Monday, March 3, 2014

Becoming a Trim Healthy Family

Many women who are considering starting Trim Healthy Mama are concerned that they will have to fix one meal for themselves and another for their families, but this isn't true. I thought maybe if I shared how it works in our home that it might help you to see how it could work in yours.

The first thing you need to do is get out of the mind set that this is a diet, it is NOT. It is a healthy way of eating, one that will become your lifestyle, not just a fad you are following. You are making changes in your diet (what you eat), healthy changes, to become the healthiest you that you can be. You are doing this to have energy to chase your kiddos or love on your husband. You are doing this to conquer illness and disease. You are doing this so that you can finally feel good, physically and emotionally. Don't you want these things for yourself and for your family too? Of course you do, we all do. This is for life, your life.

I won't lie to you and tell you it has always been easy for me, it hasn't - HOWEVER, it has always been worth it! My family doesn't follow Trim Healthy Mama guidelines all of the time, they don't want to. We aren't a purist family, we come from the normal S.A.D. way of eating (standard american diet). One of my favorite treats is ruffles chips, hiland french onion dip and a pepsi. Not healthy at all. To be completely honest with you, I still have this treat once in awhile - but only once in awhile, as a treat and I don't eat the whole container by myself now! Remember this isn't a diet, it is a lifestyle and for me it is all about moderation. It is okay for me to indulge on the special occasion but I must remember that not every day is a special occasion!

How do I do it with a husband and four children that don't really care to follow the plan? I do the best I can. I find meals that we all enjoy and that follow the guidelines, maybe adding an extra side of potatoes or corn for my children - I just don't eat that dish. I have learned to turn our favorite dishes into THM dishes when possible. I have also learned that my family has some favorites that I cannot turn into THM and that is okay, I still serve them, occasionally

I have also been teaching them the concepts of the plan as I follow it, explaining why I choose to eat certain things or not eat certain things. They all know I don't consume sugar and why; they all know I eat special chips; and they all know why I am choosing this way of eating. They have seen my weight loss and my increase in energy, they know the plan works. Even if they are not following the plan, I am instilling in them the education of a healthy way of eating. They will know when they are ready to do it themselves.

Most of the time breakfast and lunch are a fend for yourself kind of thing in this house, so it is easy for me to eat on plan even if they are not. We always have oatmeal, toast (homemade bread), and eggs available for breakfast. Lunch is usually leftovers so that we don't waste them. If your children are too little to fix their own breakfast then you can fix eggs and bacon for everyone and still be on plan. You can do overnight oatmeal in the crockpot and still be on plan. You can even do breakfast burritos and still be on plan, if you use approved tortillas for yourself. You don't have to fix special foods, you just have to learn what your family likes and how to make that THM. You can do it!

What about lunch if we don't have leftovers? Tuna salad, egg salad and chicken salad are all on plan and while my children use homemade bread, I use a Joseph's pita. Or we can make individual pizzas on flat bread or pitas. Then again maybe we could have tacos/burritos but I would use an approved tortilla or have a taco salad. Oh and tomato soup and grilled cheese is one of our favorites!

I've learned to make baked goods using xylitol instead of honey if it is something I want to eat too. For example my peanut butter cookies recipe I tweaked to make THM and my children still love them and gobble them up. I can also make brownies, pumpkin cake and muffins according to THM guidelines (by changing the types of flour and sweetener I use)

I need to let you know a few other things since I am being completely honest. My oldest son has a job and is of driving age, which means he can buy junk food when he wants it. Yes, this is something I could just not allow him to do, but hubby and I don't want to do that (for several reasons). Anyway, this means we do have junk food in the house and yes, he shares with his siblings and father. I just choose not to eat it most of the time. They also know that if they want junk to eat, they buy it themselves because mom spends her grocery money on "good for us" food.  

I know our family is probably a lot different from yours and that is great, God made us all different! My hope is that you have been encouraged to learn how to make THM work for you and your family. You don't have to buy lots of special ingredients that only you will eat or make lots of separate meals. You just have to learn what your family likes and what they don't. One way to do this is through trial and error, I have made many THM meals that my family didn't like but I have also made many that have become favorites. 

The last point I want to make, although not the least important, is that I believe God will bless your efforts. Pray about this decision, ask His guidance and wisdom. He knows your heart and He will help you in this journey. 

Blessings my friends,

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  1. I have been off plan ever since I went to California back in February . . . . I know I need to get back on, but keep saying, I'll get back on plan tomorrow! Truth is, I have been indulging the flesh. Also, it takes a lot more time and energy to THINK of a THM-approved meal than to just throw together something I've been fixing and eating for years and years. . . .

    Thanks for sharing how you make this work for your family! I'd love to hear any more of your practical suggestions and favorite recipes!!! :)

    I need a good kick in the back of the skirt! :) Want to give me one?? ;)


    1. Elizabeth, it is so easy to get off plan when traveling. That happened to me last November and boy it was hard to get back on plan. BUT it is so worth it. I honestly feel so much better when eating on plan and I have more energy too!
      Take 5 minutes and put together some of the drink mixes in advance - like singing canary or apple pie sip. It only takes a few minutes to get several jars of the dry ingredients together and ready to go when you need a healthy drink.
      If you have a few more minutes, think about what you have on hand that you could use to make a THM dinner for tomorrow night and maybe even the next night. Then lay out any meat that needs to thaw so you will have no excuses tomorrow. Frozen chicken breasts can be thrown in the crockpot with a can of rotel tomatoes and a TBSP of taco seasoning, cook on low all day. When you are ready, shred with a fork, and you are all set for chicken burritos on healthy tortillas or a chicken taco salad minus the shell (or use lavash chips instead of tortilla chips).
      Now, think about why you started THM in the first place. What is your motivation? You can do this, just take the first step and if you get off plan, just start again at the next meal. Come on, I know you can!

    2. Thank you so much for the practical encouragement!