What’s your “oh, screw it” food?

by Camille on February 16, 2011


I’ve had dietitians inform me dozens (maybe even hundreds) of times that white rice is nothing more than empty calories–that is to say, devoid of any real nutritional value–and should be eaten sparingly, if at all.

You know what? I eat it anyway, at least twice a week, and I don’t stress out about it. It’s delicious (particularly the way my husband makes it, Puerto Rican style: medium-grain, fairly sticky, cooked with some olive or canola oil and a decent amount of salt), and it makes meals so much easier.

This isn’t to say that I eat a ton of rice at a time; I consider it a side dish, and pair it with healthy foods, like black beans and lean beef or vegetable stir-fry and edamame. But in my opinion, life’s too short to not have at least one less-than-perfect food that you consume without guilt–diet rules be damned. What’s yours?


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February 16, 2011 at 5:15 pm


Claire February 16, 2011 at 5:27 pm

I would say either homemade pizza (you know the large, white, doughy crust you buy at the grocery store that’s pre-made and full of sugar, fat and salt, that you top with two slices of mushroom and a ton of cheese and call it a day!?) or banana bread. I looooooooooove banana bread and I’ll eat it anytime it’s there (whether it’s made with lots of sugar and butter or not!) The rest of the time, I’m pretty good and making healthy choices!

Sheglova February 16, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Wienerwurst, knackwurst, and salami from a local German deli in So Cali. They are imported from Germany and are of a higher quality than the common US varieties but not exactly the mean-lean-source-of-protein I usually pick for my dinners or lunch sandwiches. Always a big hit when used as an occasional treat. : )

Camille February 17, 2011 at 9:24 am

Claire–I think that’s what it’s all about: making healthy choices 80-90 percent of the time.

And Sheglova–that sounds fantastic!

Rosie February 17, 2011 at 10:24 am

Good crusty and yeasty bread-even if it isn’t whole grain!

Lauren February 17, 2011 at 12:31 pm

I loved this post Camille! I’m currently in the process of becoming a nutritionist, and once I actually have some clients to consult :) one of the most important things that I will tell them is to allow yourself to have something bad every once in a while. Trying to lose weight or change your eating habits is not a quick fix or fad diet; it’s a lifestyle change. And telling someone who has just decided to make this change that they can never ever ever have McDonalds again will make them want to give up right away. It’s all about moderation. I love this quote by Katherine Hepburn: “If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun.” That being said – my “oh screw it” food is Kraft Dinner, with Ketchup…mmmm…

Claire February 17, 2011 at 7:55 pm

I agree with Camille and Lauren, to truly be healthy and happy you need to indulge and have fun once in a while!

Lauren Slayton February 18, 2011 at 6:55 am

When I first read this I thought you meant your splurge food (creamy cheese for me) but it seems you mean the food you eat despite an A+ nutrition rating. I put 1/2 and 1/2 in my coffee and a lot of it. It’s Ronnybrook/good stuff but it’s not lowfat or almond milk or anything I’d recommend. I am also a rice love (brown/black/red you name it), I share that with you not sure many people love it.

LaurenF February 18, 2011 at 7:27 pm

I have a few, but in general it’s sweets and eating out. I eat almost all of my meals at home, making nearly everything from scratch, but allow myself one meal out per week. I don’t pay any attention at all to the nutritional value of what I order–I consider it a treat, so I get whatever sounds good and don’t feel guilty about it at all. And if I make a sweet treat (like the raspberry chocolate cake I made for Valentine’s Day), I make no attempt to slim it down by eliminating fat or sugar. I guess I’d rather go all or nothing. Oh, and tea–I just can’t drink it without some sugar in it (hey, I’m a Southerner!), though I wish I could.

Rose March 8, 2011 at 5:01 pm

Love white rice, too. Plain. Spanish-style with red & green peppers, stewed tomatoes. Recooked in milk or coconut milk, maybe with some orange or lemon rind added, and some honey, or agave nectar, or sugar. Or Fried Rice. Do Rice Krispies count????

I do enjoy brown rice as well. But it’s just not an “oh, screw it” food.

Love your blog.

Lucy April 2, 2011 at 12:04 am

What a great philosophy this is, and one that I believe whole-heartedly as well. My “oh, screw it” food is similar as well; pasta made of wheat flour instead of whole wheat flour or some other whole grain. We love the pre-made ravioli and it’s never made with whole wheat flour. Oh, screw it! ;)

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