Signs You Need to Make Changes to Your Diet

Making sure that you are healthy and feeling good is important to living a full life. But it can be difficult to manage all the elements it takes to keep your health in check. Starting with one thing, like your diet, can help you to improve your health in a more manageable way. But first you have to know whether your diet needs help. Here are a few signs that you need to make some changes to the way you eat.

You’re Always Tired

There are many reasons why you might be tired, but regular fatigue often points to a problem with getting enough important nutrients in your diet. If you are noticing a trend of being tired no matter how much rest you get, it is a good sign that you need to change your diet in some way. Getting enough iron, B12, and vitamin D canl all impact your energy levels, in addition to many other important nutrients. Before taking supplements or adjusting your diet, talk to your doctor so you can find out what you are lacking and how you can add them to your meals.

Difficulty Digesting

If you are having difficulties with digestion, it can also point to a problem with your diet. Some bodies have a difficult time processing particular kinds of foods. For other people, their diet is unbalanced which means their digestive system doesn’t have what it needs to keep them feeling great. Problems with diet can lead to all kinds of digestive issues. For example, hemorrhoids can cause unpleasant symptoms that eating more fiber prevents.

You’re Hungry

If you are eating regularly but you are always hungry, it likely indicates a problem with your diet. Either you aren’t eating enough, or you aren’t getting enough of the nutrients you need. Changing the kinds of food you eat can help you to feel more full and to improve your overall health. Protein is especially important to having energy and feeling full after finishing a meal. Make sure you are getting enough protein to keep your energy levels up.

Your diet will have a profound impact on the way you feel and how you experience your day to day life. It’s important that you make alterations as necessary so you can feel better and do more. Talk to your doctor or a dietician if you have questions so they can help you to improve your diet in a positive way.

Check out this article on vegetables that make sides in a paleo diet!

Vegetables That Make Great Sides in a Paleo Diet

Paleo diets can be great for people searching to live a healthier lifestyle. However, sometimes it can be difficult to maintain if you don’t know how to keep a balanced diet of different types of food. One of the great food groups that you should regularly be eating in your paleo diet is vegetables. The good news is that there are many ways to cook vegetables to add to a delicious meal. Here are a few different kinds of vegetables that make great sides in your paleo diet.

Root Vegetables

First off, root vegetables make great sides in paleo meals. There are various kinds of root vegetables such as yams, sweet potatoes, carrots, and more. One easy way to prepare root vegetables is by making a mashed side, such as mashed sweet potatoes or yams, that can be topped with salt, pepper, and mix-ins. All of these vegetables can also be easily air fried to make crispy fries, bites, or hash browns. Oven-roasted root vegetables are also delicious and easy.

Leafy Green Vegetables

Another great group of vegetables that works well for different paleo sides are leafy green vegetables. Vegetables like kale and spinach help your teeth stay strong. Leafy greens are very easy to throw together in different kinds of salads. Kale and spinach are also great when cooked with different kinds of proteins and vegetables and served warm. They can even be used as a breakfast side in a small omelet. Leafy greens are very healthy for you and can be used in practically every meal.

Other Veggies

There are a number of other paleo vegetables that can be steamed, roasted, or air fried to make delicious side dishes. Veggies like cauliflower, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts can be prepared in countless ways that will add nutrition and delicious flavors to your paleo meals. Some people even like to use cauliflower to make rice or pizza crust to include even more servings of delicious vegetables in their main courses.

Working more vegetables into your paleo diet can take some work at first, but it’s not too hard once you get the hang of it. Remember, there are tons of veggies that you can use and multiple ways to prepare them to make delicious side dishes. As you take the time and effort to include a variety of veggies in your daily meals, you’ll find that you feel better, and it will be easier to maintain your diet.

What you eat is just the beginning of your start to a healthier you. Check out my Wellness Picks for tools, products, and tips that will help you achieve greater wellness.

Items You Need to Check Off Before Starting Your Road Trip

Road trips are a great way to make memories. For your road trip to go smoothly, it will require planning in advance. You should make a list of all the necessities and ensure that each key point is checked off before you start your trip.

Plan Your Route

Road trips don’t always go to plan, but you do need to have a plan in place. This will make it less stressful. You should pick out the destinations and map out the roads you will take. Especially if your route is an unfamiliar one, you should search ahead for rest stops and plan stops. If it is an especially long drive, you should plan how much you will drive each day and sleep accommodations. Plan for surprises on your trip and have a backup plan. Planning can also help save you fuel because you won’t need to take unexpected detours.

