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Are there things you eat/avoid every day to be healthy?

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I know a guy at work who has to eat 10 specific things every day.

1. oatmeal
2. blueberries
3. flax seed
4. avocado
5. sweet potato
6. grapefruit
7. mackerel or sardines
8. green apple
9. banana
10. I am forgetting the last thing

He also take lots of vitamins and supplements.

Are there specific foods you eat every day to be healthy? And what are the things that you avoid every day that you consider unhealthy?

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  1. I know a couple of people like this, and they do seem to be more of the "eat to live" as opposed to "live to eat"... same foods day in and day out, little variety.

    As for inclusion, mine are more in the general variety, as someone who doesn't eat meat, I have to make sure I get enough protein a day, something that's even more of a priority now that I'm on chemo. I make an effort to get all my fruits and vegetables into my system, have some dairy, and hopefully some whole grains.

    In my mind, there isn't a "wonder food" ... it's variety that matters. *shrug* ....but i'm no expert.

    As for exclusion, no more soy for me. Not because I consider it unhealthy per se, it's doctor's orders. Ditto for flax, but I really don't care about that one.

    5 Replies
    1. re: im_nomad

      I have two things on my list that I must have every day
      Water
      multivitamin

      other than that I also think that eating foods as close to their original state as I can, and eating a great variety of foods is the most important thing

      I think (and I'm not a food scientist or a researcher) that there are different benefits for each vegetable, fruit and whole grain... eating as much of a variety that you can would be important to reaping those benefits to the fullest extent.

      (plus I'd get bored eating the same stuff day in and day out)

      1. re: cgarner

        Don't Eat
        Sugar
        Anything White (and no sister, this does not mean "halibut")
        corn products

        1. re: janetms383

          Anything white? So...no milk, grits, yogurt, apples (except for the peel), eggs (except for the yolk)? And no salt? This is a bit too restrictive for me.

          1. re: small h

            And feta, cream freeeesh, mayonnaise, cream cheese, kohlrabi, belgian endive, cauliflower... whoa. Those are some of my favorite things.

            I try not to eat too many black things. And no - that's not a racist comment.

            1. re: linguafood

              You can pry my queso blanco out of my cold, dead hands. And last I checked, garlic was looking mighty melanin-challenged. Not giving that up, either.

    2. I'd guess his #10 to be kale.

      Only 2 things that I consume daily would be water and a single multivitamin. On weekdays mornings, blueberries, banana, egg, spinach and tomato are common/routine and milk finds its way later on in the day.

      In the big picture, everything is unhealthy when consumed in excess and most things are fine in moderation. So, while it's not a bad idea, making a list isn't really a good idea. It's certainly not something I'd do unless I'm on an ultra-serious training program.

      1. hell yes...though I'm not as regimented as your co-worker...I need to change stuff up as far as daily vegetables/ fruits/lean protein but to include every day: lots of water and 3 cups of green tea with fresh lemon, no sugar. Pretty much what I avoid every day is white sugar (am not perfect on that but have learned to say no to cookies/bagels/cakes that are always present at work) and fast food.

        1. Like a lot of people around here, I avoid transfats and HFCS, and I try to minimize overly processed foods.

          I eat yogurt most days, but the only thing I eat every day is chocolate -- it's necessary for my mental health.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Ruth Lafler

            I soooo agree. Plus think of all the extra benefits dark chocolate offers! I think my friends realize that if I was deprived of chocolate it would be scary...

            1. re: cioccolata

              In addition to the mental health benefits and antioxidants, dark chocolate is a decent source of fiber. Seriously, an ounce of 70% cocoa content chocolate has ~3g fiber.

              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                Yes, I was discussing this on FB the other day ... my Lindt 90% has 5 g fiber and 3 g sugar...but I was remarking that even the "junky" dark Hershey's kisses that someone brought into the office have decent fiber (but waaay too much sugar for ME, anyway).

          2. I consume zero pre-processed/packaged foods, no fast foods, and minimal amounts of simple sugars.

            I eat broccoli, eggs, oatmeal, and coffee daily.

            http://uhockey.blogspot.com

            16 Replies
            1. re: uhockey

              wow, i find that hard to beleve you never consume anything that's pre-processed/pre-packaged. Do you ever eat out? Even the highest quality places use some packaged goods that are still high quality.

              1. re: spinachandchocolate

                If you check out his blog, you'll see that he does eat out! Has written up some nice restaurant reviews, it seems!

                1. re: spinachandchocolate

                  If its not in that blog then it has been made by myself from items I know to be of quality.

                  http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                  1. re: uhockey

                    Sorry, even the "finest" most high quality restaurants use pre-packaged good. I worked in one of the most regarded restaurants in NYC at one point and that's just how it is. Maybe rephrase your statement.

                2. re: uhockey

                  You don't even eat any canned foods such as tomatoes, tuna fish, sardines, anchovies or beans? It is hard to find all those items fresh year round.

                  1. re: escondido123

                    I think by pre-processed/packaged, uhockey might mean convenience items, not ingredient items, such as canned tomatoes. I use canned tomatoes or beans, for instance, but I never buy a prepared entree containing them.

                    1. re: mcf

                      yes, mcf...that's my understanding of it too.

