Tag Archives: health

The Final Frootcamp Entry

At last, the end of the road. I did eat the final fourteen fruits over the course of two years. Who never abandoned their posts and did something else instead? Watch as I force these sugary, horrible items down my gullet for the love of the battle. ….You can’t, because I went to grad school and did stuff instead. Woops.

I’ll confess to including tomato, olives, and multiple versions of zucchinis in the final fourteen. Ah-ah-ah, I’m not cheating, Newman! Look that shit up. Fruits that fake out everyone and parade as vegetables have been my only consolation on my health drive. Grad school drove me to binge on many a sugary carb, and I fell off the wagon more times than I climbed on. However, I graduate next May, and I occasionally reappear at the hot yoga studio, so I truly don’t regret how long this took to finish. It’s been a ride, fruit, and I still don’t like you, but now I can respond “Actually I have tried it, and it blows major chunks, thankyouverymuch” to any and all indignant inquisitions.

shakehead


Frootcamp: Week 13, Horned Melon

hornedmelon

Look at this freaking thing. I admire the spikes–it adds a whole new flare to the food, even a tinge of grunge. Orange is also one of my favorite colors (thanks to my Halloween fervor that borders on obsession). No one’s denying this is an alternative, attractive specimen. But there are few–perhaps in fact NO–meals in my life where I want to have the opportunity to ask, “What is this green goop in my mouth?” Horned melons don’t need the horns to avert potential predators… it is literally the most disgusting fruit I’ve attempted to eat yet. I actually thought it might be rotten, and so I took to google to investigate. But it turns out these busted innards are perfectly normal.

prince_no


Frootcamp: Week 12, Watermelon

Ah, watermelon. Wherefore art thou fruit? A food by any other name would taste just as sweet….

watermelon-slices

I guess it’s official. This project has produced three or valuable experiences that lend to long term change: the regular (read: DAILY. Yeah, for real) consumption of bananas, apples, and now watermelon. Once there’s three fruits I tolerate on a regular rotation, I can no longer label myself a fruit hater, right? Touche, Frootcamp project…. well played.

Watermelon has no fat, saturated fat, sodium, or cholesterol, and it tastes just fine–like a watery diet food that’s actually edible. I don’t think there’s a single downside to this fruit. It can even be carved into badass shapes. …….Have I met my match?

This is how I imagine watermelon’s reaction when I bought it for the second time: I’m a fruit, and you love it! …….. dealwithit

 


Frootcamp: Week 11, Nectarine

“Try the nectarine,” he said. “No, it tastes nothing like a peach, whywouldyouevenaskthat,” he said.

Well, I’m sniffing it, and it smells like a peach. So, I already know we’re going to have problems here. I don’t even want to take a bite because already today I’ve been LIED TO re: peachhood.

 

swanson

 

I do NOT. TOUCH. PEACHES. This was the agreement when I took on this project. I will force-feed myself any fruit EXCEPT FOR THE PEACH. Apparently the nectarine is like a peach lite, a mini peach, an orange mush-ball aspiring to full peachitude.

Fuck everything.


Frootcamp: Week 10, Kumquat

kumquat

The most ridiculous of fruits, kumquat, came in at #2 in the “most looked forward to” category of the Frootcamp lineup–right behind dragon fruit, because, dragons. Look at these little guys. Why should tiny oranges warrant such a hilarious name? They don’t have polka dots, spikes, or humorous genital shapes. Truly I didn’t think they were very special. They were just incredibly tart, poppable oranges (the true poptarts). Like if popcorn were healthy, sticky, and required a whole minute to peel. Like a bag of sour patch kids that aren’t fun to eat and aren’t accompanied by that renegade, digestive glee of breaking down gelatin (‘fiery poops’ if you can’t read between the lines).

All in all they weren’t bad.  I won’t embrace kumquats into my daily lunchbox (as I’ve done with apples, bananas, and watermelon), but I also won’t stick my nose up at this creature of the plant world and say “Nay to thee!” All I can do is the Obama face, really. No other reaction seems appropriate.

obama-not-bad-l


Frootcamp: Week 9, Raspberry

Whoa, whoa, whoa. Slow down there, raspberries. I’m not trying to incorporate you into my lunch schedule. I’m not even trying to eat you right now. All I did was put you in my champagne sangria to acclimate my mouth to your flavor so that maybe, mayyyybe I’ll try you for real tomorrow. After all, I can’t think of a better way to deal with force-feeding myself lumpy, red beads with fur coming out of them (?!?!) than to smother said beads in sweet, sweet alcoholic nectar.

———
Next Day Update: I ate one. …Yeah, no. I’m vetoing this week.

caesar


Frootcamp: Week 8, Blackberry

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So, blackberry, we finally meet. You have fuzz, seeds, and little bulges–all the reasons why fruit is untrustworthy. I gave you a lick, but your sour, seedy skin greeted me with a grimace.  What’s a girl to do, then, but smother you in Greek yogurt? Eating my “berries and cream” concoction was grueling on day 1, but by the end of the week was a pseudo welcome distraction from my otherwise warm, dry lunch. In other words I bludgeoned myself into dealing with it for so long that my taste buds stopped fighting, in the same way that my mother actually thinks diet coke tastes great now (she conveniently forgets about the years she spent calling it “bug juice” while giving me her sales pitch for why I should switch). I get it. It had potential. I like yogurt, and in theory I do like berries and cream…. ice cream, that is. But this notion in healthy form? Eh, diets be hard, y’all.

