Sunday, June 5, 2011

It's Not Your Fault that You are a Food Addict and My Cute Little Herb Garden

What I'm Reading Now: Breaking the Food Seduction by Neal Barnard, M.D.

First off I want to say "thank you" to everyone who left a comment at my post, Plant-strong Success Tip #4: Get Comfortable Asking for What You Need. Making bold statements about behaviors and attitudes can sometimes feel a little scary, so it's really helpful to receive feedback. If I've said it once, I've said it 100 times, receiving comments are fuel to a blogger. They keep me going and inspired, so again, I thank you.

Next I want to talk about a book that only a few days ago did I first lay my hands on. Thanks to my dear friend, fellow warrior and frequent HGK commenter Q.B. for recommending Breaking the Food Seduction by Neal Barnard, M.D. Although I have only read 1/2 of the book, I'm so excited by its contents that I simply could not wait to share it with you.

The lucky ones reading this post have read this book already. You know that becoming an expert is a major key to success on a plant based diet. So this book is probably in your home library.

If you haven't read it and you struggle with making food choices that you know are not optimal for your health, you NEED to read this book. I cannot recommend it enough. Dr. Barnard details out all of the reasons why we get addicted to cheese, meat and sugar.

I actually don't feel guilty about my sugar fixation anymore! It's just how my brain is wired. I get that peaceful, easy feeling (think, The Eagles) . . . I know you won't let me down . . .LOL.

But it's so true, my brain chemistry makes it that sugar feels really great when I eat it. Not so much a few minutes later though, because a little IS NEVER ENOUGH. Substitute in meat or cheese or salty, fatty foods if those are your downfall. It's not your fault. There are opiates in food that work on our moods exactly the same way that illegal drugs do. No wonder I have an addiction.

Does that mean I'm going to give up? Lay down and die? No way! I'm going to follow his 8 step plan so that my drug of choice has much less hold over me. Coincidentally, his plan is basically what I have come to understand and follow over the past two years. So I know that it works. The key? FIBER, the kind found in beans, vegetables and fruits. Eat lots and lots of that and all that other junk doesn't stand a chance!

On another note, how many of you guys are into gardening? Do you grow your own vegetables? Herbs? I have been experimenting the last few years with herb gardening and I have to say, I'm not very good at it yet, but I'm still trying. I know that I've got to do a much better job with the pruning (I tend to get lazy). Here's what I've got on tap this year:
Most of my herbs are in pots. I'm thinking that when the weather gets cold I will bring them all inside near a sunny window and hopefully get many more months of joy from them.

This pot is entirely dedicated to a variety of basils: spicy Thai basil, sweet basil, spicy globe basil and opal basil. I'm growing them as much for the food as I am for how darn adorable they are!

I was very lucky to find a stevia plant and a chamomile plant at Whole Foods last weekend. Now my oldest daughter is steeping a tea from mint, chamomile and stevia that she affectionately calls "Backyard Tea."

Cilantro, sage, oregano, and thyme. The tarragon grows really well in the ground in another spot in my garden, along with chives.

I don't do much with rosemary, but it's so easy to grow I got some anyway. Rosemary just seems like such a chicken compliment, but you know, it goes really well on herb roasted potatoes . . . ummmmm, I'm going to have to make a big pan of them as soon as my oven is hooked up. Sans the oil of course!

Have you read Breaking the Food Seduction? Do you want to?


Barbara said...

This book has been on my "must read" list. I find that I want to read everything I can get my hands on and have 3 or 4 books going at once -- and end up not finishing any of them. One problem is I'm constantly going through cookbooks trying to find recipes that appeal to me as I transition to plant-based. I set a book like The China Study down and don't get back to it for a few days -- then basically need to start over.

My solution is to limit myself to one at a time. And to work with the recipes I have (and/or only look at recipes when I'm meal planning for the week.) Hopefully I'll get to Breaking the Food Seduction soon because it sounds like a winner!

Karena said...

I'm still working my way through The Beck Diet Solution - but I'll have to add this book to my must-read list as well!

Love the herb garden! Rosemary goes really well with white beans - one of my Donna Klein books has a recipe for Tuscan White Bean Soup that everyone - from my 3 year old to my jaded husband - loves!

get rid of toenail fungus said...

It is really nice to have your own garden to grow your own plants for cooking. That way you could have it fresh.

Cheryl said...

Rosemary is wonderful in marinade for mushrooms!!

Alipet813 said...

I just watched Dr. Barnard's show on PBS last night. Very educational! My husband and I are deciding whether or not we want to do the 21 Day Kickstart Diet. Do you know anyone who has done it?

I think I need to grow my own herb garden. I never use all the herbs when I store buy and end up throwing alot away. I would definitely like to have my own cilantro plant!

Wendy said...

Alipet813-Where are you located? Have you ever done the Engine 2 28 day Challenge at Whole Foods? I believe they are pretty much the same thing. They are all worthwhile!

Avi said...

My mom just recommended that book to me but I haven't stolen it from her yet. Clearly some theft is in order in the near-future.

Incidentally, I just happened upon your blog and Lady, you are my new best friend! I read Dr. Furhman's Eat to Live sometime last year and have been trying to follow the nutritarian diet ever since (losing a lot of weight in the process!) but the trouble was finding enough tasty recipes to keep going all week long, especially with a few pooh-pooers in the house. Your recipes, tips, and book recommendations have just given my lifestyle change a new jump-start!

Wendy said...

Avi-So nice to meet you! I'm glad you found my blog. If there is one thing I know for sure, there are no lack of awesome Nutritarian recipes in the world. Just explore my recipe section--that doesn't begin to scratch the surface of what is available through all of the great cookbooks out there. Dr. Fuhrman's member center also has about 900 recipes with rankings by the members.

ViviDu said...

Your herbs look beautiful. I have a good sized rosemary shrub and the long woody stems are perfect for skewers: mushroom, cherry tomatoes, other veg, tofu or haloumi cheese (as a rare treat) - all the meat eaters at a barbecue want to eat mine and I never make enough!

Elisa said...

Thanks for the book recommendation, I'll check it out! And I love your herbs! I planted mine in pots this year also. I'm hoping to bring them in for the winter too. Fingers crossed!

Alipet813 said...

Wendy - I am in the Kansas City area. I have 2 Whole Foods relatively close. I haven't seen anything about Engine 2 on their calendars though. I will keep looking!

Wendy (Healthy Girl) said...

Alipet813-The two challenges are virtually indistinguishable. I encourage you to do whatever the next vegan challenge is that Whole Foods is hosting!

Amy said...

My husband and I watched Dr barnard on PBS about reversing diabetes. My husband recently bought Reversing Diabetes and I am in the middle of Breaking The Food Seduction (which so far has made perfect sense to me especially after I took a substance abuse class in grad school). My husband loved his book so much that he went out and bought it for his cousin's wife who was just recently diagnosed with diabetes. My husband and I are trying to get our act together and get healthy. We both could stand to lose 20-30 pounds and really need to start eating healthier. We also have 3 kids, a 3 year old and 2 year old twins who we want to start out life right not on junk food. They are all on the low end of the growth scale so I am tempted often to just give them anything they want to eat, but I don't want to start bad habits this young. Hopefully we'll be plant strong very soon!

I love your herb garden. I really need to plan a better way to have herbs. One of these days, I'll add an herb garden to the other gardens that we already have. They are so beneficial for so many things!

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