So much of the time when it comes to food we’re hearing about the negative side of it.
This can really make you feel like it’s not worth trying to eat well, so I thought I’d try to help change that by sharing my own outlook on food and how I’ve developed what I like to call “positive nutrition”.
1-Look at the basic nutrition
Teach yourself very basic nutrition so that you can view how a food can benefit you. This will help reinforce a better relationship with your food and help you realise the importance of what the food you’re going to eat can do for you. A simple example is to learn that all vitamins except B and C are fat soluble, so eating a little fat with certain foods will help you absorb more nutrients, so it’s more than ok to go ahead and have some hummus with those carrot sticks!
2-Use positive words
“I should eat these berries because of their benefits” VS “I shouldn’t have eaten that”
“It’s fine to eat this almond butter because of the good fats, calcium and vitamin E” VS “oh my goodness, think about how much fat is in that almond butter”
Focus on why you should eat a food rather than the other way round, this is such an easy way to change your outlook almost instantly, because if you’re like me the second I tell myself I can’t have it, that’s when I’ll want it most!
3-Nourish, not punish
Pleasure and enjoyment as well as good nutrition should be what you get from your daily meals rather than deprivation and a sense that you should then punish yourself for having that slice of cake.
This is where my love for choosing healthier ingredients comes in because it quite literally means I can have my cake and eat it too!
I refuse to live off of only kale salads, I love to sneak veg and other healthy ingredients into my recipes (e.g secret bean blondies or squash flapjacks or kale crepes) whenever possible so that I’m getting some good nourishment in there but not compromising on flavour or a feeling that I’m depriving myself.
I can take all the usual ingredients for porridge, add some cacao powder and shape it into brownies which automatically makes me feel like I’m having something special.
My favourite swaps:
– wholegrain flour instead of white flour (spelt & buckwheat are great options)
– fruit such as mashed banana, berries, lemon/orange zest, apple puree to replace some sugar
– mashed banana/avocado/nut butter to replace oil
– cinnamon and other spices for sweetness and flavour
– sneak veg into recipes to bulk it out, pumpkin/squash and beans work well
– frozen chopped banana blended until smooth to replace icecream
Healthy looks different on everyone
Each person has different dietary/energy requirements which change constantly, so just because your friend isn’t having the higher carb option doesn’t mean you have to feel like you can’t have it. If you know you need to refuel your body then go ahead. A certain eating plan may work wonders for one person but make life miserable for another, choose what’s right for you.
So whatever your favourite type of food is, it doesn’t matter, but ensure you’re enjoying it and that it bring you benefits. Try to choose the best options available and sneak goodness in wherever you can.
Tell me in the comments below how you’ve developed a more positive relationship with nutrition and food