Jul 9th, 2008 by Jennifer Lynn
One of my goals this year has been to gradually move away from heavily processed fast food and toward more quality nutrition. This was certainly not easy since I’m usually pretty helpless in the kitchen – just ask my boyfriend who watched in horror as I nearly took my finger out of commission while trying to crack open a dinner roll.
But by sprinkling in a small dose of determination, I’ve finally established better eating habits that are actually quite simple. We’ll just ignore the scars for a moment …
Recreation of the body through food
How many times have we heard that old adage, you are what you eat? But it’s actually true, probably more than we realize!
The body is a miraculous machine and every moment each tiny cell is hard at work rebuilding and regenerating itself, and throughout a period of time all our skin cells, organ cells and brain cells will have degenerated and be completely replenished. The you sitting here now reading this will be recreated to a completely ‘new’ you in a few months from now! What’s so important during this recreation process is how our bodies use the food we ingest as raw materials and building blocks for destroying old cells and constructing healthy new ones.
So what we eat really does literally affect who we are, right down to the cellular level!
Growing your own garden
As I mentioned in Beauty On A Budget, one of the best decisions I’ve made this year, especially financially, is growing my own vegetable garden. Not only are homegrown veggies packed with nutrients and much cheaper than buying from the supermarket, they are ridiculously convenient when it comes to coping with a hectic schedule.
When I rush home from work in the evenings like a ravenous lunatic, I can have a fresh salad brimming with romaine, tomatoes, broccoli, celery, cucumbers and sweet peppers plucked straight from the backyard and plopped onto my plate; the small beginnings of a fiesty feast ready in minutes!
(I’m actually munching on a salad as I write this.)
Always plan the grocery shopping list
I can try to convince myself I’d like to make an effort to eat better, but let’s face reality here. If I arrive home from work exhausted and the cupboard or fridge is nearly empty or piled with crap, I’m going to end up whipping up whatever happens to be lying around in there.
Without being stocked with the proper ingredients by planning out my shopping strategy beforehand, I’m all ready setting myself up for failure. This is why it’s important, especially during a transitional phase, to always plan a grocery list and have the items readily available when you need them.
My grocery list usually looks something like this;
green tea, multivitamins, Ester C 1,000 Vitamins, Apple Cider Vinegar with Mother, red wine, organic snacking chips, jelly beans, dark chocolate, Jägermeister .. (oops, don’t ask ; )
wild grain or brown rice, whole wheat pasta, oatmeal, multigrain or whole wheat bread, baked potatoes, beans, corn, fat-free yoghurt, three varieties of fruit (strawberries, blueberries, apples, bananas, pomegranates, kiwi, oranges, etc)
low-fat cottage cheese, chicken breast, skinless turkey breast, eggs for egg whites, lean ground beef, seafood (salmon, tuna in water, haddock, orange roughy, shrimp, etc)
basically anything scooped from the veggie garden
Creating simple nutritious meals
To motivate myself further, I keep a list of my favorite foods tacked to the fridge in their proper categories for when I’m hungry and feeling irritatingly indecisive. I simply choose an appropriate portion of carbs, proteins and veggies from each column and combine them together to create a simple yet nutritiously complete meal.
In the morning I may have a bowl of strawberries with some cottage cheese and a few slices of sweet pepper, then a tuna sandwich on whole wheat bread for lunch. For the evening, I may choose steamed brown rice and chicken with a garden salad, paired with a glass of red wine and some dark chocolate for dessert. I always carry water or green tea with me in a mug to sip on throughout the day while at work or running errands.
- Stock up on staple foods while on sale. If you can keep them from perishing, go ahead and stock up on your favorite foods if you find them at a decent price.
- Instead of eating three large meals, consider eating five or six smaller meals spread throughout the day. This helps natural metabolism and can also prevent accidental overeating.
- Eat just enough to satiate hunger, but not until too full. Eating just enough will help you feel relaxed and alert but who can stand that bloating achy feeling after gorging yourself completely? There’s a reason your body is sending that horrible nauseous feeling to your tummy, it’s simply not healthy. Next time you’re dining out, observe the expressions of people coming in compared to the sluggish ones leaving, who have managed to stuff themselves to the gills!
- Reconnect with the simple joy of eating. Take time to slowly chew your food and savour each delicious flavor and texture. It’s easy to rush through a meal and forget to really enjoy the pleasure of this small blessing - make an effort to actually taste your food.
- If you’re trying to eat healthier, always keep one free day to eat whatever you desire. Make a promise to yourself that one day out of the week, all rules go out the window and anything goes. Indulge in that yummy double fudge peanut butter cup ice cream or that Big Mac with fries, guilt free. The key to anything is moderation and you deserve some play time. So for one day, let loose and have fun!
Baby Steps Are Key~†~ Nourish your body properly and watch the miraculous transformation from the inside out