I planned on discussing this in a later post, but since I read the article called, “The No Diet Diet”, I have really been dwelling on the earth-shattering ideas that were revealed to me. It’s not like I wasn’t aware of these concepts, but it was just really motivational to see someone being a part of the same battle that I face every day (I say that like its some momentous, life or death thing). When I am interested in something, I always want to know more about it, and in perusing the internet, I stumbled across the book, French Women Don’t Get Fat. The author is a French woman, which is fitting, and in the book, she shares the secrets of how French women manage to stay thin while living in the food capital of the world, or anywhere else for that matter. Cursed French!
Obviously one of the most important things for French women is CONTROL- portion control and self-control. They indulge and eat whatever they want, but all in moderation. The French eat with all 5 senses- sight, taste, smell, sound, feel (in case you’ve had a momentary brain fart and can’t remember all of them)- and savor not just the taste, but the entire experience.
There were tons of other significant principles of the book, but the one that stuck out to me the most was passion. Having a passion for food. I always thought I had this passion. I love food. I love cooking, thinking about, looking at, smelling, tasting, and discovering food. But encumbering my complete, unfettered zeal for cuisine, is that guilty conscience asking, “What is eating this food going to do your figure?” The day after indulging in not-as-healthy-as-I-usually-eat foods is always followed with a strict menu and more strenuous workout than usual to make up for the extra calories I might have packed on.
I want to be able to enjoy both sides of the process- the cooking, preparation, and creation, as well as the enjoyment and pleasure that comes along with eating it- without worrying about how it is negatively affecting my body (within reason obviously). So Wednesday, I wanted to experiment. I decided to drop the calorie counting and make believe that I was French.
Wednesday I was craving a sweet breakfast and a variety of different things. I wanted some sort of bread item, fruit, and a dairy product, and my mind suddenly jumped to calories. That’s going to be high. But, I pushed those diet thoughts away and decided to eat all three things.
I find that I always feel the need to have two of something, like slices of bread or both sides of a bagel, for instance. But today, I fought those feelings and only took half a cinnamon apple bun. I paired it with cottage cheese and an apple. To add just a little naughty to my meal, I put some honey on top of the bun. No measuring.
I sat down at the table instead of in front of the TV or my computer with my breakfast and a cup of coffee. I wanted to savor all of the foods that were before me. I ate slowly and really tasted everything. Low and behold, I could not finish my breakfast (I was tempted to take my temperature)!
Fueled up for the day, I went to Journey’s End to spend time with my furry friends. After being sufficiently covered in dog hair, I came home to eat lunch. In keeping with the French feeling of the day, I made Tarragon Chicken Salad.
Tarragon gives anything a French twist. I had a little scoop of the salad with a pickle. I leisurely ate away, not concerned with the fact that there was mayo and sour cream in this dish. It was delicious.
Later, my mom and I went window shopping. This seems to be our go-to for solving boredom. I came across some interesting apparel.
|I'm sure the French would be appalled.|
For dinner, I made another ethnic meal. I had a glass of wine to add to my ever-so-cultured day.
|Cabernet Merlot blend. Quinoa with tomatoes, cilantro, and southwest seasoning. Butternut Squash.|
Eating dinner without worrying about the calorie count or if I was eating too much, and paying attention to eat luscious mouthful was such a delightful experience. Exactly what I was going for. Now, I am not saying that health should go out the window. On the contrary, I am saying that being healthy should be pleasurable but balanced. Who wants to live their life thinking that every bite is a mouthful of calories? I don’t. I want to stop looking at food simply as nourishment, and start thinking about the experience. Food should be shared, enjoyed, and tasted, smelled, pondered, created, relished, appreciated, and savored. We should always try to take pleasure in the food we are eating. Sometimes, you just have to pretend to be French.