It’s the New Year and so many thoughts of renewal and hope are swirling around in all of our minds. It’s a great time to set intentions, make visualizations, and think about what we really want for the next year.
It’s also the time of year when there are about a million offers and suggestions for cleanses, diets, detoxes, and so forth. I’ve been thinking about my take on the New Year as it relates to nutrition and the word I keep returning to is SIMPLICITY.
It feels like a tonic in response to the cacophony of offerings that all require some sort of way of eating that is not the way we plan to continue for the rest of the year. The issue I have with a ‘detox’ or a ‘cleanse’ is that aside from whether they are actually beneficial, which is a valid question for discussion, they are not something sustainable and therefore are temporary. They will be but a faint memory by the time 2016 rolls around. Additionally, the truth is that the body is great at detoxing every day if we just get out of its way and lighten the load; also, rapid detoxing when detox pathways are not clear can even be damaging. Cleanses with lots of juices spike blood sugar in ways that are also detrimental.
Wouldn’t it be exciting instead to find a new way of nourishing ourselves that is sustainable, satisfying, and delicious? To learn about what is great for our bodies year round and seek that out? To revel in the feeling that we are nourishing our bodies, minds, and spirits by enjoying wonderful nutritious food that supports us in all ways?
Back to that word- SIMPLICITY. There are some very simple guidelines that can see us through the year; think of it as a hierarchy, or an outline (like for those pesky term papers!). Do these simple things first, and then fill in greater detail as you have more time and energy to invest in the process.
1) EAT REAL FOOD This one is so beautiful and yet so simple. Real food, as close to the way it was found on the farm, or in the sea, not in a package or a box. The best food has no label. (Or just a very simple one)
2) DON’T EAT THINGS THAT STRESS OUT YOUR BODY This one can be a little more challenging, but some things that are hard on all of us include sugar, wheat, and trans-fats (shelf stable vegetable oils like Canola and Sunflower, fried foods, hydrogenated oils). Beyond these basics each person may have other things that cause stress and are damaging the gut. I can help you identify these things if you would like to go further. But, removing those three items mentioned is SIMPLE and will do a world of good!
3) DRINK LOTS OF GOOD WATER Good water means filtered water; tap water contains chlorine and fluoride that prevent proper hydration. Water is essential for every function in the body! It truly is the great detoxer. Drink a good glass when you get up in the morning to wake up your thirst response and then keep some handy for the rest of the day and let your thirst guide you.
4) EAT LOTS OF VEGETABLES Would you ever think that Paleo and Vegan would have something in common? Well this is one thing that everyone can agree on. There is no better boost to your diet than lots of fresh (and varied) preferably organic vegetables. Strive for 2/3 of your plate to be vegetables at EVERY meal.
That’s it really, for a great start. Simple right? (Remember I didn’t say easy!!) If you do these 4 simple things you are bound to be supporting good health for your body, with better energy, clearer thinking, and happy cells from head to toe.
If you would like to learn more about filling in the details of this outline as it pertains to you, or to have an ally in your quest to execute this list, I’d love to work with you. I offer a free consultation to everyone to spend some time discussing your story and exploring how I might help you reach your goals.
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Happy, Healthy New Year!!