We all know the basics with nutrition, right? Eat more fruits and veggies, watch the sugar and salt, balance your diet with all the colors of the rainbow, etc etc. But there is so much more to eating a truly healthy diet. Here are 4 simple things you can do to start taking your nutrition game to the next level.
Eat whatever you want! As long as you MAKE IT YOURSELF. This is one of the best pieces of advice for anyone trying to eat better. The large food ‘industry’ adds so many unnecessary ingredients into the products the manufacture. There are ingredients to preserve shelf life, ingredients to change color and appearance, even ingredients to stimulate our brains and our taste buds that actually make these foods addictive.
Fats are your Friends! Years ago there seemed to be a war on fats. They were responsible for obesity and heart disease, among other things. But the whole truth is that we NEED fats on our diet. Good fats, that is. Every cell in our body is coated with a fatty layer that allows nutrients to pass in and out of the cell. Our brains and nervous systems are made up of a lot of fatty tissue. Many of our hormones and endocrine glnds rely of fats for proper function. Also, consumption of healthy fats actually DECREASES the amount of bad fats in our body. So eat those avocados, use that coconut oil, eat those good locally farmed eggs. Your body will thank you.
Let’s talk about animal products. Most of our meat, dairy, eggs etc come from large scale farms that don’t always treat their animals the best. They are usually crammed into tight quarters in dirty environments. They are usualy given antibiotics due to the high levels of infections caused by these conditions. Often they are given hormones to make them grow larger, or affect the product in other ways. The high levels of stress these animals experience does go into the product, changing it in an undesireable way. The best thing we can do for ourselves, and for our environment, is to get as much of our animal products from local farms that treat their animals well. Happy animals make a better product.
Fermentation: Fermentation has been a part of every civilization since the beginning of time. I’m sure you’ve tried saurkraut, kimchi, or yogurt in your life. Historically it has been a method of preserving food, but it has many other benefits. Fermentation uses bacteria or yeast to start breaking down foods, but also to prevent bad bacteria and yeasts/molds from spoiling the food. This also increases the amount of certain vitamins and nutrients, like some B vitamins. Fermentation also breaks down something called phytic acid, which is an enzyme inhibitor found on grains, seeds, and legumes. By breaking this down the food becomes alive, and will grow if given the opportunity. It’s always better to eat food that is alive rather than dead.
So take these 4 tips and start implementing them now. You will feel SO much better!