Do a quick search online and the opinions and beliefs about what are actually healthy foods vary drastically. It can be overwhelming and super confusing. I’ve been there. Struggling to know what is truly healthy. On some level though, I think deep down, we all have some idea of what foods are healthy and those that are not. But with all of the noise out there, we can get overloaded. As a result, we can constantly question whether what we are eating is healthy.
Deep down, most of us have a sense that fruits and vegetables are good for us. Yet, somewhere along the line, many of us became afraid to eat fruit – for fear that it contained too much sugar. Or, maybe it was potatoes that we steered clear of because of all of the carbs. But, I bet if you sit quietly and in tune in, you will get a sense that fruit and even potatoes [without the sour cream and cheese] are actually beneficial foods.
At least, this is how it was for me. I knew that fruit offered tremendous health benefits, and believed it could even prevent cancer. Yet, I was afraid the [natural] sugars would feed candida or make me gain weight. It wasn’t until I became critically ill and exhausted all of my options that I turned to fruit as a major source of healing. I started drinking celery juice every morning along with a fruit-packed heavy metal detox smoothie. I could tell my body was happy with the shift almost immediately.
Don’t worry, I’m not suggesting you only eat fruit or that fruits are the only healthy foods out there. Though, they are definitely some of the most healthful and medicinal foods around. The various categories of veggies are wildly beneficial as well. Whether we’re talking leafy greens, potatoes, cruciferous, squash or otherwise, vegetables offer critical nutrients needed for a strong, balanced body. I’ll throw mushrooms in there as well, even though they aren’t technically a veggie. Herbs and raw honey are other foods that are supremely healing and nourishing for the body as well.
Healthy Foods Definition
Perhaps it’ll be helpful if we start with a “healthy foods definition”. Healthy foods are life-giving foods that supports the body in being vital. Healthy foods nourish the organs and glands. They do not contribute to toxicity nor feed pathogens – rather, they help eliminate toxicity and pathogens. Healthy foods support the body coming into balance, finding homeostasis.
Life-giving foods support the body in doing its job. The foods below are great options. Keep in mind though that high fat is actually not conducive to good health. I know. This is so contrary to various current fads. But, fat hinders the liver’s ability to do its many jobs. And we really don’t want that because the liver is the superhero of the body. It processes and stores nutrients. And it filters, disarms, and processes toxins and pathogens to protect you. So try to limit even healthy fats like avocado, nuts, and seeds.
Healthy Foods Options
I highly suggest focusing on these foods if you are truly interested in eating healthy food. These are top notch when it comes to nutrition – whether you are someone who suffers from chronic symptoms and conditions or not. When possible, buy organic, especially for produce you are will not be removing the skins from. If you need to buy conventional due to cost, try to avoid the dirty dozen or at least wash the produce very well.
- All fruits and vegetables (including potatoes and sweet potatoes)
- Herbs – fresh and dried
- Raw honey
- Seeds (in moderation) – raw and sprouted are best.
- Beans (in moderation)
- Coconut oil, avocado oil (for cooking and in moderation)
- Almond, sesame, olive oil (raw only and in moderation)
- Nut milks (in moderation and without additives and preservatives)
This list might look super limited, but it’s amazing how this list actually encompasses most edible plants. Think about how many fruits and vegetables that we have access to and how many various types of meals come from them. There is incredible abundance when focusing on these foods. I never feel like I’m missing out. Years later, I continue to be excited about the new ways I can create meals.
Importance of Eating Healthy Foods
The foods mentioned above are not just healthy, but they are critical to achieve optimal health. They offer high density nutrition like nothing else. In doing so, they support the elimination and cleansing of toxins. They increase vitality and slow and potentially reverse aging. They also aid in losing excess weight. Ultimately, they can reverse many chronic symptoms and conditions like:
- Autoimmune conditions
- Anxiety and depression
- Neurological issues
- Brain fog
- Acne, eczema, psoriasis
- ADD, ADHD
- And much more
Cheap Healthy Foods
I think there is the connotation that eating healthy has to be expensive. When you eat healthy, you tend to eat out a lot less. So you save money there. I have also found that making meals in big batches can help with less waste, too. Here are some of the least expensive options when it comes to cheap healthy foods:
- Bananas are one of the most inexpensive fruits around AND one of the most nutritional as well! I know people who eat a whole bunch of bananas in a day. Don’t be afraid of them. It’s ok to chow down on tons of these bad boys. Just make sure they are ripe when you eat them.
- Potatoes are rich with vitamins, enzymes, minerals, and antibiotic and antiviral properties. And they are oh so tasty. If I could only eat one food the rest of my life, it would be potatoes by far. I like to eat them with salsa or simply with a lot of yummy herbs and spices and a squeeze of lemon. You can also steam them and then blend them with seasonings a few cashews for a creamy sauce.
- Apples get overlooked because of their simplicity, but they offer so many incredible benefits. They are especially helpful at reversing digestive issues as they target harmful bacteria in the gut. Try throwing them in a blender with a few dates for some yummy, nutritious applesauce.
- Sprouts aren’t super cheap to buy, but they’re very easy and cheap to grow. Sprouting seeds are inexpensive and can last a while. You can sprout seeds in a glass jar over a few days.
- Sweet potatoes are super nutritious and packed with antioxidants. They also supply some wonderful glucose to the liver, adrenals and nervous system. They’re an awesome anti-stress food.
- Onions help to strengthen the immune system, brain, and nervous system. They offer a wide range of medicinal benefits. You can throw them in just about any savory dish raw or cooked.
- Celery is one of the most anti-inflammatory foods around. It also alkalizes the gut. A bunch of celery is usually quite cheap. If you aren’t as concerned about saving money, you can also try to juice the celery. Celery juice is one of the most medicinal foods on the planet.
- Melons are powerful liver cleansers and incredibly hydrating.
- Mushrooms are a medicinal powerhouse. Portobello, shiitake, cremini (mini portabellos) are some of the best ones. Chaga and reishi are wonderful as well, but not usually as inexpensive.
- Gluten-free Oats aren’t necessarily the most nutritious of foods. They are actually pretty neutral when it comes to nutrition. But they can be a good option if you are low on money and want something that will fill you up. Toss in some banana or apple with some honey or maple syrup.
Unhealthy Food List
Because it’s difficult to mention healthy foods without the unhealthy foods, I will briefly mention the foods to avoid when possible. These foods are not life-giving and contribute to further toxicity in the body, cause inflammation, and/or are hard on the liver and nervous system (including the brain).
- Canola oil, Sunflower oil, Safflower oil
- Gluten grains
- MSG – including natural flavors and nutritional yeast
- Citric acid
- Coffee, chocolate, caffeinated teas
- Vinegars – even ACV
- Sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners
- Processed foods
- Pork, chicken, and high fat meats
- Farm raised fish
Don’t worry! When you shift over to healthy foods, the palette often changes. And the benefits are so very worth it! Refraining from the above foods and adding in more healthy foods gradually will help you live life more fully. It’s like you’ll even see symptoms you didn’t know where there start to go away. The human body and system has tremendous potential. We just need to supply the right nutrients so it can do what it’s miraculously designed to do!