You need an easier way to be healthy, don’t you?
I get it – you’re life is stressful enough as it is to completely overhaul your diet. I mean, would your spouse or kids even let you take away their sacred Mac ‘n Cheese or Digiorno Pizza?
It’s cool for some people to become Mr. or Mrs. I-Make-Everything-From-Scratch (like us), but I also know that it’s just not realistic for everyone. If you’ve got picky kids and a stubborn spouse, every change turns into a battle.
So, let me help you pick your battles 🙂
Also, please don’t fall for the lie that you’re a failure because you’re not ready to do anything but small diet changes.
I want you to celebrate the small victories, because they’re still victories.
And the cool part is that one small change a week will turn into massive change a year from now.
So, first things first – you’re looking for the most bang for your buck changes. After all, if you’re only making a change here or there, it better actually do something for you, right?
If I were starting over, these are the first 5 things I’d work on:
1. Cut out the Vegetable Oils
Most oils nowadays are completely unfit for human consumption.
Consider how Canola oil came to be – it started out as rapeseed and used as a lubricant for steam engines during WWII. When demand declined after the war, producers looked for other ways to sell it.
Researchers bred the Canola plant from the rapeseed (because regular rapeseed tastes and looks nasty) and processed it into an oil.
So… they took a plant used for machine lubrication that had an unacceptable color and taste, and modified it to be used for human consumption. To make things worse, scientists have since created genetically modified versions that are becoming increasingly popular among farmers.
In other words, it doesn’t come from a naturally-occurring plant, but a laboratory experiment. Sounds healthy, huh?
Most oils we eat nowadays are terrible for you, part of the reason being that they contain dangerous amounts of polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs). Stay away from soybean, cottonseed, peanut, corn, sunflower, safflower, and of course, canola oil (aka The Oil of Death)
According to dietary geniuses Mary Enig and Sally Fallon, diets high in PUFA’s cause cancer, heart disease, immune system dysfunction, damage to the liver and lungs, digestive disorders, depressed learning ability, impaired growth, weight gain, and damage to reproductive organs.
Wait… we’re allowed to eat this stuff?
Instead of your vegetable oils, using butter, organic oil, ghee, lard, and tallow will cause an immediate improvement in your overall health.
2. Switch Out Margarine For Butter
Kinda goes in line with #1 as margarine is usually full of PUFAs. It’s a really, really fake food that your body simply doesn’t know how to process. Margarine’s hard on your metabolism, digestion, and even throws hormone balances out of whack.
Plus, it just doesn’t taste as good as butter 🙂 I mean have you actually had it on toast??
And yes, we know all about fat. Obviously fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol aren’t even digested. They’re just rerouted straight to the arteries surrounding your heart to shorten your life by 25 years. At least that’s what most food manufacturers would have us believe, right?
The low-fat industry is so INCREDIBLY HUGE nowadays that these multi-billion dollar companies will fight to keep that income – even at the expense of the truth. These companies have to add a little somethin’ extra to replace the flavor lost be removing the fat – the culprit often being harmful flavorings or just more sugar.
Fat is one of the three macronutrients your body needs – along with carbs and protein. Why does it make sense that it would be healthy to cut one out as much as possible? The time in our lives when proper nutrition is MOST important is as an infant. Infants drink breast milk… which is chock full of cholesterol and saturated fat. If it’s good enough for our babies, why would it be less beneficial for us as adults?
Cholesterol actually contributes to proper brain function, producing sex hormones, and proper cellular function. It’s an important building block for each of our cells and even helps to patch up damaged arteries, actually preventing heart attacks.
Now I’ll leave you to the blissful task of daydreaming about how to increase your butter consumption.
3. Drink Raw Milk
The last two people that I told to drink raw milk said “Ewww gross!” and “That sounds dangerous.”
Clearly, the world needs a little educatin’.
A couple of quick facts:
- Heart disease skyrocketed about the same time as low-fat milk and margarine became popular (about 50% higher today than in 1900 despite huge drops in fat consumption).
- Commercial cows are so unhealthy that they drip millions of cells of pus per gallon.
- Pasteurization is necessary only because of that nasty pus and diseases.
- Raw milk comes from grass-fed cows that aren’t filled with antibiotics or genetically engineered.
- On most feedlots, the number 1 cause of death of cattle is caused from corn and grain consumption – if it’s making them sick, their meat won’t be as nutritious for us.
- 10 million people in the U.S. alone drink raw milk. We’re not as alone as we think.
- Studies across the world show many of the healthiest indigenous populations get a large percentage of their calories from raw milk.
In some states, it’s hard to get. In many places, you can do a quick Google search and find farms that directly sell the raw milk. For us, there’s a real food store that Erin swings by on her Monday shopping trips. If you absolutely, positively can’t find raw milk, see if you can find something like Kalona milk (grass-fed, pasteurized, non-homogenized) or stick to whole milk from cows not treated with rBST.
Sally Fallon says to drink ¼ gallon per day… and she’s way smarter than I am 🙂
Alright… so not quite as easy as the first three – considering everything we eat nowadays seems to have sugar or white flour!
But here’s the thing.
You already know they’re bad for you, so I don’t need to go into great detail about the damage they do to your body.
They’re completely empty foods in an unnatural state. Your body just doesn’t know what to do with them, and you’re substituting essential nutrients with calorie-dense fluff.
For 1 cup of sugar, substitute any of the following:
- ½ – ? C honey
- 1 C sucanat
- ½ – ¾ C maple syrup
For bread, stick to sourdough and sprouted breads. The process used in preparing these breads removes phytic acid (an anti-nutrient that blocks mineral absorption) and breaks down gluten, making these breads more easily digestible.
If you simply can’t stand cooking with sprouted, don’t want to shop for sprouted, or can’t afford it, at least make the switch to unbleached or whole wheat. It’s not a hard switch, but your body will appreciate it 🙂
In our society’s witch-hunt to root out all sources of fat and cholesterol in our diet, eggs became the en vogue food to slander. They kept showing up on those “10 Foods Making You Fat” type of lists you see on trendy magazines at the checkout line.
People began doing crazy things like buying liquid eggs in a carton or tossing out the yolks.
Have you ever eaten 10 egg whites scrambled?? It’s not possible to enjoy that as a human being.
The good news is you don’t have to eat that again. In fact, you shouldn’t.
Not that egg whites are bad (they’re one of the purest sources of protein in nature), but you’re throwing out possibly the healthiest part of the egg.
Remember all that stuff above about fat and cholesterol? Eggs are one of the best sources in nature to get that stuff. Sally Fallon suggests eating as many egg yolks as you can stomach, from putting them on salads to including them in your morning smoothie.
Try to get eggs from pastured hens as their nutrition profile laps that of regular eggs – check out the deep orange yolks for proof.
Any other healthy food choices you suggest? Leave a comment and tell us what you think the #1 diet change that YOU could make is!