Saturday, September 20, 2014
Me and Mom...not two peas in a pod
I watch different “experts” argue back and forth about what is causing this and I think “duh”. It’s not even an argument, the difference in the world since I was a child and now is extreme. We had P.E. (Physical Education) in school as a normal, required part of the curriculum. Our mothers ran us outside to go play, we rode bikes and ran around playing tag and keep away and dodge ball. We had home cooked meals, not carb-laden pizza, chicken nuggets, burgers and fries! That’s the difference! Our bread turned green if we didn’t use it within a few days, now products are filled with preservatives and a loaf of bread will last for weeks before it even begins to turn green.
Being a single working mom I can remember stopping on the way home to pick up a pizza or some burgers because I was too tired to stop and pick up fresh food and go home and cook, it was just easier to feed my kids fast food, so I’m definitely not pointing fingers here as I did the same things a lot of parents out there are doing. But…that is not why I’m writing this today or why the above quote is relevant. The quote is relevant because of my mother and because of me.
Mom lives with me and from childhood she has been a picky eater. She’s told me stories of when she was a young girl and they would have a family get together where everyone would bring a potluck dish and she would be disgusted by most of them, she was happy with just beans and tortillas. That hasn't changed much at all, she is still happy with just beans and tortillas. The problem is that beans and tortillas are not cutting it nutritionally for mom. The food she is choosing to eat now is not good medicine for her, it’s not healthy and that worries me like crazy.
She has many stomach issues and I try to explain to her that maybe she needs to not eat so many glutens and I explain to her what glutens are and what foods they are in, which is most of the food she eats which is mainly a diet based on grains. She lives on tortillas, flour tortillas. Bread, cereal, cookies, chocolate muffins, canned biscuits, macaroni and cheese (from a box!), instant pancake mix, pastas, pastries, potato chips, corn chips. She lives on processed meats, bologna, deli ham, hot dogs, chorizo, sausage, canned Spam and pepperoni. She will not eat a piece of chicken to save her life and she would rather die than ever eat fish! She won’t eat ground beef, turkey or chicken. She might eat a piece of beef here and there but it has to be cooked to the consistency of charcoal. She will eat pork chops, but again they are cooked to shoe leather.
It is so difficult to watch her be in pain and to know that she won’t help herself by eating healthier. And mom is not a wimp…she has smoked since the age of 14 and two years ago she quit, cold turkey! Just decided to stop and has not picked up a cigarette since. I am so proud of her accomplishing that and I feel terrible nagging her to eat better when she has already made such a huge sacrifice in giving up smoking!
If mom had her way she would be happy if she never had to take a bite of food again in her life and could just take a pill that would ease her hunger and provide all her nutrition for the day. She hates food!!
I often kid with her that fate has put two very mismatched people together. Mom hates food. Because of her metabolism she can eat all those carb laden foods I wrote about above, she can eat candy, pretty much anything she wants and she doesn't gain weight, but the fact of the matter is that she doesn't want anything. On the other hand, I love food, love it! Love the taste and textures of so many foods and I can’t eat them! I have to watch every bite I put into my mouth. I have to count carbs and plan ahead if I am going to eat out. I want to eat everything I see, but I can't eat any of it!!! That's just not fair!!
Anyone else have problems with picky older eaters? What do you do to help them eat healthier?