Eating for Your Health Goals

So often patients ask: What does Chinese medicine have to say about diet?

The simple answer is balance.

Screen Shot 2015-04-05 at 9.55.56 PM

You want balance in every meal.

Each and every meal should include protein, carbohydrate, fat and, don’t forget, flavor!

When deciding how much you should consume you can use this simple guideline:

Each meal should contain a portion of protein the size of the palm of your hand, approximately a cup of carbohydrates, and small amount of high quality fat.

Imagine a freshly prepared meal consisting of a portion of tofu, fish, poultry or beef, a lovely display of leafy green vegetables and a scoop of quinoa drizzled with olive oil garnished with avocado, cilantro and lime.

IMG_1523

 

Sounds good doesn’t it?

But what if you have a very specific health goal, then how do you adjust your diet to support your intended lifestyle shift?

Here are a few examples . . .

Health goal: to reduce your overall intake of caffeine.

  1. Make sure to have protein at every meal. This will help equalize blood sugar levels and prevent weight gain as you reduce the caffeine in your diet.
  2. Reduce caffeine intake GRADUALLY a 25% decrease each week. Do not stop “cold turkey,” trust me, you will feel miserable.
  3. Replace the routine of sipping coffee with a healthier alternative. Try green tea or for even less caffeine Kukicha (twig) tea, or any tasty herbal tea with lemon ginger or peppermint. They sell sample packets so you can try a variety and decide which ones you like.
  4. Monitor your mood and energy level. This will help keep track of your progress and keep you on top of your health goal.

Health goal: to make better food choices when away from the kitchen.

  • Start with a food diary to collect the facts.  Where and when do you eat, and how does that make you feel?  You will record the time of the day, what you consumed, and how you felt.  Then it’s time to analyze your choices.  Slowly and methodically identify your unhealthy choices and make an effort to move toward more healthy foods.
  • Pack a lunch when you leave home. If possible, try to pre-plan your lunch meal by bringing leftovers from the previous night’s dinner or a homemade sandwich.
  • Find a local, organic and fresh food whenever possible.  Avoid prepackaged and processed foods. Fresh is always best!
  • Continue to monitor your progress. Reward yourself for you efforts and make course corrections along the way if you fall off track.

What is YOUR specific health goal?  

Post a comment and I will add suggestions in response.

Let’s get going TODAY on the path to a happier and healthier you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *