Blog

18
Nov

Day 7- Find a Helicopter

Even though we are older and probably not feeling the the strong holds of peer pressure, we are still subject to  the habits of those around!  At times, we can even be our own worst enemies by the situations we place ourselves in, the thoughts we think and the sensory stipulations we are subject to!

Weekends in my house are the easiest days for me.  I am not exposed to people making food choices different than mine or smells of foods that I choose not to eat!  If I go to the mall… The sights and smells at the food court are killer!!  Even though I tell myself I do not want that food..I can visualize it, I can taste it and of course I can smell it!

School days are often the most difficult! People bring in candy, donuts, pastries and junk food they empty out of their own cupboards! Lunchtime brings it’s own challenges! Fellow teachers bringing in McDonalds, pizza, Arby’s…pretty much any fast food you can think of they bring it in! I should be excited that my meal is happy, but instead I find myself looking longingly at what they have knowing it is so unhealthy but tastes so good!

In the midst of these daily eating challenges, I have been able to identify people who help me stay on track when the struggle is staring me in the face!
My cousin Melissa and my psychologist Rich both encourage and walk me through the valleys. I found the following image helpful when I ran into a bump in the road last week. I emailed Rich last week to ask for some tactics to get past the thoughts I was having! He seemed to know all the right things to say to get back on track! He said to “Think of me as the helicopter flying over the traffic jam. I look at the big picture.”

It is sad but a few of my good friends asked my why I would give up sugar and claimed it was crazy and they would never do it! I never expected this kind of response from them. I even know some that would walk into my classroom eating a cookie and say “oh I would offer you one but it has things you can’t eat.”

I often wish people would be a little more gentle and a little less crass. But at the same time, gentleness doesn’t always provide the opportunity to build strength! I pray that each person can find their own “helicopter” to help identify bumps in the road, ways to work through them and positive encouragement on days when things are flowing smoothly!

18
Nov

Sara’s Day 7 – Be Strong

Today’s challenge was interesting for me. Dr. Albers makes a good point about dining companions having a significant impact on how we eat.  It’s important to be conscious of the way others change the way we eat.

Sundays are always a difficult day for me; everyone is home, relaxing, and often mindless munching. Sometimes I think eating is contagious. We see others grab a snack, and automatically we reach for one too.  I try to keep junk out of our house, to help all of us make better choices. If we have a “treat” like soda, cookies, etc. I try to keep it off the counter and out of sight.  On the other hand, I try to promote healthy snacking by keeping a fruit bowl brimming with fresh fruit (this time of year – fresh Michigan apples – red and yellow – yum!).  I also make time to clean, chop, prepare my vegetables when I get home from the store. So fresh, ready-to-eat options in clear containers meet us front-and-center when we open the refrigerator.

Truly, this Sunday, we were under serious storm watches for the afternoon and evening (high wind warnings, tornadoes, hail, sleet, thunderstorms, etc.) so the stress of watching the weather reports had me wishing for a snack. I watched my husband grab crackers, a granola bar, then he made coffee with flavored white chocolate mocha creamer, which almost send me out of my tree for an indulgence.  Very often, if I feel I can’t trust myself to make good food decisions, I will take a Sunday afternoon nap. My logic? while I’m not burning calories, I’m not eating calories either!  Besides, it’s a perfect opportunity to rest and recharge for the week ahead.  It’s been an effective tactic for awhile now so I headed to the couch, cuddled with Piper – my poo-chi terrier, and zonked out while the Lions football game droned in the background.

Very often on Sunday evenings, I lay out a spread of finger foods and we “graze” on things like veggies and dip, apple slices and peanut butter, chips and salsa, crackers and cheese, popcorn, lettuce salad, etc.  This is the one night a week when we fill our plates and watch television. The kids like choosing what they want to eat, I like the simplicity of the meal, and minimal clean-up.

So that was my Sunday. Throughout the day, I remained mindful of my choices, my companions, and my food options.

Oh, and I read the Social Eating chapter in Dr. Albers EatQ book – and found it very helpful with tips for eating over the holidays, at parties and restaurants. Special occasion eating is always a challenge.  Thanks for your pointers Dr. A!

