Did you know? The foods you choose to consume on a regular basis affect whether or not you will develop diseases of affluence, such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease, later on in life. Rather than wait for the diagnosis (and the insurmountable medical bills), consider making a lifestyle change today.
By making “food your medicine,” like Hippocrates, the father of modern-day medicine, suggested over 2,000 years ago, fuel your cells with the nutrients they need. But first — review the five things you should know before you adopt a healthy diet.
1) The Healing Crisis is Real
Anyone who has ever done a cleanse or improved their diet from processed junk and unhealthy fast food knows that the healing crisis is very real. When you switch from consuming high-sugar, high-fat processed foods (typically filled with preservatives and food coloring) to indulging in real, whole foods, your body will begin to purge waste. Flu-like symptoms, headaches, chills, aches and pains, irritability, mental fog, and emotional detox experiences are all common. Fortunately, the symptoms don’t typically last past day 3-7. You might agree that the outcome of feeling more level-headed, having sustained energy levels, and noticing a reduction of symptoms is a fair trade-off.
2) Deprivation Vs Abundance Mentality
Most people have an unhealthy relationship with food because they were taught at a young age that bad food is tasty and that unhealthy food tastes like cardboard. This false belief promotes a mentality of deprivation, versus abundance. It is for this reason so many people start a “diet” (versus the recommended lifestyle change) on Monday and by Tuesday afternoon, are binging at their favorite restaurant.
News flash: Your favorite foods can be made healthy (or healthier) with whole, unprocessed ingredients. Make your own at home or visit a health-conscious restaurant in your city. Get free plant-based recipes here.
3) You Don’t Have to Go Cold Turkey
You may feel pressured to “go vegan” overnight or to cut out all allergens from your diet immediately. As an RHN, I would urge you not to do this. Statistically, you are more likely to stick with a healthy lifestyle long-term if you make little changes on a regular basis, versus stress your physical body and mentality with a huge lifestyle overhaul.
4) No One is Judging You
Change can be hard. So, if you feel pressured to stick to your new dietary changes 100%, that’s completely normal. But for your sake, please be aware that no one is judging you. In fact, it’s quite healthy to follow the 80/20 rule: 80 percent healthy eating, 20 percent allowed indulgences. This is recommended to prevent orthorexia or the obsession with eating perfectly.
News Flash: No one is perfect. And, it really is just food.
5) It’s Important to Have Fun
One of the best parts about adopting a healthy eating regime is that you get acquainted with so many more foods! From Brussel sprouts to dragonfruit and from papaya to sweet potatoes, there are so many recipes that can be made with simple, unprocessed foods. Perhaps you will become infatuated with the process of cooking your own food, for it is an art through which love can be passed around.
If you would like to get started eating healthier and forming a grounded relationship with food, visit Bloom for Life. The Bloom for Life cookbook is filled with 80+ plant-based recipes, a getting started guide, and a 2-week menu plan to help you succeed long-term.
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IMAGE CREDIT: dolgachov