These chocolate covered balls are only three ingredients and enough to fool you into thinking it’s that high sugar, store-bought cookie dough. But, no, these are vegan, gluten free, grain free and refined sugar-free! How do these taste so good, you may wonder. There is something about the creamy peanut butter and crunchy peanuts combined with the chocolate shell that form a consistency so perfect it will make your taste buds go wild!
Healthy eating and healthy living is definitely a lifestyle. A lot of time, effort and self-control goes into making the right decisions when it comes to food. But sometimes, it’s hard to always say “no” to your favorite things to eat. It’s easy to fall into a deceptive web of self-pity and negativity when we eat the things we consider “not good” for our health. While I’m a huge believer in healthy eating, I am also a believer in self-care and self-love. After all, you can’t take care of your body, if you’re not taking care of yourself mentally and emotionally. You may be one of those people who is often very hard on yourself. Here a few tips on Guilt-Free Eating to help you balance healthy eating with living well. In the long term, it will help you be happier and stick to your goals.
I just read through this whole exchange and I understand both (all three, rather) sides of the point. As someone who has trudged my way through binge eating disorder-turned-bulemia-turned binge again, a few short years ago, my goal was reduced to the smallest nutshell of wanting freedom with food–not freedom from it. I have been through layer after layer of motives, belief systems regarding food and exercise, victory and despair. I currently find myself in a place of peace. On the way, I was the person who could not forgive herself for her poor decisions, learning the hard way that my unforgiveness only compounded those choices and led to further destructive behavior. I think folks who identify with that mindset are the author’s intended audience. As far as Mandy’s point about tough love, I had many points at which I would have given many things to have had someone in my life offer some accountability. If I got it, I certainly did not recognize it. I married a beautiful man who had no grid for my struggles. He wrestled competitively for most of his life, a crazy high metabolism and no problems with eating whatever he wanted. His weight has not fluctuated more than 5 pounds in the 11 years I’ve known him and he has no ailments outside of a bum knee from an old injury. He does not go work out and never thinks twice about what he eats despite having a sizeable sweet tooth. His version of tough love was to tell me to put up with the trigger foods because my choices were my own. I had to climb a steep mountain to keep foods in the house that I considered triggers. There is a great chance that I would be much slimmer now if I had been feeding only myself and had total jurisdiction over the pantry’s contents. However, if not for that scenario, I may not have been nudged into deeper freedom. I found myself with an opportunity to take advantage of a rigorous situation: how do I get myself to make good choices in an environment over which I did not have total control? I learned that there is an idealism in me which is strong enough to override impulses and bad habits. I don’t even know how to articulate what it was, but the notion was implemented with the question, “would I be happier if I did eat “x” or if I did not eat “x?” Sometimes the answer has been yes, sometimes it’s been no. I had to repeatedly search deep within myself to discover what is really important to me. Asking myself this question turned a new page in my life. It isn’t my focal point anymore, but from time to time I find myself asking it again. I transitioned into a different stage where my internal dialog became “You are a grown-a!$ woman and can make a decision you’re willing to stand by,” haha. This question has not been limited to regarding my food choices, either. I have had to find my own unorthodox inspiration to pursue joy in my life. Along these lines, I learned some other things about myself. It turns out movement, not merely exercise, is something I cherish, so I make it a priority in my day. I discovered that the only reason I was so concerned with my body image was because other people made it their business to criticize me (I went through a season of heavy criticism at a sensitive age. Not all had to do with my body, but much of it did). Once I moved past being so self-conscious, I didn’t mind being a little chubby. In fact, I like my curves and they do not get in my way! Something I never expected began to occur as soon as my attitude settled into contentment. Every couple of weeks I think to weigh myself. And you know what? I am a few ounces less each time! I know that this rate of progress is not for everybody, but for me it is golden. It simply confirms that if in my mind I am free, the rest really does take care of itself. My greatest motivator is, has been and will always be joy. It doesn’t matter if there are chips, kale, cookies or quinoa in the kitchen; what matters is that neither healthy nor unhealthy food control me. Also, I have learned that it is wise to be okay whether or not those around me are.
Butter, cheese, full fat milk, yogurt, sour cream, cream, beef, pork and nuts - The common thread here is that many still are confused about fat since it was wrongfully demonized in the 1970s. The fats that are found in these foods are long chain fatty acids (LCFA) and form the core structural fats in the body comprising 75 - 80% of fatty acids in most cells. LCFA, along with monounsaturated fats (MFA) are the body’s preferred fuel source. Well conducted and replicated research has shown that these fats reduce the risk of heart disease by increasing HDL-cholesterol, lowering triglycerides and LDL-cholesterol. These fats also help to increase muscle mass and stabilize energy and mood.
Sure, you could just eat cold pizza from the night before, but if you want to experience the true joy of pizza for breakfast, try this recipe. The pizza is topped with tater tots (you can choose fried or baked, but go with fried today, obviously)—plus two kinds of bacon. Oh, and there are eggs on top too. And cheese. Breakfast of champions? Yes indeed.  

In a blog post for the International Food Information Council Foundation, Pike wrote how clean eating transformed from people wanting to eat more wholesome foods to it becoming “a privilege of consuming nicely packaged foods with influencer-approved ingredients,” and how this type of eating excludes those who don’t have access to upscale grocery stores. “[Clean eating] implies that those who don’t care to eat clean are unhealthy or lazy — they are eating ‘dirty,’” she wrote in the post.
Darshana Thacker is chef and culinary project manager for Forks Over Knives. A graduate of the Natural Gourmet Institute, she is the author of Forks Over Knives: Flavor! She created the recipes for Forks Over Knives Family and was a lead recipe contributor to the New York Times bestseller The Forks Over Knives Plan. Her recipes have been published in The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook, Forks Over Knives—The Cookbook, Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health, and LA Yoga magazine online. Visit DarshanasKitchen.com for more.
Jen Bateman, aka Dr. Jen, a food psychologist who specializes in diabetes and weight management, considers how that type of classification is a disservice to our health. “When we make foods ‘bad,’ we can set up a cycle of rebellion and craving them more,” she said. “It’s the inner teen inside us that doesn’t like to be told what to do. People feel ashamed and often feel hopeless or a sense of ‘what’s the point,’ and then they overeat to comfort.”
These simple-to-prepare recipes for the kind of delectable dishes people crave but feel they can’t eat when trying to be healthy and trim, actually can be the basis of a personal weight-loss plan. They can also be a way to add “off-limit” foods back into an already successful diet. Or they can simply be part of an exciting new way to eat healthfully — and with pleasure.
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