You Got Them To Eat What?


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So we’ve been working on our lifestyle change for close on 3 months now.  It’s been challenging, but I think that we have finally gotten into the groove of it all and making supper is not the daunting task that it once used to be.  (Thank goodness).

The long and short of it is that:

  • we have completely cut out grains (pasta, breads, rice, oats and um, anything else grainy that you can think of)
  • we have drastically lowered our dairy intake to maybe one little bit in coffee a couple of times a day
  • we have not bought or consumed refined sugar in 3 months
  • we have mostly stopped eating things that are packaged or produced – you know, like store bought soups for example (you’d be surprised what they hide in there – sugar has no business being in vegetable soup!)

Instead we have replaced those things by:

  • Eating more vegetables, fruit, meat and nuts.  All in the closest to original form that it can be found in.
  • Also COCONUT everything – oil, flakes, milk, cream – it’s been my saving grace and helped me not to miss the milk so much (remember how much Milo was a daily part of my life?!), you can even make a pretty decent hot chocolate with it.

This change was hard for me.  So very, very hard.  I was never technically overweight, but I was very far from healthy.  If you had to ask me what my favourite food was it would be (and still is if I’m honest) – cheeseburgers, pizza with loads of toppings, milk, cheese, chocolate, pasta – the creamier the better.  Oh and chips, give me all the chips!

So actually saying that it’s been hard is kind of a huge understatement.  If I didn’t have to look at my acne/dermatitis covered face every morning I don’t know how long I would have been able to stick it out.

The funny thing is that the more I’m doing it, the less I want to eat the bad things.  It’s almost not even hard to make the right decisions when we are out now.

But you guys…  I have 3 kids.  As soon as people hear about our lifestyle change they are nearly always like, “Oh cool, that’s good for you, but like what about your kids?”

And well, what about them?

The truth is that if I feel so strongly that eating these things is bad for my body and overall health, how much more so for my growing children.  So naturally, we have implemented this lifestyle for them as well.  Well, as much as we can.  At the moment it’s all a bit mixed up, but here’s a sort of breakdown of what they eat everyday:

Breakfast: Rice cereal with cows milk/Coco Pops with cows milk (I need to find an easy/quick alternative)
School: Fruit (usually apple or banana), yoghurt, bread with jam and water in their bottles.  (I have very little control over this and also I pay the school for it and the kids enjoy it, so why not right?)
School lunch: Some kind of cooked meal – stew, mac and cheese, spaghetti bolognaise etc followed by dessert of fruit or ice cream or jelly.  Again – very little control but they love it so, why not.
Second lunch at Ga’s House:  I have limited control.  But this is usually a block of cheese (cheddar), ham/viennas and occasionally a sandwich or ice cream.
Supper:  Now this is where I have control – finally.  So our supper always only consists of a range of veg and meat.  Often it’s roast veg with chicken pieces, or veg with mince or fish with sweet potatoe chips and veg or something else that resembles veg and protein.  Sometimes there will be potatoes, but seldom.

I could write forever about how they have accepted (or not accepted) this change, the benefits that I have seen in our combined health and so much more, but I think I’m going to wrap it up.  Unless you have questions of course?  Let me know if you do.

For so long we have been pushed with really terrible “facts” regarding our health and what to eat.  If you want to know more about them read this and then read the comments – my mind was almost king of blown.  It just makes so much sense.

We’ve (finally) decided to take the step to look after ourselves and our kids, it’s a hard one, but so worth it.

Have you take the this step?  How have your family been affected by it?  Do you have questions?

22 thoughts on “You Got Them To Eat What?

  1. Hey Cindy

    How about adding a tab where you record your daily meal intake so that people who are interested can see what it looks like practically on a day to day basis. Most people want to make the change, but are scared at how hard it will be (specifically thinking about what to make). A day to day diary (for a time) might make it look a lot less daunting.

    So proud of you for sticking with this decision and getting your family on board. It really does challenge me to make the effort.

  2. I don’t do gluten or dairy – I haven’t for many years so often the meals I cook do not contain either of these.

    Kids lunches are my worst though. Kiara has popcorn and biltong which is fairly healthy but Cameron has a muffin, chips and a hot dog – not so healthy but after 11 years of trying to find something he will eat we have come to this. So my options are a kid who doesn’t eat vs a kid who eats this!

    I am not convinced of the diets that cut out whole food groups BUT we do try and keep our diet as healthy as possible and we use very little packaged goods.

