We are all different. There is no "perfect diet" that works for everyone. Your idea of the "perfect diet" may change several times over your lifetime.
People are often surprised that as a Nutritionist and Health Coach, I don't recommend a specific type of diet to my clients. My philosophy is "Eat to thrive." Whether you are Vegetarian, Vegan, or follow Paleo or Keto programs.......my philosophy is to eat what makes you feel amazing. Relax. Listen to your body and don't judge. And know that what makes you feel great today, may change at some point in the future.
I was a vegan for 5 years in my 20's. I was attracted to a vegan lifestyle because of my love for animals and my desire to find the healthiest diet. For several years, I felt great. I experienced incredible energy, vitality and weight loss. I worked out like a maniac in those days...hiking, biking or skiing for hours each day and teaching fitness classes. I also avoided fat like the plague! Overtime, I no longer felt nourished the way I was eating. My energy reserves were depleted, my digestion was off, and I battled rosacea (a acne related skin rash) for many years. In the end, introducing some meat, fish and healthy fats into my diet was the right choice for me.
Today I am not married to any one stye of eating. I call it being "Flexitarian"! I eat a heavily pant-based diet that includes good quality fish and meat. I drink 60-80 ounces of water and 1-2 cups of green tea every day. Most days, I lean towards vegetarian meals until dinner which makes me feel light, bright and energized throughout the day. I always start my morning with an energizing green smoothie and I usually have a giant salad loaded with green leafy vegetables, herbs, nuts, seeds, avocado and olive oil for lunch. Dinner is usually fish or high quality meat, or a whole grain dish with tons of veggies. I don't digest beans and legumes well, so I naturally avoid these foods even though they are incredibly nutritious. My favorite snack is avocado toast topped with a poached egg or sliced nectarines and a sprinkle of sunflower seeds. (Yum!) If my energy is low, I will kick sugar, wheat and dairy to the curb for a few days. I also love cooking for my friends and loved ones.....The more the merrier! That is how I eat to thrive.
My "Eat To Thrive" philosophy is about focusing on whole foods, reducing sugar and processed foods and noticing how you feel every day.
- Do you have sustained energy throughout the day?
- Do you feel radiant and sexy?
- Is your skin clear?
- Is your hair shiny and healthy?
- Do you sleep well?
- Do you have trouble managing your weight or losing weight?
- Do you poop at least once per day?
- Do you often feel bloated after meals, or energized and ready to go?
When it comes to finding what foods make you thrive, you can carve out your own path. Don't be obsessed. If you are trying to reduce sugar or gluten and some mistakes happen....Don't worry about it. A little bit won't hurt you! Just get back on track at your next meal.
Yours in health,