Change 7 Items on Your Grocery List and Change Your Life!
It seems so hard to know what’s good for you and what’s not anymore. How do you know what to eat? Why can’t you have your favorite foods? It just doesn’t seem to make sense. And it doesn’t seem fair.
Well, now you have a guide to start you on the path to managing your health more proactively.
These 7 changes show you how simple it can be to manage your health daily.
You don’t necessarily have to give up anything. When you know the rules of the game, you get to decide how you want to play. It’s all about BALANCE.
1) Switch white bread for whole grain bread.
The primary difference between white bread and whole grain bread is what was taken out. In white flour, the bran and the germ have been removed from the wheat berry, leaving only the endosperm, or the starchy part.(Clark) The bran is where most of the fiber is. Fiber is important for keeping the digestive system clear and it helps us to feel full faster, so we eat less and stay slim. The germ is where most of the nutrients are, having “more nutrients per ounce than any other vegetable or grain.” (Crystal)
By eating whole grain products, you get the benefit of a cleaner digestive system, less weight gain, and more nutritious meals.
2) Switch refined table salt or sea salt for natural or organic sea salt.
There is considerable debate about salt. Over the years, we have heard that salt is bad for you. Then, it’s good for you. Then, it’s bad for you again.
Truth is natural salt contains several important minerals that the body needs to function. If you think about it, your tears taste salty, your blood tastes salty, and that gunk that forms in your eyes over night is caked salt. Your body needs salt to survive.
The reason natural or organic salt is better for you than regular, iodized table or sea salt is because “[t]able salt is normally rock or ocean salt that is mined, heat blasted, chemically treated, and then anti-caking agents and iodine added to it. What you have left is table salt that is basically dead.” (Jones, 2007) Your body doesn’t know what to do with it after it’s been chemically treated.
Table salt disrupts the body’s natural process and collects in and around the organs. When you die or have surgery, they find the deposits causing doctors to make claims that salt is bad for you. Well, they are right, sort of.
Natural and organic sea salt is processed effectively by the body. Your body gets the minerals it needs without disrupting the rest of the body’s many processes.
3) Switch refined sugar for maple syrup or agave nectar.
Refined sugars have been put through so many processes that there is absolutely no nutritional value left. You get all the calories and none of the benefits. What good is that? Also, refined sugars have had all of natures safe-guards removed. Their glycemic index is tremendously high, meaning they can cause blood sugar to rise and fall quickly. These sudden shift cause problems in the body and may lead to conditions like diabetes.
With maple syrup, if you select a natural or organically farmed brand, you will get trace minerals like manganese and zinc, in addition to a rich, sweet taste. Go for Grade B or C. The darker the grade, the more nutritional benefits maple syrup may offer.
Agave nectar is a honey-like sweetener produced from the agave plant. It’s a vegan product that is processed at lower temperatures, so it’s still considered raw. Agave also touts a lower glycemic index score(Reinagel, 2009) than most sweeteners, including honey, meaning it is more agreeable to the body and less likely to cause issues with blood sugar.
4) Switch coffee for green, white or red tea.
The coffee bean may have some antioxidant attributes, but overall, coffee is bad news. Generally, people who drink coffee do so with so much milk and sugar, they aren’t really having a breakfast beverage. They are having dessert in the morning! Coffee has a naturally acidic pH level. When you add the acidic leanings of milk and refined, nutritionally devoid sugars, you have a Molotov cocktail for the body.
Also, people who drink coffee do so for the caffeine. They need that pick me up in the morning. Often, just one cup of coffee won’t due. The question is why do they need the pick me up? What is their body short of? Sleep? Nutrition? Exercise?
In addition to great taste, teas offer nutritional benefits, like catechin polyphenols which is a super antioxidant. Green, white and red teas are more alkalizing, as well. And green and white teas offer lowered levels of caffeine. Caffeine can be a great stimulant, when used in moderation.
If you must still drink coffee, cut back the amount you drink to reasonable amounts. If you are truly drinking it for the enjoyment, then this won’t be difficult to do or rationalize. Also, when you drink it, prepare it without dairy or refined sugars. Try Stevia or some other natural sweetener. In Europe, many people drink coffee with lemon, which is highly alkalizing, to neutralize the acidic properties of coffee.
