Saturday, March 6, 2010

Who is Shea and What Does She Eat?

So, eating myself alive? It's better than eating myself to death. I'm in an overall pursuit of better health, in addition to just weight loss. In the past few months, however, I've lost 40+ lbs. and counting. So, in an effort to keep myself honest and let others know just how I'm doing it, I figured why not blog it? After all, I still have quite a few pounds to lose. I'll post weight-loss milestones as they occur.

I live in NYC. I'm a nerdy girl who loves to cook, write, read and make music (not necessarily at the same time, though I love a challenge). I've always been interested in nutrition, but I'm not a nutritionist nor am I a doctor. You'll see I'm also by no means a professional photographer.

I'm not here to tell others how to live or endorse my weight-loss methods and better-health endeavors, but to share my own experiences. I can only hope this helps those who may be facing some of the same challenges. I'm sure there are obstacles I'll face that could use outside input, too.

The questions I seem to hear most often are, "What do you eat?", "What are you doing?" and the ever-popular, "What program are you on?".

The answers are somewhat simple... "Less than my body burns." and "Just watching what I eat and working at it."

I know these aren't really the answers one necessarily wants to hear. I'm not really doing anything spectacularly special, nor am I following a specific program or plan. You'll see I'm not starving myself. I eat well, move how and when I can, and just keep at it. I find that last one can be the biggest kicker. I'm human, though. Sometimes I stumble, regardless of the best intentions. 

I've got some health challenges. I've had a few chain reactions going on in my body, resulting in high blood sugar and liver problems, among other things. I eat with these in mind. I also have a chronic headache ("Ice Pick Headache" or Primary Stabbing Headaches... just as it sounds... all the time!) and, while diet doesn't appear to be a factor, the nine-month diagnosis process and long string of meds while misdiagnosed definitely fueled the weight gain.

I'm not a recipe-type of person, though I do read a lot of cookbooks for inspiration and ideas. I tend to cook more by feel, smell, and visuals, instead of strictly-measured proportions. I do, however, measure and weigh just about everything I eat. In order to do this, I often work a bit in reverse. I eye the amount I want to use, then measure or weigh it. For dry ingredients and foods, I use a measuring cup as the scoop, so that I know how much I've put in. For things I use or eat regularly, I also have a pretty good eye for quantity. This helps when I'm not the one doing the cooking.

I like to encourage the natural cook in everyone. If you don't like something in a particular dish, leave it out! The same goes for something you think would go well. The beauty about cooking is that there are very few hard and fast rules. Outside of chemical reactions (more prevalent in baking), nothing is set in stone. Experiment and expand... make it your own.

I've always had an interest in nutrition. I've been omnivorous, vegetarian, pescetarian and at times bordered on being a dietary vegan. Even now, I don't cook a whole lot of meat, though that varies. This blog, however, isn't a lecture.

I welcome suggestions for foods, questions, comments, and any criticism that isn't mean-spirited.


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