Day 125-126 – Will the REAL FOOD Please Step Forward – May 30-31, 2016 – Have you ever had an egg without salt? Tea without sugar? Corn on the cob without salted butter? Cutting back on sugar and salt has been a new and unique experience. Little did I know how much I depended upon sugar or salt for the “flavor” in my food.
The other day, we were in a restaurant for breakfast and we saw a young man seasoning his food. First it was salt ~ shake, shake, shake, shake again, and again and a little more shake shake. Next was pepper and it was the same thing. I would guess he put a dozen shakes or more each of salt and pepper. Then came the hot sauce.
I have a friend who’s nearly 12-year-old son, coats his food, all of his food, with pepper. I wonder, does he do this because he likes the flavor of pepper or because he doesn’t like the flavor of his food? It’s hard to tell. But I do wonder about this habit of coating his food with pepper. I sometimes wonder how his future boss or wife will take to his pepper craving and if they will find it awkward at a business dinner or insinuating her cooking isn’t good. Hum.
While personally, I have nothing against pepper or hot sauce, I do have a concern for excess salt (sodium). As I’ve written about many times in my blog posts, not much good comes out of too much salt in the body. (My scale is proof!)
True Story ~ One day in a restaurant for breakfast, I saw a young, 5 year-old (or so) girl pick up the salt shaker and put it to her mouth as she downed the salt. This is scary ~ for more reasons than one. Mom was sitting right next to her. I told her what happened and she didn’t seem phased at all. She just took the salt shaker and set it aside, barely out of reach of the child. Apparently, this is normal behavior for this child (and mother). I told the server so she could pull the shaker for washing as soon as they left.
Seeing the young man in the restaurant the other day got me thinking ~ do we really know what our food tastes like in its more natural state? Every food cooking show will reinforce the need to salt and pepper each food or meal. Salt is in almost everything. Sugar too.
Seasoning has its place for sure and cutting back on sugar and salt (pepper doesn’t seem to have any negative effect) most certainly changes the taste. The hardest part of getting healthy and losing weight is finding the right balance of each.
A few months ago, I wrote a post called, Day 10 – Ignorance is Bliss. In this post I shared an article where the author talks about manufacturers’ scientific formulas for packaged, processed foods and beverages. Formulas specifically designed to create the greatest amount of crave. It is no accident that sugar, fat and salt find their way into the ingredient list for food products. Manufacturers’ spend an enormous amount of time, money and research to find that sweet spot or “Bliss Point” in an effort to get consumers to crave more of their products. (I encourage you to click on the link to read the post)
Day 125-126 – Will the REAL FOOD Please Step Forward
If you are trying to lose weight, I challenge you to try your favorite meals or foods without adding salt or sugar. If you are like me, it’s not easy and it takes time to adjust to the new, “real” flavor. While real food doesn’t come with a label ~ Real Food is used to make home-cooked meals, restaurant meals, frozen foods, packaged foods, snacks and much more. And they are typically loaded with salt, sugar and fat (not to mention a host of other ingredients real and otherwise).
For the past several weeks, I’ve been trying to eliminate artificial sweeteners from my diet. Now this is a real challenge because I also want to reduce and eliminate as much real sugar from my diet. I’ve been drinking my ice tea ~ 1/2 sweetened and 1/2 unsweet. Slowly, I am making progress and finding a balance.
When I order a meal out, I now request “Light oil and NO added salt.” It’s shocking how salty restaurant food can be. I’ve written several blog posts on the sodium in restaurant food. This request seemed awkward at first but now I just look it as if I have a food allergy or sensitivity. The restaurants have been very accommodating.
If I do decide to add a little salt to my meal, I put the salt in the palm of my hand first so that I can see how much salt I am actually adding. I also started buying unsalted butter to have at home.
As in anything, it takes time and practice to form a new habit.
So what’s in your food? And do you know what your food really tastes like?
Will the REAL FOOD please step forward?
Facing MY FAT,
To follow my blog, go to my home page and SUBSCRIBE (enter email address)