                    2. re: escondido123

                      I do use canned tomatoes and frozen vegetables, but that is not "pre-packaged" or "processed" - merely preserved.

                      http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                      1. re: uhockey

                        I consider a can a package, and frozen vegetables come in a box--and they've certainly both been run through a processing plant...guess we just have different ways of defining those terms..

                        1. re: uhockey

                          How about pickles, mayonnaise, chutney, ketchup, mustard, garlic bean paste and the like? They are all created using a recipe, processed under heat and sold--thank God I don't have to make them all on my own unless I want to.

                          1. re: escondido123

                            ....I don't eat those.

                            I consider processed to contain myriad unnecessary ingredients: My green beans say "Ingredients: Green Beans" .........but they are frozen.

                            http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                            1. re: escondido123

                              I think you're off on an irrelevent tangent here. uhockey isn't eschewing every ingredient that has packaging, but is using whole, fresh foods or good quality, unadulterated packaged ingredient foods that retain their characteristics and quality.

                              1. re: mcf

                                Well then that makes him like many of us.

                                1. re: escondido123

                                  Yes, exactly!

                                  1. re: escondido123

                                    Then Why the attack? How does my eschewing products that contain 10 extra ingredients bother you? Frozen or canned produce is essentially the same as fresh.

                                    http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                                    1. re: uhockey

                                      I assumed that when you wrote "I consume zero pre-processed/packaged foods, no fast foods, and minimal amounts of simple sugars" that you were stating that because it was something unusual, something other people didn't do. Clearly, you do eat packaged foods, so maybe that was the point of confusion. Sorry that I misunderstood. All the best.

                        2. I make sure to get plenty of protein, veggies and fats (no transfats, meat and dairy grass fed as much as possible) and avoid eating any starches or sugars.

                          1. coffee. Oh did you ask healthy or sane?

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: tzurriz

                              It is cardioprotective, full of healthy antioxidants, anorectic, and may prevent the onset of diabetes (provided you aren't chugging the Venti mocha latte) - I say both.

                              http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                              1. re: uhockey

                                And just like chocolate, it's not just for breakfast any more! :-)

                              2. re: tzurriz

                                Oh, A-freaking-men on that one.

                              3. Must consume:
                                1. water
                                2. coffee
                                3. banana. I feel "off" if I don't have a banana everyday. Strange.

                                Avoid:
                                1. cigarettes. Not trying to be funny, or anything like that. I AM avoiding cigarettes.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: Eat.Choui

                                  A friend who works the drug industry once told me that the make up of the latest anti-depressants that his company was innovating was almost the same as what one would get from eating a banana. So, it might be that you're getting a bit of a happiness boost from your daily fruit!

                                  1. re: Eat.Choui

                                    Since when is eating cigarettes bad for you? Low calorie, lots of fiber.

                                  2. I eat all of the things on your posted list and #10 for me would be Greek yogurt.
                                    The only thing I avoid is stress and certain foods make me feel off/stressed afterwards. Yoga, meditation and work (in that order) at some pt every day. Or I do feel off. I have never taken a vitamin/suppl. in my life. Get all I need from food.

                                    I will say this, I cook/bake/prepare far more food off the list than I personally consume. If I ate all of the baked goods and recipes I prepare for my family and others I would be unhealthy for my size/comfortable body weight/frame. I eat spoonfuls; not platefuls.

                                    1. I avoid butter so I can justify my consumption of delicious cheese. I applaud that 'guy at work' for being able to adhere to such a strict regimen and hopefully it will contribute to his longevity and good health. He's likely an IRONMAN.

                                      4 Replies
                                      1. re: Cheese Boy

                                        But would you want to sit next to him at a dinner party? We were at a dinner party a month ago and the other couple kept saying things like "Oh, salmon, great we're getting our Omega 3s" and "Spinach (or whatever) that's good for colon health." It did not make for pleasant dinner conversation but they seemed oblivious LOL

                                        1. re: escondido123

                                          Oh I agree with you, it's not dinner conversation. Enjoy the meal and don't yuck my yum, def.!

                                          1. re: escondido123

                                            Yabbut, that's not because they're eating healthy, it's because they're obnoxious, period!

                                            1. re: escondido123

                                              Sounds like my mom. Gah!

                                          2. I used to do a list like this (with a few more things -- lentils, brown rice, spinach, broccoli, hard squash, other veggies, etc.), but for the WEEK rather than daily. Gave me a lot more variety day by day and made sure that I was still eating well. I definitely think a positive approach to eating is better than a negative one, i.e., "Here are all the yummy foods I get to eat all the time," vs. "Oh, no, I can't eat THAT or THAT or THAT..."

                                            During the week, I do the No-S diet -- no snacks, seconds, or sweets. On weekends and special days, I eat sweets and snacks in moderation. Because I get one plate, three times a day, I find myself *wanting* lots of different kinds of food on my plate. I usually have greens, beans/lentils, and whole grains on my plate, and sometimes meat or another protein. I really think it's a matter of focus rather than a strict inclusion/exclusion paradigm.

                                            I do try to avoid unfermented soy, junk meat, fast food, HFCS, processed foods, etc., but again, it's a focus thing. I don't really think about "Oh I can't eat this or that."

