1.27.20 New Recipe and Un-Dieting for Your Health

We all know how dieting works. Are you ready to 'un-diet'? Most diets restrict a food group (such as starches) or a macro-nutrient (such as fat). While there is a time and place for temporary, therapeutic diets, I think we tend to rely on the latest and greatest fad diet with unrealistic expectations. For the average person trying to become healthier, have more energy, or reach a more balanced weight, we need more than a diet. We need a lifestyle.

I have a few problems with diets that restrict a macro-nutrient or focus on mainly consuming one.

-our bodies rely on all three (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) for fuel. Ideally we burn all of these throughout our day. (Come to February's class on Balancing Macros/Metabolic Flexibility!)

-a restricted macro diet can make our micro-nutrients suffer. We need a wide variety of vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals.

-variety is the spice of life and without it our gut flora is susceptible to encouraging bad bacteria and crowding out the good (which is the express train for most health issues!)

So how do we create balanced, sustainable changes to take us to a lifestyle of healthy eating?

-Be realistic in making a commitment. We go out to eat, people have us over to dinner, they bake us things for our birthdays... Can you control 80% of what you eat? Maybe 50% is really good, made from the best ingredients, at home in your nurturing kitchen, while 30% is good choices made on the run, salad bars, clean pre-made, etc, and the last 20% is pizza, ice cream, and beer. What is going to work for you and your family? Aim for as much great food as possible and then don't beat yourself up when it doesn't happen!

-Clean out the pantry, fridge, and freezer. If in your logical, clean eating, whole foods perspective mind a food should be avoided, then GET RID OF IT! So that when you are in an un-logical, hangry state of mind it isn't available for consumption. (P.S. Upcoming classes on each of the macros and how to nourish your body beyond food cravings.)

-Think whole foods. How many ingredients are on the label? Doesn't even need a label? All the better! And remember that we can over process foods ourselves at home. Making ourselves an occasionally treat with nut flours is fun and creative! But don't drift to the place where everything is a healthy version of a processed food.

-Some straight across substitutions are reasonable, especially during a transition. For instance, gluten free bread instead of regular. But work towards being happy without the substitution and enjoying a whole food in its place. Savory oats or a sweet potato for instance.

-Shop 'Clean 15' and 'Dirty Dozen'. Talk to your farmers at the market, maybe they don't have the organic label, but it could be cleaner and safer than the 'organic' in the grocery store!

-Buy colors! Try new recipes/cuisines. Try new spices. Try different cuts of meats (hint: organ meats ;). Get a CSA box (or Imperfect Foods) and be surprised by what's in season!

I'd love to hear your ideas on making healthy eating a fun habit! Just reply to this email and I'll share them next time!

Kale Surprise

1 T coconut oil

2 small - medium carrots

2 stalks of celery

¼ cup garbanzo beans

4-5 leaves of kale

Salt and pepper

Sunflower or pumpkin seeds

¼ tsp Garlic and onion powder

Saute thinly sliced carrots and celery in coconut oil in a cast iron skillet. Add the cooked garbanzo beans and kale. Add a splash of water and cover while the kale wilts, 1-2 minutes. Remove lid and add spices/seasonings and seeds. Saute until heated through. Enjoy!

P.S. I eat directly out of my cast iron like a barbarian! It keeps the food hotter!