Happy New Year! I know we’re a couple of days late for New Year wishes but better late than never, right? As Elysia mentioned, we’re detoxifying our bodies after a holiday season filled with too many sweets and food that made us feel less than 100%.
This past summer we went to a Vegetarian Festival outside of Chicago where one of the speakers discussed raw foods and health. One thing that she talked about that stuck with me is the definition of food. The dictionary describes it as:
Material, usually of plant or animal origin, that contains or consists of essential body nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals, and is ingested and assimilated by an organism to produce energy, stimulate growth, and maintain life.
She then went on to talk about how many of the items that we consider ‘food’ today, really don’t fit that definition. Do Cheetos really nourish you and provide ‘essential body nutrients’? Sure, they may fill your stomach but they really don’t do anything for you other than leave you ultimately feeling like a sloth with orange fingers. Obviously we don’t eat Cheetos since they contain cheese, but there are a lot of vegan junk food options out there that we’ve enjoyed a little too much lately.
We set out yesterday both planning on doing the Whole Living action plan, but have since decided that it is somewhat poorly written. For instance, these are the ‘six to skip’ for the whole cleanse:
- Processed foods and beverages.
- Added Sugar
Those are easy enough. Stay to the outside of the grocery store when shopping and you’ve missed most of the processed foods. Gluten will be a challenge but we are skipping it. The above six aren’t what we found confusing. In the magazine itself, it says that we should eat ‘fruits, vegetables, and plant-based fats, including nuts, seeds, and oils’ in week one and ‘add seafood, beans and lentils, and organic soy’ back in week two. However, under week one snacks and in some recipes they include beans. Because of this and other questionable items we have decided to modify the detox a bit. We’ll still leave out the ‘six to skip’ but will be eating beans this week. Other than that, we’re going to follow it unless other things are confusing. Ultimately the most important thing for me is to eat real, not processed foods that will nourish our bodies and start 2012 off the right way!
Whether you’re following a detox, dieting, or just trying to eat healthier, there is one thing that is in abundance in all plans; vegetables! So have a salad for lunch and try new veggies that you haven’t before (you never know what you’ll like). The following isn’t a recipe, per se, because you can sub whichever vegetables you like, but here’s some inspiration for starting the year off right:
- 1 Portabella Mushroom
- 2 mini bell peppers
- 1/4 red onion
- 1 tomato
- 1 Tablespoon Nutritional Yeast
- Garlic Salt, to taste
- Pepper, to taste
- 2 cups dark, leafy greens (I use Mache and Spinach)
- 1/4 medium avocado, sliced
- 1 Tablespoon raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
- drizzle of truffle oil (or other oil)
– Preheat oven to 400F.
– Cut the mushroom, peppers, onion and tomato into slices. Then layer them in a small baking dish with the mushroom on the bottom followed by a sprinkle of nutritional yeast/garlic salt, then the peppers and onions, more nutritional yeast, tomato slices and another sprinkle of nutritional yeast/garlic salt.
– Cook until the mushrooms are desired doneness (about 35-40 minutes).
– In a large bowl or plate add the greens, pepitas, cooked veggies and avocado.
– Drizzle with truffle oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste.
I like to use a combination of cooked and raw veggies in my salads to change things up a bit, but feel free to figure out what you like and sub in as many veggies as you want!
Are you doing a 2012 Detox or just trying to eat healthier?