                                            1. I drink no sweetened or artificially sweetened beverages - not even fruit juices. Sweetened beverages are a waste of calories in my book, and I'm convinced artificial sweeteners are not healhy. I used to be a diet soda addict, but I gave it up almost cold turkey about 2-1/2 years ago and have had maybe a total of 10 since then - I really don't even like it any more, and my acid reflux has been significantly better without it. Thankfully I've never liked my coffee (which I drink very little of), or my tea (which I drink a lot of) sweetened.

                                              1. Chocolate. In the 85% + range. Yum. And I make the vast majority of food I eat (90+%)... I like to think that goes a long way too :)

                                                1. My dad eatsonly fresh fruit for breakfast every morning and then takes Vitamin D and E.

                                                  Then he eats anything he wants, including real butter, red meat, packaged cookies, ice cream and enjoys a Manhattan every evening. Two on Sundays.

                                                  He would tell you this himself (heaven knows he has told me often enough!), but he is too busy hiking before he packs for the cruise he and my step-mom are taking to Turkey before they make it back to the UK just in time to give his great niece away at her wedding and all this happens wile he is prepping the article he is writing for a magazine he contributes to on bird-watching.

                                                  (Did I mention that he visits "the old chaps" in the Veterans home? and follows the latest news from Egypt on his laptop?)

                                                  I would be going to visit him for his 90th birthday next month if he wasn't going to the 70th Renunion of the mates he flew with in WWII...

                                                  5 Replies
                                                  1. re: LJS

                                                    Thank you, LJS...your Dad is an inspiration...live and enjoy your life to the fullest.
                                                    I think laughter is an everyday necessity...not always available, but always needed!

                                                    1. re: cheeseisheaven

                                                      Why thank you! Your name is inspirational on SO many levels...we (a group of friends known as the Irreverent Reverends) once held a party where the cheese tray was labeled
                                                      "What a Friend We Have in Cheeses!"

                                                    2. re: LJS

                                                      I want to be your dad when I grow up!
                                                      btw...I'm in my mid 40s.

                                                      1. re: LJS

                                                        My 96 year old grandpa was the same way. HOWEVER, please know this comes down to genetics. Most peoples' diets do affect their healthy/energy.

                                                        1. re: spinachandchocolate

                                                          Oh, I would not in any way diasgree with you, SpinChoc...my Dad's family includes several centenarians and most of the family live to 88+. However, though I stressed what he does eat and drink as being on many people's hit lists of food toxins: red meat, the cookies and that daily dose of alcohol, I should set the record straight.

                                                          Dad is not into sauces of any kind (rich, heavy gravy or cream sauce NEVER touch his food).

                                                          He is and always was a 'square' meal guy: 1 meat, 1 potato, 2 veg--that is what our dinner plates looked like and how he still prefers to eat. Casseroles are 'suspect' and fried foods just don't happen. Stews, for some reason are considered okay.

                                                          His idea of a rich dessert is (brace yourself!): 1 scoop of vanilla ice cream with fruit cocktail on top....when I was a kid THIS was considered a birthday treat.

                                                          And when I said he eats packaged cookies, I should have said 'cookie'...when you visit and are asked "Would you like a cookie?", you are going to get A cookie.

                                                          The only time I ever saw 'junk' food in my family home was if parents were having a party: then 1 bowl of chips and 1 of party-mix was put out along with the requisite 'relish tray'(still have that dish with the compartments for carrots, celery, etc)

                                                          We never had pop or chips in the house, otherwise, and chocolate bars and ice cream cones were for Sunday treats, only.

                                                          At Christmas, oranges and apples were put in the toes of our stockings because to my Dad, who had come through the war in Britain, fresh fruit was (and is!) a miracle. He still gets all excited to take me to the farm market in his hometown to count the number of varietal apples available.

                                                          I hadn't thought about these things in this way, as contributing to his health/longevity, just family weirdnesses, until I turned 50 and it all started to count to me!

                                                      2. every morning I eat an orange or grapefruit, followed by an apple, once in a while a pear if I can't find a good apple. I do eat other fruits too, but I usually eat them after a meal if I feel like it. I always eat some meat and vegetables in every meal. I eat a handful of nuts nearly everyday. I have coffee after lunch and have tea after dinner. I always have some chocolate everyday. Well, the truth is I LOVE eating all the above, they just happen to be healthy, I think. I avoid eating extremely oily dishes but I don't actually avoid any type of fat other than transfat and canola - it smells fishy to me. I do tend to select sweet potatoes over potatoes since I like them equally but sweet potatoes are probably slightly healthier. I don't eat an enormous amount of starch during the meals, in other words, I eat them but I treat them more or less like other items on the plate, almost never make it the main role. But I do like very good sweets, in moderation, because in the back of my mind I know it all will have to be worked out, literally, next morning. I don't drink sugary soda, not enough enjoyment for the amount of calories they contain, instead, sometimes I drink pepsi max and diet sierra mist ruby red flavor. I eat cheeses everyday, but again, never a block of cheese, probably about or less than 2 onces a day or so. In general I eat quite a lot of different kinds of food daily, but not an enormous amount of any single one of them and I do avoid extremely fatty, greasy stuff, and naturally prefer zesty, exciting flavors more.

                                                        4 Replies
                                                        1. re: mimolette

                                                          Meat at every meal??? Protein, yes, but I think meat--even when it's lean--isn't always the best form of protein to be having all the time.

