In this episode, Dr Orlena talks about how to changing your habits to eat and live more healthily starts with self awareness. Big changes can happen over a period of time. But those big changes start with little changes. And little changes start with the awareness of what you want to change.
Happy New Year! I hope you’ve all had a great holiday and are feeling refreshed and ready to take on 2020!
Isn’t it incredible to think back 10 years? What was your life like then? What changes have you made since then? What amazing journeys have you been on? The good times and the not so good time!
10 years ago I was living in Wales. I was working as a pediatric doctor. I had 1 son.
Now I live in Spain (we’ve moved several times since then!) I have 4 kids and am growing a business. So many changes that I didn’t expect.
How would you like your life to be in 10 years time? My wish for you is that you’re living a healthy, amazing life that you love. You’re full of energy and feel fantastic!
Just before Christmas, I was lucky enough to win a competition. Hooray! I won some children’s activity books. One was “baking with kids”.
When I flicked through the book I was a little taken back by the amount of sugar in all the cakes. (I’ve perfected the art of making cakes out of vegetables! My youngest son calls my aubergine cake “mummy’s yummy chocolate cake.” I have to confess I don’t usually make treats. We generally don’t eat them. Except of course, over the holidays. And ice cream during the summer. See how easily they creep in??)
Ignoring my palpitations, I decided to put it in his stocking anyway. He was thrilled and loved looking at all the delicious cakes.
Then he decided he was going to make one.
I’m all for kids cooking. Even if from time to time it means cooking foods that we don’t normally eat. If you have the rule that you have to cook treats, you’re going to eat far less than if you buy them.
Still. That cake had a lot of sugar, flour and butter in.
It’s strange that my brain knows that sugar and flour are pretty much the same thing from the neck down. I still “worry” about sugar more than flour.
I guess years of conditioning that “flour is OK” for you is hard to change. (I remember learning at school that bread is broken down into sugar in our mouths by an enzyme called salivary amylase. I guess I wasn’t thinking much about nutrition and healthy eating in those days.)
I won’t describe the kitchen after he’d finish. But I will tell you that he used an entire packet of sugar and butter. (The only ones we have. Normally they last for weeks.)
The cake was delicious. (Although most of us didn’t feel it was a billion times better than “mummy’s yummy chocolate cake”. The cake with aubergines and very little sugar! Is all that sugar and flour really as delicious as we think?)
There was also a crunchy texture to the butter icing (he’d used granulated sugar instead of icing sugar.)
Each crunchy mouthful reminded me how much sugar was in it.
Guilt. I brushed away the guilt. After all. Why bother eating cake if you’re not going to actually enjoy it? Dive right in and relish the experience.
Letting kids cook cakes is a great way to teach them exactly how much sugar goes into food.
It’s also a great reminder for us!
Although my brain “knows” that treats and cakes have lots of sugar and flour, it’s a great visual reminder. Especially when I have to go and buy another packet of sugar!
It’s so easy to pick up a packet of pre made cakes or biscuits and pretend that they don’t contain so much sugar.
When we know they do.
We’ve just finished the Xmas holidays and have eaten far more treats than normal. I’ve been busy ignoring how much sugar and flour is in all of them.
Making changes starts with becoming aware of the habit that we’re in.
For me, it’s a good reminder that these treats have slipped in. (Just yesterday my husband came back from the shop with some little donut cakes. He didn’t even have Xmas as an excuse. “The kids like them!” he said. Yes of course they do! And so do I. And so does he!)
I invite you to have a look at what you’re eating with some “open eyes”.
You don’t need to judge yourself, or beat yourself up. Just be honest with yourself and have a think about what you can change.
I also invite you to join my short and sweet challenge. We’ll be having a look at all those thoughts that stop you from making changes. Thoughts like “I can’t do it!”
We’ll dig them out and then blast them away!
Just 10 mins a day for 5 days.
Find out more here: New Me Challenge
Dr Orlena is a health coach. She helps busy mums go from "I can't lose weight" to feeling fit and fabulous. Find out more about her here.