Have you ever been inspired to do something and wanted to bring your family on board, but they were less than enthusiastic?
That happened to me with healthy eating. My husband and I were what I would call “semi-healthy” eaters. In other words, we ate plenty of vegetables and fruit, but we also ate lots of sugar and refined white flour (the two evils of the food world). We also weren’t opposed to a greasy burger and some crunchy tacos with who-knows-what kind of meat and cheese every now and then.
But that all changed, my friends, when I read Tosca Reno’s Just the Rules for her clean eating plan. I was so inspired that I informed my husband that I’d be revamping our diets. To which he replied, “Whose diets?”
“Ours,” I repeated, enthusiastically.
He laughed, as if laughing at something cute our one-year-old did. “You can change your diet, but I’m not going to.”
I was crushed. How could he not be on board with me when I was newly inspired for healthy living? “Fine,” I said. I vowed to commit myself to prayer, that God would change his heart.
A few weeks later, he was taking raw broccoli to work as part of his lunch. Prayer is powerful 🙂
If you currently feel like you aren’t feeding your family the way you know you should, trust me when I say that I understand. I know your internal concern and intense desire to steer your family’s diet in the right direction.
If you have very picky eaters and/or if you are the only one on board with healthy eating, then I suggest
Keep broth on hand
I can’t hide the fact that I intensely like (because “love” should be reserved for people and God) Nourishing Traditions. I purchased this book and I kid you not, I felt like a person who was having their first meal in a long time when I was reading it. There is so. much. insight. and detailed explanations for properly prepared foods.
While transitioning to a complete Nourishing Traditions lifestyle may prove difficult for many, one thing that you can start doing is to make more broth. Homemade broths, especially bone broths or fish broth, are supercharged with nutrients and minerals that our bodies need. And best of all, they are so so simple to make!
Whenever we eat any kind of bone-in chicken, I save all bones in plastic baggies in the freezer. When we get a sufficient amount (like at least 15-20), I put them in the crockpot with some leftover veggies (like celery, onion, and carrots), a couple bay leafs (if I have any on hand), and a couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. I fill the crockpot all the way up with water and cook it on low for 24 hours.
When that time is up, I drain all the broth out and I’m left with delicious, gelatin-rich broth. You can do a veggie version of this by just leaving out the bones if you have none.
Use broth to cook your grains
This is a pretty straight forward tip. If you’re cooking rice, barley, quinoa, or any other kind of grain, try using broth instead of water.
One thing I do suggest is that you season your broth before you start cooking the grain. Otherwise, you’ll have to try to season it after it’s cooked, and mixing it in may leave your grains more mushy than you wanted.
Don’t drink sugary drinks
We used to buy cartons of juice and finish them in one day. And that was before we had any kids. We drank waaaaaaay too much sugar.
As of today, I can’t tell you how long it’s been since I’ve had a coke. At least 10 years. We hardly ever keep juice in our house either, as there is way too much sugar in it.
We’ve trained our kids to drink water to the point that they request it when we are out to eat. My older daughter will actually pass up juice and chocolate milk and ask for water sometimes.
If you are a sugary drink consumer, then this is honestly the best place to start. By replacing those drinks with water, I think you will see a huge difference in your body pretty quickly.
Soak your oatmeal
This is definitely something I learned from Nourishing Traditions. All grains are meant to be either soaked, soured, or sprouted (more on that later). Eating them without doing these things is, in my opinion, what’s causing everyone to need to be gluten-free. Who knows.
Soaking oatmeal takes literally 2 minutes of your time. The night before you are planning to make oatmeal, put the amount of oats you want into a pot and cover them with double the amount of water (filtered water, if you can) and 1 tbsp of an acidic medium for every 2 cups you cook. Acidic mediums include: apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, kefir, yogurt, or whey. Personally, I usually go with apple cider vinegar.
In the morning, turn on your pot on and fill it with more water (depending on how thick you like it). Cook till oats are cooked through.
Add lemon to your water
There are numerous benefits to drinking water with lemon. Some of them include, but are not limited to, detoxifying, losing weight, vitamin C boost, and digestion aid.
I admit that sometimes I want something rather than water. That’s when it helps to have lemons on hand. When I was pregnant I drank lemon water like a champ and it really helped curb thirst much more quickly than regular water.
Keep fresh fruits and veggies on hand for quick snacks
When I’m feeling snacky, I’m honestly looking for something quick to grab. I really don’t like to cook extra stuff between meals. Likewise, my kids will often settle for eating extra veggies or fruit if that’s what we have on hand.
For some super healthy snack ideas, check out this post I wrote. When processed things are not around to quickly grab, it’s amazing how you and your kiddos will settle for things we should be eating anyway!
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