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One of the most common things I’m told in regards to eating healthy is that it’s just overwhelming. Healthy choices can seem overwhelming for several reasons, but today I want to share with you why you don’t have to be overwhelmed.
Eating healthy is simple…. Don’t confuse that with easy, though =)
Too many choices can make things complicated. Should you buy organic or not? Are potatoes healthy? What about rice? Do you have to home cook all of your foods? These are some of the struggles I’ve heard and I want to address them below.
Before I can get into some simple strategies about eating healthy we have to properly define “healthy”. Wiki has a great write up on the evolution of health’s definition and I wanted to just share some of that with you here….
The definition of health has evolved over time. Early definitions of health focused on the theme of the body’s ability to function…
health was seen as a state of normal function that could be disrupted from time to time by disease.
Then, in 1948, the World Health Organization (WHO) proposed a definition that aimed higher: linking health to well-being, in terms of “physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease and infirmity”.
This brought in a new conception of health, not as a state, but in dynamic terms of resiliency, in other words, as “a resource for living“.
With health being defined as a resource of living rather than a specific state it’s easier to apply many of the strategies I’m going to share with you below.
Choosing healthy food doesn’t mean buying the most expensive item.
A good rule of thumb in regards to buying organic or grass fed is to prioritize your fattier animal proteins.
So, higher fat animal meats (steak, ground beef, salmon or pork) or higher fat dairy (whole milk, cheese, yogurts) go organic or grass fed when you’re able. This is because toxins are stored in the fat cells.
For lean meats like chicken breast, turkey breast, egg whites, pork tenderloin, etc there’s no need to buy grass fed and organic if you’re aiming to keep your grocery costs down.
Buy meats when they’re on sale and freeze them. This is a great way to keep costs down while still being able to stock up on high protein items!
What is a healthy food?
I touched on this above when I defined health, but to dig a bit deeper, what defines health is truly dependent on YOUR body.
For example, broccoli is typically referred to as a healthy food right? Well, for me, it’s not! It’s causes severe GI distress. I don’t care how healthy it might be labeled… it’s NOT what serves my body well.
The same might go for wheat, sugar or gasp…. GLUTEN!
Gluten free items aren’t “more healthy” than items with gluten in them. What matters is how YOUR body responds to the food you are eating. MOST people function best with whole foods and limited processing. (note: this doesn’t mean processed foods are off limits, of course #moderation )
So, as a baseline, we typically label whole foods as being “healthy” and the more processed a food becomes the less it has the ability to serve your body well.
The only way you’re going to know what serves your body best is by becoming more in tune with how you feel after meals. Make some observations, take notes and make small adjustments based on what you’re finding.
When your body is functioning most optimally with good sleep, regular digestion, normal bowel movements, stable moods, consistent energy and good cholesterol, lipid and blood sugar panels you can safely assume your diet is likely “pretty” healthy.
A person with an overall unhealthy diet will not have all of these characteristics.
Honestly, some of my “healthiest meals” are the quickest.
Using the information we’ve already discussed I figured it might be helpful to just provide some examples of quick easy meals.
Egg Muffins: https://theomnifit.com/egg-muffins/
These are a great snack or grab and go type meal.
15 min Scallop Stir Fry: https://theomnifit.com/15-minute-scallop-stir-fry/
I usually use frozen scallops from Trader Joe’s. They aren’t “cheap” but you could also use any meat in a stir fry. Eating scallops isn’t “healthier” than eating chicken, haha.
No Bake Energy Bites: https://theomnifit.com/no-bake-pb-oatmeal-energy-bites/
I’ve also added about 15 scoops of unflavored protein to this recipe so it’s a complete meal and they tasted great!! Without the protein, just have some protein source with them for your snack or meal. =)
White Chicken Chili: https://theomnifit.com/white-chicken-chili/
Another one of my favorites…. Especially when it’s getting chilly outside! Add various veggies to it to get some extra micronutrients as well. I typically use some frozen peppers and onions mix!
I hope that seeing “healthy” choices in this light helps you self-evaluate how you choose foods.
It’s SO MUCH easier to eat healthy than what society, magazines and TV make it out to be. Ultimately, it’s about being in tune with YOUR body and educating yourself on what you’re finding. This, just comes with time. Have fun trying some new SIMPLE items in the coming weeks!!
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