A little story about a decision I made...

16 June 2012

I have made a bit of a conscious decision to eat more healthily....to cut out the highly processed foods... to limit sugar to a minimum.....and even to reduce my coffee intake.
In fact this week I only had 3 coffees in the entire week..... a huge step down from my 3 coffees minimum a day.

The reason for this decision was based solely on how I have been feeling of late....which in one word would be terrible.

So I've played this over and over in my head.... what went wrong?..... I had been feeling so incredibly fit....healthy and energised.... how could I now be feeling so bloated...aching and horrible in a few short months. I was still eating reasonably healthy meals.....and I am still getting in 5 exercise sessions a week....both at the gym and my morning runs.....so what had changed?

Initially I blamed a food intolerance.....I thought maybe I developed an intolerance after cutting out most of the carbs and dairy while I was on the 12wbt program.
In my head that made sense.....I had felt amazing while I was on the program.....and it was only once I finished and reintroduced some of my 'old habit' foods that I started to notice the change.

So I decided to be more aware of what I ate.....and how I felt..... I cut out some of the foods I believed were offenders....but in all honesty it didn't make a lot of difference....and my testing was lacking any formality....so at the end of it it was inconclusive.

I started cooking from basics again.....I  scoured healthy food blogs ....and realised I loved their ideals...and loved that they were so passionate about cooking food from scratch..... steering clear of all the processed nasties. The other upside of this epiphany is that it ignited a passion for cooking....something I had never had before. I love packing my lunch ...or creating a meal knowing that every mouthful is packed with nutrition and when the family enjoy it too....that makes me even happier.

But I was still feeling unwell....and like something wasn't quite right....that longed for feeling of wellness hadn't returned.... and why?

I was sitting watching 60 minutes when the story came on about sugar.....and how Sarah Wilson had written an e-book about "How I Quit Sugar"....and a little bell rang in my head.
,I had already been following "I quit sugar" feed on Facebook...but had never actually stopped and thought about the connection between this and me!
I realised that although I thought it was a brilliant idea....Id actually never thought about doing it myself.

So  I turned the spotlight on myself.... first up I thought.... well really I don't eat a lot of sugar....I don't have it in my drinks.....I don't drink soft drink... and so on....
but then I had to admit that I had slowly gotten myself  back on the sugar / chocolate treadmill....
craving...eating....regretting...and so on....as the cycle goes.
I also realised that sugar was more than likely hidden in a lot of foods I had been eating....and before long
I started to think that hey....maybe this is more of a problem than I had originally thought.

So....then and there....and I mean literally....as I was eating a piece of my favourite caramel slice at the time...which I didn't even finish... I made the decision to be more conscious about the sugars I eat....
I don't feel I can commit to cutting them out entirely....but I can choose how much I have....and in what.

So.... I bought Sarahs books....and I read....
and I searched more blogs....
and I sifted out what I thought would work for me.....and what wouldn't...
and got started.

So far....one week is down and I haven't craved a thing....
I feel a little less bloated.....and possibly a teeny bit healthier...
I am back to loving the taste of foods.... relishing my meals.... and enjoying the discovery of new ways to cook and sweeten without sugar (and I am a long term campaigner for no artificial sweeteners ...colourings or additives....so you can be sure Ill never substitute with any of them)

I actually believe that I might be onto something...
I want to put it out there now though......its very possible you will see me indulge in the occasional cake or dessert....I don't feel ready to restrict my life to the point that I cant partake in something if I wish too....but as far as the every day.....I think for now....I can live without it.

So this week I enjoyed....
Quinoa with dates and toasted seeds....warm milk.... delicious breakfast.

...and these oats and date scones....
adapted from this recipe by Teresa Cutter....
I swapped the spelt for wholemeal wheat.....and the honey for rice bran syrup as Briony doesn't eat honey.
They were crumbly.....but a hit with the entire family....

Today I have prepared some meals for the week ahead...
a cauliflower soup...
a vegetable quiche...
homemade white bean hummus
a pear... pomegranate and parmesan salad..
some brushetta mix to pop on toast.
and some delcious crunchy granola for breakfasts and snacks.
Yum..... my lunchbox for work tomorrow will be delicious.

If you are at all interested ... 
I have been adding the links to my favourite foodie blogs to a list on my blog.
(scroll right to the bottom)
Im sure that list will grow as I stumble across more...
Have a wonderful week...


  1. Hi Mardi,
    I read your post with my mouth wide open thinking that this is identical to what I have been saying to my Hubby this week, I have been also searching and searching for something to give me that healthy up and go that I have in the past had and refuse to give age the benefit of being guilty of striping that from me.

    I puchased a thermomix a few weeks back and had it delivered on Thursday morning and I have been loving it, made my own veggie stock, butter etc and the thing I love the most is I can now control everything I put into my families mouth and time poor can never be the excuse as it is so fast.

    I have also been to the markets this morning sourcing fresh and have found a couple of Ladies who have a local business selling less processed and better choices of seeds and grains.

    Good luck with your new nutrition venture, I am also kicking butt to my families addiction to sugar, Zaylan is going to his specialist soon with a recommendation from school that he has ADD, I am hoping that by making changes in our diet we will be able to see some results for him.

    Real Healthy kids is another great site, even though she focuses on kids health I think it applies to us all and I love her recipes, very old school cooking and super nutritious and her book has amazing recipes in it. Sally Gray is her name.

    Take care, Tracey. x

  2. Oh Mardi, you HAVE to get Lee Holmes her book "supercharged" (I have it as an ebook), check out her website too, she is totally awesome!!!!! (http://www.superchargedfood.com/) Enjoy :)

    Manon xx

  3. Anonymous6:25 am

    Thanks for some motivation, lots of things to think about..can I ask for your recipe for chicken and veggie soup from a few days back. Keep up the good work.

  4. Wow Mardi!
    I hope you feel a difference soon. Such an interesting idea. xx

  5. well done to you...i need to cut back my sugar too and have been using ground almonds as a replacement on my weetbix each morning instead of sugar but its the chocolate i need to give up :(

  6. Fabulous post Mardi... and so inspiring... thank you for sharing the links... will definitely check them out... I have been hearing a lot about Quinoa lately... so was interested to see it here on your blog also... your scones look wonderful...as do the list of foods that you have prepared so far... they sound delicious... reducing my sugar/chocolate intake is something I would love to do too... please keep us posted with how it is going...

    Jenny x

  7. Hey, great to read this post Mardi. It has made me think about some things to cut out ... starting maybe with soft drink ... I'll see how I go :-)

  8. Shall I dare tell you what I have eaten today Mardi...
    coffee 8am
    banana cake and coffee 10am
    lollies 12pm
    coffee frappe at maccas 1.30pm
    chocolate bar 3.30pm
    quiche 7pm
    coffee 8.30pm

    You should be so proud of your ongoing commitment to your health Mardi. I hope you feel fantastic for it:)

  9. So lovely to read about your decision, good for you Mardi!! I don't drink soft drink, unless I am having a scotch, which is once a month or so, but I do drink coffee... I have one sugar in it, but if it's a 'proper' coffee, I have none, thanks to going to Tatum's in Roxby for coffee, she had none, so I got none!! LOL! Does taste better... I am going to try to remember to leave out my sugar in the morning... Looking forward to reading more about how you go!! xx