When I look back over 2012 I can’t help but marvel at the number of items I gave up. Of course for everything I gave up, I either added something new or changed the way I did things.
Here’s a list of some of the things I gave up last year:
- Tossed out the microwave oven. With much encouragement from my son (after he did extensive research on the dangers of microwaves), I got rid of my microwave and replaced it with a toaster oven. The only time I miss the microwave is when I have to melt butter or warm the gel pack heating pad.
- Removed all products with trans fat, high fructose corn syrup , MSG and the derivatives thereof. That was a very painful day in my life, but it was well worth the pain.
- Dropped processed foods. There wasn’t much processed food left after getting rid of the items listed above. Once you get rid of the chemicals, you’re pretty much left with real food. That’s why so many healthy people advise “JERF.” Just eat real food!
- Momentarily gave up meats, but added them back. When it comes to meats, I’ve given up eating meats from sources that were given antibiotics, grain and not allowed to roam freely. In other words, I bypass the commercially grown meats and opt for farm-raised meats. The same goes for eggs and milk.
- Gave up wheat and most grains. After reading the book Wheat Belly by Dr. William Davis, I tried giving up wheat for a short period of time and then adding it back again. It didn’t take long to realize I should permanently remove wheat from my diet, so I did.
- Tossed out cooking oils such as corn oil, canola oil and vegetable oil and replaced them with coconut oil, butter, olive oil and tallow, which I render from suet.
- Threw away white sugar and replaced it with coconut palm sugar. The one thing I have to remember, however, is that sugar is sugar. Therefore, I use it sparingly. The same goes for honey and syrup.
- Dumped the deodorant (can’t believe I didn’t write a post about that). Somewhere around mid-year, I tossed my deodorants in favor of a homemade natural combination of baking soda and cornstarch. I’ve got no complaints (and after a spinning class, I smelled a lot better than a lot of my classmates).
- Gave up commercial soaps and shampoos in favor of Dr. Bronners All-in-One natural soap.
Things I’ve added in 2012
- Increased the plant population in my home. There are a lot more snake and areca palm plants in my home this year than there was last year.
- Experimented with new foods and vegetables. Each week I pick up a new veggie to give it a try. It usually takes one or two experiments to find my groove.
- Nut breads, nut pie crusts, nut pancakes and a whole host of nut recipes. Nuts have replaced flour in my house so we experiment with various nuts to find the ones that work best for each recipe.
- A seasonal container garden in which I grow a variety of vegetables.
- Homemade pickles and fermented foods. I’m still experimenting with this but seeing how simple it is to make pickles, I can’t believe I wasted my time and money purchasing them at the store.
- Vitamin supplements. I’ve always been a huge fan of vitamin C and B, but I think vitamin D has joined the ranks of my favorite vitamins. Living in the northeast, we don’t get full sun year ‘round so vitamin D supplementation is important. To the list of vitamins, I make sure to take magnesium
Going forward in 2013
There’s a lot to discover and a host of experiments to perform. The older I get the more I believe that food should be our medicine and the first line of defense for all conditions.
That statement made me think of a conversation I had the other day. The person I spoke with has a different mindset than I do. This person discussed a list of ailments and the associated drug that was supposed to take care of each problem. All the while this person was listing each ailment, I was thinking of the vitamin, food or exercise that would resolve the issue.
Of course, as I tried to make a few holistic suggestions, I could feel a coolness fill the air so I let it go. Unfortunately, the person opted to take the litany of drugs that came with a host of side effects (which will take more drugs to cure the side effects).
The holistic approach takes a little longer to achieve the wanted outcome, but there are no unwanted side effects. As a matter of fact, the holistic approach treats the whole body. This person might have discovered unexpected benefits such as improved energy, better sleep and healthier skin.
Life happens one day at a time. Each day we have the choice to develop a small habit of health or a small habit of illness. Doing something once or twice may not bring harm or health, but repeating that one thing every day will determine your final outcome. Change your habits and you change your health. It is my choice to become healthier in 2013, one habit at a time.