Monday, May 12, 2014: How do you balance good nutrition and good taste?
This seems like a silly prompt to me, but let's go with it. Personally, I don't think that good nutrition and good taste necessarily need to be "balanced" because one should be able to have both in a meal. However, I do recognize that some foods are more nutritionally deficient than others and that one probably should indulge every craving that comes along. There are a few things that hubby and I do to keep our diet in check.
Don't keep temptation foods in the house.
Since hubby and I rarely eat out, the best way to stick to a healthy eating plan is by not letting junk food in the house. In December, hubby and I decided to try out the paleo diet that basically cuts out all processed food. We can eat anything that a caveman (or woman) would have access to so all-purpose flour, white sugar, and pre-made boxed food is out. I'm still working on reconciling why packaged coconut flour and almond flour is acceptable, but I digress.
The first thing that we did was move all of the non-paleo food to a separate cabinet that I called the "naughty" pantry. All of the super tasty, but terrible for us foods went there. We didn't throw them out, but realized that we were having cravings and acknowledged the lifestyle that we were (and still are) trying to cultivate. We aren't perfect paleo eaters, but we're happy with the progress we've made towards a healthier diet.
Keep tasty snacks prepared and ready to go.
Part of changing our diet was recognizing that we like to snack on carb heavy foods such as tortilla chips with salsa and pita bread with hummus. Since both of these are quick snacks that we could just grab and munch on, the challenge became finding alternatives that satisfied our craving for a snack, but that wouldn't destroy our diet. Now we keep prepped veggies in the fridge with dressing, jerky in the pantry, and the occasional baked good available.
Know when to give in.
Not everyday is going to be a perfect diet day. Once we came to grips with that life in Smith Land was much better. Neither of us wanted to give up the occasional alcoholic beverage, so beer and wine are still in house to be enjoyed. I wasn't about to give up my morning coffee with creamer or oatmeal. And let's not talk about our shared love of deep fried veggies and boneless wings. The way we see it, if we're on the right path more often than not then we are good to go.
When we do decide to eat out, we get whatever sounds good off the menu. I don't let my self-imposed restrictions affect other people -- the non-dairy thing is a different story. So, if you're eating at my house don't expect to eat junk food, but I'll eat it if I'm at your house.