At the end of the first week of my foodbank challenge, I have to say it has been an interesting week as far as food is concerned. I’ve managed quite well with the food that I would have been allocated, but in all honesty, most of it is food that I would not normally eat.
That’s not in anyway a criticism of the foodbank, as the food it provides has to have a long shelf life and be fairly straight forward to cook, with the minimal amount of preparation.
I started the challenge on Saturday, with cereal and milk for breakfast. I soon realised that I could only have a small amount of milk on the cereal if I was going to have enough for the rest of the week. Consequently the cereal was pretty dry (either that or I normally have an unusually large amount of milk), but I managed to eek out the milk for cereal all week.
I did feel constantly hungry the first day, but I’m not sure if this was all in the mind. I think that I was fairly strict with the amount of food for the first few days, as I was worried that there would not be enough food for the rest of the week.
I have found that a lot of the processed food has very little texture to it and also left me with quite a bit of indigestion. Some days I wasn’t sure which foods to put together to make a meal, but it definitely helped having a small amount of fresh food to add to the tinned food during the week. I had tinned chilli with potato wedges, made from a fresh potato. I also had a jacket potato one day with a tine of beans and some grated cheese. My pasta sauce was mixed with pasta, a tin of sweetcorn and a tin of mushrooms and a sprinkle of cheese on the top. This made enough for two days.
I had super noodles which I really didn’t like. Tinned rice pudding had, for me, the most awful taste and texture, so I’m not sure that I’ll be having that again. I also ate more bread than I would in a normal week as it helped to fill me up.
I didn’t use any sugar at all, as I don’t have this in tea or coffee. I didn’t have any coffee at home, as I didn’t have enough milk and I can’t drink it black. I had herbal or fruit teas, again because I can’t drink normal tea black.
I did have one cheat this week and that was on Thursday when it was my mum’s 85th Birthday. I took her out for lunch, which I appreciate I would not have been able to do if I had been relying on the food bank, but as there are no other celebrations at the moment, it did not seem fair to not treat my mum on her birthday.
I’m really missing freshly cooked food and a wider variety of foods. It hasn’t probably been great for me eating so much processed food, but not snacking on sweets, biscuits etc during the day has probably been good for me. I am definitely a grazer so it’s been hard for me not just being able to grab what I want when I want.
So now I’m all ready for week 2!