As we head into 2023, like many of us do, I take the time to reflect on the past year as we all formulate plans to improve our lifestyles to support future goals. Many top 3 resolutions involve improving environmental impact, emotional wellness, or adjusting eating habits. We all know that a common mistake is that we pack on too many of these resolutions that we stick with for a while, get flustered when we don't see results, and then fall off track when external stressors throw us off guard. Instead of picking up where we left off, we say: "eh, let's just try it again next year."
Wow, what a waste.
I am no stranger to this process, and I've seen it happen with my clients all the time! I find it very sad the number of times we give up on ourselves as we get lost in external needs or quick-fix achievements. As someone continuously trying to learn and grow, I thought this year, why not just stick with one goal with multiple effects?
So here we go, time to eat the cupboard.
As a nutritionist, I do my best to stock healthy staples in my cupboard (like whole grains, spices, canned beans, and baking alternatives). And let me tell you, these things stack up! Of course, like any nutritionist, we are known to be 'foodies' so our minds can get the better of us. We think of new recipes to tickle our curiosities or ways to improve comfort-food stapes to make them a bit more beneficial to our health. It's how I ended up with a big bag of millet. Yikes! Often these items get lost in the back or go past their expiry date, and one of my pet peeves is wasting food. So I have made a sweeping declaration for this year, to eat the cupboard.
This one single goal of mine is going to target multiple goals listed below:
Cutting down on waste: As said above, I hate wasting food. Seeing delicious leftovers getting lost in the fridge with mold spots makes me sad. Fortunately, I have a composter, so I know my worms are grateful for the feast. But I rather have those nutrient-dense meals providing my body with the components it needs to stay well-tuned.
Less waste, fewer worries: I know it sounds a bit silly, but I think about the wasted food, which adds some emotional stress to my day. And as we all know, the snowball effects of having a small number of stressors. For a long time can have consequences on a hormonal level and can lead to prolonged issues in the body, such as inflammation and our "fight or flight" modes.
Saving money: Wasted food equals wasted dollars. For example: if you bought two avocados for $6 and were only able to eat one before the other got moldy, then you wasted $3. Goodbye, avocado toast! This waste can add up fairly quickly if we don't notice what's in our fridge, especially since vegetables and other perishable goods can go off sooner than cupboard items. Like most people, my partner and I have future goals that pertain to saving up a large lump of money, so any little savings count!
Bonus, sharing recipes with the world: Yes, I know I haven't been posting many articles recently, and I sincerely apologize. In all honesty, finding a work-life balance can be tricky. We are all works in progress, and I feel not only is this goal going to benefit me, but it can also benefit you with the recipes I'll be posting more regularly (here's hoping, at least!).
And in the spirit of sharing, I want you all to join in and try it out yourselves! Each cupboard is different and unique in its way, just like you and me. So what items do you have that you use frequently? Which ones have been sitting there for years that you don't know what to do with them? What are your favorite recipes, and how would you improve them?
I am excited to hear what you come up with,
Until then, stay well!