About six years ago, I was disgusted. And also, scornful.
Since junior high my weight had stayed around 185. I’d fluctuate; from an infrequent low of 160 to my max weight of 227 after The Kid’s birth.
But finally, I made a decision. My weight was creeping back up to 200, and my clothes felt tight and uncomfortable. I was sick and tired of being fat.
This time, I made two changes that made all the difference.
I increased my activity level from nonexistent to light. As I got healthier, I moved more.
And I finally realized that losing weight was just the beginning. I had to keep the weight off once I reached my goal. But I also knew there was no way I could live the rest of my life only eating rice cakes and poached chicken. A life without potato salad and cake was not a life in which I wanted to participate.
My primary strategy would be to limit calories. One meal per day would have a maximum of 300 calories. Then I’d eat a normal dinner with unlimited fresh fruit or veg between meals and a bite of something sweet before bed.
This I could live with.
I had another tactic. I would absolutely not eat flavorless “diet food”. I held “frou-frou” food in complete disdain. Most healthy swaps little resembled the food they were imitating, and not only did they not hit the spot, they had no idea where the spot was, or what to do with the spot if, on the offside chance, the spot was located.
If there’s a healthier option for something, I give it a go. If I’m unable to tell the difference between the more voluptuous version and its healthier variation, I go for healthier.
This diet philosophy worked. It’s been five years now, and my weight stays around 128 pounds. I wished I’d figured it out decades ago.
Last week when Petey and I were in Whole Foods, Demo Specialist Joe DiBario had a table set up and was serving Portobello sliders. For dessert, he’d made a delicious treat that I ended up buying. At home, after I polished it off, I called the store and asked for the recipe.
It’s a creamy blueberry pudding topped with goji berries and cooked dried apples. I could eat a bowl of the apples and goji by themselves. They’d make an awesome topping for all kinds of things, like oatmeal, or pancakes, or even on pork chops.
It becomes pudding by using chia seeds, a food that a few years ago I would have laughed at, not eaten. Chia seeds are insanely good for you and when allowed to sit in a liquid will swell and form into a texture that is quite similar to tapioca pudding.
Team Leader Andrea Mastrobuono, was kind enough to act as a go-between, get the recipe from Joe, and send it to me to include in today’s column.
Blueberry Chia Pudding with Turmeric Apples and Goji Berries
Blueberry chia pudding:
1 cup chia seeds
3 cups apple cider
½ cup crushed blueberries + ¼ cup whole
Zest and juice of ½ lime
½ tablespoon honey
¼ teaspoon allspice
Pinch of salt
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk together. Refrigerate for 3 hours.
1 cups agave syrup
Juice and zest of ½ lime
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon turmeric
1 cup dried apples
In a small saucepan, combine agave, lime, salt and turmeric and bring it to a simmer. Remove from heat and pour over dried apples.
¼ cup goji berries
¼ cup orange juice
Cover Goji berries with OJ and let them sit at room temperature for 15 minutes.
Assemble the dish with your pudding as the base and top it with turmeric apples, and goji berries.
Makes 8-10 servings at around 200 calories each.
This pudding is the kind of thing I want to eat on a rainy day fresh from the shower. Whether you’re watching your weight or not, it’s delicious. But it just happens to be better for you than a handful of Flintstones chew-ables.
Definitely, happily, on the do-bee list.
Thanks for your time.