So you’ve read some books, maybe browsed a few magazines and googled a few topics and you’re ready to make a lifestyle change. But now WHAT?! How do you start? Where do you begin? Hopefully this will help you out!
Positive Changes Start Now Approach
Grab a trash bag because your first step involves some cleaning! It’s time to toss out all the processed, chemically enhanced food that is in the house. This is also your first step in reading labels. Look through all your food items carefully. Read the labels and check out the ingredients. Healthy items stay, the rest gets tossed. (If you are looking for a slower approach check it out here)
Dinner – Now that you have a clean slate it’s time to fill your house with some nutritious and healthy food. If you’re not a planner then start small and try to come up with at least a weeks worth of dinners – breakfast, lunches and snacks are the easiest but dinner usually requires some prepping. If you are a planner then you are going to like this! Browse through some magazines or check out some blogs and take note of the recipes that look interesting to you. Make a list of the ingredients needed for your nightly dinners (Sweet Potato Quinoa Burgers, Italian Style Lentil Loaf, Creamy Garlic Pasta with Broccoli and Crispy Fried Rice are some good places to start) – this is the start of your grocery list. Now let’s add some of the other items you will need.
Breakfast – Start with the basics – cereal (or oatmeal, like Slow Cooker Steel Cut Oats) with fruit and non dairy milk (for a list of healthy cereals check out Building a Healthy Pantry). A fruit smoothie, a slice of whole wheat toast with a nut butter spread or even some Banana Pancakes are a tasty way to start the day. Keep it simple and quick in the beginning so you don’t get overwhelmed.
Lunch – If you’re a veggie lover then stock up on your favorites! A fresh veggie salad is an excellent lunch choice. Sprinkle with some extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar or try our favorite Creamy Vinaigrette Dressing for the perfect salad topping. If you’re not big on salads then try some of our other lunchtime favorites – Spicy Peanut Pasta, Cheesy Pizza Donuts, Creamy Potato Onion Soup, Crunchy Burger Patties or Gluten and Grain Free Pizza.
Snacks – Again, stick to the basics at first and then branch out. Grab some of your favorite nuts and seeds – almonds, walnuts, pecans, sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Measure out a single serving of each and toss them in some snack bags for easy grab and go servings. Pair your nuts and seeds with some carrots, broccoli, cauliflower or celery – our California Dip is perfect for dunking your veggies in. Apples, bananas and grapes are easy fruits to have for snacks or try some Crispy Sesame Green Bean Fries, Pizza Baked Chickpeas or Blueberry Granola Bars.
Extras – Often times when people start out on a healthy lifestyle change they stock up on protein powders, supplements and other ‘healthy’ essentials. While protein powder and supplements are perfectly fine it’s best to ease your way into them before shelling out a lot of money for items you might not like or need.
If you’re worry about getting enough vitamins and minerals each day taking a multivitamin can help put your mind at ease. Although it’s best to get your daily requirement through healthy foods (and entirely possible as well), we know that not everyone can eat a varied diet and sometimes a vitamin is necessary. We recommend checking out Deva Multivitamin One A Day. This vitamin is ideal for those on a vegan or vegetarian diet. For those that are on a vegan diet please make sure you are getting adequate amounts of B12 and vitamin D. The daily multivitamin mentioned above will fulfill your daily requirement or you can take separate supplements to get the recommended amount.
For all the other ‘extras’ that you might need check out Building A Healthy Pantry. There you can find recommendations for flour, canned goods, oils, etc that are good to have on hand when preparing healthy meals.
And don’t forget the WATER! When you’re starting out, drinking water will really help to flush your system and keep you hydrated. Herbal teas or sparkling mineral water are also excellent beverage choices. Organic coffee sweetened with a healthy sweetener or Homemade Coffee Creamer is perfectly fine on a limited basis.
Now that you’ve stocked up on good, wholesome healthy food it’s time to figure out how it all works together to help you. Your goal should be 3-4 sensible sized meals daily. Each meal should be based around non starchy vegetables such as lettuce, greens, carrots, tomatoes, broccoli, cabbage, etc. Include a serving of whole grains or starchy vegetables, a serving of fruit and a serving of legumes, nuts or seeds. You should feel satisfied after each meal, not stuffed. By the time your next meal comes around you should be hungry. If not, decrease your portion size next time.
Naked eating is a lifestyle change and it takes time to get used to this new way of life. The more you eat naked, the easier it becomes. This is why for the first week or so I recommend writing down your daily meals so that you can easily pull out the necessary items at the appropriate times. Take a few minutes the night before and jot down what you will be having for breakfast and lunch. If you are away from the house during these times you will want to pack your meals so that you’ll have everything with you.
If you currently have an exercise program that you follow then you are already a step ahead! Keep up the good work!
If you haven’t yet added in an exercise routine, now is a great time to start. For most people walking is a great way to start incorporating exercise into your daily routine. Invest in a good pair of walking shoes and head outside (or inside if you have access to a treadmill). Start with walking half a mile and gradually increase your pace and distance as you gain muscle and energy. Once you’ve gotten a steady exercise routine worked into your daily lifestyle you can branch out by adding weights, cardio classes and sports activities!
Some people will do a cheat meal once a week or once a month. This is completely up to you. For me personally if I’m craving something that isn’t healthy I try to find a way to make a tasty, healthy version.
YOU CAN DO IT:
Remember that naked eating isn’t a diet – don’t worry if you miss a meal, eat a candy bar or slip up. Put the past behind you and start again – RIGHT AWAY, no need to wait for tomorrow. As you become more comfortable reading labels and making meals you’ll notice how quick meal preparation becomes. You do have to put some time and enegry into getting started, but soon you’ll be so accustomed to your new lifestyle that you’ll wonder how you lived any other way!
As ALWAYS check with your doctor before starting any exercise or nutrition program!
Are there any tips or tricks that you learned along that way that helped you when starting out? Please share them with us and help out others that are just starting on this awesome adventure and lifestyle!