Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Food Dabblings: The No-to-Low Grain Experiment

Remember how I posted a few weeks ago about a few shake-ups I was doing with the food I consume? I like to play around with my diet every so often. These experiments don't necessarily last long, but they almost always teach me something new about how my body reacts to food. Re-examining my diet almost always reminds me why eating nutrient-rich, real food is so important.

Most recently, I decided to cut back on my consumption of carbs, specifically, those found in grains, white potatoes, white rice, etc. etc. I had come to the realization that I had no idea how to feed myself and the Husband without focusing on one of these fillers.

Anniversary rack of lamb.

I made it a week. So short, I know! And then, convenience weaseled a little pad Thai onto my dinner plate and it was downhill from there.

No, downhill isn't quite the right word. It turns out, that week was just enough time to re-adjust something very crucial in my diet. I learned to eat less.

It was weird. In the past, I've never fully experienced such a dramatic difference in how I felt and how I ate after the experiment. During this particular experiment, I ate as much as I want, focusing my consumption on meat, beans, and ginormous salads*. I tracked what I was eating to make sure I was getting enough calories, and adjusted as I went along.

Curry slaw

And then, the new pho place down the street officially opened its doors. I ordered the pad Thai. I couldn't finish it. I could hardly eat half. A fluke, I thought, as I forced myself to at least eat all the shrimp. But, a few days later, I whipped up a batch of spaghetti, falling again for the convenience of pasta. I was stuffed after half my usual amount.

Where I can, I've still be leaving out the grains, or at least focusing on fewer grains. More and more, I'm noticing I need less to be satisfied for longer. Is this a legitimate benefit of cutting out all that filler? Or is it merely head games? I have no idea, but I'll take it.

* The fact that I don't actually love salad that much was probably the downfall of this experiment. I got bored. Fast.

4 comments:

  1. Carbs and grains can be really heavy, so it's possible that after eating other foods (and having to eat more to be full) it did a kind of "reset" for your appetite— feeling fuller on less carbs—kind of like how a stomach can "shrink" after a period of illness. Either way kudos for trying to balance your nutrient intake, not everyone has the willpower to even try for a day ;)

    I wouldn't have been able to resist Pad Thai either. There is something about spicy shrimp&noodles I just can't say no to.

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  2. N_StyleingwithChildrenJune 26, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    don't be so hard on yourself for "giving in". Nothing wrong with eating grains now and than. Even thought I claim to be low gluten, I still eat some.


    I'm kinda overly happy that you've had such a positive reaction in such a short period of time. It's GREAT to hear positive stories. A lot of stories out there are about how hard change is. SO, thank you so much for writing about your experience :)


    Hope you're not too hard on yourself about the "fillers". The more guilt you put on yourself, the more you'll feel crappy about food. And food is supposed to make us feel GOOD. Just focus on all the positive you're already doing.


    Ok, i'm done now :) but seriously, glad to hear you've had a positive experience and keep on enjoying food.

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  3. I will be the first to admit that sometimes, food and I have a love-guilt relationship. But, because I've been able to come away from the week of low-grain consumption without falling in the complete opposite direction (grains all the time!) I think this experience has actually helped my relationship to food. So, no, I haven't been too hard on myself about falling off the wagon. I accomplished exactly what I wanted to with this! Remind myself that I don't need to have grains and heavy carbs at every meal, refocus on nutrition, and feel good about the foods I choose to eat.


    Thanks! :)

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  4. It's hard to change for every single meal, especially if you're not fond of salads. We are currently eating 2-3 low carb meals each week. I love potatoes too much to give them up. And... as the primary cook, I have the most say in what's for dinner.

    Also, my aunt made an amazing spinach, strawberry and mushroom salad with vinaigrette at our last potluck. It was amazing. You should try that combination if you're looking for salads to try!

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