My journey with leading a healthy life started in 2006. People I have recently met can't believe the food choices I used to make. Eating junk food for three meals a day was not uncommon. I remember weekend days that started with breakfast at Perkins or Dunkin Donuts, a couple slices of food court pizza with an Auntie Anne's pretzel and slushie for lunch, wrapped up by dinner at Applebees. I was young, in love, enjoyed eating out, and quickly packed on the pounds. In January of 2006, I got my latest issue of SELF Magazine and saw an article about the SELF Challenge. It promised weight loss in three months, and offered a variety of easy meal plans and exercises. I couldn't cook at all- most of the foods I did prepare at home came out of a box. I knew that I had 4 months until my wedding, and I didn't want to look at my photos year after year and and feel bad about myself. I thought- it's just 3 months, I can do this.
I prepared the SELF Challenge meals and did the workouts exactly as prescribed, and slowly saw the pounds melting away. I ended up losing about 15 pounds before my wedding. I noticed that not only did I look better, but I felt so much better too! I have IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), and I found that eating healthy meant I had fewer flare-up days. This new healthy lifestyle routine seemed like a path I wanted to continue to follow.
Over the years, I learned to love preparing food for myself and my husband at home. I try to stay away from high fructose corn syrup, sodium-laden foods, and anything fake I can't pronounce. I follow a "flexitarian" diet, eating meat only occasionally. I still like to go out to eat- I believe in balance and think that eating one restaurant meal every week or two is fine! I also have a serious sweet tooth and eat dessert every night. It is important to note that I do not have any formal nutrition training, the recipes & foods highlighted on this site are foods I enjoy and work well for me.