The summer of fruit (and disgusting eating habits)

I’m trying to incorporate more fruit in my diet.

Despite all that I love about it, fruit is something I neglect. It’s not something that I bother incorporating into the savoury lunches and dinners that I cook.

You may ask, but what about breakfast?

Thanks for asking, but I have to admit I often skip breakfast.

Yes, I know it’s important (before you start to tut at me). I swear I didn’t used to be like this. When I lived with my parents I ate breakfast everyday. It was necessary when I had to travel over an hour into uni for long days. It began when I moved out of my parents’ home. I started forming disgusting eating habits. Initially, I’d get lazier and lazier when leaving the house in the morning and the effort into making sure I’d eat something became more difficult. I attempted to eat once at work but I’d rarely get the chance. Now, I use the excuses that the combination of heat (or cold weather in winter) and not getting up until my bladder is forcing me out of bed for skipping breakfast altogether. My eating habits are disgusting.

Infrequent breakfasts. The disappearance of fruit.

I’m not saying there’s a direct correlation here between these two outcomes. But there’s a variable I haven’t discussed yet. Money.

Fruit is disgustingly expensive. A 125g punnet of blueberries for $4? I could buy meat for cheaper than that. So for the sake of maintaining a ~balanced diet my money is spent on proteins and vegetables and carbs. The real diet for the money-conscious ain’t got space for fruit. And while we’re at it, if you’re a little tight on the budget, the bleeding obvious and easiest way to save money is simply by eating less. Suddenly instead of three meals a day, you’re eating two meals a day. I think we’ve all been there at some point. Who can defy that kind of logic?

If you follow me on Twitter, you may see that I recently rejoiced my (99% confirmed) casual employment by hunting down and then purchasing avocados (#hassorbust). Because avocados are hella expensive. For the delicious privilege of those glorious creamy, Mexican-food-improving fruits, I paid $4 for just two – and that was a bargain. A bargain! It’s disgusting. I won’t even get started about lemons and limes because I will start typing in capslock and that doesn’t look nice.

Like my outrage at the price of fruit, my eating habits are disgusting.

But not always.

Recently I also tweet-bragged about how I visited my parents and devoured a glorious amount of lychees and mangoes (and then stole two limes to take home with me).

My love for fruit is not new.

Every time I eat a mango I remember when I was a child, my father would always cut the two round halves off the seed of the mango for my sister and I. Drawing parallel lines in one direction, turning 90 degrees and then drawing more lines so that a grid formed. But popped out, turned into the messiest, funnest and the tastiest way to eat a mango. Standing over the kitchen sink, of course, or else face the wrath of my mother for dripping sticky, ant-inviting juice anywhere else. Growing up relatively poor, my father would never eat the fleshy rounds themselves, but always eat the flesh surrounding the seed. How lucky we were.

The futile attempts to grow our own lychees and longans over the years only proved successful for a couple of seasons. But every now and then, you’d find my sister and I in our backyard with our parents picking literal fruits of their labour. Or being devastated in summer whenever a particularly ferocious storm would shake off all the fruiting buds of the longan tree. However, the dreaded papaya seemed to fruit year after year after year. Shut up papaya, no one likes you.

I remember eating homegrown oranges during winter to boost our vitamin C intake. Eating thawed-out durian (when they used to be only available from the freezer section of an Asian supermarket), cracked open over old Chinese newspapers, the smell wafting through the house and distinctly disliking it until eventually, somewhere along the way I started to enjoy the King of Fruits. Oh yes, now I love durian. And upon discovering durian ice cream, I was/am still hooked.

Perhaps I’m thinking about this too much. Fruit is a fruit is a fruit. Despite my association of fruit with being innocent and young, my parents and growing up – I lost sight of fruit. My love for fruit is not new.

I have disgusting eating habits.

And my summer of fruits is going to change that. By COMBINING THEM.

Wha-what?! BOOM. Yes. I’ve decided that fruit is just as important and by altering my protein-veg-carb diet I’m going to start forming some better eating habits.

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