WIAW: Finally Balanced

Hello, friends!

It feels as if I have not done a What I Ate Wednesday post in ages! That just means I’ve been accumulating way too many food photos on my phone, and I need to finally share them with the world. All my friends who witness me taking photos of my food ask the ever-famous question: “Is it going on the blog?!”

Yes. Right now.

I’ll be the first to admit that I self-stalk on Instagram. I look back at my feed and reminisce on memories of high school, home-cooked meals, and how bad of an Instagrammer I was three years ago (pointless selfies for dayzzz). The thing that really got me though was how much my eating has changed in the past two years. If you were not aware, I struggled with disordered eating habits just a couple years ago, and I started this blog in the midst of my recovery.

When I was scrolling through my own Instagram feed, I realized how much the quantity and substance of my meals has increased over time:

Two years ago, my dinner would be a salad with some peppers, berries, and cheese. That’s it. I’m not saying that having only a salad for dinner is bad, but I knew that I was hungry for more, and I didn’t honor that.

One year ago, my dinner was usually a bowl of whole grains, one piece of protein, and a vegetable. I was satisfied with that. I ate desserts more often, but sometimes with guilt.

Half a year ago, I would add some more healthy fats like avocado and cheese into my meals. Maybe a little more peanut butter in that oatmeal. I was satisfied, but still cautious with the new additions. I did eat dessert without much guilt at all though.

Today, I don’t always have whole grains, but I try my best to eat them more often than not. I eat red meat. I make my desserts a la mode. I eat *gasp* TWO tablespoons of peanut butter at breakfast on most days.

And you know what else about today? I’ve never felt better in my life. It’s taken me a lot of time to truly internalize that food=fuel. I could have said it all day long in the past, but I would still keep the general thought of calories in the back of my mind. Here in college I have no idea how many calories I’ve been eating, but whatever the average number is, it seems to be working out for the best!

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Linking up to Jenn‘s weekly food fiesta!

With that, why don’t we get to the food, eh? 🙂 Here are just some of the things I’ve been enjoying this past month:

Bringing more peanut butter to the table…

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Clockwise from top right:

scrambled eggs + potatoes + ketchup + apple + unpictured bowl of granola with milk // whole wheat French toast with pb + my favorite cottage cheese concoction + glass o’ milk // whole grain blueberry pancake with pb + the usual + glass o’ milk // oatmeal with jam and pb + the usual

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Dorm breakfasts: Greek yogurt with banana, honey and cinnamon // oatmeal with vanilla protein powder, banana, cinnamon, and pb

Non-meat options…

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whole wheat roasted vegetable calzone + salad with hard boiled eggs // fish with sweet potatoes and summer squash // bean stew with polenta + salad // crispy baked fish with veggies + salad

Meaty options…

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“Shepherd’s pie” with mashed sweet potato // grilled chicken over a kale panzanella // bone-in, skin-on chicken + mashed potatoes + collard greens // Asian salisbury steak with soba noodles

Comfort food…

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whole wheat sesame chicken pizza // whole wheat spaghetti bolognese // eggplant caprese stack // brisket + mashed potatoes + roasted root veggies

ALL the plants…

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salads (which are often accompaniments to a main dish) // moroccan veggie stew over couscous

Desserts of course…

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“brownstone” chocolate cake (best chocolate cake EVER) // bananas foster crisp a la mode (holymolyamazing) // free chocolate chip cookie a la Catholic Center missionaries // gingerbread cake a la mode

I’m eating more than I ever have, but I only feel better when I am nourishing myself properly, despite temptations to eat like the girl next to me. Have I thrown nutrition out the window? Absolutely not. Do I stress about whole grains and squeaky “clean” eats at every meal. Heck no. I feel like I am finally balanced.

Well that was a long WIAW. I guess I just wanted to make up for the lack of WIAW’s these past several weeks. 😉

Hope you all have a lovely Wednesday!

So tell me:

Has your eating evolved at all?

What is your idea of a balanced diet?

What is the best dessert you’ve had recently?

P.S. Have you entered the Arctic Zero giveaway?