By Devon Chappell –
Hello, good morning, and welcome to another sparkling era of new opportunity to establish good health for the coming year, assuming you are the type who sees the new year as a grand opportunity to start again.
As you prepare to begin your new health regime, take time to reflect on the cliché of “resolutions” and rather than just resolving to do something, try to really understand one must breathe, build, and honour each day. Rather than making some stupid promise to ourselves that this year will be better, we can try to achieve that personal goal one day at a time. How did those resolutions from 2015… 2014…2013… work out for you? Did you gain that healthy lifestyle? Lose weight? Actually manage to be happier or more respectful to your mother, finish that book? Are you seeing a pattern here? Don’t be too hard on yourself; it’s only reality and we all make mistakes.
Often what I write is a reflection of my own challenges along with accomplishments on my personal journey from the depths of what I consider was a lifestyle of unhealthy filth to my new lifestyle as a human with vibrant, shiny eyes. How else would I be able to advise and encourage a sense of harmony-for-health?
It’s astonishing what doing a small thing for oneself each day can do for a person, whether it be through exercise, food, yoga, communication, writing or reading, music, or dancing. But one thing that can have one of the deepest impacts on one’s ability to do any of these things is food! Good food strengthens all other systems in our bodies allowing us to respond well to all situations.
Usually I base this article on some specific “superfood” along with information on that food’s nutritional facts, usages, and effects on the body. Some, if not most, of the foods I have written about you may not have heard of and that can make them hard to find as you shop. But perhaps there’s something easier you could be doing every day…
First a few words on superfoods. Wikipedia states the term, “superfood,” is a marketing term used to describe foods with supposed health benefits. The Macmillan Dictionary defines them as foods considered good for your health and that may even help with some medical conditions. The Oxford Dictionary says they are a nutrient-rich food considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being.
What do I say? All food is superb! Some of them, of course, are more potent than others, denser in nutrients, but what about those things on your day-to-day grocery list? Taking into consideration the things you buy daily really matters when it is your health at stake.
Our eyes and taste buds have sometimes been mislead into thinking some things that look or taste great are nourishing, when in fact they are potentially doing a lot of harm. Food that is naturally brilliant in colour, fresh, and full of life, be it from the ground, the sea, or the sunshine is spectacular for those very senses that advertising has sometimes been able to mislead. For instance, the eyes require vitamin A, so if you find things like sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, or kale, beautiful! You’re on the right track!
People are often misinformed when it comes to nutrition and diet. In fact, many are actually afraid of the often-misused word, “diet.” But diet is just a term used to describe one’s personal selection of foods. Food choices can improve one’s health and physical condition, help with weight loss, or simply better one’s day-to-day operation; or they can do the opposite. Don’t be put off by the word diet; instead, embrace it as a personal choice. Some people’s diets do consist of chips, soda, steaks, smokes, and sweets. To me that is insane and would slowly and literally shut down one’s system, but again, that is a personal choice. So drop the idea of “diet” as a strict regime one must follow and embrace personal choice that helps your body feel good every day.
One of the easiest and quickest ways to include a beautiful array of foods in one’s diet is in a salad! Add whatever leafy greens, veggies, nuts, seeds, and fruits into a bowl and love life. The best part is adding a healthy dressing. Mmmm. Here’s one I’ve created and kept secret until now. It’s become a bit of a staple in many of my dishes. Feel free to add or remove any ingredients, and I’m not going to give you any measurements, being as I’ve only ever gone by taste, so have fun! (Don’t be afraid to sprinkle some spirulina on top for an added health kick!)
Devon’s Secret Dressing
Raw, organic, apple cider vinegar
Oil (olive, safflower, avocado, grape seed, sesame, or coconut)
Bragg’s all-purpose soy
Organic mustard (dijon or stone ground)
Place all ingredients into a glass jar and shake it all up! Serve over whatever you fancy. This is a very versatile dressing for many dishes including rice bowls and fish.
(PS: Raw, organic, apple cider vinegar is incredible for everything! Try a splash in hot water with some organic honey everyday.)
In conclusion, “superfoods” can be relatively expensive and have possible side effects not so desired for some individuals. I do believe in consuming these foods that are highly concentrated in nutritional value, but I do understand they are not for everyone. Of course, I advocate incorporating these foods into a diet that already includes plenty of fruit, vegetables, water, nuts, grains, and healthy choices to back it up. If you do decide these select superfoods such as spirulina, chlorella, maca root, goji berries, raw cacao, and many others are a good part of your chosen path, do keep in mind that health is also about the everyday foods you can find at the grocery store (or local food co-op) that are sometimes easily ignored but will keep you super!
Devon Chappell is something of an impressionist with therapeutic hands. He holds a focus on what is real when it comes to food. He has a personal interest in nutrition and art and when he is in his element, Devon brings nature to the kitchen.