Healthy Eating: Huel

Heathy Food: Why I Quit Eating My Meals & Started Drinking Them Instead

Remember Soylent Green? It was a Sci- Fi movie about a dystopian society where the greenhouse effect and overpopulation led to mass unemployment and a food shortage (scary right?) The main source of food was Soylent Green. A manufactured complete food to meet all your nutrition needs. Sadly, instead of being rich in plankton it turned out to be made of people.

The idea of one food to complete all your nutritional requirements may sound like it’s straight out of Sci-Fi. But that’s what Huel is. Complete food. And not only is it people free- it’s vegan.

Healthy Food

Eating healthy sounds easy. But the reality goes more like this:

  1. You start off with the best intentions.
  2. Fill your trolly with a colourful array of fruits and leafy greens.
  3. Get over-confident because you’ve eaten two pieces of fruit for breakfast
  4. Then get overwhelmed by work.
  5. Grab a snickers to tide you over on your journey to the gym.
  6. Open the fridge to realise half your veg is wilted and you’re too tired to cook.
  7. End up eating your housemate’s emergency pizza (Sorry Dave). And consoling yourself with biscuits

Well, that’s what it was like for me. I was sick of wasting food, constantly hungry from the gym and always snacking on what I could grab (which was never a mixed salad from Wholefoods).

So when my brother suggested trying Huel for a month I thought: Why not?

Healthy Eating Huel

Day 1: Difficult Roads lead to Beautiful locations

Huel

Huel is a nutritional shake. Their mission is “To make nutritionally complete, convenient, affordable food, with minimal impacts on animals and the environment.” This was a massive motivator for me. I’ve always hated wasting food and had been looking to change my eating habits. Huel seemed perfect and the philosophy behind it mirrored my own feelings about food.

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Banana Smoothie with Huel

I’d be lying if I said it was smooth sailing though. Here are some of the hurdles I had to over come:

  • It’s an acquired taste. Not unpleasant. Just takes some getting used to.
  • Drinking my meals made me yearn for solids. It was like being reverse weaned
  • I would be full from Huel but mentally hungry for other people’s meals
  • I kept getting the balance wrong and had to eat it with a spoon.
  • I tried to shake it up on the go, but did not have the upper body strength to do it properly.

But difficult roads do lead to beautiful locations. I started thinking about the positive changes I had been able to make to my life:

  • My shopping bill was halved- and I wasn’t starving myself
  • I wasn’t depleted after Boxing or the gym
  • I was getting my daily nutrients.
  • Even when I was in busy I had two healthy meals a day
  • I wasn’t snacking in-between meals because I was full
  • I was eating vegetarian at least 3 times a week, and vegan at least once
  • I wasn’t wasting as much food and could be proud of the fact I was contributing to a more sustainable way of life

It’s month two and I’m powering through my second bag. I’ve learned to adjust my blend so its a consistency I like. I add berries and fruit for variety. I even added some of the mocha flavouring and it was actually a really nice breakfast drink.

Heathy Eating, but you can still have a brownie

You can bake with it. I can’t do this. My Huel still comes out lumpy

I still eat what I want, but time and circumstance aren’t affecting my choices.

If you care about the environment, want a nutritionally balanced diet, or are trying to eat less meat try Huel. 

 

Get a discount and help a beige girl out.

Numbers game

Women who sleep with my boyfriend, then have the cheek to comment on my sexual history will be verbally decimated.

There is nothing that will get a woman more angry than finding out she’s being cheated on.

Oh wait, how about his side chick calling her promiscuous.

“He thought that because you’ve slept with so many more people than him that you wouldn’t be happy with him. He was always worried.”

Yeah, that happened.

A married ‘Christian’ woman who had been looking for Jesus in my ex’s boxers, was using my sexual history to justify  her arseholery.

I should have pointed out the irony, but why confuse her further with fancy words?

I’d love to say it was the first time my sexual activity has been commented on. But, as an asian woman I am used to people commenting on my dating life. Jokes have been made about my revolving door dating system. My parents stopped bothering asking if I will settle down. And I have learned to shrug off the questions fishing for confirmation of how many people I have slept with.

Not enough I say.

