Eat to Live
In the Black community, diabetes, heart disease, obesity and high blood pressure are waging a war on our people. And, we all know someone in our families dealing with these issues. Although some of these health woes are linked to genetics, we can increase our chances of avoiding these diseases simply by changing our diet.
Yes, I know it is hard to give up the unhealthy foods you were raised on. Yes, I know after a long day at work, it is easy to hit McDonalds drive-thru for dinner. But, instead of going cold turkey on your fried chicken and French fries, you can make slow dietary changes without feeling deprived. When you add healthy foods to your diet, your energy, appearance, and overall health will improve.
Here are a few simple adjustments you can make today:
- Drink More Water
You may not like water, but you need it! Your body needs water to function and drinking water improves your skin and helps all of your organs work more efficiently. If you want to stop feeling like crap every day, then increase your water consumption.
- Increase fruits and veggies at and in-between meals
Fruits and vegetables are packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and some even have antioxidants to lower your risk of various cancers. Instead of being a straight carnivore at dinner, adjust your meat portion a bit and load up on more fruits and vegetables. Apples, oranges, and carrots also make excellent, low-calorie snacks for in between meals.
- Stop Frying Everything
I am not a nutritionist but I am pretty sure that taking anything and dropping into a large amount of boiling grease is not good for you. The meat absorbs the fat in the cooking oil and it all gets deposited into your body. Grilled meats are much healthier and easier for your body to digest. Try to reduce your fried food intake as much as possible.
- Get Out of the Box
Literally. When you are in the grocery store, pick up a box of Hamburger Helper and read the ingredient list. Anything that comes in a box, has unpronounceable ingredients, and can last until 2035 is probably not a good look for your body. Back away from the prepackaged meals and stick to whipping up a few dishes of your own.
Of course, there are many more changes you can make to your diet, but you have to start somewhere. Start with these changes and soon you will be looking for more ways you can eat to live!
*water pic: gawker.com
*fruits and veggies: lifehack.com
*fried foods: wikipedia.com
*prepackaged foods: interflexgroup.com
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Tai Gooden is a freelance writer, mom, wife, part-time blogger and full-time Whovian. In April 2014, she published Amour Rising: A Collection of Poetry. She has written for xojane, BlogHer, HelloGiggles, HamptonRoads.com, BlackAndMarriedWithKids.com, MadameNoire, and Clutch Magazine. When Tai is not waiting for the TARDIS, she’s either on Twitter (@taigooden) or rambling on her blog, http://www.taigooden.com.