Don’t call it a diet – it’s a way of life…
Disclaimer: Consult your doctor before changing your eating plan; but also use your good judgement. Be wary of the strong marketing skills of the FDA and food producing corporations.
Secondly, full disclosure: I am NOT perfect. I fall off the wagon, and I am a cheater! But, this is about adopting changes to your eating plan that will eventually become routine. Don’t think you have to be “perfect” because you will drive yourself crazy, or develop an obsessive compulsive attitude toward food. Live your life, but make each choice count.
No guilt, no shame.
Ok – now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk turkey…mmm turkey…
My eating plan is simple: “just eat real food”.
In 2012 I began researching and living a Paleo diet lifestyle, and began focusing on eating well to achieve better fitness and health. I also began to become a fan of juicing, and have incorporated juice into my daily life. For the first time in my life, I felt like I was in complete control of my body, and I was happy with what I looked and felt like. During the first part of this journey, I was so strict with eating Paleo that I wouldn’t even eat things like ketchup (and I love ketchup…) Yes, I was skinny and fit – but I was also miserable.
My eating became an obsession, and my life was not fun anymore. Slowly but surely, I started incorporating grains and dairy back into my diet and did not have an adverse reactions, so I decided these foods were okay to eat. (I was much happier once I allowed myself to eat ketchup again)
My research and love of being in the kitchen led me to learn many lost kitchen skills like fermenting sauerkraut, brewing kombucha tea and rising homemade dough for pizza.
Now, I do as much as I can in the kitchen. While I do not follow the Paleo diet anymore, I maintain a life of balance. Instead of eliminating all grains, I make sure that I’m eating whole natural grains like brown and white rice, and sprouted grain breads. I also limit my dairy to probiotic and protein rich full fat yogurt and some cheese. The most important lesson Paleo taught me was about meat, and now I make sure that I only buy organic or natural meats – local if possible. That might mean I only get to eat meat once or twice a week, but that is ok.
I don’t count calories – I count ingredients. Label reading is essential in the real food kitchen. I try to make everything myself, but for some go-to items, prepared foods just make more sense. Be sure to read your labels and make conscious choices. Cheap is not always good – good is not always cheap.
I’m still evolving and changing, and so are you! Hopefully this blog can give you some inspiration to eat more vegetables, fruits, and whole grains – and maybe even get you to stop eating processed, refined junk food.
Please share with your friends and family!