All of the health and nutrition out there can be overwhelming and down right discouraging, are we right? When you just want to be healthier! It seems that everywhere we turn, some health professional or diet guru is claiming something “completely transformational” from just three ingredients, or, even more maddening, the complete opposite of what you read the week before from someone apparently equally qualified.
Well, we at Ki’s Kitchen are here to help. We know that changing your eating patterns is not an easy, or a quick process. It takes time, energy, and commitment.
We have been there.
A few years ago, my husband and I were both overweight, had sluggish metabolisms, and more than a few inflammatory issues between the two of us. Through my inherent love of flavourful food and cooking, knowledge gained through the study of Ayurveda, along with much trial and error, we are both healthier than we’ve ever been.
We are here today to tell you that you, too, can regain control over your health and can eliminate bad food habits from your daily routine.
However, as we have learned through our journey of helping so many people across our local communities and beyond, gradual change is easier, and therefore, more sustainable, than taking drastic, overnight measures.
This means tossing your canola, safflower, or other vegetable oils, and replacing them with healthier versions like avocado, coconut, and olive oil.
It means looking for baked versions of foods as opposed to fried, and choosing the side salad with your entrée, as opposed to the fries.
It means topping your salad with sliced avocado, and a sprinkling of seeds and/or nuts – as opposed to bacon, cheese, or lots of creamy dressing.
This means cutting back (preferably cutting out completely) sugary sodas and fruit juices, and replacing them with a glass of lemon water, flavoured carbonated water, or, cut your juice in half with water.
Replacing the sugar (or at least reducing) in your baked goods with applesauce, pureed pumpkin, or ripe, mashed banana.
If you feel tempted to snack on cookies or other sweets during the day, try cutting up a variety of crunchy raw veggies and keeping them in the fridge. If you really need something sweet, try a couple of wedges of granny smith apple dipped in some peanut (or other nut) butter.
Toss out those sugary, sticky BBQ sauces in favour of dry rubs that are packed with depth and complexity of flavour.
Unfortunately, most of us don’t get enough fresh vegetables in our diet. And that goes for those of us who are trying! A good rule of thumb is to look at your dinner plate – it should ideally be 2/3 filled with vegetables, and the remaining 1/3 should be a combination of lean protein and/or carbohydrate of choice.
There are SO many wonderful options available – fill your plate with a wide variety of rainbow-coloured veggies. Your entire body will thank you.
Even if you are looking to reduce the amount of carbohydrates you eat, you can replicate them with one of nature’s amazing creations – cauliflower – it can be mashed to mimic potatoes, riced to imitate rice, and even turned into pizza crust. It is one extremely versatile veggie!
Another great way to increase your veggie intake is to add them to your morning smoothie. For example, a handful of spinach, or a carrot or beet when added to your favourite blend of fruit and non-dairy milk, can’t be tasted, and, it boosts the nutritional value immensely.
This can be a tough one for those of you who love cheese. However, there are so many studies that show dairy products to be a key factor in many inflammatory conditions.
We recommend a gradual reduction in the amount of dairy that you eat. Additionally, there are so many milk alternatives available today (almond and cashew are delicious), as well as more and more cheese alternatives appearing on the scene all the time.
Have you ever tried coconut yogurt? It is really good.
And, if you are looking for the creamy texture that you are used to getting from pudding, try soaking some chia seeds in almond or cashew milk and topping it with a few fresh berries. Yum!
At Ki’s Kitchen, we cook and eat a completely plant-based diet. However, we know that isn’t for everyone. And so, we recommend cutting back on the amount of animal products that you eat.
Many families are opting to participate in “Meatless Mondays,” or are reducing the quantity of the meat they consume (ex. for a family of 4 eating a stir fry for dinner – instead of 4 chicken breasts, they cook 2, and increase the amount of veggies they add to compensate).
So, there are 5 baby steps to a healthier you that you can implement in your home at any time. We would recommend taking a gradual (try implementing 1 step at a time) approach (as opposed to going “cold turkey”) and seeing how it goes from there.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us if we can help you by providing nourishing, soulful, and healthy meals for you and your family.
BONUS TIP: Start your day with a glass of warm lemon water. This will kick start your metabolism and get your digestive juices flowing.
BONUS TIP #2: if you are eating at a restaurant, ask for the sauce or dressing “on the side.” That way, you can control the amount of potentially unnecessary extra calories, fat, and sodium.
Lastly, thank you so much for visiting! I hope you have found some valuable information, if so, I’d love to hear about it!
Please feel free to share this post with anyone who might benefit, and comments are always welcome!
I look forward to connecting with you next time!
From our kitchen to yours,
Love + Peace