Several years ago, I found myself deep in panic attacks and anxiety had a tight grip on my life. I was desperate for answers and a way out! It was a long journey with lots of facets, but one of the big pieces of this journey for me to get control of my life was to gain a healthy relationship with food.
I found that one of the many underlying factors in my anxiety issues was a condition called Hashimoto’s Disease. The doctors at the clinic immediately put me on a strict elimination diet that rocked my world. This diet led me on a journey that I’m incredibly thankful for. For a month, I eliminated all sugar, grains, dairy, gluten…. basically I only ate fresh meat, vegetables and fruit! Sounds easy, right?
For me it was NOT an easy road, but I will say that changing the way I looked at food changed my life! Changing my diet along with a very low dose of natural thyroid medication, has almost totally reversed my Hashimoto’s. I also see significant improvement in my anxiety levels when I am fueling my body with healthy food.
I don’t at all want to lead you to believe that I eat exactly what I should ALL the time, because I DO NOT! I strive to eat more natural foods and less processed and I (like many of you) go through seasons when I do this well and seasons where I completely fail!
My goal is not perfection, my goal is feeling healthy and finding a balance that works for me.
So what does this look like in my every day world?
Here’s few tweaks that made a big difference for us:
- Buy the majority of your groceries from the outer edges of the store.
- I only venture to the middle of the store for specific staple items on my list. I don’t wander all the middle aisles of the store, that is where the bad stuff lives and I don’t want to be tempted!
- Don’t keep soda or sugary beverages at home.
- If we are thirsty, this change forces us to drink more water. We often keep a lemon or berries close so we can cut it up and add in to our water as well.
- Rethink traditions
- For me, I had to rethink what meals had always looked like in my mind. Breakfast doesn’t have to be cereal, pancakes or muffins, could it be meat and veggies from the night before? Instead of sandwiches at lunch, what about a pile of protein and veggies with a yummy homemade sauce? Dinner is often roasted veggies, grilled meat and sliced up fruit, simple as that!
- Aim for quick & healthy
- I don’t always LOVE the process of shopping, preparing and cooking, so I seek out ways to make this process simpler and quicker. I use a wonderful meal planning tool called Plan to Eat, which allows me to pull recipes from anywhere quickly into my account, drag and drop them to my weekly calendar and it automatically generates a shopping list I can use on my phone! I am also loving my Instant Pot which makes cooking dinner and cleaning a breeze.
As I embarked on this journey, I found myself seeking out resources on how to eat this way and not feel deprived or unsatisfied. I have benefited greatly from online resources & books on how to incorporate healthy eating into my daily routines.
Getting dinner on the table each night also doesn’t happen without a good plan.
Let me share my secret with you… I LOVE the Meal Planning tool called Plan to Eat!
Let me tell you why…
- Unlike other meal planning programs, I can use all my own recipes!
- I get most of my recipes online and I can import them into my PTE recipe book with a simple click of a button.
- I can easily drag them into my PTE calendar for my weekly meal plan.
- PTE automatically generates a shopping list that I can access on my phone.
It has taken all the hard part out of meal planning for me and it’s so easy!
Eating Healthier has been a journey for me. There are a couple of things I did in the past few years that helped me have a healthier relationship for food.
One good way to do a reset is with a Whole 30, I have done a few versions of this over the years. Each time, I am reminded how good REAL food is. I don’t know that it’s completely sustainable to eat like this forever, but it serves as a good way to discover how your body reacts to food. As well as to cut your cravings for sugar and processed foods. Every time I do this I’m amazed at my true love for REAL food!
Here’s some resources to get you started on a Whole30…
Melissa Joulwan’s Well Fed website is so valuable for those wanting to begin the “clean eating/real food” journey.
Here’s a few of my favorite posts and her books are excellent resources!
Another thing I experimented with this fall with Trim Healthy Mama. There is a learning curve for sure, but my family has enjoyed the food & overall I like the way I feel eating this way. Verdict is still out for me on whether I can totally make the THM switch permanently, but might be worth looking into if you are looking to eat healthier in the new year!
Here’s some resources to get you started with Trim Healthy Mama.
For me, it has been a hard journey with lots of trial and error, lots of failure days, but overall totally worth it to gain a healthier relationship with food that serves me and my family well!
Do you have some favorite resources for healthy eating? Please join the conversation by commenting below:
Founder of The Praying Mom
This website was birthed out of Christy's passion to see women become intentional in their lives. She is passionate about helping moms discover their purpose in their homes, churches, communities & world!