Supermarkets would have us believe that variety is being able to walk into a store and buy any and every agricultural product you can think of day in, day out 365 days of the year.
The problem with this is…it becomes boring. Food becomes monotonous (again). The variety of food never seems to change and inspiration can easily fade. This is not the way nature intended. Food variety should be driven by the seasons. This is how we used to eat. We would fill up on produce in season, eat it and bottle in and can it and store it and eat it again to the point where we thought we would never wish to ever eat it again and then the season would turn and a new variety would ripen and the cycle would begin all over again.
In this way food becomes exciting and our meals become invigorating. Our diet is continually changing and we are feasting on foods that suit that time of year and the weather.
Like purple blackberries in autumn, fresh green asparagus and fiery watercress in spring, pumpkins, squash and fennel late summer and the sweet orangey tang of clementines at Christmas.
Last night we noticed this out the window of our back kitchen! All through the winter months it has tended itself and kept hidden only to push through in April to provide a bumper crop for the next weeks. And as we write, the cycle continues.
Shop local, keep to small-scale producers and independent food. Check out your local veg box supplier. In this way you will get back in touch with the seasonal quality of food. The way nature intended!
In May, look out for elderflowers, outdoor rhubarb, asparagus, beetroot, radishes, wild rocket and watercress to season and flavor your foods. In June the season is turning through to summer and you will find blackcurrants, cherries, gooseberries, loganberries, carrots, cucumber and turnips to add to May’s delights.
And keep it real!
So we have seen how willpower is a physical entity and, like a bicep: it can only exert itself for so long before it gives out. It’s an extremely limited mental resource and it’s why diets based on calorie restriction and exercise don’t work. Not convinced: see herehttp://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703478704574612052322122442.html
So what can we do? WE could try this: Shawn Achor (a happiness activist) suggests we cultivate “activation energy”. He states that the key to creating good habits is ritual repeated practice until the actions become ingrained in your brains neural chemistry. And the key to daily practice is to put you desired actions as close to the path of least resistance as possible. Identify the time the choices the mental and physical effort they require and reduce it. This will help channel the will power you have and make it work for you. For example, if coming home after work leaves you with a tired brain make sure you don’t have pizza lying around in the freezer or you will find it in the oven and then in your mouth without thinking. Achor would suggest that we make it easy by having the ingredients ready (chopped up, prepped sitting in a dish together) for you to cook easily and immediately when you come through the door. WE say, better still don’t; buy the pizza in the first place
But you already know this don’t you and if it was this straightforward you would be doing it already. Let’s try a different tack. Paleoworks states that “for a diet to be successful it has to minimise the role of willpower”. How are you going to do that? You are going to eat Paleo and trust that this is different to anything you have done before. Why? Because by removing the processed food, the sugar, the bad carbs, your hormonal response will stabilize allowing your body chemistry to operate freely and cleanly. You will find that your hunger is well and truly under control. What you eat and you are eating freely from good foods including healthy saturated fats will satisfy you. Your hunger will be sated. Get the balance right and you will feel full and complete after your meal and food will not be a constant thought rolling around your head. And I’m talking to those people who finish breakfast with the thought of what’s for lunch who cram are already unwrapping the next chocolate bar while still eating the first and whose every moment is filled with pressure and thoughts from food.
You will not need to rely on will power or distraction or activation energy or any of the arsenal of avoidance techniques created by well-meaning well-paid therapists. Why? Because for the first time in a long time you will be giving your body what it needs when it needs it.
- Willpower: is it working for you? (paleoworks.wordpress.com)
- Energy In and Energy Out (paleoworks.wordpress.com)
- Obesity Wars (paleoworks.wordpress.com)
- Quote of the Day – Michael Pollan (paleoworks.wordpress.com)