With so many ways to manage your health, sometimes adopting a “healthy lifestyle” can seem overwhelming. If there’s one change you have time to make, it’s this: Shift to a whole-foods, plant-based approach to eating. This is the most impactful way to turn back the clock and extend your health span!
I call it eating Clean & Green.
Before you ask, no – this doesn’t mean only guzzling green juices! By eating Clean & Green, I mean sticking to a plant-based eating guide that’s low in sugar and processed ingredients and high in cell-nourishing nutrition.
I don’t refer to it as a diet as you’ll still enjoy your favorite foods while discovering new and delicious flavors. And don’t forget about your glass of red wine and chunk of chocolate with dinner, if you so choose.
Let’s start with the basics:
Bottom line: Healthy foods, like fresh veggies and local fruit, nourish your organs and supercharge your cells. They love you back! Taking even the smallest step towards a plant-based diet, as organic and local as possible, connects you to a deep, lasting health in a way that can’t happen when you consume mostly processed food.
Reclaim Your Kitchen
Nearly 1/3rd of Americans say they cook just four out of 21 possible meals a week. As bodies on the move, it’s totally understandable, yet, there’s good reason to revisit and reclaim your kitchen. Not only will you save money by eating in, but a study by Johns Hopkins found that you’ll also save calories AND eat less when you do dine out! To start, plan on three simple plant-based mains and sides to cook the following week, like roasted squash, or even salmon over swiss chard.
Give Added Sugars the Axe
In recent years, Americans have finally said how sweet is TOO sweet. The last time we checked, the average American allegedly sucks up anywhere from ¼ to ½ pound a day, when the The American Heart Association advises no more than 6 teaspoons daily. Swap out soda or enhance foods with naturally sweet spices, like cinnamon, ginger or vanilla extract. Still feeling tempted? Repurpose your sugar bowl by emptying it out and packing it with tea bags, dog treats or hair ties!
Think you can make the change, but need some Clean & Green inspiration? Check out my book, “Younger in 8 Weeks”, which is filled with over 70 recipes for wholesome dishes and desserts! Complete with prep tips and food shopping guides, it helps makes the healthy choice an easy one.
– Dr. V