Wow. Is it really getting worse?
Back in 2006 in my blog post “Obesity Crisis Even More Scary” I reported research out of the UK that by 2010 14 million Britons would be dangerously overweight (that’s about a third of the people in the UK).
In this article I am going to give you some real-world, actionable, sensible and easy strategies for making sure this never happens to you or anyone you care about.
But first, I want to acknowledge that change IS starting to happen. I just hope it’s not too late.
Maybe the changes should have started happening 20 years ago when we were still being told to drink 500ml of milk per day and eat red meat daily, BUT I think the world is now slowly changing.
And I think there are finally some changes coming from the top down – something I never thought would happen.
Don’t Eat Red Meat?!
Today, just as I arrived at ‘work’ (at the moment is my local cafe, thanks guys, while I am STILL waiting for the internet to be installed in my new house!) and on the front page of the Herald Sun was this:
..which was always going to pique my interest.
I wasn’t expecting this – I was SHOCKED
The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) of Australia (a Government Agency) are actually moving in the right direction and hats off to them!
Check out this diagram they put in the paper:
FRUIT CONTAINS SUGAR, and NO, FRUCTOSE IS NOT DIFFERENT FROM OTHER SUGARS
Personally I’d have liked to have seen it look like this, but it’s a great improvement.
OK, don’t laugh at my art skillz. I stopped doing art at school when I was 14 to focus on, heh, literature. So that gives you licence to laugh at any of my writing.
But the main point here is that there isn’t that much difference between my chart and the ‘official’ NHMRC pie.
The main difference being that I pinched a bunch of space from their grains and cereals section, merged the meat and dairy into ‘everything else’ and gave fish it’s own little home.
But THIS is the REAL Issue
Let’s face it, we could argue the merits of different approaches to health all day long. Let’s just focus on the real issue for a while.
MOST people don’t eat well at all. They just don’t. And they don’t seem to be changing, they seem to be getting worse.
That’s the trend. It’s getting worse.
Admittedly, all statistics can be manipulated to create a headline (not mine of course…), but the facts are that we’re still getting LESS healthy.
Look around. You can’t deny it.
The Real Reason Why: Easy, Convenient, Done For You
That’s what we all want. We’re busier than ever, more tired than ever, more stressed than ever and so all we want is:
- Done For Me
In 2007 I was doing some work with one of the biggest beverage brands in the world (guess) and this was the outcome of the hundreds of thousands of dollars of research they had conducted.
This was the biggest consumer trend.
And I believe it 100%.
And if THEY (the big beverage brand) knew this – all the other food and drink companies would too. In fact, they’ve known it for years, this just super-proved it.
So the more time goes on, the busier we get, the more unhealthy, refined and convenient foods will be created and promoted to us.
And the food companies get better and better at doing it.
Look at these two examples:
– Microwaved ‘steamed’ salmon in sweet soy sauce
– Microwaved Honey Mustard Chicken & Parsnip Mash
These are incredibly unhealthy meals. But LOOK AT THE MARKETING!
They’re toting one of your five-a-day in the chicken dish. Believe me, if you’re only getting ONE of your five-a-day from your main meal of the day and thats coming in the form of frozen, then microwaved parsnip – you’re in big trouble.
Step-by-Step: Convenient, Easy & Done for You Health and Alkalinity!
Here is my seven-steps to getting to your full health potential, buzzing energy and vitality and guaranteeing the same for your loved ones!
- Get More Greens (the cheats way): I posted a guide to exactly this just a few days ago. It all came about from me asking my readers this question:
“What is the most powerfully alkaline thing you can do?”
I got loads of good answers – but none hit it exactly.
The most powerful, important, lifechanging thing you can do is eat 5-7 serves of GREEN FOODS every day.
How? Here’s how I make it convenient, easy and as done for you as possible:
1) Have a salad with every meal: carry on eating what you’d normally have eaten, but just add a side salad (no unhealthy dressings though!). This TOTALLY takes the pressure off but the cumulative effect of having several salads a day will have a big impact.
2) Disguise green foods: you can shave broccoli heads with a knife over foods or into pasta sauce giving you heaps of broccoli, but you can’t see, taste or smell it. OR make pasta sauce by blending tomatoes with steamed pumpkin, broccoli, spinach, watercress etc. When it’s all blended down it still tastes very rich and tomato-ey, but you’ve got a heap of green foods in there too!
3) Get into Sprouts: sounds weird but it’s SO worth it – sprouts are sprouted seeds of plants such as broccoli which, when harvested at the sprout stage, contain all (or more) of the nutritional content of the fully grown plant – this means you can easily eat one handful and get a HUGE hit of nutrients. I’ve blogged heaps about sprouts (and have a guide coming) so click here to read all about sprouts.
4) JUICE: by having a fresh green juice every day or so you are getting 5-7 serves in just that ONE drink! This one change will revolutionise your health.
Remember: Making sure you up your green food consumption from 0-1 times per day to 5-7 times per day is easy and it will blow your mind the difference it makes.
Oh, and the other ninja trick is to enjoy the wonder of steamed spinach! You can seriously get 2x serves of greens each day just by lightly steaming spinach, adding a little dressing and it wilts down to about 2 mouthfuls.
