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I thought long and hard about the title for this article.  It’s true, you know, that you can maintain your ideal weight and not go on a fad diet.  My family is living proof of this.  My husband and I made some simple changes to our diets and we have maintained our ideal weights for years.  Here is how you can do it too:

  1. Eat Whole Foods, not Processed Foods

What’s the difference?  Whole foods are foods that you eat in their natural state that have not been processed.  The average processed food has 25 ingredients or more.  The average whole food has one.  By cutting down on additives and preservatives, you will nourish your body, cut calories and reduce toxins that enter your body.  For example, if you buy a chicken nugget at the grocery store, it may contain 25 or more ingredients.  If you make a chicken nugget at home, you can use organic chicken and make a coating with 4 or 5 additional ingredients.  There is no comparison in nutritional value and fat/calorie intake.  The other golden rule here is to limit how often you eat out.  That is very hard!  Most restaurants, especially fast food restaurants, serve processed foods or foods high in the wrong fats.  As you are just learning how to eat right, stay home and cook for yourself.  Keep leftovers to take to work the next day for lunch.  You will save money, lose weight, and feel better.

  1. Buy Grass-Fed, Organic Meat

Meat that you buy in the grocery store carries more toxins than you might think.  Most beef and chicken is raised in unhealthy conditions with animals that are treated cruelly and that are fed antibiotics and growth hormones to make them grow faster.  In short, it is bad for your body.  Buy your meat from a local farmer who raises grass-fed beef, pastured pork, wild caught fish or organic chicken.  The meat tastes better, is fresher, and will nourish your body, not fill your body with toxins.

  1. Eat Fewer Grains

In a society that lives on bread and pasta, this will be hard to do but is essential if you want to maintain your ideal body weight.  Bread and pasta are essentially carbohydrates.  They will mess with the sugar balance in your body and will make you gain weight, feel bloated, and can cause many other symptoms including migraines, gluten intolerance, IBS, body aches and pains and more.  It is essential to limit grains if you want to maintain your ideal body weight.  What can you eat instead?  Continue reading!  If you must eat bread, try sprouted grain bread.  Try gluten-free pasta every other time you eat pasta and introduce yourself to quinoa – a healthy grain.  When you make rice, make it plain and add butter.  The boxes of rice that come with flavor packages would qualify as a processed food.  These are not good for you.

  1. Eat Vegetables Every Day

For most people, vegetables are good.  When in doubt of what to eat, try a vegetable.  Now, this idea can cause problems for those with IBS.  For more information on this topic, look up the FODMAPS diet.  For those of you without IBS, read on!  Fresh, organic vegetables are the best thing to eat.  Shop at local farmer’s markets in your area and connect with local farmers to find them.  We grow our own garden in the summer and also purchase a farm share from a local farmer.  Our house is full of fresh vegetables!  We also buy root vegetables all winter, like carrots, potatoes, leeks, onions, beets, and more in the winter.  They make great soups!

  1. Make Soup Stock

One of the most nutritious foods you can make is your own soup stock.  I make mine by boiling down the bones of organic chickens and beef.  Be sure to buy organic meats and save the bones.  We ate an organic turkey for Thanksgiving and I saved the bones.  After Thanksgiving, I put the bones in the crock pot for 24 hours with a little water and made a super soup stock!  I freeze what I’m not going to use right away for later use.  Soups are great to make when you have leftover meat and veggies.  Put lots of nutrients into your soup.  Some of the things I’ve used in soups are cooked hamburger and other organic meats, zucchini, white potatoes, sweet potatoes, sea vegetables – kelp or dulse, kale, rice, red carrots, orange carrots, tomatoes, onions, peppers, you name it!  Make your soup full of the things you like!

  1. Shop Right

When you go to the supermarket, shop in the produce aisle and the organic aisle only.  That’s right!  If you want to maintain your ideal weight, don’t shop in the middle of the grocery store – unless you’re buying paper towels and toilet paper.  I am serious!  The food in the middle aisles is all processed food.  You don’t need it!  If you can’t buy your vegetables at an outdoor, local, organic market, then buy organic at your grocery store.  Also, find the local health food store in your area and get to know the owners.  Talk to them about healthy foods and their inventory.  Experiment and try things!  You will find a whole new way of eating.

  1. Eat Fat

That’s right, I said EAT FAT!  Just eat the right fat!  Your body needs fat to be healthy and maintain homeostasis.  You need good fat to lose weight.  You do not need hydrogenated fats, though, and most all fast food and processed food is full of hydrogenated oils and fats.  Don’t eat it!  Eat and use extra virgin coconut oil and olive oil.  It will save your life!  And, remember that oil should change form if it gets hot and cold.  If your oil stays the same no matter where you put it, then it’s hydrogenated and is bad for you.  Coconut oil will become liquid when it’s warm and solid when it’s cool.  Nuts and seeds also provide good fats (but must be eaten in moderation) as well as avacado.

  1. Eat Organic Eggs

If you’re buying eggs at the grocery store, then they are contributing to your weight gain.  The only eggs you should ever eat are those that are free range and organic.  We gave up trying to buy eggs a few months ago and bought chickens instead.  Each day, I go out to the coop and collect eggs.  There’s nothing better than an egg that’s still warm cracked into the frying pan!  You will learn what fresh eggs taste like when you buy them straight from a farmer!

  1. Find Super Fruits to Eat

There are some super fruits that you can eat, with blueberries being at the top of my list.  Of course, organic is best in all cases.  It would not hurt to eat a ½ cup of blueberries every single day.  They are good for you!  Eat other fruits are you can tolerate but be aware that fruit also contains sugar, even though it’s a more natural sugar.  Unlimited fruit consumption will make you gain weight.  Be careful.

  1. Invest in YOU

Think before you put things in your mouth!  Everything that you eat is digested and turned into your body’s fuel.  If you don’t give your body nourishing foods, you will get heavier, sicker, and will probably not be very happy.  You are worth the time and investment to eat well, learn about nourishing your body and reflecting on what you learn.  Journal what you eat and make positive changes over time.  You will never need a fad diet again!
Shirley Wright, LMT, RMT

Shirley Wright, LMT, RMT

Licensed Massage Therapist and Reiki Master Trainer at Healing Center of Maine
My mission is to help people manage pain and injury, reduce stress, and promote healing.

Contact me today!
Shirley Wright, LMT, RMT

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