When one of my daughters was diagnosed with multiple food allergies many years ago, our family became well acquainted with the enormous place food holds. Food rules. It dictates a lot. Even our social lives can be altered as most celebrations are centered around food.
After the news, our lives took a major new focus. There were many extra precautions, extra preparations, so much to learn, many to educate and so many worries! And, at the time, we may not have known it, but it was the spark plug to a more aware path. Although the 13 foods she was allergic to and not allowed to eat were ingredients in basically all the other foods on the store shelves, leaving very few easy choices, what seemed like a crisis turned into a catalyst.
It was a time of condensed learning. In fact, it was learning on speed dial because we had no other choice than to scrutinize every food label, teach ourselves to administer needles and teach many others to as well! But, one huge advantage of having to focus so intently on food is that we became better schooled and certainly more cognizant of the effects food has on our bodies – the good and the not so good. Thus, food rules, Yes, it does. It has quite the impact. Come find some simplified rules for healthy eating that resulted from our experience examining food so closely that may help you feel and look your best, too!
10 SIMPLIFIED HEALTHY EATING RULES I LIVE BY
The food we consume is one element of leading a healthy lifestyle. The information on those food choices can overwhelm, though, does it not? What diets to follow, what foods to stay away from, which ones to include and how to best prepare it. So, for me, I like to keep it simple and pared down. I have a few parameters I like to stay within most of the time when it comes to food choices, menu planning and what I keep in our kitchen for the family to eat. I thought these food guidelines may help you and your family, too:
1. Eat lots of plants and seeds.
The studies say the same thing – eat a plant-based diet and the benefits are numerous: improved blood pressure decreased the risk of heart disease, lowered cholesterol, better weight control, lower cancer rates, better moods, nicer skin, slower aging, etc. Yes, I want all that! How about you?
Don’t miss this: I have a great anti-aging plan to keep you looking, feeling and acting vibrant!
2. Choose nutrient-dense plants that have lots of shades of green and other bright colors and consume a variety of them.
The green in a plant usually indicates chlorophyll – a life sustainer. The many other colors present in fruits and vegetables indicate the different antioxidant phytochemicals they contain. Many of these chemicals help protect us against various diseases, but each in a different way. So, a variety is key. Each time I shop for vegetables and fruits, I make sure to mix it up from the last time I shopped to ensure a variety is eaten.
Don’t miss this: Here are some healthy and wonderful green salads to prepare easily at your house tonight!
3. Avoid foods that have sugar listed as the first three ingredients.
I steer away from foods in boxes and cans most of the time, but if I do consume them, if sugar or a form of it is listed early on, then it probably contains a lot of sugar and too much of it.
4. Do not consume any artificial sweeteners.
I just stay far, far away from the fake stuff. More chemicals. Besides, they give me a headache. That can’t be good.
Don’t miss this: Chewing gum is loaded with chemicals and artificial sweeteners. Find other simple alternatives to keep your breath its freshest.
5. Keep it whole.
Half, or more than half actually, of the preservatives in some canned and boxed foods I have no idea how to pronounce or can keep track of the studies on them (as the information on them always seems to change). Thus, I just stay away from them generally speaking. Food closest to its most natural state is best. Our bodies then know what to do with it. I feel a whole (note the pun!) lot better when I eat this way, too!
6. Eat when hungry and stop when full.
Gluttony, It is one of the seven sins, after all.
Don’t miss this: Here is how thin people stay that way.
7. Enjoy a treat, but make it occasional.
When you decide to indulge, go ahead and enjoy every last bite of it. No guilt, what. so. ever! But keep it to every now and then.
Don’t miss this: Here are loads of healthy treats to satisfy that hankering for something kinda naughty!
8. Do not eat out too much.
Love to cook; hate the dishes. But if you eat out a lot, you really can’t account for everything that is going in your mouth. If you prepare it, you know what is really there and what went in to make it.
Don’t miss this: I have lots and lots of easy, healthy, yummy dinner ideas covered for you right here.
9. Go organic.
Some foods have lower levels of pesticide than others, and it is not always possible to find organic foods or afford it. Further, when eating out, it is really difficult. But, when you can, choose it.
10. Do not preach.
By all means, provide a good example to others and share information, if interest is there. But, if you go too academic on others about food, your wanting to help them has been negated. You could create a negative impression when you really want to encourage them to eat healthier. Be gentle, everyone!
SHOP TOP-RATED HEALTHY COOKING ITEMS
Check out some of my favorites kitchen items below that I use or are on my wish list:
FOR EVEN MORE ON THE TOPIC
- Set up your kitchen for healthy eating with this strategy to do it once and forget about it.
- Fat is actually important in our diet to help absorb all those nutrients. Here are some of the healthier cooking oils to keep in your kitchen.
So, tell me, is my way, your way? What are your guidelines when it comes to food? I’d love to know!