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Looking for advice with eating healthy

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  • Looking for advice with eating healthy

    Looking for someone who is knowledgeable about food/nutrition/cooking. Looking for advice before I start spending money to go to the doctor/nutritionist, just to tell me what I've already read online.

    I'm a very picky eater and I literally don't like anything. It's very frustrating and upsetting. I have an unhealthy daily eating routine and I'm wondering if the past 3 days is that catching up to me. Not been nauseous, but stomach has been blah, not been wanting to eat much or the normal bad supper stuff, been having oatmeal instead for supper. (Bathroom has been outside of normal). I take daily vitamin in the morning and extra vitamin c in the evening.

    I work midnight on Sunday and 5am my other 4 days. I get up a 3am and go to bed at 10:30pm when husband gets up for work. I may or may not fall asleep on couch before then. 5am shifts and two days off I have 2 poptarts for breakfast. 1 poptart for break. cheeze its and cookies for break. Then lunch over the past 11 years has gone from blah frozen meals of spaghetti, to frozen meat and potato, to rotiserrie chicken and potato, to tortellini with meat sauce and ground beef, to frozen nuggets and potato. (And I throw in a one or two bites of candy for a sweet after that lunch stuff for a clearing of the palette). Supper is frozen nuggets and fries. Once or twice a month is spaghetti and a breadstick. Midnight shift at work is the same thing for work eating, just a different order and some little bites muffins before clocking in. May or may not eat a snack before going to his parents house for meal which ranges from spaghetti, tacos (which I only do the meat and cheese), or some sort of meat and potatoes. Then I don't usually eat anything after that, just go to bed when it's about time to eat again.

    **I only drink milk (1 or 2% and fairlife chocolate, which my diabetic friend just told me to get the kids version because of the omega 3 and stuff in it) and water. I don't like pop, juice or alcohol. I could drink cherry gatorade. And I just discovered fairlife has a protein shake. Protein shakes are gross, but this new fairlife is not bad and I plan on drinking more of that.
    **The only fruit I like so far is banana. I've tried a pomegranate seed once when it was offered. It was ok but of course it being seedy, got stuck in teeth. Would like to learn how to better incorporate that. I have tried and don't like strawberry, blueberry, apple, cherries, raspberry, melons, grape, watermelon, peach, orange, pineapple, kiwi, pear, tomato, (one that I can't remember the name, it's like a citrus texture but is sweet, has two versions according to my friend who gave me a slice, she says one for cooking and one for straight up eating).... lots of other based off this look unappealing.
    **I don't like any veggies I've tried. Carrott, pea, green bean, mushrooms, onions (I can tolerate fried/diced onions in like meatloaf, but don't like crunching on that), hmm what else am I missing? Other things like broccoli, cucumber, pickle, asparagus... smells gross. (Don't like vinegar).
    **I don't like lettuce and other greens that carry more of a flavor are unappealing. And I really don't like cabbage.
    **I don't like ham and only eat it when my parents or in-laws serve it. I do like chicken, beef and pork. (I don't know what the deal is with my teeth or chewing movement, but if the meat is not fried, my chewing of the meat is sticky and the person across from me can actually hear the noise its making).
    **I like cheese, but if it's hot and melted onto something like pizza or cheddar like processed in a chunk or shred from the grocery story. Or like string cheese.
    **I don't like condiments like mayo, ketchup, mustard, ranch, dressings, etc. So that makes it really hard and non existent to eat burgers, sandwiches or salads.
    **I enjoy potatoes except sweet potato, but I'm sure too much of that is not exactly healthy. I can do pasta, but I don't like alfredo sauce, just red sauce. I can do rice, it's ok, I've only had white rice, never tried brown rice (which I've heard is healthier). And I'll do corn, but it can't be soft or creamed.
    ********I like sweets, and that's mostly what I eat along with the fried/greasy foods I eat. But it is in small portions, like my before mentioned breakfast and work snacks and if I eat candy it is like one bar (or a small few pieces of something like m&ms) in one sitting/day. And if I eat cookies or brownies, it's only like one or two brownies in the day and 1, 2 or 3 cookies in the day. I eat potato chips sometimes, but plain or cheddar pringles/ruffles/lays. None of that other stuff out there.
    **I'll eat hot cereal like oatmeal or farina, and cold cereal I'll do, but I'm picky on that too. I'll do english muffins, but I don't like cream cheese, I use sweet cookies butter.
    **I recently got into eggs (scrambled), but they're so bland and unappealing without being covered with cheese/salt/pepper/potato.
    **Spices are pretty much a no unless it is mild.

