Maybe like me you love to experiment and try food from different cultures, perhaps the thought of never again slurping down a shared bowl of traditional pasta with loved ones or reaching pizza heaven on the side of a pavement somewhere on your travels, is something that holds you back from venturing even slightly into a natural food lifestyle. (Just for the record, I have prepared the most foodgasmic raw vegan pizza and even pasta that had my guests moaning for more but that’s a story for another day).
I have come to the conclusion that quite frankly, it’s not going to happen! People are simply not going to relinquish old eating habits – they really do not care about any kind of “glow”, mental clarity or even just feeling absolutely amazing … the connection to their food stories, the memories, the enjoyment and rush is simply too strong. I have found a way that works for me, a kind of ‘sweet spot’ that enables me to maintain this lifestyle long-term without the kind of rigidity and dogma one often hears about which also scares people from even trying.
some sweet spot tips:
- find at least 3 delicious quick home-made salad dressings (essential to enjoying your salad)
- find at least 3 amazing salad combinations that are satiating, easy on the pocket and tasty
- find 3 smoothies which are simple, easy on the pocket and tasty (my go to for when I feel lazy, am low on cash or in a hurry)
- choose one or two days a week to deviate from your plan to eat only fresh; for example, I’ve chosen Saturdays to eat whatever I want! (Perhaps you prefer Saturdays and Sundays – it’s your choice, you are in control)
- My daughter loves meat so the compromise I’ve reached for her is from time to time, I prepare her salad with small strips of chicken but, I make sure the salad is delicious and the green outweighs the meat by far
- alternate! do not stick to the same smoothies or juices or salads until you cannot see them anymore; the beauty of being human is we love diversity. I tend to try out new things all the time but I have my staples for emergencies if things are running low in the fridge or I’ve been pressed for time to go to the farmers market. True health requires diversity!
- if it does not taste good the first time don’t give up on the whole thing; try something else! I have tried smoothies, juices and even salads that I did not and still do not enjoy. An example of that is kimchi, I know it’s supposed to be super healthy but I just do not enjoy it. I know bitter salads are really healthy for the gut, but I do not enjoy bitter at all so, I found alternatives instead of just using it as an excuse for why I stick to non-nutritional food
- It takes time. Fall in love, be open to this lifestyle, try not to go into it with contempt and a determination to fail. I see this all the time the bashing of beautiful, fresh and (oh Lord help us all) ‘healthy’ food. If you are open to try even one or two smoothies a week to replace the burger or the cookies, do that! It’s one burger or one pack of cookies (or both) LESS that you are consuming per week.
There’s so much more I’d like to share with you, this is a very inexhaustible topic; I do despise compromise because it’s often a very slippery slope and sometimes it’s best to just do the all or nothing route, but for me this is what works at the moment for where I am at in my life. The most important thing is to make sure that fresh greens and delicious fruit outweigh all other food consumption.