Hi Ocean Dreamers - I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Since it's that time of year to eat lots of tasty food, I think this guest post by Heather is available for us to read at good time. It's been hard for me to eat healthy lately - there's chocolate and tasty holiday treats everywhere! Not to mention I'm sure most of us are stuffed from Thanksgiving food.
But, I'm going to try harder with eating healthy and these tips are going to help me (and hopefully you!)
If you’re wishing healthy eating were easier and more satisfying, you’re not alone. However, there are certain healthy foods that will make you feel downright fabulous. The key is to find healthful foods that appeal to your sense of indulgence and to learn how to prepare and serve healthy foods such that you feel like eating them is a privilege, not a chore.
The key to developing a successful healthy eating regimen is to tailor your menu to your specific taste. Perform an inventory of your favorite foods, listing everything you adore to eat (even the unhealthy stuff). From that list, come up with lists of comfort foods, daily dishes, special occasion dishes, and snacks.
Now identify what you love so much about each of these lists. Do you turn to salty, crunchy foods for snacks? Do you like bready foods when needing comforts? Do you love soups? Casseroles? Meat? Potatoes?
Now cross off everything on the list that is “bad for you”, and identify the foods you love that are healthy. Make sure those foods make the grocery list at least once a month. I like to use this list as my foundational list for every-week shopping. These items are my easy go-to healthy foods. They’re familiar and easy to remember to eat.
Invest in a Set of Excellent Cookbooks
To successfully switch your habits, you’re going to need some new recipes. Buy yourself several “healthy” recipe books that look tantalizing to you.
Now get out a cookbook and search for healthy alternative to the “bad” stuff on your list. You love crème brule? Search for a healthy alternative that will be sweet, creamy, and feel indulgent. Commit to trying these healthier recipes until you’ve successfully replaced most of the “bad” stuff on your list with “better” stuff.
Half of what makes a gourmet meal so luxurious is the presentation and description. The chef has prepared harivot verts (green beans) and truffles (mushrooms) on a bed of risotto (rice). Get the point? If you present your meals (and snacks) on smaller plates, with pretty garnishes and delectable drizzles of sauces or toppings, you’ll appreciate your healthy food more. Invest your time in decorating your food and then take your time appreciating it as you eat it.
When you do decide to indulge in a “naughty” food, think like the Europeans do. Americans are notoriously into supersizing portions, whereas Europeans indulge in small portions of rich foods, eating more slowly than we do and savoring each bite. This is why the French can eat croissants, brie, and chocolate and still be rail thin.
Invest in teensy tiny desert and serving dishes (find beautiful pieces to make this work even better) and serve beautiful (but small) servings of rich foods. Dress them up so they look gorgeous, and enjoy the entire experience. Smell your food before you taste it. Let it sit in your mouth, and chew slowly. Pause between bites, and enjoy the mingling, changing flavors. Scrape every bit from the dish (perhaps with your finger!) and fully enjoy the experience.
If you get the right attitude about food, even healthy food can be indulgent. Bon appétit!
Born and raised in North Carolina, Heather Green has worked as a fashion and beauty consultant as well as freelancing for various wedding, fashion, and health publications. She currently acts as the resident blogger for Online Nursing Degrees where she’s been researching online health care admin degrees as well as online medical transcription degrees.