This might not be the healthiest thing I could say, but it is the most honest. I think I am developing a real dislike of food, and eating in general.
Now don't get me wrong. I do enjoy a well-prepared healthy meal, or a fresh ripe juicy tomato from the garden. I do still see junky stuff like cookies or even a yummy homemade/not junky fresh baked pumpkin loaf, and I want to eat those things. Only, I don't. And the brain conflict and food experiences I have had over the last couple of years have left me truly wishing I never had to eat.
Maybe it is just an extreme swing in the 'other' direction after having spent decades *obsessed* with food and eating. I think in time it will level out and I will have a healthy relationship with food. But right now, if I could take an appetite suppressant, never get hungry, and have an IV pump on my arm giving me exactly the nutrients I need to be healthy, I would be pleased to not have to look at or eat food AT ALL. Period.
Then again, if I had a nutritionist and chef who sat down and calculated my nutritional needs and cooked all my meals for me and presented them to me at appropriate times, I wouldn't mind eating, either. So maybe it isn't food I am sick of, but thinking/planning/cooking it. Not really sure.
When I have gone off plan and eaten stuff I was dreaming about, it never tastes that great. I am ALWAYS disappointed. I thought it would be soooo super awesome to have a super special cupcake from the super fancy bakery, but when I bought it and started eating it, it was not that great. It was okay, just not the OMG THIS IS AMAZING experience I expected. When I was craving lasagna, and finally caved and made myself some, it totally sucked because instead of being a transcendent high it was... just a piece of lasagna. Just noodles and stuff. Nothing OMG SO FANTASTIC. And when I decided to finally go ahead and have that club sandwich at a restaurant, it was... just a sandwich. Just bread and lettuce and stuff. I mean it was fine. It tasted fine. But it didn't change my life. It didn't do what I thought it would do. It was a total letdown. So was the ice cream sundae I thought FOR SURE would take me to a new plane of happiness. But can you believe this... it was just.... ice cream. And toppings. And I didn't give a crap if I finished it, and I don't give a crap if I never have one again.
All of this would be okay except I feel the same way about pretty much everything lately. Spinach salad? Meh. Steak prepared on the grill just the way I like it? So what, it is just meat. Scrambled eggs and fresh peppers for breakfast? Sigh, what a drudgery, who cares? I only eat it because I have to, to be healthy... to be sustained. And I do get hungry and sometimes feel light-headed if I wait too long to eat. I need to eat. But I wish I didn't.
Okay, so maybe this means I am at a new (good?) place in my life where food IS just food, it does NOT mean anything else to me anymore. Hey, I have wished for that to happen. It's a good thing, in a way. But I have been coping with it in two different ways:
1) At first, I didn't know what was happening. I didn't like it. What?? Eating this ice cream does nothing for me??? I better try it again. Maybe a bag of M&M's will do it. No? Maybe some Belgian chocolate then... how about some chips?? Why is nothing working??
2) And then, when I realized that my food has become just FOOD, I had to sit down and figure out how to get in the correct amount of nutrition without having to constantly force feed myself stuff I don't care about.
One of the nice things about being on Medifast is that I can just drink a shake and be done with it. I don't have to care about it, think about it, interact with it, or anything. I just drink it. Nourished. Done. However I have been struggling with the whole "Lean and Green" meal thing because I have to prepare my meat/protein, my healthy fats, and my vegetables every day and NOTHING sounds good anymore! So what I ended up doing is buying a whole lot of plain, nonfat Greek yogurt and large bags of fresh baby spinach. Twelve ounces of Greek yogurt is a "Leanest" portion and 3 cups of baby spinach is a Green. I can add the Greek yogurt and the spinach to my Medifast shakes. I can also add spinach to my Medifast scrambled eggs or soups. Or I can eat the Greek yogurt in a bowl, plain or with Splenda, with Barlean's fish oil stirred in for the healthy fat. (I know fish oil in yogurt sounds gross, but Barleans comes in lots of flavors and trust me, does NOT taste fishy! I love it). So right now there is pretty much no prep, no shopping, no thinking. I just have my yogurt and spinach and Medifast meals and feel fine.
I do worry how this is going to work when I switch back to whole foods, though. I mean, if I don't "get" anything out of food (except nutrition), how am I going to decide what to eat? Medifast has a Transition plan that is very detailed, but if it says "3 vegetable servings and one lean protein" for lunch, or "one fruit serving and one dairy serving" for snacks, that still means I have to think, plan, decide, eat. I don't want to trigger myself back into food obsession. I am pretty nervous about how I am going to eat for the rest of my life. Whole foods? Yes. But the actual mechanics? More complex. I figure if all else fails I can keep having Greek yogurt, hard boil a dozen eggs and keep them in the fridge with light string cheese, and make my own protein shakes with spinach in them. I can have nuts and seeds and maybe some grains but it is the whole measure/count/figure out thing that I hate... that I burned out on after two years of blogging and losing 64 pounds.
I think if I can just find and list 3 or 4 breakfasts, lunches, and dinners I enjoy (and a couple of snacks), and just stick with those, that will make the choosing and simplicity doable. We'll see.
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