To continue our series of Q + A, here are a few of the most common questions I get asked about when it comes to eating real food.
Love + Light, Stephanie Bigart
I want to eat healthier, but where do I start?
I get asked this question a lot when it comes to wellness. It is overwhelming to know where to begin. There are so many factors that go into just eating healthier. Such as, how is your sleep? Water intake? Exercise? Stress level? From here, I like to have my clients keep a journal of what they are currently eating for each meal as well as snacks. This helps us figure out where they currently are and where they would like to be in terms of their nutrition. It helps to write it down as it is so easy to forget what we've eaten as each day goes by. From here, we work together on coming up with a plan to set them up for success on ways to add in healthier choices. When we get adequate sleep, we have the energy to make nourishing food choices and we also have the energy to move our bodies (which both make us feel better!). Getting good, quality sleep really is the foundation. My rule of thumb when it comes to healthy eating is adding more plants into your meals. To start, try having one meal a day be whole food plant based then see about adding more and more. Eating whole food plant based meals not only helps our environment but it saves animals too! It's a win win!
I know I should be drinking more water every day, how can I make sure I am getting enough?
It can be hard to drink enough water every day as life gets in the way and then all of the sudden, it's been hours and hours since we've had any water! I think the key is to make drinking water easy and accessible. I keep a water bottle (glass preferred) near me at all times so I am constantly being reminded to drink water even if I don't feel thirsty. For many, it is also helpful to have a straw when drinking water (metal preferred) as it is easier to drink from than having to unscrew a lid, etc. I will also add citrus (lemon or lime) to my water to give it a little kick! I recommend 80-100 oz of water/day. When we are hydrated, our brains can thrive, we have more energy and we overall feel better. When we feel tired, we often reach for caffeine, but try reaching for water instead. You will notice a big difference in the way you feel and you will sleep better too! For more information on staying hydrated, visit our blog post: The Many Benefits of Staying Hydrated
What foods promote skin health?
SB: Our food choices definitely play a key role in healthy, vibrant skin. Many foods that contain gluten, dairy and processed sugar create inflammation in the skin and can lead to numerous break outs, rashes, dull skin and redness. Eating an organic (when possible) hearty plant based diet helps keep skin looking clear and vibrant (and your digestive system will thank you too). Focusing on a variety of whole, plant based foods that are in their natural state is best. Staying away from processed foods as much as possible is important to ensure you are getting the proper high quality nutrients your body (and skin) need. Some of my plant based go-to's are listed here:
GREENS: kale, swiss chard, collard greens, spinach, sprouts, arugula, turnip and beet greens
BERRIES: blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, goji berries and mulberries
HEALTHY OILS: olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil
HEALTHY GRAINS & LEGUMES: quinoa, millet, buckwheat, amaranth, dried beans and lentils
HEALING HERBS & ROOTS: mint, basil, tumeric and ginger
NUTS & SEEDS:
walnuts, almonds, cashews, brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, hemp seeds