...when you've fallen off it in quite a spectacular way. I'm writing this for myself as much I am for you because, in the spirit of full disclosure, I have recently fallen off said wagon and I am in the process of climbing back on to it. I say climb, it's more of a hoik.
So what's happened?, I hear you cry! You are The Fairy Food Mother, our shining beacon of glowing health, here to guide us on the path of greatness, one green smoothie at a time! Yes, 'tis true. I am she. However, I am also a human person, with flaws and weaknesses (HUH?!), stress and overwhelm, and absolutely zero willpower when it comes to Easter eggs.
These delectable, oval mouthfuls of chocolatey munchiness have been my complete downfall over the last 3 weeks and have tantalisingly tempted me straight back on to the sugar train which has left me feeling fatigued, fat and fed up. Despite knowing that this continuous excess was doing me no good, I just could not seem to stop myself. The combination of having the bloody things in the house and the drudge of the endless school holidays was a lethal one.
You see, I just can't afford to have almost a whole month of slip-ups. It's not just the sugar that became a problem, but other junk food too. Crisps, processed gluten-free products (gluten-free does not equal healthy!), carbs, carbs and more carbs. You may have read my blog post about my autoimmune thyroid disease: slipping up involves a whole cascade of health issues for me as all of your hormones are so intricately linked. Failing to control your blood sugar leads to increased stress which in turn suppresses the immune system and the thyroid, as well as reproductive hormones. Plus there's a whole heap of inflammation going on here too.
Cue uncontrollable sugar cravings, yet another cough, extreme tiredness, mood swings and hey, just for shizzles, raging PMS. Oh, I've been a barrel of giggles this month. My poor, poor husband. (sorry, darling)
So enough is enough. I know what I need to do to get myself back on track, get back on the health wagon and start feeling good again. I needed a big old kick up the bum by this Fairy Food Mother woman.
I've been straight back into the Nutribullet smoothies focusing on vegetables and low-GI fruit. My favourite recipe at the moment is:
1 stick of celery
1 large chunk of cucumber
1/2 an avocado
1 tbsp chia seeds
1cm slice of unwaxed lemon, unpeeled
1 slice of fresh ginger
Unsweetened almond milk
I've made some nourishing bone broth. This is something I try to do every week or so as I find it really grounding and it's fabulous for reducing inflammation and healing the gut (autoimmune diseases stem predominantly from a leaky gut - I've been fixing mine for years). Simply roast a whole organic chicken (I ate this - not the whole thing! - for dinner with some roasted sweet potatoes and steamed kale) and store any leftover chicken. Throw the carcass into your slow cooker, cover with water and cook on low overnight. The next day, strain the liquid and use this as a base for soups or stews, or simply as a hot drink. I made myself a broth with leftover chicken, sliced mushrooms and kale for lunch, and I'm planning to use the rest in a lamb stew. You can store cooled bone broth in the fridge in an airtight glass jar for up to a week, or it can be frozen.
I'm focusing on good quality proteins, fats and vegetables. The sugar's gone, the grains have gone. I know how I much better I feel physically and emotionally when these foods are not in my life.
So there you have it. Proof that even nutritionists slip up. What you see on food blogs and Instagram isn't real life - don't let these images of perfection make you feel imperfect. Every human person has a human story and behind every beautifully shot Chia Smoothie Bowl is a half-eaten bag of Maltesers!! ;))
I'm looking forward to feeling much, much better in about a week once I've cleared out all the crap and my body is thanking me for the nourishment.