And now that I have done it, I have to say: I can’t think of anything better I could have done to jump-start my getting back to healthy habits! There is no better way to learn new things than experiencing them yourself. Here’s what I’ve learned:
1. Healthy food is the best ingredient in your beauty regimen: my skin has cleared and evened out more thanks to green smoothies than it ever did by putting more time and effort (and money!) into my beauty routine.
2. Once you get used to it, it’s super-fast. Just keep your fridge stocked with greens and fresh fruit, and toss whatever sounds good in your blender. Here are a few of my favorite smoothies from the past month:
3. There is no replacement for fresh fruits and veggies, but it’s good to have a superfood blend at home in case you find yourself suddenly out of greens. Amazing Grass makes a good one, and their Kids Superfood Powder in Ourageous Chocolate makes a great addition to your kids’s breakfast (or yours) and is sooo delicious!
4. Your blender is, after your fridge and stove/oven, the most valuable kitchen appliance you have. A good blender will allow you to make all kinds of smoothies, frozen drinks, hummus, salsa, creamy soups… It can really help you improve your nutrition in some delicious ways.
I went through so many blenders in the past few years, I have lost count; finally I special-ordered an old model of Osterizer that, though not as pretty as the shiny black-and-chrome blender that crapped out on me 3 times before the guarantee even ran out, doesn’t make me want to throw it out the window on a regular basis. Until I can afford this baby or even better, this one, it’ll do just fine.
5. Some vegetables might not agree with you. I found that my sensitive stomach seemed to rebel when I added cruciferous veggies to my smoothies, so I stirred clear of raw kale and bok choi after that. But son’t let a little letdown discourage you! Keep trying, keep tweaking, keep experimenting. The wins will be many more than the losses, I promise.
6. Healthy eating has some unexpected (but very welcome) benefits: my family has a history of all kinds of digestive problems (both my mother and her sister suffer from hiatal hernias, acid reflux and colitis, and my grandma suffered from diverticulitis) despite the fact that I seemed to be headed down that road as well, after a month of green smoothies my digestive problems have virtually disappeared.
And the best lesson of all for someone like myself, someone who has struggled with yo-yo dieting for many years: a healthy meal with whole foods is NEVER wasted. Yo-yo dieters tend to struggle with the idea that something is better than nothing. For us, it’s very much black-or-white: there are good days and bad days, and a good day can easily turn into a bad one by a little indulgence, but a bad day cannot be fixed, so you might as well give in and start fresh tomorrow.
WHAT A LOAD OF CRAP.
Small steps do matter. Any step in the right direction counts as progress.
I noticed that the few times I skipped my smoothie in the morning I didn’t have as much energy, and I found myself cravings sweets and carbs. Those were the two times that I ended up having a Starbucks drink, and more carbs than I care to recall.
So here’s a dope-slap to the yo-yo dieter who is hiding somewhere inside of me: a good day cannot be ruined by having a bit of ice cream, or some pasta. A bad day can still be fixed up by drinking lots of water and making better choices. And while we are at it, stop categorizing days based on what you eat, you silly cow.
So there. No that we got that out of the way, let’s move on. What’s next? I’m thinking of tackling Angie’s 30-Day Challenge. Many of the habits are something I used to do and just need to get back into, but if it’s something new to you, she does have lots of useful info in her daily videos!
Who wants to do it with me?