This time of year, there are lots of diets and nutrition challenges going on, some of you reading this most likely are doing one yourself.

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While these are usually a great place for people to jumpstart a healthy lifestyle, I have a problem with the mindset in which most people go into these.

If you are new to eating healthy, you may be viewing your new diet or nutrition challenge as a huge list of foods you are now deprived of or can’t eat for “x” amount of time.

Don’t get me wrong here, it is necessary to understand and be educated on foods that are harmful to your health. You may very well need a hard copy list of these foods to avoid when starting off, especially if you are new to learning how to make healthier choices, however, you COMPLETELY miss the whole point if all you are focused on is what you CAN’T have.

Eating healthy is SO much more than just avoiding the junk.

Our body needs an abundance of micronutrients, vitamins and minerals from the foods we eat to have energy, think clearly, and to thrive!

So, instead of viewing each of your meals and snacks as deprivation or rules, I would encourage you to look at it this way: You have three-five chances a day to provide your body with as much nutrition as you possibly can that will help it to thrive and function optimally! This is a much more exciting challenge than looking at it the other way around.

If you can learn to change your mindset to fueling your body with nutrient dense foods, naturally the junk will be crowded off your plate. There simply won’t be any room left.

So, what does a plate of nutrient dense food look like?

You will do well to include the following at each meal:

  • Aim for ¾ of your plate to be vegetables, the remaining ¼ of your plate should include a high quality source of protein and good quality fat.
    • 1-2 heaping cup of leafy greens (kale, collard greens, spinach, romaine)
    • 1-2 cups of a variety of colorful vegetables ( carrots, bell peppers, zucchini, squash, cauliflower, broccoli, sweet potatoes, butternut squash)
    • ½ cup of a brightly colored fruits, especially the berries as they provide the highest amount of antioxidants (blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries)
    • 4-6 oz. of animal protein from grass-fed, pastured and organic sources
    • Good quality fat: this can come from the oil you cook your food in such as coconut oil or olive oil, avocado, or some nuts and seeds

If you are looking for a good place to source high quality animal protein, look no further than our very own local grass-fed meat farm, Slanker’s, located in Powderly Texas.

You can order online here or call in. If you let them know that Erin Finch referred you, you can get $5 off your first order!

Until next week, best in health.