                                                          1. re: spinachandchocolate

                                                            what can I say, I feel unfulfilled without some meat :)

                                                            1. re: spinachandchocolate

                                                              btw, I don't eat breakfast, so in a sense I don't eat meat for breakfast.

                                                              1. re: mimolette

                                                                ..and I'm vegetarian between meals! ;-)

                                                          2. Red wine and at least one can of tomato paste. (Tip: 90% of food-related-to-health research is, at best, dubious.

                                                            5 Replies
                                                            1. re: beevod

                                                              It's not the research itself that's so often bad, it's the unsupportable claims and incorrect interpretations that blow.

                                                              1. re: mcf

                                                                I agree. The research is usually pure and really just a compilation of data. Reviewing it can be helpful. It is the strained extrapolations based upon it, or worse, the "dumbed down" explanations of those extrapolations that are put into the popular media that are problematic.

                                                                1. re: MGZ

                                                                  The other problem is the bad practice of making clinical recommendations based upon epidemiological research, not clinical outcomes from case and control studies.

                                                              2. re: beevod

                                                                How do you manage to down the tomato paste?

                                                                1. re: beevod

                                                                  "Red wine and at least one can of tomato paste."

                                                                  Good for you. White wine and tomato paste is so gauche.

                                                                2. First of all that guy at work would make me nervous. He sounds like he’s about one perceived slight away from his neighbors appearing on television saying things like: “I can’t believe it.” “It’s really surprising.” “He seemed nice - kinda quiet.” “Pretty much kept to himself.”

                                                                  I can’t say I eat anything everyday for any reason. I think that type of regimentation would bore me to tears. I do avoid simple sugars and processed foods. Uhockey’s distinction concerning processed v. preserved is a good description/litmus. The only exceptions would be the Spectrum mayonnaise I always have the worst time finding, soy sauce, Worchestershire sauce, dried pasta, and a couple bottles of hot sauce. And, of course, the occasional meal eaten at a restaurant.

                                                                  I am always amazed at how some people define “processed” foods. More than a couple times, I have been asked about our diet. When I explain that we avoid processed foods, I am usually met with “Oh, us too.” Later in the conversation that same person tells me how great some new brownie mix is or proceeds to offer suggestions regarding the frozen hors d’oeuvres at Costco.

                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                  1. re: MGZ

                                                                    LOL, I didn't really get that vibe at first, but now I'm remembering a coworker who always ate a cheap-brand can of tuna at 10:00 every morning. In a rather small room shared with three other workers. Then left the stinky can in their trash to smell up the place all day. Oh, that was disgusting, no matter how you like tuna.

                                                                    1. re: MGZ

                                                                      I would add tofu to my processed foods list. Not too many more processed than that.

                                                                      1. re: chowfox

                                                                        Tofu is not really that processed. It's easy to make at home - I've done it. Soybeans, water, and a coagulating agent (which can be just vinegar). Simple, and it has been done since ancient times. Any cheese is at least as "processed" as tofu is.

                                                                    2. i eat a multivitamin and b12 supplements every morning as well drink/eat a fiber tablet. I restrict myself to eating insane healthy like the coworker until the weekend. So basically Mon-Friday, I dont eat candy, sugars, high fat foods like cheese and butter and meat wise I generally only eat lean meats during the week. I dont eat fast food (like Mickey Ds/taco bell) at all and I think the last soda I had was...in July?

                                                                      oh and I workout everyday.

                                                                      The weekends/travel/vacation is when I eat fatty foods.

                                                                      omnomzhero.blogspot.com

                                                                      1. I found this list of "30 healthiest foods" recently, from Real Simple magazine
                                                                        http://tinyurl.com/48jgjge
                                                                        and since I'm "trying to reduce" and/or make better food choices anyway, for a couple of weeks I've been trying to hit at least one or two foods on that list every day - which is really easy, considering that eggs and chicken breasts are both on the list. But it's not really a "MUST eat" scenario, just a "trying to."

                                                                        1. I never eat anything with HFCS, I only eat butter and olive oil - no vegetable oil, canola oil, etc.
                                                                          I never drink any milk or use dairy products that aren't organic. And I never consumed anything processed which means I never eat at chain restaurants, microwave meals, etc.

                                                                          Anything canned that I need to buy (tomatoes etc.) are organic only.

                                                                          10 Replies
                                                                          1. re: FoodChic

                                                                            It's becoming clear that while "processed food" is generally looked down upon, identifying it is highly subjective (beginning to remind me of old Potter's view on porn). Maybe that's a topic worthy of discussion (Processed food, I mean).

                                                                            1. re: MGZ

                                                                              Ohhh, I dunno. Can't we just drill hot screws into our eyeballs instead? ;-)

                                                                              1. re: mcf

                                                                                LOL...my thoughts exactly. I mean, obviously there's a difference between eating Kraft Dinner every day, and using Worcestershire sauce in a batch of stew, but I'd rather not try to figure out what the centre of that particular venn diagram would be.

                                                                                Anyhoo, oatmeal for breakfast every day with blueberries, a handful of almonds, some cheese or yogurt, and as much fruit and veg as I can manage. I wish I could eat chocolate every day, but it would never stop at one piece, so I just try to save it for weekends.