I’m holding a brunch in two weeks, and I was actually inspired by week 8 to create this wonderment of foodie jello shot, the blackberry bramble jello shot. I may even go through with it! But this brings me back to my blackberry experience: shall I incorporate berries and cream into my normal regimen? It wasn’t awful, but it also wasn’t amazing. I might do it again…. But for now, I’ve decided to go with the time-honored tradition of “let’s not and say we did.”

On a related note, this week was littered with my mind singing this song unsolicited at 9am:


Going Natural: The Sometimes Foul, Sometimes Delicious Journey

This post is documentation to my efforts to cook and eat healthier. In no way is it interesting or amusing—it’s simply a pat-on-the-back (a one-man circle jerk, if you will) and a motivational tool to keep me on track. The last several months have seen an overhaul of my cooking and eating structures. About a year ago I began on-again/off-again dieting. Whenever I picked a diet back up I tweaked my methods, sometimes taking more extreme measures and at other times being lax. Each time I became comfortable enough in a new healthier routine to take it to the next level. My current level entails preparing about half of my meals at home with fresh, natural (and often raw) groceries.

I eventually enlisted helpful tools: Pinterest and health food blogs to give me recipes and inspirational jumping-off points. I also adopted a strategy: Pick a few healthy foods I’ve come to enjoy and design meals around those groceries. These ‘foundational foods’ can help me begin a recipe or simply round one out. They are spinach, arugula, cauliflower, sprouts, tomatoes, carrots, gala apples, and nuts.

My goal is not only weight loss, but also improved energy & sleep, better skin complexion, and any other perks generally attributed to an improved diet. With nearly a year of this effort under my belt, I’ve fine-tuned my methods to include most of the foods I enjoyed before the change—just in a healthier way. Getting to that point took a lot of trial, error, and frustrating disappointment, but I’m here. In the same way that folks say “I didn’t like such and such before, but I’ve eaten it so much that I’m used to it,” I too have thankfully grown accustomed to my new way of cooking, eating, and altogether thinking about meals. When I cook now it’s typically from scratch (no microwaves or box mixes) with only fresh meats, vegetables, and fruits. Sometimes I’ll incorporate pita, naan, rice, or oatmeal for a touch of something hearty without taking a gateway to carb utopia (i.e. a focaccia roll w/ rosemary and olive oil. My mouth—it waters….).

A more recent stage of my never-ending trials was blending. A friend explained his blending habit to me and shared a recipe during a Megabus trip back from New York City: water (with a little coconut oil), 2 carrot sticks, 1 cup spinach, 1 cucumber, 1 apple, 1 naval orange peeled, blueberries or acai berries to taste, and 1 cup greek yogurt. The excitement was tangible, so much so that when I made my Wholefoods trip I became overly ambitious, drunk on the notion that I might regularly (and so easily) consume so many fruits and veggies I don’t enjoy by themselves. I grabbed things that didn’t even make sense together, such as blackberries, papaya, and lime, envisioning the blender as a sacred space where everything was possible, where things made sense and tasted delicious merely because they were healthy and made of fruit…. Needless to say, that is not how food works, and my effort was a puke-worthy bust. Blending Test #2 took place shortly thereafter, and its scale was prudently downsized. I restricted myself to only water, 1 apple, 1 orange, 1 chunk of pineapple, and 1 slice of cucumber. This trial went better, but the orange is still far too overpowering.

My blending stage also coincided with the advent of my new cayenne pepper supplement ritual. This wonderfood helps to ease and regulate digestion, prevent migraine headaches (with which I am afflicted), stimulates circulation in the body, and much more.

The next health adventure will be a cleanse beginning Saturday. Previous cleansing ended in constant, debilitating stomach cramps, and I’ve been avoiding another attempt. However, the product recommended to me this time is Colonix, which is supposedly light enough not to interfere painfully with my daily functionality. I realize a cleanse isn’t necessary, but I foresee it adding to my heightened sense of inner hygiene, my newfound “mother nature karma”, and lastly helping me cheat to kill a few more pounds. And with no concern for debilitating cramps this time compounded with the discount I received for the product, I can’t see a downside to this. You win, advertising. We still need to talk about other things, but this round is yours…..

I’ll conclude this self-flattering post with a look back: While the initial goal was only weight loss, as this journey progressed I gained additional goals, all piling on top of each other and becoming a doozy to consider completing. I now additionally want tone and definition to my body, much more energy, better sleep, and I want to disassociate myself from synthetic foods and drugs to a greater extent. The presence of a Wholefoods nearby makes that last goal actually a cakewalk, providing I continue to be willing to pay the higher margin. I should now take this opportunity to give a shout out to my unofficial diet umpire: my manfriend, who tells me “No” when I ask him to and who is always willing to explain the nutritional facts on packages, translating crunchy nonsense into carb-hungry womanzilla-speak for me.


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