23 Mar 2011

Health: My Precious.

As you know, health is an important topic to me. Six years ago, when I hit 30, I decided to stop taking it for granted and turned my life around.

Since then, I've managed to live a good and healthy life, enjoying what is most important to me, while cutting out what doesn't matter.

I would never give up chocolate, or good wine, but I can't remember the last time I had a soft drink or a crappy candy bar.

I eat cake at parties, but wouldn't buy it for myself unless I had a very good reason. I don't keep sweets in the house either - with the exception of gorgeous, bitter, dark Belgian chocolate. I cook from fresh as much as possible and buy my yoghurt unsweetened.

I'm by no means a well-organised, disciplined or exceptionally consistent person, but I am stubborn and I recognise quality of life when I have it.

Never will I go back to the way I used to lead my life. My body is not going to last forever, but as long as I'm alive, I will treat it with love, care and respect.

About half a year ago, a friend pointed me to a video about the effect of sugar on our health. It confirmed a lot of what I had observed and experienced during those 6 years. It motivated me to reduce my sugar intake even further, as close to zero as I could, without feeling I was missing out.

It's been easier than I'd expected. The less sugar I eat, the less I crave it. I still eat cake at parties, and have my daily piece(s) of dark chocolate, but that's about it.

When I really want a sweet drink, I make my own lemonade with fresh lemon or lime, sparkling water and drops of stevia.

Today, at the start of spring and in the spirit of good intentions and fresh beginnings, I want to share that video with you.

Regardless of what you do, it can never hurt to be informed.

Just remember, health is not about guilt, discipline and 'have to's'. It's about finding a balance in life that works for you and adds to your overall happiness.

Here's the video. The speaker is Robert H. Lustig, Professor of Clinical Pediatrics and a specialist on childhood obesity.

If you want to exchange ideas, inspiration or recipes, drop me a line!
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  1. I wish I could do the same... But I still have the idea that it is so difficult and time consuming to eat 'healthy'. I think you'll have to come over to our place and instruct me on how to do it, for at least one week! To convince me it is possible (without doing too much effort)!

  2. By the way, I know I still have to watch this video and comment on it, but finding a 'free' time-slot of 1h30 is rather difficult these days!

  3. @Lieve I don't think it's extremely difficult, but it isn't easy either, because it requires a change in lifestyle, in lots of small habits, routines and environment.

    For me, the most important thing was finding out which ingredients or types of food I needed to have - or avoid having - in the house.

    Maybe we can have a few sessions over the summer ;-)

  4. Eating healthy is definitely a must, but it's a tough thing to follow on. Although I eat home cooked meals 99% of the time, I still find myself eating junk food to stave off hunger at work. I really need to change this habit soon.

  5. Hi nutschell :-)

    I'm a strong believer that what we do 80 or 90% of the time is more important than what we do the remaining 10 or 20%, which makes a healthy life much more feasible and relaxed.

  6. I've turned my eating around too, when I hit the 80 kg mark on the scales and almost threw a fit.
    I looked at what I ate on a daily basis and cut back on that. For me it was bread and all the lovely delicious varieties it comes is (especially the pastries at the bakkery plus all the pies and cakes I bake myself)
    Cutting out the sugar is difficult the first week, but then you see results and it's motivating.
    It's making that first step and turning the switch in your head.
    I am waiting for a sports injury to heal and then can get back to doing some exercise. So far the pounds are slowly shedding and with spring arriving, the feeling is great. And I can get those nice pants back on without having to old my breath or looking like a tight sausage.
    Changing the habbit is a start. But I don't go overboard. there are too many nice things in our food and drink life that I just can't quit.
    It's the 90 % what I eat that is important and if I keep that healthy and low on sugar, that is a lifestyle I can uphold.

  7. Oh yes, our delicious bakeries ... I enjoy the scent but try to stay away from them. It got easier since I started baking my own bread.

    You're so right about that first step. Just dive in, and take every day as it comes from there. Like you said, it's important to find a healthy lifestyle you can keep up.


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