In the Fall of last year, I adjusted my eating habits more towards the healthy version of a fitness professional. You know, more plant based, non-processed foods, portion control, mindfulness of when I ate what and when, etc.
But it all came with balance.
I couldn't cut everything cold turkey. I'd indulge when I wanted. So, don't let this fool you. Nothing about the way I eat is perfect. Especially if you know me. Chips, cheese and salsa are my vices. And, I've been known to eat just that for dinner on some nights, aka when my husband is out of town.
I battle with good and bad choices everyday. It's a daily practice and an internal discussion I have with myself on the regular. But forgiveness is what you have to keep in mind when you're on the train of a leading a healthy lifestyle. It's just impossible to ALWAYS make the "right" decision. And, it's okay if you don't either. But, it's being able to bounce back day-to-day that will do the trick.
And, here are three natural foods that make it easy to benefit from in multiple ways.
I thought back to the earliest time in my life where I can remember using lemon for anything and it takes me back to the YMCA days when I was a kid. Anyone else use lemon juice as a sun lightener in your hair?! That stuff stung when you put it on but man did it do the trick. Blonde on blonde on blonde. I mean, those were the days. And fun fact, my husband and I were flirting around with each other back in that day. He was my childhood crush. Our story is for another time but I’ll definitely write a blog on it soon.
Besides lemon juice, I also LOVE anything food related that has lemon in it. Lemon cookies, lemon bars, lemon pie, lemon ice cream. Lemon, lemon, lemon. I just love the sweet taste of it so much.
I’m not much of a cook (like at all) let alone a baker, so when it comes to slicing up a lemon, you’ll only find me using them regularly in the water I drink. Mainly at restaurants but occasionally I’ll remember to buy them and use them at home.
My favorite is to slice up a ¼ of one and put it in a coffee mug full of water and place it in the microwave for a minute. I don’t drink coffee and I find sipping on something warm heats me up a bit. Especially on cold days. I also ask for this hot drink at a restaurant when I’ve eaten way too much. It helps to digest the food faster so I’m not so miserably uncomfortable. And, it warms me up if I’ve drank too many cold glasses of water. It’s a thing! Happens to me all the time.
Per Very Healthy Life blog, lemons have all the right benefits too that do a body good:
- Packed with Vitamin C
- Boosts energy
- Fights illness and infections
- Aids in digestion (as mentioned above)
- Rich in antioxidants
- Suppresses the appetite
So take your shot at it. At the very least, a glass of lemon water seems to do a body good. Inside and out.
Other than dropping one of these in a vodka tonic I never really knew what else they were good for! Ha! Well, other than key lime pie. But, surprisingly, they’re packed with a lot of the same benefits as lemons and then some.
Per Organic Facts, when applied externally on the skin, it’s acids scrub out dead cells and cure dandruff, rashes, and bruises. Bruises people! I bruise so easily. I’ll have to test this out and report back.
Check out more of their benefits here:
- Aids in weight loss
- Relieves constipation
- Manages diabetes
- Treats gout, arthritis and eye degeneration (all things I’m susceptible to from my arthritis disorder)
- Reduces fever – acidic fruits in general do!
Apple Cider Vinegar
Honestly, vinegar makes me gag just by the smell. So the thought of ingesting it sounded disgusting. The only cooking effort I’ve made with vinegar was with my grandma’s homemade Italian dressing. Well, semi homemade, but, it’s so delish that I recommend it big time. Recipe below.
Italian Dressing Recipe
To prepare fresh dressing use the Good Seasons Cruet (or container with tight fitting lid):
- Pour red wine apple cider vinegar to -V- line (1/4 c.); pour water to -W- line (3 Tbsp.).
- Add contents of package; cover. Shake vigorously until well blended.
- Add olive oil to -0- line (1/2 c.); cover. Shake again until blended.
To Prepare with Less Oil...Complete steps 1 and 2 as directed above. In step 3 substitute 1/4 cup water and 1/4 cup oil in place of 1/2 cup oil; shake as directed.
Dressing Storage Tips. To maintain freshness, refrigerate dressing up to 4 weeks. Ingredients in dressing will separate when refrigerated, especially when prepared with olive oil. To reuse, let dressing stand at room temperature about 1 hour and then shake just before serving.
ACV is also all the rage with weight loss and appetite suppression. But it’s not all scientifically proven that these are all effective or safe so approach with caution.
I’ve personally used it to treat blemishes. Check out my skin care game for more info on how and why.
Drinking it was last on my list but Tone It Up has a morning shot built into their nutrition plan I tested out and it was actually pretty good. Masking it with some other sweet ingredients like pineapple juice, lime, and honey did the trick. Did it suppress my appetite? Maybe. But other good habits play a part in portion control and over snacking so don’t rely on this to solve all your problems.
Other benefits found via Cosmo ('cause you know, Cosmo is the beauty bible):
- Reduces bloating
- Aids in weight loss
- Cleans fruits and veggies – I’m totally trying this!
- Kills bad breathe
- Lowers blood pressure