My food journey

“There is no food in your food” is the quote I really like in the movie “Say Anything”. There is basically no food in many food people eat nowadays, like fast food, junk food. Consume too much of those food, human also is being industrialized. Industrialized food make industrialized human.

This post is to celebrate my one month smoothie journey. It’s too soon to give any conclusion about results or benefit, but I’m glad with what I’ve done.

What can you expect in this post:
+ If you are also into smoothie and healthy food, you may get some info here. Specially if you also live in Ho Chi Minh city, you have more clue of what’re available here to put into your smoothie.
+ If you would like to know me better, here is what I eat.

My food journey is my sharing of being health conscious starting by food. First of all, I’m not health expert. I just learn here, there, experiment, feel … on my own. So just an old advice: before you use any info here, consult your doctor and your health advisor.

And everybody is different. Each person has different body, demand, preference, purpose. Like me, my tongue is quite easy-going. I basically good with any food. For me almost all of food taste good, except something too spicy, too awful.

It was not an advantage in cooking, since every food I cook, I feel it tastes good, (while others sometime don’t) so I don’t feel like I need to enhance my cooking skill anymore.

But it was there for a reason. My easy-going taste once was disadvantage, now is an advantage since it’s easier for me to eat something like raw and smoothie. I don’t say that raw and smoothie don’t taste good. It’s just sometime I just experiment so the taste doesn’t good all the time.

And I’m the one who kind of like something “mixing”, either food or drink.

———

So here is my food journey:

As I was born and grown up in a country which has abundant, cheap & delicious food – Vietnam, it’s both advantage and disadvantage. Advantage because I have fresh food available all the time, and yes, I ate lots of delicious food. Disadvantage since: I’ve eaten lots of good food, it’s harder to start with something like raw, smoothie … And delicious foods are everywhere which sometimes it was my internal fighting between attractiveness outside and the food I eat.

When I was much younger, I’ve heard that around 60% of Indians are vegetarian. I told myself: “what? what a suffer! They totally don’t eat meat in their entire life? So they can’t enjoy its taste”. As the time gone by, I aware more, I see that it’s happiness, they haven’t eaten meat since the day they were born, so they don’t have demand for it anymore.

In my family, my Mom had stomachache, so we basically avoid spicy food, and my Mom avoided sour food. We eat rice almost every meal of everyday and there are a meat-dish (pork, chicken, egg, fishes) and a vegetable dish (boil – stir fry – soup of water spinach, cabbage, beans …) or mixed between veggie and meat. We ate fried foods like: fried egg, fried fish, fried meat, spring rolls. Among meat, we consumed pork the most.

Here is a meal (lunch) at my family and my uncle’s family as of Feb 11, 2014 (close to lunar new year holiday). At my family (4 people), there were steamed sticky rice and green beans cook with gac fruit (the 3 flower plates), fried spring rolls, soup of potatoes with bone, stir-fry beef with celery. At my uncle family (3 people), there were steamed sticky rice, boiled chicken, soup of noodles with chicken internal organs; stir-fry kohlrabi, carrot and chicken internal organs; pickled onion.

And as you can see, we either sit at table or on mat, we use chopsticks.

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I keep that food style until I got into University, live with my cousins, then live in dormitory until I started working. To save cost, and because of sanitary reason, I cook my own food. There were times which I ate same food for whole day or even whole few days. I cooked silver carp fish quite regular.

When bringing home cook food to office was no longer allowed (due to smell reason), I put white rice into a white paper, fold it and put in my bag (didn’t create smell). Then noon time, I went out to a bench at a lake near my office, eat rice for lunch, expect to compensate by dinner and breakfast. Yes, that was my mindset about food by that time.

When I worked at a company in the Philippines, I was free to bring food to office. And everyone in the office’s impression about my food is healthy food. Yes, because they usually just eat rice with meat or just pandesal with cheese while I almost always have VEGGIE in my food. And I don’t drink beer, wine, soft drink. Yes, it isn’t enough for health but at least I was being health conscious.

Things change way fast after I met and being affected by Sharon and Jersey. My mindset is changed dramatically.

Raw food. Smoothie. No pork. Reduce red meat. No tofu. No milk. Fasting. Detox. No cooking oil. No over cook. No msg. Every thing is a new world for me.

It takes a journey to change, ton of effort to follow.

