Clean Eating – Healthy Living

Clean Eating – Healthy Living

A Clean Eating Lifestyle Keeps You Strong & Healthy!

A clean eating lifestyle is making healthy food choices and following a plan and foundation which are on the same wave length with creating a healthy well-balanced body.

It certainly isn’t just a new marketing buzz word, and fortunately, the clean eating lifestyle has been elevated in the media. Through functional medicine, alternative treatments, integrative medicine, nutritionists and fitness experts, we are learning that the whole body is connected, and WHAT YOU EAT MATTERS!

Your Body Needs Healthy Food For Energy!
It takes energy for our bodies to function properly just like it takes gas for your automobile to get you from point A to B.  Imagine how much blood flows through your veins each day… how many heartbeats you have every minute… how many times you blink your eyes every hour… what happens to your body when you are angry, and so much more.
Get in touch with your body… and feel how your emotions, your food and your thoughts affect your physical well-being.
Be determined to make healthier choices in the food you eat and start planning to eat healthy and delicious meals.  You don’t need to starve yourself… you just need to get motivated to eat clean healthy food, exercise regularly and toss in a big dose of gratitude to achieve a well-balanced, healthy mind and body.
The goal is to maintain a long-term healthy lifestyle that you can sustain with clean eating for a lifetime… not just about achieving your ideal weight.
Strong decisions always play an important role. Once you decide and commit yourself to staying healthy and making better choices, you can achieve it. The first step is to have a successful mindset about what you are planning.
When you become more mindful of your choices, you will gradually start making healthier ones. Stay focused on what you want to cultivate. You can achieve and maintain well-balanced food choices, and then you will begin to notice significant changes. Your desire for junk food decreases and your taste buds start craving healthy food.
As you begin to eat healthier, you will FEEL the difference in your body. This will become automatic for you… with no resistance… let me emphasize “no resistance”… just a new choice!

Five Unhealthy Eating Habits To Avoid

Eating unhealthy foods is a habit that not only exposes you to chronic diseases but can also depletes the hard work put into a good fitness program. Sadly, most people who engage in bad eating habits don’t realize how much of a negative effect it’s having on their fitness.

To help you make better food choices and get you on the right track to a leaner and healthier body, here are five bad eating habits that you should avoid.

Mindless Eating

One of the biggest secrets of healthy eating is to listen to your body. Learning to listen to your body helps you to only eat what’s necessary to satisfy your hunger and stop before you overindulge. Therefore, to become in-tune with your body’s needs, you need to drop the habit of mindless eating. If you’re not aware what you’re putting into your body, you’ll constantly overeat without even thinking about it.

To start eating mindfully, chew your food slowly and completely. Think about how you feel after each mouthful and stop eating as soon as you’re satisfied. This may seem difficult at first but the more you do it, the more connected you’ll become to your body’s hunger signals and the more natural it will feel.

Unhealthy Snacking

Most people don’t snack in the right way and indulge in processed snacks between their healthy meals. This sabotages their healthy eating efforts and makes achieving their goals very difficult.

Snacking is encouraged by nutrition experts, and it’s also a great way to boost your healthy eating habits. When you snack in the right way, you won’t feel hungry between meals and you’ll supply your body with a wide range of health boosting nutrients.  

So how do you snack in the right way? Simply choose foods that are fresh and natural. Some of the many healthy snacking options include fresh fruits and vegetables, Greek yogurt, nuts and seeds.

Artificially Sweetened Drinks

Artificially sweetened drinks are something that many people believe to be a healthy drink because it contains zero sugar and eliminates hundreds of calories while still allowing you to enjoy a sweet treat. However, they are actually loaded with artificial ingredients that damage your body in numerous ways and have been linked with an increased risk of heart disease, metabolic syndrome, strokes and dementia. Learn more about the health risks of artificially sweetened drinks.

Drinking water is your best option, and it is highly refreshing when you infuse your water with fresh fruits and herbs. You can also stay hydrated and satisfied with smoothies and herbal teas.

Eating Too Fast

If you’re eating too fast, you most likely are not chewing your food properly which can be harmful to your digestive system. When you chew your food, enzymes mix with your food to help with digestion. It takes about 30 minutes for hunger signals to respond to the foods you eat and send signals to your brain that you are satisfied.

If you eat too fast, you’re likely to eat more than your body requires before your hunger signals respond and you’re disrupting your digestive system. Slow down, be mindful, enjoy each mouthful and take your time when eating.

Not Getting Enough Sleep

Not getting enough sleep can have a negative impact in the areas of your brain that are responsible for logic and reasoning. This can set you up to make poor decisions when it comes to food.

Lack of sleep directly affects both your body and brain causing you to engage in unhealthy eating habits. Without enough sleep, your metabolism goes haywire and this will cause you to feel hungrier and crave unhealthy foods. This combination of a dulled brain and increased hunger cravings makes you much more likely to break your healthy eating habits.

By making sure you get a minimum of six hours quality sleep each night, you avoid these adverse effects and eating healthy becomes much easier.

The healthier you become, the easier it is to stay on track and be mindful of the choices you make. Remember, it’s a journey… not a destination! 

