I got this email from my friend Matthew:
He had just read this quote: “When I eat chocolate cake, 20 minutes later I’m under my desk wanting to die, When I eat broccoli, in 20 minutes I feel good. But given the choice I always eat the cake.”
Matthew asks: “Why do people choose the chocolate cake?
“Have I ever talked to you about how Tony Robbins talked about training himself to push his plate away when he was full? He grew up in a home with the ‘doctrine of the clean plate’ (or something like that) and had to retrain himself. The psychology of how to train yourself about what is okay and what is not okay is fascinating to me. (I have taught my kids to waste food anytime they want for example, and that was SO WRONG in the tribe I grew up in.)
“I wonder if you wrote some blogs about how to train yourself and condition yourself to have feelings and opinions about healthy eating that are more useful. How about Affirmations for Health by YOU?”
I told Matthew that I was raised with the same rule: you must finish everything on your plate. I’m developing a meditation to go to the very root of why we sabotage ourselves nutritionally, and correct those subconscious beliefs. (I wrote about this in a blog series months ago called, “I love my body. It serves me well!”)
What are your beliefs about yourself and food, that cause you to make poor choices over and over? What are the words you say in your head? Could you write them on a 3×5 card and think about whether they are useful or harmful?
What if you could write NEW beliefs and statements that you could replace those with, which are more useful? It would work only if you repeated those beliefs over and over.
Do you “make” your kids finish their dinner? At my house, you don’t have to finish anything—except your green smoothie, fruits/vegs, or salad. You can skip the rest of the dinner.
Parents, or anyone with opinions, what do you think? I know it’s no longer popular at all to ‘make’ kids do ANYTHING. But I ‘make’ myself eat 60-80% raw greens/vegs/fruit before I consider eating anything else—so it isn’t as if I’m requiring anything of my kids I’m not doing myself. I have done this for so long that I don’t even think about it. It’s not deprivation or neurotic; it’s just habitual.
I have some rules for eating. All of them are based on common sense. All were developed by learning that I don’t feel good if I ever break them. I’ve never written them down until now; they’ve just been in my head. Here are my 13 rules:
1. Don’t eat after 7 p.m. except on a very rare occasion.
2. Always drink a pint of water as soon as I wake up.
3. Never eat sugar on an empty stomach–always with lots of raw food and some good plant protein (like almonds, greens, or beans).
4. If I eat any concentrated sugar (besides fruit), it’s only once in a day.
5. Never eat processed meat.
6. After working out, drink only water for a while.
7. Every meal or snack is 60% or more raw plant food (often 80-100%).
8. Don’t drink soda.
9. Don’t buy anything from fast-food restaurants.
10. Don’t eat anything with MSG in it.
11. Don’t add salt to food.
12. If a meal is below 80% raw plant food, take digestive enzymes.
13. If I eat too heavily for a weekend or more, I take a few days to detox. I might eat all raw food, two quarts of green smoothie instead of one, wheat grass juice, extra water–or even a couple of days of nothing but Meal Replacement.