If you look hard enough on the internet you can find enough information on anything to support your opinion on the topic. So here’s my opinion on a few of the trending diets and ways of eating!
Whole30 is a way of eating that limits grains & dairy, and pushes fruits & veggies. Whole30 allows for potatoes and homemade fries, but wants you to avoid fast food fries. The concept being you’re eating whole foods rather than processed junk. This is a fairly easy reset back onto the healthy food wagon if you’ve been gone for a while. There are plenty of recipes out there and the foods are things you are familiar with. Breaking the simple carb cycle can be hard! The one thing I am not a fan of with Whole30 is that you are not allowed grains like quinoa unless you are vegetarian. To me it just seems arbitrary as to what is “allowed” and what isn’t. Whole30 is meant to be a thirty day reset to help you step away from the grab and go deli sandwiches and making your meals.
Paleo is a way of eating that focuses on meats, fruits, veggies, nuts, and seeds, while avoiding foods that became popular with the advent of commercial farming like grains, legumes, and dairy. And of course, all the other junk you find in the middle aisles of the grocery store. Paleo is very similar to the Whole30 concept, you just do it longer than a thirty day reset. This is still a fairly restrictive way of eating, although easy to comply with if eating out. Just know you won’t be getting a pastry when you stop to grab your morning coffee. Is this sustainable? Possibly! It would be an awesome foundation for how to shop and what to eat. Just know that you might be missing out on foods at social gatherings and potlucks.
Keto started as a medical diet to treat children with epilepsy. There are also a few studies that have been done on patients with brain cancer/tumor diagnoses. (Aimee has done A LOT of research on this and is happy to share if you’re interested!) Keto is basically a paleo diet, with strict macros of where your calories are coming from. As a way of life, many people eat keto to lose weight. When you restrict the amount of carbs going into your body, your body uses fat for energy. Keto is fairly easy to follow if you’re eating out, too. Burgers without a bun and a side salad instead of fries is easy to get almost anywhere. A downside is that companies are making “keto” foods and selling them under the guise of health, but they don’t fit the strict macros of keto, or have cane syrup in them. Women can stand to have more carbs, and their bodies will often require more during certain stages of their cycle. As a long term diet, keto is very restrictive and doesn’t leave room for watermelon or birthday cakes.
Carnivore is just what it sounds like. No veggies or carbs, just locally raised grass fed free range meat and eggs. This can be an expensive way to eat. But it really takes a lot of thinking out of the equation, all you have to do is eat meat! I don’t know much about the feasibility of a long term carnivore lifestyle. Most proponents I’m familiar with are eating this way for short periods of time like 30 days or so. Again, no fresh summer fruits on this diet!
Veganism is gaining popularity. There are many options for fake meats! But do you really want to eat them? People usually start eating vegan because they either want to eat better for the environment, or because they want to stop animal cruelty. It’s still possible to eat meat and be against feed lots and cruel practices! Local beef is absolutely better for the environment than fake meat made in a factory across the country. To make these processed products, the grains are grown and trucked in, then processed, and made into a product that is again shipped across the country to your grocery store. The environmental impact of packaging the foods and shipping them is far greater than getting locally raised meat that is processed, packaged, and sold in the same county it was raised in. The concept of veganism and eating more whole vegetables is great! I love using vegan cookbooks for meal inspiration.
Take it for what you will - if you are jumping on an eating trend, make sure you have done your research. Some ideas are fads, just as some are sustainable long term. The point of changing up your eating habits is to create a healthier relationship with your food. The food you eat should be serving you, not drawing you back from being your healthiest self. Let us know what your thoughts are, or if there is another eating fad/lifestyle out there that you have knowledge on! We would love to hear it!
In health and wellness,
It's the new year! You've maybe made resolutions or new goals for yourself regarding your health. Once again in our office, we are focusing on the chemical stressors in our lives. More specifically, we are focusing on the importance of food that supports good gut health. How does this relate to your goals? Well, I challenge you to assess the foods in your diet and see where you can add in more gut friendly foods - think fermented foods with probiotics. This is sauerkraut, beet kvass, kombucha, water kefir, miso, kimchi, yogurt, the list goes on.
(Note: I said add, not take away. It is easier to make diet changes when we tell ourselves we are "adding" things in)
The healthy probiotics in these foods add to the good bacteria in your gut. There is a direct correlation between gut health and brain health. Feeding your gut is really feeding your brain. Ever eat a really heavy pasta meal or a lot of grains or breads, and then end up feeling like you have brain fog? The quality of your food impacts the quality of your brain health.
Taking a prebiotic (check out our blog from a few weeks ago for more on this!) or a probiotic can be beneficial for your body. Ideally, you would be getting probiotics from your food instead of a capsule. Did you know one course of antibiotics can have a lasting negative impact on your gut for up to a year?!
What you eat is a chemical stressor on your body. When we talk about mitigating the stressors in your lives, we do mean assessing your diet and making changes accordingly. If you are struggling in this area and either want guidance or accountability, let us know! We are on this journey with you :)
In health and wellness,
Let's talk about something controversial.
There has been a push in our society to move towards a meat-less diet, the idea being that red meat isn't healthy for us and we're making a positive impact on the environment by decreasing the output from the mass feedlots that contribute to the carbon dioxide in the air. I am for moving away from feedlot animals for a few reasons: they are grown in unsanitary, unhealthy conditions, they are pumped full of antibiotics and hormones, and the animals live generally miserable lives.
What I am also for is not eating the synthetic meat that has now exploded onto the shelves in our grocery stores, and here's why: this "meat" is full of chemicals, additives, and preservatives (soy and genetically engineered yeast, to name a couple) to make this lab-grown product taste like a genuine burger, sausage, bacon, whatever. But have we really made a healthier choice when we choose this? We are really only trading one chemical for another.
Here is my opinion: if you're going to eat meat, eat the real stuff. But source it from a small, local ranch or farm, where they are raising the animals in an organic way. The meat tends to be grass-fed, and may be grass-finished. The quality of this meat is leaps and bounds away from the feedlot meat or the synthetic stuff.
When we talk about chemical stressors and mitigating what our bodies deal with on a daily basis, the quality of your food absolutely has an impact on this. The old adage "you are what you eat" really is true. Choosing locally sourced, organic, grass-fed meat is going to be the healthiest option. Triple L Ranch is a favorite in the office, but there is also others like Mannix and Oxbow here in the Missoula area.
If you have any questions, let us know!
In health and wellness,
The month of January we are focusing on gut health! What you eat on a daily basis absolutely plays a role in your health. Specifically what I want to talk about is something called prebiotics. These are foods that induce the growth of healthy bacteria in your gut. These are different from probiotics. Think of probiotics as the healthy bacteria, and prebiotics as the food for the healthy bacteria.
Prebiotics come mostly from carbohydrates, mostly as fiber, that we can't digest but the gut-healthy bacteria do. Foods high in prebiotics include: legumes, beans, peas, oats, bananas, berries, Jerusalem artichokes, asparagus, dandelion greens, garlic, leeks, and onions. Including these foods in your diet will ensure that you are keeping the good guys in your gut happy and fed.
Probiotics are a buzzword right now in the health community, but it is also important we are covering all of our bases when it comes to our gut, meaning that we are supporting our digestive health by eating prebiotic foods too.
In health and wellness,
Information from: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/probiotics-and-prebiotics#bottom-line