*Updated August 2015
The question I get asked the most is: what do I myself eat, and what do I feed my family?
Technically now we are all Gluten Free, Sugar Free, Yeast Free, Dairy Free; plant based diet with some red meat, poultry and eggs, and lots of fish. Most importantly we try to eat organic as much as we can; for meat/fish/eggs – grass fed, cage free, wild. Practically no grains.
I love trying and experimenting with food and nutrition, that is my job after all, so I did try many diets, including vegan, vegetarian, macrobiotic, the Zone, glycemic index, juicing, the Adkins, raw foods, the Paleo, alkaline, South Beach, just to name a few that come to mind.
When my whole family tried to be vegan (no eggs, no milk products, no animal products at all) for about two months, we all felt great. In fact we felt better, but as the second month happened to be November we started craving heavier foods and animal proteins such as eggs and fish. Since I am very strong believer in listening to my body, we begun to occasionally incorporate these foods back into our menu. We felt better and stronger with more lasting energy.
At this time as a family, we are finally at a place where we enjoy eating and making our meals, feel great, have energy to last all day, less cravings, no one complains of feeling heavy, bloated or getting hungry an hour after a meal.
I also believe location, climate, season and even your heritage play a critical role. We are in New England, and so when it gets colder we eat warmer cooked meals, more soups, hot cereal (not for my, I try to stay away from grains), seasonal fruit, vegetables, fish, poultry, eggs, lots of tea, etc. Konstantin (my husband) and I were both raised in Russia and that is the food we grew up with. We also eat potatoes. When it gets warmer we juice all the time, make smoothies, eat more salads, tons of berries and some sweet fruit, and incorporate as many raw recipes as possible.
So here it is, the break down of my nutrition goals for myself and my family:
- My number one and the most important goal is to be happy and at peace with all and any decisions I make. If I feel like ice cream I buy this amazing Coconut Bliss Ice Cream and enjoy some, if I feel like coffee I make myself a latte with almond/soy/coconut milk, or get a Starbucks soy latte and it makes my day. When we are out, we eat whatever we feel like taking into account food sensitivities, allergies, etc. By the way I find that the better you feel and the healthier you get, the better and the healthier your food choices become.
- Second most important goal is to incorporate as many vegetable into our diet as possible. Eating primarily plant-based diet with mostly vegetables, berries and fruit. The reason we do not have grains any more is that non of us really felt great eating grains regularly (even soaked and/or fermented).
- Incorporate as much raw produce as possible. We eat elaborate beautiful salads (example of one) daily, have smoothies for breakfast with frozen kale, water, almond/rice/coconut milk and a variety of fruits and super-foods.
- Eat seasonally.
- Buy mostly organic, locally grown, grass fed, cage free, wild, etc.
- Rotate! do not eat the same thing, even if it is very healthy, every day. Especially with grains and starchy vegetables, if you eat grains, rotate between quinoa, brown rice, buckwheat, potatoes and yams/sweet potatoes.
- We do use supplements on and off, depending on various factors – B12, D3, K2, Omega 3. Magnesium. We no longer use multivitamin, after reading this article my husband started taking Juice Plus and after much research I did switch whole family on it, but we only take it during the winter months when amount of fresh local produce is limited.
Please do not diet, but develop a healthy wholesome way of eating that makes you feel good and keeps you healthy, balanced, well and happy. Diets do not make people happy!
To your Health!