Welcome to The Healthy Catholic Moms Podcast where we make moving and nourishing our bodies the priority, so that we not only fulfill our vocations, but excel in our callings. I’m Brittany Pearson, a Catholic wife, mom, personal trainer, and I’m here to help you build healthy habits that actually fit your life. I am here to teach you how to get the results that you want and maintain the results that you want without spending hours at the gym, or meal prepping all weekend long. I understand I am right here with you getting my workouts done in the nooks and crannies of time, looking up recipes, while nursing babies and trying to prioritize my own health amidst everything else going on. But I have really good news for you, you can get the results you want. In less time without doing hours of cardio and restrictive dieting. I’m going to teach you how to use strength training and eating in a macro balanced way to get you feeling so good and your skin full of energy, and strong to carry out your life. Okay, on this podcast, we’ll delve into how to lose fat in a simple, sustainable way. What your workouts and nutrition should look like during different seasons of life, like during pregnancy and postpartum times. We’ll also discuss healthy quick meals, and how to get them on the table make foods that kids will actually want to eat. Mom hacks for making your day run more smoothly and so much more. All the while with continuous encouragement to stay the course and live with discipline. This is a place where we’re striving to steward our bodies well, in order to joyfully serve. I am so happy you’re here. Let’s dive in.

Main Episode:

Hello, beautiful people. Thank you so much for joining me I’m so happy you’re here. Whether it’s your first time you hear all the time, thank you for choosing to press play and take a listen today, I’m very excited to dive into today’s topic about how you can really truly this is not a gimmick, you can really have the pleasure of food, the enjoy the whole experience of food of different flavors, aromas, texture, all that food has to contribute to our seriously life and happiness. I’m not at all being sarcastic or facetious here, I truly believe that food has such a pivotal part of our lives of our traditions of our comforts, it’s so many different things, especially in so many different
family traditions and cultures, it’s just can be a really personal thing. It’s a really welcoming thing.

So I love food, food is great, let’s get that right out there. But then there’s the whole idea that yes, everything that you’re putting in your body is either making you healthier, or maybe making you sicker. And I think that there can be very big extremes here and a big line drawn in the sand, where you might encounter somebody’s health and fitness page, or podcast or book that’s going to tell you to never eat highly processed food or to never have this kind of food XYZ, and I am somewhere in the middle here then obviously then you have the other extreme of like, eat everything because life’s short, so I’m definitely in the middle of Yes, Food is fuel. And in general, we need to be mindful of the fact that food is healing that’s again, there’s many things that food is food is comfort, food is nourishment, and I really love the word nourish in regards to food because that’s what we want to do. And I think sometimes we are nourishing our spirits a little more so like having, you know, a warm bowl of chicken noodle soup when you’re sick and that is healing as well and all that. But sometimes even like you know it’s nourishing to have a big bowl of mac and cheese when you need a comfort food and you do want those you know endorphins and oxytocin from carbs which does give you happy feelings you know, sometimes there’s a time and place for that. And then there’s a time and place for food to be nourishing in other ways like giving you the micronutrients that are in you know vegetables and dark leafy greens and all kinds of foods, not just vegetables but I think there’s a somewhere in the middle kind of answer. And those of you who are newer to this idea who might be newer listeners to the podcast thinking okay, I eat pretty terribly and or maybe you’re starting to become aware of ways you can enhance your diet and you’re thinking like, well, I just have to have chicken sales for the rest of my life. If I want to be thin I want to maintain my weight. This extends to all areas if you are actively pursuing fat loss or have weight to lose. Absolutely, you can still enjoy food and I want you to still enjoy food.

If you are trying to maintain a healthy body weight you have the body composition that you want, you can still enjoy food. So this is everybody at every stage. I do believe like there are you know God gave us this image Using variety, like why do we have herbs and whatnot, you can get into how herbs also have healing qualities and things. But there’s just so many different flavors. And sometimes when I’m cooking, like, why is why was this even made other than to enhance our enjoyment of food truly. So it’s it can be more than one thing we don’t have to always look at it, in my opinion is a little bit of my opinion as like, okay, everything I have is again either making me healthier, sicker. Yes, yes, and yes, but I still have salt and vinegar chips, sometimes, I still have a beer sometimes in different things. So I’m just going to share with you a little bit of some overarching like thoughts I have on this. And then also a couple tips specifically, that I have come up in working with hundreds of women about how to better your relationship with food.