Sara

18
Nov

Sara’s Day 6 – Voices In My Head

Boy, it is so easy to criticize myself for the choices I make. Yet I find when I am kind to myself, making the best choice comes easier.

This is an area I have really been working on over the last few months.  Becoming aware of my own harsh thoughts and judgments is just not helpful in loving myself.  It has become so important to change the direction of these thoughts, forgive myself and look for a positive way to acknowledge my efforts.  This learning has been HUGE for me over the last few months. I find when I cut myself a little slack, but continue to be responsible, I am a much kinder person, mother, co-worker, friend, coach.

I loved today’s challenge of writing down five encouraging phrases, sayings or quotes and using them for motivation.  Being a former Weight Watchers leader, I kept several encouraging quotes in my mind and often used one to close my meetings.

Lately, as I’ve shared in a previous post, the mantra that keeps me focused on making healthy choices as I prepare for a meal (or bite-by-bite on tough days) is pausing and thinking “Will this bite take me closer to my goals, or further away?”

9 times out of 10, this simple thought slows me down, keeps me in control, and guides me to my choice.  For example, before I reach for another piece of pizza, I pause and ask myself “will this piece of pizza take me closer to my goal, or further away?”. Powerful! Effective! And an opportunity to praise myself for a choice well done.

Another classic mantra? “Nothing tastes as good as healthy feels.”

Healthy blessings,

Sara

17
Nov

Tina’s Day 7- I said “No Thanks”!

Today’s challenge is REALLY important with the upcoming HOLIDAYS. Being mindful of how others’ eating habits and comments effect my eating and also making a list of those who help versus those who hinder was helpful. I definitely noticed how quickly and mindlessly my lunch companion was eating and the huge bites they took. So, I did the opposite. I slowed down, took smaller bites and put my fork down between bites. I said an intention, recited my mantras from yesterday’s challenge, considered the origin of my earthy sweet potato and silently expressed gratitude for my meal.

As I made my list of those who help versus hinder I thought about Dr. Susan Albers’ advice on “food pushers”. I know it sounds harsh, but around the holidays sweet Aunt Sally suddenly “pushes” her Pecan Pie like a dealer pushes a drug. “Oh come on. A small slice won’t hurt. I worked hard to make it especially for you. You’ll hurt my feeling if you don’t eat some.” Guilt and peer pressure are two tactics at play by the food pusher. Worse than the food pusher is the “food police”.
My favorite strategy Dr. Albers mentions is to “Divert & Deflect”, by asking for the recipe for example. Brilliant. Of course a firm solid “No Thanks” should do the trick.

I struggled yesterday, but I worked on adding structure & savored every mindful bite at my mindful table. So fully experienced was my turkey burger that I picked up on the spicy flavor on the first bite. Turns out it was a Jalapeño turkey burger:-)

20131117-185515.jpg

15
Nov

Day 4 Sue Stopping Yourself

I’m back after a one-day “pause” … I needed time to reflect on this.
When I stopped eating sugar seven years ago, a few things happened.
One is that, after about three months, I never “craved” food again. Really. Truly. I haven’t “craved” anything in seven years!
Now, sometimes I “want” to eat for some other reason … Usually because I am tired or am avoiding doing something that I don”t want to do …
The other thing that happened when I gave up sugar is that I added in to my diet healthy, unprocessed foods — Lots of vegetables and fresh fruit. That means that I rarely have trouble stopping once I have made a good choice, because fresh fruits and vegetables are self-limiting. I don’t have to MAKE myself stop. They do it for me :-)!
I do have two techniques I use, however, to delay the “starting” of eating to determine how real the “want” is.
Tea is number one. I’m not a natural fan of tea but I have worked hard to find a few that I LOVE … Sans sugar. I like Egyptian Licorice Mint and Chrysanthemum. By the time I make the tea and enjoy it, I have time to check-in with myself about why I want to eat. Also, the warmth of the tea in my stomach comforts and fills me long enough to pause and make a good decision.
The other technique I use is almonds. I ALWAYS have a 100-calorie pack of almonds with me everywhere I go. The almonds are a great anti-dote for low blood sugar, which can be fueling the “want”. Eating the almonds is enjoyable and satisfying. They stabilize my blood sugar so that I can delay eating until I’m able to make a better decision or find healthy food choices.

