#33: Purely Experimental: No Processed Food for a Week
I know that a HUGE part of how I’ve been feeling recently has to do with diet. By diet, I don’t mean my lack of weight loss progress or inability to keep my macros. I mean the food that I’m consuming on a daily basis. I’m not 15 years old anymore, so I can’t eat only cookies every day and expect to function at my best. I mentioned that I eat vegetables too now, but only consuming those two things aren’t doing any favors for any kind of performance.
Not to mention that most of my “normal” meals are frozen lunches, protein shakes, processed yogurts and other snacks like crackers and packaged cheese sticks or guacamole. In my recent quest to restore overall wellness, I had this crazy idea. What if I didn’t eat any processed food for a week? At first, this seemed like a great way to kickstart myself back into better habits. But the more I think about it, the more I doubt myself. What am I going to eat for lunch? What about the holiday party on Friday? Etc. There’s never going to be a perfect time, so I decided to go for it. I want to be clear: This is not an attempt to lose weight and there will be no calorie counting. This my own experiment to see if it makes a difference in how I feel and operate. This is not long term either, so I’m not concerned with sustainability. One week and that’s it.
So, what actually is processed and what isn’t processed? I know there are many different definitions, but I’m going to follow the idea that processed means anything that goes through an assembly line to add artificial ingredients. For example, the cheese, Greek yogurt, frozen ready meals and protein shakes that I eat are processed. Whole fruits, vegetables and meat are not processed. I’m okay with previously frozen, because it’s not practical for me to predict how much fruit and vegetables I can eat in a week, or even a few days.
I had a funny little fight with myself in my head about milk, tea and coffee yesterday. Is milk processed? According to Google, milk is processed to cure disease and fortify it with minerals. I can’t imagine coffee and tea not being processed because we don’t consume them in pure form. Luckily, I’m not addicted to coffee, so I’ll be going without it for the next week.
I’ll document how I feel at the end of each day, for better or worse, so that you don’t have to repeat the same experiment…