So in general, I promote 80/20 eating which is 80% whole clean foods 20% treats. If you do not venture down a road, if you try to start out really gung ho super strict super, I’m an air quotes here clean. What typically happens is then you go off the rails the other way, when you can’t take it anymore. This is what I see time and time again, when maybe it’s clients who come to me for the first time on a coaching call or something and are sharing, you know, well, I’ve done this, I’ve done that what really works for me is and I think that’s such, you know, the thing that we see in the back of our minds is oh, that worked for me. It didn’t work for you. If you couldn’t maintain it. We can’t keep going back to that’s exactly what yo yo dieting is. And it’s not good for metabolisms. So if you’re thinking okay, it worked really well for me when I only chicken salads, and I had no alcohol, no other drinks except water. I only had I went really low carb, I did it. And yeah, you lost 10 pounds. But then Q A month or two months later, you gained it back, you were probably really hungry at the time. Also, when you were in that deprivation state, you might have had headaches, like lots of things you’re also not remembering, you might have think it worked as in you lost the 10 pounds, but it didn’t work because you couldn’t maintain that. And I again, I don’t think that’s the way to live. I will say I’ve talked with other clients about how there’s totally times of life where if you are choosing to really only use food as fuel, that’s totally your choice. And that’s awesome. I have done that in periods when not even this past time when I ran an ultra marathon because I still was not been dedicated to a very clean nutrition plan, then I was just at 20 the whole time. But say back when I think I was probably running a half marathon, my husband, my now husband and I were just dating and we were I was trying to get the best time of half marathon that I’d ever done. So I was training for it as in I would run like once a week still just distance running. But I was doing a lot of extra I was teaching a lot of exercise classes during the week. So my exercise was pretty covered. And then I was really dedicated to wanting to be able to run my fastest time. So I was prioritizing pretty much being 99% with my food. This was where if I was at a party and pizza was being served, I would just eat before I went and then I’d have some of the veggie tray and nibble on a few things. And then I’d go home and eat to like chicken rice and broccoli or whatever cleaner thing was at home ground turkey and rice that I made or something. And I was being really diligent about eating super clean, that was for a short season. And that was to accomplish a goal. That’s totally fine to do. And I am 100% behind those of you who are shooting for some kind of goal like that. I actually was chatting with a client the other day who was contemplating doing a bodybuilding competition. Now this is not in my wheelhouse. I do not train people who are doing bodybuilding competitions. And I was sharing a little bit of that with her. But I was saying how, you know, she, her priority sounded like she wanted to have a balanced lifestyle, shorter workouts each day, not spending hours at the gym, and being able to enjoy foods and whatnot, kind of what we’re talking about today. But then also this kind of like goal in the back of her mind was doing the competition. And I said, that’s great. Like, if you want to do that go for it, you’re gonna have to get a different coach, because I’m definitely not going to do that. But it doesn’t sound like it really lines up with your goals, because that’s a time where you need to be really 99 to 100% clean if you want to do well. So I think there’s a time and place for setting, you know, high achieving goals for yourself. And sticking to that. And then you know, that’s when you go out for ice cream with the family and you maybe don’t get it or you get a baby size or whatever that looks like. But and here’s where most of the rest of us fall. If you’re not in that season of life right now and you’re not super strictly training for something. You can enjoy food I want you to enjoy food food. Like I said it’s already I already listed all the things I love food, all the accolades, and I don’t want you to think like oh yeah, sure, Brittany. No, truly I love baking. I love cooking Italian food, especially from scratch. I have Mimi Thor’s cookbooks. She does a lot of French cooking, but I have her old world Italian cookbook. It’s