My Food History (Why it’s not all health food)

April 27, 2008 at 12:27 pm 4 comments

I am a child of the late 1960’s. Shortly after the Woodstock festival, we began to spend a lot of time in the town of Woodstock, and my mother discovered the health food store there.

It didn’t take long before our sweet breakfast cereals were replaced with granola, and the candy bars became sesame treats. We had a large garden, so vegetables were always a main staple. My mother was an excellent cook. It wasn’t until after the divorce when she started working that we discovered canned foods.

She has a tendency to be extreme, which I resented. So, when I got healthy, there was one thing I was sure about: I was not going to be extreme. My food would be middle-of-the-road, a little of this, a little of that. That’s exactly how it is.

Now that I’m older and understand more about nutrition, I appreciate my mother’s knowledge and am trying to improve our diet. Just gradually, so they barely notice it. I believe it is important to take care of myself, but I am not willing to go to such an extreme that I eat something just because it’s healthy, and deny myself something just because it’s unhealthy. My motto is: Everything in moderation. I know that sounds kind of boring and reasonable, but it’s not. It means I can have everything!!! (Just not in mass quantities!) In heart, I am a hedonist. I believe that my enjoyment is of equal importance as the nutritional value.

My daughter has a nickel allergy, and has a rash on her stomach from a belt buckle. She was complaining about it, and I mentioned it to my mother, who immediately made some nutritional suggestions. I welcome the opportunity as a chance for change. My daughter’s wish for nice clear skin makes her willing to eat better, so we are working on that. (She’s willing to eat less white bread and more whole wheat.) I prefer the approach of working with food to feel good as well as to support health, rather than food being an enemy I have to cope with. I also found a place that sells nickel-free belt buckles, and she actually found two that she likes!

Over the years, my mother and I have had some heated discussions about the pros and cons of various approaches to eating. At this point, I’m not so concerned about whether or not one of us is right. I still consider her approach extreme, but I am willing to take her advice on some things. For me it’s very important that I feel good and comfortable about how I eat. Just as eating disorders are about more than the food, so is healthy eating!


Entry filed under: About Recovery, children, eating habits and food, nickel allergy. Tags: , , , , , , .

20 Years of Wondering: a different kind of journal excerpt time for a change

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Lawren Smith  |  May 2, 2008 at 1:41 am

    After college, I have been in constant battle with my weight. I am 5’8.5″ tall and I used to weigh over 200 pounds. I had severe back problems and my blood pressure was slowly climbing up. Most of the members in my family have diabetes.

    About 8 years ago, I put myself on a diet and started exercising. I have since lost 50 pounds and have managed to keep it off. I still work out 6 days a week. I run 4 to 5 miles 6 days a week. I no longer suffer from back pain.

    I have also changed the foods that I eat. Although I don’t eat completely healthy, I am eating much better and it has helped me.

    I see you have a success story of your own. You apparently have overcome your eating disorder. I admire you for that. I know it was not easy.

  • 2. diaryofarecoveredbulimic  |  May 2, 2008 at 7:40 am

    Thanks for your note! It doesn’t all have to be super healthy, it just has to work! And it sounds like you’ve found a good way to go. Congratulations!
    I think one of the biggest obstacles can be perfect expectations about diet. When we just let go and are willing to be “good-enough” eaters, it becomes more manageable. Every little bit helps!

  • 3. Tara  |  September 19, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    I very much enjoyed your story and found it online because I was just diagnosed with an extreme nickel allergy this week. I had to make a comment though. In one part of your story you mentioned that your daughter was willing to eat a better diet so that her dermatitus would improve, which is great, but you said that she was willing to eat less white bread and more wheat. As far as everything I know and have researched, whole wheat flower is one of the worst things you can do with this allergy. Avoid all wheat containing products period! No bread, no flour, no whole wheat cereals. No wheat at all. Anyway, hope she gets better. I really like your site here too.

    • 4. diaryofarecoveredbulimic  |  September 19, 2009 at 10:00 pm

      Thanks so much for the info! I just assumed whole wheat was good. So much for that! I wish you all the best in dealing with your allergy.


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