photo by James Cridland
Do you want to be healthier? Are you wishing you had more energy and strength? Do you notice yourself losing some flexibility, stamina, and mental clarity? Would you like to live a nice long life that is healthy all the way into your later years? Well you can achieve this, and t’s never too late to start! Want to know what the solution is to attaining these goals?
Healthy eating! Of course it is also important to exercise every day, to maintain your strength & flexibility, and keep stress levels low. But, healthy eating is the most important thing you can do to affect your health. You can’t exercise away bad eating habits. You can be a long distance runner and still have high cholesterol that puts you at risk for a heart attack. So healthy eating should be a priority for everyone who wants a long healthy and enjoyable life. But what is the best way to eat for health and how do you make the change? First we’ll tackle what to eat and then how to successfully make the change.
(Please note that the topic of healthy eating is covered in more detail in my book, “The Secrets to a Healthy Life.” It has a 100% money back guarantee. If you’re ready to change your life for the better, this is a must-read. Read the description here. Buy the eBook here.)
What to Eat
Ok, before I lay this on you, here are a few things to remember:
1. This way of eating will
- make you live longer
- drastically reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes and other dread diseases
- give you so much energy you won’t need caffeine
- make extra pounds fall off
- boost your mood
- give you better sleep
- alleviate many nagging physical problems. (you name it and it will most likely help improve it)
2. You don’t have to change overnight. If you find that you can’t follow this way of eating all the way, just do the best you can in any given moment. The more you can stick to this way of eating, the better results you will see. It took me a year between hearing of the concept of eating a Vegan diet and when I started. I think my trigger was when I learned the amazing health benefits of Vegan eating and also the real health risks of eating lots of meat-based foods.
3. (This is a big one!) You don’t have to give up yumminess (taste)! Would life be worth living if all our food tasted like rice cakes? No way! Food can be healthy and tasty. Really!
4. When you eat this way, you won’t crave the bad stuff. Really! (2 caveats: make sure you don’t let yourself get too hungry and also set yourself up for success by having healthy choices ready ahead of time)
Alright, now you are ready for the big news. The healthiest way to eat is to follow a plant-based whole-foods diet. This is called a Vegan diet. Here is what you should eat, minimize eating, and avoid eating.
- As much as you want of all fruits and vegetables. Be sure to get lots of variety and be sure to eat lots of green vegetables every day, say 4-6 cups of uncooked greens. (of course, more greens is always OK) Greens give you lots of calcium and vitamins that are so good for you. A great way to get your greens is to drink them in a green smoothie every morning.
- Legumes (beans), nuts, and seeds.
- Whole grains such as whole wheat pasta or bread, brown rice, quinoa, oats, barley, buckwheat, popcorn, etc. Look for “100% Whole Grains.”
MINIMIZE Eating This:
- AVOID refined grain foods such as corn flakes, couscous, enriched macaroni or spaghetti, grits, pretzels, white bread (refined), and white rice.
- Added oils in cooking. Keep them to a minimum. Try using vegetable broth to saute your foods.
- Highly processed vegan foods containing “textured vegetable protein.”
DON”T Eat This:
- dairy (eggs, milk, yogurt, ice cream, cheese, mayonnaise)
I’ve done the research and very soon you’ll be able to read more about this in my new e-book which will be coming out soon. In the meantime, if you want to find out more facts about this way of eating check out these two books:
- The China Study by T. Colin Campbell, PhD and Thomas M. Campbell II
Detailed information on the largest nutritional study ever done and it’s implications for how humans should eat.
- Skinny Bitch by Rory Freedmand and Kim Barnouin
A concise volume with power packing facts on why a plant-based diet is best for your health, waistline, and even the world. The style is very spunky, but the message is clear and powerful.
- The Secrets to a Healthy Life by K. Stone (that’s me). This ebook outlines the 5 major categories of how you can become fabulously healthy, including healthy eating.
Changing Your Diet
Changing how you eat can be a challenge, and even more so if you live with other people who are not interested or open to changing how they eat. The key to making a successful change, no matter what your circumstances, is to go slowly but consistently.
The way to do this with eating is to eat at least one healthy meal per day and perhaps learn a new recipe every few days or once a week. If you can loosely plan your eating on a daily and weekly basis, this can also set you up for success. So your change pattern might look something like this.