beautiful. The pictures are beautiful, super inspiring gets me excited about food in the kitchen has a ton of it’s like straight carbs. It’s all pastas. Lots of creams. Also, like half my family can’t have cream, so I can’t make that. But you get what I’m saying. So I like a lot of different things, which includes some richer foods, some sugary things. And you know, sometimes like 99% of the time, if I’m just making something on a weekday or the staples, my family eats all the time. I’ll sweeten it with maple syrup, I’ll sweeten it with honey, something like that. But then if I’m making like some kind of pie for the, for a holiday or a special event, I will use real sugar and I will make a pie and people have a small serving, and they will live through it. That’s something I think about too with I don’t know, everybody again, grew up very differently. But my family my great grandma lived to 99 She was a healthy weight the whole time through. And obviously it was a different world. She also like walked to the market every day to get her food. She was from Naples. And she like was living here at the time but could walk to the market and get her food every day. But she ate sweets often. Like my sisters and I were talking about this today it was like noni always had a piece of cake at night like after dinner, or a piece of pie or some fudge like there was always something sweet after dinner, but she didn’t have five pieces of cake or five pies. And I think that this is something we can also kind of look to other cultures for in other traditions in countries because it is sorry, guys, it’s true. It’s a very American thing for us to go crazy on the portions. Not saying that other you know, people other places don’t struggle with portion sizes or struggle with moderation. But it does seem to be more of an issue here across the board in portion sizes. I have seen i This probably went around you’ve probably seen it there was a real that I saw of this Italian man who was in America who ordered ice cream, and he ordered a small and they hand it to him and it looks like a large you know, sir American small and he was like, no, no, like he couldn’t believe it. It was super cute. He’s like, this is a small Oh, thank you. It’s like all excited. But it you know is not really a great thing that that’s what we’re accustomed to. And that that is our portion size. So kind of loops into my tips on how to be able to actually do this because it’s one thing hopefully you’re taking this like you and I sit here having coffee, me telling you and giving you permission to be like it’s okay, you can enjoy food. You can also one more thing I’ll say about forget to more tangible tips. Because they do want you to just get this and know that I do this, I would never ever tell you leave you something that I’m not doing personally. I think a lot of times we come to this idea of okay, I have to be healthy now that means not this not this not this. In a lot of times we’re picking this up from the news, the media, the culture of what we think is bad. Dairy is one of those things that can be super demonized in the culture. And I think it’s very personal. If your body handles dairy Well, there’s obviously scales of better for you dairy than not how it’s made. And that’s also interesting. A lot of you I know listening to this will do the drink raw milk. And that’s like worlds different from what a lot of people in the health world will say, only have like almond milk don’t have any real dairy. So there’s always differing ideas. And again, I’m kind of in the middle where I see a lot of the I understand how probiotics are really good for you. And the fermented foods, which tends to be big in that kind of more raw milk mentality culture. But then I also understand that dairy is inflammatory for most people research most research shows that okay, I’m gonna just speak really carefully here. But most people agree in the health world that dairy is we at least get it in most stores. Super pasteurized and whatnot can be inflammatory for people. I don’t know if that would be the same with raw milk or not. Because I know, the other end of the spectrum again cites that raw milk can cure the world. So again, I don’t know I have nothing to say about that. I’m not a food expert. But I will say that I personally don’t like to just demonize any food group. So I don’t want you to think okay, if I’m being healthy again, it’s only Chicken Rice, broccoli, this that these are the health foods there are foods that are better for you and foods that are not so great for you.

