Depressing Food

So my friend J is studying to be a nutritionist. I know she'll be fantastic at anything she decides to pursue (she's just one of those people), so I know she'll make a great nutritionist. We've talked before, briefly, of her analyzing my diet and coming up with some helpful tips for me, and just the other day she asked me to be a guinea pig for her and keep a food journal for a few days. I agreed in good humor. After all, my friends all agree that I eat pretty healthy, so what do I have to hide?

I'll be the first to admit that I do have an odd diet, and not particularly varied. There are a few factors to this. First, I am constrained by my food allergies, and there's not much in the regular stores for me outside of fresh produce. Secondly, money is an issue, as I can't afford to be buying all that specialty stuff, and we really can't afford anything outside of basic staples at this point in time. Thirdly, there's the energy factor: I have all these grand ideas for dishes to make using the ingredients on hand (I used to love creating meals for the S family and myself, and I miss that), but I don't have the verve to put those ideas into action. Do you realize how much energy cooking takes? The standing for that length of time alone is prohibitive. Fourth and foremostly, there's the nausea factor. Many times I know it's time to eat, or I'm hungry only briefly, but the nausea kicks in and the idea of food is just not appetizing at all... much less cooking, immersing myself in food preparation. Yuck. Oh yeah, I also forgot about my finnicky gut. I can't digest a lot of things very well, so I stick to simple, easily digestible foods like fruits, grains, and some veggies. Protein makes semi-frequent, small appearances. I've learned the hard way what happens if I eat too much protein in a day... which means that I can usually have a solid protein only once a day, twice max. I don't even bother with nuts anymore, unless it's cashew butter (which I can't buy for love or money in my town anymore anyway).

So with all that, it's a wonder I eat at all, I'd say. I do try to make sure that I eat well, as well as I can. But lately... I've still been wrestling with depression. It's not bad, just enough to be annoying, you know? Kinda like a toothache. It's not harming you, but it colors the edges of your day and kinda makes everything a little more annoying. And with that depression comes apathy, which means I really don't care about a balanced diet right now. In addition, I'm more prone to eating junk food. I'm craving it much more often, and, what's more important, indulging it more often.

Keeping track of my eating habits opened my eyes to just how much junky food I've been eating lately, and I found myself swamped with guilt. I couldn't believe it, but I really felt really bad about... well... my failure. Yes. I had failed. I wasn't eating well, and now there was proof. The thing about falling short of my ideals for myself is that I then, in my head, become a bad person. The Should Monster comes out to play and I beat myself up. It's terrible. It's awful. It's regular as clockwork.

So I gave in and junked it up yesterday. I mean, if I'm already screwing up, why not go for the gold, right? I even had pizza. (For reference, I'm allergic to at least one thing in every single component of pizza.) I've been cheating quite a bit lately... which, of course, makes me feel even worse about myself.

But no! I will not allow myself to abuse me. So I've seen that my eating habits could be better. Now I take this new day and try to do better. That's it. It's that simple. I'm not a horrible person because I had a soda the other day. I'm not somehow bad and undesirable because I ate a cookie. How can I even think that these choices constitute a moral failing somehow? I'm nuts, man. There's still a bunch of stuff to hammer out in my head, but I'm making progress... a little bit at a time.

2 thoughts:

  • Julie Rose | September 12, 2013 at 3:44 PM

    Have I mentioned recently that I love you? =) Not just because you speak highly of me in your blog ;) But because you inspire me to continue in learning to be kind to myself, the way I would be kind to you, or how you would be kind to me. You're not a bad person because you made poor eating choices, and nor am I a bad person because I slept in and didn't accomplish all I planned to. (I may have to work harder now to make it up, but I don't need to feel guilty and beat myself up.)

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