It’s time for my first food confession of the year… and while my battle over breakfast continues – although I am glad to report that I am getting better, and so far this year I have been back at work for a week and I have had a good breakfast everyday… but summer has challenged me on another life long bad habit…
Em’s Bad Food Habit no. 2
I really don’t like eating salad… I love vegetables – in fact I can’t think of a single cooked vegetable that I don’t enjoy… but when it comes to fresh salad… I just struggle… really really struggle… It’s always been like this… even in summer when I was younger, my brothers and I would always go for some cooked veg over salad… despite the fact that a salad would have been much more refreshing. As I have gotten older there have been numerous occasions when I have eaten salad because I was being watched, or I was at someones house or I didn’t want to be a bad example, but at home… I still avoid it.
When it comes to getting my 5 veggies, not eating salad isn’t that big a deal, but I know that if I am going to practice what I preach… I am going to have to start eating my fresh greens. (as a side note Dave loves salads, so learning to eat them would also make family meals over summer much more enjoyable for Davo.)
There is no reason I don’t eat them, they just don’t get me excited like roasted veggies do… the thought of sitting down to a salad makes me feel like I am missing out on something better, something more satisfying, something tasty. But the truth is a salad can be all of those things… I just need to get creative.
So why is salad so important?
Well… it’s not really salad… it’s vegetables and if I am really honest over summer, while I would happily eat hot vegetables everyday, I often don’t want to cook them in the heat, especially in the weather we have had this week… I don’t want to be cooking anything… so I just skip them… which is not ideal… so salad needs to become the way I get my 5 veg in the warmer weather. And why do we need to get our 5 veg? Well let me tell you…
Veggies are nutrient dense – that is they are packed full of nutritious vitamins and minerals without all the extra calories. They give us just what we need and very little of what we don’t. Different veggies have different vitamins and minerals so the best way to make sure you are getting what you need is to eat a variety different types and colour veggies.
Veggies are also high in fibre – they keep us regular and help our bodies get rid of waste as efficiently as possible.
Just like a regular breakfast, getting adequate amounts of vegetables has no downside… it helps maintain a healthy weight, assists with waste disposal and provides us with exactly what we need. The key with vegetables is variety… lots of different colours and types, as they all offer slightly different things, but if you are including a little bit of all of them regularly you can’t go wrong. It doesn’t have to be fancy, it just has to be there.
The reality is I need to embrace salads, not the creamy ones filled with pasta, potato and rice, but the salad salads, filled with salad greens and what not. I need to practice what I preach and if I can’t have cooked veg, or I can’t be bothered cooking veg, then I have to go with salad… it’s not a meal if it doesn’t have vegetables. (In fact a good rule of thumb is to make sure half the plate at lunch and dinner is non-starchy vegetables, that is… everything except potato and corn). I need to take some of my own advice and give it a go, try a few different salads, play around with different combos and maybe even through some fruit and cheese in there to spice it up, but not too much or it’ll be missing the whole point.
I am not really sure how I will measure this… but it is something that needs to be done… I have to be committed and give it a go… in fact the picture above is dinner from Monday night… my first attempt at a friends dressed Greek Salad recipe… maybe I can post some more pictures and some salad recipes of the favourites I find along the way… but most importantly I need to practice what I preach… walk the talk… eat my salad… and be better for it…