Monday, April 30, 2012

Ruts of Unsat S'toots

Here's how it is. If you could eat just what you want for a meal, you would be perfectly satisfied after the proper amount was consumed. You would have no interest, let alone temptation, in nibbling something more. If you are like me, you often do not have available the things you really want, so you eat something as similar to it as you can find. This fills your satisfaction scale bar to some level below 100%. Let's say for illustration, you want some beets and corn and can only find a tomato. You eat the tomato, and again, for the sake of illustration, let's say that does something for you and satisfies 34% of your needs. You now must do something to fill or kill the other 66%, for which there are many imaginable options, but the most common thing done by us Americans, who have plenty of artificiality available to hand, is to eat some sort of dessert or snacky thing until we are so sick and/or tired of eating that we finally stop. In such a case, we have not satisfied our need, we have merely stunned our appetite along with incapacitating the rest of our system. This appetite stun can be of varying degrees pleasant or uncomfortable, but in any case, it shuts up our appetite, but does not satisfy it. In this process, we stun or stress other system functions so that we do not feel well. This discomfort can range from merely feeling stuffed to feeling heartburn or nausea. Or if diabetic, total electrified smashdown. In any case, it always lowers our energy level. We all get into a rut. We have our personal list of grocery store conveniences with acceptable value/harmful and value/lacking ratios. We bring them home along with the things that some of us old-fashioned folk still intend to cook, but often eat them first or instead of. My thing has always been peanuts, peanut butter and nuts. It's what I eat when I want nuts and when I want something else that isn't there. My wife thinks of deli sandwiches and tacos. Peanut butter, deli and tacos are what are prepared on an average day, in place of what we really want. On occasion, there are other things besides, such as pasta, cold cereal or bagels. Rut Substitutes can be unhealthy things like sugar puffs or ramen out of a bag, or something more real such as peanut butter or a baked potato. Either way, they only get you up the bar so far. You need more real meals. My solution is to raise the priority of meal planning and preparation. Steal time from other duties and amusements and put more imagination and work into meal planning and preparation. Learn to 'fix' more than 6 different suppers, and embellish them too. Continually add variety and skill in your cooking. And if you're going to have tacos, put on or in something that makes it a real meal. How about radishes, for one? But at least you put some thought and work in, and that's what will count. The more you try, the quick and easier it will become to consistently cook real food. Raise the (sat) bar! And just think - whatever time you sacrifice to make a real meal will come back to you ten-fold in the form of increased energy and efficiency. And all will be sat.