Food and the right foods for our individual bodies, fuel, replenish, energize and just make us feel good and youthful from the inside, out. We can feel like a 5 year old at 50 and live to tell about it. :) It's a combination of various, and knowing what foods work well for us makes us 80% there--- with 20% following through at life's grocery store. And go for foods that you also enjoy that work for you. This is where it all begins with creating our best dietary (eating) framework... and then spring-boarding from there with fancier and more exotic dishes that incorporate these best foods. By combining those two modes, we give ourselves a huge winning ticket for life's everyday, come what may...
I love bread, especially warm fresh out of the oven Italian bread, with unsalted butter-- and melted cheese too! And that's a pretty cheap eating budget too... I did that math many many years ago. :) But with having to watch my gluten intake (something I was alerted to in my very late thirties while having a casual lunch with a work colleague and friend), I stay away from it more times than not to avoid any stomach upsets, lethargic-feels and overall muscle malaise as that may slow me down for a day or two, leaving me out of sorts also. So I pay attention to it, create a rough weekly meal plan which is quite simple, revolving around grilled fish, chicken, a once weekly lean beef gluten-free burger or beef dish, avocados and other fresh fruits, leafy green vegetables, and yogurts for the most part,--- and all naturally gluten-free. And with being disciplined with this, I am rewarded each and every week with an energy that is through the roof, and consistent for longer working days, and an overall happy and joyful, full-of-life mentality to make my way through the world too. Needless to say, we all have to pay attention to what we eat, and when we eat to stay focused and to bring a higher and sustained level of energy and thinking to the work we do. It's always a great idea to give our daily and weekly intake a scan every now and again to see how we're measuring up and how we can improve upon them to give our bodies the best fuel for our longer haul years ahead.
During classroom teaching years, I had a few young (Grades 3 - 4) students who were quite the plenty on ADHD medications, and with closely working with these students felt that a better targeted diet (more whole fruit, veggies and lean protein, and less flour and ready-made sugary foods) in combination with a more structured routine for the better part of the day, would do more good than harm. I was happy to see this ring true over a short three to six month period where less and less medication and even eventual elimination, with improved quiet focus, concentration and critical thinking skills became a reality. I often see these high anxiety and erratic behaviours in adults too, or a revolving door of elevation and depression and know that diet plays a super-big role in managing our moods, how we see life, our disposition towards it, how we think, and how we relate to each other.
Breakfast has always been and continues to be our most important meal of the day. It not only breaks the fast with our hours of restful overnight slumber, it calmly awakens and steers our bodies into welcomed action with that first dose of good, clean and healthy protein (if incorporated), and gets our momentum going for a full productive day ahead. Our energy and thinking is not the same when we go after those quick ready made heavier carbs (bagels, bread and preserves, donuts) with coffee/ tea minus some good decent lean protein in the mix. Here again, seeking out quality protein that we love is key to making changes to improve our dietary habits. A few beginning starters that I find helpful are...
... a cup of low fat and favourite fruit yogurt blend
... a boiled egg (ready to go in 10 minutes)
... leftover grilled fish or lean chicken from dinner the night before
... a hot bowl of favourite oats (flavoured or not) with whole milk
... half of a can of drained white tuna (in water); add a tad of mayo for flavour
... a lean grilled sausage
... protein-rich hummus
The variations are endless and allow us to pick and choose rotational protein options and blends to get our day going, full of vitality, clear thinking and optimism for what's ahead. Being aware of and investing in good eating habits (for the most part), every 4 to 5 hours on the average day supports good wellness habits, and allows us that every now and again field day indulgence of flour and sugar. :)
This is a really tough one, especially for bloggers (and our younger up-and-coming generation) whose entire connected livelihood and income for the most part depend on various social media windows, maintaining their social media presence and public interaction with daily and sometimes even two or three times daily blog posts, tweets on Twitter, Facebook, Bloglovin, Instagram, and Snapchat, and that's just for starters. They are tied to their phones and social media platforms for the better part of 18 to 20 hours a day (weekends too, but to a lesser extent) to keep the wheels spinning and audience engagement up, and this is the reality of blogging as a solo career. It is, indeed. Many high-profiled bloggers have quietly expressed and verbally shared that they would love to loose (turn off) their iPhones for even half a day (many being women with young children), but there is always this fear of missing the next big potential collaboration with a desired brand calling, or a decline in audience engagement with missing a day, or work position that requires them to be available to receive communication from their bosses or other contacts with so many businesses being 24/7 these days after that 9 to 5 operational hour. I've been there, and know the pulls it can create inside and out.
There is a lot that goes into creating and managing a blog as a full-time business, legally and otherwise, and many (myself included) will tell you that the most enjoyable part of the business is post creation, which is my focus preference. This is where it's at for us and being able to share experiences with each other and with forming a community of women guiding and supporting women for the better,-- humans supporting humans. Here too, I still believe in that one day away from the phone and social media to just disconnect and let go, spend some time solo, with family, with a smaller group of bonded girlfriends and just chill. This is especially crucial for women as we are more invested in the nurturing of our families, taking care of each other, and maintaining a healthy, loving, peaceful and calm home environment for our hard working hubbies and growing children. The audience (old and new) will still be there and quite frankly, any full-fledged and respectful being knows that disconnecting for a few is a healthy no-brainer. Turn the phone off and stop imagining things going kaput (!) haha They won't. You deserve a disconnected stretch, and readers will be back when you're back. :)
And if you missed it... here's » Part 1 of this series: 5 Ways To Everyday Calm
Tomorrow we're tackling a serious one, and it sure deserves its own stand alone post.