Eating Unprocessed Whole Foods
Eating unprocessed whole foods will help you to be healthy and reach your weight loss goals. Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed with the idea of switching from processed foods to unprocessed whole foods. Take baby steps and strive to make better choices each day. Be patient as you slowly learn and educate yourself on how to make tastier, healthier meals. There is more time and energy involved in preparation, but once you get into the habit you will find its well worth it to make the healthy switch. Personally, I don’t think there is a more valuable way to spend my time taking care of myself. A huge part of eating clean and key to my weight loss success has been to keep healthy food in our house at all times. I make it a priority to shop every week for whole food fresh produce, freezer and pantry staples so I will always have them on hand. It enables me to make healthy choices and control what I put into my body. For instance, I am prepared to start my day with a healthy green smoothie in my Vitamix so I have energy and vitality all day, not to mention lots of nutrition and fiber giving me healthy blood sugar levels.
Most importantly, I feel the key for me has been to set aside time to make meal prep for the week a priority. I take one day out of the week to prepare and cook lots of healthy sides and meals. My kitchen transforms into a warm, happy place where I can show love not only me and my health but for my family as well. I usually make a huge pot of a different hearty, yummy veggie soup. I love homemade soup as it really nourishes my soul and I can eat it all week for lunch or dinner. Sometimes I will make a big pot of chili or spaghetti sauce packed with veggies. I always make a big pot of beans in my pressure cooker with onions and peppers and then transform them into creamy goodness with my immersion blender. I absolutely love my pressure cooker and feel every busy woman and mom and/or dad should have one. (I will post more on that in another blog). Every week I make some of my husbands favorites; like a food processor container full of homemade salsa with fresh tomatoes, cilantro, jalapeno and onion. As well as his favorite tofu scramble – with lots of veggies. I definitely have a sweet tooth so I have found healthy substitutes that have worked for my success, like raw fudgy brownies, almond macaroon balls or the occasional decadent dark chocolate grenache tart.
If I am out of prepped meals, I always have my stocked pantry, refrigerator or freezer so I can make a quick dinner in 10-15 minutes. Things like black bean tacos, grilled veggie fajitas, creamy dairy free macaroni and cheese, chili topped baked potatoes, nachos or spaghetti sauce with “zoodles” or pasta. That way when you are hungry, rushed and tired you always have something healthy and nutritious to grab. There is an old saying that if you fail to plan, then you plan to fail. I wholeheartedly agree with this as I have seen it time and again in my own life.
Something worth mentioning; I can feel the difference in my body, my mind and energy levels when I eat clean whole foods. I have been committed to a whole food plant based lifestyle over six years now. If I fall back into my old pattern of eating more processed foods which are higher in fat, oil, salt and sugar, I notice huge differences in my overall well-being. My energy and vitality are not as high, my emotional health is not as calm, I am not happy with the way my clothes fit (or the scale) and I notice my self destructive behaviors with food return. I start to feel stuck in my old vicious patterns and behaviors.
Bottom line… I think it is 100% worth the effort to eat unprocessed whole foods.