Budget Your Trip

Your budget will dictate what you will do on the rest of your trip. Set a budget starting with essential costs of your trip, like the cost of fuel, hotels, and gas. You should plan your itinerary, plan out the driving route, and how many miles per day. Plan for any activities you will want to do and eat out. The last bit of your budget should be money that will be left over to use in unplanned situations and will give you flexibility in your trip.

Make a List of Eateries

Eating locally is a great way to enjoy your destination. Before you go on your trip you should make a list of eateries that you can enjoy. This will require a little research. You can use social media to find places to eat. You can use Instagram or Facebook to search local eateries and can also see what people are saying about them. There are also many other apps that can help you find eateries, like Yelp. Apps like these will often show a rating and reviews from customers. You can also leave some places unplanned and ask around or wander while you are at your destination to find some great places.

Get Car Maintenance Done

Car maintenance will prevent your car breaking down. You should check your tires to make sure the tread is not worn and there are no tears or punctures. A mechanic should check your breaks, battery, fluids, lights, and air conditioning. You may want to have your oil changed, especially if it is close to time. You can have your car prepped by having it cleaned and by having ceramic coating applied. Ceramic coating repels contaminants such as dirt, sap, bugs and salt. Your ceramic coating will help to protect your car while you are on the road.

Documents

When you are going on a road trip, you should make sure you have all the necessary documents. The first, and most obvious, thing you should have with you is your driver’s license. Without this you should not even be driving. Make sure any other driver in the car has theirs as well. Make sure you also have your insurance cards in your glove box. This will be important if any accidents happen while on the road. This way you can utilize your coverage. You should also make sure you have your documentation for registration of your vehicle in your car as well. Not having any of these documents will negatively impact your trip if you get pulled over for any reason.

Plan Activities or Sight Seeing

When you are planning your route for your trip, you should also plan for any sightseeing or activities you want to do along the way. There are so many different things you can see on your drive which can make it more interesting. Stopping for sightseeing will help break up the trip and help you make memories. You will want to set a plan for this, but also make sure you aren’t too rigid in your plan. You can plan extra time for sightseeing and activities that aren’t on your list. You can go explore and enjoy local features and cultures and it also gives your body some more time out of the car to stretch.

Carry Cash

While on your road trip, it may be a good idea to bring some cash with you. You can make do with a debit or credit card, but it is a good idea to have cash in the case of an emergency. You should bring at least $100 in cash with you, unless you are going to a place with many small businesses and won’t have access to an ATM. There is always a potential for losing your wallet, so you should keep your cash in a separate, but safe, place. You should also ensure that your credit card company is notified on your trip, so they don’t freeze your credit card.

Secure Your Home

While you are away from your home, you will want to make sure that it is secure. You should start by making sure it is clean and orderly so you can come back to a clean home. Arrange for someone to pick up your mail, water your plants, and take care of your pets. You also have many appliances and devices that use a lot of energy. You can unplug many of these items to save energy while you are away. You should do a walk-through of your home before you leave to ensure no water is running and no appliances are left on. To add protection to your home, you could install a security system.

For your trip to go smoothly, you need to plan many aspects of your trip, and make plans for keeping your home secure. With the proper planning and checklist, you can ensure that your trip will go smoothly and almost anxiety free. While it may not go exactly to the plan, any detour will be easily handled and will contribute to fond memories.

Read this next: How to Listen to Your Body as You Eat

What You Need to Know Before Embarking on a Road Trip

Road trips can be a ton of fun for the whole group, but they can also be full of stress and frustration if you aren’t adequately prepared. Going in with a strong plan can help you to make your road trip experience more fruitful and more fun for drivers and passengers alike. If you want to make your road trip the best it can be, there are a few things that you need to know before you hit the road. 

Plan Out Your Trip 

While it is okay to wing some elements of your trip, you want to have a pretty solid plan in mind before you get going. Your plan should include the places where you want to stop each night and some options for food and activities. You don’t have to plan every single element, and you don’t have to stick to the plans you make. But having a plan will give you something to turn to if you are bored, unsure what to do, or something goes wrong. 

Know the Laws of Each State 

If your trip is going to take you across state lines, you want to make sure that you know the laws of the states you enter. This will protect you from getting a ticket or being uninformed about important regulations in the states you pass through. You also want to make sure you are traveling safely, whether you are in a car or on a motorcycle. Even when motorcycle helmets aren’t required by law, they protect you from serious injury. When you know the laws, you can stay safer and have more fun since you won’t get sidetracked by an unfortunate ticket. 

