These days there is a lot of debate about what is really healthy for us.
A lot of the information available about healthy eating actually seems to contradict itself – like protein is good for you vs that it might give us a deadly disease!!!
So, how can we navigate the stormy waters of misinformation and keep our sanity at the same time?
I remember seeing a nutritionist in 2002 who seemed so shocked that I ate a small bar of chocolate every day that I was shocked!
Surely, a small treat every day was okay?? She recommended I try dark chocolate so I dutifully went to the nearest health shop and bought two large bars of 70% dark chocolate.
I went home…
…and cooked a proper meal of salmon and roasted vegetables and then sat down in front of the TV with my cup of peppermint tea and my dark chocolate. Before I knew it I had finished the whole bar and was looking for the second one. But I still didn’t get the sugar hit I was used to!!
Luckily, I realised that it was the sugar hit that I was addicted to and NOT the chocolate! Knowing I was addicted was a turning point for me.
I began by repeating this mantra 50 times a day to reprogram my mind – “I have the best diet of anyone I know”. I literally would count on my fingers as I did it. And it worked!
I cut out all refined sugar from my diet for a full year back in 2003-2004. I ate protein at every meal for a few years after that. I didn’t have a mars bar for about 6 years and when I finally tried one again I spat it out again because it was too sweet!!
BUT… like many people on a healthy buzz, I became tired of all the deprivation and started to add more treats into my diet as time went by within the guidelines below.
“One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well” Virginia Woolf
I’ve spent about 10 years working in the health and wellness industry – I worked in Health Shops for about five years and after getting my diploma in holistic nutrition and dietetics I worked in gyms for a few years…
But not everyone has the time or energy to study health to that level – and though some of what I know isn’t common knowledge, a lot of what I recommend here is common sense…!
- DO NOT rely on packaged foods. Almost every processed food has additives and hidden sugars of some kind.
- Eat real foods – eat some fresh vegetables and learn to cook fish or meat from raw… at least you will know what is in it! Check out Jamie Oliver’s recipes for tips.
- Eat breakfast. If you haven’t eaten early in the day then you are likely to crave junk food later. Please don’t use sugary cereals to start the day if you can help it!
- Don’t eat dessert until after your dinner. Avoid sweets unless you’ve eaten a proper healthy meat first.
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