Lets face it—eating healthy is challenging on many levels. Aside from the higher price of organic and chemical-free foods, the inconvenience of shopping and preparing food makes it unappealing in our fast-paced culture. That said, we can tackle any challenge that we make a priority.
And, if you do not make healthy eating a priority, then you are practically guaranteed to suffer mild to major health issues (from weight gain to allergies to life-threatening disease).
So what exactly does a day of healthy eating look like? In two words, nutrient dense.
We are not counting calories or eliminating fat from our diet here folks, we are simply aiming for lots of nutrients, plenty of healthy fats, a variety of fruits and veggies, quality protein sources, and hydration. Honestly, counting calories and restricting fat intake will make you sick! (more on that in a future post)
Following is an example of a totally healthy menu, assuming you are not allergic to any of the items on the menu or have other restrictions from medications or otherwise. (Remember, your diet should be personalized to maximize YOUR health, there is no one-size-fits-all diet, so modify accordingly, and make sure all ingredients are local or organically grown from trusted sources.)
Pre-breakfast: Start your day with a glass of water with fresh lemon squeezed in it (hydrating and alkalizing), followed by a morning cup of unsweetened coffee or green tea (both are hydrating and green tea is highly anti-oxidizing). If you must sweeten your coffee or tea, use local honey or grade B maple syrup; both have healthful qualities. Feel free to add a Tbsp of extra virgin coconut oil to your coffee or tea! Also, be sure to use natural spring water or filtered water for drinking and cooking as municipal tap water contains chlorine, fluoride, and other undesirable particulates.
Breakfast: Smoothie: In a blender, add ¼ cup of pure fruit juice (i.e., tart cherry juice or pomegranate juice), ¼ cup water, ½ of a banana, a cup of loose greens (kale, arugula, beet greens, spinach, etc), 1 Tbsp chia or hemp seeds, 1 Tbsp almond butter, a handful of berries, ½ apple. Blend until smooth. Sometimes I add fresh ginger root (1 inch piece), cocao powder, turmeric, cinnamon, pinch of cayenne, or other health promoting herbs to amp up the health-promoting effects.
Snack: Morning snack: organic celery or apple slices with almond butter.
Lunch: Fresh dark green salad with a lean meat or fish and a variety of raw veggies. I like to add red bell pepper, purple cabbage, shaved beets, cucumbers, beans, nuts and seeds, including walnuts, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, etc. Easy dressing: fresh lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, sea salt/pepper to taste.
Afternoon snack: ½ avocado with sprinkle of extra virgin olive oil (cold expeller pressed) and a squeeze of lemon with a pinch of sea salt. Scoop it out of the shell with a spoon, deelish!!!!
Dinner: Baked marinated boneless chicken breast, sautéed mixed veggies (i.e., onion, shredded cabbage, and squash), raw veggie salad with vinaigrette (i.e., cucumber, red bell pepper, and carrots with vinegar, olive oil, sea salt, and pepper to taste).
Dessert: ¼ cup dairy-free coconut ice cream with raspberries and a squeeze of lime and a small piece of 85% cocoa dark chocolate bar.
Other Notes: Be sure to drink filtered water, natural spring water, or mineral water from a trusted source, and no sodas (neither sugary nor sugar-free). Keep fruit juices to a minimum (due to sugar content) unless you have them fresh squeezed with lots of nutrient dense greens and veggies juiced together with them. Also, this type of eating is very low in carbs and high in nutrition, a formula for optimal health from my personal experiences.
Regarding fats, use only healthy fats—i.e., extra virgin olive oil for cold foods and salad dressings, coconut oil, and butter from local grass-fed free range cows for sautéing and hot food applications. I give my eating plan, which has lots of other suggestions and guidelines, away for FREE. Click here to request one!
Eating this way takes some planning and advanced food prep, but it is well worth the effort! I promise, if you eat like this every day, your life will change for the better. You will lose weight easily, you won’t feel hungry, and you will look and feel healthier and more vibrant.
For the new year, I will be leading a healthy living initiative. Keep your eyes out for the upcoming formal announcement and please join us! Basically, I will create weekly eating plans and will suggest modifications for special needs (i.e., vegetarian, food allergies, etc). I will also provide some guidance on exercise and recommended physical activity. We will walk through this together and discuss challenges, successes, and strategies for overcoming the biggest hurdles we encounter.
Once again, I hope you found this post informative and helpful. Thanks for taking the time to read it!
Yours in health and well being,