By Randy Moore, Publisher – I’ve lived in Sarasota County since 1999. I’ve learned a lot about health, nutrition, fitness, longevity, medicine, healthcare delivery, human psychology and related topics. Not just from my personal experiences and ongoing study, but also through many relationships with health educators, clinicians and business owners.
Each of us is a product of our daily habits. That includes what we eat, how we spend our time (activities) and our prevailing thoughts. We can use our experiences, research findings and common sense to form new habits, and it’s never too late to start. Much of my progress began in earnest in my 50’s. Learning to eat better and exercising daily has provided me with a solid foundation. Feeling younger requires good food, daily exercise and a positive mindset.
In this article, I’m going to focus on the eating component of healthy living. I’ll expand on the other variables in future articles. Eating fresh organic veggies and fruit is the most important decision you can make regarding your health. It’s the cornerstone of preventative medicine. Organic food has more nutrients, more antioxidants and less harmful chemicals including pesticides. That means a stronger immune system.
Organic food is more expensive, but it’s a smart investment. A good strategy as we age is to eat more nutritious organic food while lowering our total calories. It’s also important to reduce processed foods overloaded with salt, sugar and saturated fat. Do your best to replace red meat and chicken with legumes (beans, peas and lentils), salmon, veggies, nuts, seeds, and whole grain pasta, rice, quinoa and couscous. You can get all the protein you need from veggies and other food items.
I make a big batch of tasty bean, pasta and veggie soup that serves as my main source of meals. I freeze 7 individual containers with two robust servings each. I complement the soup with organic whole wheat bread covered in hummus. I also enjoy meals at places that offer healthy food choices like Mission Organic Café, Mango Bistro, Cocoa Yoga Café, and Seed To Table Vegan Eatery.
I also consume more veggies and fruit through blending. Every other morning, I make a fresh smoothie featuring 1.3 liters of a combination of mostly organic kale, spinach, chard, cucumber, celery, carrots, mushrooms, broccoli slaw, lemon, and one or two in-season fruits. I add a cup of OJ, a shot of kombucha, water and a nutrient-packed green powder with probiotics. On the other days of the week, I alternative two eggs with spinach, mushrooms and cheese with yogurt mixed with granola, 3-4 nuts, seeds and blueberries.
My treats include small oatmeal cookies, chocolate covered almonds and occasional ice cream. I also enjoy sushi, strips of bacon and slices of turkey once or twice a month. Our grandmothers were right. Moderation is a form of wisdom.