You make sure to eat lots of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and nuts and seeds. You even may go so far as to buy organic, low fat milk.
But, if you’re interested in diving deeper into nutrition and eating as much for health as you do for aesthetics, it’s a good idea to ditch modern dogma and take a look back. And I mean way back.
When it comes to eating healthy, a good rule of thumb is that if your great, great grandmother would have eaten it, go for it.
Here are 7 Facts to Take Your Nutrition Up a Notch:
- Fat is your friend. Our ancestors would have never turned up their noses at the skin off a chicken, dark meat, whole eggs, and full-fat dairy. In fact, the myth that saturated fat is bad for you has been widely debunked in the medical community.
Fat is an integral part to cellular function and helps you to feel satisfied.
Reach for full-fat dairy (bonus points it’s from grass-fed cows or even raw), coconut oil, butter, red meat, olive oil, bone-in meat, etc.
Fats to avoid: Cheap hydrogenated oils like canola, sunflower, safflower, vegetable, etc.
- Gluten sensitivity is a real thing. While a lot of fun gets poked at the gluten-free community, millions of people feel better when avoiding gluten.
Much like how one can be lactose intolerant and not allergic, eating gluten can make many people constipated, bloated, swollen, or have diarrhea. Symptoms may even manifest as knee or other joint pain, brain fog, moodiness, acne, and more.
Gluten and its ill effects are still being studied.
And actually, some experts say that the side effects are because of the pesticides that gluten-containing ingredients are sprayed with.
Whatever the reason, try cutting gluten out of your diet and see how you feel.
*Caveat: avoid gluten-free ‘junk food’ like ice cream, cookies, and bread except for on occasion.
- Try soaking your nuts, seeds, and grains overnight to increase the digestibility and nutrient availability. All grains contain an anti-nutrient called phytic acid that blocks the absorption of the plant’s nutrition.
But, by simply soaking beans, nuts, rice, and seeds overnight, phytic acid is neutralized, making the nutrients easier to assimilate. If you do eat bread, stick to varieties that have already been soaked and sprouted, like the brand Ezekiel.
- Eat more seaweed. Seaweed is high in iodine, which is essential for healthy thyroid function and the regulation of hormones in your body.
It’s also high in calcium, magnesium, iron, and vitamin C.
You can buy seaweed flakes to sprinkle on your salad or garnish your dish with.
You’ll never even taste it. 😉
- Get your regular fruits and vegetables out of rotation for a while and try something new. Eating the same foods over and over can unfortunately cause your body to develop an intolerance.
Do you always add blueberries to your morning smoothie?
Try shaking it up with mango or papaya.
Learn how to prepare some different vegetables like parsnips, leeks, collard greens, etc.
Instead of rice and potatoes, try some other complex carbs like adzuki beans.
Give chicken a rest for a bit and go for barramundi.
- Turn your bones into a stock. It’s well known that chicken soup is great when you’re sick and good the soul, but it shouldn’t be limited to just times of illness.
It turns out that homemade stock from any kind of bones is a commonality between countries with the healthiest diets in the world.
Mediterranean, Japanese, and the French all simmer their own stocks from leftover protein, even fish!
Nowadays you can even buy bones in the freezer department of Whole Foods.
My favorite way to make mine tasty is to add a strip of nori paper, a kind of seaweed, into my crockpot with the bones.
It makes the soup nice and savory while getting all the benefits and minerals from the seaweed.
- Be mindful of what you put on your skin. Skin is our body’s largest organ. Just like how what you eat can disrupt your hormones and overall health, so can toxic ingredients from beauty products.
This doesn’t mean you have start from scratch with all new products. Just start by trying coconut or another oil for your skin cream and take baby steps from there.
So, try a little whole, raw milk, enjoy some roasted chicken legs with their delicious crispy skin, and turn those bones into a fabulous stock. It’s good for you!
What’s your favorite way to kick your nutrition up a notch? Let me know in the comments below!
I’d love to read it and I know the other readers always appreciate extra tips. 🙂