No matter how virtuous my intentions are where it comes to eating better, I always seem to end up at pizza.
Periodically I resolve to eat better. That means less pizza and more green leafy things. I also figure I should eat more than one meal a day. (These all sound like good things, right?)
It sounds so straightforward, but I have failed at eating better in numerous ways.
Method 1: The Healthy Supermarket Trip
I resolve to clean up my diet. No more pies for lunch, eating chips when I get home from work, or muffins when I can’t be bothered making lunch.
The cupboard is basically empty, so a supermarket trip is required.
The old folks behind me at the checkout must think I’m on a health bender: skinless chicken breast, celery, salad greens, onions… (What else do people who are trying to be healthy eat? Perhaps this is my problem.)
I feel so virtuous I’m practically glowing.
There’s no chocolate to tempt me when I get home from work and my willpower is low, no popcorn for those afternoons when lunch wasn’t enough.
I am a diet saint.
Then I get home from work in the afternoon, not having eaten most of the day, and I discover the problem: there’s no chocolate to cheer me up after a tough day, and no buttery popcorn goodness so I can pretend I’m at the movies and forget about the stressful things that followed me home.
Worse, there’s nothing to cook for dinner, unless you count spinach and skinless chicken breast, which I really don’t.
Luckily, modern society has evolved a solution to this most dire problem.
Method 2: I will learn to cook
I’ll be the first to admit my cooking skills are limited (especially when I’m trying to convince you not to invite yourself over for dinner).
Now, I came at some point to the logical conclusion that it’s easier to eat good food if you can cook good food that doesn’t taste and feel like salted rubber.
Thus I decided to learn to cook.
This involved recipe books. Sadly, I discovered there is no direct link between owning a book and being able to cook the recipes it talks about.
They say chemists make good cooks because they’re good at following recipes, and they may well be right. Unfortunately, I’m not a chemist.
The first thing I discover when I open a recipe book is how many ingredients most meals require. (A lot.)
The second thing I discover is that I don’t know what half the ingredients are. (And I seriously think they made some of them up.)
The third thing I discover, thanks to Google, is that the ingredients have different names in New Zealand to wherever the recipe book was written… and they’re out of season anyway. (We live in the modern world. Why can we only get foods in one season?)
The fourth thing I discover is that the items that aren’t out of season only come in 500g packets, while I need a tablespoon and will never use said ingredient again. (It’s a conspiracy.)
The fifth thing I discover (thank you to the wonderful people who know how badly I cook) is that there is such a thing as a book full of 4-ingredient recipes. (Sure, it’s skinny, but you can’t have everything.)
The sixth thing I discover is that nothing worth eating is made of four ingredients. (Bummer.)
Delivery pizza again.
Method 3: Stocking up the freezer
It seems delivery pizza is my standard downfall (and delivery Indian, and delivery fish and chips). If I want to succeed at eating better, I need a plan to combat this devilry.
It’s called eating home-cooked food.
Let’s not be prissy about this. I’m not talking seared salmon or chicken a la anything. Just food I cooked (at least heated up) at home.
The supermarket frozen food section must have seen me coming. I find frozen lasagne, pizzas, pies, sausage rolls, spring rolls, frozen vegetables, hash browns, crumbed fish, battered chicken…
Oven tray + heat. These are things I can cook.
A pie in the oven for 40 minutes is great. I can even have some spinach on the side.
Have your plans for eating better gone spectacularly wrong, or are you one of these people who has her whole life sorted and even wears sunblock?
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