14
Nov

Tina’s Day 4- Take a Paws

After dinner I found myself thinking about the seasonal Gingerbread Cookie ice cream we had bought for the kids. I’m full and satisfied from a well rounded nutritionally adequate dinner. I’m not hungry. Why am I craving ice cream? For one thing it tastes great and secondly, I’m still feeling a bit emotional. I decided to try the Elaborate Intrusion Pause method.  I looked around the room for something to focus on. The lamp? No. The photo album. Nah. Coat rack? Laundry basket? Awe … My cat. Sure; why not?

For two minutes I focused on the color and shape of my cat. My cat has a shiny black coat of fur, from this view he’s curled up in the fetal position and my cat has no tail. I watched as he bathed himself & blinked his eyes repeatedly. Similar to mindful eating, I took in the sight, sound and feel of him with all my senses. I promised myself that I can have ice cream in two minutes if I still want some. I gave myself permission to eat it after two minutes and reminded myself that no food is off limits or forbidden.
Two minutes passed. I reminded myself that if I’m still craving ice cream, I can take another pause with a hot bubble bath. I’m okay ….I’m okay for tonight.

12
Nov

Sara’s Day 2 – Snooze I Lose…

My mother taught me to be honest, so…..today was a total ZONK.

I’ve learned over the years to be transparent when leading Weight Watchers meetings – and not pretend or presume that when one gets to weight goal, life is peachy.  Today, life for me was the pits.  Here’s why:

Contrary to what I have believed in the past, having PMS is not a ticket to eat endlessly. Today was a crabby day for me. The good news is I have recently become aware of these girl-cravings (chocolate, grease, Diet Coke) and have made valiant efforts to ignore these cravings only to raid the refrigerator and all cupboards and cabinets in search of a suitable substitute. The unfortunate lesson has been that all efforts to substitute still left me searching for THE craving. Needless to say that over the years, I have prowled all kitchen surfaces and eaten a whole lot of things that didn’t meet the need, then ended up overindulging (read: borderline abusing) the craved item anyway. I seem to make progress little by little each month since I’ve been practicing mindful eating. So today I ate the craving but made a few small changes and am satisfied with the compromise.  It was meeting night for my husband and I so (because I didn’t plan ahead) we ordered pizza and breadstix from our favorite local pizza hot spot. But here are a few changes I made:

  • I enjoyed cream and sugar in my morning coffee (instead of my typical black) to indulge my sweet tooth
  • I ordered a medium pizza to go (instead of the all-you-can-eat buffet) which limits the consumption by sharing between four of us (and saves us $$$)!
  • I had half-glass of soda (instead of 2-3 glasses) and finished the meal with water
  • I cut my pizza slices in half (instead of mindlessly gulping down two big slices and reaching for more)
  • I took the time to TASTE and SAVOR each bite of pizza, breadstix and soda.
  • I listened to the excited chatter from my kids about their day at school and my hubby’s work day (instead of being focused on shoveling in the carbs and missing the conversation).

I’ve also learned to acknowledge that days like this aren’t ideal, but are also far-and-fewer between too. I have already forgiven myself for the slip ups, and acknowledged the learnings and adjustments I’ve made.

I started the day with Yoga (a new thing for me), and plan to end my day with a few minutes of peaceful prayer and meditation. I’m learning to be kind and patient with myself, even when the day didn’t go as planned. After all, a little kindness goes a long way in learning to love oneself again.

Kindness, forgiveness, encouragement. Three things I practice each day for better health. You should too.

Hugs,

Sara

12
Nov

Day 2 – Sue

Well, so much for hoping today would be less stressful and busy!

My life really isn’t usually this busy … it’s just that a lot of projects at work are getting busy all at once (probably because our year-end performance reviews are coming up and people are scurrying around trying to meet their goals … including me!)

I had to get up early so that I could be ready to lead a meeting with IT people in France, Singapore and China.  I didn’t sleep well because I was worried about having to wake up early so that I’d be at work early, so I was tired on top of stressed this morning.  But I ate my standard breakfast and the meeting went well.