    We are working on the sugar. I cut it out before I fell pregnant and am now trying to cut it out again but it is the hardest for me!

    • Oh man – the lunches really get to me. I want to smack myself for putting in a sweetened yoghurt for them to eat with their already gluten rich lunch. But I can never find good enough alternatives – the carrot stick I send always seem to make it all the way home perfectly in tact.

  3. Have you tried coconut water, its delicious. they sell it in 200ml juice boxes( comes in a 6 pack and a box) at wellness warehouse and my kids love it and me too.

  4. Its been much easier cutting stuff out for the kids than myself and Chris actually… Elijah eats rice cakes though, because its still better than bread and sometimes thats the best option. I crave grains and sugar though… I think its all down to the lack of kitchen and cooking space, I can really only eat so many eggs…

    • Oh man, I totally feel you. I can only stomach eggs every second or third day at a push. I think the main goal is to cut the gluten, the rest is still kind of OK in moderation.

  5. Totally agree Julia- otherwise, hows about a post of some examples that you guys usually eat (when eating out as well). I have tried paleo before and lasted like a week! 😦 though the benefits are amazing- keen to give it another try.

    • Going out is the worst! That’s where I struggle the most – you’re right, will definitely think about this and get back to you about the better options.

  6. Well done Cindy! It is such an awesome investment in the long run to look after your body and your kids bodies… what you do in your 20’s affect you for the rest of your life ..it’s almost too late after the 20’s (or so I have read). A while ago we started eating healthier, cutting out sugar happened long ago just because we felt it wasn’t necessary and before you know it, anything with sugar tastes horribly sweet (but you know this). After hearing a talk at M&M’s about nutrition we made a concerted effort to cut out the junk (no sweets for leah and used alternatives like raisons/dried fruit (in moderation) and lots of fresh fruit). Leah doesn’t drink any juice (she prefers water thankfully) and we don’t drink much juice at all either. For a while we cut out carbs and wheat… carbs were easy for me but wheat I only lasted 2 weeks… so now we are eating everything in moderation …. hardly any potatoes and pasta on the odd occassion. We eat lots of meat, veg, salad, fruit and yoghurt. I tried cutting out diary for a little while and substituted it with oat milk but that soon lost its appeal. I am really interested in the coconut milk though – do you get this at woolies? Anyway, I take my hat off to you for keeping to it and not giving up, definitely something to rethink again! I agree with Julia, a tab of some sort would be awesome …hehe 😀 Sorry for the long post!!

    • You are doing a fantastic job! I think that as long as you are cutting the gluten then that’s first prize. We still eat a fair amount of potatoes. You can get coconut milk from most stores (Pick n Pay too) but it’s like R20 a can!! Crazy!

  7. We made a similar switch, but we still use grains in moderation. Ironically, I realized that our toddlers’ diets didn’t change much…but ours sure did! I’ve always tried to minimize anything processed with them because I know it’s not healthy…you’d think I would have the same approach with myself, right??

    We feel better, look (a hell of a lot) better, and agree that this is just how we need to stay from now on, but there are days where I crave a mean cupcake or 5. 🙂

    • Oh cupcakes! I am desperately looking for gluten/dairy free options here and keen to try them as soon as I get my paws on my almond flour. I think it’s so much easier to control what we eat because we hardly fight ourselves for the decision – but our kids can really get upset about it 😉

  8. Earlier this year my son came home with a rash all over his elbows, after trying different lotions it was discovered to be a celiac rash, gluten intolerance.
    Major shock to the system, although we have not cut out all grain, I must admit that because I couldn’t be bothered to cook separate meals for everyone we all went gluten free and my lifelong eczema is clearing up and I have more energy. Its not very easy but its also not terrible, worst was finding wheat in my fav products, not sure why its in there but thats a no no too. So im loving your grain free goodies, helps so much, the clusters were super yum.

  9. Hi Cindy, my man and I have just started doing the tim noakes diet which is very similar to yours. I wanted to know did you cut out sugar completely or use sweetener? I think Julia’s suggestion is awesome. I love reading your posts. I think you can help a lot of people out. Hows your skin with your new eating plan?

    • I just cut sugar completely – like cold turkey. At first my morning coffee was really depressing but then I started having proper coffee (not instant) and that made it worlds better. But apparently Xylitol is a good sweetening alternative and it’s natural.

      Skin is looking better but still no where near clear – hoping to get there soon, but the other health effects (regular digestion, no tummy cramps, more energy, feeling stronger) are all worth it too 🙂

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