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Author Topic: Foods that truly make us feel good  (Read 21121 times)
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« Topic Start: February 14, 2011, 12:48:34 pm »

Related to the "Self-Esteem while fat" discussion, I thought it might be cool to have a discussion of food that *isn't* tied to dieting or losing weight, but is instead tied to other things that make our bodies feel good. (I mentioned that currently optimise for brain, for example, and food choices are part of that for me.) 

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.
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« Reply #1: February 14, 2011, 12:48:54 pm »

[mispost: will have an actual post up shortly]
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« Reply #2: February 14, 2011, 01:03:01 pm »

Related to the "Self-Esteem while fat" discussion, I thought it might be cool to have a discussion of food that *isn't* tied to dieting or losing weight, but is instead tied to other things that make our bodies feel good. (I mentioned that currently optimise for brain, for example, and food choices are part of that for me.) 

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.
Warm, freshly baked bread with butter.
Or warm, freshly baked banana bread, toasted until it's just crispy, with butter.
Plain pasta with olive oil and salt.

Carbs and fat make me happy. I can never regret eating them, no matter what. They're just ... home and comfort and family.
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« Reply #3: February 14, 2011, 01:09:53 pm »

Related to the "Self-Esteem while fat" discussion, I thought it might be cool to have a discussion of food that *isn't* tied to dieting or losing weight, but is instead tied to other things that make our bodies feel good. (I mentioned that currently optimise for brain, for example, and food choices are part of that for me.) 

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.

ice cream.  seriously.  if my stomach gets upset, ice cream settles things out so I feel better again.  "normal" things to deal with an upset tummy - dry toast, crackers, etc - just make me want to hurl.  ice cream, and I'm good.
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« Reply #4: February 14, 2011, 01:15:09 pm »

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.

In general, I try really hard to listen to what my body's craving - and then give it the best quality version of that thing I can. (For example, I get good artisan-type chocolate rather than Hershey's: it's satisfying in much smaller amounts, and avoids a lot of the stuff I'd rather not eat anymore, for example. Ditto ice cream, cheese, and much more)

I've been experimenting with food choices for a while: my bloodwork shows that both the thyroid and Vitamin D are now back at useful levels, but I was still having some issues with brainfog and concentration and overall energy that seemed like they could use improvement (and in particular, having focus/concentration before noon...)

There are also a bunch of foods that are considered at best problematic for people with hypothyroidism - notably non-fermented soy (which leaves out almost all meat alternatives, and soybean oil is in a huge number of prepared foods), uncooked brassicas (cabbages, broccoli, etc.) A lot of hypothyroid people say they do better on a low carb or moderately low carb diet, or on a gluten-free diet.

What I've discovered for me is:
- It seems like my best balance point is to eat one grain-based meal a day (pasta, substantial bread, etc.) and otherwise to rely on meat, veggies, and dairy for the bulk of my calories. (I've tried going gluten free for a week, and didn't see huge benefits beyond what I get with the one-meal a day thing, and the one-meal bit is so much more flexible I'd like to stay there if I can.)

- However, if I'm going to hit what I need to make my brain work, I do actually need to take in a fair amount of fat and protein - if I get below a certain number of calories, my brain stops working, and veggies alone just don't do it.

(As a side: I really love Kate Harding's take on numbers of calories: http://kateharding.net/2008/07/17/what-if-they-were-right-about-calories/ - she points out that it's not like your body says "Ok, X many fewer today, we'll split that up evenly around the body." It's more complicated than that.)

- And the more I can eat the stuff often called "nourishing foods" (per Sally Fallon, and Weston A. Price, and many others) - basically, the stuff our grandparents would have eaten, rather than highly processed stuff - the better off I am.  

That means everything from homemade chicken stock (easy, in a slow cooker, it turns out!) to exploring things like foods with probiotic bacteria (sauerkraut turns out to be lovely. Who knew?) to eggs (scrambled eggs in the morning with a little cheese turn out to be a great breakfast for me) I do buy some processed stuff for when I'm too tired/busy to think about cooking, but mostly from Trader Joe's, who are good about their labeling and who generally avoid unnecessary processing.

- I've also been exploring some alternative oils - coconut oil is supposed to be particularly good for hypothyroid due to the specific structure of the fats, and I definitely feel like I have more energy when I use it. (I cook my eggs in it, add a spoonful to soups when it makes sense to do so, and cook popcorn in it. It doesn't have a very strong taste.) Otherwise, I use olive oil and butter, and do my utmost to avoid canola oil, soybean oil, and so on.

Yesterday, I was tired and not up for a lot of cooking, so there was a lot of canned soup (from an organic soup maker) in my life. Today, I have sauerkraut and kielbasa (from a local farm) in the crockpot, and I had some more sauerkraut for lunch, and am trying to decide what else to eat. (Could be tuna salad and crackers, could be soup. Tuna sounds good.)
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« Reply #5: February 14, 2011, 01:15:52 pm »

Related to the "Self-Esteem while fat" discussion, I thought it might be cool to have a discussion of food that *isn't* tied to dieting or losing weight, but is instead tied to other things that make our bodies feel good. (I mentioned that currently optimise for brain, for example, and food choices are part of that for me.) 

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.

Fresh fruits and veggies usually do the trick for me, simply because I know I am eating something very healthy and full of nutrients that nourishes my body.  
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« Reply #6: February 14, 2011, 01:46:20 pm »

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.

