I started my first attempt at clean eating on Monday, with the mindset that I could do anything for two weeks, and that I wasn’t going to nix all sweets. It’s the holidays, and I knew it would make me crazy if I swore of everything that tasted good in favor of everything that tasted like cardboard.
Since I skimped on the kale but still had some frozen spinach leftover from the summer, the kale-banana smoothie turned into a spinach-banana smoothie for breakfast. It was not disgusting. The almond butter and vanilla helped, to be sure. The next morning’s breakfast was also tasty–blueberry overnight oats–but it was a lot of food to consume in one sitting.
See, I’m a grazer. When school’s in session, I eat cottage cheese at 7 a.m., fruit during my 1st hour class which ends at 8:37, then some Kashi cereal sometime between 9:30 and 11. So sitting and eating those overnight oats was definitely a mountain to climb.
Lunches were surprising–the vinaigrettes in the challenge are quite tasty. And again, the quantities were huge. The taste and size of the meals has made me realize that I am not seasoning my meals properly, and I’m probably not eating enough during the day. Luckily, these are easy fixes that with the right recipes, can be integrated into daily life.
Dinners have been a bit tougher. I’m never quite sure what might trigger an IBS episode, and exotic foods like kale and chia seeds and quinoa and bone-in chicken make me nervous. So I hedged my bets a little and swapped out the quinoa for jasmine rice. I’m sure to some clean eaters, I might as well have eaten a bowl of M&Ms for dinner, but rice is a go-to when I have tummy troubles, so they can go make a batch of quinoa and feel all superior. In the meantime, I will feel just fine.
So far, I’ve been pleasantly surprised with everything I’ve eaten. Some of the meals will make it into heavy rotation when school starts again. I’m not sure what to do with the chia seeds though. In the blueberry oats, they were barely noticeable. When I made a mango smoothie yesterday, though, half of the seeds clung to the sides of my blender. What is the point of spending so much money on a product that won’t even pour into a glass? I will not be blending chia seeds in the future–I’ll just add them in and stir after a smoothie is made.
So even though I haven’t been 100% dedicated (yes, I had fudge, yes, I had cookies, yes, I even had Oreo truffles), this has been good for me so far, to explore what other options are out there to fuel my body.
And now, it’s time for me to go make a blueberry chickpea salad.