But because I had to get up early, I got hungry between breakfast and lunch.  Luckily, a friend had brought a new kind of tea into work and gave me a bag to try.  I used my new “slow down” skills to thoroughly savor the tea.  It was Chrysanthemum tea that she had purchased at an Asian market.  It was WONDERFUL! I enjoyed every sip.

I was able to go outside for a walk at lunch, which has been part of my daily routine since losing 52 pounds seven years ago.  I enjoy how the walk breaks up the day, and then I eat at my desk when I return. I usually pack my own lunch (a large salad with some kind of lean protein like tuna, salmon or chicken).  I find that I have better portion control when I pack my own lunch.  When the bowl is empty, lunch is over! I enjoyed the time at lunch, because I was texting with my daughter at college.  She was creating her first website, and it was fun to be in communication with her.

When I got home for dinner, I was VERY tired … so I took a quick nap.  My husband and I are recent empty nesters, so there is less urgency around when dinner is prepared.  I usually get home a little bit before him and start dinner, but tonight I knew the best thing to do was to take a little nap.  I knew that if I didn’t, I would just snack my way around the kitchen, confusing fatigue with hunger!

After my nap, I realized that I really WAS hungry and it would be about an hour before we would be ready to eat.  So I prepared a snack of two rice cakes with half an avocado and a little sprinkle of sea salt. It’s one of my favorite snacks.

When he came home, we enjoyed preparing dinner together.  And then we ate. I ate slowly and deliberately, savoring each bite.  The snack had taken the edge off my hunger, so I was able to slow down and enjoy each bite.

I’m having fun with this challenge.  Even though it’s been such a busy week, I’m enjoying a least TRYING to slow down. Tomorrow I have one more stressful meeting to be prepared for, and then the rest of the week should slow down to a normal pace.

Ta ta for now!

12
Nov

Tina’s Day 2 – Be Here Now

Before eating, I set aside all reading materials, electronics and sat at the dining table for the first time in months.  I laminated a Mindful Eating place mat & lit candles.  At breakfast, I noticed the shape of the diced ham & potatoes, and the golden brown hue of my toast with egg white scramble. The vibrant, festive red and green of the olives stood out in contrast with the egg whites. I tuned in to the crunchy crust and chewy center of of my toast, and the soft, fluffy texture of the egg whites. Also apparent to me was the squishy “mouthfeel” of the diced potatoes and dense texture of the ham. My pumpkin coffee was fully experienced including it’s rich aroma.
Flavors ranged from spicy to “earthy”. Textures ranged from gritty to crumbly. Realizing that I had finished all of my eggs and most of my toast, I tuned in to my hunger. Where would I rate it on a hunger scale of 1-10? Did I “need” to finish this half slice of toast? hmmm It was surprisingly difficult to be present enough to tune into hunger and fullness sensations. I took one more bite, another sip and listened quietly to my body. I felt full and satisfied. In the absence of comforting myself with food, I was was feeling a little bit “emotionally empty” if that makes any sense, and yet somehow I felt a sense of calm as well.

At lunch and dinner, I didn’t aim to eat the fat free, sugar free, flavor free fare that I try to live off of. I trusted myself with delicious favorites such as Tamales, Sweet Potato and veggie Soup & allowed myself a dessert.
I didn’t over eat. I didn’t stuff myself at a rapid fire, mindless pace.
I didn’t deny myself delicious foods because of calorie counts and fat grams.
I ate slowly, immersing myself in as many flavors, textures, aromas, shapes and sounds as my five senses could savor. I didn’t take on other tasks while I was eating.  On a hunger scale of 1-10, I’m at a solid, comfortable 7; neither famished nor stuffed.
I did my best to stay present.  My goal … Be Here Now:)

 

11
Nov

Day 1 – Andrea

Hi there! Today was a very exciting day. The first thing I did when I woke up was run to get my computer and see the challenge of the day. I printed the file to use every time I ate during the whole day. I also saved the file so I could go back and read it later.