If you love the taste of coffee, you don’t have to do without. Try your coffee this way to shift the pH balance. “[P]ut a little bit, about a quarter to a half a scoop, of Sea Calcium and take a Magnesium tablet and break it open, and sprinkle about a third into the coffee and stir it up.”(Yentzer, 2009)
5) Switch white potatoes for sweet potatoes.
Like we mentioned earlier talking about agave versus other sweeteners, the Glycemic index of a food is the measure of how much and how rapidly your blood sugar rises after you eat a food. Reader’s Digest reports that when you “[e]at a baked sweet potato instead of a baked white potato, and your blood sugar will rise about 30 percent less!”(Sweet Potatoes)
White potatoes have less fiber, less nutrients, and a higher Glycemic index, making them akin to refined sugars in the white versus sweet potato debate. Which side would you choose?
For a great complement to any meal, slice two or three sweet potatoes and put them in a shallow broiler pan. Roast them for 45 minutes at 375º. Add some dried rosemary, sliced onions, minced garlic and a little olive oil. Stir and roast for another 15 to 30 minutes, or until they are done to your liking. Good and good for you!
6) Switch artificial sweeteners for stevia.
Artificial sweeteners are made from chemical combinations that trick the tongue into thinking that you are eating something sweet. Because they aren’t real food, they have no caloric value and, therefore, don’t cause weight gain.
The problem is that the body generally doesn’t know how to process these chemicals and they end up disrupting the system, if not causing disease. The body will take these chemicals and “quarantine” them in fat cells until it can figure out what to do with them, so the toxins end up spending even more time in the body, instead of just being purged.
Stevia is a non-caloric sweetener. But stevia is derived from the leaf of a plant found in Paraguay. Completely natural, stevia is known to be 300 times sweeter than sugar.(Richard) Stevia has also been found to decrease blood sugar levels.
7) Switch regular milk for natural, unsweetened non-dairy milk.
“Cow’s milk was not designed to be compatible with the human body.”(Harbarenko) Both Dr. Benjamin Spock and Frank A. Oski, M.D claim that cow’s milk causes complications in the body and disrupts systems. Many people have “allergic” reactions to dairy, but, because the symptoms show up in too many different ways, they are never officially diagnosed.
Even without considering allergic reactions to cow’s milk, nowadays, dairy is so filled with hormones and chemical additives and the pasteurization process kills off all beneficial enzymes, milk isn’t nutritionally worthwhile.
Because milks have become such an integral part of our diet, try soy or nut milk. There are several different kinds and brands. They are tasty and wholesome. Just be sure the one you choose is unsweetened. Otherwise, you are just adding more sugars to your diet and undermining the good you just did.
For more information of health issues, visit us at http://www.welltodoliving.com. We help you discover how to be Well To Do the things you love!
Well To Do Living, Inc.
Clark, E. (n.d.). 3 Important Differences Between White Bread and Whole Wheat. Retrieved July 11, 2009, from EZine Articles: http://ezinearticles.com/?3-Important-Differences-Between-White-Bread-and-Whole-Wheat&id=44657
Crystal, G. (n.d.). What is Wheat Germ? Retrieved July 11, 2009, from WiseGeek: http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-wheat-germ.htm
Harbarenko, C. (n.d.). Dairy and Non-Dairy Milk. Retrieved July 18, 2009, from Squidoo: http://www.squidoo.com/milk_n_milk
Jones, W. (2007, March 25). Natural Sea Salt Versus Table Salt, the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Retrieved July 18, 2009, from Ezine Articles: http://ezinearticles.com/?Natural-Sea-Salt-Versus-Table-Salt,-the-Good,-the-Bad-and-the-Ugly&id=502186
Reinagel, M. (2009, April 17). Agave Nectar: A Healthier Option? Retrieved July 18, 2009, from Nutrition Data: Know What You Eat: http://blog.nutritiondata.com/ndblog/2009/04/agave-hype.html
Richard, D. (n.d.). Questions & Answers About Stevia. Retrieved July 18, 2009, from Stevia.com: http://www.stevia.com/SteviaArticle.asp?Id=2269
Sweet Potatoes. (n.d.). Retrieved July 18, 2009, from Reader’s Digest.com: http://www.rd.com/living-healthy/foods-to-lower-your-blood-sugar-sweet-potatoes/article36625.html
Yentzer, J. (2009, July 11). alkaline vs acidic breakfast. Retrieved July 18, 2009, from alkaline health: http://alkalinehealth.net/alkaline-vs-acidic-breakfast/