Crazy Sexy Healthy Living

26 Jul

As I mentioned yesterday, I’m trying to embrace a healthier lifestyle.  My first step was to adopt new eating habits.  I’ve been a vegetarian for over 10 years now, but that doesn’t mean I was eating healthy.  Trust me, vegetarians can eat as bad, if not worse, than meat-eaters if we aren’t careful (think pasta, cheese, bread….).  I’ve always leaned toward the unhealthy side, with some overcooked, salted, and buttered vegetables mixed in.  I’ve been listening to a lot of talk radio while I’m working lately (it helps quell the deafening silence in my office) and have heard alot about healthy eating lately.  It was quite intriguing and I decided to look into it for myself.   A friend of mine, by pure chance, introduced me to a book called Crazy Sexy Diet.  Now, don’t see “diet” and think “losing weight.”  This book is about your diet, as what you put in your body every day.  It is written by a girl named Kris Carr.  You may have heard of her.  She was in a Lifetime documentary called Crazy Sexy Cancer and has a book by the same name.  Kris was diagnosed with an incurable cancer in her early 30s.  Since there was no medical cure, she began researching other ways to extend her life.  As it turns out, her diet, was the most important thing she needed to change.  Did you know over 70% of diseases inflicting Americans are caused by our diet?!?!  That is huge.  That statement alone was enough to win me over.  I won’t bore you with all of the details, but I will encourage you, if you are interested in disease prevention and healthy living for your family, to get the book.  It is definitely geared to women in her generation (40 and below) and is a fun, colorful, and easy to follow book.  Very different from your typical health book.  You can also check out the webpage here: www.crazysexydiet.com (the daily articles are really great).

Basically, she touts the importance of eating 80% alkaline foods and 20% acidic foods.  These are the foods most people already know are good for you (fresh veggies, fruits, whole grains, etc.).  Acidic foods include animal based foods like meat, dairy, eggs, white bread, soda, caffeine, etc.  She highly encourages a completely vegan lifestyle, but says to aim for 80/20.  This I liked.  This, I thought, was doable.  I love cheese and I love yogurt and I don’t have to give them up completely.  Just limit my intake to a couple of times a week.  Done.  There is a LOT more to her research and a LOT more to her recommended diet, but that is the basic premise. 

Organic: I’m slowly adopting these healthy living principles.  I started with buying all organic.  Yes, I realize organic is more expensive, sometimes significantly more expensive, but not always.  When I go to Whole Foods (my store of choice), I look for the organic fruits and veggies that are of comparable cost to the non-organic and the produce that is on special.  If a quart of organic strawberries is $9 and I can get 15 organic apples for the same price, I’ll get apples that week (not 15….just 5…ha)  instead of strawberries.  There are so many toxic chemicals in pesticides that are known carcinogens that the risk just is not worth it to me.  What is more important than life?  What good is a new pair of shoes if I’m not around to wear them?  Not good at all.  So I decided that if push comes to shove, I’ll take my organic food over “things” any day. 

Soda:  The next step I made was giving up my beloved Diet Dr. Pepper and Diet Coke.  Thankfully I’m not a coffee person so I didn’t have to worry about that one.  It really wasn’t that difficult.  I just made up my mind that I didn’t want to ingest all the chemicals in soda.  I’m sure you’ve all seen the “other uses” for sodas.  Pretty scary to think what they are doing to your internal organs if they eat through styrofoam.  I’ve only had 2 major cravings when I was particularly tired at work.  I made it through by just getting another big glass of water.

Water:  Speaking of water, drinking water is very important.  As you start adopting this new, clean eating, your body will be naturally eliminating the, for me 28, years of toxins I’ve been ingesting.  It is important to drink like a camel so that the toxins will flush out of your body.  Additionally, most of us are, unbeknownst to us, very dehydrated, which can cause a myriad of problems.  I’m drinking a couple of glasses first thing in the morning and while I get ready for work, at least 4 16oz bottles of water at work, and then a few more glasses at night for dinner and before bed.  I have no idea what my total intake is in ounces, but its alot.  The first couple of weeks, I was making very frequent trips to the restroom.  Now that my body is adjusting, my potty breaks have leveled off to normal. 

Veggies:  Ah veggies.  I’m trying to eat mostly veggies throughout the day.  I eat a salad for lunch every day filled with greens and veggies.  I’m already starting to crave veggies all the time and they taste so amazing to me now that I’ve gotten over the hump of my processed, over salted, over buttered, over sugared, food addiction.  Whatever I make for dinner is loaded with veggies. 

That’s the majority of what I’ve done so far.  I’ve still got a ways to go on sugar and dairy, but the slow transition is making it easier for this to become a LIFESTYLE and not a diet.  This is not about calories, the scale, or my pant size.  This is about wanting to live a long and healthy life.  It is taking a larger time commitment that just grabbing crap out of the cabinet, but now I’m starting to get in a pattern for preparing everything.

For example, last night I went to Whole Foods on the way home from work.  I prepared dinner and while it was cooking started working on my salad goodies for the week. 

Salad Bar

That is my own personal salad bar.  It consists of fresh organic romaine, fresh organic spinach, fresh organic kale, frozen organic corn and edamame that I heated on the stove, kidney beans (I used organic canned that I drained and rinsed), organic cherry tomatoes, organic cucumber, organic artichokes (from a jar, drained and rinsed), and organic avocado.  I put everything in tubs so in the morning before I work, I just throw a little of everything into my salad container.  See below. 

Fresh GreensYummy SaladTarget Salad Bowl

 

Isn’t my salad bowl cute?! I put my dressing in that little cup. I got it on sale at Target for $1 in the outdoor section!  It is awesome.  I need to get a couple more.  So that’s it.  It took me about 20 mins of prep last night and takes me about 5 mins in the morning.  Not bad at all.  I crave it all morning after I prepared it too! 

Last night, I made a mexican casserole.  I basically winged a recipe.  It was AMAZING.  I decided to do it because we had some tortilla chips that were getting stale. 

Delicious Fresh Mexican Casserole

Jason and I both loved it!  Here is my recipe:

 
Ingredients: 
Baked, organic tortilla chips (gluten-free preferably)- enough to fill the bottom of a 9×12 glass baking pan
2 Fresh organic tomatoes diced
1 1/2 cups Organic corn (frozen and thawed or canned- drained and rinsed)
1 1/2 cups Organic kidney beans (frozen and thawed or canned- drained and rinsed)
1/2 of a Fresh Organic Red Onion chopped
1/2 package of Boca (or Morningstar) Veggie Beef Crumbles
1/2 package organic taco meat seasoning
1/2 package of organic lite mexican cheese (optional)
1/2 tsp of minced garlic
Fresh cilantro chopped (probably 2 tablespoons or so)
Dash of salt and pepper
 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1.  Cover the bottom of the baking dish with chips.
2.  Prepare the veggie meat crumbles by putting them in a sauce pan (frozen is fine), add about 1/3 cup of water, and the taco seasoning.  Heat it thoroughly until all the water is gone.
3.  Mix all the ingredients except cheese in a bowl.
4.   Pour the ingredients on top of the chips.
5.  Lightly top of cheese (optional)
6.  Bake for 10-15 mins until thoroughly heated.
7. Enjoy immediately!
 
Sorry for the long post! Hope everyone is having a great Tuesday! 
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