Week 2: Healthy Eating

Take a moment with your notebook to write down what is new and good with you this week?  A few bullet points will do, or go for gold and write a few pages! 

Feel good about any changes you have made, write them down and OWN them. You did it.  You made these changes, be they small or large, right now please take a moment to praise yourself.  You can do it. Say it out loud, not just in your head. "Well done, I can do this, my new lifestyle is off to a great start". 

Alternatively jump up and put your favourite song on and do the celebratory dance. We love it at Square One. It goes something like this...

 

As well as writing down all the good things, please write down all the not so good. Not so much as to dwell on all of the negative things that may or may not have happened but it is important to process them, feel the emotions that they deserve, give them the time and then move on.  

Right, now drop your shoulders, take a breath and enjoy your “you time”. Think about or even jot down the ups and the downs and what you have learned from each happening.  What you might change next time you made that decision or reacted in a certain way.  How you might try to react to someone or a situation that would make it kinder to yourself, or how you might respond to your boss or an email.

Once you have processed each 'happening' and how you will respond if it happens to you again, tick it off and take a deep breath. You are now refreshed and ready to take life on again. With love and enthusiasm for yourself and for those around you.

Are you sharing these positive changes in the forum? Have you shared them with your own support system? your personal friends? your colleagues? your partner? You don't need to keep any of these successes a secret! Be proud.

Fitting out

Remember - you are on the winning path here, you are on the road to health and longevity of life. No longer do you need to worry about "fitting in" the aim of the game here is to "FIT OUT".

How crazy does that sound?

Why would anyone want to Fit out?

Well...basically by fitting out it means you get to finally be yourself and enjoy your healthy world.  If your friends or colleagues are all eating pizza, drinking beer, chomping down on hot dogs and chocolate and you have decided that you don't want to, then you don't have to! Sure they might fire a few comments your way - but thats purely because they wish they were as strong as you. Be yourself. Do what works for your system, priorities and beliefs.

Just stop for a minute and ask yourself why you let their comments get to you. We all know what it is like. You go to a birthday party and you decline a piece of cake, everyone starts adding their 2 cents in about whether or not you should diet, why they are dieting, what they are doing, how you should do it...even if you haven't said anything! 

If you turn up to a BBQ with certain foods, a real food healthy salad, or some beautiful grass fed meat without marinading it in a sugary store bought sauce. Even if you decline an alcoholic drink, it often feels like we need an excuse or a reason as to why we don't want to eat or drink a certain way. Moral of the story is that you don't need to justify your decisions. Be who you want to be, be proud, FIT OUT and own it!

...be the person who brings the quinoa salad or the healthy plate. Create your glow. Exude health. You are health now, and you are a winner!  Before you know it, people will be loving your recipes and asking for them, they will start to come to you for information on how to cook a certain way or what might be the best option for the family to eat. It's such a great feeling when people start asking you about food and lifestyle - because you had the 'balls' to stand out and be yourself, now they can trust you and know you are into healthy living and they will want to know more. It's just like a ripple effect and you are starting it. Embrace this new role!

TASK 1:

Invite someone or an entire family over for dinner and serve them up some glorious greens.  Use one of your new cooking methods for vegetables and make sure you put them on the plate. Enjoy the company, cook with love - it will all come out in the meal. If you cook with love and happiness your meal will taste that way.  Remembering that you are allowed to 'fit out'. This is your house, your food, cook and eat the way you want to!  Be sure to take a photo of the food, or your guests, or your face when they leave and you feel success, and share it with the forum.

 I remember being absolutely petrified when I invited over the first guests for dinner to our new "adult house". I ended up making chicken sautéed in coconut milk with turmeric and chilli (I love chilli). I steamed some broccoli, zucchini and celery and drizzled some sesame sauce over the top and then finally I put some coconut oil in a pan, chopped up a Kumara (sweet potato) and a little water and made healthy camera chips. The meal was a hit...I was baffled...it was all so easy and enjoyable.  Here I was thinking I needed to be making a big pasta dish of glug, or a roast that took me hours, or a fancy desert, but I didn't! I just needed to make what I wanted to eat.   From then on in I was sold. Its so nice to have people over into your space for a meal,  to relax, and let them into your world... and another benefit - you are usually invited out to their place next time AND when you cook for people in your own house you know exactly what's going into the food so you can tailor it to your health and diet preferences.