May-Sep 2014: I was eating alone in Manila. I tried to eat more raw, I just chopped things small and eat. It wasn’t good and easy to eat that way. But it was the best which I thought about.

My meal on May 28, 2014. Even when I see it now, I was amazed with what I’ve eaten. What … What is this? RAW salmon, was cleaned by vinegar, then dip into fish sauce and eat raw. A glass of calamansi juice. A bowl of rice with raw onion and garlic. A plate of RAW vegetables: tomato, red radish, peanut, yacon, carrot, chayote (sayote), lettuce, moringa (malunggay), mushroom, cucumber, violet lettuce, siniguelas.

I cooked chicken porridge for Sharon’s birthday (May 30, 2014)

Sep 2014 – Feb 2015: living with J-S: we do morning smoothie, lunch: cooked food, dinner: other stuff, sometime just steamed food.

Squash soup cooked by Jersey:

My pickled vegetable as Jan 2015:

Feb-April 2015: nothing much, was in new year holiday with lots of good food, then eating outside due to relocation.

April-Sep 2015: I mostly ate steamed food by rice cooker, sometime I do make salad, or fresh spring rolls.

My breakfast at home as of July 23rd, 2015. There was avocado not included in the picture.

My breakfast as of Aug 3, 2015: I rolled lettuce, violet lettuce, herbs, chicken, cooked rice in rice paper wrapper and eat with fish sauce. It tasted good, at least for me

My breakfast as of Aug 21, 2015: I mixed bitter melon, carrot, kohlrabi, violet cabbage, garlic, lime, salt, fish sauce, chicken and fried peanut. I ate them with rice. It tasted the best, at least for me. This breakfast costs around 15000 VND for material. Most ingredients bought from Big C An Phu supermarket.

———–

Sep 4 2015: I bought the first blender in my life and my smoothie journey started. (400MW Philips Blender at 561 Xo Viet Nghe Tinh for 550,000 VND)

Since Sep 4 until now, I’ve included 68 different types (include egg) or more into my smoothie. It’s a result of me trying more and more to find different things, as I want to take different nutritions into my body. I categorized them as follow, although some of them can be in another category, depends on each person’s opinion.

Vegetables (21): green cabbage, basella alba, Celery/cần tây, spinach/cải bó xôi, đậu bắp/okra, yellow & red & green bell pepper, broccoli, pennywort/centella asiatica/rau má, rau đắng (Brahmi/Bacopa monnieri), cải đắng, purple amaranth (rau dền tím), cải thìa (bok choy), xà lách corol (lettuce), nấm hoàng kim (mushroom), aloe vera, iceberg lettuce, bean sprout, young squash, cải ngọt, aganonerion, piper lolot, moringa.

Herb (11): Vietnamese balm/rau kinh giới, Purple basil/quế tây tím, rice paddy leaf (ngò ôm), sawtooth herb (mùi tàu/ngò gai), dill/thì là, sage/xô thơm tây, garlic chives/bông hẹ, coriander, rau húng lủi/mint, ngò tây/parsley, cilantro/ngò rí, rau mùi, Vietnamese crab claw herb/peperomia pellucida (rau càng cua)

Alkalizer (2): pink lemon (chanh đào), lemon

Edible flower (5): sesbania/bông so đũa, Hibiscus flower/hoa dâm bụt, bông điên điển (common sesban), thiên lý (telosma cordata), hoa mướp (Luffa flower)

Root vegetables/tuber/bulb (7): turmeric, ginger, red radish, white radish, beet, purple sweet potato, garlic

Fruit (19): red dragon fruit, jackfruit, durian, pear, pomelo, water apple (quả roi/mận), langsat (bòn bon), rambutan (chôm chôm), guava, grape, surinam cherry (sơ ri), breadfruit (sa kê), gac fruit, mít tố nữ (marang), rambutan, Muntingia calabura or Kerson fruit, bitter melon, tomato, beans

Those ingredients, I bought from An Phu supermarket, Big C An Phu, different markets and even harvest from my neighborhood. I’m not totally sure if the foods I consume are organic or not.

My one mouthful is around 50ml.

——-

Info from fitlive.tv:

+ Base veggie (2 or 3): bok choy (cải chít), cabbage (bắp cải), celery (cần tây), cucumber, romaine lettuce (rau diếp), zucchini (bí xanh). Choose things which taste good eaten together.

