Here is another topic that I think a good amount of fellow Aspies can relate to: an “abnormal” diet. I consider my daily meal plan to be rather unusual, at least compared to that of most other people around me. Much like with obsessive interests, I know that this is a fairly common thing among individuals who are on the autism spectrum. In one manner or another, what we like and do not like to eat on a regular basis somewhat differentiates from what’s considered “normal” in our society.
In this post, I will share some of the ways in which my average food schedule could be seen as odd or weird. This includes a couple of foods that I like to eat, what I typically chose to eat for certain meals, what I refuse to eat, and how I prefer to eat particular foods. This time I’m almost 100% confident that someone out there will be able to relate very closely to what I’m about to share.
Let’s start with breakfast. Now most people like to munch on things like eggs, cereal and milk, pancakes, waffles, and French toast. Here is what my typical breakfast looks like: a whole poppy-seed bagel (heated in the microwave for 40 seconds), two cheesesticks, a couple of carrots, and one or two pieces of fruit. Sometimes I will have some cereal as well, but never with any milk; I seriously cannot stand the stuff (on its own, that is). I’ll also eat things like donuts, bacon, and croissants if they are being served. You definitely won’t convince me to eat any pancakes, French toast, or eggs, and I might end up getting breakfast on my own if nothing I can tolerate is available. Also, if you think my typical breakfast today looks weird, I used to eat things like broccoli and leftovers from last night’s dinner for breakfast when I was much younger.
Next up is my typical lunch. On average it will include a strawberry yoghurt, a piece of fruit, sugar-snap peas, pretzels, and maybe a couple of Oreos. I will on occasion buy things like burgers, hotdogs, salads, and pasta for lunch, but the aforementioned list is what I normally eat at home or at work. This might not seem too unusual upon first glance, until you consider that I absolutely refuse to eat most sandwiches and salads. Yep, for some reason, I cannot tolerate vegetables and cold-cut meat between two pieces of wheat bread. I won’t even eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches anymore (I used to eat them for lunch at school, but now I try to avoid them as much as possible). Most pre-made salads are off for me as well, since they usually contain things I don’t like such as cherry tomatoes, celery, olives, cheese, and sea food (I’ll talk about sea food a bit more later). I will only eat salads that I make myself or ones made by my family, unless they add many of the items mentioned above. As a result, it can sometimes be a bit inconvenient for me to eat at someone else’s place for lunch, as there is usually nothing else available but sandwich stuff.
When it comes dinner, I normally eat what is offered to me to my parents or whoever is making dinner. Of course, if the meal contains something that I do not like, then I’ll try to avoid that food item and push it out the way. Only on very rare occasions will I refuse to eat the meal altogether, and eat some stuff that I like afterwards. If I am on my own for dinner, then I’ll usually purchase something from a nearby pizzeria or supermarket. Right now, I can’t really cook that many meals other than pasta and rice, and I mainly subsist on pre-made microwavable meals when I’m living on my own. If there are any leftovers of a meal that I enjoyed, then I’ll naturally have it for dinner.
That’s it for the three main meals, so I guess I should talk about snacks. For the most part, I don’t snack an awful lot throughout the day. Every now and then I’ll munch on the typical snack food such as peanuts, fruit, cookies, candy, and ice cream. However, there is at least one food that I really like to have as a snack which I doubt is common among most other people, and that is carrots. I’m not talking about baby carrots or sliced carrots that you’ll find at a party along with other vegetables and some dipping sauce. I’m talking FULL carrots, just without the long leafy stem at the end. I love those kinds of carrots sooo much, especially when they are first brought home and washed before put in the fridge. I consider them the absolute perfect snack for any time of the day. I guess you could say I’m also like Bugs Bunny in a way (maybe that’s where I originally got it from).
I would now like to list a couple of other foods that most other people seem to enjoy, but I either have to force down my throat or outright refuse to try. They include popovers, cornbread, olives, cream cheese, lettuce that isn’t chopped up in a salad, eggs, tomato slices, mushrooms, pineapples, melons, oatmeal, almost any kind of pie, lamb, tarts, and ham unless it’s dipped in mustard. Like I said earlier, sea food is a major turnoff for me, and I mean any type of sea food, even crab cakes, lobster, tuna, and sushi. I also can’t stand the taste of alcohol, so I’ll usually drink soda while everyone else is having beer, wine, or martinis.
I believe that is about it in terms of my overall eating patterns. I encourage readers who have Aspergers or any autism-related disorder to share some of their own “weird” eating habits in the comments below. In addition, I would like to say that there is absolutely no shame in having a food pattern that differs from that of most other people. I strongly believe you should feel free to eat whatever you feel like eating at whatever time you please (as long as it isn’t significantly harming your health, of course).