This article appeared in the August 2011 issue of “L Magazine.”
Two of my favorite foods are apples and broccoli. I have other foods that I count as “favorites” as well, but they wouldn’t fit well in a column whose focus is helping you become healthier and more fit – unless we could figure out a way to include Peanut Butter Cups!
Those 2 foods are my “Go To” foods and they receive that high distinction because they meet the following 3 guidelines:
1. They both taste awesome. If you don’t think they taste good, it’s probably because you’re filling up on processed junk and have totally messed up your taste buds – cut out the junk for a couple weeks and your body will adjust back to liking the things we’re supposed to eat.
2. They’re loaded with vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and the all-important fiber. Nutrient content should be one of the first things you know about a food if you want to lose weight and be healthy. The higher the nutrient content, the more often you should eat it.
3. They’re versatile. You can eat them by themselves, or add them to another “main dish,” like healthy salads, as toppings. You could eat the broccoli after dipping it in some hummus or add the apple to another snack that’s a bit salty to hit some different tastebuds.
If you’re interested in losing weight, or just being a healthier person, I think you should eat them too.
But what if you don’t like those two foods?
What then? Should you eat them anyway?
That depends on your reason for not liking them, but I think most should try to eat them on a regular basis.
More importantly, you should find a few “go to” foods that you can have on a regular basis that are super healthy.
Foods that you can have as snacks, add to a meal as a “topping” or eat as a stand-alone side dish.
That’s another reason I chose the apples and broccoli – they fit all of those guidelines.
I know some folks who love blueberries and pineapple so they use those as their “go to” foods.
I have another client who uses almonds and sunflower seeds as her Go To foods.
Your assignment for the next week is to come up with your own “Go To” foods…and then eat them.
Sit down and think about the foods you truly enjoy, and remember we’re talking about real foods here. Nothing processed and no pseudo health foods.
If you’re not used to eating real foods, this may be tougher to come up with because your body’s not used to that type of food anymore, but fret not because it gets easier.
Once you come up with your list, make sure you have them on hand so that you actually eat them. Another good thing about having these Go To foods is that they help prevent you from eating junkie stuff. It prevents the urge to reach for other snack foods, “meeting” foods or convenience store junk.
Simplicity is what makes the most sense and simplicity is what gets the job done.
P.S. – I just got home from a quick trip to Colorado. I had a speaking gig in a town near Vail and had an awesome time. The group I spoke to was warm, welcoming and loved (at least I hope they loved) the information I gave. An important thing for me while traveling is to try and stick to a normal routine – or at least as close as possible. This is where supplements in the form of protein powder and snack bars come in very handy. Snack bars mean if I get hungry, I’m not tempted to stop at a gas station or fast food joint and the protein powder helps keep my appetite in check. I get mine from Prograde Nutrition and think you should too. Check ’em out here –> http://elswellness.getprograde.com