Corn and our Beef with Immigration.

I recently watched the film, Food, Inc., as self-encouragement to complete a 25-day food and fitness challenge.  I knew the film would expose me to how bad processed food is for my body, but I didn’t expect to be exposed to root causes of illegal immigration.

On December 8, 1993, Mexico, Canada and the U.S., signed the North American Trade Agreement (NAFTA).  The goal of NAFTA was to eliminate barriers to investment and trade (wiki) between the three countries, and in theory it would help bring economic growth to all three countries.  There have been dozens of reports on the effectiveness of NAFTA and the agreement has been faced with many controversies. 

One very well documented truth is the increased demand of meat from Mexico (as of 2000, Mexico is the #2 importer of U.S. meat, wiki), which has in turn increased production in the U.S., which has led to U.S. corporations’ need  for more laborers.  In theory, the U.S. corporations would hire U.S. laborers, but instead the corporations go to Mexico and recruit, yes they go into Mexico to recruit, peanut-cheap labor.  Many of the undocumented workers who come work in meat processing plants are former Mexican corn farmers. 

In 2010, the U.S. government’s subsidies of corn totaled north of $10.1 billion and chargers of dumping (into Mexico) have ensued.  So when Mexican farmers are out of work, potentially due to extra-cheap corn that puts them out of business, and big U.S. corporations come to their home and offer them work and (illegal) entrance into the U.S., their choices are few.

The worst tragedy is that when immigration raids happen, it is the workers that get criminalized not the U.S. corporations that hired them in the first place.  Undocumented immigrants are hated and abused while we enjoy our cheap meat and corn.  Personally, I am also guilty of benefiting from owning Monsato’s stock (and other food companies), that’s going to change ASAP.

"Food Inc," has me furious.  Our tax dollars get used for the corn subsidies.  We get heart attacks, diabetes and fat from the terrible food we consume.  My people get criminalized, hated on, and once they’ve built a home in America they get deported and separated from their families. 

I wish we could all go on a 25-day Food and Hate Challenge— and lose the fat and lose the hate, increase our muscle mass and our knowledge.

Day 40: Twelve Pounds Later

Yesterday was the last day of the 40 day Makers Diet program.  I have lost twelve pounds in 40 days, but most importantly I have shown myself that I can finish what I started.  I will never go 40 days without eating something I am not suppose to eat, but my love-hate relationship with food is more love than hate these days. 

I love food, truly enjoy eating a good meal. I savored it, I picture it, it brings me joy.  But my whole life I have struggled with my weight, with eating a lot of bad stuff, and then trying to lose weight in five minutes.  My journey is far from over, truly it has just begun.

There were days during the last forty where I wanted to give up, where I looked at myself and said, well, this is just they way I will look.  But thanks to the encouragement of everyone around me and this inner strength that God has given me, I did not give up.  I am still thirteen pounds away from when I felt my sexiest, however, I no longer feel defeated when I eat unhealthy.  

Some people might think this new way of eating is very restrictive, but on the contrary it is freeing.  I no longer beat myself up for having a bad meal, I just make the next five meals according to my new standards— and that is victory for me. 

Training is over, now is real life. 

Day 17: Weird Cravings

Who in the world craves cottage cheese? Eggs for dinner?… People on the Maker’s diet.
I should have started phase two on Day 14, but given all the deliciousness I consumed while in Nashville, I extended phase one a few days. But today, day 18- I get to have cottage cheese and melon! I can’t wait to get to the office’s cafeteria.

Day 17 menu:

Breakfast: Omelet with tomato, onions, and spinach.

Lunch: Dig-in chicken, Brussels sprouts, and beets.

Snack: a few almonds and tea

Dinner: Picadillo with veggies and scrambled eggs.

Days 11-14 Re-do

Days 11-14 were non-existent.

I love to travel and to emerge myself in all sorts of local things. In Nashville it was the BBQ, the fried chicken and country music.

I can’t really let myself feel bad, I had the best fried chicken I’ve had in my life!

There were times I felt discouraged and guilty for going off the deep end. But I realized that I could never go to Italy and not have pasta or go to France and not have delicious bread and wine.

What I could have done however was some research on restaurants that had food I could eat for a few meals, so that I didn’t ‘cheat’ 100% of the time. At one point though, I just decided to enjoy myself, food is not my enemy. My attitude is, my own discouraging thoughts. And if this is really a life-style change then it has to work for the long term and it has to fit my life.

So, instead of starting phase two tomorrow, I am going back to phase one for one more week to re-start my system and my attitude.

I had a great trip, and I am already cooking yummy meals for the week.

Keep on trucking.

Day 5- Friday night date

I was super excited when I got on the scale this morning and it read almost 6lbs lighter, in 4 days?! It could be broken, but I think the better explanation is that, that is how much bad stuff I had in my body!! So 6 down, 15 more to go.

I always like hearing that there is no way I am 20 (now 15) pounds heavier than I was 2yrs ago, but I assure you, I am! Clothes don’t lie!

The other thing that really motivated me today was that others are taking the same leap I am, and that in a small way, I m helping them on their journey. Just like others inspired and are motivating me!

Tonight I went on a date and so I had to be very strict the whole day so I could let a little loose tonight.

Breakfast- 7am
Strawberry, blueberry, coconut milk, and almond butter smoothie

Breakfast 2- 10am
One boiled egg and coffee

Lunch- 12:30
Chipotle salad- again only with chicken, tomato salsa, fajita veggies and very little guac.

Snack 4pm
Blueberries and a few almonds

Dinner- I did the best I could while at Rosa Mexicana.

Guac with a corn tortilla
Grilled Fish- I did not eat the rice of beans
2 skinny margaritas

We’ll have to see what damage I did when I get on the scale on Monday. But tomorrow I am getting my Soul Cycle on, to combat the effects of the tortilla and booze.

Tomorrow is a new day!