What to Pack 

Depending on where you are road tripping, your packing needs may vary, but there are a few constants. First you want to make sure you have enough food to get you from place to place. It can make for a very miserable road trip if you don’t have snacks and have hours before you hit the next town. You also want to make sure to pack safety supplies and the right clothing for the climates you will be in. 

When you take the time to plan out your road trip, you can have a ton of fun and minimize your stress. That will make you a better and safer driver and help your trip to be an even better time. Make sure to bring a camera or your phone along so you can capture the beautiful views.

Read this next: How to Get More Paleo-Friendly Snacks in Your Diet

How to Get More Paleo-Friendly Snacks in Your Diet

Snacks are an important and healthy way to fuel your body in-between meals. But when you follow a paleo diet, things can get tricky when it comes to snacking. Avoiding grains, dairy, and other products that only became available after farming, means a lot of traditional snacks are off-limits. Here are some tips on how to get more paleo-friendly snacks in your diet.

Dehydrate Fruit

Fruit is nature’s candy, sweet, juicy, bursting with flavor, and rich in nutrients. Fruits are wonderful foods that should play a bigger role in your diet. Carrying around fruit as a snack can be challenging though, because it needs to be kept refrigerated if it’s not going to be consumed quickly. Dehydrated fruit, on the other hand, is shelf stable and easy to take on the go. You can purchase dried and dehydrated fruit at the grocery store, or make it yourself! Just place strips of fruit in a dehydrator and bake for 6-8 hours, until the fruit has dried. It is fun and easy, and tastes delicious.

Make Jerky

If you’re a fan of jerky, you’ll love making it at home. Jerky is dried and cured strips of meat. Jerky has been around for hundreds of years, and is a method used before refrigeration to preserve meat. And it is very easy to make jerky at home, you just have to dehydrate it.

Dehydrating meat removes 80% of the water. This will shrink the meat strips a bit, but also make it chewy and snappy in the jerky way you love. Removing the water is also a large part of what makes a jerky shelf-stable. There are tons of recipes available online to make your own jerky to check out.

Snack on Trail Mix

Lots of trail mixes are paleo, as long as you stick to the ones that are made with nuts, seeds, fruits, and nothing extra like chocolates or pretzels. Trail mix is a great way to get a burst of energy from a good mix of healthy fats and protein. And it’s so easy to make your own at home using exactly what you like.

Following a paleo diet doesn’t mean you have to give up snacking. With a little preparation, you can have delicious and crave-worthy snacks that are paleo-friendly. Give these tips a try and see what is your favorite paleo-friendly snack!

Read this next: How to Listen to Your Body as You Eat

How Can I Keep My Food Good for Longer?

Throwing away food feels just like throwing away money— having your groceries go bad so soon after buying them is frustrating to say the least! How can you prevent your good food from going bad for as long as possible? Here are a few tips that may extend your groceries’ lifespan significantly.

Follow Storage Instructions

Any food item comes with ideal circumstances for storage. While you may think you know where foods should go, take the time to learn exactly where each food item has the best chances of “survival”. For example, some fruits and vegetables will last longer unrefrigerated, like tomatoes, bananas, herbs, melons, and squash. Know what foods need to be kept out of moist areas (like mushrooms or grains), and what foods benefit from hydration (like carrots or celery). Pay attention to labels on packaged foods, and research the unpackaged foods to ensure you are storing them properly.

Process It

Consider processing your foods to give them a much longer lifespan! According to Vacuum Sealers Unlimited, using a method like dehydrating, vacuum sealing, or freeze drying will extend the shelf-life. These methods maintain many of the nutrients and much of the flavor of the produce you love, allowing you to use it for months to come without worrying about rot or expiration. If the food item is not able to be processed, then consider freezing it! Most foods can last almost half a year without acquiring freezer burn, which damages the taste and texture of those foods and exposes them to potentially harmful chemicals from your freezer. Plus, frozen foods retain 100% of the nutrients they contain at the moment of freezing.  

Buy the Right Foods

Be aware of the freshness of your groceries when you buy them. You can’t blame food for rotting when they were on the verge of doing so even in the store! Prevent waste by meal planning and only buying the produce necessary for those plans. Or, implement a process of cycling through your food to make sure that you’re using your oldest things first—this applies to packaged foods as well as produce. And Then We Saved recommends looking at expiration dates before you buy, and (as much as possible) buying products with a naturally long shelf life like pasta, potatoes, dried meats, canned foods or honey.

