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Skip the diet and focus on nutrition

January 13, 2019

To many of us, the word diet means a drastic change in the way we eat for a short period of time. While there is a time and a place for short-term diet plans, I prefer to focus on long-term, gradual changes in our daily diet and lifestyle. I’ve found that the best way to do this is not to focus on what foods we eliminate, but rather to focus on consuming more nutrition-rich foods.

Personally, I follow and typically suggest a plant-based diet. I understand that, for a multitude of reasons, a totally plant-based diet can be difficult to follow, and even though it’s the diet that works best for me, it may not work for everyone. By shifting our focus to finding ways to add nutrition to our meals, we typically tend to eat more nutrition-packed leafy greens, vegetables and fruits. These nutrition-rich foods, especially leafy greens, usually make us feel satiated quicker during meals due to their higher fiber content.

Start by adding a handful of baby spinach to your morning smoothie, or if you’re in a hurry, add a scoop of a powdered green food supplement to your favorite protein powder. For lunch, grab a big salad or a wrap. Try using garbanzo beans for your protein source. Beans add even more vitamins, minerals and fiber. Skip the heavy dressing or sauce and opt for a vinaigrette or for an even lower calorie dressing use a drizzle of balsamic vinegar or a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Add a handful of fresh baby kale to soups or stir fry dishes for dinner and always include a steamed vegetable side.

When we focus on getting more nutrition in our meals, we end up having less room for higher calorie foods and with some time that can make a big difference in our waistlines, but more importantly, in our overall health.

Travis Lemon is a certified herbalist and co-owner of Tulsi at The Market in Huntington. He has worked in the natural health and wellness industry for over 14 years. He can be contacted at travislemonmh@gmail.com.

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