                                                                              2. re: MGZ

                                                                                Maybe you missed the discussion that using baking soda/baking powder in baking was using processed foods just as a Twinkie is. Not sure if it's worth discussing because we all have our own views on what is and isn't. I won't be the Ashcroft of processed foods and refuse to eat anything that didn't come from my garden.

                                                                                1. re: chowser

                                                                                  "we all have our own views on what is and isn't"

                                                                                  That's precisely what makes it interesting to me. It's also the reason for my allusion to the Supreme Court's obscenity jurisprudence.

                                                                                  I have not read the discussion you reference. Perhaps that would sate my interest for a bit. Do you have a link or a title?

                                                                                  1. re: MGZ

                                                                                    Here is it. Not about Twinkies (which made it hard for me to find the thread, but about cake mixes):

                                                                                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/687231

                                                                                    1. re: chowser

                                                                                      Thanks. Interesting to read and I doubt I would have ever found it. Between that thread and this one, it is clear that "processed food" is a vague, overused shorthand. Worse, the fact that it is widely employed to connote food that is "bad," makes many unnecessarily sensitive and defensive.

                                                                              3. re: FoodChic

                                                                                FoodChic--I hope you realize that government regulations on the use of "organic," "natural" and the likes are pretty weak. Packaging can be deceiving...

                                                                                1. re: spinachandchocolate

                                                                                  Regulation of organic is not weak. It's quite regulated and the rules are rigorous
                                                                                  http://www.ota.com/organic/faq.html

                                                                                  Certified Naturally Grown is also quite regulated, read about it here
                                                                                  http://www.naturallygrown.org/about-c...

                                                                                  When you see "Natural" on a package, it's rarely worth the ink that printed it

                                                                                  1. re: spinachandchocolate

                                                                                    Of course I know that. That is why I take the time to know what I'm buying and the company's practices. I never buy anything because it's labeled "natural." 7UP is labeled natural for pete's sake!!

                                                                                2. I try to avoid eating food that isn't organic, especially meat and dairy, (the exception being cheese, but I go for rbgh-free). I also don't eat/drink anything with artificial sweeteners and for the most part avoid processed/fast foods. Other than that, I just try to eat a balanced diet with a nice variety of veg, small amounts of "good" fat and a healthy dose of wine/beer to wash it all down.

                                                                                  1. This sounds like one of those lists of 10 wonder foods that come out periodically on MSN and such sites. Me, I'm in the "drink water and eat a varied diet" camp. I do take a couple of vitamin and mineral supplements because, hey, at 52 my system isn't quite as efficient as it once was, and the numbers have come up short once or twice. Other than that, no particular health regimen, no particular health problems.

                                                                                    1. If I buy any packaged or canned item, I read the ingredient label. More than a couple of ingredients and I put it back on the shelf. We're here on this earth to do good and also to enjoy ourselves. Driving ourselves crazy with searching and paying astronomical prices for organic (I think we've been sold a bill of goods with that one) is not necessary. I'm careful about what I buy. I buy at my local co-op and grow my own veggies during the summer, but I do buy veggies at the supermarket as well. I avoid eating at McD and the like because of the sodium and sugar in their foods. I avoid refined sugar where I can, but if a piece of good-looking chocolate cake presents itself, I will enjoy it and not worry about the sugar and fat content. There are times when only butter will do in a recipe. I guess I'm talking about moderation here.

                                                                                      1. Just for convenience, I eat pretty much the same breakfast, snacks and lunch 5 days a week (work days). Those days, I eat
                                                                                        breakfast: a grapefruit and a small of branflakes with skim milk, hemp seeds and a handful of blueberries
                                                                                        morning snack: banana
                                                                                        lunch: a veg soup of some sort (today was squash), some raw carrots, a piece of hard cheese, some stone-ground crackers and a bit of yoghurt.
                                                                                        afternoon snack: apple
                                                                                        Most evenings I also eat a bit of cottage cheese.
                                                                                        On my days off, I will still eat a grapefruit, a banana, some cottage cheese and some hemp seeds. This might seem kind of rigid and boring, but I actually really love the foods I eat and my dinners are very eclectic.

                                                                                        I also seldm have a day without a leafy green (usually spinach or arugula), and some tomatoes. I also make sure I have a bit of olive oil daily.

                                                                                        Things I never eat: it has been at least 15 years since I had any fast food place, at least 10 since any carbonated beverage.

                                                                                        1. I must have coffee with a little milk every single day or my mental health will be very, very bad, and my entire family will suffer. Plus, I will be mortally stupid, and everyone else will have to pick up the slack.

                                                                                          Along this same line, I refuse to eat anything that doesn't taste delicious. Mealy apple? Out! Package of "gourmet" pastries that taste like sawdust? Out! This is why I am slim.