I am used to friends taking the piss about my dating life. It’s part and parcel of sharing it so openly on social media. It’s funny. I have no problems with it. So why should anyone else?

But, oh they do. And rather than accept that it’s their issue, their insecurity and their choices, they want to make it my issue, my insecurity and about my choices. All of a sudden it’s all about numbers.

The more open minded people I meet seem to have no problem with how many people I have slept with. They also tend to have slept with significantly more people than I have. So why would they care?

As long as you’re the lower number you’re fine.

Funnily enough, I have seen the same nonchalance disappear when it’s turned out I’ve slept with more people than they have. Then they spit out their Starbucks, awkwardly mumble something about doing what you want with your body, before quickly leaving.

Probably to call a group of women together for an orgy to get their numbers up.

It’s a strange phenomena. It doesn’t make me regret a thing. Just taught me to never share numbers, or waste too much time on people who seem obsessed with mine. The issue is clearly their own.

Nothing good comes from sharing numbers.

Unless they’re phone numbers for hot guys you’re going to unashamedly bang.

Match

Liking the same breakfast cereal isn’t compatibility

Every now and then I see a profile on Tinder that perfectly matches mine.

It mirrors my likes and dislikes, and line for line appears to be  directly responding to my own profile.

It’s uncanny.

A smile will spread across my face and I will think to myself ” Did this fucker rewrite his profile to mirror mine, then superlike me?”

OK a bit arrogant, but come on. It’s too much coincidence. And I’m not the lucky kind.

A shared love of tequila and sarcasm? A dislike of drugged wildcats and sexually menacing texts? That’s not compatibility. That’s common sense. I don’t put any of my genuine interests on a Tinder profile.

I’m wary of anyone who I’ve got a lot in common with. In the age of all access information all it takes to find out what makes a person tick is a shrewd analysis of their social media.

Despite being a cynic, I am a romantic. Just not your garden variety. While other little girls dreamt of getting married, I was normally crawling around in dirt, pretending I was living in a post Apocalyptic society. Foraging for berries to survive on. Building a time machine out of twigs and paper.

My romance was never about that part of a fairy tale. I liked boys. They were fun and liked to do fun stuff. But I didn’t want to wear a bedsheet for one, not when I could be fighting a robot. I wanted the kinship. A friend. A partner in crime.

I grew up watching my parents disagree on everything, which had a profound impact on me. Their only common ground was a point of origin. They’d argue over something as arbitrary as a potato.lobster

Getting along and common ground mattered to me. A bit too much perhaps.

After watching The Lobster, I got to thinking about all the whimsical common ground that I drew on to keep relationships going. Any eclectic similarity would do. He wears glasses. He does a good Terrence Stamp impression. He too knows the disappointment of never getting a Mr Frosty.

I would let that tiny bit of common ground be the focal point that I meditated towards through every argument, disagreement and stumbling block.

Until I fucking hated Terence Stamp and Mr Frosty.

Common ground is just a foot in the door. Maybe I’ll try the window this time.

Hell is Other People

The hunt for digs is on. What fresh hell will I discover this time round.

I hate flat hunting.

It’s a reminder that you can put a price on freedom and it’s somewhere between  £600 and £800 pcm. It’s a small price to pay for sanity I suppose. That’s only if this group of flatmates doesn’t drive me up the wall.

On the whole I’m a live alone type of gal.

I did it for 5 years quite happily and enjoy my own company. There was no one to answer to. I could have whoever I wanted over, for as long as I wanted. No one complained about me smoking, or told me I couldn’t have a pet. I could dance around in my underwear eating Cheetos, listening to Nina Simone.

They were truly great times.

The only downsides were when I’d freak out after a Special Victims Unit marathon and barricade myself in the bedroom with the cat for protection. Or when my pervy landlord would decide to pay a visit while I was in the shower.

It was still bearable for a rent controlled, two bedroom apartment in an up and coming part of Mexico City. And all at the bargain cost of £350 a month.

I should never have left.

I definitely shouldn’t have moved into student housing.

Sharing a bathroom is the quickest way of learning that hell is other people. There’s nothing like realising someone’s been using your razor to shave their face, or your Femfresh to shower, to make you want to use their toothbrush to clean the thick ring they left in the bath tub.