We all know how good greens are for us. Read up on this Glorious greens file to confirm even more...and then go enjoy your greens! Anything Green!!

TASK 2:

Okay, so, now it’s really time to start thinking about when you are going to create new habits for cooking and food.

Write the following questions down in your book and really sit there and think about them properly for a moment.  

Questions for this week (and to be continued each week):

When are you going to buy the food?

When are you going to cook it?

How are you going to cook it?

This is just for this week, so these are not answers for the rest of your life! You may find out that the way you choose to shop this week doesn't work for you and next week you can do the same planning process and work out better ways each time. Every day is development...I am still trying to work out the best times to make it to the vegetable store, the butcher and the supermarket, oh and then there is finding time to make it to the local Farmers markets.

Okay, now write these plans down and lets follow them through this week.  

Discuss with your team in the group forum your plans. You may opt for an online organic vegetable delivery service - this may save you time and allow you to do more exercise to balance out your circle of life more.  You may decide to order in some organic meat, or take a trip to a local farm and buy some 'happy chicken' eggs (meaning they are not caged, and hopefully are fed organically, or as closely to organic as possible)

This may feel like you are taking a whole lot longer just to do the shopping, but trust me, what takes 15 minutes of time now, will save you hours of endless stress, worrying and extra trips back and forth from the grocers.  Go on...what have you got to loose? You will also save a bunch load of money I promise. Stick to the list and you will be on the road to an awesome week.

At the moment we are still forming the building blocks towards a sustainable, healthy lifestyle. I have not told you exactly what foods to buy as this is a lifestyle shift and you need to be eating what works for you. Over the next few weeks we will discuss many different food groups and this may help you know what exactly to be putting into your shopping list. Remember, however, you really can't go wrong if you remember to pick the food in its most natural state. 

So, if it fell off a tree, or came from the ground, or was alive, you are on your way to an awesome meal!  Don't stress about how much of it you are eating at this point, just eat the good food and your body will do the rest.

Another way to make sure you are buying the right foods at this point in time is to shop around the outside of the supermarket - sticking to the chilled and frozen sections; fruit, vegetables, poultry, dairy and fresh goods are in these sectors. See if you can do a whole shop without hitting the aisles! 

TASK 3:

It's also time this week to really analyse what you are eating and how it is making YOU feel.

Use your notebook or the notes section in your mobile phone or a separate document on your computer, anywhere that is always nearby, so that you can be real about what you are eating.  

Write down what you actually eat (there is no one to lie to here except yourself) and how you are feeling, before, during and after. This diary will offer some key information to you, and help you link your cravings to other parts of your meal planning. It's an eye opening exercise.

Click here to learn more about the food and mood diary

I can't stress enough how important it is for you to use your notebooks to keep this diary up to date. If you are having ongoing problems this food and mood diary will be very important for me to analyse. It will also provide you with many of the answers you are looking at. Keep going with it and we will reflect over time on it, so much will make sense. This is the beginning of feeding yourself the right way.

TASK 4:

Have you heard about primary food before? Take a guess and share with your group what you think it might be. I have heard some awesome suggestions!

Click here to find out what Primary food is

This week I would like you to start to think about primary food and what this term means to you.  Have it in the back of your mind everywhere you go. It's a wonderful concept to really utilise. Note down some primary foods that really make you tick and spend more time on them - rather than staring at the pantry.

What did you used to love to do as a child?

Could you spend some more time doing that now?

Did you love digging for worms? well maybe you should go and get your hands dirty in the garden, do some weeding (save on paying the neighbours kids to weed your garden!) or even better go and buy some new plants to nurture. Mow the lawns and enjoy some exercise at the same time.

Did you like to dance? Then get dancing!! You don't need to join a dance class, just turn the music up really loud and move, or put your headphones in and shake that booty. I LOVED dancing as a child and I have just joined an adult dance class. It is seriously so much fun. I can't remember the last time I sweated and laughed at the same time so much. Best move in a while for me!

