Clear out your kitchen
Welcome to lesson 4
Hi, I'm Juliette and I warmly welcome you to lesson 4 of this free online/eCourse. I hope you're enjoying being here and have started to take action transitioning your diet to become a healthier, happier you.
One easy practical thing you can do right away is to give your kitchen a real clear-out. There’s also something quite lovely about clearing out the things which no longer serve you and making space for the new you coming into fruition.
Can you go through each cupboard one at a time and give it a good clean? Then, when you begin to replace the old items take a look at them individually.
- Do you use them?
- Do you need them?
- Do they still work?
- Are they in need of repair?
- Do you have any plastic containers, bottles and jars with lids missing?
- Have you too many of something?
Now’s the time to take a look and see what needs replacing or updating.
Kitchen drawers are a haven for duplicate utensils and bits and bobs like spare keys, elastic bands and tiny objects you couldn’t find space for and never get used. Could you clean up your duplicates and items you won’t use any more and give them to a local charity?
How about your tea towels, oven mitts, scrubbing brushes, kitchen sponges – is it time to replace these with new ones?
Giving everything (surfaces, pots pans, old jars and stuff at the back of your cupboards that look like they need some lovin’) a good wash with paper towel and soapy water. This shouldn’t take much more than an hour and you’re done. Pop anything you can into the washing-up bowl and give it a good scrub and then dry before either popping into the recycling or the trash or back into the kitchen so it all looks shiny like new. There. Great Job!
Do you need new containers to store your new foods such as lunch boxes, bottles, food wrap, freezer bags or other food storage containers?
Check all your herbs & spices, tinned food, packaged food – are they all in date or have some almost expired? You’ll be surprised there’s usually something lurking in a cupboard or a spice-rack that's already past its use by date.
How about any oils? I found it easier to simplify to just three:
- olive oil – for cooking
- extra virgin olive oil – for drizzling and dressings
- cold pressed organic coconut oil - for cooking
Check your fridge – give your fridge a huge clear out and check for condiments, sauces and pickle jars for those near their expiry date.
Be mindful of the following which can be found in packaged foods such as cereal, crisps, pre-prepared meals and condiments if they contain the following;
- trans fats - cheap chemically treated oils (partially hydrogenated vegetable oils) with no nutritional value
- food colouring - added to make food appear more attractive
- emulsifiers - added to make things stick or bind together
- stabilizers - added to prevent foods separating again
- gelling agents - added to give a gel like consistency
- flavour enhancers - added widely in processed foods to make things taste better eg monosodium glutamate
- preservatives - added to help keep foods safe to eat for longer (improve shelf life)
- sugars or sweeteners - added to sweeten food
You could be especially careful of the amount of sugars in these foods especially ingredients such as high fructose corn syrup. This type of sugar has no nutritional value it's just empty calories.
The food manufacturing industry is so competative now that they think in terms of what they can add into the foods to make it as desirable as possible to consumers and also how to increase the products shelf life rather than considering how can they ensure the food is fresh, wholesome and nutricious and delicious.
Ultimately, it's your choice and while none of us are perfect thinking about these things carefully can help us make better food choices.
A good rule of thumb I use when shopping in the supermarket is that if I can’t pronounce it and if it’s not a whole food then just don't buy it. This will make a huge difference to the quality of the food and ingredients you buy and it's hands down great knowing that you're not filling you or your family with junk.
If there are items you like as a treat then it's fine to have them occasionally. If you think 80/20 this can help. Think as well of all the hard work you're doing by creating new habits. Keeping to this will help you reach your goals and still allow you to eat some of those naughty things every now and then.
You're not trying to be perfect here, you should just be moving at your own pace in the right direction and getting used to small changes week by week until you find what works for you.
In our next lesson we'll be putting it all together for you by giving you some of my favourite recipes to try!
TaTa for now - I'm off to drink more tea.