I don’t like inconsiderate people.

How do you fail to realise that your hair won’t clean itself out of the drain?  Or that screaming about your love life with your rabbi over Skype at 11pm on a school night isn’t considerate?

It’s a catch 22 situation.

They seem nice, like all people do in the wild. But you’re only going to really get to know them by living with them. Sometimes it’s great- like my first flatshare in Barcelona- or the well intentioned, albeit stingy, clown who would practice his schtick on me.

And sometimes you are woken up by a woman who has decided to dress exactly like you, in your clothes, and even squeeze her size 5 feet into your size 3 Nikes.

It’s like Russian roulette. Only instead of shooting yourself, you may end up with a flatmate who gets drunk and mutters menacing threats through your door, as you cry into a body pillow.

Let’s hope speed flat mate hunting holds a regular couple of alcohol loving, neat freaks to bunk down with.

Pray for me.

 

Life as we know it

The future looks more like the past than the past did.

When I was a kid, I thought that in 2005 I would have those self lacing hi-tops from Back to the Future and be living in a Jetsons style apartment in space.

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The future

The technological advancements have been amazing. Even if I do seem remarkably underwhelmed a lot of the time.

Why can’t I Whatsapp underground? Why won’t my internet work faster if I click a thousand times every 5 seconds?

I suppose there’s a disappointed child in me that wanted the future where pizza rehydrators existed.

Despite technological advancement and surface improvements, we continue to live on shaky foundations. As an animal we’re a real show off. Look at how clever we are, we can fit a camera on a phone. But we’ll continue to perpetrate ideas of race superiority, act violently and bomb the brains out of each other, because we’re retro like that.

Maybe that’s why Lavish Reynolds chose to stream the moments following her boyfriend’s shooting. Use our technological advancements to showcase our failures as a society. We’ve failed to progress if even one person is being treated this way, let alone thousands. It’s even worse that others make excuses for it, or try to downplay serious social injustice.

Killing people is wrong. Acting out of hate and prejudice is wrong. Controlling people through fear is wrong.

It’s like that film California Man. Yes, they dressed him up so he could fit into Encino life, but he was a caveman and continued to behave that way. That’s how humanity has started looking to me; like a PG Tips advert where the chimps have gone feral.

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Let’s have a cuppa. We’re not animals.

We’ve all got a brain. We can all think. Reflect. Take responsibility for our own lives. Our own actions. Yet so many people would much rather make excuses for their behaviour. He scared me. She was provoking me. So and so says we should be wary of those people. Why don’t we just think for ourselves? Why do so many people think they are exempt from basic human decency? Why do so many people buy into the crap spouted by hateful people, blindly assuming they have our best interests at heart?

Why abdicate your own reason in favour of someone else’s?

Erich Fromm called it The Fear of Freedom. It was too much to be responsible for our own decisions and use our free will responsibly. What if we made a mistake? The majority would rather be told what to do. How to think. Where to shop. Who to blame. Then it wasn’t their fault. It was what they had been taught/told/shown.

But the ‘He told me to do it’ defence doesn’t hold up.

We advanced too fast and weren’t mentally prepared for it. But a handful of opportunists were. Peter Parker got the “With great power comes great responsibility’ talk. What did we get? Pictures of my dinner, smartphones and Kris Kardashian’s pasta primavera recipe.

Distractions.

They released the self lacing hi-tops a few months back.

Oh, how far we’ve come.

Jobless in London

Unemployment, my old friend…

I think that my job search has managed to go from bad to worse, today being the biggest disappointment since finding out Ben Kingsley wasn’t (and then was) Indian. It was a confusing childhood rife with misinformation. I blame Gandhi myself.

I went for a job today, expecting to sell myself for an advertising post. What I almost ended up doing was going to Worthing to watch someone handing out Beauty Salon promos for no basic wage. I probably would have got on a train had it not been for another girl piping up to say it wasn’t for her, giving me the opportunity to say “Ditto” and run off.

