On Healthy Eating (and why, contrary to this photo, healthy eating doesn’t just mean green kombucha)
My sisters inspired me to start an advice series on my site. I’m starting with advice on healthy eating because I always get questions about what to eat, where to buy food, how to cook food, all revolving around: how to be healthy!
Full disclosure: I am not a nutritionist nor do I consider myself an expert in the field. I am simply someone who enjoys nourishing my body with whole foods and delicious eats. Generally, I stick to lots of fresh fruits and veggies, protein (fish, eggs, beans, tofu!), and plenty of healthy fats (avo, nuts, seeds, hummus, coconut butter, the list goes on!). Recently, I haven’t been having very much meat and I don’t eat dairy or very much sugar, refined or otherwise.
My style of eating may seem a bit extreme to some, but it’s what works for me and what I enjoy. If I have to cook for an extra 20 minutes in the morning to make a nutritious meal to fuel my day, so be it. I’m not one to grab and energy bar and go. (Although if that’s you, take an Rx Bar!)
“Healthy eating” is a lifestyle, so it could never be completely dissected in one post. Below I have pinpointed five topics to just barely touch the surface. Please post any questions you have in the comments or email me and I will cover them next time!
Time. It takes time to make a nutritious meal. Because you’re not grabbing something from the freezer and popping it into the microwave, you must plan and prep! I like to meal prep on the weekends and keep healthy things on hand to whip up a complete meal in less than 15 minutes: an egg or beans, lots of veggies, and avocado or hummus (or both!). Also prep sauces such as a tahini lemon sauce or balsamic vinaigrette to tie together all of the ingredients. For lunch, I like to just make a salad for the next day in a to-go container while I make my dinner so I can just grab it on my way out the door. Bottom line: prepping for 2-3 hours on the weekends saves you hours during the week and ensures a delicious, nutritious weekday meal.
Staying Full We all have those days when absolutely nothing will satisfy us. For the most part, I try to focus on eating plenty of healthy fats with each meal because that’s what really keeps me full. For example, usually the simplest lunch of roasted tofu, celery, carrots, and hummus, will keep me full until dinner just because of the fat from the hummus. If you have trouble with staying full/ satiated between meals, do NOT starve yourself. Right when you get noticeably hungry is the most important time to have a quick snack such as a handful of almonds, a hardboiled egg, or an apple with almond butter. Bottom line: if you’re hungry, have a snack. You’ll then typically eat less at your next meal and feel generally more content and energized.
Feeling Energized I eat the way I do because of how it makes me feel. I love sleeping well every night and waking up feeling energized and ready for the day. If I have dairy, caffeine, a lot of sugar, red meat, or a lot of grains/ gluten, I simply don’t feel the same. Feeling energized for me comes from eating whole, unprocessed foods and staying away from the previously mentioned trouble foods for me. Bottom line: this is not to say everyone should do this, but if you’re looking for somewhere to start, this is a good place.
A Great Dairy-Free, Sugar Free Smoothie
Effects on the Skin I’m sure everyone has heard this just about a hundred times, but I find that dairy and sugar are the main culprits of angry skin. I have found that by cutting them both out, my skin is happy and healthy. It appears more even and I have fewer breakouts. Bottom line: I would encourage everyone to try cutting the two out for about a month or two and just see what happens… you might just discover the key to skin health!
Apple + Almond Butter + Dark Chocolate Goji Berries
Choosing a Healthy Snack There are so many options for healthy snacks, but my all-time favorite is an apple and almond butter. A slightly outdated list of mine can be found here. Bottom line: generally, try to choose something with protein, fat, minimal sugar, and good fiber to keep you full.