The Journey Starts Here…

The importance of good healthy eating habits cannot be stressed enough. It’s through eating quality foods that you get to enjoy numerous health benefits including mental sharpness, a strong and healthy heart, overall wellness and increased energy levels.

However, to successfully develop good healthy eating habits, you need to gradually change your existing eating habits and not impose strict dietary limitations that deprive you of the foods you love. Below you will find a starting point… a simple action plan in four steps… to gradually start changing your existing eating habits into healthier eating habits.

Eliminate Temptations

Many people have developed unhealthy eating habits simply because they’re within close range of junk food and other unhealthy foods at home… even when they are not hungry. Have you ever done this? If so, you’re not alone. 

Therefore, if you want to develop and stick to healthy eating habits, a good starting place would be clearing your pantry and refrigerator of any potentially tempting foods. Without these food items around, you’ll be able to make healthier choices because there won’t be any junk food to tempt you.

Take a Serious Look at Your Current Diet

Use your current diet as the platform for making future healthy changes. Simply identify which healthy eating habits you should maintain and which poor eating habits need to be dropped. Write the healthy eating habits you should maintain on one list and then write the poor eating habits you need to ditch on a separate list.

Focus on One Small Change to Your Diet Each Week

Trying to develop healthy eating habits overnight is unrealistic. If you do so, you’ll be setting yourself up for failure because sooner or later, you’ll regress back to your old eating habits.

Instead of trying to completely overhaul your diet, take it slowly by making one small and simple dietary change per week. Some examples of the weekly changes you could make include swapping diet soda for water, swapping chips for nuts or swapping your weekly pizza for a healthy, home cooked meal. Doing this will make the process of developing healthy eating habits more manageable and less stressful.

Stay Positive and Enjoy Your New Adventure to Wellness 

To create successful new healthy eating habits, you’ll need to be highly determined and 100% committed. One of the best ways you can sustain your commitment is by staying positive. Stop thinking about what you have given up and instead focus on the positive aspects of healthy eating and the successes you’ve managed so far. This will give you the determination to keep moving forward whenever you’re tempted to fall back to your former bad eating habits.

Summary

By integrating these simple but effective tips into your lifestyle, you’ll find it easy to transition into the routine of healthy eating.  Review all four tips right now, start taking action today and begin your healthy eating adventure.

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Growing and Sprouting Greens!

Growing and Sprouting Greens!

Growing and Sprouting Greens The Easy Way!

Growing your greens gives you the freshest and healthiest food.

For many years, I have been growing and sprouting greens. It was probably in 2003 when I started my first organic garden. My daughter requested this for her birthday, and I could not have been happier! We made raised beds (with some help), had organic soil delivered, nurtured seedlings and watched the miracles happen.

I will never forget the day when my daughter, mother of three young children, was standing on the deck overlooking the garden. She was filled with joy and cried… she commented that, until then, she never really understood how food was grown. It was one of those Kodak moments that you just never forget.

Those precious moments did not end there.

My grandchildren helped plant and grow seedlings, they nurtured the garden and gathered the harvest. They ate salads, and loved cucumbers which became their snack food. We would all gather together to make fermented vegetables… usually 12 to 16 quarts at a time. We had quality time working and laughing together.

When I remarried, my husband and I had a large organic garden for four years. It was fun, exciting, plentiful and a whole lot of work. In the beginning, we were growing everything you could imagine… but we did have to make some sacrifices along the way.

You can’t just hop in the car for a long weekend!

We had an automatic watering system and thought we could take off a few days… WRONG! Heavy rains moved in, and it looked like growth hormones had been mixed with the weeds and they quadrupled in size every hour! YES, the plants grew but the weeds devoured everything. I’ve never seen anything like it… and it was overwhelming, but it did get me back to growing and sprouting greens again!

This year, we made the decision to downsize our indoor and outdoor projects to be more manageable, and stick with growing and sprouting our greens, along with a few of our favorite herbs and veggies. In the garden, we still have fig and pear trees, as well as strawberries and blackberries; plus we’re growing collards, kale, chard, cucumbers, peppers, herbs and tomatoes.

Alfalfa Sprouts - These sprouts are growing at three different stages. If you look closely, you can see the sprouts in the jar on the right are starting to get little green leaves.

Indoors, I’m keeping a constant supply of fresh sprouts, and I’m growing our greens! I dabbled a couple of years ago with hydroponics and grew some beautiful kale and lettuce, but I wanted to simplify the process.

I discovered the Grow Box 2.0 shown below that is very similar to the one my husband made for me. It’s great for keeping salad greens growing through all seasons. Plus, you can “put it on hold” at any time if you want to take a vacation, and start back up when you’re ready. BUT, I can’t imagine you will stop for long. After all, nothing compares to growing and sprouting greens, especially when you know they are FRESH, CLEAN AND GREEN.

Food Rising Grow Box 2.0 - Grow clean heathy food with no electricity, no soil and no weeding. Developed by the Health Ranger.

If you have any desire to grow your greens on your terms, check this out and see if it’s a good fit for you.

It may sound strange, but my husband and I have greens and sprouts almost every morning along with our organic eggs or oatmeal, and for dinner. Just goes to show you that when you eat healthy, your taste buds change and you start craving clean food.

Until next time, go eat some greens!

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