As we begin a new year, it’s a good time to take a look at what we’re eating, how we’re eating, and consider what we need to do differently. Eating mindfully means that you pay attention to what you eat and how it affects your body, either positively or negatively, making sure you eat nutrient-rich beneficial foods and stop eating the ones that harm you.
Maybe you think that’s too much work and you don’t want to have to do that much thinking about every meal. The way to take the effort out of it is by forming good eating habits that you’ll do automatically without having to do a lot of thinking. One step at a time, one food at a time, incorporate a beneficial food into your diet or eliminate one that is harmful. Make it a part of your routine and soon you won’t even have to think about it. We’ll help you by making one suggestion per week.
Week 1, Berry Berry Good!
When it comes to foods that taste good and are also good for you, berries are superstars. The following are just some of the many benefits they provide:
- High in antioxidants to help prevent inflammation that leads to chronic illness like cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and heart disease. Anthocyanins, which give the various berries their bright red, blue and purple colors, are the antioxidants that not only help prevent chronic illness, they also are anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory, and they are good for eye health, lowering blood pressure, and help with weight loss.
- Great sources of fiber for gut and digestive health.
- Full of vitamins and nutrients including vitamin C, potassium, beta carotene, and folate.
- Fight urinary tract infections – both blueberries and cranberries help combat the bacteria that attaches to the urinary tract lining and cause painful infections.
You can buy fresh berries in season or frozen ones any time of the year. (I usually keep bags of Costco’s frozen organic blueberries and cherries in my freezer.) Add them to your morning oatmeal, smoothie, or yogurt, in salads, or enjoy them as a snack. You can bake with them and add them to muffins, pancakes, or breads. Your many choices include blueberries, raspberries, cherries, blackberries, strawberries, cranberries, acai berries, goji berries, and many others. Over the next week, buy one or two of your favorites and try to eat some at least three different ways. To help you get started, here is our super easy, no-cook, YoBeNut recipe below:
- 5 – 6 oz Plain or low-sugar greek yogurt (I like Chobani less-sugar flavored yogurt)
- 1 handful fresh berries of your choice
- 1 handful walnuts
- 1 drizzle honey (If your yogurt is plain or your berries are tart, you'll want to add a little sweetener)
Combine the ingredients in a bowl and enjoy!
Why this is nutritious…the yogurt has probiotics for your gut, the berries have antioxidants and fiber, and the walnuts are a great source of Omega-3s and fiber.