I haven't really wanted to touch on the topic, but I'm just going to come out and say it: I'm getting fat.
October 3rd marked four months since my knee injury, and I calculate I haven't seriously exercised in about four and a half months.
This aside, I've also been doing tons of research on what we should and should not be eating, but not in terms of fat and caloric intake. Nope, I'm talking about what is best and most natural for our bodies.
Although my weight has become something of a concern for me, what's most important, I've realized, is eating wholesome foods. I've read so many articles and found so much great information (more on this subject in a later post), that I decided I simply couldn't keep eating like I have been.
And how's that? Generally speaking, I used to be a typical eater. I had wacky eating schedules, but aside from that, I ate what I thought was OK for me. I'd have a few servings of veggies per day, but didn't question where they were from or how they were grown. During weightloss periods, I was more concerned with the calories in a dish instead of what chemicals were in it. I didn't care that my pears came from Argentina or that my pasta was from halfway across the globe. One of the only things I had going for me were that I 1) Have never cared for chain restaurants, 2) Am a vegetarian, and 3) I don't like box mixes.
But when I started doing research, I realized that this had to change. I don't want milk with antibiotics and hormones in it (hey, where's it say that on the label?), I am disgusted by the idea that sugar is whitened with animal bones, food loses flavor during long journeys, and what about green tomatoes being injected with ethylene gas to turn red?
I could go on and on about this topic, which has made me passionate about eating more locally, going to the farmers' market, and really THINKING about what's in our food. Because of this, weightloss becomes secondary. Do you really think those Weight Watcher's bars loaded with chemicals are good for you? Mother Nature planned a perfect diet for us, we have just complicated things.
As Josh Viertel, president of Slow Food USA says in his October Unprocessed interview, "My pet peeve is nutrition experts who make the rules complicated. All those questions about fat and calories and protein, they all go right out the window if you just eat real food".
It's been a slow process, one that doesn't take place overnight. I've gradually weaned out more and more processed products (although I didn't eat a huge amount to begin with) and am trying to eat more wholesome foods. Of course, my huge weakness is a giant sweet tooth, but we're working on that too. More importantly, I've learned that if you eat a nutritious, balanced diet, your body will find its natural weight.
Apple ricotta pancakes
Makes about twelve 4-5 inch pancakes
1 cup white whole wheat flour
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
2 large eggs (preferably free range organic)
½ cup milk, plus more for thinning
¼ cup homemade applesauce
9 oz ricotta cheese (store-bought or homemade)
2 tsp local honey
1 large apple, skin on, cored and finely chopped (I used a Cortland apple)
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, and salt until well combined.
In a small mixing bowl, mix together the eggs, milk, applesauce, ricotta, and honey until well combined. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until just mixed in. Add the chopped apple and fold in. The batter will be thick-- add a couple tablespoons of milk to make it thinner, but it will not be a normal pancake batter consistency because of the ricotta.
Heat a griddle or skillet over medium heat and add a little butter to grease the pan. Add a couple large spoonfuls of batter to the skillet. You will have to spread it a little into a roundish shape. Cook for a few minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Serve with local pure maple syrup.