Category: weight

Eating as a New Mom

933I’m a mom! My son arrived 7 weeks early and spent a month in the NICU. We brought him home a few days before Christmas and are riding the rollercoaster of parenthood.

The little man loves to eat and isn’t a fan of sleeping – or at least, sleeping without being held. This particular trait is endearing – snuggle bug! But it also makes it challenging to accomplish anything, say, like, prepping or eating food.

My husband is awesome about making ‘real’ meals for dinner, but during the day and after late night feedings, I’m purely snack ‘n grab. This means my eats have included:

  • spoons of peanut butter and hummus
  • bananas
  • cans of green beans and baked beans
  • string cheese
  • Triscuits
  • Cheerios

My mother visited and showed her concern about my lack of balanced diet by adding slices of of butter and extra mayonnaise to everything she prepared for me. It was sweet in that mom way, and also served as a reminder that I need to do a better job of managing healthful eating – for myself, for baby and for successful breastfeeding.

Since her visit, I’ve made a more conscious effort to store leftovers in containers easy to pop in the microwave, stock lunch meats for meat-and-cheese roll-ups, and keep quick proteins like cottage cheese and yogurt on hand. Less butter and mayo necessary.

What other quick, easy and one-handed foods should a new mom consider?

Why I’m Not Skinny

I eat. Yup, there it is. Not novel in my world, but apparently eating is a bit unusual among certain women. Check out this interview with someone famous and skinny (Kelly Wearstler?) in Bon Appetit:

How do you start the day?

Kelly Wearstler, aka “Chewing Is Overrated”

I go to Barry’s Bootcamp at 5:30 a.m., seven days a week. It’s me and a bunch of Hollywood hot-shots. I’ve heard we burn 800 calories per class.

Sounds intense. Do you hydrate?
KW: I drink water mixed with Miracle Reds or Miracle Greens, with drops of plankton. Later in the day, I drink water with lemon, and alkaline water with cayenne extract.

You must be starving after that workout!
KW: Not for a while. After I drop my sons off at school–they still let me walk them into class–I get a double dry nonfat macchiato at Urth Caffé. And for the rest of the day, I juice.

What about real, solid food?
KW: Besides almonds or granola, I don’t eat a lot during the day–juicing is what gives me energy.

As Jezebel aptly captures it, “Although the interviewer tries to engage Wearstler in a conversation about food — since it is, after all, a FOOD MAGAZINE — she declines.  She is not interested in chewing!”

Perhaps chewing is overrated. Too much work. Doesn’t burn enough calories. While filming Batman, Anne Hathaway joked about the unforgiving nature of the catsuit, saying “And right now, I’m, like, living on kale and dust.”

As a woman with curves who struggles with weight, I snort at the mere thought of subsisting on lemon juice and dust motes – with cayenne flakes! I get hungry, people. No, I get ravenous. To help communicate the sincerity of this, I’ve trained my family and significant others to understand my hunger zones in stop light colors:

GREEN ZONE: I’m good to go right now, no hunger pangs. Thumbs up.

YELLOW ZONE: I feel hunger creeping up. I’m still cool but will need to eat within the next hour or so.

RED ZONE: I need food, NOW. Don’t speak to me until we eat. Take me directly to calories. If food takes more than 15 minutes I will dissolve into an angry, grumpy, tummy-aching, headach-y mess.  Ignore the red zone at your peril.

Since we’ve established that eating is in fact a necessity in my world, other options for crazy skinnyness include:
1) Smoking. Gross. It’s expensive, smells bad, is disgusting and will kill you. Plus you look like trailer trash.

2) Diet Pills. I hear that people live on diet pills laced with caffeine. Maybe speed? I tried some weight loss pills for about 3 days in college, which resulted in me feeling nauseous, anxious jittery and with a killer headache to boot. Nope.

3) Eating Disorder. Anorexia is out since ya know, chewing is important to me. And I don’t have 8 hours to spend at the gym each day. Bulimia involves too much horribleness to even contemplate. I like enamel on my teeth.

Which brings me back to the basics of eat less and do more. Or, as Michael Pollan famously summarized in The Omnivore’s Dilemma: Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.