My Personal Challenge to Read Before I Eat

Try-It With-Me Tuesday, an interactive weekly time and place to foster connections that challenge and encourage the process to become a well-rounded person.

Today is the day to report progress and results for the June Reading Challenge and the other Try It With Me Tuesday Challenges for the month. They included:

  1. Read food labels this month to be more aware of servings size and nutritional value.
  2. Write down everything you eat for one week.
  3. Eat at least 5 fruits and vegetables per day for one week.

Did you try them with me? If so, leave a comment below about the one(s) you tried and tell me how it changed your eating habits. If you would like to write a post on your own website about what you did, you can include your link in the comments or send it to me, and I will publish it for you.

Read food labels this month to be more aware of serving size and nutritional value.

This part of the challenge educated me. I was in denial about how much and what I actually eat. My awareness prompted me to seek out new foods and foods I used to eat but gave up to accommodate family eating plans. Keeping an eye on nutrition facts also changed what I ate when eating out. During the week that I was on vacation I discovered smaller a la carte items like wraps with veggies to replace “the meal” or “basket” options on the menu. Ironically, reading toward better eating showed me that the foods I need most are those that are not pre-packaged with easy labels but whole foods that don’t come in a box.

Write down everything I eat for one week.

Keeping a food journal for one week and then recording my servings of fruits and vegetables the following week steered me toward proper serving sizes and amounts. Recording held me accountable to myself. I also identified the patterns of why I eat. For instance, the weekend days of Friday, Saturday, and Sunday needed a whole note page to themselves, rather than just the half pages for Monday-Thursday.

I must be a social eater. Peer influence, especially in a family, to change what you eat is tough. However, my children decided to modify our butter usage and change to Smart Balance. And I let everyone know that I am eating for me, now, and not for them. Consequently the important change I have made is to eat when I am hungry.

Eat at least 5 fruits and vegetables per day for one week.

I needed this “requirement” on myself to eat better foods, not just cut out junk foods, as the last challenge of the month. It was the one that most changed what I eat. It was easier because my children used the worksheets I printed from Dole’s website and tried this challenge with me.

We drastically changed what we ate, especially by choosing fruits and vegetables for our snacks over crackers or packaged snacks.

Thanks to a comment from my friend Alison about V8 Fusion, I started drinking V8 juice again, which I love, but stopped buying because no one drank it but me. My current afternoon snack is now a serving of V8 juice, which is an easy way to get 2 servings of vegetables.

Well, my goals this month have been mostly to receive a healthy education and motivation to eat better than ever. In the past I have reduced my food intake but never started with a shift in lifestyle thinking. That’s what I needed after fifteen years of shopping and cooking for the needs of a family. This has been about changing my meal-planning and shopping and cooking habits as much as anything. Fortunately, I do feel the support of my children and my husband and that’s going to make the biggest difference for me in long-term success.

Join in by trying the challenges with me, commenting, linking, or suggesting a challenge. If you want to write a post on your blog about what happened when you took the challenge, I will publish your link. Just link to my website in your post and send me your link. Feel free to use the TIWMT image in your post.

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