Each of these things will help you reduce or even eliminate the frustrating waste that you may have from old and rotten food. Try one or try all and enjoy your fresh food, all the time!

Read this next: How to Fit Healthy Eating Into Your Busy Schedule

How to Listen to Your Body as You Eat

Many people find that they overeat in certain situations, and are trying to move away from those bad habits. Whether you find yourself overeating on vacation, when you’re alone at home, or when you’re eating out, it is important to know how to take better care of your body. Here are a few ways to know how to listen to your body as you eat so you don’t do damage to your health by overeating.

 

Eat Until You’re Full

Overeating is something that happens really easily if you’re really hungry or rushed. If you are eating a big meal after being very hungry or in a limited amount of time, try not to listen to your body. As you are eating, try to pay attention to how you are feeling. If you start to feel satisfied and the impulse to eat more starts to diminish, you’re probably getting close to being full. Don’t rush ahead and stuff yourself with as much food as possible as fast as you can because that will result in feeling overfull. Slow down and pay attention to how your body feels. According to Alissa Rumsey, you’ll then feel comfortably full and satisfied at the end of your meal.

 

Avoid Foods That Don’t Agree with You

It is natural for different people to have certain foods that don’t agree with them, making them feel bloated or causing heartburn or stomach aches. For example, according to Granite Peaks Gastroenterology, some spicy and acidic foods can cause heartburn. Citric fruits and sour or bitter drinks might also have a similar effect. It is important to listen to your body when trying different foods so you can identify which foods may cause you any discomfort.

 

Designate Meals

If you’re really busy and often eating on the go, your body might not actually register that you’ve eaten a real meal. For example, if you’re eating a bagel as you drive to work for breakfast, or chowing down on chips for lunch while working on the computer, your body will likely not treat that consumption of food as a meal. According to Elise Museles, it is important to actually sit down with a plate and take the time to eat your food like a meal, even if you only have ten minutes to do so. This will allow your body to recognize the food as a designated meal and to be more satisfied and nourished once you’ve finished.

 

As you are learning to take better care of your body by listening to it as you eat, be patient with yourself. It will be a process to learn how to take care of yourself, and you’ll likely still have days where you feel bloated and overfull. If you keep putting forth effort and paying attention to how you feel when you eat, you’ll figure out an eating system of foods and meal times that will help you feel the best.


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How to Fit Healthy Eating Into Your Busy Schedule

How to Fit Healthy Eating Into Your Busy Schedule

Eating healthy can seem like an uphill battle. Whether you feel like you are constantly battling stress that pushes you to eat unhealthily or whether you struggle with the motivation to actually take the time to make healthy food, thinking about some of these ideas can get you started. But be sure to take the time to really self-analyze so you figure out what your main struggles are and what you really should be focusing on.

Prepare Simple, Healthy Snacks

Whether you are working a typical 9–5 or are staying at home taking care of the kids, life gets busy quickly and it can be easy to unexpectedly miss meals. According to Kayla Itsines, having healthy snacks on hand will help you cope with hunger throughout the day.

Additionally, as you are feeling increased stress, having healthy snacks on hand will help you turn to something other than unhealthy food if you have been conditioned to turn to food when you are feeling not as great.

Set Aside Days to Cook

Setting time aside to prepare your healthy meals will make a big difference in your long-term success. Simply put, eating healthy often requires more work than eating out or eating unhealthily.

Figuring out the best approach to meal prepping varies by person. Some people prefer to simply chop vegetables so they’re ready to be added to different meals when the time comes. Others may prefer simply freezing fully cooked food for later.

Regardless of the method you prefer, think about vacuum sealing some of your food. According to Vacuum Sealers Unlimited, you can store everything from fruits and vegetables to bulk foods in a vacuum-sealed bag. This will help preserve their freshness longer and will save space in your fridge.

Plan Your Meals

According to Super Healthy Kids, another important aspect of enabling yourself to eat healthily is planning your meals for every day of the week. Figuring out the best way to do this differs from person to person, but the principle is the same—when you know what you’re going to eat, you’ll be less likely to give in to cravings.

Try meal prepping a few different main courses over the weekend. Then at the beginning of each day, decide which ones you are going to have for the day.

Taking some of these steps will be instrumental in your journey towards more healthy eating. Of all things to really focus on, focus on preparation. Healthy eating isn’t something that happens accidentally, it takes planning. But when that planning is done well, you will set yourself up for success.