As a busy mom, I don’t have much time. So, I read the tips carefully for the day, along with some other tips I found on Dr. Albers ’website, and off I went to fight my eating habits.

My first experience of timing my pace was during breakfast. In my home country, we don’t eat a big breakfast, so I always have a coffee with one slice of toast. While I was preparing the coffee I could smell the delicious aroma and I started to be mindful of it. When I sat at the table with my coffee and toast, I thought about the two adjectives to describe my toast (I like my toast with American cheese on top, weird!?)  I took a moment and observed the nuts and grains in the bread, and the color of the cheese. After smelling it, I took the first bite. I put the toast on the plate, and I paid close attention to the texture and flavor. Before taking my second bite, my 3 years old daughter was starting her breakfast, so I thought she could do the same exercise of finding adjectives for her breakfast. She was going to eat a piece of toast and an egg. The adjectives she picked were hot, yellow, and white. I thought that it would be great if from a young age we learn how to eat mindfully. While we were having breakfast, we were talking and I was sharing the tips to eat slower with my husband. I was surprised that probably took three times longer to eat than it usually takes me each morning. At the end, I felt satisfied and ready to take on the day.

I did the same exercise at lunch eating my sandwich, putting my sandwich on the plate and taking breaks between bites. I didn’t time it, but I know I ate slower.

Today was my day to drive to my university. I got a coffee for my 3 hour drive. Normally, by the time I arrive to the edge of the town where I live, I am almost done with my coffee. This time I took the time to smell it and savor the flavor. I had driven almost one hour from home and still had warm coffee in my travel mug. Between sips, I called my family in Argentina on the phone, my husband to check on my daughter, and I thought a lot about how eating slowly affected my humor today. I felt like I had power and control over my eating.

In the class I am taking at the university there are only 20 people. Since it is a Montessori class, the program is trying to create community amongst the students by having a snack break in the middle of the section where we all eat together. Each class, one student brings a snack for the rest of their classmates. There are always many delicious things like cookies, chips and dips, fruits, and chocolates. Today while I was eating, again I took my time. I put my hands on my lap and I stopped to watch how my classmates were eating. Surprisingly, I was the last one to finish eating and it was not because I had more food than them, but because of the techniques I was trying.

I am extremely happy how the day went. I shared the tips with my sister from Argentina who already asked me to type everything in Spanish for her. Another friend of mine was going to try to sign up for the challenge although she hasn’t been speaking English very long. This seems to be an issue for people all over the world who have been dieting and being counting calories for years. Hopefully this way they too will learn to enjoy food at a slow pace and will help many of us alter those bad habits of eating that make us struggle with food.

 

11
Nov

Day 1 – Sue

I am an IT Project Leader … and today was just one of THOSE days! I had to lead two large meetings so I was literally racing through the day from breakfast through late afternoon. No chance to apply pacing at breakfast or lunch. But I knew this in advance. No surprise here.

I was in a better position at dinner time to slow down and set my pace. I was watching the evening news with my husband as we ate. Seeing the stories of people affected by the typhoon tragedy in the Philipines made it easy to slow down and appreciate each bite … to be thankful for what I have and to savor each bite.

Tomorrow will be a less hectic day at work, so I’m looking forward to a slower pace for the day … and for each meal 🙂

WIsh me luck!

11
Nov

Day 1- Racer or Pacer?

Are you a racer or a pacer?  That is the question. When I read that question this morning I answered rather quickly…RACER!  Everything we do these days needs to be done quickly so we can move on to the next activity. Eating slowly, easy life style change right?  Wrong!

On my way to take the children to lunch, I was going over in my mind how I was really going to take a moment and plan out how I was going to eat my lunch.  By the time I got back to the teacher’s lounge (only 5 min later), I got involved talking and unpacking my lunch and before I knew it I was sitting down eating!  My lunch was half gone before it struck me (like lightening) that I was supposed to take a moment and prepare.  I stopped and took a few breaths (I must have been eating so fast that I was out of breath) and imagined I was eating my eggplant at a small cafe in the Tuscan countryside. (I enjoy visualizing imaginatively)  I would certainly be slowly taking it all in if I were in Tuscany!    Once I slowed down, I was able to use the rest of my lunch time to finish.

