Garbage In – Garbage Out

What comes to mind when you hear that phrase? I was in the computer field for 12 years while I was in the Marine Corps, so I think of computers. I’ve come to realize this past month or so that this phrase applies to so much more. This same adage can be applied to our bodies, businesses, families and so much more, but for today I’m just going to talk about our bodies.

In April my husband went out-of-town on business for the whole month. I tend to eat junk when I’m bored, lonely, or for any reason, so I challenged him to a weight loss contest. I took it seriously and started counting calories and eating healthier foods. I knew I felt better but I didn’t realize the outward effect it was having on me until my daughter asked me what I was doing,  she said “You have so much more energy”.  All I was doing was eating small healthy meals and heathy snacks. 

When I started school recently I started snacking on unhealthy foods again. I sure could tell a difference! Remember Julia Roberts in “Pretty Women” when she walks in to the boutique on Rodeo Drive that wouldn’t help her pick out cloths on her first shopping trip. She goes back the next day, dressed to the 9’s, hand full of bags, and tells the lady who wouldn’t wait on her “Big, Big mistake! Huge!” I actually see that scene flash through my mind when I reach for a bag of Pretzel M&Ms at the store.  Are the few minutes of gratification really worth the sugar crash after words! Garbage In- Garbage Out!

Do yourself a favor and find some healthier snacks to keep on hand.  I like Fiber One bars, Oats and Chocolate are my favorite.  I have also recently gotten turned on to Amway’s meal bars.   I can keep them in my purse and book bag.  Start your day with a low sugar breakfast, oatmeal with fruit works for me.  What about lunch, try to have a light lunch.  To much, high fat, high carbs food will make you sleepy, and if you’re anything like me that will cause you to reach for the sugary snacks.  For most of us our day doesn’t end at dinner, so when you’re preparing your meal or looking at the menu, realize that whatever you eat is either going to give you the energy you need to keep going and focus or its going to make you wish it was nap time.  Lets face it, we are what we eat, not literally of course but, if we put garbage in our bodies we are going to get garbage for energy out!  What healthy snacks do you keep on hand to avoid the sugar trap?


35 Responses to Garbage In – Garbage Out

  1. You have a ton more discipline than I have! I have the same weaknesses with eating – lonely bored or for any reason. I’ve tried eating apples and bananas and yogurt but it just ain’t the same.

    I also like the same Fiber One bars but I started getting them at Costco and went through them like there was no tomorrow. That may be high in fiber and (relatively) low in calories but when you eat 5 a day it adds up.

    Nice reminder, though, to get a program and stick to it. What kills me is that it takes so long to take off and it’s so quick to put it back on. 😦

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Ken, I think writing down the calories, was like having an accountability partner! Besides, I was thilled with the results, 18 lbs down, about 10 to go. I had to laugh about the Fiber One bars, I was up to 3 a day before I had to find a different snack. The nice thing about the Fiber One bars though is that they’re portable. When I’m home I enjoy Dannon’s Greek yogurt and Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches. It wasn’t until I added junk back into my diet that realized how bad it made me feel. Someone I know suggested vitamins, when I told her how eating junk made me feel, but why not just eat more food in they’re natural state.

      I love Amway’s meal bars, I buy the mixed box so I have a variety.

  2. Great post on staying the course! Perfect timing too as I’ve committed myself to eating healthier and being more active.

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Merlyn, thats great. I’ve just begun and slip up a lot but now I have a better understand as to why I feel like I do and how much better I’ll feel if I make the right choice about what I eat.

  3. What a timely reminder! And funny how that always happens (synchronicity). I have been really off for the past few weeks – school vacation often does that for me and I have been so very busy with my AuPair business. I must go back to eating healthily, I always feel so much better when I do. I hate those kind of bars though. A few brazil nuts, edamame, protein shakes with non fat yogurt and frozen berries are all healthy snacks that I like. Going to get back to it tomorrow!

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Love when that happens! I do enjoy my non fat yogurt, just finished one while I was reading your comment! I wish I could eat frozen berries but I have sensitive teeth, but I do like to put them in my oatmeal for breakfast. What sort of protein shake do you use? I’ve tried a few but none that really had me coming back for more.

