Jenny + Gwennie = BFF
Just for the record, Gwyneth Paltrow and I have never met. In fact, I’m not even a really big fan of hers. I’ve read her blog/website a few times and thought, “Sure, mega rich, Academy-award winning actress. YOU’VE got problems.” I read this article and thought, “Sounds legit.”
I was reading Self magazine last week and there was an article about good ol’ GP. I wanted to skip it, roll my eyes and keep looking at the latest butt exercise and this season’s nail polish trends.
The images of the food reeled me in. It looked so yummy. And not at all elimination-y as that mommy blogger was saying. It looked like normal food. Sure there were some notable ingredient swap-outs, but overall, I would cook that. So, I read the article. And guess what, y’all? GP, she’s just like you and me. But mostly like me.
GP had a health scare moment — she felt like she was having a stroke. (Me too, back last fall). Found out it was a panic attack brought on my stress. (Me too!) Went to the doctor and discovered that her thyroid was out of whack (same here), she was anemic (borderline), vitamin D deficient (yep), and her liver was congested (my insurance doesn’t cover that, but I’m going to say yes on this one too). She was also tested for food sensitivities and that’s when she discovered that she needed to eliminate certain foods from her diet. More importantly, if she wanted to feel better, she needed to start eating better.
So I grabbed her cookbook at the library this weekend. Read through it all. Her co-author is a chef and tells her story–a tale I can definitely relate to as well. She was an emotional eater, overweight. Changing her diet, changed her life, health and figure.
Ten pages in this book and I am sold. It could be recipes on eating the grass off my front lawn and I’d be all in. These women are me. I have these same issues. I need help.
I am very food savvy. I read labels (and know how to — thanks food packaging job!). I shun HFCS. I eat whole grains. Cook from scratch. Eat dark, leafy veggies. Drink water, water, water. I was a vegetarian for many years. I’ve changed my habits before and lost lots of weight.
I get it. I know what I need to do and how to do it. I don’t need to count carbs or points or fat grams. I know HOW to do it. Doing it…that’s another story entirely. I am an emotional eater. Stress is my biggest catalyst. And I’ve been living in stressville for many, many months.
Not only was the stress getting to me, but eating more bad stuff than good made me feel tired, run down, like I was in a fog. Plus, it made my pants tighter. Not that I wear real pants on a regular basis (stay-at-home mom/freelance writer FTW!), but when I did, I hated them.
So back to the book…
I read cookbooks like it’s my job. I carry home armfuls each week from the library. Never have I ever found a cookbook where I would eat everything inside (except for the King Arthur Flour Cookbook). Or that I could make everything inside and please the entire family.
THIS. This book is my dream cookbook. There isn’t one recipe that I said ew, or the kids will not eat that. Everything sounds yummy and, here’s the kicker, is made from regular ingredients. I didn’t have to buy 12 special flours or spend hundreds on revamping my pantry. These ingredients are basic — whole grains, veggies, olive oil, fish, chicken, lots of herbs and spices. And yes, there’s no dairy or gluten in any of the recipes. But here’s where the mommy blogger was wrong…there’s meat. There’s sweeteners (no refined sugar). There’s eggs (lots of eggs). And there’s a whole chapter devoted to kid’s recipes. Real food that any kid would eat. Just made smarter and cleaner.
Like I said before, I’m all in (and will have to purchase this book soon!).
Step one is the 21 day “detox”. I put detox in quotes because this isn’t like the crazy-ass detoxes you’ve read about where you only get liquids for 7 days, etc. Sure, I will be drinking my greens every morning, but the rest of the day (including snacks!) is filled with yummy food — chicken breast, fish, quinoa, brown rice, green veggies, fruits, beets, almond butter, etc.
Best thing…the kids will be eating detox dinners this week, and it’s all food they love. No cooking separate meals. No turning away dinner. They’ll eat better too.
I’m not all rainbows and puppies about this. I have to give up caffeine. (Which is srs bsnss for me. I LIVE on coffee. I don’t even know if I can write without it.) Also, no chocolate. Bread, cheese, cereal…bye-bye. Popcorn? Not for three weeks. BUT…I hope to feel so much better that in three weeks time, I won’t even miss those things.