Creating a healthier lifestyle is a process. It can take many adjustments in your life to begin to feel like you are making healthier choices consistently. This is normal and expected. Health scares can push a person to make total changes over night. Though if you are not in this situation, a gradual shift is more normal.
Having said that… YOU CAN DO ANYTHING!
Going through your life and removing the unnatural aspects of your days is crucial in a healthy lifestyle. The main shift that needs to take place is one of awareness. Schooling in general does not teach awareness. You have to go out and find your truth, your self.
When it comes to self-care, awareness will help create an environment that is healthier for everyone that shares the space. This is crucial, especially for parents, due to the high level impact parents have on so many lives. You have to have faith in your self and know that you can do ANYTHING! Lifestyle overhauls are on the higher end of challenging… though they produce the highest quality of life results possible!
HEALTHIFY YOUR LIFE!
The kitchen has traditionally been the main room in any home. All major family functions are played out in the kitchen. Celebrations of all kids take place right where we cook. Generations are raised on the floor of a kitchen! In the mid 1900’s, convenience became KING! Middle class status was based on a families access to the easier aspects of the city; cars, TV’s, microwaves, canned milk, etc. Women were forced out of the kitchen in a movement that many feel was the liberation of the woman. Regardless of how we feel about it, women left the homes in droves and went to work. Kitchen time became looked at as a chore and the kitchen slowly lost its recognizable influence in US families. This has slowly crept over the Earth and now convenience foods are the norm and expected and even drive the current culture.
Here’s where processed foods really began to take a hold of the grocery stores. Processed foods are foods that are processed from their original state. So chips are potatoes, processed. What’s the process? Take whole potatoes, slice them thinly and fry them for a few minutes on each side, more or less. We can make chips at home and be our own food processor or we can go buy a bag at the store. Both are processed, the difference is at home we see what is used to make our chips. Industrial food processors use a whole host of additives to their processing procedures.
This is the main reason why we cannot live a healthy, whole life from industrially processed foods… foods that are bagged, canned, boxed etc…. We have NO clue what they are putting in it. The ingredient lists boast additives that only a chemical food scientist would understand! How can we think our body will be able to break it down and use it as nutrients for our bodies maintenance?
It’s not impossible because the body is so miraculous. Though what we do see are new degenerative diseases popping up, in younger and younger bodies, every year! Degenerative diseases are sicknesses of particular parts of our bodies. Heart disease is usually a degenerative disease, caused by years of neglect, low activity, excess weight and a processed foods diet. The additives that the industrial food system adds to their food stuff, are not created in ways our bodies can digest them well. We may break parts of them up, though these man-made chemicals tend to clog, store, weaken, etc our different body parts.
Its important to know that the main issue dietary issue all humans have, is eating food stuff… not actual food.
This may be radical to many, though we eat for nourishment first. Enjoyment is second, at best. We are made to process the nutrients of nature and with this deep shift we can really begin to innerstand why we have to make the deep shifts we need to make. Oreo’s just are not something your body knows what to do with. Oreo goes in and havoc is caused! Apple goes in and your body breaks it down, uses the nutrients, sugars, calories etc and then releases the leftovers through our digestive system. The body is perfect.
Our primary focus will always be eating a whole foods diet, all day, every day. Shooting for 80% of our diets to be whole foods and the other 20% looks like eating 2 whole meals a day of whole foods and eating 1 meal that has some processed foods in it ie pasta, store bought bread etc.
Our secondary focus will always be taking our current lifestyle and healthifying it!
Healthifying our lives means we find ways to easily and effectively add more healthy aspects to our current lifestyle. This way we can have an easier transition to awareness of what we are eating.
So, let’s look at an example menu:
1 Chocolate cake doughnuts
2 Veggie tacos
3 Bag of pretzels
4 Chewy granola bar
5 Baked drumstick
6 3 Jiffy cornbread muffins
7 Drumstick with BBQ sauce
8 Half bag of pretzels with peanut butter
And now lets HEALTHIFY it!
1 Starting the day, often want sugars. We should listen to our bodies. Most days are best began with some sort of sugar because most of our bodies us sugars as the main source of energy. (Some folks aka ketogenic, use fat as their primary energy source. There seem to be many health benefits to this lifestyle alignment)
Upon waking, our bodies begin craving energy. Oatmeal sweetened with a natural sweetener like honey, maple syrup or even coconut sugar, is a great sweet treat. Add fresh fruit and nuts for a balanced meal.
Whole fruit alone is a one of the best choices we can make. Bananas, apples, oranges, berries are all great in the morning. Eat them whole or in a smoothie or in your morning cereal.
Here’s a recipe for a morning breakfast cake we can make quickly.
Must try recipe here from Chocolate Covered Katie. A blog that I have followed for years and fully approve of!
2 Veggie tacos are awesome for a lunch option! Top as many veggies on as you possible can! The more colors the better!
3 Pretzels, although processed are a better option than many snacks. Though nuts/seeds would be a better option.
4 Granola bars are super simple to make at home. The boxed ones aren’t even as good as home made ones.
Check this simple recipe out!
Four-ingredient granola bars now are a great snack for the whole family! Make these on the weekend and bag them up for the week! You’ll be happy J
5 Chicken is fine, of course it is more or less from nature. Our meats need to be organic and from well cared from animals. If not we are taking in the energy of the animal plus anything it ate. Many food borne illnesses with animal meat come from the unsanitary living conditions of the animals. These animals produce sick meat that makes humans sick. So quality of meat is so important.
6 Jiffy cornbread, unfortunately, has no corn and no bread. These magical boxes of goodness (I was raised on Jiffy!) are almost all chemicals.
Try making your own cornbread, or just becoming aware that Jiffy is not jiffy for the body and it needs to be replaced. Sprouted bread or even some quick drop biscuits are a much better option. Have you made drop biscuits before? WHOA! So easy and so good! Check this recipe out!
7 Sauces are a place where many, many food additives are hidden. I make most of our sauces from scratch, and it is mind blowing to see how many more ingredients professional processors use! Mind blowing!
Making our own sauces or buying higher quality sauces is imperative! Walmart and all the big box stores are starting to carry more organic options. Ask the grocer where there natural food section is… and if they do not have one ask who can you ask about why?
Simple BBQ sauce
8 Pretzels, again are a great snack option. Whole fruits or veggies would also be a great finger snack to have ready to snack on. You can even try making your own ranch sauce and having carrots pre cut and ready to dip in your own ranch!! Making ranch is so exciting (if you like ranch) because it is one of those things you just assume you have to buy! You don’t!
Try this one out!
So how does this feel? I think we’ll do one day at a time and break down how we can healthify our life!
We can enjoy eating and be nourished with more awareness about what and why we eat.
Are you up for trying a new recipe?
Try this yummy stew out! Easy, cheap, filling and yummy!