the picky eater nowadays. And my studentDD(11) who eats everything until I cook sausages. And pie. And fish. And cheese. And yoghurt...

I felt awful yesterday but spent the day in bed, apart from 2 hours when I went out for afternoon tea but shivered & cried inside the whole time. My mum had to help me change the sheets because I was so sweaty the dog jumped on it with muddy paws. And that made me cry... what sort of 35 yr old can't change her own sheets?

fuzzpig Sun 12-May-13 09:47:22

Thanks grockle I was looking at glucosamine too as my boss who has arthritis swears by it. I don't know if it occurs naturally in anything or if it is synthetic, I will google it later.

It is amazing how some foods are really rich in certain things, for example one brazil nut has RDA of selenium IIRC?

Was also thinking of vits C and D which I have taken in the past although they don't taste nice.

Would it help people if I found a list of what foods are best for each nutrient? I think it would help me as it would encourage me to eat a wider variety.

NeedsTherapy Sun 12-May-13 10:33:21

What do you eat for breakfast? It's something I always skip as most grains make me feel worse and eggs are too difficult.

fuzzpig Sun 12-May-13 12:18:11

I just eat cereal. We are all cereal mad in this house and it would be very hard to give up!

An alternative could be fruit/nuts/seeds with yoghurt?

One of my favourites is fruit corner yoghurt with chopped banana (and a cereal called 'grape nuts' sprinkled over).

I wouldn't really cook eggs for an everyday breakfast either although poached eggs aren't too much hassle if you get poaching pods (little silicone cups that float in the water)

If you boiled eggs the day before would you eat them cold?

Or maybe a smoothie if you have a blender - could add milk or yoghurt and even linseed I think?

Grockle Sun 12-May-13 14:05:10

I skip too or eat cereal or toast. If I eat in the morning, it makes me ravenous all day & I eat constantly. If I don't have breakfast, I can manage til teatime, then have a sensible dinner & nothing more.

fuzzpig Sun 12-May-13 14:07:47

These links are the best I've found so far:

vitamins in food

minerals in food

fuzzpig Sun 12-May-13 14:09:06

Grockle I hate to think of you not eating for virtually the whole day! Even if you aren't hungry it can't be good surely? x

Grockle Sun 12-May-13 14:17:19

No, it can't be good. But better than eating crap all day and becoming the size of a house? Maybe... I'm not very good at eating sensibly & suffer greatly with disordered eating.

Thanks for the links.

NeedsTherapy Sun 12-May-13 18:54:43

Grockle I'm the same. I need to sort out my eating habits before my girls start picking up on it sad I'd hate for them to have the same food issues I do.

I hadn't thought about yogurt! For some reason I just have a total mind blank when it comes to food.

Dh is already gluten free so I have decided from next Saturday (because I shop on a Friday!) we are a full gluten free house hold.

Grockle Sun 12-May-13 21:20:04

I know... DS is very aware of my crap eating. I think I got my problems from my mum. I was determined not to pass them on sad Thankfully DS seems to be ok so far. I MUST sort it out. I'm hungry now.

awaywego1 Mon 13-May-13 17:56:36

Sorry haven't read the whole thread but just wanted to say I am an me/cfs person who have up gluten about 6 months ago-it wasn't the miracle cure I was hoping for nothing ever is is it! but it has completely got rid of neuropathic burning type pains that I had all the time and eased ibs type symptoms, no massive improvement on fatigue which is a damn shame but am happy with the above and have found it remarkably manageable-tho obviously I would love a pastry right now grin

Grockle Tue 14-May-13 19:36:20

Right, I'm about to do an online shop... any suggestions for healthy things I could add? Today I have eaten 2 KitKat chunkys (someone gave them to me. I don't even like them), crisps, small piece of cake, plain yoghurt with raspberries & blue berries, toast (white), cereal (all bran type stuff)... utter shit sad

buildingmycorestrength Tue 14-May-13 19:41:07

Nuts? Dessicated coconut? Eggs? Satsumas? Salmon? Salad bags? Three bean salad in a tin? Ready cooked lentils? Mozzarella pearls?

looseleaf Tue 14-May-13 20:02:58

Am so glad to find this thread as most diet related threads upset me as I never agree with them (am interested in nutrition rather than dieting).

We have homemade baked beans- soften onion and cook with butterbeans and tinned tomatoes, seasoning/ herbs etc. tastes way nicer than normal baked beans IMO.

Dahl- great made with a bit of chorizo or bacon for flavour. We often have it with home-fried poppodums (as I avoid sunflower oil).

Try to fry in coconut oil ideally, or mild olive oil, or butter due to smoke points as many oils become quite toxic at high heats.

