I’m still having those ‘A-Ha’ moments even after almost 2 years of following a real food lifestyle. But what I love most is when those ‘A-Ha’ moments catch up with my husband. Granted he is from a more traditional culture than here in the States (he’s Filipino), but I have worked really hard over the last two years to get him off the Diet Coke and sugary processed crap that have infiltrated his diet since being here in the U.S. Most of the struggle has been from me being the typical nagging wife, and some of it was him just plain old sneaking it when I wasn’t looking . . .conflict.
Yeah, you can call it dysfunctional if you want — telling a grown man how to eat, but I am worried for my future children especially considering how difficult it has been for me to get pregnant. He will also tell you that he ‘gets’ why I do it. He just wants to have his occasional Diet Coke, and for the most part he has really done a good job of giving it up.
A-Ha Moments Make It All Worth It
So where did this ‘a-ha’ moment come from? Of course there is a bit of a back story and those of you who read this blog know that my hubs like sweeter foods and I like more tangy/tart foods — which means I LOVE LIME and he does not care for the flavor or tartness so much (I know, he’s ca-razy, right?)
His family cooks this Filipino version of spaghetti with sauce, meat and a TON of sugar. I’ve always thought it was gross even when I was not into real food because it was so sickening sweet, but he loved it. And sometime last week he must have been to his mom’s house where he was able to swipe some leftovers. So I decided I wanted it out of my refrigerator and I warmed it up for him for dinner instead of making a meal. I, of course had another more ‘real food’ type leftover (Curried Butternut Squash and Apple Soup with Smoked Bacon) in which I cut a lime and squeezed some juice to add a little more tartness.
All of a sudden . . . my hubs reaches over and takes MY lime and squeezes it over his nastified sweetened spaghetti. And not just a little . . . . he squeezed A LOT! And said, “Mmm-mm, this is good with the lime!”
After sitting there STUNNED and SPEECHLESS, I had an epiphany. It wasn’t because my hubs suddenly started liking lime that he decided to use it (because we just had a discussion about this in relation to another meal in which I made food with just a little too much lime for his liking). NOPE, it’s because his body is no longer used to eating sickening sweet crap-ola and he needed to temper the sweetness! All the real unrefined sweeteners that I have used to replace his usual sugar addiction have caused my hubs to desire less sweet foods. He no longer uses ‘splenda’ or refined sugar in his coffee — he uses sucanat. All my baked goods and cooking use honey or maple syrup if a sweetener is used. So except for the very rare Diet Coke, he is really not ingesting refined sugars and his palate has adjusted accordingly. A-MAZ-ING.
What’s the Point?
If you are struggling with getting your spouse or kids to eat real food, just keep up what you are doing. Keep being consistent with sneaking the good stuff in and eventually your food substitutions will help them adjust. I’m not saying I’ve won the war here since for me that would mean a complete disowning of Diet Coke forever (a girl can hope, right?), but I certainly see some small victories. Onward and Upward!