My name is Giselle and I blog over at My Healthy Happy Home. I was so honored when Kim asked me to guest post because I love her blog and her adorable little family. Also, I am super passionate about health and fitness so any opportunity to share my passion with others, I jump at!
First, a little about me. I’m a thirty something stay at home mom to my little Love Nugget, wife to my wonderful husband and healthy living blogger. I love to cook, bake, exercise, travel and spend time with my family outdoors as often as possible.
I grew up on a hunting club with a large garden on our property, so there was never a shortage of fresh produce or wild game. Although when I was younger I probably didn’t appreciate it as much as I should have, I feel lucky to have been raised in such a healthy environment, which I feel has helped drive my desire to raise my family the same way.
Today, I thought I would talk about a few ways I provide my family with healthy foods in a society that is driven by over processed, sugar packed, and chemically altered food.
1. Cook at home as often as possible.
If you don’t know how to cook, learn! Trust me, it’s so easy! Cooking is something that I’ve always enjoyed and even more so because I know it’s a much healthier option than eating out it. Don’t get me wrong, we do splurge and dine out from time to time but the majority of the time we eat at home.
Yes, I know it can be difficult when you are working, raising kids, and balancing life in general but with a little preparation ahead of time, home cooked meals are very possible and extremely rewarding!
2. Shop at local farmer’s markets or fruit stands.
Going to farmer’s markets has always been a fun weekend activity that The Hubby and I have enjoyed doing. Now, with our little man, we all enjoy going as a family. It’s fun browsing the fresh produce and purchasing yummy healthy foods to cook and enjoy at home. It’s not only a great way to support local farmers and eat healthy foods, but with a toddler, I know I am setting a good example of another way to live healthfully.
3. If you’re eating out, choose somewhere that offers healthy options or a salad bar.
Yes, I know I said we eat in most the time. However, when we do go out I always try to choose somewhere that offers fresh, locally sourced, and organic foods. Our go-to dining out choice for lunches and sometimes dinners is Whole Foods. I always know I can find something healthy for myself and my son without having to bug the server with my millions of substitutions.
Speaking of that, if we do go to a restaurant, I’ve learned not to be afraid to ask. Yep, I’m that annoying customer that asks for a million modifications, substitutions and general questions about the meal I’m ordering. I figure, if I’m paying someone to cook my food, I might as well get it prepared in a way I’ll eat it right?
4. Purchase the Dirty Dozen Organically.
Yes, organic can be expensive. Especially if you’re purchasing all your produce that way when in actuality, you don’t need to. The Environmental Working Group has compiled a list with the most contaminated fruits and vegetables, calling it "The Dirty Dozen."
By purchasing at least these twelve foods organically, I know I’m reducing my family’s pesticide exposure by at least 75%! I carry the above pocket chart in my wallet at all times for a quick reference on what to purchase organically. :-)
5. Make snack foods, freezer meals, and treats at home.
There are tons of hidden ingredients in processed foods these days and especially in things like granola bars, crackers, cookies, etc. Even so-called "health" foods contain tons of extra sugar and preservatives.
While it can be easy to grab snacks to help get us through our busy day to day lives, it’s also pretty easy to stock up on home made foods to keep us going. Some of my favorites that I make for my family are Chocolate Raspberry Paleo Muffins, Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Granola Bars, Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Granola, and Oatmeal cookie Protein Bites.
6. Never leave home without a healthy snack option.
Whether we are taking a short trip to visit family, going on vacation, or just heading out to run errands, I always pack a bag and cold pack of healthy snacks.
We just had a morning the other day where I had planned to run into the car dealership real fast to ask about my car battery. The quick trip turned into a three hour wait there + a stop at Costco, which meant we were out of the house for an unplanned 4 hours. Luckily I had packed apples, carrot sticks, tomatoes, granola bars and a Little Green Pouch filled with yogurt and berries. Otherwise we would have been starving!
These are just a few things I routinely do to make sure my family stays healthy, and happy!
Thanks for reading and thanks again to Kim for hosting me today!