Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Hail Mary Food of Grace

I challenge you to live a healthy life one day at a time. I encourage you to make good decisions minute by minute so at the end of the day you succeed. In a world that is saturated with misinformation about the best ways to lose weight no wonder we feel helpless. Billions of dollars are spent on advertising for the quick fix-gimmicks (No carbohydrates, only proteins or eat low fat) for the Million Dollar Question: How do we lose weight? I believe in the no diet- diet. When you take it upon yourself to eat better (lean proteins, vegetables, whole grains) and refrain from eating poorly (fatty meats, fried foods, processed snacks) then you will ultimately make your life better. Look at every day as a new opportunity and empower yourself by becoming your own advocate. The ultimate fix is within you.

As a professional chef I help people lose weight through my cooking and, as a nutritionist I guide them through my words. The truth is it’s easier for someone to lose weight when I am in control of the cooking, but it is more important in the long run to teach someone how to cook for themselves. I understand that losing weight is challenging and that life is tough, and we are all juggling an agenda but it is time to empower yourself.

I recently encountered two very young women who chose to get their stomachs stapled rather than educating themselves on how to eat properly. This is just another example of how someone can make a decision based on trend or fad vs. hard work and education. When we fall into these traps remember, we can start a new day and begin again. Eating whole foods, smaller portions, leaner proteins, making sure to hydrate yourself, exercise regularly and sleep as consistently as possible is the way to go. No matter what you have tried this is how to live your everyday life.

Life has become easy and hard in the same breath. There are drive-thru windows so we can eat in a matter of minutes. Beware, those are usually empty calories that can make you feel satisfied for a moment and then worse than you did before you ate. We send text messages and expect a response in a matter of seconds. We are a society in a hurry.

Choose to have a diet filled with fresh vegetables like kale, spinach, peppers, and broccoli rather than canned vegetables. Brown rice is a great carbohydrate to add rather than a large bowl of pasta. Eating a chicken breast without the skin grilled, or a nice white fish is better for you than a fatty t-bone. But if you love the canned vegetables, the pasta, or the T-bone how can you make it work? Try eating these things every few weeks and make the portion smaller (about the size of your palm) and remember life in moderation. Try eating it every few weeks and make the portion smaller (about the size of your palm) remember life in moderation.

Diet food doesn’t have to taste bad! In fact you don’t have to think of it as diet food at all. It can be amazing and refreshing and leave you with tons of energy whereas heavy takeout meal will leave you heavy and lethargic. The key to eating healthy is making it flavorful. Using citrus, vinegars and spices like Herbs of Provence. Layering flavors like garlic, caramelized onion and leek will leave you asking for more. These help to develop richness to a simple grilled chicken breast. Like creating sauces out of yogurts, reduced vinegars and tomato sauces. These are techniques that can be learned.

I challenge you to live your life one day at a time. I challenge you to take three minutes out of your day to make a plan for your meal. I challenge you to join me in my column and learn how to enhance your life through food. Let’s grow from where we have been, and let us return to the balance for tomorrow. Fast food really doesn’t make life easier- it creates more problems than it solves. I will be giving recipes, tips and information from farmers, chefs, fitness instructors, doctors and actors that live healthy lives but still eat delicious food.

The Washington Times Communities Section also features this article. I will be writing with them every Monday, Wednesday and Friday

Check it out! Click on the Link Below and Find Hail Mary Food of Grace