Tuesday, January 4, 2011


One of the things I'm trying to consider in this next step on the journey (you know, the step where I try to re-lose weight I've already lost), is what my idea of a "meal" is.

I grew up in a relatively traditional non-traditional home. My parents divorced when I was very young and my brother and I had to fend for ourselves in terms of what to eat for what meal. Not that my parents weren't providing food; they certainly were. More than enough of it. My mom would even make dinner in the very few hours she had to sleep between 18 hour shifts so that we'd just be able to pop it in the microwave.

Far too often we chose to eat whole boxes of cereal out of salad bowls.

Even more often we'd forgo any "real" food in favor of chocolate cake.

But when we did sit down to eat as a family, it was a protein, a vegetable and 1-2 starches. Always. That is my idea of a meal.

I always feel that I have to construct things that way, if I'm going to "sit down and eat." However, I'm also accustomed to just grabbing whatever is convenient and tasty and what I want right now. Needless to say, it's difficult for me, now as a single person (or at least solo apartment dweller) to figure it out.

I've been trying to overhaul my idea of a meal. Lunch doesn't have to be a sandwich and a salad, or leftovers, or a Lean Cuisine. It could be a small bowl of cottage cheese and an orange. In my head that sounds like a snack, but in reality, it could be lunch.

I'm babbling, but I know other people feel this way too.

Yesterday, I had a small clementine and some almonds for breakfast where I'd normally eat a bowl of oatmeal or some cereal. It was a welcome change because I'm not so much a fan of breakfast in general. I'm not hungry in the morning and I don't want food to stick to my ribs. I chose to eat "snack food" as a "meal" and it felt great.

Last night for dinner I also wasn't' much in the mood for a "meal" and I had a small bowl of quinoa salad and an apple.

I realize, of course, that there are many "diets" where you're encouraged to just eat 5 small meals a day. Meals like these "meals," but this is all new to me.

Do you ever run into this?


Tiffany said...

I understand completely! Kinda goes along with eating when hungry and stopping when full (instead of eating at a certain time or cleaning the plate even if your full). I struggle with the "traditional", being a mom and cooking for a family. My kids are "snackers", they eat lots of small meals through out the day (drives my husband crazy cause he says they are always eating)...only thing, they are healthy and skinny!
Do what works for you...

Girly Girl: Losing the Gut said...

I grew up eating the same meat, straches and vegetables, so I know how you feel.

In the past 3 months I have been eating a decent lunch, a small snack, a decent lunch, a snack and a smaller dinner. I have found that it really helps me curb cravings and has helped me lose more weight than any other method I have tried. Having said that, I also agree with Tiffany that everyone should do what works best for them. If you have found a method that works for you, that is great!

Ann said...

Check out Hungry Girl's cookbook. Lots of awesome low-calorie ideas, especially those non-traditional "meal"ideas. As long as it works for you, great job!!!

Lee said...

I know exactly what you mean. I'm fine with considering a meal as what others would label as a snack. But, my husband is fixed on the traditional concept of a meal, especially dinner. So, when he's away, I look forward to having things for dinner that would just freak him out.