Welcome to Daily Healthy Eating! I’m happy you’re here.
I try not to be a fanatic, but I AM kind of a fanatic about healthy eating! Not saying I’m perfect – far from it, as I crave some very decadent junk food now and then. But 99% of the time, I eat only healthy whole foods.
In recent years there has been more and more focus on healthy eating – which, in my view, is a very good thing. Being an older person, the processed food explosion began in my childhood and has grown exponentially since then.
My name is Jacque, and my purpose here is to help inform those who care, about how to eat healthy every single day, for optimum health and a trim body. The emphasis will be on low carb eating, but overall it will be about clean eating of whole foods and weaning ourselves off processed food, fast food, and sugar.
I remember one of the first – and revolutionary – prepackaged meals, the “TV Dinner”! How many of you remember those? They consisted of poor quality chicken or beef, watery mashed potatoes with a few drops of gravy, and either peas or corn. And was there even a small unrecognizable dessert? I don’t remember for sure, but it seems like there was. They came in compartmentalized aluminum trays that were heated in the oven. They were terrible…and we loved them!! The only good thing about them is the portions were very small.
Since they were so well received, the food industry began to change as more companies realized they could profit from creating crappy, convenient food for the masses. The fact that this food required a long shelf life, preservatives and artificial ingredients soon took center stage. Fast food joints weren’t far behind and….you know the rest of the story. Soon few knew, or remembered, how to cook and waistlines and butts and portions grew…and grew…and grew.
I am disgusted with the way we have been mislead for the past 40+ years about nutrition and what constitutes a healthy diet. Thankfully, we are at last beginning to regain our senses and realize that there is something even better than “TV Dinners” and fake food – REAL FOOD. Ta-da!!! So this site concentrates on learning about, cooking, and actually eating whole foods again.
When my husband was diagnosed with lung cancer in early 2010, I started researching the effects of diet on cancer, and it was eye-opening. It seems like common sense to me now, but I didn’t make the connection, as maybe you haven’t either, that everything we put into our bodies impacts our health, either positively or negatively. My heart sank when I read that sugar feeds cancer, as my husband was, and always had been, very lean, but he ate primarily carbohydrates and sweets, which basically is all sugar to our bodies.
I began paying more attention to what we were buying and eating, so I began poring over the ingredients listed on the cans, boxes and bags of food I was purchasing. And what I was finding was horrifying to me. The lists were miles long and most of the ingredient didn’t even sound like food! Worse yet, sugar and an evil form of it – high fructose corn syrup – was in EVERYTHING!!
I began a massive campaign to feed him curative type foods, but it was really a losing battle, because when he was hospitalized he was given – by the doctor and dietitian, of course – Ensure – to try and keep him nourished. Read the ingredients on that the next time you’re in the store. It is ALL sugar!
Of course, my husband did not survive his cancer and died in December 2010, just 5 months after his diagnosis. (Isn’t it about time we started seeing the majority of people surviving cancer?!)
After that trauma I found myself repeatedly asking such questions as:
- “Why are so many people overweight?”, or
- “Why does it seem like everyone has diabetes? I never used to hear about it, and now every other person is afflicted with this illness.”, or
- “Why are so many people being diagnosed with incurable cancer” And why is it incurable?”, or
- “Eggs and butter used to be good for us, then they were bad for us, now they are good for us again!”, or
- “Bacon, bacon everywhere! I love it, but I isn’t it bad for us?”
Have you ever asked yourself the same questions?
At that point, I started reading everything I saw in magazines, newspapers or online about food and nutrition. Even though I was a skinny little girl, I began having intermittent weight issues in my late 20’s that have plagued me most of my adult life. From reading all these articles, I learned that the sugar and other “filler” ingredients in processed food were definitely contributing to my weight issues, and I started trying to eat better.
However, I am human, and grief and stress made me very vulnerable to comfort foods. So I still ate a lot of pasta and bread, which I LOVE, and found myself having more and more sweets as snacks in the evenings.
When my annual physical last fall revealed that I was obese (I knew I was overweight, but obese?? At only 5 feet tall, I really am just too short for my weight), and my blood work showed I was pre-diabetic so the doctor wrote me a prescription for a statin drug, I knew I had to take charge of my life.
I DO NOT want to take statin drugs – or any other medications – unless it is absolutely necessary, so I refused. My doctor agreed to my desire to try to lower my cholesterol, triglycerides and A1C with diet and exercise. I knew a low carb diet would work, as my cholesterol level had lowered on the Atkins diet years before! I didn’t have serious health issues then though, so my commitment was greater than it had ever been.
Six months later, while I had only lost 12 pounds, I was down nearly two clothing sizes, and my blood work results were greatly improved – such that the doctor didn’t even bring up statin drugs. Yes!!! I still have about 30 more pounds to lose though, so I am committed to healthy, low carb eating for my lifetime. Since then I have been improving my diet, eating very few processed foods, and trying to eat organic foods whenever I can afford to.
I believe healthy eating should consist of basically a lower carb diet whether one is overweight or not. Extreme low carb for weight loss requires eating no more than 20 carbs per day, and anything below 100 carbs per day is considered low carb. The average person eats upwards of 300 carbs per day, and those who have a sugar romance going on, or any food addiction, are likely eating 600+ carbs per day. That is a recipe for disaster.
Processed foods and sugar cause health issues for everyone, and most folks will begin to show signs of health problems sooner or later if they continue eating them. I’m not saying that no one should ever eat pasta or bread or sweets again, but I am saying that they should be a minimal part of your diet.
My primary focus here will be on low carb ways of eating, since we are learning that the low fat, high carbohydrate food pyramid was essentially a scam and far from healthy for anyone. While not strictly or necessarily low carb, I will also share information on the Paleo and Mediterranean diets, because healthy eating is good for everyone, and those two eating plans offer many excellent health benefits, as well as some really delicious food! And wine!
Topics such as health issues, the best healthy diet plans, exercise tips (not too much of that, since I hate exercise), handy products I have discovered to help with easy meal prep, and recipes will be covered in-depth.
I hope you will join me in a healthy eating lifestyle, and I will guide you along the way as I share information, tips, and recipes. I love to cook, so there will be a LOT of recipes! I would love to hear about your favorite way of eating as well, so email me any time and I will respond personally.
WARNING: If you don’t like to cook and prepare your own food and you prefer to have frozen meals, fast food, shakes and bars, and lots of candy, cake, cookies and ice cream, you may not like what I have to say. I especially don’t think those are the best things to eat if you want to lose weight. Real food rocks!!
All the best,
P.S. I even feed my dogs mostly a low carb diet! They love it and have lost weight too. One of their special treats is green beans.
That is Cooper on the left, and Grayson is on the right.