Being healthy is not the easiest thing because it takes some playing around with eating different foods to know what makes you feel best and keep your body happy. I am often asked what someone should eat to reduce inflammation, have higher energy, and lose weight. It’s important to understand that everyone’s body reacts differently to certain foods depending on what kind of exercise or work they may do, lifestyle choices, and so much more. Here are some tips that will help you start your journey to a healthier you:
Try An Elimination Diet
For 2 weeks, cut out any food containing gluten, dairy, nuts, seafood, and eggs after two weeks, see if you are feeling healthier, and start adding back in these foods one week at a time. I did this for myself when I felt really sick from gluten and discovered how better my life was without gluten. This was lucky that I tried an elimination diet because I felt sick every day and couldn’t make it throughout the day without a nap.
Give Up Sugar
Processed sugar is nonessential in our bodies. But, unfortunately, it has become an epidemic and is in most processed foods like foods that are easy to pick up on the go and eat. To help reduce your sugar use, try using less of the sweet stuff and play around with different sweeteners like honey, maple syrup, or dates (all of which have different benefits along with being sweet). Or, if you are planning on giving up sugar, one way to reduce the pains of giving it up cold turkey is to eat fruit like a banana, pineapple, apple, or even watermelon. Also, to reduce sugar cravings, eat pumpkin, butternut squash, or sweet potatoes to get a sweet fix.
Eat Whole Foods
Start to enjoy foods from your local market that are not processed and grown by a local farmer! I joined a CSA where I pick up a share of vegetables grown right there are on the farm. It is so much better to eat whole foods because you know that there’s nothing else in broccoli other than broccoli, but when you order a muffin, there is so much more in there other than egg, flour, yeast, and water.
Learn How to Cook
Knowing your food includes knowing how to prepare your food. Not only do you know what’s in your food, but you also start to understand what makes good flavor by playing with different herbs, spices, cooking techniques, and tastes. You will also find that it’s a time to bond with your family in the kitchen and that it can be calming and a form of self-care (I usually look forward to cooking in my kitchen daily). Also, I do virtual cooking classes! Sign up for my newsletter for more information.
Make Time for Food
Our busy schedules get in the way when it comes to how we eat. We often like to grab and go, which isn’t necessarily always the healthy choice. It’s so easy to grab food from McDonald’s, snacks from the gas station, and doughnuts from Dunkin’. Still, when we make more time by waking up earlier to eat breakfast or making our lunch before we go to bed, we often eat much better for ourselves, which will naturally give us more energy throughout the day, instead of crashing from sugar highly processed foods.
Most Importantly, Have Fun with Food
Learn how to enjoy good food and be proud of what you create. It’s up to you how you view eating, but I enjoy it, and it’s not just a necessity to me. It’s an integrated part of my life. I love going to the farm and picking out my vegetables in the u-pick fields, I also love sharing my food and recipes with others, I also have to eat to sustain my energy, I play with my food by playing with taste and flavors, and ultimately I find that preparing my food is a part of my day that I look forward to because it’s not a chore, it’s something that I like to do.
I hope this post helps you understand that your relationship and understanding with food will help you eat better naturally and without dieting. Your relationship with food depends on the quality of what you eat and how it makes you feel. Also, if you focus on what you eat and how it makes you feel, then you will start to gravitate towards the foods that give you life and energy, which will put you in a better mood, aid you in losing weight, and make you feel more confident of getting out and tackle the world as it is.