Life Realignment :: Nutrition

I recently started a series of posts called Life Realignment, reflecting on 4 key areas we need to work on as we get settled as new parents in a new home, a new community, and new churches.

First on the list is nutrition. I’ve always been interested in nutrition, including the latest information and reports of how some foods have been to shown to have certain benefits. (It gets interesting, though, when some studies seem to contradict other studies.)

As we’ve written before, many of our routines have been shaken up with all of the transition we’ve experienced this year, including how/what we eat. Joleen sometimes says that she doesn’t really know what she eats because we’re usually focused on feeding Ethan.

Speaking of Ethan, he gives us motivation to eat well. We want him to eat well, and in order for that to happen, we have to model that for him.

While I’ve always been interested in nutrition, I have not always eaten as well as I should. Because weight gain has not been a problem for me (I’ve spent most of my life trying to gain weight!), I’ve been sloppy at times with my nutrition.

It’s not so much that my nutrition is poor as much as I need it to be better. While I have not struggled with weight gain, I have struggled with high cholesterol for all of my adult life. Up to this point, I’ve been able to control it with nutrition and exercise, but there are certain things I need to do more consistently to keep it in check.

There are a number of things I try to do (occasionally eating/using, in moderation, things like walnuts, cinnamon, olive oil, dark chocolate, etc.), for me the big three things I need to do consistently include …

  1. Avoid foods high in saturated fat as much as possible.
  2. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed (which I grind in a coffee grinder, one used only for flaxseed) on cereal. I’ve been doing this (sometimes consistently, sometimes inconsistently) over the course of the last several years. Actually, I just got back to doing this last week for the first time since we went to Korea in early February!
  3. Since November 2007 I have been drinking a glass of Minute Maid Heart Wise Orange Juice, which has plant sterols, two times a day. Studies have shown that drinking this juice twice a day reduces cholesterol (studies were conducted for 8-10 weeks, if I remember correctly). (I haven’t had my cholesterol checked since I started drinking this juice, so I can’t say it’s had an impact yet.)

We also want to eat well is to maximize our energy levels. Eating well should help us to have more energy, and, these days, we need all the energy we can get! 😀

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