I often find myself eating quickly and then looking around for what else I can eat, mostly because I ate whatever it is so fast that it’s gone!  I realize I am not even aware of each bite let alone the many different flavors that make up the meal.  I can spend hours eating a meal with a friend.  Eating slowly, chatting, savoring and nourishing my body and soul. I need to work on being my own best friend and eating similarly when I am alone!  After all, I am WORTH the time!  We are ALL worth the time!

New personal daily challenge: Slowly & Savoringly! (I love making up new words!)

 

11
Nov

Sara’s Day 1 – I’m a Recovering Racer, Learning to Pace

For the last several months I’ve been learning to be more mindful about eating so I laughed right out loud when the very first challenge is still something I’m trying to get a grip on. Our fast-forward culture emphasizes multi-tasking and efficiency. So becoming aware of eating and the process seems very counter-cultural to me. So it is refreshing to be reminded during this challenge to GET SLOW and stay slow. It’s intriguing to me to look at the way America eats – through fast food windows, convenience products – frozen, chopped, sliced or heat-n-eat – and now ‘speed dating meals’, to name a few. Did you know there is a movement to bring the joy back into preparing and cooking meals and bring families back together around a table for good, nutritious food and healthy conversation? On our busy days, we do rely on convenience foods and drive-thru’s, but I’ve made a bigger emphasis on home-cooked meals for my husband and boys (ages 8 and 12) in the last few months. We’ve noticed a difference in our wallets and in joyful conversation.

Today I enjoyed reading through Dr. Susan’s materials that came with our first challenge and on her website. For lunch I intentionally slowed down, said a prayer of gratitude for the farmer who grew my salad and fixin’s, then took a moment to take in the color and the beauty of the deep leafy greens, cucumber, green bell pepper, shiny grape tomatoes. I sought out different flavors with each bite – pinto beans, turkey pepperoni, Italian dressing, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. I tried chewing each bite at least 20 times and to identify the texture, flavor, temperature of each bite. I even tried to use my right hand to feed my self, as Dr. suggests, but that didn’t last too long! I must be very south-pawed. 🙂

I enjoyed this eating experience and will continue to slow down, savor, and enjoy my meal with intent and purpose. Until tomorrow….happy chewing! Sara

11
Nov

Tina’s Day 1 – Look down Slow Down

I was looking forward to today’s challenge since the prevailing theory is that it take 20 minutes for our brain to register satiety.  Despite the anxiety filled morning I’ve had, I set an an intention of 20 minutes and decided to take slow, deliberate bites. I’m so used to the having a distraction such as television or reading and rushing through my meals. Perhaps all to avoid emotions, because there are a few bubbling to the surface today.

I ate my breakfast at home and used a smaller spoon and a timer app to help slow my pace which was 23 minutes. As for lunch, it didn’t seem worth the harried drive home, so I stayed at the clinic. Hearing my co-workers bustling around wasn’t helping at all, so I went into the massage room, put my headphones on with slow relaxing music to set the pace and put my fork down between bites. While I did study a bit, 30 minutes later I was happy that I hadn’t rushed through my meal AND realized I was full, satisfied and there was no need to finish the rest just because it was there.
As I prepare my final meal, I’m feeling confident about a mindful dinner:)

9
Nov

Eat.Q. Blogger: Meet Sara!

Sara Wolfsen, 39, has struggled with weight since elementary school. The ups-and-downs of life have sent her weight in several directions. In 2006, she finally reclaimed her health, lost 80 pounds, and became a Meeting Leader for a popular worldwide weight loss program. During this time she became aware of her blossoming passion for wellness and nutrition and has recently become a Certified Health Coach in West Michigan. Through individual and group coaching she guides others to understand the powerful role that food has on optimal health while promoting positive body image and lifestyle balance.

Sara is a self-confessed peanut butter lover and has finally learned to enjoy this tasty treat in moderation. She does not care for seafood of any kind nor the ‘fishy’ smell.

Sara’s goal during the EatQ challenge is to learn even more about her own mindful eating so she can help others become aware of its benefits, better food choices and healthy body signals.

