Soooooo way back when, okay really not so long ago, when I first began my journey, my life was consumed by CALORIES. If it had 100 calories it was okay right? Oh no! Just because it is low in calories, DOES NOT mean it’s good for you. It took me way too long to learn this. I would eat a 100 calorie granola bar, because it was low in calories, and what I didn’t realize is it was really just a chocolate bar with some rolled oats! Not cool Quaker! Consuming only 500 calories at a meal of pizza isn’t the same as 500 calories of lean meat, beans, vegetables, fruits, yams, brown rice, or oats.
All calories are not created equal. Just because the box says it is low in calories and “healthy” doesn’t always mean that. Just because a muffin is 250 calories doesn’t make it a good choice for breakfast. Drinking diet pop because there is no calories doesn’t make it a better choice than no calorie water. It doesn’t change the fact that it is a chemical and sugar sh*t storm. Food companies do an EXCELLENT job or shoving crap in our faces and telling us it is healthy and what I have come to realize is that you have to take responsibility for yourself and what you put in your mouth. What does this mean? Reading labels is really important. NO not the nutritional label, the ingredients list. If there are more ingredients than you can bother to read, or ones you can’t pronounce, it probably isn’t a good choice. If it looks like it was made in a lab, there is a good chance that is was! Try to choose foods with limited ingredients (usually 5 or less). Take it back to the old school and buy things that you know are good for you, not ones that these food companies tell you are healthy.
Also I don’t like the word moderation. I don’t really believe in it. I don’t believe in white sugar, white grains, processed, sugar laden, corn syrup soaked foods in moderation. I know, I know. We all have cheat days, but those are RARE (not everyday occurrence’s). A lot of companies remove the fat from their products to save on CALORIES, and what do they replace that with? Sugar! So there we have it, we save on calories, but not nutrition.
Quality needs to trump quantity. Your body needs food for fuel not for pleasure. It’s sad I know :). We need to put foods in our body that give us energy, and fuel our daily activities. That make us feel good, and not in the 10 seconds of pure bliss when putting that chocolate cake in your mouth and then feeling like crap for the next couple of hours, but the kind that make us feel full of energy and healthy. If you feel foggy, groggy, lethargic, and unmotivated, there is something you can do. Change your eating habits. Instead of that 3 o’clock chocolate bar at the office, try a fruit cup or homemade granola bar. Also, trust what you know. You know chemicals, sugar, salt (the refined version) and processed foods are bad for you. You also know that vegetables, fruits, lean meats, healthy grains, nuts, seeds, beans, legumes and healthy fats are good for you.
Here is a list of foods that dawn my grocery cart or are in my cupboards, and can hopefully help you put together a list of your own!
Quinoa (white, red or black)
Beans & Legumes
Navy, kidney and or black beans
Nuts & Seeds
Peanut & almond butter
Sunflower and pumpkin seeds
Chopped pecans, walnuts and peanuts
Unrefined cold pressed coconut oil
Extra virgin olive oil
Granny smith apples
Raspberries, blueberries and blackberries
Frozen mangoes and berries
Lemons (great for water, especially if you don’t like plain water)
Frozen spinach and other vegetables
Plain Greek yogurt
Dad’s BBQ sauce
Mrs. Dash (all varieties)
Garlic Powder (not salt)
Stevia (look for a pure version)
Cacao nibs (only ingredient is cacao)
I have probably forgotten something, but these are mainly what we eat 🙂