- Get Oiled Up: this is absolutely critical and often overlooked. Yet again, it’s convenient, easy and done for you. It’s just that most people don’t realise.
One of the big ah-ha’s that The Age pulls from the NHMRC research is the realisation from Government that AT LAST…
Avoiding All Fat is NOT Good For You!
You just HAVE to get a whole lot of omega 3, 6 and 9 (and 2x as much omega 3 as 6 & 9) to exist. It’s critical. It’s why it’s called an “essential” fatty acid.
So how do you get enough oils in your life? Well, it’s not just through having oily fish (you’d need to eat a truck load every day).
So here is the solution – delicious dressings. By having your own, homemade dressings you can ensure they are full of omega 3 – and each time you dress a salad you’re getting at least 1/3 of your daily omega 3 needs!
This sync’s in beautifully with the green foods strategy above too because I think that a dressing makes the salad. You can have a salad of JUST leaves and if the dressing rocks, the salad will go down a treat.
What I want you to do is always have at least 3 dressings you love, preprepared. There are lots of dressings in my Alkaline Diet Recipe Book and right below are links to a couple of free dressing recipes on this blog. After you’ve finished reading this I want you to make them and bottle them up and put them in the fridge.
Alongside the recipes you have, you can also simply make flavoured olive oil by bottling up some good quality olive oil with any of the following: basil, rosemary, garlic, chilli or thyme.
Get creative – it will be well worth it!
I also recommend taking an omega 3 supplement each day, and at least the minimum dose on the packet. This is a safety net you always want to have.
Et voila. Easy, convenient and done for you!
- Daily Easy Exercise: This is simply about momentum. I don’t want to get caught up in a debate or spend time here discussing the best kind of exercise – I just want to say – do SOMETHING every day.
This is cool because it takes the pressure off. One of the main reasons people don’t exercise is because they get intimidated by the thought of that first 30 minute run or gym session.
It gets really easy to say “I don’t have time right now, I’m too busy…tomorrow”.
But if you remove the pressure to just say – do SOMETHING today, and then do anything tomorrow – you’ll find it much easier.
Even if it’s just some squats and lunges, a 10 minute walk, some yoga. Whatever.
Just the practice of giving your body this gift on a daily basis will build confidence, momentum and some positive reinforcement.
Just do it. As they say.
- Super Hydration (how to make it easy and remember!): oh boy, if you’ve been reading my stuff for a while you’ll be rollin’ your eyes – but I won’t stop talking about hydration until everyone is hydrated!
It’s too important.
Still, a huge number of people are chronically dehydrated.
But the cool thing is there is nothing easier you can do to double your energy and rapidly improve your digestion and skin than get hydrated.
I’ve got a couple of cool guides for you below, but I recommend you check out my Definitive Guide to Alkaline Water & Hydration too.
Water Articles to Check Out:
- Allow Yourself Bad Stuff: this is a transformational shift in psychology from most ‘health advice’, but this works. It also makes getting healthy so much less pressured and even makes it fun, dare I say it! The premise here (and this is a whole series in itself) is to:
+ Focus on Getting the Good Foods IN…rather than
+ Worrying About Cutting the Bad Stuff Out
When you shift this focus, all the pressure lifts. You can still have the treats you love BUT you have to focus on the good stuff too.
When you do this there is a huge subconscious shift in your brain and it actually attracts you to healthier options. It’s very cool.
As I said this is a topic that is WAY too big for this guide, but I will get that tutorial done and out to you soon!
- Switch Easy Bad Stuff Out (The Great Swap): ahhh, another cheat sheet – and this one is even better!
This is my cheats guide to making alkaline meals – how to swap acid stuff for alkaline stuff.
Not much needs to be said about it other than IT FREAKIN’ ROCKS.
- Relax and Stop Beatin’ Yourself Up: my mantra. Remember, as always – you don’t have to be perfect.
In fact, I’d prefer it if you aimed NOT to be perfect. It will double your chances of success.
In my 9 years of teaching this stuff the #1 reason for failure is always when people try to be perfect from day one.
Don’t do it.
Take it easy, step-by-step, day-by-day. Remember, ‘baby steps’.
This week just focus on getting your green foods up. Once you’re happy with that, spend a week focusing on hydration.
Every step in the right direction is going to help you get to your goal.
Of course, if you do want to start with a cleanse, that’s cool too (read my quick start cleanse guide here) but then go back to taking it easy.
I promise, it will get you to your health goal a hell of a lot quicker and it will be a LOT easier to sustain.
How to Win the Obesity Battle
I truly believe that getting our health back on track and turning this trend towards obesity around is as simple as making healthy living MORE convenient and easy than unhealthy living.
I hope this guide has helped you to do that a little!
I truly believe that when we are healthy and vibrant it has such a knock on effect to the rest of our life and to those around us. It has a huge ripple effect.
But so does the opposite. And having a population that is 80% overweight or obese is going to have a huge impact on the positivity, output, energy and psychology of us all – it scares me (but drives me too).
Please help me with my mission – if you want to share this, post it, ‘like it’, tweet it or whatever, please do distribute it freely!
Until next time, stay happy and stay alkaline