                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: Isolda

                                                                                            Ah, yes! Your last paragraph is a recent adoption of mine. I told my mother (raised by Great Depression survivors) that I was swearing off anything that didn't taste amazing, and she was horrified! ;)

                                                                                            1. re: Isolda

                                                                                              Isolda, I like the way you think! (and eat too)

                                                                                            2. Everyday foods:
                                                                                              Garlic
                                                                                              Red wine
                                                                                              EVO
                                                                                              Fruit and veggies
                                                                                              Fish
                                                                                              Coffee
                                                                                              Brewed Iced Tea
                                                                                              Dark Chocolate
                                                                                              Dark Beer

                                                                                              Avoid:
                                                                                              Red Meat..except an occasional patty melt with gobbs of 1,000 or a double double
                                                                                              Processed foods

                                                                                              1. Nope--the only time I might avoid a food is because ethically I have problems with it. Most of my diet is healthy, unprocessed but I'm a big believer in moderation. I'll eat a Twinkie if I want (though I can't remember the last time I've had one). I wouldn't say never to a food or a group of foods. I generally try to avoid trans fats but once or twice a year, I'll use Crisco. I don't think it makes me less healthy in that small an amount. I can't be that regimented about life.

                                                                                                I do have coffee every day. It's not for my health but for the health of everyone around me who has to put up with me in the early morning.;-)

                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                1. re: chowser

                                                                                                  Lol! That's so my mom. If you try to communicate with her before she has her first cup of coffee in the morning it is not pretty (imagine a snapping turtle). My dad and I got really good at just thrusting a cup into her hands the second she got up.

                                                                                                2. I try to eat some kind of fruit everyday. Other than that, I can't think of a single thing that I eat everyday other than multivitamin and other various pills. I can't think of anything I avoid either. If it tastes good, I'll eat it. When my "skinny" jeans (as opposed to "fat/that time of the month" jeans) feel a little tight, I know it's time to stop eating. Thank the stars for good metabolism.

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                                                                                                  1. re: uwsister

                                                                                                    I'm the same way- I eat whatever I feel like eating. Why put a bunch of restrictions on something I love to do? I have seen a trend in the last ten or twenty years of "fear marketing" about food- people are making millions off of it and people obsess over it to the point of legislating what people can and can't eat. I choose not to play that game. I may not live quite as long as someone who eats a bunch twigs and seeds every day, but I don't feel the need to go out and eat a double cheeseburger all the time either, though I sure as hell am not going to feel awful about it if I do. Life is like food- quality over quantity and if my goal was to live until I'm 90 I might see things differently.

                                                                                                  2. I'm not a rigid eater, so the only thing I ingest every day is probably water. Most days I drink tea and often eat an egg in some form. There are foods that are unhealthy for me, because of intolerances/sensitivities but aren't unhealthy for everyone else.

                                                                                                    1. I must have orange juice with my black coffee, peanut butter, red wine, and chamomile tea every day. I don't eat red meat at all, and eat very little sugar. I try to eat a lot of oatmeal, bananas, avacado, cantelope, salmon, chicken, sweet potatoes, and green beans or other green vegetables. works for me.

                                                                                                      1. Every single day, no matter what, I have
                                                                                                        plain organic oatmeal
                                                                                                        plain nonfat Greek yogurt
                                                                                                        green apple
                                                                                                        berries at breakfast

                                                                                                        1. Every day-
                                                                                                          60-90oz of water
                                                                                                          A pasta of some sort- usually whole wheat, sometimes not, sometimes in the form of a soup
                                                                                                          White wine (1-2 glasses)

                                                                                                          The pasta thing is purely comfort food and yeah, one can overdo it on carbs...but I feel absolutely deprived when I don't have at least a tiny little bit of pasta at some point during the day. A few years back I lost 35 lbs on WW...every day, I had my 3/4 cup of wholewheat penne with olive oil and a bit of freshly shredded parm. Call me carb addicted, but my day doesn't feel "right" without it. Meanwhile, I eat VERY little bread/sweets and almost never have cake or chips or anything like that. I cook 99% of what I eat and eat out VERY little...so i figure my 300cal a day in pasta is ok.

                                                                                                          1. I avoid eating stuff full of too many preservatives or weird ingredients I don't recognize. I try my best to avoid trans fats and excess sodium as well.

                                                                                                            Other than that, I eat pretty much everything, just in moderation. Butter, red meat, and so on are all delicious and have their place, as do fresh berries, leafy greens, nuts, etc.

                                                                                                            1. In my case, I avoid fatty foods..also I'm not a big fan of pork..I'd rather eat vegetables and fruits than to eat pork.

                                                                                                              1. I was pondering this discussion and recalled a conversation I had with my Uncle. He's 75 and can rattle off to you exactly what he eats every single day for breakfast, snack, lunch, snack and dinner, and they're all healty foods, but MAN how boring to have no variety in your food.... there's never a "roll your eyes back in your head" moment because what you just put into your mouth tasted SOOOO good! sad

                                                                                                                8 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: cgarner

                                                                                                                  Oh give the man his comfort. AT 75 he's earned it and I'm sure well aware of what he enjoys eating! Right! While I can see your point, who says eating the same foods often is boring for the person swallowing?

                                                                                                                  Like a wardrobe, open the closet do you see COLOR on hangers or the basic blue, black and grey? It's all in the beholder.

                                                                                                                  1. re: HillJ

                                                                                                                    It’s sad to me when someone loses the enjoyment of food and it becomes just another thing to consume at a prescribed time.

