Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Monday, March 29, 2010
Friday, March 26, 2010
- feel flawed in every way
- feel less capable
- be more likely to diet (and gain weight,)
- be more likely to engage in disordered eating behaviors
- be less likely to engage in physical activity
Thursday, March 25, 2010
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Here's an interview I did with Healthy and Fit magazine. It has some great bullet point reminders on the Division of Responsibility and getting the power struggles out of feeding.
I recently reached out to Emily Noble after seeing comments she made about kids and eating in the Star Tribune. We had a wonderful chat! Her photos of food are gorgeous. Check out her new project on Leafy Reader for 28 dinners in 28 days. Set your DVR now and watch TV with your kids as she does cool science experiments on PBS Scigirls April 2. (Teaser: kids taste peaches with different things to see which tastes the "peachiest." Was it salt, sugar, vinegar? Tune in!)
Emily is a PhD candidate in nutrition (studying a compound related to appetite and reward,) a chef and blogger who describes her journey to a good relationship with food as a no-regrets “winding candyland path.” As my goal is to help people find that "good relationship" with food, I thought I'd ask Emily to share some of her experiences.
You mentioned you eat now without restriction but that was not always the case.
Emily:I’ve done low-fat, low-carb, no high fructose corn syrup, dairy, and wheat. I have been a strict vegan, vegetarian, and avoided anything "processed". Then I fell in love, which cured me, briefly, of my dietary restrictions. It's funny how dining with new love can turn ice cream into a totally reasonable breakfast item. Shortly after, my partner was diagnosed with an auto-immune disease (ended up being a wrong diagnosis). I worked at a co-op at the time, and heard that raw foods might help.
We lined our cabinets with nut butters, imported young coconuts, and dates. I bought a dehydrator, which sat in the center of our kitchen whining a dull whir, and our countertops disappeared under sprouted nuts and beans. At the coffee shop, we isolated ourselves with decaf teas and raw honey, while our friends enjoyed the animation that comes from a few cups of delicious coffee. They felt like strangers - part of a different world.
After about two months of raw foods, I made a simple salad. I took one bite and tears welled in my eyes. I called a friend and said, 'This salad it the most beautiful and delicious thing that I have ever eaten.
'"Um" she said, "you sound insane. Maybe we should stop raw foods."
In nutrition class, I had learned that the brain up-regulates certain reward pathways when the body is starving to try and encourage feeding. Thus, in a starving state, plain oatmeal (or…salad?) can be as rewarding as chocolate or ice cream. That was my experience with raw foods. We stopped the diet that day, and for the first time in my life I ate unrestricted. I am a lot less obsessed with food when I don't follow rules around it.
How do you think you got started restricting foods in the first place?
Emily: I grew up with an awareness of food as being a really important thing that caused my mother a lot of pain. She would say things like "I wish I didn't love food so much" and I would say "I love food too" "I am afraid that you inherited that from me" she would laugh. I think that I have felt ashamed about how much I loved food in the past.
The messages I received at home about how food is something powerful that needs to be controlled are the same messages from the world at large. As an adult I have come to feel that my love of food is an asset. I have even made a career out of it. My mother has been instrumental in encouraging me about my cooking and writing, which has empowered me to experience food in a whole new way.
Are you happy with how you eat now, and how did you get to that point?
Emily: My relationship with food is a good one these days. I am not mad at my dinner for making me too full or too fat, potentially encouraging some future disease, or isolating me from an exclusive subculture of high-minded eaters. I have no regrets. The different eating styles I have experimented with have strengthened my skills as a chef. I say this because I find it is easy for me to judge my past behavior, but I find it is more useful to acknowledge the gifts that have grown out of it. There really is no right or wrong way to eat, and what is right for me now might not be right for me in the future.
Stay tuned for Part 2 and cooking with kids...
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Remember when I shared that my little one had suddenly gone off drinking milk? That was over four long months ago. It has been a long time of offering yogurt, cooking with evaporated milk and sitting on my hands and biting my tongue while she turned her nose away from milk. I didn't push her (though tempted) knowing that pressure with feeding backfires. I continued to offer it and drank milk with dinner myself most nights, and I'm happy to say she's asking for milk again and enjoying it. It took several months, and patience, and consciously not worrying about her intake day to day but remembering the big picture. And I'd be lying if I didn't admit to being really happy when she chose milk last week.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Monday, March 15, 2010
Here's the quote:
"Food might not be addictive on its own, but prohibiting it can set off a cycle of anxiety, craving, and overconsumption that for all purposes looks like addiction."
Friday, March 12, 2010
I slacked off on my meal-planning this week and found myself at four o'clock after a busy day at work wondering what was for dinner.
Ellyn Satter says in order to be a home cook for the long-haul, you have to let go of the "food snob" mentality. I grew up in a home with a meat, starch, salad, veggie EVERY night. (Mom, I don't know how you did it...) Consequently, I feel like a bit of a failure if I don't do the same. A strange thing then happens. I don't feel like I can put together a balanced, "complete" meal, so we go out, or get take-out, which is likely to be way more expensive and also not likely to be balanced. I saw a similar dynamic when I taught cooking classes for my diabetic patients. They were so wary of adding any fat to their cooking-even a few tablespoons of olive oil to cook some veggies- that they gave up, didn't know what to do and ended up eating out and choosing meals with far higher fat content and less balance.
So, I went to the freezer and pulled out our favorite all-natural beef uncured hot-dogs with whole wheat sandwich buns that we rolled around the dogs. We ate corn and peas (M's favorite) and had some fruit with it all. We do the best we can. We all really like this meal and it was way better than what we would have ordered from the corner diner or take-out.
What are your favorite freezer or pantry meals? Are you a food snob? How do you cook and work or take care of kids every night?
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Bottom line: skip it (the book, not my brilliant review)
Monday, March 8, 2010
Thursday, March 4, 2010
See Martha Stewart's idea for using up that last bit of dijon...
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
In spite of what all the press around Michele Obama's "childhood obesity" campaign might lead you to believe, we are not merely facing a “childhood obesity crisis,” we are facing a crisis in feeding our children.
• teen girls have the worst nutrition of any group in America. 10% have iron deficiency anemia– effecting IQ, attention, energy level, mood
• only one in ten teenagers gets close to the recommended fruit and vegetable intake
• 2 out of 3 teenage girls are dieting
• dieting is a predictor of weight gain and depression and is often a trigger for devastating eating disorders
• even “healthy” dieters are heavier and have more disordered eating than non-dieters
• almost half of teenage girls use extreme dieting measures such as laxative abuse, vomiting or crash fasting
• 20% of kids have “feeding disorders” that impair growth and development (according to Kennedy-Krieger researcher)
• 80% of kids with developmental problems have feeding problems
• there is an increase in diagnoses of eating disorders at ever younger ages
• 80% of "obese" adults were not "obese" as children. Even if you believe that weight on its own predicts health care costs (a point of significant debate,) the current approach of targeting "fat" children will fail to control future costs as it gives today's "normal" and "underweight" kids a pass-and they don't know how to eat either.
We need to address eating and health behaviors for all children.
What do you think?