As we go through our journey to become healthy the majority of our “work” starts in the kitchen. What sort of habits do you have when it comes to your kitchen space and eating? Some of these habits might be inherited family habits, some might be “bad” habits picked up through years of living alone, some might be “good” habits that are actually harming your health. Whatever the habits are it’s time to take a hard look at if your kitchen is setting you up for success or failure.
Keep only what you can eat in your kitchen!
Step one in allowing your kitchen to better serve your health is to only allow the foods in your house that serve you. That doesn’t mean you can’t have cookies or whatever you crave, just upgrade them to those without fortified flour, vegetable oils, or other unnecessary additives. Sure, there’s a few things you’ll miss at first, because there’s no exact substitute for things like ketchup, but even the most nightshade-addicted kids will happily accept ranch or honey mustard, for example. You can make the changes slowly, and pick your battles. You don’t have to rip the bandaid off unless that’s just how you roll. Replace things as you finish them with the new, upgraded version, or just eliminate them completely if they don’t fit your new vision for your health. The most important thing is to create clearly defined goals for each step and follow through on your commitment!
Clean out that supplement cabinet
This may or may not be in your kitchen but either way it’s a great time to clean it out. The Naturally Connected Life system advocates for minimal supplement use in the long run. We are hoping that you will get all your needed nutrients from whole organic foods. There are so many supplements that even we have taken/recommended over the years and it’s time to realize that the supplement industry is just Big Pharma Junior. Also, MOST traditional “medicines” that were not food were only taken as short term remedies. If you have to take the supplement everyday for the rest of your life is it really any different from a prescription drug? We understand that in the beginning some supplements are necessary and also some things are first aid/sick meds such as garlic, oregano oil, and colloidal silver (all things we keep on hand, “just in case”). But, we are sure that you have between 5 and 100 different supplements that you aren’t taking anymore and will never take again! Toss them!
Plan your meals ahead of time
Meal planning is especially life saving in our modern times. We are all busy and have too many things on our mind to have to figure out dinner on the go as your child (or spouse) yells at you in hunger. One of the main reasons fast food has become so popular is for the convenience and cheap price. With just a little planning though you can prevent that last minute decision to drive through or take-out something. Make it a weekly ritual to plan a week’s worth of meals on Sunday (or any day of your choosing), that can include a well-planned outing to a restaurant offering quality ingredients. Our wonderful list of recipes can really help you with this, from this list you can easily make a shopping list and move on to the next step, meal prep!
Prep your meals ahead of time
Once you plan those meals out the easiest thing to do is to plan a specific day to prep multiple meals for the week. If that means making several different meals at once and then reheating throughout the week, great! If you eat lunch at work or you have to make meals for a spouse to eat at work it’s always great to prepare as much as you can ahead of time. Rushed weekday mornings are no time to try and make good decisions about a healthy lunch. Always make more than you’ll need for a meal, because who doesn’t love the convenience of leftovers?
Keep the right kind of snacks around
No one likes a “hangry” person. Eating every 2-4 hours is necessary for many people to maintain their blood sugar and prevent cortisol spikes. Keep snacks that are healthy like gelatin gummies, fruit, boiled eggs, beef jerky or organic lunch meats, cheese, and rice or sourdough crackers around and easily accessible. Smoothies are a quick and easy way to get in a midday snack, too, using some combination of whole milk, juice, fruits, honey and collagen protein. To save time, you can cut up all the fruit beforehand and add that to your meal prep for the week in pre-portioned containers. Easy noshing will keep up your momentum and save you from that crappy slice of pizza.
Be prepared for meal storage
In order to make the above steps optimal it’s important to be prepared with all the right storage materials. 100 plastic tupperwares with no matching lids are not serving anyone, literally and figuratively. We of course advocate for sustainable storage solutions such as silicone stasher bags, stainless steel or glass containers with lids. We love everything in this shop! Make sure to take your snacks with you, prepare your lunch ahead of time and store all your delicious leftovers in awesome containers that you love.
Your kitchen will support you on your health journey, just make sure that you have set yourself up for success!