And that’s where I just did a podcast episode recently if you listened to it about how to enhance the quality of your already healthy foods. And so that’s what you know, we want to do with our 80% of the time, but we don’t need to be so afraid about what those foods look like. So all this to say the other day for dinner, or no for lunch. It was for lunch. I had a plate of cheese and crackers and pepperoni. And here’s the thing. This is like the bettering your 80% I wasn’t having Wheat Thins which don’t have the best ingredients. I wasn’t having Triscuits I had almond flour crackers from all Be with fresh mozzarella. And pepperoni. So good old pepperoni, which yes is like a cured meat and whatnot. And that was my lunch. And yes, I was missing a vegetable, but I had carbs fat protein covered. And some people would look at that and be like, oh, like I didn’t eat so clean. Today I had cheese and crackers for lunch like, great. Did it fill you up? Did it fit your macros? Like, it’s, that’s fine, that was balanced. And I think this is very much easier said than done. I’m talking about big ideas here where if you have a tough relationship with food and have a tough time moderating your portions, this is something that’s going to take a bit. I get that and I understand that because I definitely came from not knowing how to moderate myself or everything, like there were no rules. So then, I think we tend to swing the pendulum hard if that’s you, I came from there are no rules around nutrition. I don’t know what’s healthy, I can’t really regulate myself. If I eat junk food, I eat a ton of junk food. So then I swung really heavy, I think in the beginning of getting into health and fitness of okay, only eating air quotes here super clean foods like ground turkey, and grilled chicken and whatever. And then I’ve now I’ve even dealt in the past years of okay, well, you’re not going to in very overarching terms here, you’re not going to die from having this every once in a while from having that every once in a while. So there’s better for us foods, but there’s room for the other stuff. Because again, food is also a different part of life. I was thinking about this. Back when I was in one of those super healthy seasons. It was right after I had my first son. And I was like only having everything that I was eating very paleo. So pretty much no grains, no dairy. Everything pretty much was from the ground or from a mother very few exceptions. Like we still didn’t have like butter in the house and they had coconut oil. The I didn’t have any white sugar in the house at all for years. And again, that’s totally fine if you want to live that way. And you’re like yeah, Brittany, that is the best way to go. More power to you. I just see again, most people cannot sustain that long term. But and if you can’t, that’s great. I did for a while. And anyways all this to say I had my little son and I was visiting with lady from church, and she offered me peaches and cream and it was like peaches and real cream. And I inside was panicking like oh my gosh, I have to eat like real cream. And that’s a crazy looking back. I’m like Britney, this like 70 something year old woman was sharing with it. Yes, I ate it. So let your mind be at rest. I did not refuse this sweet woman’s treat for me. But I remember her being like, oh, peaches are in season and I’ve got this beautiful cream like let’s have a treat. And now I’m like resonate with her so much. So I’m like yes, I want to be that older woman like having a young woman with a new baby in her home like yes, let’s have this beautiful peaches and cream like that was an amazing treat that I did not appreciate at the time thinking like yes, it’s real food like peaches first of all, great. And then yeah, cream, great cream. Now I haven’t my coffee and all that. But, you know, it was an experience. It was the hospitality, it was a sharing the moment together. And, you know, if you don’t have a great relationship with food, that kind of moment can make you panic of oh, shoot, what do I do? Oh, I’m gonna gain weight. Oh, I don’t eat dairy. You know, again, it’s fine to have these like mostly rules, I mostly don’t have dairy, I mostly don’t have gluten, whatever. But when we just make them real hard and fast, unless there’s an allergy or an intolerance, I think that we sometimes can miss out on opportunities where food is just more of an experience or it’s a way for somebody to show love and all of that. So a couple of tips for you here if you do have a hard time with your relationship with food. Some things that have helped myself and then ladies I’ve worked with is number one realizing when you see a certain food this is not the end all be all like you are going to see that food again. A lot of times we tend to eat like it’s not coming around again. The world’s ending tomorrow. And I’m laughing about it but seriously, I’ve been like that at holidays like well, we only have this at Christmas so I’m gonna go to town because we only have it once a year. Well, okay, maybe you do only have it once a year but are you getting that much more enjoyment out of it if you’re stuffing your face with it? Or would you still get the same enjoyment out of it if you had a moderate portion of it? Right I think it’s actually my ideal is to have like a moderate portion the first day hopefully get leftovers for the second day and have a moderate portion the second day and then it’s done. Or you can make it again, if it’s you know some cookies that your aunt makes that are the best cookies I’ve ever had in your life and you only have once a year rather than having 25 at Christmas maybe you just learn how to make them or you find a fun little bakery that has them and you get them in July so you have Christmas in July and Christmas or Christmas or whatever the case is. But example of this. My kids and I were just talking about this this morning because we were talking about donuts for whatever reason. And
we go get doughnuts once a year after we get a Christmas tree and these are like really hearty amazing doughnuts local the buffalo Paulus doughnuts if you’re in the area, and they make this amazing cannoli donut, and I always get it when we after we get our tree, and then I literally always take a nap, like, I cannot eat this donut. And every time I’m like, I’m just going to have a half because I know it’s gonna make me fall asleep, then I cut it in half, I eat half, this is like three years strong, at least, that I eat the other half right after, and then I fall asleep. This is to a tee. So that’s great. That’s fine. What was the point of that? Oh, that I know, I’m doing that once a year. So no big deal. I don’t sweat it. But if that day, I’m like, Well, I only do this once a year. So I have to have five of these doughnuts. That’s just not good for anybody. It’s just gonna make you sick, it’s probably gonna make you not like that food. So try to remember whether it’s your the most amazing cheesecake that your grandma makes, or it’s a pasta or it’s a this that whatever, you could see that food again, you can find that food again, even if you’re visiting that part of town like, you will see that food again, you don’t have to.

