I have never been in France, but I LOVE french cuisine. Rich and savory dishes seem to be a staple in French food. Most americans think such hearty and fatty meals are bad for the waistline and heart. But the French live longer, skinnier and suffer less from coronary disease. But how, one might ask. It’s no big secret, really, how the French stay healthy and happy. They love food and know how to enjoy it. I was reading a very interesting article about things the French teach their kids about eating. I believe we should all incorporate most of these rules into our lives, if we haven’t already.
Healthy eating is possible for all. Remember, eating healthy is not only about to the type of food you eat, it’s also about HOW you eat. Here are some simple rules to go by:
Savor food. Eating is not a sin, it’s not only a necessity, but a pleasure. Don’t gulp down your food like it’s a marathon, enjoy each bite and slow down!
Eat real foods in healthy portions. When you eat whole foods, not only are you giving your body important nutrients but you are also satisfying your appetite. Wholesome foods are nutrient rich, more filling and satisfying. Quality ingredients do make for a better meal. Visit your farmers market and eat seasonally when possible. When you cut down on processed foods you are doing a favor to your health and waistline. And for crying out loud, don’t skip lunch cause you are saving your “calories” for that buffet you are attending for dinner. It won’t help you lose weight and it’s not healthy in so many levels.
Let’s get cooking! Preparing your own meals is not only good for your health from a nutrition standpoint. It’s good for your mind and soul. It’s a wonderful opportunity to spend more time with your kids and teach them the valuable lesson of how to use the kitchen! You can pass on recipes and create beautiful and healthy memories.
Sit down! Another fast disappearing tradition in America, eating at the table. This is the time to enjoy your food and your company. It’s time we stop eating standing up by the kitchen counter like a cranky teenager. It’s time we stop eating and driving, it’s kind of gross and dangerous. Make time to just eat, it’s worth it.
Drink water. This is a big one our culture, Americans consume most their calories in liquid form! Flavored coffees, juices and soda are an everyday occurrence. I don’t need to elaborate, its simple, favor water when it comes to liquids if you want to be healthy and skinny.
Know your limit. When you are full, just stop eating. This is easier when you eat slowly because you give your stomach time to signal your brain. So, two birds one stone. 🙂
Don’t snack after dinner. Once the kitchen is closed for the night, stay away. This will help you do some intermittent fasting, which has great health benefits like weight loss, for example.
Enjoy eating! Eating should be an enjoyable experience. Stop counting calories at every turn, stop with the guilt trips, it’s not healthy and it doesn’t help your cause. If you are going to eat a piece of chocolate cake, make it a religious experience :). Try different types of food, flavors and textures. Try new recipes or new restaurants! Eating is so much fun, don’t turn it into something tragic. Eat wholesome foods a plenty and treat yourself in moderation. No fuss, no shame.
Follow these simple rules to eating and you will live happier and healthier. You will smile more often and you will look better, that is a fact (in my opinion 🙂 ).