Everyone starts somewhere when they decide they want to begin their health journey. When it comes to food and healthy eating habits, depending on your upbringing, you may or may not feel comfortable jumping right in and making changes. Growing up, my Omi (Grandma), my mom, and aunts all cooked. Whether it was schnitzel, mashed potatoes, or soup, I was spoiled with top notch home cooked meals; so, for me, when I expressed interest in baking and cooking it only seemed natural.
Now, that I have become more interested in leading as much of a healthy, active lifestyle as I can, I have ventured into vegan dishes, plant-based foods, or alternatives to typical meals. I was unsure where to find good-tasting, cost-conscious, and user-friendly recipes myself but quickly indulged in various cook books, blogs, and online recipes to learn as much as I could.
My top three go-to people right now are:
- Joy McCarthy (author of Joyous Health)
- Marni Wasserman (author of Plant-Based Diets for Dummies)
- Angela Liddon (author of Oh She Glows)
I know what you are thinking, all three are TOO healthy for you. One is a vegan cook book, the other plant-based, and the last one provides healthier alternatives to everything that is supposed to taste good in our meals. WRONG. These women have a lot in common but the biggest thing for me is that all of their food tastes great. From talking to others who are trying to make changes in their eating habits, I often hear that people don’t want to substitute flavour for the health benefits. Well, you’re welcome, because the three ladies above are killing it, in not only the health benefits but also in the flavour category too!
Here are my tips to help keep you motivated to stay on track with your eating habits:
- Don’t go all in right away. If you are used to eating out, using prepackaged foods, or going heavy on the cheese, sauces, and dips, choose one thing each week to focus on. Draw your attention to that one area so you don’t become overwhelmed. From there you will notice that your body and eating styles have shifted. I am a huge cheese lover but I know it isn’t always great for my body. I slowly transitioned it out of my daily meals and now I rarely have it because I have found alternatives in which I enjoy just as much.
- Get inspired! For me, the three women above inspire me. Each week I try to flip through their books or check out their blogs to find inspiration to try either a completely new recipe or maybe a new ingredient I haven’t used in the past. Wherever you can find it, get inspired to try something new, whether it is a blog, Pintrest, or something your friend just tried the other night.
- Just do it. Jump in and don’t hesitate to give it a try. You will learn which spices to combine and which veggies taste great together through trial and error. Not everything tastes great the first time ‘round. Experiment and find what combinations work best for you.
Over the past year or so, I have begun to change my eating habits around. Not that I didn’t eat healthy in the past, but I am now making a conscious effort to listen to my body more. Although I love to indulge (who doesn’t), I am learning more and more what my body does and doesn’t like. I truly believe the 80/20 rule exists for food. Eat healthy 80% and indulge for the other 20%. However, remember that even healthier choices can be indulgences when we truly find something that tastes amazing. Treats do not have to be unhealthy to be enjoyed to the fullest.
Feel free to share some of your favourite resources or recipes to get inspired below!
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