    ********I don't eat a lot of what I do eat, so that MAYbe helping my unhealthy progression being slower (and I really don't eat a whole lot on my two days off, just because I only buy enough lunch portions for work days and I don't want any of that outside of work and nothing is appealing, I want something hardy at home and everything is frozen/greasy and sweet). My portions are small, just because I get full pretty easy (except for when I make spaghetti, that I can eat a large serving of even though I get extra full off of it). I'm 5'5" 120lbs and almost 31. I like yoga and I want to do some cardio and muscle building/belly pudge reducing excercises (that I have saved on pinterest), and I really want to get into a routine of that, but it's hard because I only get two hours with my husband by the time I get home at 2 and he goes to bed at 4 (so I don't want to waste our very short time together). We eat supper at 3 and then while I wait for my supper to settle before exercising and getting sick, I'm getting very tired, sluggish and sleepy and often fall asleep on the couch. Which I know it is largely due to not eating right. (Plus we don't have central air/heating and it gets really expensive to run the base decks/box heaters and window air (with our old house that has thin walls and poor insulation), so it gets frigid in the house during cold season ((I get so cold with the such cold air in here that I wear 3 layers on my legs and 3 to 4 layers on my torso and tend to get under blanket and wear hoods from sweaters to keep that heat in, but hubby doesn't get as cold and layered up, but he's just stubborn)), which doesn't help my motivation).********

    Cooking is really scary, (and I watch a lot of cooking shows, mainly of the competition variety. My husband is always like, that looks so good, I want that, I wish I could have that, and I'm thinking, that looks gross!), but I would like to learn how so I can make meals on my two days off. My online searches have said to mask fruits and vegetables in your meals, but I don't know how, my searches haven't given incorporation/cooking tips. My diabetic friend has given me some tips (but she's all like, what are you going to do if you wind up diabetic? **She does eat healthy and avoids sweets, but she doesn't exactly exercise). She has suggested making smoothies with protein powder and hiding veggies in there (like I've read online). But what veggies and how do I break them down to get them to blend in and hide? And the only smoothie I could down would have to be chocolate/banana/peanut butter in flavor.
    I have indoor cooking appliances for doing steak, beef, pork, whatever and have recipe books and a couple things found on pinterest, but those recipes call for veggies on the side or as toppers. My grandma would often make golabki (beef wrapped in cabbage) but I would tear off and discard the cabbage.
    I would like to eat soup, but I don't like the veggie chunks that come along and the potato soups out there are so brothy and the potato chunks are so tiny and like 10% of the can. Would like to learn how to make potato soup and how to puree and hide the gross veggies in that.

    Soooo if anyone has any good tips about what foods I can buy to try and HOW to HIDE the gross and literally gaggy flavors, I would be so very grateful. (I really do want to eat healthy but if it tastes gross, I literally get gaggy if I try to force myself to eat it, I really hate it).

  • Well Dear, I'm going to tell you, first, that you're going to have to retrain your taste buds, so to speak. You've been eating processed, unhealthy, "fake" food for so long, you probably will have to reprogram your brain for what food actually tastes like, and feels like in your mouth. That's an unfortunate situation, and if you are committed, you can do it. You will however, have to endure some discomfort and unpleasant times.
    It's best you realize that, and be conscious of that as you move toward the changes and try new things.

    It will be hard for awhile, but so far, I haven't seen anyone that really committed to the change, get through the rough patch and come out with the same approach to food.
    You can do it, but be prepared for a serious challenge, a trying of your patience and a new time commitment and lifestyle. Stay with it. Don't give up and in a year, you'll be glad you did.

    I have done a lot of research and reading over the past couple years on healthy eating, and have made a lot of changes. All due to my own health concerns. So these are my findings, and others may have additional information. I've coached a few friends and acquaintances through the first steps in eating healthier. I hope I can help you too.

    Since you like oatmeal, let's start there. I buy the kind of oatmeal that has to be cooked. Yes, it takes 20 minutes rather than 2 but it's totally worth it. So, this is a great opportunity to start reading a label. Look for steel cut oats, or stone ground oats. They will be near your regular oats, as I'm guessing you buy the premade sugary packets or the quick oats now.

    Measure out your serving according to the label, and use milk rather than water to cook. Add extra milk btw, because it cooks down faster. I use almond or cashew milk, and increase by about 30%. Plus I prefer my oats less thickened.