Another thing I think is helpful is not. This sounds contradictory to what this whole podcast episodes about but not making food, the end all be all thing. This really helps in social situations, where a lot of times like it’s so blown up in our minds, maybe before an event or actually during an event that we can think of nothing else except for the food. Like we’re so hyper focused on what am I going to eat what Oh, like that buffet tables calling, they have to walk back to it, when we can focus on other things on going to talk to that person on helping out with the kids at the party on whatever else. It’s almost like foods, the afterthought now just talked so much about how food is the experience, it’s a sharing and all of it’s still true. But if you have a hard time, like also with moderation and removing yourself from the abundance of food, I think it’s really helpful to do this, like this started happening for me just inadvertently when I had kids, because it’s like any social event we go to, I’m usually like running around chasing kids with the husband. So I don’t have as much time to hyper focus on the food, where I think before it was harder for me to peel myself away from where the appetizers were, you know, and walk away from it. So I think it’s helpful to like, get what you’re gonna get, walk away, start some conversation with people, this is a big difference I see with people who have a healthy relationship with food, or who don’t, it’s not that maybe it’s just in the treatment of it. And in the mentality around it. Like if you have a healthy relationship with food, you’re able to move on, enjoy the rest of the party, enjoy whatever else you’re doing, if you’re out on a date with your husband, like you might order the same thing. It’s just maybe that person with a good relationship with food. They wanted to get the fries. So they kind of balanced their carbs, they’re, they’re eating it, they’re enjoying it. They’re if they’re hungry enough to eat the whole thing. They eat the whole thing. If they’re not they take some home, but they’re focused on the Congress, taxing with their spouse, on whatever ambiance you guys are out, looking around, all that kind of stuff. Versus the person who doesn’t have a great relationship with food might do all that same stuff. But he’s thinking oh, I’m gonna have to order the carbs. I wish I could have the bottom. If I was skinnier. I could have the banana fries. Oh, I really want the dessert. I wonder if he’s gonna ask him I want dessert. Like are we gonna do dessert? No, I shouldn’t do dessert and then you’re not focused on anything else. And I know I’ve done this I’ve been there where these things are the focal point like you’re at a girls night and you’re like, Oh no, I shouldn’t go back up and get more food. Yes, I showed it it’s an internal debate you’re not really even present in what’s going on in the atmosphere. So I think the last tip joined with that of just remembering that you’re going to be around that food again is helpful and then trying to focus elsewhere it’s kind of that idea to like, if you’re hyper focused on your own I’m not talking about food here but just on your own happiness like Am I happy? Am I happy right now my fulfilled you’re probably going to find ways that you’re not happy where if you’re focused on other people and serving others on being a light on spreading joy you know, all those things that were called to do. You’re just naturally happy because the focus is not so on you. Okay, law last tip I think sorry, my phone went dark is well being able to stop that is just kind of a trademark of those who have a healthy relationship with food and those who don’t is sometimes their barriers Okay, great. Bernie again, like you’re saying all these things, but this is assuming I can walk away from the buffet table to assuming I can, you know, just have a little bit of something. Like I mentioned, I think this is an ongoing journey. I don’t think this is great. All of a sudden I wake up and I feel fine with food and I know that I can sometimes enjoy things and sometimes not. And I’m super balanced. You know that is great. That is the ideal that you will have a lot of peace when you get there. It takes a while. Being able to stop is difficult. I think this one comes very comes down to knowing thyself. There are some things I have a hard time stopping with. So if that’s you, and there’s like one or two things, maybe consider just not having them in the house, I know you have probably other people to consider. And I do as well. It just I guess I haven’t maybe my kids aren’t old enough to have put up or a bottle here. But ice cream is one of those things, five ice cream and a half gallon or a gallon size and house, I’m going back to thing with a spoon multiple times a day. And it’s going to be gone in two or three days from mom with her spoon going back and forth. But we can go out for ice cream, I can get ice cream, no problem. And then it’s no issue is down the house. You can’t I don’t think do that with everything right. And I know that sometimes people who struggle with emotional eating, it doesn’t really matter what the food is, they’ll find something to kind of go to town on. So obviously this can’t work in every scenario. But there are little tricks that we can employ. Even if you do just have trouble in general walking away. Like, last week, my sisters and I were together, somebody had a bag of salt, vinegar chips. I mentioned that. And I was like, oh solid on your chips. I haven’t had these in forever. They weren’t even any kind of healthy chip. They were not kettle, we’re not no seed oil, they were just probably lays on the new chips. And my sister had asked for more. I had had some as well. And she’s like, I was like, Oh, do you want me to just bring the bag? She’s like, No, I was like, Okay, well, that makes sense, because that’s a tip I would say but you know. So pouring yourself a single serve portion, which doesn’t necessarily have to be the serving size, but a portion, say two portions, whatever. But putting it on something that is not straight out of the bowl straight out of the bag straight out of the serving is going to be a cue to your body to help you stop because it gives you that check point of when you have finished that serving like Oh, am I getting more, it’s more of a conscious decision. Versus just you know, you’re in a pint of ice cream and you never look up and then you’re like, Oh, before you know it, it’s gone. So that is what I have to share with you on relationship with food. And I just hope circling back to kind of the beginning here, you can understand that there is a happy medium, wherever you’re at. in health and fitness, if you’ve been at this long time, or you are newer, you can enjoy there’s a place for like the full fat, full sugar apple pie. And there’s a place for the Paleo brownie, or the protein pancake, or whatever else, we want to fuel our bodies very well 80% of the time, maybe 90% of the time, if you just love feeling so good. But we can also incorporate these other pillars of what’s out there of other cultures of how, like something somebody might cook for you and it might be a higher carb than you’re used to. Or they might be using real butter and you know, usually use your butter or whatever, but it’s not going to kill you, you will be just fine. We can have moderate portions and get true enjoyment out of food looking at food as a sense of enjoyment, and community and hospitality as well as as fuel. Alright, I hope this was helpful. Thank you so much for joining me today. And next episode, we’re going to talk about five steps to naturally boost your energy, which I don’t know about you, but I could absolutely use that list. So we’ll go over that next time. I hope you ladies have a great rest of your day and I’ll talk to
you next time!

