A thirty day Sabbatical. Thirty days of travel to the West Coast and on to New Zealand and Australia with a little time in L.A. on the way back.
Thirty days with three meals a day out = ninety squares plus coffees, snacks and desserts. As a home cook, and a little bit of a homebody, I was skeptical- could I do it? In the past, even a five day vacation had left me wanting oatmeal in my own kitchen. But that was usually in the U.S. This time here is what saved me…portion size!
I was immediately reminded of the two years our family spent in Tokyo. A city where the smallest people get a coffee, a sandwich,and a dessert at Starbucks. Then they walk, eat small portions of salads, fish, and anything else they want to try. It is this way everywhere in the world but the good old USA. We just eat too much food.Our portions are crazy & ridiculous.It’s embarrassing to defend. I say this because if you have traveled to another country, you know that strangers from other countries love to mention it.
One of the best weight loss programs I know of starts with food measurement. It’s an eye opener to learn just how much we’ve gotten used to. We classify our foods as “good” and “bad” and plan portions accordingly. We agonize about overeating. And then we serve portions that we overeat. Unfortunately, it is then that we go to no food. Are juices and shakes dinner? Is that what our children will do?
I remember ordering a beautiful seafood stew at a local restaurant on a first trip back from Japan. My meal was enough for our entire table. How much happier and lighter we all would have felt if we had shared. In New Zealand my Kiwi friends delighted in beautiful foods eaten in small portions. We, in turn, were treated to so many different tastes and treats because of the lack of obsession on their part. I wanted to scream out loud to my country – Free yourself and go small !
We restrict foods because we can’t handle them. How often have you said “I don’t keep (fill in the blank) in the house- I’d eat the whole box!” Have you asked yourself “Why?”. Why are we afraid of our foods? I want to be calm about food – and we can. Eat a variety of real foods that will satisfy you. Love what you eat. Love yourself.
It’s not hard to eat beautifully around the world. Maybe the next American food movement should be to be a culture that eats what it hungers for. And leaves it at that.
G & I came back relaxed, fit, and a little lighter. 30 days. Awesome.