    Peel and cut up an apple and banana and cook with the oats for the sweetener. They cook down and you hardly taste the fruit, but you get the sweetness. If you are making a serving or 2, one each (apple and banana) will provide enough sweetness. When it's almost done cooking, add some cinnamon, starting with about 1/2 teaspoon and stir in. You can add more or less with your preference. When you serve, sprinkle chopped walnuts on top. You can buy them pre-chopped or chop them while the oatmeal cooks. I also really love to top this with peaches and pecans or walnuts. I've done that with canned peaches when I didn't have apples or bananas. Buy the canned peaches not in heavy syrup, look for "in their own juice" or "light syrup" & read the ingredients to be sure no corn syrup or artificial sweeteners have been used. Sometimes pear juice has been added and that's no too bad.

    Does that sound like something you can do?

    This is versatile. Use water rather than milk if you prefer. I just think it makes a creamier result, and increased nutritional value.
    Skip the cinnamon if it's too big a step for you to start.
    Also, certain types of apples won't cook completely down, but they will be soft and if you chop them small, shouldn't give you that chunky texture you seem to dislike.

    Take small steps in this process, and don't expect to be on the right track any time soon. Baby steps, but consistent steps.
    You can do it!

    And again, I can't say it enough, you have to learn to recondition your taste. That's key for you I think.

    Questions about that recipe?
    I'm happy to help any way I can.


    • Nicole.....good advice from kitty

      did you eat this way as a child, also?
      have you tried any frts/veggies since you've been an adult or do these dislikes stem from childhood?

      if this comes from childhood, it can take up to 13 or so tries of a food for a child to get accustomed to a food
      a child may try a food once, say he doesn't like it, then it's never offered again

      there are cookbooks and suggestions for parents to also "hide" frts/veggies in foods, so you might want to try that
      what about cauliflower, squash, orange peppers, sweet onions?

      have you tried different ways to eat frt/veggies.....raw vs cooked, hot vs cold?
      petite versions are less strong such as petite brussels sprouts

      what kind of peas have you tried? fresh, frozen, or canned?


      • The first thing I would do is start taking a one a day vitamin pill with minerals. Part of what our body likes and dislikes is due to the lack of micronutrients including vitamins.
        I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience.
        Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot?

        From a speech by Patrick Henry on March 23, 1775 at St. John's Church, Richmond, Virginia


        • what kinds of lettuce have you tried?
          head lettuce will taste different than darker green leaf lettuce

          the more you eat something the more you might like it
          I love onions but only mostly use sweet onions, like a sweet white onion or vidalia
          our child only liked onion on certain things but I pretty much use onion for everything and other day when we had pierogies, saw our child actually took a scoop of onions to eat with pierogi, so is starting to like onions more

          I will steam some veggies like cauliflower and carrots together but don't let them get super soft, enough to stick fork in but not fall apart

          the small halo or cutie oranges are seedless and usually juicy
          we like the pink grapefruit, not white
          blueberries taste really good warm
          I'll warm some to eat by themselves or put on oatmeal, pineapple is good warm, also

          ....try different ways, textures (soft vs crunchy), warm vs cold, raw vs cooked
          good luck experimenting!
          Last edited by amy40; 01-16-2018, 10:08 AM.


          • apples so many varieties and they all taste different!
            try different ones

            Nicole Swanson
            hw is it going?


            • Thank you everyone for your input. It's so very hard to try stuff I don't like. Especially when it has an unappealing taste and texture. Some things I have tried recently but most of it stems from childhood, but I was forced to eat what I didn't like. Like peas were a forced food at every meal grandma made. I'm pretty sure they were always canned peas. I never liked canned cream corn or canned regular corn, but I liked corn on the cob. My mother in law gets frozen corn, and I like that.

              But for starters, I'm really looking for ways to hide it in meals. Like my friend, I told her about wanting to hide veggies, and maybe I could start with hiding veggies in my pasta sauce and asked her about how to go about doing that, along with getting the veggie spaghetti noodles. She told me to get carrots, celery and spinach and puree them up together, and that would make it blend up with the sauce and not know it's there.

              And I do take a daily multivitamin for women.


