Making lasting changes to your diet
When you’re making changes to your diet and introducing new things, it's a good idea to remember to take your time and begin slowly, this shouldn’t be a race.
As you know, nothing changes without you taking action. At the bottom of this article find my downloadable Easy Raw Food Shopping list to help you when thinking about your weekly shop. It's not meant to be exhaustive, just a go-to list of the most easily available foods from your local supermarket.
Go through each item on the list highlighting the foods you already know that you like. These are a win-win straight away! Leave out ones you're not sure you like and new ones that you'll try later on. You can come back to these later when you're feeling adventurous to explore more.
Your 10 steps
Now that you’re armed with a list of fresh foods that you do like, here are some suggestions to get started transitioning to a raw food diet:
1) More fruit and vegetables
Start adding more fruits and veggies into your diet. One extra portion of these a day will get you started quickly. Or you could try one extra portion per meal. If you can then make them raw.
2) More salad
Can you move on up by introducing a salad every day? Could you enjoy a salad with or for lunch for example? Or to accompany your evening meal? Happy to move it up to both meals?
3) Homemade soup
How about a homemade veggie soup? You can make a big batch and freeze some for another day. It's also a great way to use up leftover veggies in the fridge. It’s economical and will help to reduce any your weekly food waste at home.
You can gently warm them if you don’t yet fancy giving raw soups a go and this will help to leave the nutrients and enzymes in place.
4) Fresh Juices
How are you with freshly squeezed juices? If you can, get hold of a juicer (they can be reasonably priced) make them veggie based and green. If you need to make them sweeter then add a piece of fruit to make them more palatable such as an apple or a pear.
5) Colourful smoothies
Have you been lured into the greatness of smoothies yet? I find these work really well in the mornings especially with kids who like to create their own.
6) Dips, dressings, sauces, salsa
Do you like salad dressings, dips, salsas and sauces? Try creating some of your own to liven things up a little. It's not very time consuming or expensive to do. Your freshly prepared food contains no nasty ingredients that are often found in our supermarket foods. Another win!
7) Make some fun food swaps
How about substituting some cooked foods for raw ones? Sometimes try cauliflower rice instead of rice, or spiralized courgettes, sweet potato or beetroot instead of pasta? Play with your food until you find what combinations suit you. Keep on moving forward little by little.
8) Drink enough water
Remember to swap your regular drinks for water when you can. It's so much better for you. Not only does it hydrate you but it gives you energy, flushes out toxins and aids digestion.
9) Listen to your body
Eat when you're hungry, find out which foods work well for you. Are you hungry or do you need a glass of water
10) Consciously chew your food
Chewing produces saliva which not only moistens your food so that it’s easier to eat, it also contains enzymes that aid the digestive process beginning in the mouth.
Just have fun with it all
Once you've begun experimenting in this way and you've found things you really enjoy then start to write them down and keep them in a file so that you don't forget. Very soon you'll have enough dishes to start putting them together.
Challenge yourself to enjoy introducing new techniques, new flavours, new ingredients little by little each week. Keeping it simple, fun & interesting and not taking it all too seriously will help you from feeling bored or overwhelmed.
As with any change in your diet you should always speak to your doctor or qualified healthcare professional before making changes and to discuss if including more plant-based and raw foods would be suitable for you.
In the meantime, here’s a little something for you to print off and pin on your fridge at home. It’s my 1-page shopping list to help you get started.
If you enjoyed this post, I’d be very grateful if you’d help it spread by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on Facebook. Thank you!
I’m off to make some tea.