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Feeling Light and Healthy Eating

February 17, 2010

I’ve been giving some simple steps for heart health as outlined by The American Heart Association in their “Life’s Simple 7 – Seven simple steps to live better.” campaign. The first two were “Get Active” and “Eat Better,” and number three is “Lose Weight,” or my more positive interpretation, “Feel Light and Healthy Eating”.

Being more active and healthy eating are the only real ways I know of to start feeling light. If the sound of “working out” feels too plodding and drudgery-like, try dancing or playing a game like basketball. And if “lose weight” feels like a command and an insult at once, then focus on feeling light by thinking of foods that have been nourished by the sun and may give you some of the light they’ve trapped in their cells. That’s right, I’m talking somewhat poetically about fruits and vegetables.

It’s a good rule to help you choose between various food choices, which one has been most recently nourished by the sun and is still close to that state? Then the difference between a highly refined and processed snack and a healthy one becomes clearer.

Unfortunately using "light” can be confusing to people, including myself. The word “light” has been used to make many food and beverage products seem healthy when they’re really not. Artificial sweeteners have been shown to have many unwanted side effects that may cause more harm than good in the long run. Natural sugars with less refinement like brown sugars and honey, in small doses, is the healthier choice.

Another food that I know supposed to help but may cause more problems is margarine and other foods that include hydrogenated oils and trans fatty acids. Great for shelf life, not so great for our bodies. Natural, heart-healthy fats like nuts, avocado, peanut butter, and olive oil, used in moderation, is the way to go. They’ve been in the sun, so they can help you look and feel lighter!

Now go trip the light fantastic!