Are you having a hard time sticking to a healthy diet? Are you overwhelmed with information and finding it difficult to know what to eat on a daily basis? There's alot of information and options floating around out there and it can get confusing. I'd like to encourage you to create a daily foundation of meals to eliminate the guess work of "what should I eat today?" and solidify your healthy habits.
Unless you are a regular Rachel Ray in the kitchen, forget the tricky recipes - no one has time for these! What you need are tactics. I've been vegan for several years, and what I know from experience is that keeping it simple creates lasting habits
My eating base line stays pretty much the same day in day out. Eating similarly each day takes the guess work out of what to eat. Here's my baseline:
Breakfast: Gluten-free, often raw granola with almond milk.
I like cereal because I'm often kind of thirsty in the morning and the almond milk wets my whistle, while the nuts and dried fruits in the granola satisfies my hunger for a couple hours.
("raw" simply means unaltered food or food that has been dehydrated, not cooked. Raw foods have high a high nutritional value because their good properties haven't been killed by high heat.)
Snacks throughout the day: I'll often have fruit (bananas, apples, grapefruit... whatever), raw chocolate macaroons (this is actually an easy recipe - just google it), a Larabar* (this brand is simply dehydrated fruits and nuts) or an avocado with gluten free, often raw, crackers.
Lunch: Quinoa salad or something like Amy's* (gluten free) organic soups with broccoli I add right in.
Quinoa Salad: Make quinoa beforehand and let cool. Chop whatever veggies you want, plus a little bit of onion, and rip up some leafy greens. Avocado is also a great addition. Add to cool quinoa. Top with olive oil, apple cider vinegar and salt/pepper - mix it all up. So healthy, so good.
I keep it light for lunch usually because I like to eat my biggest meal for dinner.
Dinner: Veggie stir fry and quinoa. Start quinoa then start chopping stir fry stuff. Ginger, garlic, onions first. This is your super food base that will add tons of flavor and g. Then chop up your veggies: Broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, beets, mushrooms, green beans, zucchini, peppers... I usually choose about 3 vegetables to work with. Stir these all up in a frying pan on medium-high heat with sesame oil and a bit of water on the base (I add a bit of water to steam and soften the veggies). Add in some leafy greens or my favorite - basil, toward the end. When the veggies have softened up a bit season them: Sea/himalayan salt, pepper, hot sauce, tomato paste - whatever floats your boat. Then, scoop your quinoa portion into a bowl (this is where I like to add olive oil) and add the stir fried veggies on top. Mix all around and you ready to eat the best thing!
My name is pretty much synonymous with quinoa because I eat it almost every day! But I swear, as a food lover, I enjoy it every single time I eat it! The quinoa stir fry is exactly what your body wants; carbohydrates (from veggies) , fats (sesame/ olive oil), sugar (veggies. Think carrots), protein (quinoa). So you feel fantastic after eating it. Why would I stray from that?
And of course I drink quite a bit of fluids throughout the day. Usually about 1.5 Liters and several cups of white tea, and a cup or 2 of coffee with almond or coconut milk in it. Water intake varies. I drink lots compared to friends who drink very little, but we both manage epic 7+ hour rock climbs the same. Just make sure your pee is pale yellow and you are going fairly often throughout the day.
Remember, to ensure you create healthy habits - keep it simple until it becomes routine.
With most things in life, simplicity is key to optimizing time and keeping stress low. If you can develop a simple tactic to eating right* (in this case gluten-free, dairy-free, red-meat free, high raw and mostly organic) and getting exercise each day (or most days) you will ensure these new practices turn into habits.
Congratulations on taking your health into your hands - feeling good from the inside-out is one of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves.