Monday, February 04, 2013

'Healthy' Food

You will never believe what I am about to tell you (considering the fact that I love raw, bloody steaks), so brace yourself...
Once upon a time, in a past life, far, far away, I was a vegetarian. To be precise, from my early teens up until the time Kirstie was about six months old. My vegetarianism started out in a rather unhealthy way: lots of processed foods, way too little protein and definitely way too little taste. I still remember barbecuing tofu (plain, tasteless, spongy tofu) with best friend Lavinia. Well, at least the barbecue sauce helped. The only thing that I could make decently was vegetarian chili- a recipe from my friend Stacy back in high school.
As the years progressed, I got a bit smarter (a very small bit though) by adding more fresh foods to my diet and cutting out most of the processed crap. Still, my meals weren't anything to write home about. I was a big fan of those fake meat replacements and in all honesty, I really don't think they're that good for you.
I won't bore you with the details, but after my pregnancy, I became ill. Really ill. So much that I remember one time when I was standing at the top of the stairs, baby on my arm, and felt like I was going to faint. I quickly put her back in the crib, threw myself on the bed and decided that something had to change. I had enough with the iron pills, enough with the blood tests every six weeks and enough with seeing food as a possible enemy. At that point, I decided I was going to eat everything and that I was going to eat with pleasure. I still remember my first non-vegetarian meal: a piece of mackrel with some bread. Hans was also a vegetarian, but at that moment, he followed in my footsteps and we both became omnivores.
Now don't get me wrong, my illness had nothing to do with the fact that I was a vegetarian. I am still a big fan of eating meatless meals and my meat is only good, organic meat. My illness was caused by bad food choices. Cleaning up my act didn't happen from one day to the next though. It was a slow process which involved learning to enjoy food again. And boy am I glad I stuck through, because somewhere along the way, I totally fell in love with food! Plus, within a year I was off medication and away from hospitals.
Today, there's nothing I won't eat: from offal to vegan. And I don't think I need to tell you how much I love my food. There are many types of 'healthy' when it comes to food, but the most important 'healthy', is the relationship you have with it.
With that, I leave you with this fantastic vegan apple cake- a recipe from one of my favorite blogs: Fat Free Vegan Kitchen which can be found here: Applesauce Ginger Cake with Maple Glaze.


At Anna's kitchen table said...

, but the most important 'healthy', is the relationship you have with it...... That is SO true!

Paola said...

I really do believe that, Anna. :) I just finished writing an article yesterday titled 'The War on Bread' (well, carbs, actually). In the 90s it was fat, now carbs are the enemy. How about just some simple common sense? With adequate exercise and pleasure in what we eat, we'll all be strong and healthy! :)