Did you like to perform? Perhaps you could join a local acting group or toast masters group?

Did you like to play on the trampoline? Then go and join in with your children (or wait until they are at school and go nuts alone!)

If you loved athletics then why not get yourself involved in an age and stage appropriate sport? If you loved gymnastics why not trial out your local Yoga glass or Pilates group?

So many options! Not enough time! Share with the group what you have been doing to fill your primary foods cup.

All this talk about primary foods leads me into a pretty important next sector called

Dietary pyramids and plates:

We have all heard about the NZ food pyramid, and I am sure you can remember being told to eat "a small amount of that" and a "large amount of that"? Well everyone is different! How are we supposed to know how much or how little to put on our plate?!

 

Food pyramid

This leads me to learning to listen to your body. Have you every considered going to a restaurant and not opening the menu? Just stopping and thinking hmmm what would I like to eat today? and then asking the waiter/waitress if you could have that?

Might sound crazy, but next time you are at a restaraunt try it.  Order what you feel like, without opening the menu.

Now that you have an understanding of what primary food is (think; everything that feeds your soul that is off your plate) AND you have an idea of what is on your actual plate of food I would like you to start to think about how that plate could be filled more appropriately. 

Click here to see the Institute of Integrative Nutritions Lifestyle Plate

This is a great way to look at your life. We often say we have "too much on our plate" when we are not even referring to food, when we are referring to life in general.  So hold on to that feeling, and make sure you are taking some of the contributing stressors off your plate (non edible parts of life that sneak into your day), as well as making sure there is plenty of vegetables and protein on your literary food plate!

TASK 5

Finally this week I would like to discuss condiments. Yes, those little extra's that make or break a meal. The salt, pepper, cinnamon, turmeric and other spices, herbs, garnishes, oils etc.

Here is a list of condiments to start with

Your task now is to complete the list, and to use it as a shopping list. If you are able to start filling your pantry and fridge, or even herb garden with these condiments you are on the right track. There are so many benefits to all of these condiments.

Did you know that cinnamon lowers blood pressure? It helps with PCOS? It helps with inflammation anywhere in the body. Yes - thats right, the humble cinnamon is delicious and amazingly wonderful for your health.

Did you know Parsley is amazing for suffers of Rheumatoid arthritis, it promotes a healthy heart, its jam packed with Vitamin K, Vitamin C and Vitamin A and it contains a heap of iron (energy!) and folate.

Once you have done a little bit of your own research, discussed with your group some of your health problems (or emailed me) you will be able to tailor a list of condiments suitable to your own requirements. Lets chat about the lists and be sure to upload a photo of your completed list into the Facebook forum group. If you have no idea where to start then lets get chatting in the forum group.

Wahoo! Week 2 down!! High 5 yourself and keep up the awesome work team! 

A quick re-cap of this week:

This week I would like you to work on: 

  • Inviting another family, friend, neighbour over for dinner and enjoy cooking the meal
  • Establishing a plan for the food shopping. Sit down and write it out - answer the questions when, what and how?
  • Think about your primary foods, write down ones you enjoy, ones that need more time spent on or in them.
  • When serving up your plate make sure you have the IIN food plate in mind, and how much will your family benefit as well if you are serving up their meals
  • Head out for a meal and order what you feel like, don't even open the menu, just ask the waitress and I'm sure within reason you will be able to have the meal you want. It may cost a bit more, but it's your health! It's worth it.
  • Enjoy writing and purchasing a list of condiments suitable for your pantry. Yes...yes you will have that perfect pantry ready to create amazing meals and the click of your fingers.

I know it may all seem a bit daunting at this stage, new foods, new plans and cooking a healthy meal for other people!! AHHH!!...but try to relax, have fun with it, enjoy...what's really going to happen if it turns into a mess of a meal? You will have a laugh and try again another time. You will be filling your primary food plate with fun, socialising and enjoyment.

Life is for living, not fretting over the small stuff.

Love Jess x

This weeks files:

Condiment List

Dietary Icons and Plates

Glorious Greens

Primary Foods

The Food diary