Time stamps:

  • Welcome to the podcast! 0:02

    • Welcome to the healthy catholic moms podcast.

    • Today’s topic, food and its role in life.

  • Food is fuel, food is comfort, and food is nourishment. 2:38

    • Food is either making you healthier or sicker.

    • Food is healing and nourishing.

  • If you do not venture down the right road, you will go off the rails. 5:36

    • Ab 20 eating, 80% clean foods, 20% treats.

    • Why yo-yo dieting is not good.

  • When you’re in a season of life where you want to achieve a goal, it’s okay to set high achieving goals. 7:24

    • Prioritizing a goal for a short season.

    • Balancing a balanced lifestyle with a goal.

  • You can enjoy food. 9:49

    • Brittany loves Italian food, baking and cooking.

    • The issue of portion sizes in America.

  • Dairy is one of those things that can be super demonized in the culture, but it’s very personal. 12:18

    • Dairy is not a bad thing.

    • Raw milk is inflammatory for most people.

  • What’s better for us foods? 14:44

    • Lunch for 80% of the day, cheese and crackers and pepperoni.

    • Modifying portions.

    • Food is a different part of life.

    • Peaches and cream and real cream.

  • What to do if you don’t have a great relationship with food. 18:02

    • Food is an experience and a way for someone to show love.

    • Tips for people who have a hard time with their relationship with food.

  • Not making food the end all, be all thing. 21:05

    • Not making food the end-all be-all thing.

    • Healthy relationship with food.

  • How to stop eating when you’re stressed. 23:26

    • Remember that you will be around food again.

    • Well-being able to stop is important.

    • The importance of serving yourself a single serving of food.

    • The happy medium.

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