We are now officially well in to the Lenten season and I find myself chuckling every time I think of me explaining to someone what exactly I am fasting from this year. The thought occurred to me to give up junk food weeks before Ash Wednesday. It seemed quite simple and perfect, that is before I had to start defining 'junk food'. It has such a broad definition, with everyone having different ideas of what it means. So here, for anyone who actually cares, is a quick breakdown of what I have given up and what stays:
The pop, chips and cookies in the office.
One of the hardest things for me when I joined my current firm, was being able to say 'no thank you' with so much food floating around. Plus, snacks are ordered weekly for the entire office. Guess who orders said snacks?- yes, yours truly. So the fact that I have not had any of these items since my fast is actually really good, because the convenience factor alone makes this hard.
The brownies from Whole Foods.
This item alone is what started the debate. I had, for the first time, a fresh, moist and oh so gooey chocolate brownie from Whole Foods only two days before Ash Wednesday. From that moment on I thought to myself- A1: this is the best freakin' brownies I have ever had. (I am a brownie lover, so that says a lot.) B2: to remove this from my diet indefinitely would be a sin in itself. So although I have not had this again since that day, I would hate to have to turn it down should the opportunity arise.
The Sea Salt Caramel Gelato from Whole Foods.
This item was consumed and introduced to me the same day as the above mentioned brownie. The fact that eaten together, these two taste divine, is reason enough to keep my options open on this one as well. Like the brownie, I have not experienced this slightly salty, yet sweet snack since that day, but I think about it- often. The argument I have for the Whole Foods treats is that they do not use 'junk' in their products. The fact that something is a sweets item does not make it junk.
My normal candy fixes.
These include, but are not limited to: gummy bears, Twizzlers, Symphony chocolate bars from Hershey's, Now and Laters, Sour Straws, fruit snacks, etc. I have not had any of these. This is big, because I do like to munch during the day and it is readily available.
I am game when it comes to this one. Because pizza does not have to be non-nutritious. This gives me a pass for the deep dish with spinach and garlic from Barraco's, the thin crust from Lou Malnati's and the extra thick thin crust sausage and pepperoni from Beggar's that I heartily ate all within a week and a half period. I really could slow down on the pizza.
Cocktails, beer and wine.
Are all a 'go'.
I have been told anything that does not add nutritional value to your diet could be considered junk food. With that ideology, my 2012 Lenten season would be a very long one. The office snacks alone are so monumental. Yes, I know my list contradicts itself at times, but in truth, I feel like I have done really well. Although it all sounds like food strategizing at every turn, it works for me. What have you given up or added for Lent?