To learn more about coaching services by phone or Skype, visit Ideal Wellness Solutions on Facebook or www.idealwellness.org.

9
Nov

Eat.Q. Blogger: Meet Tina!

My name is Tina, I’m 47 years young and I work as a Physiotherapy Assistant.

I have struggled with eating, food, scales and calories since the age of 14. I am a Certified Fitness Trainer and I received my certification at my highest weight of 248. I was desperate and willing to do anything to lose weight so that I could fit into to tough fitness industry standards. I lost 100 pounds, developed an eating disorder and gained the weight back.

Realizing my struggle with food was serious, I sought treatment for my eating disorder 2 years ago. My diagnosis is EDNOS; an (Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified) and I was described as having anorexic thinking & bulimic behavior.

I’m glad to say that I’m no longer struggling at my highest weight. I’m hoping to regain health AND reach a place of recovery with food/eating. I hope to no longer define myself by a number on the scale. I know mindful eating will help me on my path to recovery, help me stay in tune with my body, be present and engage all my senses to savor meals and heal my relationship with food.

I plan to complete my 4th half marathon soon.

1 food I couldn’t live without is cereal.

1 food I hate is radish because of its sharp taste.

One goal for the EatQ Challenge is to set up a mindful table with place mates, candles and calm.

9
Nov

Eat.Q. Blogger: Meet Andrea!

I am very excited to be part of this challenge! I am a super busy mom (3 year old girl and 6 month old baby girl) and a Montessori Preschool-Kindergarten teacher. On top of that, I am pursuing a master’s degree which requires a 3 hour drive, one way, to reach my university. I must travel twice a week to take classes, and I do homework and readings when my daughters are sleeping until late at night. I couldn’t do it without the support of my wonderful husband. I have been struggling with food since I was 12 years old.

I came from Argentina and over there most people really care about being fit and looking skinny. I have tried all kinds of diets. In my home country it is very popular to go to a nutritionist. So, I have tried many of them. I know exactly what I need to eat to be healthy, but I believe eating issues relate to the psyche and that we need to learn to have self-control. I used to eat a lot of vegetables in my home country. When I moved to the US, I started adjusting my diet to my husband’s taste and he doesn’t like veggies much. I still enjoy vegetables so much but it is easier to cook and eat what everyone else likes since I like everything. I love exercising, but right now, I don’t have time. I plan to go back to exercising as soon as I finish my master’s degree.

1 Food that I Can Live Without: Things that I eat with my coffee like pastries, doughnuts, cakes!

1 Food I Hate: That is the only thing that came to my mind. I like everything!

One Goal for the EatQ Challenge: Start controlling the amount of food I eat and try to watch the quality and quantity again without being on a strict diet counting calories. I hate it! Of course, lose some weight.

9
Nov

Eat.Q. Blogger: Meet Sue!

I lost 52 pounds in 52 weeks by conquering my sugar addiction. I’ve kept off every pound for seven years.

1 Food I Couldn’t Live Without: Do “vegetables” count as one? I rely on vegetables as my go-to food, when I want to feel full or just eat a lot.

1 Food I Hate (and why): Sugar, because of how it controlled my life for so long!

One Goal for the EatQ Challenge: To approach eating from a “softer,” simpler way with some new tools to help keep me fresh and on my toes in maintaining my weight loss.

9
Nov

Eat.Q. Blogger: Meet Christine!

Hi everyone! I am a 32 year old second grade Catholic school teacher! I love my job! Now the food that hangs around the teacher’s lounge and the chocolate hidden in my desk drawers are a very different story!  I also enjoy reading, knitting and scavenging Pinterest!

For as long as I can remember I have had food issues! I celebrate, comfort and soothe with food!  My biggest struggle is my sugar and processed food addiction, which I am currently working to overcome! I have a bucket list and dream book a mile long (waiting until the thinner me emerges to begin checking things off) and I LOVE shoes (they always fit)!

I don’t think I could ever live without french fries and I can’t stand the fishy taste of baked fish! At the end of this 10 day challenge, I desire to have acquired a few more tools to help me look at food as nourishment and not as emotional support!