Eating on Special Occasions

Staying on track in the face of temptation

kalimah bioBy Kalimah Johnson

April 2013 — I love food! I admit this reluctantly with a hint of guilt looming around my mind, body, and spirit because I am also very concerned about my type 2 diabetes. Food, and the overindulgence of it, contributed to my type 2 diagnosis in the first place over 15 years ago Admitting this amorous truth has motivated me to find better ways. As I am writing this installment, it is Easter Sunday, and today I have viewed enough Facebook pictures, Instagram installations, and tweets related to treats, meats, sweets, beets, cheese, spreads, and breads! Every upload explodes with vibrant colors and textures! I find that on days like this I must be diligent and focused, determined and fervent towards eating what will satisfy me and also be friendly with my diagnosis. On days like this it is nearly impossible to maintain healthy eating habits with peach cobblers, pans of macaroni and cheese, pots of fat back collard greens, and pork chops running amuck! My love of food might have made this day a disaster, but I am calling the deviled egg monster a liar today!

I suppose that part of recognizing any addiction is to be brutally honest about it and then share it with the world! So, I will proclaim it again, I LOVE EATING, TASTING, SMELLING, PREPARING, and SHARING food! I love food of all types; baked, fried, sautéed, grilled, sweet, sour, salty, spicy, flavorful food! A carbohydrate can lure my lips and beckon me to bite, chew, and swallow, wishing that the calories and glycemic index just won't count this time around. However, this is unrealistic. It does count. One great thing about Easter Sunday is the demarcation of winter and the deliverance of spring with warmer weather. The change in temperature can provide us with the opportunity to partake in more cool, refreshing dishes such as salads, fruits, and vegetables, and will hopefully encourage us to drink more fluids. The welcomed change of the weather and the blessing of blossoms keep me excited about my food choices.

So today, I decided to stay home and away from all of the indulgence. It was hard to be away from my friends and family, but I had to put my health and well-being first and admit that my addiction to all kinds of food would get me into trouble! So today, I started with breakfast — I had two turkey sausage patties and a cup of oatmeal sprinkled with one pack of Splenda, a teaspoon of raisins, and a tablespoon of pecans. For lunch I had a slice of fat free cheese and 12 wheat thins. I went to an Ethiopian restaurant (The Blue Nile) for dinner with my partner and together we ate baked chicken, greens, cabbage, lentils, and injera (yeast-risen flat bread with a unique spongy texture and a low glycemic index), all prepared with olive oil. Because of my bariatric surgery, I must eat in smaller portions. Therefore, we shared one dinner (portion sizes at restaurants tend to be large enough for two anyway). The key to this meal was that I had the opportunity to skip the fat, greasey, fried, gravy. and thick, heavy, sugary, calorie-packed dinner served up by all of my loved ones today. For dessert we had a delicious cup of sorbet — the entire dinner was enjoyable and quite filling!

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Last Modified Date: June 10, 2013

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by Nicole Purcell
I am body dysmorphic. Since my teens, I have had what has been diagnosed as a distorted view of my weight, shape, and size. It is challenging, and it really does make living with diabetes even more difficult. For three days, in spite of no changes in a regimented eating and exercise routine, I have felt gigantic. I can barely look in the mirror because I don't like what I see. I feel as if I have tons of fat beneath my skin, just pulsing against the pores. I feel like...