Guilty or Guiltless?

Howdy peeps! ๐Ÿ˜€

Thank you so much for the amazing response to the Booja Booja giveaway.  They are seriously delicious chocolates and there is still plenty of time to enter.  The giveaway ends next week.  So all the chocolate fiends in the land enter, enter, enter!

Now for a little rewind to some of my eats…

On Monday and Tuesday my eats during the day were more of a snack like affair as I had to work straight through the lunch demonstrating some experiments to the  undergraduates.  This was at a weird time of the day starting from mid morning to mid afternoon on both days.  I started both days well with a green smoothie and oats for breakfast:

I loaded up of the fruit and a Nakd bar before each of my demonstrations as I knew that I would get super hungry.  On both days I got home around 3.30 which was too late for lunch, but I still needed something to tide me over until dinner.  I opted for a Summer Pudding Green Smoothie on both days.

Dinner on Monday was leftover Red Lentil and Root Vegetable Stew that is based on my Pumpkin, Swede and Red Lentil Curry recipe.  I served it on steamed mange tout, brussel sprouts and savoy cabbage.

Followed by two apples and two avocado cups.  I also had two extra apples.

I love these things! ๐Ÿ˜›

Tuesday for dinner I made turkey meat balls with vegetables in a tomato sauce served with corgette “spaghetti.”

This was sprinkled with Engervita, which is a yeast based product that tastes cheesy.  For dessert I had warm Almond and Hazelnut rice milk with frozen berries and a pear.

On Monday I didn’t workout as I was too tired, but this means I can just move the toning workout to Saturday instead.  Tuesday, however was my spinning class, which had doubled in size.  There were at least 18 of us compared to the usual 7 at the 7.30 am class.  This really got my instructor hyped up as she was insistent on “battering our bodies” – her words not mine!  It was torture, but I loved it as per.  I followed this one hour class with 20 minutes on the cross trainer, 10 minutes on the bike and 10 minutes on the step machine.

I managed a little bit of shopping on Tuesday too.  I stepped into Holland and Barrattโ€™s and my local independent health food shop, which is always well stocked with some unique ingredients.

Almond and Hazelnut rice milk x 2, Vanilla rice milk, Chocolate oat milk, Chocolate Brownie Trek Bars x 2, mixed seeds, edamame beans, pear and apricot spread and natural yeast extract.  I wish I had got the Meridian organic one that they had in the independent health food store, but it was buy 1 get one half price in Holland and Barratt so this will do for now.

Health food shopping is my thaaaang! It’s like a hobby.  I go into the health food shops wondering what new and interesting ingredients I can pick up.

Yesterday I was back on form with my eats i.e. three proper meals and a snack.  I thought I would get an early start at uni instead of going to the gym in the morning, just for a lil’ change.  So for breakfast I had a yummy bowl of yoghurt topped oats again.  I love the combination of the warm oats and cold yoghurt. This time I made a Choco Toffee Fudge mixture using one of Yeo Valley’s toffee flavoured yoghurt pots.

I mixed 1/2 cup of oats, 1 1/2 cups of hazelnut and almond rice milk and 1/2 cup of water with 1 tsp of organic cocoa powder, 1 tsp of maca powder.  Toppings were dried cranberries and cashew nuts…yum!

For lunch I feasted on a fab salad using the new vegan pesto that I had picked up the day before and some lychees.

This included mixed leaves, shredded corgette, parsnip and carrots, sweet red peppers, cucumber, seeds and basil tofu.  I stirred through 1 1/2 tbsp of the vegan pesto.  This was so tasty.  I loved the basil overload from the pesto and the tofu and the raw parsnip was delicious too! ๐Ÿ™‚

Afternoon snackage came in the form of Kale and Sundried Tomato Hummus spread on 2 sweet onion ryvita crackers with a soya chai latte (without the coffee).