                                                                                                                    At 8:00 I have to have a quarter cup of blueberries over a half cup of rice krispies and skim milk and then I take my ________ medicine
                                                                                                                    At 10:00 I have to take my banana
                                                                                                                    At 12:30 I have to eat a quarter cantaloupe with the ____ from Whole foods hot bar and while I’m there I pick up the ____ for dinner
                                                                                                                    And then I take my ________ medicine at (insert prescribed time here)
                                                                                                                    At 3:00 I eat a tablespoon of peanut butter - I used to eat 9 almonds but they get stuck in my teeth, so I eat peanut butter now…. So I eat a tablespoon of peanut butter on a slice of whole wheat toast
                                                                                                                    Then at 5:30 I eat the ________ from Whole foods for diner
                                                                                                                    And then at 6:15 I take my __________ medicine
                                                                                                                    And an hour before I go to bed I have 4 ounces of skim milk with my _________ medicine

                                                                                                                    His attitude about food has done a 180 in the last 10 years, no more wine, no more steak, no more grilled foods, so many of the foods I’ve watched him thoroughly enjoy over the years have been completely removed from his diet because of unfounded fears and eating has become rote, something he HAS to do.

                                                                                                                    I’ve offered to make meals for him to have some variety, I’ve asked him for a list of what he feels he can and cannot eat and he’s refused because he’s “afraid” to change anything. He has completely stopped dining out in restaurants and only eats with family for holidays.

                                                                                                                    So yes, this is an extreme, but I think it’s a good example of how you can get too hung up on “every day I have to eat _____ in order to stay healthy”

                                                                                                                    1. re: cgarner

                                                                                                                      This looks like the beginnings of an eating disorder, at least from my perspective. They can and do hit at any age for any demographic, and not all eating disorders mean just not eating (It looks a little like orthorexia, but I'm not a professional, just a former sufferer). The major red flag that I saw was
                                                                                                                      "...many of the foods I’ve watched him thoroughly enjoy over the years have been completely removed from his diet because of unfounded fears and eating has become rote, something he HAS to do. I’ve offered to make meals for him to have some variety, I’ve asked him for a list of what he feels he can and cannot eat and he’s refused because he’s “afraid” to change anything. He has completely stopped dining out in restaurants and only eats with family for holidays."
                                                                                                                      Eating should be something that we enjoy, at least to some extent. It looks like he could be missing out on some key nutrients, even in the name of health.
                                                                                                                      That kind of rigidity can become dangerous very quickly. You may want to look into getting him some help. Best of luck!

                                                                                                                      1. re: pegathaismyname

                                                                                                                        Could the medicine he's taking be the culprit for food fear, loss of taste and appetite changes? It might not have as much to do with the food. If this was my relative, I'd be inquiring about medication side effects.

                                                                                                                        1. re: pegathaismyname

                                                                                                                          It's an unfortunate consequence of aging poorly, as well, that sometimes the elderly lose their sense of taste, whether it's caused by medication or other circumstances. I wouldn't leap to a psychological diagnosis before checking out possible medical or physiological causes.

                                                                                                                    2. re: cgarner

                                                                                                                      It's only sad if he's disappointed by it.

                                                                                                                      1. re: cgarner

                                                                                                                        Every morning for breakfast, I have a soft boiled egg, toast, fruit with nonfat yogurt, coffee and a glass of V8. Every morning, I look forward to it, and every morning, I enjoy it. Is it possible your uncle is like me?

                                                                                                                        1. re: small h

                                                                                                                          I eat a very similar breakfast...I have blackberry kefir instead of yogurt (same but different) and drink that with the egg and toast. I save my V8 for a mid morning snack.

                                                                                                                      2. Each morning:

                                                                                                                        1- Glass of orange juice.

                                                                                                                        2- The daily miso soup.

                                                                                                                        1. A big morning glass of V8 fruit fusion juice and a multivitamin are my only daily must haves. I usually will munch some fruit during the afternoons, white grapes are my favorite. I eat fish at least twice a week, but that's more just because I love it.
                                                                                                                          I don't avoid anything, but I've never been an eater of big portions. I tend to eat slowly to enjoy my food and just stop when I'm full.
                                                                                                                          And I work out like a dog! Being in decent shape has really made it so I can get away with some stuff, for example no harm done yet by my love of cheese and beer.

                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                            allie, just asking, do you include any protein in your breakfast of V8 fruit fusion and vitamin? Seems to me it would not hold you very long with just those 2 foods? Thanks!

                                                                                                                            1. re: Val

                                                                                                                              Oh, I also eat a breakfast. But it's never the same each day, so that's why I didn't include it on my list. I'd never make it on just juice :)

                                                                                                                          2. i eat fruit & veggies everyday. id say 6 out of 7 days i also have greek yog.

                                                                                                                            everyday at work i have non fat greek yog w/ blueberries, strawberries, some drained no sugar added fruit cocktail, craisins & crushed walnuts. most days also include apples & bananas

                                                                                                                            1. Lots of fruit, Greek Yogurt or eggs, fish or chicken, veggies and WINE. ...yes, every day as I am in the business.

                                                                                                                              1. all kinds of meat (beef, pork, lamb, chicken) and fish
                                                                                                                                real butter
                                                                                                                                full fat dairy products like cheese, cream, yogurt
                                                                                                                                veggies
                                                                                                                                eggs
                                                                                                                                nuts and berries

                                                                                                                                well im trying to avoid carbs but since i dont have any health issues i do eat carb when i feel like it

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                                                                                                                                1. re: L987

                                                                                                                                  This is what we do but olive oil for a part of the butter and fish 3 times a week.
                                                                                                                                  No sugar, starches or grains.
                                                                                                                                  We used to follow a Mediterranean diet but both developed different metabolic issues so had to make a change. We have both lost weight by doing this paying no attention to calories.