I should have twigged something was off when I caught a glimpse of their morning mantra/pep talk. Screaming and shouting in order to prepare for “sales battle”, and ruining Ali’s immortal ” I’m gonna float like a butterfly, and sting like a bee,” were definite red flags.

This wasn’t my sales approach. I’m more of a sarcasm over wine kind of girl.

I hope this spate of bad job interviews ends soon; it’s costing me a fortune in comfort shopping. Today I bought a DKNY purse. It’s blue. To match my mood.

I give up.

I mean who do you have to stalk to get a job in this town? it’s not like I haven’t put myself out there. There has been a lot of putting out, and none of it fun. IMG_5735

I blew my last job interview on the grounds that my interviewer didn’t think I would be a good fit.  I may have gone a bit overboard on the professional look, and was way more serious than I normally am. In my own defence, I’ve been unemployed for a month now and if I was emanating a serious, or even desperate vibe it was probably because I was sweating out the last of my deodorant stick, at the end of a travel card, in a suit that was about to fall apart at the seams.

With that image in mind, I actually respect them for not giving me the job; I must have looked constipated and severe. Who wants that in the office?

They tell you not to lie in interviews, and they’re right. When they asked me what I did for fun, tequila sprang to my mind. But reading sounded more professional. I didn’t know tequila was the right answer. I would have come to the interview in the Hooter’s outfit I bought off Ebay, and got them to do jelly shots off me if I had.

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Bet you’re glad you did all that

What did I know about the method to their madness? Did Mr Miyagi make any sense when he asked Daniel San to wax his car instead of teaching him to roundhouse Johnny to the face?

Maybe I’m just not the kind of person who can be measured by other people’s standards.

This is the moment when I realise that I can’t work for anyone else, and try to set up my own business, which then goes from strength to strength, ending with me admiring the cityscape from my penthouse, side by side with my gorgeous husband and a Martini.

Only I still haven’t figured out what I  can do that gets me a penthouse flat in London and a hot guy.

Call girl? Lottery winner?

I don’t think I’m ready to work for myself. I’d watch reruns of Fraiser and eat French Fancies until I felt like doing something more productive, like eating mini Battenbergs and watching Only Fools and Horses.

Unless an opening for French Fancy tester opens up, I will just have to suck it up and keep trying.

British Comedy

Goodbye Europe. I always loved being inside you.

Since Thursday’s vote I’ve been a whirlwind of emotions.

Mainly disbelief and embarrassment.

I didn’t vote for Cameron and can’t say I’m sorry to see him go. But I was able to put my personal feelings aside to vote for something I believed in. A unified Europe.

Unlike some voters, who decided the thinking part was optional and eenie meenie minie moed our way out of a Union I was proud to be a part of.

Democracy has never looked like more of a farce. Especially when you listen to the motivation behind some of those Brexit votes.

 

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Oh Sunny, how do you not understand how a vote works?

 

Now as someone who knows a few Brexit voters, I can say not everyone is a xenophobe, ignorant about the EU, or the voting process.

Some were the children of immigrants and even so wanted to vote out. Not because they hate foreigners, not because they thought their eggs would be better from British chickens, and not because they expected mass deportations.

Some did it because they saw no future in the EU and genuinely believed the move could be better for the country. And they had their right to exercise that belief through their vote.

Whether you like it or not, that’s what democracy entails.

However the reasons below are a pretty compelling argument for an IQ test before you get a vote:

  • You didn’t think your vote would count.
  • You got gypped out of five euros last time you went to Disneyland Paris.
  • You hate watching the Euro Championship.
  • We never fucking get any points in Eurovision.
  • You magically want to see the country restored to all white pre- war Britain before you kick the bucket.
  • You think we are now going to become like Alcatraz and no one will be able to get in or out.
  • You believe thousands of immigrants and migrant workers will be frog marched out of the country and you will be given a pile of cash.

The backlash of videos, memes, tweets and updates have been hilarious. If you don’t laugh you’re bound to cry. More so when some of the dumbest points being made are given so earnestly. Full of confidence. Completely devoid of any doubts.

As one smiling lass put it:

“Britain’s on the map now!”

Yes, my moronic compatriot. That’s what mattered. Visibility.

There has to be a sitcom in all of this.