Hey progressive educators. It is summertime and if we discovered something throughout this pandemic it is that we should prioritize self-care. Meaning dwelling in a approach that results in an extended, wholesome life, and searching incredible whereas doing it. 


Whereas I’ve at all times prioritized well being and health (belonging to a number of gyms and an avid seaside volleyball participant), pre-pandemic I discovered myself chubby. As colleges, gyms, and volleyball courts shut down within the early days of the pandemic, I out of the blue had free time and appeared extra deeply into not solely train, but additionally food regimen and diet. I’m somebody who’s well being and cruelty aware and I adopted a principally vegan (typically vegetarian) food regimen. 

My Journey

Although I used to be well being and health aware, I used to be chubby. This didn’t make a lot sense. I purchased wholesome manufacturers and was not an overeater. Because the pandemic gave me free time, my analysis started with two books: Mark Hyman’s “Meals: What the Heck Ought to I Eat?” and “Genius Meals.” My eyes have been opened to all of the methods the meals business misrepresents meals for revenue. After following some quite simple recommendation, I modified my food regimen, and at this time at 53 and after going via menopause, I discover myself 25 lbs (or 20%) thinner with extra muscle, with out counting energy and with consuming scrumptious meals. An progressive educator at coronary heart, I need to share what I discovered with any of you who’re .

Be taught How!

Here is a abstract of some the methods I moved to extra healthful consuming.


I am beginning with oils as a result of there are oils we should always use commonly and others we should always keep away from. Use olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil. Avoid the oils within the chart beneath. I am beginning with oils as a result of these inflammatory oils are sometimes present in meals marketed as vegan and they’re dangerous for you.

Meals business advertising

Talking of selling, the meals business markets meals as vegan, however that usually doesn’t imply it’s wholesome. It simply does not have animals. If it is packaged, it usually has unhealthy elements, components, and oils. Bear in mind french fries and onion rings may be vegan / plant-based.

Meat options

When Past Meat and Not possible Burger got here out, I used to be past thrilled. I even appeared into investing within the corporations. What I discovered later is that these extremely processed meat options will not be wholesome for us. They’re typically excessive in saturated fats and sodium and comprise these unhealthy inflammatory oils.

Packaged / Processed meals

Keep away from them and eat entire meals. If they’re marketed as vegan or wholesome, this can be a crimson flag that they’re seemingly unhealthy. Need examples? After I was consuming principally vegan (with typically vegetarian) I discovered Tattooed Chef’s plant-based meals. Packaged meals like this made up the vast majority of my food regimen. It was solely after I discovered to learn the labels that I spotted it was not wholesome as a result of their merchandise comprise excessive sodium, an excessive amount of saturated fats, palm oil, and unsafe components like disodium diphosphate, xanthan gum, and annatto.

Do not drink your energy

Most individuals already know to not drink soda, however that is not the one drink to keep away from. Consuming fruit and veggies is significantly better than consuming / juicing. When you’ve juice you devour too many energy and lose a lot of the elements which can be so good for you. If you happen to drink alcohol, avoid drinks the place numerous sugar is added, you may at all times add your individual monkfruit or stevia-based sweetener.

Get rid of wheats and grains

Wheat, and grains are sometimes the staples of a conventional American breakfast. They’re additionally “vegan,” however they’re horrible for us. Bread, muffins, croissants, pancakes, muffins, cereal, and even oatmeal are all a no. As an alternative begin your day with a protein wealthy breakfast like eggs, avocado, mushrooms, beans, tomatoes. If you’d like one thing for a sandwich I just like the Outer Aisle Cauliflower Sandwich Thins or the Egglife wraps.

Get rid of pasta & change with these choices


Whereas a clear vegan / plant-based food regimen is a good possibility and works for many individuals, I discovered concerning the vital well being advantages that may be derived from consuming low-mercury, wild-caught fish which can be ethically raised. Whereas this doesn’t 100% align to my want to be cruelty aware, I additionally discovered that even consuming plant-based solely can displace and hurt animals, so I’m attempting to make the wisest decisions with these info in thoughts. I discovered that SMASH fish are excessive in omega 3’s and low in mercury. These are small fish and the acronym consists of the fish within the picture beneath.

Yuka App

Want to see how false the promoting is immediately? Get the Yuka App which supplies a tremendous method to see if meals is wholesome. Meals is rated on a rating of 1 -100 with 100 being one of the best. Scores are based mostly on components equivalent to quantity of saturated fats, hazardous components, sodium content material, energy, lactose, energy, and extra. As you begin utilizing the app you may uncover meals with these wholesome labels (i.e. vegan, plant-based, gluten free), usually will not be that wholesome. There is a free model of that app permitting you to scan objects, or you may pay about $15 a 12 months and sort any product in as nicely.

Screenshot of an item being scanned on the Yuka app

Wake Up & Learn the Labels

I really like Jen Smiley’s work on Wake Up and Learn the Labels. She breaks helps followers decipher the labels. She then breaks down why a few of the healthiest marketed meals (i.e. Lean Delicacies, Weight Watchers, even pickles) are horrible for us. You’ll be able to comply with her on Instagram and take heed to her podcast.

Cease counting energy

Whereas limiting energy may help to shed some pounds, you do not want to try this. If you happen to eat actual, wholesome meals, your physique will likely be satiated and you’ll shed some pounds. I obtained match by consuming as a lot wholesome and scrumptious meals as I need. It simply took a while to be taught what these meals are, and they’re normally not those the meals business markets to us as such.