Yes, that’s right: it’s a double-post Thursday! Actually, this post and the one below started life as one REALLY LONG post, but then . . . they were kind of separate things, after all. But they’re both in my head, so I’m posting them both, and they’re kind of related, so my recommendation is to read them both together. Or not. Because let’s face it: if you don’t, I’m not gonna know! LOL
So. I’ve been eating fewer (refined) carbohydrates in an effort to balance my blood sugar. And it’s been working pretty well, which is SO neat. It’s nice not to be exhausted all the time – who knew? LOL. Last night I went hiking with a friend of mine and then afterward we went to this KICKASS macrobiotic restaurant downtown for dinner. Without thinking I ordered my favorite thing on the menu: seared tuna with avocado, sprouts and pickled onions on a whole wheat bun. My friend also got some baked fries for us to split. After I placed my order and paid I thought, “Oh, crap. I’m not supposed to be eating bread.” And then I thought, “This is EXACTLY the kind of thinking you need to knock off! You’re not ‘dieting!’ You only go hiking once a week, and you missed last week, so a freakin’ hamburger bun and a few fries once a week (at the most) aren’t going to kill you. DO NOT get neurotic about this!” So I enjoyed my “burger” and as many fries as I wanted (which always turns out to be fewer than I would have eaten if I thought of them as “bad” foods, interestingly enough).
By the time I got home to my apartment, I had a KILLER stomachache. The kind with the sharp, stabbing pain in your lower stomach? Anyone? Just me? Oooooookay, then. I took some (more) enzymes and waited for the pain to subside enough to fall asleep. And this morning when I woke up, I just couldn’t bring myself to eat eggs. I still felt a little sick, and (ironically) I wanted BREAD.
Now here’s the thing I run into with Intuitive Eating: I really do believe that nine times out of ten, my body KNOWS what it needs. If I wander around the farmer’s market and think, “Oo, fennel looks good!” then I buy fennel because I figure there’s probably a nutrient in there I need that day. If I feel like I really want some peanut butter, I just eat it. And so forth. But this morning I got up and wanted bread like WHOA. And I KNOW it will make me sick again – that has been borne out again and again in my experience. So why do I want something that I KNOW will make me sick? (I know, I know: brain chemicals are the answer.) And it wasn’t like an inner 7-year-old that WANTS IT WANTS IT WANTS IT!!! *insert foot stamping here* It was the same sort of want that I get for certain vegetables or certain meat sometimes. So now what? How do I reconcile the IE with the knowlege that sometimes stuff like that makes me sick? (As it turned out, I had a glass of milk and a couple spoonfuls of hazelnut butter for breakfast: no refined carbs, but enough fat and carbs to settle my stomach and some protein to “stick to my ribs.” It was, interestingly, the only thing other than BREAD that sounded even remotely good to eat.)
Actually, maybe I just answered my own question above: “It was, interestingly, the only thing other than BREAD that sounded even remotely good to eat.” Maybe the answer with the IE is to say, “Ok, I know that [x] food will make me sick, so even if I want it, I’m not going to eat it. So the next question is, what ELSE sounds good?” And then eat whatever else sounds good. Even if it’s just milk and hazelnut butter. (Can I just say that I had an elementary school flashback this morning while I ate that? A big ol’ glass of milk and a spoonful of nut butter. I felt like I was 8 years old, LOL.)
*Edited to add: my system is TOTALLY screwed from that bread. I had a pretty small breakfast, and it’s almost 11:30 in the morning and food STILL sounds gross. Wow.