Read this next: How to Enhance Your Eating Experience With New Flavors

How to Enhance Your Eating Experience With New Flavors

When it comes to cooking, it can get easy to fall into a routine. When you buy the same things every week and cook the same things every week, you can start to feel a need to switch things up. Switching things up doesn’t have to be overwhelming if you make a few small changes to your eating habits.

Try New Spices

One of the best ways to immediately add new flavors to your regular meal rotation is by adding new spices to your meals. Even if you still plan on having chicken and veggies, you can season them with Cajun seasoning to pack a punch and totally shift the flavor palette.

Figuring out which spices will be good options for you to start out with, think about the different flavor profiles you are drawn to or are curious about. Maybe you’ve never had Haitian food or maybe you’re curious about Colombian spices. Identify some of these flavor profiles and then make spice blends accordingly. That way you can just use those spices on your food and you’ll be ready to go.

Cook with a Different Oil

Another way to switch up your eating experience is by using different oils. Most people use vegetable oil or olive oil in their cooking. And while these oils have benefits, switching it up can be good. For example, try coconut oil to have a slightly sweet taste to your food. You can also use hemp oil for cooking to provide your food with a nutty flavor.

Try a New Recipe Altogether

When you want to switch up your eating experience, it can be overwhelming to try new recipes all the time. And when it’s hard to try new recipes often, it can become hard to try new recipes at all. Consider choosing one day a week when you’ll try a new recipe—maybe Friday night.

Then, if you only plan to make one foreign dish a week, you’ll be able to look forward to it as a fun change from the normal and you’ll also be able to be less overwhelmed by the process of making new things.

Enhancing your everyday eating experience can seem challenging at first. When you have established a comfortable routine, it can seem unmotivating to break it. But even making simple small changes to your everyday eating habits can help you try new flavor profiles.

Looking for a new recipe to try? Try this Keto Chocolate Chunk Biscotti!

Food Lover’s Guide to Eating in Manhattan

Any true foodie will rejoice on a trip to Manhattan. This melting pot of cultures features the country’s most diverse dining landscape, making it easy to find something to satisfy any craving. Here are four types of cuisine to indulge in while in the Big Apple.

Asian Food

A rich history of immigration to the US by people from Asia has resulted in a significant Asian population in New York City. With this large population of Asian immigrants comes a host of opportunities to indulge in authentic cuisine over a wide range of cultural subsets. The best place to start your Asian cuisine exploration in New York City is in Chinatown. Simply take a stroll along Canal Street and you will be met with a host of restaurants to welcome you in for a fabulous meal. If you’re looking for a finer meal, Shanghai 21 is highly rated by customers as a quality restaurant with vegan options. If you’re looking for some cheaper Asian fare, Xi’an Famous Foods and Tasty Hand-Pulled Noodles can both get you some quick yummy dumplings or soup for under $5.

Classic Steakhouses

There is no more quintessential New York City dining experience than enjoying a steak dinner in one of the area’s many classic steakhouses. These traditional steakhouses harken back to the old days with their leather furnishings, wood trim, and soft lighting. Popular places to consider for your meal include Gallagher’s Steakhouse, Delmonico’s, Peter Luger’s, and Smith & Wollensky. Any of these upscale joints will provide the best cuts of meat paired with all of the traditional steakhouse sides.

Bar Food

New York’s lively nightlife and bar scene translate to a cornucopia of bar food goodness. With so many options, you are never more than a short distance away from an amazing gastropub. Some of the best choices to consider include The Spotted Pig in the West Village, Ousia in trendy Hell’s Kitchen, Pier A Harbor House in Battery Park City, and Bolton & Watt in the East Village. If taking an Uber home, be advised that ride-share fare may increase during inclement weather, so plan your transportation carefully.

Italian Cuisine

For the most amazing Italian food in the states, be sure to head to New York City’s Little Italy neighborhood. Savvy travelers will check out the welcoming atmosphere and fabulous food at places such as Da Nico, Angelo’s of Mulberry Street, and Il Cortile. After you have noshed on fresh pasta and pizza, you are going to want to leave time to explore this lovely district with a cone of genuine gelato. If you’re looking for some good, cheap pizza on the go, however, you might want to stop by Joe’s Pizza in Greenwich Village or one of the surrounding locations.

Manhattan is not just a place to sightsee. You should prepare your taste buds to be met with an explosion of flavors with a trip to Manhattan. This bustling city will leave your stomach full and your heart happy.