by Alanna Fincke
2 crust pieces from whole wheat buttered bagel
3 sections orange
4 bites soggy Grapenuts
3 spoonfuls yogurt
That was my breakfast this morning. I’ve got to admit that it seems I'm almost physically unable to throw out perfectly good food. So, lately I’ve fallen into the lousy habit of making a meal out of what my kids leave over on their plates. I call it The Table-Scrap Diet. Mornings are prime for table-scrap dieting. In our time-crunched routine, gobbling their leftovers while I make their lunches or multi-task any number of things is fast and easy. I feed my kids healthy food, so I’m nibbling on lots of nutritious bits, but eating the scraps of what falls of my children’s plates does not a healthy diet make.
As the editor of body + soul, a magazine about healthy living and a real practitioner of wellness myself, this imperfect habit—born out of a mixture of laziness and busyness—must go. I know I need to take the time to feed myself a meal, no matter how hectic things get. After all, I want to start my day feeling strong and energized. And I no longer want to fall back on the full-time-working-mom-doing-the-juggle excuse as a reason to not take care of myself. So, this week, I vowed to say goodbye to my table-scrap diet and take the time in the morning to eat properly: a combination of whole grains, fruit, and protein. Here’s what I ate:
Monday: Grapenuts (my own bowl, not my kids’!) with banana
Tuesday: Oatmeal with dried cranberries
Wednesday: ½ whole grain bagel with cream cheese, apple
Thursday: Whole wheat toast with peanut butter and banana
Friday: Whole grain toast with 1 fried egg, ½ orange
Finding the five minutes to make a healthy breakfast of my own proved easy. I had more energy at work and wasn’t waiting for the clock to hit noon so I could race out to grab lunch. The lesson: We all need to take time for ourselves everyday, even if it’s just a few moments. Whether it’s to eat a good meal, read, exercise, breathe, or meditate, we must carve out time to do what makes us healthy and happy. So, what have you done for yourself this week? What was your breakfast this morning? Have you ever been a table-scrap dieter, like me?