I love a Persian salad we discovered with finely chopped tomatoes, cucumber, parsley and a squeeze of lemon and some olive oil.

Spanish tortilla - delicious and worth making a large one as so useful cold for a quick lunch.

I often make pancakes for breakfast with GF flour, egg and coconut milk.

Incidentally I thought I had ME for ages and it was awful so am so sorry you are finding it hard. Mine lifted in an amazing way when I discovered DD strongly intolerant to wheat as led me to realise I was too. A few breadcrumbs knock me out and affect me for several days.

looseleaf Tue 14-May-13 20:04:44

Oops I left out onion from Persian salad- think that's what makes it do yummy!

Seeds are great too as packed full of magnesium etc. I found some dark choc covered ginger ones I love!

Wossname Tue 14-May-13 20:05:06

How about oily fish? smoked mackeral is lovely and very healthy I think. Nuts and seeds, full fat yogurt, eggs, chicken breast, feta cheese, salad, veg for roasting, sun dried tomatoes, olives.

This is all stuff that I am going to get this week, I am sick of eating crap.

Grockle Tue 14-May-13 20:21:11

How do I begin with GF?

Is it easier to buy GF alternatives (e.g. bread, cereal etc) or just to avoid wheat-based things...

awaywego1 Tue 14-May-13 22:25:34

It's probably easier to start by avoiding all together otherwise you spend a fortune on crap sugar filled food. I buy gf porridge oats and have them every morning, salad and a yogurt for lunch and then stir fry/jkt potato/soup/stew etc for dinner - I do buy gf bread and pasta occasionally-but try not to have it too much. It's easy to get sucked into the replacement snack isle but they are as high in fat and sugar as standard biscuits etc. I do eat a lot of chocolate tho grin

fuzzpig Tue 14-May-13 22:42:26

Hello looseleaf, mind if I ask what in particular annoys you about normal 'diet' threads? I really feel that nutrition is a huge minefield, we get so much conflicting info, which is one reason I am just focussing on including good, nutrient-rich food rather than worrying about dieting as such, although on the whole I am reducing processed food in favour of natural whole foods.

So what exciting yumminess did you get in your order grockle? Please stop beating yourself up for eating 'crap', you don't need guilt on top of the illness! Just concentrating on adding even one good thing each day will help (I found if I tried to do too much at once it got a bit overwhelming and food got wasted). Could you get DS involved in trying new things?

Good news, DD loves the seeds too and will happily grab a handful. Have to admit I don't like them as much as nuts but they are good for having something nibbly/crunchy.

Anyone else love avocado? I keep forgetting to just use them as an extra veg with dinner, which is daft as 3 of us would quite happily eat slices of it. It's so lovely.

I'm awake after a nap and am going to have papaya and strawberries smile

fuzzpig Tue 14-May-13 22:45:02

away do you manage oats then if they are uncontaminated? That's really good (flapjacks! grin) - oats are a grey area for coeliacs but DH tried some GF oats and still got awful symptoms - he was really disappointed.

buildingmycorestrength Tue 14-May-13 23:02:31

I find I'm gravitating more and more to salmon, avocado, sweet potato, salad, eggs, berries, natural yoghurt. Not bored at all of these and have them most days (not salmon most days, actually). No controversy about those foods.

Although I did binge on biscuits today..I think I get cravings when I'm ovulating as well as before my period. Thanks, biology! Double the fun!

howiwonder Tue 14-May-13 23:20:23

Marking my place on this thread. I had a good talking to from the HV about nutrition and looking after myself a few weeks ago (after I confessed about my appalling dietblush) and I really upped my intake of yummy whole foods as a result. Lots of nuts and seeds and cut down in caffeine and upped water- felt loads better really quickly.
Unfortunately the bad habits are starting to creep back in, and the good food is slowly falling by the wayside again.
Hopefully this thread might provide a bit of a kick up the bum, my DM always says 'eat rubbish, feel rubbish' and its so bloody true!

fuzzpig Tue 14-May-13 23:26:24

I get cycle-related cravings too. I am starting to be more selective with the junk food I do eat though - for instance I'd rather have one amazing slice of cake than several crappy cheap ones.

Welcome howi - what kind of food do you like? smile

howiwonder Tue 14-May-13 23:37:05

I'm not a huge meat or fish eater. Love cheese, most green veggies- love most veggies in fact. I have to say I also love carbs though, and can't imagine life without bread. Also have quite the sweet tooth

Grockle Wed 15-May-13 08:10:07

Right, day 1. I've had no breakfast but had some milk & blueberries.

I'm taking a pot of nuts to work for lunch - I used to do that & a handful of nuts & seeds would fill me up much more that a bag of crisps or sandwich. I seem to have a dodgy tummy today (maybe its complaining about yesterday's diet).

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