      • I make my own with vanilla whey protein powder, frozen berries and non fat yogurt. Just throw them in the blender. I don’t like the pre made ones – and this is where I get the frozen berries in – I don’t eat them frozen 🙂

      • Jean Bentley says:

        My son actually eats strawberries right from the freezer! I have used whey protein powder, but haven’t added berries and yogurt! I’ll have to give it a try.

  4. Donna McCord says:

    This is really timely for me; my husband decided he needed to lose weight, and I had a few stubborn pounds I wanted to lose also, so we are on a high protein, low carb diet that includes fruit and veggies and leaves out pasta, rice and other high carb foods that I usually love! The funny thing is that since we have been eating more healthy meals, we are not craving the sweets and other foods we used to eat all the time, and we have both lost weight, plus have more energy! We are also drinking lots of water, which I think helps too. It’s good to know that there are a lot of other people out there, like you! that are discovering how we eat impacts how we feel.

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Donna, That’s wonderful, congratulations! Isn’t funny how when we’re eating sweets we crave them but when we get through the first few days with out them our body no longer wants them. My husband still isn’t on board, hopefully soon.

  5. Exercise has helped me focus on eating better. I work so hard at my new exercise program that the thought of mucking it up with bad food seems like a colossal waste. My favorite snacks are nuts and peanut butter and apples. You are so right about the garbage in, garbage out analogy…even though the garbage can taste oh so good going in…if we remember how bad it feels just 10 minutes after, we will all be healthier in no time.

  6. I believe the body is a temple, one has to pay attention to what one eats. Of course that is definitely easier said than done LOL. I love chocolate and desserts. I try not to eat in between meals. My meals are pretty healthy. I try to stay away from processed foods. Wish I could give up bread. I do love fruit & nuts, I think about my dad saying “everything in moderation” to many nuts arent good either. I had to laugh reading your “big mistake ” line. Great way to stop those sweet snacks from winning. It helps to drink water when l feel the urge to snack. Lots of mirrors help too. Every time I see my reflection I wonder when, when am I going to get down and dirty and diet and really exercise? and I know the answer lies in my mind.

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Jen, I agree with your dad, every thing in moderation. My problem is, I’m not good at moderation. If the junk is in the house I’ll eat it usually before I eat anything else. I do love raw almonds – but I have to count out 20 and put the bag away otherwise moderation goes right out the window.

  7. You are so right–what we put into ourselves affects us profoundly. I gave up sugar and flour products because they were driving my life. It takes planning and commitment but what I get in return is huge. It’s not that I want to be so “pure”–those foods just really kill me. I sacrifice convenience but get a good deal in return.

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Judy, you hit the nail on the head, we have to plan! If we don’t plan our meals and snacks we tend to grab whatever is handy. Today I have the honor of watching my grandson all day. My daughter does not eat like I do so I brought my turkey and sweet potato fries with me from home so I wouldn’t be tempted to eat the processed, easy to prepare foods. My little grandson loved them both, he didn’t eat his green bean though. Frankly I don’t blame him, tried some frozen, single serving thingy, not so great! (I didn’t eat them either!)

  8. Wonderful post, Jean, and I agree with you 100%!

    I’m vegetarian, and, when shopping, I stay to the perimeter. Meaning, minimal processed food (except my favorite whole-wheat sourdough bread!). Fruits, veggies, grains, beans & dairy pretty much make up my diet. (ok…here’s the confessional moment—I have weakness for ice cream & good beer!!)

    Like Louise, I often make a fruit protein shake in the morning. I can sip on breakfast as I write at my computer. Delicious & convenient! Favorite no-fuss, high protein snacks for me, include happy cow cheese, and hummus with baby carrots.

    Good luck with your new regime! If you need any high-protein/low fat meat-free recipes, I’d be happy to share some with you.

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Hiedi, I’ve heard that the best way to shop is on the perimeter! That where all the whole, unprocessed foods are. Like the cheese and baby carrots idea, not a big fan of hummas, but maybe if I kept it on hand, my husband would have choose healthier snacks.

      I’d love a copy of some of your recipes. I have fallen into a rut with the same foods. Boring is hard to stick with!

    • Haha – I read Heidi’s comment in my email as ‘I have a weakness for ice cream and good beer – like Louise’ – I told you we have a lot in common Heidi 🙂

      • Jean Bentley says:

        No a big beer fan but I do like my ice cream! I usually stick wth Skinny Cow or Weight Watchers though. Just so I don’t feel so quilty afterwards.

