This is a Guest Post from Jessica O’Toole Gzel.Global
We know we need to eat more vegetables and less sugar, but we’re really too busy getting things done and there’s just not enough time to cook and eat healthy, right?
Many of us are rushing through a packed schedule every day—working to a deadline, meetings, dropping off the kids, getting to the gym, picking up the kids—the list goes on and on.
Flipping the old saying to “You eat what you are,” changes everything. I first came across this concept in Dr. Junger’s book, “Clean, The Revolutionary Program to Restore the Body’s Natural Ability to Heal Itself.” He writes that if we’re unhealthy, sluggish, overweight and depressed we actually crave foods that slow us down even more. We want sugar-laden pastries in the morning and greasy takeaway at night. We rely on big servings of beige carbohydrates to fill us up as we eat dinner in front of the TV. We want more of what we are: heavy, stodgy, tired and weak.
What if changing our diets could actually increase our energy and make us more productive?
Dr. Junger writes that energetic, strong, active people crave healthy foods. They eat what they are. A healthy body wants food that’s satisfying but light, stimulating and colourful, fresh and vibrant. Instead of beige carbohydrates the plate is a rainbow of colours. Food is fuel for moving towards your goals, not stuffing you into a coma. Regular meals provide consistent energy for attacking the day. Erratic eating puts you on a frustrating rollercoaster of highs and lows.
So how do we change our diets and enjoy the benefits of having more energy, strength and stamina every day? How do we eat to be more productive when we’re stuck in a toxic state of craving foods that slow us down?
It’s quite simple, actually: just do it.
A few months ago, Ciara shared this quote by Aristotle,
“We are what we repeatedly do, excellence therefore is not an act but a habit.”
Here are 5 easy dietary habits to start doing immediately for more energy and productivity:
1. Make your breakfast a smoothie with protein and fruit. You’ll feel light and healthy with plenty of energy to get you to lunch.
2. Drink 8 glasses of water every day. Often times when we feel hungry we’re actually thirsty.
3. Fill half the plate with a variety of colourful vegetables at lunch and dinner. You won’t have any room for beige carbs that slow you down.
4. Eat more omega-3 fatty acids found in fish. We’re not getting enough of this powerful brain food that has a direct affect on our mental state and mood, especially depression. Eat fatty fish at least twice a week (salmon, mackerel, herring, sardines, black cod).
5. Exchange some of the meat you eat for protein rich legumes like lentils, chickpeas, cannellini, black beans, etc. These are nutritional powerhouses that supply long lasting energy and fibre, keeping you satisfied without weighing you down.
Now that you know what habits to start, here are 5 tips for sticking to them:
1. Stock the fridge on Sunday. If the healthy foods are already there, you’ll eat them. It’s got to be easier and more convenient than unhealthy options.
2. Get a good water bottle and always have it with you.
3. Keep it simple. Find a couple cooking techniques you like and vary the ingredients. Toss everything in a steamer or the soup pot. Roast it all together in the oven for a tray bake. Create a routine that works for you on each night of the week.
4. Find a good source for fresh fish and plan to make one trip a week. Make eating fish easy and convenient by always having a high quality canned option in the pantry.
5. Beans are delicious in soups, salads or as a side dish. Keep a variety of cans handy in the pantry and you’ve got a meal in minutes.
Want a total dietary rehaul to change your life and revive your energy?
Check out Jessica’s latest program: Fresh Start, a delicious detox for food lovers.