Eating Like an Adult

>> Wednesday, July 10, 2013

I'll give you that pesto crust pizza recipe I promised tomorrow. I've just been meaning to write this particular post for a while. A continuation of where we left off regarding my current diet, but couldn't seem to finish it. You see, in all my food adventures, I've received some amazingly supportive notes/emails/comments. I try and thank each person individually because these words of encouragement mean a ton, but if I have somehow missed anyone along the way: THANK YOU.

On the flip side, I've also found some harsh messages to balance out drag down all the good vibes. One such phrase that stuck with me? How I should "grow up" with regard to my high sugar consumption and start "eating like an adult." After I fumed at the flippant, nasty (at least I imagined) tone, I stopped to consider what this person was imploring me to do.

In most ways, I do eat the things I should be eating at this stage -- and in any stage -- of my life. I crave kale, brussels sprouts, swiss chard, collard greens, and all sorts of other weird veggies my child-self would have made disgusted faces at. I love tofu and all sorts of weird proteins. I eat whole grains and drink mostly water. I try my best to use healthy fats like olive oil versus butter, etc.

But . . . adults don't eat bags of candy. Right? Or, at least they should have the self-discipline not to do that sort of thing. A basic knowledge of nutrition and perhaps enough memories of childhood gorging sessions to know it's just not a good idea.

Wow. This whole train of thought made me feel 10,000x worse than ever.

I mean . . . why do I find myself powerless at times to spoonfuls of chocolate chip cookie dough? Or entire multiple chocolate bars? Peanut butter cups? Or whatever sugary crap is left around at parties? Even though I hate white cake with white frosting, why can't I seem to ignore it? Why can't I just eat a small piece and get on with my very adult life? Am I defective?

Thing is, I know I'm not alone in my struggles. And, yes, I use the present tense because I continue to struggle with sugar addiction and despite many attempts to cut it out/lessen my consumption/or change my ways, it always comes back to quite literally bite me.

I've thought a lot about the hows and whys of the situation. How I was a thin, small kid. I could eat basically anything I wanted and was still teeny tiny -- my idea of health was quite different. How when puberty hit, I found not-so great ways of dealing with inevitable weight gain, and it's at that point where occasional binges started up.

Now that I know life isn't all about being skinny and food is for health + well being, I still can't get it right. How even with relatively "good" eating habits running has enabled me to indulge a bit more than I might normally . . . and even served as a motivator to eat more.  

(Run 12 miles? Have 10+ cookies!)

I am almost 30 years old (shown eating a veggie Big Mac on the 4th of July) and I'm still trying to figure it out. I've tried the zero sugar plans and failed miserably. I've attempted them again with the same result. I've tried eating moderate amounts and playing that golden rule game. I've attempted to adjust my tastes and enjoy only natural sugars. It all cycles back. I don't know the answer, but I'll keep trying.

This idea of "eating like an adult" -- hmm. I certainly would like to somehow make this switch that should, I guess, be so easy. I know each and every time I falter that I shouldn't be, say, making brownies yet again this week. Or that I should perhaps just stop buying sugar at the store. But is it really this automatic thing I should fundamentally be able to pass up now that I'm older + wiser?

What's your take?

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