My boyfriend and I were at the grocery store when I saw pumpkins. To be honest, I went ape poop over it. I was like, “PUMPKINS! THE PUMPKINS!” just pointing at them, wide-eyed and mouthed.
“It’s way too early for that, babe.” He said. Then I was like, not even. Halloween is coming up! “That’s not until October…” Uh, yeah. Next month!
And then I had a rude awakening that October does not in fact come after August. September just has to ruin the fun. Perhaps my brain needs a little exercise as well.
But guess who got some lovely healthy things at the store today? That’s right, this chick right here! Here’s a list of what I bought and their health benefits.
Raspberries – packed with antioxidants, fights cancer, lowers the risk of diseases like diabetes/obesity, increases metabolism, and of course tastes pretty awesome with a chocolate (white, milk or dark) in the middle
Blueberries – another one packed with antioxidants, beneficial to your cognition (that’d be your brain, folks), reduces cholesterol, improves your balance. Add a bit of sugar or honey on top, or put it in your yogurt or oatmeal and you’ve got a good snack right there!
Grapefruit – can you say VITAMIN C?, promotes heart health, reduces your risk for cancer, and doesn’t taste as bad as everyone thinks, trust me. Just chop one in half with your breakfast and spoon the suckers out. YUM!
Apples – proven to be more effective at waking you up than any caffeinated drink, good amount of fiber, regulates your blood sugar levels, decreased risk of asthma, and it fills you up so if you’ve got a craving but want to be healthy, just slap some peanut butter on that baby and CHOMP!
Hummus – a great alternative to most condiments that people put on sandwiches like mayo or ketchup or that chipotle stuff, the chickpeas are a good source of protein, and if you don’t like fish, have some hummus for that Omega 3 fatty acids. It’s also said to be a mood-lifter and improves sleep.
Spinach – Popeye was right, although he probably should have had raw spinach instead of canned. Blech! Spinach is another good source of vitamin C and fiber, lowers blood pressure, improves vision, strengthens your immune system and bones, and fights off acne, which is a must for me now that I’m working almost full-time over a gnarly fryer.
Dark Chocolate – Oh no, chocolate! Sweets are terrible for you! Get off your soapbox, you know that too much of anything is a bad thing… Except Harry Potter. You can never get enough Harry Potter. One word for dark chocolate: phenylethylamine, which is the same chemical your brain produces when you’re -siiiiiiigh- falling in love. Not only is dark chocolate good for your brain, it helps control blood sugar, hardens your tooth enamel, and is packed with good vitamins and minerals: iron, potassium, magnesium… And if you’re a uterus and ovary bearing person such as myself, there are other benefits to this little snack.
Yogurt – some prefer greek, others don’t. I’m in the latter category, but either way yogurt is good if you want to lose weight, so if you’re working on those abs, make sure yogurt is in your diet. It’s loaded with vitamins that can help your nervous system, it’s easier to digest than milk (and I just had some, so if a lactose intolerant girl says so, it’s law), decreases yeast infections, good source of protein AND calcium, and you can pretty much put anything on it. Make a parfait for breakfast, if you will.
Cranberry Juice – The saviour among juices, am I right? If you ever have a bladder infection, drink as much of this as you possibly can. It can also reduce plaque build-up in your teeth, reduce the risk of cancer, helps your immune and cardiovascular health.
Before I fall asleep, there’s a funny story to be told about the moment I shared with my boyfriend in the dairy aisle and then at his apartment as soon as we came back.
I am not exactly an expert in food, but it’s something I’ve done a lot of research on, so when my boyfriend sees something and I shake my head saying, “You’re going to regret that decision.” he usually listens. Tonight, not so much.
He was staring at this container of rubbery-looking cheese for a good couple of minutes before picking it up and declaring that he had to try it. “Mexican gelatin” is what they called it. Sigh. I voiced my opinion, and stated that something in a container like that with the consistency that it had was not in any way, shape, or form cheese.
He didn’t listen. How could he resist? So when we got back and finished loading up his fridge with his unhealthy food and my relatively healthy choices, he pulled out the jello-faux cheese.
When he peeled back the plastic covering, a look of disappointment crossed his face. He was close to tears, honest. “That’s so not what I thought it would be. I want to cry.” The part of me that loves being right started dancing and saying, “told ya!”
Lesson of the day: When Raine says something about a food item, she usually knows what’s up. Like that one time I made bacon-caramel-chocolate-chip cookies topped with cinnamon sugar, and the other time I put salsa in mac and cheese. I will never eat mac and cheese alone again, if I ever in some point and time decide to eat mac and cheese.