Episode 15: Painting a Rainbow of Food

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3D LILA Update [1:47]

LILA thoroughly enjoyed herself in December, partaking in yummy foods at holiday parties.  However, she realized her mini 3D LILA had been mostly absent.  LILA has promised herself that she will bring out her mini-me more often.  After all, the purpose of 3D printing herself was to have a visual reminder of why she needed to make healthy changes in her life—as well as to see her progress.

It’s only a few weeks into January, and LILA has already run a marathon! Well, not all at once, but a marathon none the less, logging a total of 27.5 miles so far this year. This is a great start to completing the 1,000 Mile Challenge. Go LILA!

Interview with Chef Callie at Thistle [5:19]

In Episode 8, we learned about Thistle, a healthy meal delivery service in the Bay area. This week, LILA interviews Callie, their head chef. LILA loves their food and wanted to learn more about how her yummy meals are created each week.

For Callie, her interest in cooking started with her love of art as a child—using all the colors of the rainbow in her creations. As an adult, she realized that cooking was another medium to display her artistic tendencies. She could create an art piece on a plate by simply focusing on the arrangement and variety of food. This led to cooking school where she learned a holistic approach to the culinary arts.

Variety and Menu planning [11:02]

One of LILA’s favorite things about her meals from Thistle is the variety. Rarely is something repeated on the menu more than once, at least not in the same exact recipe or presentation. Callie says that vibrant and colorful food signifies nutrient dense food, an important component of healthy eating. She loves using “alternative” foods because it is more interesting and challenging when she’s cooking.

Callie explains that many factors are considered when planning a menu:

  1. Product quality—since Thistle delivers its meals, attention is given to choosing ingredients that will stay fresh.
  2. Macronutrient balance—creating the optimal balance of carbohydrates, protein, and fats in each meal.
  3. Presentation—using colorful fruits and vegetables that please the eye.
  4. Seasonality of food—choosing foods that are fresh and at their nutritional peak.
  5. Flavor—the food has to taste good!

Cravings and Purple Foods

LILA has noticed that when she eats her meals prepared by Thistle, that her unhealthy cravings and desire to eat “crap” goes away. She thinks that by eating a macronutrient-balanced diet, her body is getting exactly what it needs and is satiated.

LILA loves the names of the dishes that the chefs at Thistle create. They just sound delicious. Callie explains they have fun coming up with descriptive names for their food because they understand that their customers want to know what they are eating.  For example, that mystery purple vegetable might be a “Pickled Purple Dichon.” (Disclaimer: we had to look it up—it’s a radish.)

Fun things about Callie [22:45]

Favorite food: Sushi and Fried Sesame Balls with bean paste

Favorite technology: Cooking software, specifically the menu planning program Plan to Eat.

Be Brave [27:10]

LILA was inspired this week by an article written by Maria Shriver, “Today, Start Where You Are.” This message really resonated with LILA. It’s about starting where you are at NOW. Don’t worry about yesterday, focus on being the person you want to be TODAY.

As we all know, LILA is on a fitness and weight loss journey. But sometimes she gives in to temptation and eats something she shouldn’t. Does that mean that all of her healthy choices earlier that day don’t matter then? Absolutely not. LILA is reminded by Maria’s poignant message that it’s about starting where you are now. Stop beating yourself up, you’re not a failure in that moment of weakness.  After all, it’s not a race—it’s a journey.

Significant Quotes:


“Colorful food also signifies nutrient dense food.” [6:56]

“I have always been attracted to the challenge of creating meals out of limitations.” [10:28]

“The idea of cooking from the same menu everyday is so boring.” [12:35]

“I think about macronutrient balance in a given day, rather than a given meal.” [15:13]

“Everyone knows we eat with our eyes first.” [15:46]


“I need to remember that cheese is a like bad boyfriend.” [2:42]

“The mental gymnastics you must go through every week to prepare a menu must be epic.” [11:36]

“I keep the breakfast for dessert—because most of your breakfasts are like pie in my head.” [13:21]

“That’s a buffet of flavors, like a little party in my mouth at lunch today.” [17:03]

“Chemistry is just baking with stuff that would blow up.” [21:59]

Links Mentioned

Thistle: https://www.thistle.co/

Plan to Eat: https://www.plantoeat.com/

Maria Shriver’s blog: http://mariashriver.com/

Next week: LILA talks with Dave from OMSignal about their bra and the Quanitfied Self.


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