There is a diet for everything.
As dorky as this sounds, for the longest time I had on my "to-do" list to research alkaline eating. What's that? Basically, science indicates that chronic disease flourishes in an acid environment, and a large percentage of what makes up the Western diet — sugar, soda, white bread, etc — is acidic. Alkaline foods are the foods you'd already typically associate with being good for you — primarily, vegetables. There are some great pins with acid and alkaline food charts, I love the look of Eating the Alkaline Way on Amazon and I purchased the FoodPh app, which has a great search feature, but aside from that I feel like there's a HUGE learning curve — of all the foods in the world, which ones are acidic? which ones are alkalizing? — I was surprised to read that you CAN eat acidic foods, they should just be eaten in a ratio of 1 acid-promoting food to 2 alkalizing foods, which sounds complicated.
As I sat down to draft this week's meal plan, I was immediately discouraged. A lot of the alkaline recipes involved lots and lots of chopping...sauces on the side, probably to make the food more palatable...weird ingredients...various steps...
I stared at the pictures on screen, and I realized: I don't have time for that! Plus, my husband and kids wouldn't eat any of it, so I'd basically be cooking two different dinners every night. NOT going to happen! I like vegetables, yes — but ones that are easy to prepare, like roasted sweet potatoes and raw salads. We eat chicken once a week, and I'll have a little bit — as long as there's something delicious on the side. On the other days, my family is most happy eating what THEY like — grilled steak, Italian sausage, tacos, pork chops — not some strange concoction I've cooked up.
THIS is my true food style. I don't like a lot of chopping, prepping, dirtying too many dishes or sauteing something that will splatter oil all over my kitchen. I like cooked grains, I like eggs, and there are a million and one things you can do with ground turkey in addition to the vegetable sides I always like to have on the table. And you know what? That sounds like a pretty decent diet to me. There will always be another way of eating or another meal plan that is "better" than mine, but right now I think I'm finally embracing my true food style — how and what I like to cook and eat — and it feels great. I'm even throwing out recipes that don't fit the bill for any of us! Here's the resulting meal plan for this week. I love it!
Monday: Taco night (ground turkey, flour tortillas, refried beans, Spanish rice, sour cream, chopped tomatoes, lettuce, limes, hot sauce and shredded cheese)
Tuesday: Grilled pork for the boys; warm green bean and potato salad on the side/for my main course
Wednesday: Grilled chicken and romaine with lemon-pepper yogurt dressing
Thursday: Italian sausage on the grill; wheat berries with grilled squash on the side/for my main course
Friday: Dinner out
Saturday: Steak for the boys; quinoa salad with grilled cherry tomatoes on the side/for my main course
Weekend breakfast: Sauteed spinach with poached eggs
Dessert one night: S'more shake
I just felt an internal sigh of relief. I look forward to eating this kind of food! Why it took me so long to embrace what I like and what truly nourishes my body is beyond me, but speaking it now feels like coming home. My weekday breakfasts still need some help — I know I can do better than coffee with creamer and toast with almond butter — but this is big step for me.
What do YOU really, truly like to cook and eat? What is YOUR true food style? Leave me a note and share in the comments below. I love being inspired to add new recipes to my arsenal!
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Filed under: Meal plan