                                                                                                                                2. Oh boy, if I could eat blueberries every day I sure would. My favorite food ever. Pretty much. But I just don't like the off-season ones that are 5.99 for a tiny package. I sure can't wait until summertime produce - THEN my daily foods will be blueberries and strawberries. Everyday. All summer long.

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                                                                                                                                  1. re: rainbowbrown

                                                                                                                                    Rainbowbrown...if you have a Whole Foods nearby, they sell their own house brand "365" of frozen organic wild blueberries, $3.99 for 10 ounces...just saying this is a LITTLE better than $5.99. I pretty much keep them in freezer all the time now, trying to eat them 4 times a week at least for the phytonutrient benefits. But blueberries are more plentiful as we come into summer...just a suggestion for the winter months for you.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: rainbowbrown

                                                                                                                                      You can also buy and freeze them when they're in season. Of course, the cost of keeping them frozen ups the expense, but if you love them, it may be worthwhile. Costco also has good quality frozen blueberries year round. Not the same as fresh fruit, but good.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: amyzan

                                                                                                                                        What "cost of keeping them frozen"? That would only apply if you otherwise would not have or run a freezer. As it is, it's in your best interest to keep your freezer full -- it runs better.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: LauraGrace

                                                                                                                                          Yes, exactly. Thanks for clarifying a point that apparently wasn't so obvious to others.

                                                                                                                                    2. about 6/7 days of the week, I eat plain greek yogurt with either blueberries or strawberries, topped with granola almond clusters and a small drizzle of honey. Such a yummy snack with loads of protein. Also good as a dessert too because it has such a nice sweetness to it. I'm getting HUNGRY just thinking about it, but I've had my share for today. I also try to eat an egg or two everyday as well for breakfast. I get so hungry if I dont have an egg in the morning.

                                                                                                                                      1. My meals vary throughout the day but breakfast tends to always be the same. Vanilla yogurt with a banana and whole grain cereal (organic). There's something about it that gets me through the day and keeps me looking forward to breakfast. Sunday mornings I will occasionally make waffles (from scratch) which I consider to still be healthy (even when I add some chocolate chips :)).

                                                                                                                                        1. I work at a hospital, they have a cafeteria. The two best things about it are the grill and the saad bar, which they recently revamped and ramped up AND priced out the same as the sandwich bar, so I can get some nice grens, a scoop of egg salad and a couple of slices of Swiss cheese along with whatever the daily salad bar offerings are- the first part is always there.

                                                                                                                                          But what I meant to say was this- the grill is good, they have some seasoned pros there, and it used to be so easy to get a ______ and fries, until I realized that I really didn't like their fries- fresh from the freezer bag but totally sodium free and they didn't have any real flavor- good texture, but no flavor, which makes them pretty gross unless there's A1 sauce or something. So I quit getting "fries with that"- and have lost some weight, plus not missing the fries. Because they're unhealthy and they didn't satisfy like really good fries would.

                                                                                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                                                                                          1. re: EWSflash

                                                                                                                                            No salt on the fries?! What the heck? It's almost like they are purposely trying to prevent people from enjoying a good side order of french fries.... I would definitely avoid the fries there too!

                                                                                                                                            1. re: cioccolata

                                                                                                                                              On the rare occasions I have fries, it's when I can get them unsalted. There's plenty of salt in the ketchup. It would move fast food chains in a healthier direction if they did not automatically salt their fries. People can always add it if they want to.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                Good point. Since I hate ketchup though I need to add something to the fries. Even just the addition of garlic would probably do it for me. I don't like them oversalted (which most fast food chains seem to do in my opinion) so I think it would be cool to allow the customer to add as much as they want. Oddly enough I hate the addition of salt to sweet potato fries so I usually make my own.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: cioccolata

                                                                                                                                                  The thing is fries need to be salted immediately out of the fryer or it's not as good. I like salt on my fries but not ketchup. But, I can't remember the last time I had fast food fries so it's not really a problem for me.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                    I can't even remember the last time I ate at a fast food joint. Once I started cooking for myself I must admit that I became a food snob and will no longer frequent such places. I still eat out, I'm just more picky where. Funny how as a kid I loved eating at places like McDonald's and now I just avoid the place. Admittedly I would always take the meat off so I really only ate their buns with cheese, the chocolate milkshakes, and the fries. I was a very picky eater when I was young...

                                                                                                                                                2. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                  Wow- I have a hospital cafeteria for you...

                                                                                                                                            2. I try to either eat oily fish or take a fish oil supplement daily, but I don't avoid any foods for health reasons (mostly because I think a lot of the advice on 'healthy' foods is bunk.

                                                                                                                                              1. I try to eat oatmeal and lentils most days(not together), coffee and usually a glass of wine each day, other than that I am happy if I have a variety of cheese and plenty of veggies in my diet. Aside from those basics I like to mix it up and try new things, but I don't really avoid anything. I figure as long as I'm healthy most of the time it's not going to hurt me to have a cheeseburger or pint of ice cream every once in awhile.

                                                                                                                                                1. sounds like he is trying to gain muscle mass