This hummus is a-maz-ing!  If you have never tried to make your own hummus I highly recommend it.  I’m definitely a convert to making my own and this one from Lolo is oh-so-good! ๐Ÿ™‚

When I finally got to the gym it was so busy, but hadn’t reached queuing for machines stage yet.  This meant the gym was hotter than what I was used to, meaning I was dripping in sweat.   I did 30 minutes on the treadmill, 30 minutes on the cross trainer and 15 minutes on the step machine followed by my usual ab routine.

When I got home I was also in a baking kind of mood.  After watching Baking Made Easy on Monday night I was dying to try out the Dreamlike Shortbread recipe, so I did!

Dinner yesterday was left over Red Lentil and Root Vegetable Stew with steamed broccoli, seeds and Engevita.

I followed this with a chopped apple and some RAWR Zest and Lindt dark chocolate.

I  also ate a slice or two of shortbread to finish off my night.

The significance of the shortbread?  As delicious as it was I felt so guilt afterwards for eating it.  Not at first, but the guilt sure enough reared its ugly head.  Long before I started writing this blog I used to struggle with eating the right amount of food I ate and the amount of calories I consumed.  I used to under eat and try and ignore the hunger pangs as much as possible.  This was until I fainted and later diagnosed with a mild form of hypoglycemia.  After this point I decided to lead a more healthier lifestyle and eat a balanced diet.  My mindset towards food has changed dramatically and I have come to terms with the fact that food is not the enemy. 

No body forced me to eat the shortbread.  I wasnโ€™t mindlessly eating it either.  It was a conscious decision made my me and me alone.  Some of you are probably thinking โ€œwhy all of this fuss over some shortbread?โ€  But its more than that.  It is more about my mentality towards food and fearing that I have slipped back to that dangerous place I dragged myself from a few years back.  I can see your point though as I donโ€™t know whether to laugh or cry at this post.  โ€œNormalโ€ people, who have always had a healthy relationship with food wouldnโ€™t care about a few extra pieces of shortbread.  I thought I wouldnโ€™t care either, but evidently I do. 

I donโ€™t want to go to that place again.  I now enjoy my food, love being creative with food and look forward to eating my food.  All day to day I have been trying to get that healthy mindset back, but I guess that will take some time.  I know I eat healthily and responsibly, but none of this is about that it is about my own relationship with food.  I know one thing- I no longer feel guilty about eating the shortbread, that was yesterday and this is today.  However, I think I may have some old demons to deal with, but at least for now my my conscience is clear.

Do you ever get hit by guilt in relation to food?  How do you deal with this?



Filed under EATS!, Points of interest

12 responses to “Guilty or Guiltless?

  1. Leanne

    Jemma – I know exactly where you’re coming from.

    I think it’s also because your diet is so clean and healthy that one bit of “junk food” thrown into it feels like it’s been tainted in some way.

    I have these issues with food also that have gone on for well over a decade now. It’s easy for people to say “it’s just a piece of shortbread!” but it’s a lot more deep rooted than that and not as easy to get rid of that mindset, especially when it’s been there for a long time. Kinda like giving up a nasty habit like smoking I guess? It’s difficult! (I’m not a smoker but would liken it to that!)

    Good luck in getting rid of your food demons ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Oh my word, this post is full of so much good food! I love it!!!!! I also love going into health food stores and picking up whatever new/weird/cool looking items to try! It’s so much fun and so great to have a brand new thing waiting for you for breakfast the next day or dinner that night:) Seriously, you eat such good foods though I want to come eat your kitchen:)

  3. I saw Baking Made Easy with the shortbread the other night, I must give it a go!

    I do have ‘food guilt’ sometimes too and along with worrying about daft things like work, it is the one thing I want to change about myself! I normally ask my hubby, what do you think about me eating such and such – and he always says the same thing, something along the lines of ‘you silly sausage’ And he’s right ๐Ÿ˜€

