I started off with a candida diet – now this is a very extreme diet and is only for the most determined of you. But what happened to my body was so incredible that it has changed the way I eat, and the way I live. I don’t stick to a candida diet these days but I’ve learned just how much control your food has over your body and I have found a passion for discovering new and different things about nutrition.
Most of what I thought I knew about food was wrong. Most of what doctors are taught is limited and nutrition is highly underrated in their education. I’ve grown to believe that almost everything my body throws at me is a result of nutrition or can be helped with food.
I personally changed the way I eat because I felt ill, but the side effects of what I ate made me drop three dress sizes and made my skin glow. After a year, I was the slim one in my group of friends. Now they come to me for advice on how to feel great and look even better.
I’m going to do a series of articles with changes, one at a time, that you can do to gradually build a more nutritious diet and become the motivated, healthy-looking person you want to be. My hope is that you’ll find in one or more of these changes, something that affects your vitality and your passion for life and food. And maybe you’ll find yourself wanting to gradually make more changes to improve what you put into your body.
But before we make any changes, here are some fantastic secrets that I have picked up over the last few years that have made me feel more alive and more beautiful going into my thirties than I have for nearly a decade:
- As with everything in life, the 80/20 rule applies. If you aim to eat nutritious, healthy food 80% of the time, it practically doesn’t matter what you throw at it the other 20% of the time because your body will have built up the resources to cope with it. So treat yourself, don’t feel guilty eating/drinking what you like, just refuel your body with nutrients and you’ll still do just great.
- For the most part multi-vitamins, supplements and foods “enriched” with vitamins and minerals are useless. Your body can only process 8% – 15% of the vitamins these supposedly provide, the rest is mainly chemicals. 99% of Vitamin C supplements in today’s market are made purely from corn syrup which is even more processed than white sugar! By eating real oranges or orange juice, you get the phytochemicals you need to really get the benefits of Vitamin C. Don’t try to get your nutrients from anything other than real food!
- There is sugar in nearly everything. Fruits contain fructose, milk contains lactose, virtually all processed food contains sugars (even crisps), even cigarettes have sugar thrown in to make them more addictive. Sugar is a drug and it affects your blood sugar levels. I’ll go into detail on this in some later article but bear in mind for now, there is more sugar in your diet than you’ll ever know.
- Diet drinks are dangerous and don’t work! Check your ingredients – most diet drinks contain aspartame and a quick Google search will fill you in on the dangers of this highly dubious, accidentally created sweetener. It should not be legal, were it not for some dodgy politics which sounds as if it should’ve been a movie script. And studies have proven time and again that most of the time, you gain more weight choosing diet over full fat. Soda is bad full stop, but don’t go giving yourself tumours and gaining weight for the sake of choosing the “Lite” option. Please.
- Learn to love water. We don’t drink enough (I certainly still don’t) and there are healing powers of water that we can’t imagine. Check out http://www.watercure.com/wondersofwater.html
- You are what you eat. The old expression couldn’t be closer to the truth. Your body is constantly regenerating cells, every seven years all the cells you have are different to those you had seven years before. And your body uses whatever it can get from the food you take in in order to make these cells. As you become more aware of what is in the food you eat, you’ll start to think twice about whether that’s what you want your cells to be made from!
- It’s all in the farming. Yes, I know there’s a massive trend towards locally-produced, grass-fed and organic foods. And what does it matter? Organic food is chemical-free inside and out, the very soil it is grown in (or the grass it eats is grown in), has to be free of chemicals. What goes into your food, goes into you. I will cover organic food in a later article, but an excellent standard in the UK is the Soil Association certification. Maybe you can’t afford to eat all organic food, that’s not surprising. But here is a list of the most important foods that should be eaten organic (so you can switch a little at a time as you can afford to):
- Meat – although meat muscle is not so bad, the fat stores all the toxins the animal has eaten so that you end up with as many as 10 different pesticides in your meat. Wherever possible, find out as much as you can about your meat.
- Milk – this works in the same way as meat and it’s worrying that so many pesticides are typically found in a food that is such a staple for young children.
- Celery – there’s no protective skin on this vegetable, so any pesticide residue will just be hanging out there waiting for you to munch away
- Peaches (some have up to 62 different pesticides!), Strawberries, Apples, Pears, Blueberries and Grapes
- Spinach, Kale and Leafy Greens
- Potatoes, Bell Peppers and Carrots
Keep this tips in mind as you go forward – there’s no mad rush to change everything in your diet – most lifelong changes come as small alterations to your routine, a little at a time. Come back again to find out what little changes you can make that will have a big impact on your life.
I wish you good luck and vitality!