+ Leafy greens (1-3): broccoli stems (thân bông cải xanh), collards (cải lá), dandelion (cây bồ công anh Trung Quốc), kale (cải xoăn), red chard (rau cầu vồng), spinach (rau bina: rau chân vịt, cải bó xôi). Remove tough stem from collards, kale and chard. Consider the flavor when choosing combination: earthy, peppery & neutral. Those with thyroid conditions are recommended to limit cruciferous intake.  (Người bị bệnh sun tuyến giáp nên hạn chế rau thuộc họ cải).

+ Sweetener (1): beet (củ dền tím), carrot, grapefruit (bưởi chùm – cây lai giữa bưởi và cam), green apple, green pear, pineapple, strawberry, purple grape.

+ Alkalizer (1): lemon, lime. If removing rinds, leave the white pith intact for a valuable bioflavonoid and fiber boot. (Nếu bỏ vỏ, giữ phần lõi trắng còn nguyên cho nhóm sắc tố thực vật của họ chanh đầy giá trị và thêm chất xơ).

+ Detoxifier (1-2): basil (húng quế), cilantro (ngò rí/rau mùi), mint (bạc hà), parsley (ngò tây/mùi tây). For maximum nutrient yield, tightly pack leafy greens and herbs in a roll and gently nudge into juicer between two harder juice ingredients. (Để tối ưu hoá chất dinh dưỡng, quấn leafy greens và herbs chặt vào nhau và nhẹ nhàng đặt vào máy xay giữa hai thành phần khác cứng hơn).

+ Superfood: apple cider vinegar, cayenne (bột ớt khô), garlic, ginger, sprouts, turmeric, wheatgrass (cỏ mạch/cỏ lúa mì), spirulina (tảo Nhật), chlorella (tảo lục/rong tiểu cầu), maca/lepidium meyenii (sâm maca Peru), chia seeds (hạt Chia), bee pollen (phấn hoa), royal jelly (sữa ong chúa)

+ Others (don’t know yet where to classify): fennel (thì là), watercress (cải xoong), licorice (cam thảo), moringa (chùm ngây), bell pepper, onion.

Note: mint, licorice, soy bean, quinine, chasteberry, okra, granola, Sauerkraut (bắp cải muối) help to reduce sex drive.

————

My feelings about smoothie:

1) Fast and easy, need not to think too much.

I did ton of researches and reading, but just to find better way. Basically, I just can put the vegetables into smoothie. Sometime it just takes around 20 minutes or less for preparation, another 10 minutes or less to drink and clean. Unlike cooking, it takes more time. And we need to cook something first and something last, something put in the middle, with smoothie, everything is blended in the same time.

(khỏi vắt óc nghĩ món ăn mỗi ngày)

2) Not heavy full, but being full longer.

My stomach is so ease with smoothie, since it doesn’t heavy at all, but I don’t get hungry easily, even I go out and do lots of actions, movements. The hungry, come from the mind, not the stomach.

3) Open my mind: at least about food. I’ve eaten lots of things which I haven’t eaten them raw before. I don’t need to depend myself on rice as previously. (Years ago, I ate rice daily, even every meal. Since last year until now, I eat rice weekly, even monthly).

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Some notes:

+ I didn’t let myself hungry (or feel hungry), when I felt hungry, I fed myself by some cooked things (roasted or steamed).

+ I do let myself enjoy other foods beside smoothie:

when I’m at home, I roasted squash, butternut squash, potato, sweet potato, peanuts by microwave oven (from 2-6 minutes then let them in the microwave for a while). I cooked egg with tomato and sage by microwave oven. I cooked fish soup by rice cooker. I made salad. I cooked porridge of squash and beans. I cooked rice with chicken and beans. I cooked chicken soup with cải chíp, white radish, tomato, aganonerion and sage leaves.

when I’m outside, either be invited or not, I ate noodles (aware of msg), fried breadfruit, sweet potato, stir-fry vegetable food in pagoda, sweet broth (sometime I feel guilty about), cake, candy, delicacies.

I don’t need to be too much strict with myself.

——–

Sep 18, 2015: I had porridge of rice, squash & bean. I had smoothie with new ingredients, then I had a boiled tomato.

Sep 19 & Sep 24, 2015:

One thought on “My food journey

  1. I am a foodie so I enjoyed reading this blog entry. You know Pho would be a great slimming soup because it is not fried and it contains lots of vegetables. There are many foods in your Vietnamese cuisine that are good for you. I love the fresh spring rolls and steamed ones.

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