Biggest Food Challenge

Biggest food challengeThe last 10 months have seen a vast improvement in my overall health since changing my diet from one filled with meat, dairy and oil to a plant-based, whole foods lifestyle. While not 100% complaint to the teachings of Dr. McDougall I have achieved health goals I have set for myself. Most recently I surpassed my total cholesterol goal (150) and currently have a TC of 130. In June I exceeded my weight goal (175 lbs.) and have been a constant 173 pounds. This weekend will the biggest food challenge for me.

Even Dr. McDougall says to “treat yourself” but don’t make it habit forming. Depending on where an individual is on their journey to health treats can come in many different forms. To date I haven’t let myself go for a weekend, let alone a day, but the pressure has been there at time. I still hold onto a single vice, beer but even that has been drastically reduced the last 6 weeks.

This Friday I fly to Las Vegas, “Sin City” where the motto “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” might relate to how I eat this weekend. It will be a weekend full of “sinful” foods and most likely a lot of beer. It is our annual fantasy football draft weekend. One thing Vegas isn’t short on is food…of all kinds from cheap buffets to ala carte menus, you can find it in Vegas. Our tradition is to eat at The N9NE Steakhouse located in The Palms Hotel. Prior to changing my eating habits I always looked forward to this meal. The steak is outstanding! This only went along with great tasting appetizers and sides to accompany our dinner. What’s dinner without dessert?

I have been looking at the menu and it’s slim pickings for an appetizer. I was considering some sashimi, since I haven’t completely swore off eating fish. The only time I have eaten out it was sushi. I could also forget the fish and try the avocado fries. This sounds fried, but some recipes I have seen are baked. Reviews I have read say these fries don’t taste greasy.

The main course won’t be steak. I won’t fall that far off to think I need meat after 10 months. That leaves the reliable starch standby. The baked potato. I do plan on making a call to the restaurant to see if they would possibly prepare something vegan without oil. I will let you know how that turns out.

While this dinner is the big eating event, other meals won’t be so challenging. Breakfast I can easily find rolled or steel cut oats with fresh fruits and juice in the morning. Lunches will probably consist of potatoes or some vegetable type of sandwich. Snacks through out the day won’t be 100% healthy, but I will exercise good judgement and eat what I think is acceptable. Alcohol will be the big downfall. Since I have cutback on my weekly intake, I have lost the lust of the buzz that beer brought me. The taste after going nearly 4 weeks (prior to my physical) was not what I expected. Hopefully I can limit the intake of any alcohol this weekend.

Regardless of what happens it will be an enjoyable weekend with childhood friends. Eating will be a challenge and this will be the first time I must employ real willpower and make good, healthy decisions. If I do happen to fail in some form or fashion, I will get back up and continue on with this way of eating the next day. One meal won’t make or break me and through 10 months I have truly transformed my health. I will have a food report when I return.