A sudden craving for an orangesicle invaded my brain yesterday. I’m not sure why this happened. Perhaps taking care of a few outdoors chores triggered it. Maybe a suppressed memory was the cause. All I know is that suddenly the desire for an orangesicle was front and center in consciousness.
I walked to the supermarket to purchase a package, but discovered the orangecicles were sold out. The frozen foods manager double-checked and confirmed my disappointment. I thanked him for his trouble, then I stopped at the produce department and chose a cantaloupe to buy, because another craving appeared out of nowhere–a simple cantaloupe smoothie. The other ingredients were already in my fridge, so I purchased the melon and returned home.
After scooping out the cantaloupe’s seeds, I quartered the melon and placed spoonfuls of one of the quarters into the blender. I added a banana, a splash of pineapple juice, and a handful of ice cubes. After the combination was liquified, I poured the mixture into a tall, insulated tumbler to enjoy. I mentally compared the concoction with memories of the first cantaloupe smoothie I ever had. It was at a downtown hotel in Vancouver, British Columbia. Although I’ve forgotten the name of the hotel, I’ll never forget the tasty smoothie.
While sipping my own smoothie, I was glad that the supermarket had run out of orangesicles. The cantaloupe smoothie was more satisfying and filling than an ice cream treat could ever be. Besides that, ice cream has been on my taboo list ever since careful dietary scrutiny has been advised by my physician. Snacks should refresh the body, not merely satisfy cravings.
Most folks call these mini-meals “snacks”. However, many people who grew up before the 1940s (at least in my family) call them “refreshments”. My maternal grandmother used to call mid morning snacks, “lunch”. Our contemporary word is “brunch”. My step-mom insisted that we enjoy two snacks to supplement regular meals. She liked to serve sticky-rice with fresh fruit on special occasions. At other times, she’d serve small portions of leftovers from the previous night’s dinner as snacks.
Through trial and error I’ve learned that the best snacks are tidbits filled with bonafide food and nourishing ingredients. Such snacks leave me feeling energetic and satisfied. Sometimes I revert to calling them refreshments because such snacks really do refresh.
Due to health concerns, I cannot go for long stretches without eating something wholesome. Fasting is out of the question. The effects of hypoglycemia are real and scary, so I always make sure healthy snacks are nearby. For car trips, I pack a small, insulated cooler with fruits and peanuts or mixed nuts. The travel snack kit is a must have whenever I drive out of town.
Meanwhile, at home, my refreshments also include whole, raw fruit, multi-grain crackers and breads, Greek yogurt, and cheese. These are not only healthy; they’re my favorite go-to snacks. I keep them ready to eat in case I notice my blood sugar levels dipping. The jittery feelings are most likely to occur while mowing the yard or doing other labor intensive tasks. In a pinch, a few spoonfuls of peanut butter bring my metabolism back to normal.
Meantime, I’ve planned a mid-morning break for today. It will include coffee, a slice of sourdough bread, a slice of Monterrey Jack cheese, and a quarter-cup of mixed nuts. Those refreshments will keep me going until lunchtime.
The Blue Jay of Happiness quotes comedian, commentator, and former Minnesota Senator, Al Franken. “If 98 out of 100 doctors tell me I’ve got a problem, I should take their advice. And if those two other doctors get paid by Big Snack Food, like certain climate deniers get paid by Big Coal, I shouldn’t take their advice.”