Being healthy can be bad ass

Too many people still think that health is for hippies.

Too many people still think that health is for hippies.

It’s as though you have to be this petite little 20-something female yogi to enjoy a green smoothie, or a quinoa salad.

Or you have to be a middle-aged woman to buy whole grains.

Is health only for those people who don’t have a life and have to lock themselves in their house every weekend and meditate so as to not succumb to any temptations or consume any potentially toxic foods?

Ha!

Everybody needs a life and everyone needs enjoyment.

I don’t care if you’re a bad-ass biker boy or a big workout buff who likes his meat and potatoes. I don’t care if you’re the one who drinks the most booze or smokes the most cigarettes or eats the most crap. It’s time to step up your game.

According to the heart and stroke foundation, one Canadian dies every seven minutes from heart disease or stroke.

This is a pretty scary statistic just in itself. But what’s more scary is that you have the power to prevent this.

And it starts with what you’re putting in your mouth.

A diet higher in plant-based foods gives the body a high dose of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and enzymes, and they all have cancer-fighting properties, cholesterol-lowering affects, and contribute to a higher likelihood of avoiding many illnesses and diseases that are prevalent in our society.

According to Dr. Gabriel Cousens, a plant-based diet leads to one-10th of the incidences of heart disease and one-quarter the amount of cases of diabetes.

So don’t tell me you don’t know how to make a smoothie or a simple salad. There are so many resources online to find whole food recipes and how to make them.

You know that you can be doing better with the way you eat.

It’s time to get out a piece of paper, look up some recipes, write out a simple shopping list and get yourself some good food.

Hit the gym, go to the pool or just get outside for a walk.

Are you ever going to be allowed to consume sugar, pop, alcohol, smoke cigarettes or eat fast food?

Yes. If you haven’t noticed, nobody can tell you what you can or can’t do.

It’s all you. You define the rules. It’s not about being perfect.

It’s about being better.

Everyone has the capacity to eat better. So redefine who you are to include someone who is active in some way and knows how to make a healthy meal.

Stay your bad-ass self and just eat better — you’re allowed to be healthy, too.


Asian Bok Choy Salad

10 oz. rice noodles

2-3 stalks celery, sliced diagonally

3-4 cups bok choy, sliced thinly

2-3 green onions, sliced lengthwise, then diced

1 carrot, grated

¼ cup cashews, chopped

Dressing

2 tbsp sesame oil

1 clove garlic, minced

½ tsp. ground cumin

2 tsp. ginger, fresh, minced

2 tbsp rice vinegar (or lemon juice)

2 tbsp tamari soy sauce

1 tbsp maple syrup or honey

Cook noodles and drain. Mix dressing and toss with mixed vegetables and noodles. Serve at room temperature.

Source: Enlightened Eating

Kristin Fraser, BSc, is a registered holistic nutritionist and local freelance writer. Her column appears every second Wednesday. She can be reached at kristin@somethingtochewon.ca

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