  9. Congratulations on working towards weight loss. I have recently lost 50 pounds and still have a long journey. I LOVE the 30 day Isagenix cleanse and would love to share it with you. I came across your bog on Ann’s blogger Monday to promote my business blog and read other business blogs, but I am excited to see this. I would like to share with you my weight loss blog

    I look forward to reading many more post of total success!

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Hope, Congratulations on your 50 pound weight loss, that is awesome! I’m holding steady at 18 lbs down, but would like to lose about 10 more. I’ll check out you blog on weight loss.

  10. Ron Britton says:

    Jean, very good advice here. I eat a relatively good diet, do have me weaknesses. What really did it for me was exercise. Being active makes all the difference.

    Agreed you need to give your body the best fuel that you can. Combine that with a modest exercise routine and you have a formula for a heath you.

    Follow the Quest –

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Thanks Ron for the comments. Exercise and being active is very important. When we’re tired and think we don’t have the energy to execise, if we’ll just go do something we’ll have more energy when we’re done that we did when we started.

  11. Peggy Maffeo says:

    Hi Jean, great post! I can so relate to what you’re saying and can’t believe this is one of the blogs to read for Blogger Monday because I started a healthier diet this past weekend. So the universe is telling me it’s meant to be.

    Thanks for sharing,

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Peggy, I’m so glad in rang true with you. Keep me posted on how you’re feeling. I was watching a news show the other week and they said that day 3 is usually the hardest because your body is going from using sugar as energy to using fat. To me its great motivation to get through that initial rough period.

  12. Hi Jean. Good thoughts. I have been using Balance and Zone bars, muscle milk and other balance or high protein since 1996. Makes a difference.

  13. Planning my meals is the biggest problem I have. I generally eat vegies, yogurt and fruit for breakfast and lunch. My most difficult time is in the evening. If I haven’t planned my meal a head of time I usually fix pasta. Can you suggest great foods to have on hand for a poor meal planner ?

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Julia, That sounds like us! Pasta is such an easy, quickly fixed meal! Plus for most of us its a comfort food. My husband or I usually bake a turkey breast for a package of chicken breasts, and have the meat on a salad or mixed with some frozen vegetables. Maybe not the best choice but I don’t get the carb como like I do after pasta. I also try to keep cut up salad stuff on hand. I like precut my celery and carrots, and sometimes tomatoes. When I get up, I just clean on cut up some romaine lettuce (or use the precut bagged), heat up my turkey or chicken, add that to the lettuce and throw on some celery, carrots and craisens and I’m ready to sit dowon and eat in less than 10 minutes. I also LOVE!!!! Green Giants Healthy Weight veggetables, I heat those up and some heated up turkey or chicken and dinner is ready. Don’t get me wrong I don’t eat this well every night, but having some sort of healthy meat (my husband has to have meat at dinner) already prepared makes dinner most nights a breeze!

  14. Jean I’m a practitioner of good health and have led several thousand participants through programs designed to enhance their life through increased physical activity and healthy eating.

    I have tons to say on the subject and yet you said it simply – which is an art. Thanks.

  15. Great post Jean- I’m with Ron here. I eat quite healthy (I’ve been vegetarian since 1971 although I did add chicken when my body demanded it when I was pregnant!) but it’s the EXERCISE that gets me. This is especially true when sitting behind a computer all day which I seem to find myself doing.

    When I exercise, keeping control of everything is easy. When I don’t, it tends to get out of hand. I know I should do it, but don’t :(. Good reminder that I really have to take charge!

    Candace Davenport ~ Little Books with a Big Message

    • Jean Bentley says:

      Candace, I know what you mean. The only exersice I do is walking the dog in the morning, but it sets the tone for the entire day. I have taken a day off on the weekend and it takes me a lot longer to get going and because my energy is lower, I tend to give in to the quick, easy, and usually not as healthy foods.

  16. Oh, yikes! Does this mean I am garbage? I am half kidding, half-not. I’ll admit, I have gotten lazy. I’m not eating was well as I should. I’m not exercising as much as I should. And… I am feeling the effects. Time to get cracking and take out the trash!

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