My Foodie Life – Free Press of Jacksonville

Black Bean Burger (Photos by Schavonna Williams @ fulloflifewellness)

By Lenora Howze, AFRO Managing Director [email protected] – (Source: – AFRO – My mother wasn’t one who showed feelings or said “I love you” very often. Among other things, she showed her love for our family with a warm, home-cooked meal EVERY evening, even when she had to work as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) on the night shift. For me, food was much more than a source of food. It was security. It was love

Swedish meatballs with lentils and mushrooms (photos by Schavonna Williams @ fulloflifewellness)Swedish meatballs with lentils and mushrooms (photos by Schavonna Williams @ fulloflifewellness)

For as long as I can remember, and long before the word “gourmet” was added to our dictionary, I’ve had a love for food. Some like it, okay, they called it excessive. As I grew up and at every family dinner, I was expected to eat everyone at the table, including my father. Going back seconds or even thirds was the norm for me. We didn’t have a lot of money, and I’m sure my hard-working parents sometimes wondered if they could afford to feed me. With three other kids to feed, I’m not sure how they did it.

Black Bean Burger (Photos by Schavonna Williams @ fulloflifewellness)

My love affair with food continued into my adulthood, although I did not always consume it in the healthiest ways. The food became more than something to please my taste buds. It became a source of comfort when I was sad. There was something to be done when I was bored, even when I wasn’t hungry. I am going to stress reliever? FRIED. CHICKEN. WING. With fries, of course (also known as the Baltimorean chicken crate).

Eating regularly like this eventually caught up with me, but not in the way you might think. Yes, I’ve gained a few pounds over the years, but for the most part, I’ve kept the same weight and size of clothes for most of my life (after 30 years). A naturally high metabolism hid a hard truth: I had a problem with eating.

One day, during a period of intense spiritual examination, the truth caught up with me, interestingly, while enjoying a wonderful (and HUGE) meal. I suddenly had this overwhelming feeling of conviction about my unhealthy relationship with food. It wasn’t just about the amount or type of food that made it unhealthy. It was my lack of discipline about what, when, and how much I was going to eat. I knew things had to change. And they did.

Don’t get me wrong, I still LOVE food and am still known as the one who can eat more than most. The difference is that I have power in this “relationship” and not the other way around. I decide when to go all out with a ā€œhigh-fat and high-calorieā€ meal or whether to just have a plate of vegetables for dinner. Recently, I even tried some vegan dishes under the supervision of my friend and health and wellness trainer Schavonna Williams. Schavonna assured me that a healthy, plant-based diet doesn’t have to be tasteless and boring, so I was ready to give it a try. She was right. Everything we did was full of flavor.

Veggie Krapfen (photos by Schavonna Williams @ fulloflifewellness)

Do not get me wrong. I have no intention of completely giving up my chicken crate. I only add a side of quinoa and edamame every now and then.

The post A Delicious Love Affair: My Life as a Foodie first appeared on Afro.

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