I may seem like an expert on eating healthy and I feel like one – I have read, studied, prayed, and ate right. Why is this one of the hardest things to stick with? I LOVE eating all these foods and when tempted with other things – I am strong! My issue – I don’t always have the right things at the right time to eat. Sometimes my schedule doesn’t allow time to go to the grocery store or the farmer’s market. Sometimes I am just too tired to cook, clean or prepare food. Sometimes I just need to eat and pasta is easy, canned food – easy, frozen dinner – easy…this is my issue. Sometimes having all these wonderful fresh foods costs lots of money, must be eaten quickly and the rest of my family don’t know how to prepare! Eating healthier takes time to buy the right things, prepare them, and to plan better. I love having a fabulous colorful plate that beams with color, vitamins and minerals and just taste like perfection! I need to plan my month, stick to my plan and journal my every bite. I like to track on MyFitnessPal App. I have used Fitday.com as well.
I am going to take my inspiration as shown in the Bible. In Daniel Chapter 1 verses 8-15, Daniel chose to eat his way and not the Kings’. He stood firm on eating for God. He could have eaten all those lavish royal feasts, but he chose to eat simple, fresh food. Daniel Chapter 1 –8 But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way. 9 Now God had caused the official to show favor and compassion to Daniel, 10 but the official told Daniel, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has assigned your[c] food and drink. Why should he see you looking worse than the other young men your age? The king would then have my head because of you.” 11 Daniel then said to the guard whom the chief official had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, 12 “Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13 Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.” 14 So he agreed to this and tested them for ten days. 15 At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food. 16 So the guard took away their choice food and the wine they were to drink and gave them vegetables instead.
The Daniel Plan focuses on the core food groups of healthy carbs, healthy fats, healthy protein, healing spices, drinks, and super foods. And The Daniel Plan gives an easy guideline to use for any meal:
- 50 percent non-starchy veggies (Eat more! You don’t often hear that when you are trying to lose weight and get healthier, but non-starchy vegetables are one food group where you can satisfy your appetite.Vegetables are full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and look great on your plate—and with so few calories and carbohydrate, everyone can enjoy more!)
- 25 percent healthy animal or vegetable proteins Proteins should be approx. 30 – 35 % calories, no more, as you need to balance it with good amounts of vegetables, fruit and healthy fats. Eat only about a palm-sized portion. Protein increases your metabolism. Protein is necessary for muscle repair and growth, it is the building blocks of all the proteins in our bodies, including, skin, bones, enzymes and bloods cells. Without adequate protein, you lose muscle tissue. Increasing lean protein and decreasing refined carbohydrates improves blood sugar, cholesterol and decreases high blood pressure.
- 25 percent healthy starch or whole grains – Make sure to carefully choose WHOLE GRAINS! This can be confusing but look for the whole grain stamp. Eat Gluten free – this is an easy way to ensure that any grains you are eating are whole grain. Do NOT eat processed grains. From the website…http://wholegrainscouncil.org/ Whole grains contain all three parts of the kernel. Refining normally removes the bran and the germ, leaving only the endosperm. Without the bran and germ, about 25% of a grain’s protein is lost, along with at least seventeen key nutrients. Processors add back some vitamins and minerals to enrich refined grains, so refined products still contribute valuable nutrients. However, whole grains are healthier, providing more protein, more fiber and many important vitamins and minerals.
- Side of low-glycemic fruit – OK so I am no expert and have to look all these things up – but it is easy – just google, read, ask and you will find the answers: Berries, cherries, peaches, plums, rhubarb, pears, and apples are optimal fruits; melons, grapes, and kiwifruit are suitable but contain more sugar. Organic frozen berries (from Cascadian Farms) can be used if you make protein shakes. (This is a good way to get your protein in the morning.)
- Drink—water or herbal ice teas (Hot or Cold) Drink at least 8 – 8 oz. each day. I like to drink bottled water so they are typically twice that size so I drink one before I get to work, one before lunch, one after lunch, one before bedtime. I drink water during meals too so that ensures that I get my minimum needed daily. I don’t drink anything else.
- Snacks: Seeds, Nuts (Not peanuts), Beef or Turkey Jerky, Fat Free Yogurt occasionally,
- From “The Daniel Plan – 40 Days to a Healthier You.” By Rick Warren, Daniel Amen, and Mark Hymen.
Get started, stick to it, stay focused, share recipes with friends, have accountability members – kids, spouse, mom, friends; be creative, Plan your work – work your plan!
Pray for me as I pray for you…
Many blessings and healthy eating!