A few years ago I realized that my health...was, well let`s just say `sub-par`to where it should be for my age group.
This one realization shifted my life so much, that I ended up completing a college level program in Nutrition.
I am now a Registered Holistic Nutritionist :)
Throughout my program, and afterward, I have seen literally handfuls of diet diaries...this led me to realize that some people have simply been fed some misinformation regarding their food choices.
Others are simply overwhelmed with TOO many choices in the grocery stores...
And still others are finding they`re way TOO busy to really do anything about any of it!
So here are TEN easy steps you can make this summer...and be on your way to a more nutrition-savvy YOU....
- Switch all of your margarine and any trans fats to healthier alternatives: this could include organic butter, extra virgin olive oil (low heat, or not cooked), extra virgin coconut oil (high heat), flax/hemp or other omega-3 oils (NOT for cooking, add afterward)
- Include at every meal something FRESH: veggies, fruits, sprouts, raw seeds...all living foods have enzymes included in them, vitamins, perhaps minerals, and all have antioxidants/phytonutrients, that scientists are just starting to unlock
- Increase your water intake: especially at these times, upon waking, and between meals....about 4 ozs. during a meal should not hinder the digestion process (maybe more if you're eating a larger meal), but I especially like to recommend a kick start in the morning to re-hydrate after a long night's rest
- Drink your green tea: look for the best brands available now at most supermarkets, and health stores...full of antioxidants and help kick start your metabolism *caution: none after 4pm if you're sensitive to caffeine regarding sleep, and none period if you're super sensitive to caffeine in general
- Increase your dark, leafy greens intake; organic dark leafy salads & spring mixes, spinach, & for the busy people out there: many stores are now selling superfood powders that contain various green mixes & blends (chlorella, spirulina, etc. * for the powders start off with lowest dose and work up to highest as they promote natural detoxification) Salads are an easy addition on the side to any meal, but especially lunch and dinner. Lots of phytonutrients and vitamins included in all of your greens
- Cut out sugar, or severely lessen all intake of it. Sugar is an immune depressor and does not support good nutritional health. If you are going to indulge, then try to do it alongside a protein or healthy fat...it will slow down the sugar release into your blood system!
- Cut out, or severely lessen your intake of all processed food. What is processed food? Basically anything in a package that we have tampered with (includes many additives, and unpronounceable ingredients). Buyer beware, and do your research
- Ensure adequate protein intake: protein helps to keep us satiated and promotes stable blood sugar levels. Eat a variety of protein sources, but be wary of soy (unless fermented; too much negative research on soy products is coming out; little amounts each week is probably okay)
- Switch up your diet! Try a new fruit, veggie, protein this week....did you know that most of the allergies we're hearing that are cropping up are made up of the top most eaten foods?! (corn, wheat, soy, nuts, etc.) Variety is the spice of life! Don't be afraid to find a new recipe and give it a go: one of my fav websites for cooking experimentation is www.allrecipes.com
- Lastly: speaking of spice...don't forget to include a variety of spices in your cooking. Spices (that haven't been tampered with additives, etc.) have many nutritional benefits as well. Scientists are uncovering a myriad of benefits of eating spices & herbs such as: curry, cinnamon, turmeric, garlic, parsley, etc. etc. Many companies are now responding with offering spices with little or no preservatives. Seek one out and have fun experimenting!
***Well, there you have it...what about you? Do you have a tip has helped you improve your diet? Write below in the comments :)
***NOTE: disclaimer, I am not a doctor, or medical professional. You must always check with your healthcare professional if you have concerns when changing your diet. If you are on certain medications, it is always prudent to research any potential interactions.
***and please don't forget to take a quick second to vote for my blog. With much thanks :)