  4. This is a great post. I think a lot of people experience trouble like this with food, particularly surrounding weight concerns and guilt about “unhealthy” food. I’m generally ok with eats, but I do sometimes develop an obsessively restrictive attitude towards alcohol. I’ll realise I’ve gone a couple of weeks without touching any, and that I’ve actually consciously avoiding it. Of course, alcohol isn’t nutritionally very sound, or that healthy, but for me, it has a place in my diet. I find that if I’m restricting particularly strictly, it’s a warning sign that I’m getting too obsessive more generally. So I’ll often give in to the odd beer once or twice a week now, just to stop myself thinking about it too much. I’m having one right now actually ๐Ÿ™‚

    Ok, that sounds kinda crazy now that I read it back, but I hope it makes sense.

    And FWIW, even before I got to what you wrote about guilt at the bottom, the shortbread was what I was going to pick up on. 1) it looks amazing, and 2) I love to see occasional treat foods (and I mean genuine treat foods, not dark chocolate!) on healthy living blogs. I think it represents a sound attitude to diet ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. I think that because everything else is so healthy and balanced, that it stands out more. I do sometimes feel guilt and I try hard not to, as I do think I am generally healthy, but it is such a culture nowadays to have “good” and “bad” food, whereas we should be looking at the overall picture and achieveing a healthy balance across all meals and across a week. So you should not feel it, but I can understand exactly why you do. It looks amazing- I recorded baking made easy and am looking forward to watching it at the weekend ๐Ÿ™‚

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  7. i totally know where your coming from and it is hard to just shrug it off.. what i thnk is best is that you have a think aout why you had theshortbread and why you didnt listen to your body.. were you sad? were you bored? were you.. anything?… once you have identified with this its much easier to forgive yourself becuz you can tell urself that next time you feel that you will not turn towards food
    that said.. 2 pieces id def normal!!!

  8. I can relate to the guilt thing but I am getting much better at reasoning with myself about it. I think it usually happens when you strive for too much ‘perfection’ in your diet, which at the end of the day is impossible. Glad your no longer feeling that guilt! Love your health food haul, we are fellow health food shop addicts I think ๐Ÿ˜‰

  9. Louise

    I can completely relate to the guilt, for me it is usually combined with a panic that it will develop into a small ‘binge’. However I also feel it’s good to experience and recognise these feelings, as a step towards eliminating them. It’s can be a bit of a mental battle. Your food always looks amazing and is so inspiring, I’m craving a smoothie now!!

    Alison it’s interesting what you say about alcohol, I am exactly the same but had thought of it as staying healthy rather than restricting. You’ve made me realise that maybe I’m avoiding it in an unhealthy way after all… out of fear more than anything. Thank you.

  10. Delicious looking food in this post, as always ๐Ÿ™‚ Just wanted you to know you’re definitely not alone with the food guilt thing – I often have the feelings/thoughts you described after ‘indulging’ in ‘bad’ foods and it’s something I’m trying hard to work on. Treats, like your shortbread, need to have a place in our diets… it’s part of the enjoyment of food! I suppose we just need to work on improving our mental attitude to it all and achieving that illusive happy balance ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Please don’t feel guilty over some shortbread, ever! I don’t believe that home-baked goods are unhealthy anyway, regardless of ingredients. Truly unhealthy food is mass-processed, nutritionally void crap that has no love or soul in it at all. What you make always looks delicious and prepared with a chef’s eye for care.

    Plus, you eat so lightly most of the time that I’m sure your body enjoyed the ‘treat’ ๐Ÿ™‚


  12. I totally have trouble with my relationship with food. I find myself obsessing over how many calories I burn and how many calories I take in. Honestly, reading food blogs and seeing people eat healthy has REALLY helped me to stop fearing things like peanut butter. (So WHAT if it has a lot of calories?! Those can be good!) So when I start being irrational, I try to just remind myself that my body NEEDS fuel to be strong!

    Thanks for this post ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s nice to know I’m not the only one out there!

All of your comments make me smile :-)

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