- Start drinking green smoothies for breakfast.
- Eat the rest of your meals the same as usual, but start adding more vegetables and/or salad at each meal.
- Instead of a junk food snack try a banana, handful of walnuts, or an apple with 1 Tbsp peanut butter.
- You could also have the other half of your smoothie that you froze in the morning as an afternoon snack.
- Find a healthy recipe you want to try next week. Put it in your calendar when you’re going to cook it. Check out this website: VegWeband these books for yummy Vegan recipes:
- Continue to drink green smoothies for breakfast.
- Plan out your meals for the week.
- Plan your grocery shopping.
- Cook normally, but try 1 or 2 new recipes for either lunch or dinner.
Week 3 and Beyond
- Continue with smoothie breakfast and/or whole grains (toast, oatmeal, etc)
- Cook the recipe you learned last week and add one new one this week. Do this each week.
- Any time you need a snack, reach for a healthy choice. Have fruit, vegetables, yummy whole grain healthy crackers (with avacado is extra yummy and healthy) nuts, or a smoothie. Once you eat one of these, watch how you won’t crave bad stuff.
Basically, take it slow and build upon your success each day. If you make an unhealthy food choice in one moment, don’t sweat it. Just pick up with a healthy choice next time.
Changing Your Diet While Living with Others (Who Aren’t Changing)
This is a real challenge. I’ve been there. And I can tell you that you can have success either with or without others around you changing. In my family, I was surprised how they have jumped on board with my changes. It didn’t happen over night, but it happened sooner than I thought it ever would. Here are my tips:
1. Educate Don’t Push. Little by little, as you learn more about healthy eating, tell your family, spouse, children, and/or housemates about the amazing things you are learning about food. And I urge you to read a little bit every day about the power of food in creating health and preventing dread diseases.
2. Be Enthusiastic. Tell everyone about why you’re changing your diet. Invite them to ask you more if they are interested. Any time one of them joins you in a piece of fruit or a new recipe you cooked, give lots of praise.
3. Make Vegan a Fun Word. We use the word Vegan all the time in our household. At first it was a joke, in that everyone teased me about it, in a loving way. We always joke around about this or that being Vegan. And when we “cheat” we say, with tongue in cheek, “oh this is so Vegan!”
4. Kids: Have them cook with you. Everyone likes to eat food that they have cooked themself. With younger kids you can tie Vegan or “healthy eating” to whatever they are interested in. For example, “Superman always eats Vegan foods for power!” or “Cindarella always eats Vegan. That’s why she is so smart and beautiful.” Give lots of praise for eating healthy. Make it super cool to eat healthy. If this is far from the norm in your house right now, use the power of marketing with your kids. Repeat your message often, make it fun, and exciting. That’s how McDonald’s hooks kids in. You can do the same thing with healthy eating. Talk about it a lot and you’ll dilute the other unhealthy messages they’re getting.
5. Cooking. Add healthy elements to the dinner table a little bit at a time. Make lots of vegetables and less meat to start off with. Gradually you can introduce non-meat entrees of either tofu, seitan, or beans. Subscribe to this blog to make sure you get all the healthy and super yummy recipes I plan to post. Things like Tacos that are to-die-for, Potato Leek soup, Spicy Kale Soup, Barbeque Tofu, Cauliflower scampi, and more. You’ll benefit from my experimentation. I’ll only present recipes that are so delicious a meat eater will never know what they’re missing.
6. Cook It and They Will Eat It. When it comes to kids, sometimes you need to provide incentives. So you might allow 1 unhealthy favorite as long as they eat the new healthy item too. Use the carrot more than the stick though. Make eating healthy fun. None of the food I eat tastes bland or blah. I like tasty food. Don’t make separate meals for the kids. They should eat what you cook. If they don’t eat it all, no dessert. But if they do, then some chocolate soy ice cream might provide enough incentive. And by the way, soy ice cream tastes identical to regular ice cream, without all the sludge that comes with dairy.
7. Slow and Steady. Go slow and build over time. This is a nice long journey. Enjoy it as such. If your family doesn’t come around, don’t sweat it. Just do the best you can. Most likely they will eat healthier when they see your example.
Wishing you the best of luck on your path to become healthier every day!