“Healthy food tastes gross” she said to me as we worked through her struggles with losing weight. “I just don’t know what to eat and I hate the taste of broccoli.”
I knew I had the answer when she said those words.
You see, if you are anything like Chrissy above, you think that eating healthy immediately means that broccoli and kale are involved. You most likely have tried a diet that was all about the plain chicken, broccoli, kale, or brown rice.
Chrissy is a woman that just wants to lose that extra 10 pounds she has been hanging on to. She expressed to me her desire for more energy, to eat out less, and to ENJOY the food she was eating.
After some digging, she told me she has tried it all, Paleo, Weight Watchers, Keto, and all the different diets. She usually stops after about a week because she gets tired of calorie counting and she is confused by what she should actually be eating.
Does this sound like you? I offered some tips to Chrissy that I want to offer to you today. Here are 5 tips for you to make a significant impact on the way you eat and feel.
1. Healthy Food Taste Buds
We have all seen a child who one day doesn’t like the way something tastes and weeks later it is their favorite food. Why is that? Well, our taste buds change and regenerate. We watch how this impacts children over the longer-term, but there is also a short-term impact as well.
Every 10-14 days our taste buds regenerate. This is this important to know if you are someone who thinks “healthy food is gross”. Chance are your taste buds need time to come around to the taste and enjoyment of the food.
There are several other factors that go in to taste and the flavor of food, also. Like did you know, our taste buds are influenced by our thoughts? Our brain learns what foods are good by us watching our friends and family eat. Social cues, like watching someone we admire eat something different can change the way we enjoy that food. Interesting, right?
Give yourself 10-14 days of trying new foods. Allow your tastebuds to regenerate. This means you will need to give up processed foods so your body can fall in love with natural sugars and flavors. Try vegetables in various forms over a period of time. Last, be around people or engage with people that enjoy healthier foods.
2. Flavoring Healthy Foods
When I asked Chrissy how she made her vegetables (when she made them), she told me that she usually steamed them and added some butter. To me, that sounds pretty basic and quite honestly, I too would be bored or turned off by vegetables like that.
As a culture, we love to enjoy the foods that we are eating. Food can be more than nourishment, it can be a source of joy. So, we have to find ways to flavor our food in a way that is enjoyable.
Find flavors that you love and don’t be afraid to experiment. Fresh herbs, garlic, onion, and seasonings are a great way to flavor your food. Healthy fats like avocado oil or avocado make foods more palatable when paired with bold flavors like garlic. Use spices like chili powder, cumin, mustard, or curry to add flavor to your meals.
3. Finding Flavor Balance
In addition to making foods taste good, you will want to find some type of balance with your meal. We have all suffered through a meal that was bland and boring, right? Healthy cooking and eating doesn’t need to be this way!!
Finding a balance between the flavors on your plate will help make a meal more enjoyable. Balance includes sweet, salty, sour, and/or spicy. A meal doesn’t have to be all of these things, but having variety is key.
When creating meals, find a flavor balance you enjoy. Season grilled chicken with pepper and lemon for a spicy-sour taste. You can pair vegetables with sauerkraut or kimchi (fermented cabbage) to add a salty-sour crunch with your food. For some sweetness, try fruit with your meals. Bake chicken with orange juice and coconut aminos (a great soy sauce substitute) for a sweet-salty flavor. You can also add crushed red peppers to the dish to spice it up!
4. Eat What’s in Season and Local
Eating local has become a hot topic lately. Why is eating local and in season important? Well, foods that are grown in an organic way have more flavor and taste better. (ps… if you need more inspiration on why you should eat local/organic, check out this post)
Have you ever had tomatoes from a friends garden that were just bursting with flavor? That’s because the tomato was picked from the vine when it was ripe. It was also grown naturally and most likely without any pesticides. This is usually true for local grown or farmer’s market produce.
The produce on the grocery store shelf was picked early so they can be perfect when they are put on the store shelf. Sometimes produce travels days or weeks before it makes it to you, the consumer. If foods were picked at their peak ripeness, they would be over ripe or rotted by the time they got to the shelf.
In addition, eating foods grown in season is a way to have variety and an array of vitamins and minerals. Food grown outside of their peak season are subject to more pesticides, herbicides, or preservatives.
Check out your local farmer’s market before going to the grocery store. The food at a farmer’s market has usually traveled a shorter distance and therefore is picked at peak freshness. Foods grown local are considered to not only have more nutrients, but more flavor too. This is also a great way to keep money int he community and to support local businesses.
5. Hide it, if you must
I kind of giggle when I write this, but I know it is hard to make a change. My greatest desire is for women to feel energized from the foods they eat. I know that whole foods and eliminating processed foods can do this. Money back guarantee.
However, if you are still struggling with the idea of incorporating more vegetables, just hide them in your food. We usually tell this trick to mothers with picky eaters.
Shredded vegetables work great inside meatloaf or burger style patties. You can also put a handful of spinach in your next smoothie. Yes, the rumors are true, you CAN’T even taste it. If you make hash brown style potatoes, try sweet potatoes or try shredding zucchini to include in the potatoes.
A Bonus Tip
I also think having great recipes to choose from is so important when you are starting your journey to eating healthier. I mentioned in this post how much I love the Instant Loss Cookbook. The recipes are easy to make in an Instant Pot and there are several recipes that don’t require an Instant Pot. Brittany uses whole foods in her recipes and has limited dairy.
Make a Lifestyle Change
Helping Chrissy change her mindset around food is something that brings me so much joy in life. Taking a woman through the process of cleaning from processed foods, making mindful choices, learning what and how much to buy, and helping them feed vibrant, clear energy is INCREDIBLE.
Your changes can be small and taken one day at a time. However, let me warn you that you should make sure that you are actually making changes daily.
I see too often women who make excuses and put off getting healthy because of this, that, or the other. This year, don’t let that be you. Making healthy changes is the greatest investment you could ever make in life. Healthy eating, whole foods, superfoods, and eliminating processed foods is the GREATEST health insurance.
If you are desiring a change in your life and still need help getting there, consider letting me help you. Reach out and let’s find a solution for you. My calendar is here for a call or you can email me firstname.lastname@example.org.
Consider joining my private Facebook Group where you can connect with other women that are on the same path as you.
You are worth it and with the right tools, you can make the choices that will make you feel better. It truly is a lifestyle and I know you are capable of creating it. Let me help you get there.
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I appreciate you!