I get it. You are busy.
I completely understand that it seems hard to just ‘keep all the juggling balls in the air’, let alone take time to meditate, cook all whole food meals AND get the kids to actually eat it.
What about this idea? Baby steps. Making a few changes, bit by bit, a few things here and there that will improve your health, increase your self esteem, increase your energy and teach your kids to take care of themselves.
So here are a few ways to start:
- Chew – digestion begins in the mouth with chewing and the secretion of enzymes. Eating quickly increases the amount of air and the size of the food swallowed. This will lead to inadequate digestion and an increase in gas production.
- Eat regularly – Eat at least every 2-3 hours. Our bodies need regular fuel to maintain blood sugar levels and metabolism, but enough time to complete digestion before more food is eaten. Avoid skipping meals by having balanced snacks on hand for busy times. Hunger is a sign of low blood sugar and will lead to poor choices and overeating if ignored.
- Avoid overeating – Overeating occurs when we skip meals, eat too quickly or don’t satisfy our taste buds. Overeating is a major cause of obesity and stresses the liver and digestive tract. To reduce the risk of overeating, spread your meals evenly throughout the day and don’t leave the largest meal until the evening. Our digestive fire is at its peak around noon, a time that is most efficient at converting food into energy rather than storing it as fat.
- Eat with awareness – Awareness eating has been proven to cause a rise in metabolism. Ask yourself how hungry you are before and after each meal. Take 5 minutes to relax before a meal if you feel stressed. Prepare as many meals yourself as possible – touching, tasting and smelling food before you eat it will prepare the body for digestion, prevent overeating and improve your psychological relationship with food. A microwave meal is more likely to result in overeating compared to a home cooked meal. Stop eating when you are almost full, to gauge whether you need any more. It takes approximately 20 minutes for our brains to receive the signal of satisfaction during a meal.
- Achieve fluid balance – Avoid drinking excessively during a meal as this can reduce enzyme activity. One glass of fluid is adequate. Drink at least 2 litres (8 glasses) of liquid between meals each day. This can include herbal teas as well as diluted fruit juices.
- Prepare – Shop for fresh food regularly and keep your pantry stocked with good staples to make it easier to eat a healthy diet. Whenever you cook or prepare food, make double and freeze in individual containers for future meals. The best preparation is knowledge about healthy food options – a well informed choice will be the healthiest choice.
- Go 50% raw – Have half of your vegetables and fruit intake raw (e.g. salads) unless otherwise advised by your health care practitioner. Fruit and vegetables contain enzymes which aid digestion, so aim to eat some with every meal.
- Exercise – Aim for at least three or four times per week. Exercise works the diaphragm, which massages the intestines and thereby improves digestion. It also regulates appetite, blood sugar control and metabolism.
- 90% for the body 10% for the soul – ensure that the majority of food consumed is within the healthy range (90%) and allow the odd treat to satisfy your mind, soul and social life (10%).
- Eat positively – Good habits can easily be established with a little effort and a positive frame of mind. A balanced healthy diet doesn’t have to be boring, bland, time consuming or expensive. Take back control of your diet and health by making your own choices and stop allowing industry to dictate what you eat. And remember, food should be prepared, and eaten, with joy!