One of the most enduring aspects of my personal wellness journey is a continual effort to find balance and avoid extremism. The health and fitness industry is permeated by black and white, good or bad thinking, but I believe it’s in The Gray that most people find true wellness. The ability to not obsess over diet, exercise, weight, or appearance — but to still have those things matter and have importance — is essential to optimal health.
We are built to move. The human form is beautifully and perfectly suited for endurance, power, and flexibility. For optimal health we must respect, celebrate, and nurture our physical abilities with purposeful and enjoyable activity.
We don’t own a grill and until I figured out this broiling technique, I was at a loss for how to cook fish. Baking always produced dry fish and I always destroyed the fillet when I tried pan-frying. It was frustrating. Enter the easiest way to cook fish — under the broiler!
I’ve been making this delicious pesto for over a decade. Usually, I make it in bulk and store it in meal-sized portions in the freezer for an easy way to add some amazing flavor to a meal. When you prepare and consume fairly simple foods, sometimes a sauce, or pesto, or special spice combination is a really lovely change-up. This pesto is fantastic because it’s crazy versatile. I’ve used it on rice, quinoa, sautéed greens, roasted veggies, and on top of fish. It really can go with just about anything. My partner eats it by the spoonful.
The modern food system, and therefore modern eaters, have a dysfunctional and unhealthy relationship with sugar. It’s one of the most addictive substances (up to 8 times more addicting than cocaine) that humans regularly consume and added sugar is in nearly every processed food product made.
Overnight oats have had their moment in the spotlight, but it’s for very good reason. They’re cheap, easy, nutritious, portable, and adjustable to accommodate just about any dietary need (except those who need to omit oats). Unfortunately, many of the overnight oats recipes I’ve seen are overly sweetened and unnecessarily complicated. The recipe below is a simplified version that removes the extra sugar and lets the flavors from the pure ingredients stand on their own.
This salad is my go-to lunch right now. It’s packed with delicious flavors, textures, and nutrients to power you through the afternoon with tons of energy and no afternoon slump. I often pair it with a super simple fruit and kefir smoothie for a little extra protein and probiotics.
For decades, we have been told that when it comes to weight gain, loss, and maintenance, a calorie is a calorie. Meaning, that a calorie — which is a specific amount of chemical energy — coming from an energy-yielding macronutrient (carbohydrates, proteins, fats or alcohol) will all function the same in the body. It also implied that a caloric intake of 2,000 calories will have the same impact on weight status, regardless of it’s composition (the respective ratios of carbs, proteins, fats and alcohol).
One of the most important things we can do to improve our diets is to improve the quality of our food sources. While I don’t believe rice is inherently “bad”, the vast majority of people in developed countries consume far too many simple carbohydrates, especially sugar. One way to reduce the amount of carbohydrates while increasing fiber, and many other important vitamins and minerals in our diets is to replace them with vegetables.
This is the third and final post in a series addressing the fundamental Minimal Wellness dietary principles. We are using the framework of Michael Pollan’s iconic dietary advice “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” to help guide the discussion. Make sure you check out Parts 1 and 2 of this series for proper context.