SPRING CLEAN - HOME AND HEALTH
Does anyone else feel a bit more motivation and inspiration in the area of health and home when spring arrives?
It seems that the days of dark and somewhat quiet (almost hibernating at times) can cause us to just let things that we would normally be more attentive to be maybe more easily dismissed.
This can involve many areas of our lives. Maybe in an area such as opening the windows, chasing the dust, and basically spring cleaning. Does cleaning almost become a passionate activity in these first few weeks of spring to you as well? Clean out the unused items, declutter, simplify, freshen up and enjoy!!!
We also seem to get motivated to make some healthy changes in our lives with social activities, exercise, and foods.
When these times of inspiration and energy come on, we are wise to ride that wave. Who knows when it will be back?? Take the path of least resistance and it just seems to be the right thing to do, so let’s go!
CLEAN OUT THE OLD
If the spring cleaning bug has hit you, a place to start can be in the kitchen with your fridge and pantry. Those hidden yet open bottles of odd pickles that you have no idea where they came from? Maybe a good option to toss (but… try to recycle the packaging!) and clear up some space. Many of our jarred food items have quick expiry dates. It’s best to check every few months to reduce the risk of eating something that is not longer ok to eat and getting sick.
Then, once you have only safe foods remaining, you may need to restock some missing items. When replacing items, see if you can find options that have fewer ingredients, or ingredients that are more natural with less additives and chemicals. Read labels and know what those odd obscure words mean. BHA, BHT, MSG, sodium benzoate, aspartame and so on. If it does not sound like food, it is not. Even though these additives are “approved” they have very well know negative affects on us. Headaches, upset tummy, digestive issues, numb hands, and so on. Google these ingredients and see if you note any health concerns linked to additives that are in your foods. You may be shocked. I know I was. I get numb hands when I sleep after I eat anything with MSG (monosodium glutamate). Note MSG has about 30 other names (yeast extract, hydrolyzed protein, etc). You’ll quickly realize when you eat out, which places DO use MSG, even though they say they do not.
For sauces and such, instead of buying processed replacements, see if you can find doable recipes to make yourself. Items such as dressings are an incredibly easy and yet important area to find less processed and better quality ingredients such as oils, spices, etc. These items may only take a few minutes to prepare. A homemade caesar dressing can be incredibly more flavourful than store bought!
Why is it a good idea to make your own? Many reasons, You can control the quality of the oils and ingredients which can really make an impact in your health. Oils is a big one. The cheaper the oil, often the more problematic. Consider that your body uses the fats you eat to make your cell membranes, as well as many other functions.
You have about 30 trillion cells. These cells have a membrane, and that membrane allows nutrients and messages in, and wastes out. The importance of this cannot be under stated. It is literally what allows you to function. You deserve the best and having best quality oils is critical. Also, your brain is almost 60% fat. Again, the quality of that fat is reliant on the quality of all foods you eat, including fats. Give it the best you can.
Your best fats are extra virgin olive oil, unrefined coconut oil, avocado, grass fed animal fats, pastured raised eggs, wild fish, nuts and seeds. With Omega 6 being so prevalent in our foods, trying to get more Omega 3 fats in our diets can go a long way.
It’s good to repeat - your worst fats are trans fats, fried foods, chips, rancid (old) cheap fats.
Jarred sauces such as peanut sauce, butter chicken, spaghetti sauce, teriyaki, bbq, etc, can all be pretty simple with a high rated recipe search. Creating your own sauces can make a big difference in your health when you use quality ingredients. Read labels to see if you can find items in store bought bottles that you know what the ingredients are. Don’t get me wrong, there are a number of really great natural store bought items as well, take a peek and read to see what is in that bottle.
Enjoy your week!