Lately I've been enjoying crunchy veggies in my lunch salads. I think they make me happy because they go "crunch crunch crunch", but also because they are full of water and I'm often thirsty, and thirdly, because I know they are good for me.

That being said, when I saw this post I was entertaining myself making rainbow colored hearts out of the M&Ms I got for Valentine's Day. Squee! Colors make me happy!  Grin

Just recalled that part of the reason I was entertain by my veggies was that I hadn't added salad dressing and I could pick them up individually with my fingers. So there is something pleasing about being able to tactile-ly interact with my food, it seems.
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« Reply #7: February 14, 2011, 02:05:38 pm »

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.

Foods that make me feel great:

Leafy greens. I truly love kale, collards, baby lettuces, romaine, etc. My favorite kale recipe is to "massage" it with olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper then add a teaspoon of maple syrup. Let it sit for ten minutes. Eating that gives me so much energy.

Sweet potatoes, red bell pepper, cabbage (sauerkraut, too), beets.

Pretty much all fruits. I had them listed but...well, suffice to say that I love fruit. I don't have a problem with any of them.

Whole wheat breads and pastas, in moderation.

Good, quality beef. Eggs. Beans (all kinds, all types, all applications!), lentils.

High-fat, quality milk, cheese and butter. Almonds and almond butter, sunflower seeds, cashews. Olive oil, coconut oil, avocado. Vinegars.

Hot tea, coffee, water.

And... dark chocolate Cheesy

I wish cakes and cookies made me feel good, because I truly love them, but...they don't. Truly sad, as I love to bake!
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« Reply #8: February 14, 2011, 02:35:30 pm »

Just recalled that part of the reason I was entertain by my veggies was that I hadn't added salad dressing and I could pick them up individually with my fingers. So there is something pleasing about being able to tactile-ly interact with my food, it seems.

Have you thought about doing bento-style boxes for lunch? (http://lunchinabox.net/ is my favorite starting point.) They're so much fun to play with, and they don't need to involve incredibly fancy food.
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« Reply #9: February 14, 2011, 02:43:47 pm »

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.

Can you define "feel great"?  Potato chips make me feel great while I'm eating them.  But then I feel bloated and listless a half hour later.  The "during" is awesome, though.  Wink

Brina
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« Reply #10: February 14, 2011, 03:27:29 pm »

Can you define "feel great"?  Potato chips make me feel great while I'm eating them.  But then I feel bloated and listless a half hour later.  The "during" is awesome, though.  Wink

Brina

grapefruit.

It's hard to explain.  No bad aftereffects, I hate them, I really do, except when I'm having cravings (which started when I was pregnant the first time 18 years ago, and still happen. )  And when they do, gotta have a grapefruit. 
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« Reply #11: February 14, 2011, 04:17:17 pm »

grapefruit.

It's hard to explain.  No bad aftereffects, I hate them, I really do, except when I'm having cravings (which started when I was pregnant the first time 18 years ago, and still happen. )  And when they do, gotta have a grapefruit. 

I've been craving grapefruit like crazy lately.  In the last few weeks, I've eaten at least one a day, and often two.  But there's a balance point where yummy-grapefruitiness turns into too much acid.

I tend to go through cravings fairly regularly, and I usually try to listen to them because they seem to provided something specific that I need for some reason.

And chocolate.  But that goes without saying.   Cool

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« Reply #12: February 14, 2011, 04:19:27 pm »

However, if I'm going to hit what I need to make my brain work, I do actually need to take in a fair amount of fat and protein - if I get below a certain number of calories, my brain stops working, and veggies alone just don't do it.

Jenett,

Can you point me to some reliable info on this?  Thanks!!

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« Reply #13: February 14, 2011, 04:46:58 pm »


Everytime I feel like I am coming down with a cold, there is only one thing: Orange Juice.
Half the bottle.

And rice, I feel that it does me really good.

In the morning I need a carb breakfast.

In the summer meat from the BBQ and salads, or veggies.
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« Reply #14: February 14, 2011, 04:51:41 pm »

Jenett,
Can you point me to some reliable info on this?  Thanks!!

In this case, trial and error + a bunch of reading that backs it up.

(Note: some of what I'm doing is optimised for a particular combination of issues: the thyroid means slower metabolism, but my cholesterol, blood pressure, and other heart indicators are all quite good, for example, as is my blood sugar. Someone with different sets of concerns would probably want/need different choices. Regardless, other combinations don't give me as much brain, which I find problematic. What I end up with is something pretty close to a moderate low-carb diet in the maintenance phase.)

Books worth looking at though, include Gary Taubes' _Good Calories, Bad Calories_  (which I haven't read yet, directly, but have read commentary on)- he's got lots of stuff up on his website at http://www.garytaubes.com, too. The Fat Nutritionist, who does a good job of breaking down the studies at http://www.fatnutritionist.com/, and various other nourishing food sources.  

There's a lot of ongoing discussion about what intake of fat has to do with either nutrition in general, or weight: my general take from reading a bunch of stuff over the past year is that the type of food makes a lot more difference than fat/carb/protein does: I eat pasture-fed butter, organic or grass-fed beef, ditto on milk, etc. all of which have a healthier fat profile than conventionally farmed versions.
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