This is the most IMPORTANT part of everyone's diet plan (so don't skip)
What your plan looks like
So what we are going to do is eat for health, and change our view of food as fuel and medicine rather than something that harms us and makes us fat.
This is not intuitive eating - This is not a green light to eat whatever feels good. Otherwise I would be eating pizza and cinnamon rolls all day.
It is a plan to change how we view food and to start listening to how our own personal body reacts to what we are consuming. We need to start recognizing how eating a fast food burger might deplete our energy and makes us bloated and inflammed, and to avoid it for those reasons. Avoiding food because it's going to make us gain weight is never a good plan and it never lasts. We need to see that eating a few bites of a dessert can satiate that sugar craving and maybe we can decide that we don't have to finish it. We can start learning to substitute fruit when we have a sugar craving.
You may not be in tune with what is happening yet, but you will. Sometimes we feel so crappy all the time, that we don't realize that there is actually a different way to feel when eating food. The more natural foods become a part of your everyday diet, the worse unnatural foods will make you feel when you eat them. After cutting them out, they usually won't taste as good.
Your body is not my body. Your body is genetically predisposed to react to certain foods in a different way than mine is. Our bodies may need different nutrients from different foods. You may need more carbs or protein than I. By writing down how our body feels after eating food, we can figure out if that is something that we should keep eating, or if maybe we can find substitutions.
Avoid Stress foods
Stress foods are foods that our body has a hard time with. They create an inflammatory response, or cause our blood sugar to spike. It's also been shown that these foods can contribute to food sensitivities by creating holes in the lining of the intestines that food molecules can escape out of. If you are someone that experiences bloating, aches and pains, food sensitivies, or gluten and dairy intolerance, this could very well be your problem. This is know as Leaky Gut Syndrome, and if you want to learn more about that, here is a great resource. Leaky Gut Syndrome has been linked to certain conditions such as autoimmune diseases, migraines, autism, food sensitivities, skin conditions, brain fog and chronic fatigue.
On top if this, our stomachs act as our second brain. They are the site of different hormone creations, especially serotonin (our happy hormone). For those who are experiencing depression, the gut health is a great place to start! Inflammation and problems in the stomach can lead to inflammation in the rest of the body as well, which will work against all of your goals. No one can follow this to a "T" (and I'm not expecting you to), but when you understand what they do to your body, you may be more motivated to find a healthier choice. I follow a general rule of trying to avoid these things 6 days a week or 90% of the time, and then I take a cheat day. My cheat day isn't a day that I consume everything on this list, but if I want a piece of pizza and a cookie, I will.
Fast Food: Burgers/ Fries/ Anything fried
Excess of Sugar
High Fructose Corn Syrup
Many boxed foods
Vegetable and Seed oils
Processed Meat - Hot Dogs/ Sausage
White Bread/ Pastas, and Wheat Bread
Processed snack foods - most crackers, chips,
Foods cooked with MSG (found in some Asian Food and Soy Sauce)
Aspartame- sweetener in diet drinks
Sodas/ Energy Drinks
Gluten and Dairy for some
Eat nutrient dense food
If you want to get the most out of this program, then you should seek out food that is packed with vitamins and minerals ie. Food That Makes Your Hair Grow. This food will give your body the perfect formula to heal and function optimally. Your gut will be happy, you will be happy. Your body won't have to waste time trying to cut down inflammation from your diet.
Berries and Fruits
Algaes - Seeweed, Spirulina
Fermented Food - Kombucha and Kefir
Seeds - Flaxseed, Chia, and Hemp
Nuts - Walnuts, Almonds
Potatoes - White and Sweet
This week you going to start noticing how different food is making you feel after you eat. Here's how we are going to do this.
Record what you ate, and then if you felt energized, tired, bloated, irritable, etc 10-20 min later. If your goal is weight loss then go ahead and follow up with the next chapter.
This is where planning ahead is key. This will take more effort at the beginning, but when you plan out your day, plan an idea of what your meals will be the next day. Here are some things that will help.
1. Be ok with eating the same thing a couple of days in a row - Make your life easier.
2. Plan to hop over to the grocery store during lunch .
3. Plan to put some of last night's dinner in a tupperwear (make extra!).
4. Plan out what your dinners are going to be for the next week.
5. Eat the same thing on Tuesdays, or Wednesdays, for breakfast, or whenever.
In this program you are going to choose from 3 plans.
Nutrient Overloading - Improve health, undo metabolism overloads and nutrient deficiencies
It's important in any plan to have variations and modifications so that it can meet your specific needs.
Thank your food
Becoming Conscious of what we are eating is a huge part of this plan. We grow up with certain habits that become hard to break, and then we often go on auto-pilot and keep perpetuating them.
Maybe we always sit down at night to watch something to unwind - and maybe that always involves food.
Maybe when we are feeling stressed we head to the kitchen and grab the closest thing that's easy to eat (usually not good)
Maybe we always feel the need to eat dessert after a meal
Maybe one of the ways that we feel like we bond with our spouse/ kids is a certain fast food place.
One of the ways that we are going to help you overcome these habits is to thank your food. Food Thanking is a way to gain control of your emotional eating and mindless eating. On top of that, we can create a stress response in our stomach when we think we what are eating is bad that affects digestion and nutrient absorption (crazy, huh!). You can read more about that here.
Here's how you Thank you food.
1. Every time you got to eat anything (including snacking), you say a prayer or an expression of gratitude to Jesus, God, Nature, or the Universe. You express gratitude, and then you give a reason why.
"Thank you Lord for this bowl of oatmeal. I can tell that I need the carbs from this oatmeal for energy".
"Thank you universe for this salad. I know that the nutrients in these vegetables are going to nourish my body"
"Thank you God for this cheesecake. I know that this occasional treat is good for me to help me to not feel trapped by food, and that it won't derail my progress."
This will help you recognize times that you are eating and don't need it. If you can't offer a good reason why you should eat it, then don't eat it.
If the reason you came up with is, "I just want it", maybe you are thinking it will fulfill you emotionally. However, it is a good time to recognize that if you eat that food that's not great for you, then maybe you won't actually feel better afterwards, and it won't be fulfilling that need.
Maybe the reason was that you just want something crunchy to snack on. Look for a better food substitution that can fulfill that need. Here are some that I love.
You want something sweet - do this
Eat frozen blueberries or grapes
Eat greek yogurt with berries and a little honey
Pop some gum in
Eat a piece of fruit
You want something crunchy and salty
Pop homemade popcorn with coconut butter and sea salt
Eat salted nuts
Make your own chips
Veggie sticks with hummus
You want something fatty
Eat a piece of string cheese
Eat peanut butter or nut butter with an apple or celery (or by itself - this really works!)