Spring Cleaning the Pantry and Refrigerator

Today I want to share with you Spring Cleaning your Pantry and Refrigerator.  Millions of people are overweight and dieting.  Many people have health problems such as obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.  Statistics show that for many Americans genetics only plays a 10% role, exercise a 10% role and what you eat plays an 80% role in your health and shape.  This is good news.    How many foods in your kitchen are over-processed especially with white flour and sugar?  Do they have preservatives?  Artificial sugars?  Saturated fats or trans fats?  Many snacks and processed foods are calorie dense foods containing little nutritional value.  So take an inventory of your pantry and refrigerator.  Great now let’s do a Spring Cleaning and talk about the rules of clean eating.  This isn’t about another diet or even depriving yourself.  It is a lifestyle change in learning to eat healthy and clean.  It involves planning healthy meals for the week, but first you must have healthy options.  Whenever I can, I buy and eat local foods.  Here is what I keep in my kitchen:

Complex Carbs or Whole Grains:  brown rice, wheat germ, quinoa, oat bran, and spelt.

Cereals:  Oatmeal, Muesli,  and Kashi.

Dairy:  Rice Milk, Lite chocolate soy milk, Goat Cheese, and Stoneyfield organic Yogurt (Plain)

Fresh Fruits:  Bananas, Apples, Pears, Blueberries, oranges, Frozen mangos and dried fruits which are great for cereal in winter months.

Veggies:  Buy the color of the rainbow!  Lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers, peppers, and whatever is in season!  I love Kale, Swiss Chard, and eggplant.  Sweet potatoes or yams are a staple in my kitchen.

Beans:  Soy, lentil, chickpeas, black beans and white beans.

Lean Proteins:  Soy burgers, tofu, tempeh, turkey, chicken, fish, pork, venison and buffalo meat from a local farm.

Nuts or Nut Butters:  I always have Tahini and almond butter on hand.  I also have pumpkin seeds, almonds, walnuts and pecans on hand.  Not only are these a good source of protein, but they are a great garnish to many meals.

Condiments:  Mustards, horseradish, vinegars, olive oil, salsas, lime and lemon juice……a large variety of good herb seasonings.  It is all about flavor so spice up your meals.

If you plan on the weekends and make your meals and healthy snacks ahead of time, you will avoid the unhealthy snacks.  You know, the cake, cookies or candy bowl at the office that tempts you every time you walk by.  I always carry dried mangos or other dried fruit with no sugar added, almonds or other nuts, apples , almond butter and cut up veggies.  That way, when I need a snack, I have healthy options.  You will make mistakes.  It is how you deal with those mistakes that will determine your success.  Have compassion for yourself!  Enjoy the journey and remember, it begins with one habit at a time!

 

New Year + New Resolutions = New Me?

By Lauren Ebbecke ©2013

We reflect back on 2012 as the New Year begins and thus, we create our resolutions.  “I will quit smoking”, “I will lose weight”, “I will exercise 4-5 days a week”, “I will eat healthier”, “I will get more sleep”, “I will not work too much”, “I will meditate every day” and on the resolutions go.  We are enthusiastic and have good intentions to follow them and yet, many of us will fail.  In fact, the research shows that only 10% will be successful.

Why?  Because our resolutions do not deeply connect with our inner souls!  Many people equate resolutions with making a to do list that is short lived. If these resolutions do not align with our inner soul, then we won’t keep doing them.

Resolutions are like frosting on a cake.  They only address the superficial “want” without touching the heartfelt center.  Generally, we state something like I will DO exercise 5 times a week so I can have a thinner body and look good, and then I will BE confident.  It is a short term to do list.

To be more successful in creating lasting, positive changes in your is the BE-DO-HAVE model.  By looking at the model from a place of BE first, gives us a deeper meaning and answers the “why”.  This creates sustainable, lasting positive behaviors after the newness has worn off.

Try A NEW New Year’s Ritual

There are a number of alternative approaches to marking the beginning of the New Year. Here are a few:

So why not try a new ritual this year and choose a Word of the Year?   Be sure to set aside some quiet time perhaps with candles and soft lighting.  Mindfully sit with the questions in this guide and then answer them.  I usually schedule an hour or so without any interruptions.

Once you’ve chosen your word, be present with it in your heart and mind throughout the year. Let it teach you to take action toward your dream for 2013.

I’d love hear about your successes and discoveries!   Please feel free to post a comment below!

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