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New year, new resolutions

The shop where I buy chicken ran out last weekend. Well, not completely: there were a few whole birds, some marinated segments and a few lonely boneless, skinless thighs kicking around. But the usual giant mountain of chicken breasts was gone.

According to the young man who packaged up a few of those leftovers for me, that Saturday morning hadn't been busy, but the noon-hour had been rammed -- and everyone seemed to only want chicken breast.

After I pointed out that it was the first Saturday the St. Lawrence Market had been open since New Year's and that the onslaught might be due to "get healthy" new year's resolutions, he had an "ah ha!" moment.

After all, that was part of the reason I was there buying chicken that day.

Come January, it's hard to avoid the wave of resolutions and bids for renewal. In my household, we had already chosen the beginning of the year to start a cleansing diet, since it's when we're usually all gluttoned out, post-holiday season. (Even if we hadn't, I would still have been challenged by the myriad tips, advice, admonishments and reports being offered from CBC's Live Right Now initiative)

I'm several days into this month-long healthy, eating regime, complete with its seemingly insurmountable "forbidden" list (No to red meat, white rice, dairy, sugar, wheat and alcohol: I've had to gear up for this since late October!).

However, I have to admit it hasn't been so bad -- especially since we started eating less meat and also eating more brown rice last year.

Aside from certain cravings (chocolate bars and fruit juices, of all things!), the biggest obstacles so far have been breaking habits (dessert after dinner), planning ahead vs just picking up lunch at the food court, and finding out actual ingredients -- there was a farcical early attempt to eat out at a Japanese restaurant that had us second guessing everything.

Trying out my new slow cooker, new recipes and new ingredients -- hello quinoa, farro and millet -- has been a fun way to stretch out my kitchen muscles, too.

After a month, my hope is that I will have added a host of new favourites to my cooking repertoire and a bunch of new healthy habits, too.

Did you make any healthy eating resolutions for the new year? What foods do you turn to for healthier meals?

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