              • Originally posted by Nicole Swanson View Post
                I'm pretty sure they were always canned peas. I never liked canned cream corn or canned regular corn, .
                canned veggies do taste terrible; I grew up on canned ones so I understand!

                move to fresh or frozen veggies as they taste much better and won't be mushy and tasteless
                (as long as you don't overlook them)


                • I know it is possible to learn to like veggies
                  our child was never crazy about brussels spouts but we do eat a lot of broccoli, though (florets)

                  recently the frozen veggies were on sale and I let our child pick and choose out of the case
                  a brussels spouts pkg was also chosen as our child decided to try them again (petite ones)
                  I was surprised they were chosen and this time our child did like them!


                  • Nicole, I think you're just a bit unrealistic in some of your expectations here. You can mask some veggies in other foods, sure, but with the limited variety on what you WILL eat, that's going to be quite difficult, as I see it. At least in maintaining this over time. And when you are not cooking much, that adds another degree of difficulty. Did you try my suggestion? I think you should understand that changing the habits, improvement will take commitment and sacrifice on your part, daily. It's not always easy, and it requires a mature and steady approach with the goal of better health in mind.

                    As much as I understand your aversion to many foods, you're most certainly going to need to open up to the possibility of eating whole foods that you are not particularly fond of on occasion. We can retrain our pallets to like food that we don't find appealing. That's where the dedication comes in.

                    If you want to hide veggies in spaghetti sauce, simply puree them in a food processor and add them to the sauce. That's a pretty simple thing. But you will very likely taste the veggies that you have added. It will change the texture also. You could puree spinach, broccoli, carrot, etc. Try different things to see what you will be able to tolerate, to ease into the transition.


                    • Ok, thank you amy and kitty, not yet kitty, just read your message when I responded and haven't been to the store yet.


                      • This is really important for you to keep your diet well. Because whatever your body is facing it is facing due to it's energy. Diet is the main source of energy for the body. Diet is really necessary to control. I think you should eat fresh fruits like bananas , apple etc. You should have to take orange juice and pomegranate juice regularly. You really need to do it. Take care of your diet dear. This is important. Best of luck to you.


                        • I agree with you, atskitty2: I think Nicole does need to be realistic about what she needs to eat, by eating foods she isn't fond of.

                          I don't mean to talk in the third person, Nicole, but I do agree with atskitty2. It does sound very difficult for you to eat healthily if you won't eat vegetables and the odd piece of fruit. I don't know what you're going to do, but maybe test out those veggies and your taste in food may change!


                          • Personally, and I realise this is pretty basic, I believe that the best way of eating (and nutrition) is to eat 'natural' food. That is, vegetables, protein, healthy fat etc. Avoid at all cost sugar and all foods containing such, and especially seed oils like sunflower oil etc , absolutely minimise carbohydrate intake like bread, rice, pasta etc.

                            Sugar is a poison and will kill you just as surely as smoking tobacco. Carbohydrates have been pushed heavily by the 'so called' health industry for decades. Think about the food pyramid the 'health lobby' has promoted world wide for many years. "Eat plenty of fruit, grain bread and starches etc they say" ABSOLUTE RUBBISH! Fruit contains massive amounts of sugar and should be consumed moderately. Carbs quickly turn to glucose (sugar) when consumed and will spike insulin, and insulin is the 'fat accumulation' hormone.

                            In fact studies have found that higher insulin levels, released when eating carbs, actually cause the accumulation of fat and result in obesity. This has been shown to be far more important in fat accumulation than any lifestyle factors.

                            When I shop I avoid the aisles in supermarkets. They are loaded with unhealthy, processed food choices. Shop around the perimeter of supermarkets, choosing meat, fish, dairy products and vegetables etc. The human species has eaten this way for thousands of years (okay not from supermarkets) and remained lean and healthy. The worldwide 'obesity epidemic' in western society began coincidentally, at the time we adopted the US Govt. healthy food recommendation of basing our diet on the consumption of carbohydrates.

                            There endeth this lesson


                            • I don't believe that carbohydrates are something to be avoided anymore than I believe fats are something to be avoided. Billions of people are people are alive with diets based on starchy staple foods. Most are relatively healthy and would be healthier with greater access to modern medicines. The key is moderation. All things in moderation. Modern processed foods have excesses of sugars and salts. They should be eaten sparingly. Being lean later in life has been shown to create shorter lifespans than being slightly overweight. My best guess on this is that being slightly overweight gives a person the reserves to overcome an illness that would kill a leaner person in some cases.
                              I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience.
                              Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot?

                              From a speech by Patrick Henry on March 23, 1775 at St. John's Church, Richmond, Virginia


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