Welcome to the second week of fresh starts! Hopefully last week challenged you to dig into your faith based routines and explore a little deeper this new year. This week we’re talking about refreshing the choices we make with our diets. As I’m writing, I’m ten days away from wrapping up a Whole30. After 20 days of no added sugar and no grains or dairy, I’m READY to return to the world of Oreos and pasta. But! I’m hoping some of the switches I learned to make over the last several weeks will stick long term.
I’m convinced that long term change happens when the little shifts become lasting. Here are three little diet shifts that I encourage you to incorporate into your diet this week. If these don’t work for you, try something else, but when we don’t give up, the good stuff starts to happen. Even if you’ve felt defeated in this area a million times, it doesn’t mean that this can’t be the week that you finally find the changes that really work for you.
1. Veggies as carbs
This month I’ve been eating all my normal dishes: chicken stir fry and rice, pasta with sausage and mushrooms, and pot roast with mashed potatoes. The difference? The rice, is cauliflower rice, the noodles are spiralized zucchini and sweet potatoes, and the mashed potatoes are made with ghee and chicken broth instead of heavy cream and butter. Here’s the secret: Cover all the stuff in just the right sauce, seasoning, or toppings, and you can barely taste the difference. Want an easy access point? Pick up a bag of cauliflower rice from the frozen veggie section in your grocery store. Then make a stir fry as usual: chicken pieces, broccoli, sugar peas, water chestnuts, etc. in a sauce made of soy sauce and sesame oil. Toss it all together and eat. Honestly, you’ll never know that wasn’t real rice.
2. Dried fruit as dessert
We are so conditioned to eat a dessert at the end of every meal. So much, that sometimes dinner doesn’t feel complete without that cookie or bowl of ice cream. My swap this month has been dried fruit. It’s sweet and filling, but in the end, it’s just fruit. Trader Joe’s is a great place to pick these up. I especially like dried pineapple, pears, and mango. Give it a try and tell me what you think!
3. Healthy (but filling) snacks
I’ve always had trouble with snacking. Whether it’s a handful of chips a few at a time until I’ve eaten a zillion, or dipping my hand into the candy bowl every time I walk by it, snack portioning can get away from me. So I’m getting more intentional about portioning my snacks and being sure those snack are full of wholesome and filling ingredients, by packing a nutritional bar as my after-school snack. On the Whole30 I’m eating tons of Lara Bars, but during the rest of the year I’ll be picking up loads of Cliff Bars, Luna Bars, That’s It Bars and especially the relatively new to the scene, Perfect Bars. These bars literally taste like you’re eating a hunk of cookie dough and you can get them at Starbucks when you pick up your coffee.
I hope this helps as you set some intentions toward fresh starts in your diet this week. Let me know some simple swaps you like to use! I’ll see you next week as we talk about fresh starts in your entertainment.
Welcome! I'm a wife, foster mom, fourth year music teacher, and Jesus follower, and am chronically curious about just about everything. Join me as I explore the calling God has for my family's story.
"I am the Vine, you are the Branches. If you abide in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing."