We all know the saying about “Food for Thought,” which means anything that provides mental stimulus. But how many of us really think about our food? Not only that, but how many of us think about how our food is reflective of our personalities, our successes and failures or better yet, our blockages to success?
I read a post by another dietitian who examined “The Metaphysics of Your Refrigerator” or what your refrigerator says about you. She visited two friends on two separate occasions. Each friend had a cluttered refrigerator and each friend was a bit cluttered physically.
Although these women had abundantly full fridges, there was a sense of stagnation or lack of flow through their ice chests.
While reading this dietitian’s observation, where she paralleled the overweight state of her friends to their overstuffed refrigerators, I thought about the contents of my own icebox. What does my refrigerator say about me?
I know the contents of my cold-storage unit like the back of my hand. Hey, what’s that dark spot on my hand? Just kidding! I really do know what’s in my Frigidaire.
I label and date everything I make. I rotate my perishables using the FIFO rule (First In, First Out.) I am on top of food safety and sanitation in my domain.
But my fridge is also pretty full. So is that good or bad? How do we know when our life is full of the right kind of abundance versus the wrong kind of clutter?
My fridge is full because I took the time to fill it and to make the most of what I am so lucky to have. Before I buy groceries, I take stock of what I have and then build my purchases around my current items.
For example, this week I had some zucchini and yellow squash left over from last week’s produce purchases. I also had brown rice and lentils. I bought some leafy greens, a big bag of carrots, plus garlic and onions.
Most of my meals are vegetarian. Although it is not imperative to eat complimentary proteins at each meal, I do it to help ensure that my essential amino acids are met throughout the day. Grains and beans or lentils compliment each other by providing the essential amino acid that the other is lacking.
Similar to my quinoa cakes from the summer, I created a brown rice and lentil cake with shredded zucchini, yellow squash, shredded carrots, minced onion and garlic plus cumin, curry, sea salt and black pepper. I use brown rice flour, ground flax seed and a little water as a binder.
Form into small patties and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes on each side. Parchment paper on the baking sheet prevents sticking. Serve on a bed of greens. These brown rice vegetable cakes are nutritious, serve as a complete protein source and are delicious hot or cold.
I make the most of my food and waste nothing. Throughout the week, as I wash, peel and chop veggies for various dishes, I save the peels and tops in a container in the fridge. At the end of the week I put everything in a stock pot with water and herbs and simmer for an hour in order to extract every last nutrient. I end up with a very flavorful broth that I use to make vegetable soup over the weekend.
I am always so happy with myself for using everything that nature provided and for making soup from scratch and from scraps.
After chopping the leaves of fresh herbs for a recipe, I throw the stems in my juicer along with a carrot and an apple and make a fresh vegetable juice.
I have always been this way, frugal to a fault, but it’s out of respect and appreciation for life and especially for the life of the plant that provides the nutrients I need which help me maintain my strength to move through life. Nothing should ever be wasted. Everything has value.
Yet I know the laws of attraction and abundance. Part of me thinks that perhaps by being so frugal, I am saying to the universe, “Thank you, but I have everything I need.” This is true, though. All of my needs are being met.
Does my refrigerator full of fresh produce and brown rice say that I am able to thrive on very little or that I make the most of what I have?
I want to make sure that my fridge is not sending the wrong signals.
I believe it’s not just about how much you have but about how much you appreciate what you have. Are you grateful for your bounty or do you take it all for granted? What does your refrigerator say about you?
Elizabeth is a registered dietitian and certified holistic chef and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.