Monday, April 2, 2012

Whole Foods Plant-Based Diet

How does that sound to you? Doesn't roll off your tongue very easily, does it? But if I had to describe myself, that is what I would say is closest to the way I am eating these days. And after this past week I would say I'm more committed to that way of eating than ever before. Let me explain.

For the past five days I've been in Portland in a hotel working on a meeting with my friend. I was really busy before I left so I really didn't have time to make a bunch of great healthy snacks to fill in the holes while my diet was going downhill fast. We stayed and worked at the Nines Hotel in Portland. It's a cool hotel in the heart of downtown Portland. They have two restaurants in the hotel, one named Departure that's Asian Fusion and the other is Urban Farmer. So, my question to you is what type of food would you expect "Urban Farmer" to serve? When you think of a "farmer" don't you think of fresh produce? Or is that just me? Well, so far I've asked four people this same question and we're all in agreement. Yet when we went there for lunch the first day we were there, what was on the menu? Mostly steak and animal protein with very little vegetables. I later looked up how they define themselves and it says "Urban Farmer redefines the modern steakhouse." So apparently urban farming now means meat farming! Ha! The joke's on me I suppose. I mean I know dairy farmers exist but in an urban setting? I don't think so. At any rate we had little extra time to really get out and enjoy the city and find great restaurants. Also my friend is not vegan at all so it's challenging to find restaurants that serve food that I can enjoy and she can too.

So I ate a lot of salads but also a lot of items that aren't really what I'm used to eating anymore. I was never a really big cheese lover. I liked and probably still do like cheese from Spain and also Gruyere is delicious. But generally speaking for me I never did eat a lot of cheese. So although I wasn't eating vegan most of the time I was eating vegetarian. Well, guess what? I'm not much of a vegetarian. I haven't eaten eggs in a long time nor any butter or dairy. And definitely not cheese. So over the week I would end up eating things like that because that's really all that was available. I did have a bag of nuts and some dried fruit to supplement what I was eating. Luckily I had that because otherwise I would have eaten even more food that really wasn't great for me.

My stomach felt bloated almost all the time. My energy wasn't what it normally is and I wasn't sleeping well. Now some of that I attribute to traveling and staying in a hotel. However, my stomach really didn't feel good. And that was the biggest thing for me. So I have decided to really keep doing what I've been doing because I know that I feel so much better eating the way I've been eating. I couldn't wait to come home and eat right for ME! So I've eaten a lot of whole foods today. The more I learn the more I love to eat this way.

It's easy on my body and easy on the environment. So although I would basically categorize my diet (in the true sense of the word - "manner of living") the same as the title of this blogpost: whole foods plant-based, I don't want to pigeonhole myself and say that's all I eat. I think it's important to everyone to eat what they want to eat but to pay attention to how different foods make you feel. If you eat animal protein and you feel great then I say go ahead and eat it. However if you are looking to feel better, try going back to basics.  When I say basics I mean just really anything that is a whole food. I think a great diet for today would be something heavily plant based but still have some meat every once in a while. This frees up some money to buy high quality meat. That's just my opinion. I'm not saying that I wouldn't eat meat but honestly, I probably wouldn't eat meat. So weird for me! Who knew? Particularly because on New Year's Day this year I had such a completely different view of animal protein.

I also continue reading The China Study and other items around the internet about different foods and how they affect you. I guess any reduction in inflammatory foods seems to be the goal. I have kind of made this my goal. Sure I would like to look better than I do but mostly I want to feel amazing so if by changing my eating (and eventually getting my workouts back to something I'm interested in!) I feel amazing and the side effect of THAT is looking better then so be it. But that is truly not my goal for now. I just love finding foods that really enhance my health and it feels good to feel good!

Hope you are all off to a great start for April! I can't wait to get back to my massage school tomorrow. I missed it while I was gone! It has such great energy! In the next couple of weeks I'm going to be getting a new workout plan so I'll let you know how that goes too. And so away we go into the FOURTH month of the year! WOW! Where does the time go?!?


  1. Urban Farmer, too funny! Oh eating out is always ridiculous!

  2. Yes, eating out used to be much easier for me. It's easy in "my" city because I know where everything is and where I like to eat!