Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Health Journal - Making Vegetables the Main Course

In an effort to feed my family more raw foods, I am working on making vegetables the main course for two of our meals.  Having salads for lunch is nothing new around here, but eating mostly vegetables for dinner is.  I've had to get really creative!  There have only been a few complaints and every once in a while I'll make a fancy dinner where vegetables are not the main course, just to treat my very agreeable family. :)

Lots of people claim to eat healthy.  Healthy is relative.  A vegetarian would tell you that they eat healthy foods, but I would disagree.  I think God gave us meat to enjoy.  Really, He gave us all foods to enjoy.  But what is food?  I think that food is something that is alive; something that will spoil.  Brightly colored, packaged, chemical-filled items are not food.  I am famous for telling my kids, "That is not food!", when someone is tempting them with candy.  I want to get it into their minds so they will recognize it when they are older.  So how do you know if you are eating healthy?  One good sign is to look at how much compost you and your family generate in a day.  By the end of the day, the compost bucket should be full of orange peels, apple cores, banana peels, kiwi skins, onion skins, carrot tops, beet tops, lettuce ends, celery tops, avocado skins, zucchini tops, and such.  If the compost bucket is empty, and the garbage can is full of colorful boxes, cans, plastic bags, and pretty wrappers, well, you are probably not eating what you should be eating.  (Although frozen fruits and vegetables do come in plastic bags and don't generate compost, but they do count as healthy foods.)  God's foods are naturally beautiful.  They don't have to come in fancy eye-catching packaging.  Their colors are not manufactured in a lab, and they contain exactly what we need to maintain health.

One of the best ways to include more healthy foods in your diet, is to think of fruits and vegetables as the main course and the rest of your meal as a side dish.  Once you start eating all those fiber rich foods, you will fill up fast.  And the best part about eating healthy foods is that you can eat as much as you want (or as much as you can) and you will not gain weight.   There are so many benefits to making produce the main course.  You will be slim, healthy, and happy - meaning you will weigh what you should, feel good, and have balanced hormones. 

Here are some samples of our lunches.

Vegetable Pizza
Sourdough crust with pizza sauce and melted cheese. 
On top we put raw veggies - broccoli, tomatoes, onions, and mixed greens. 
Everyone enjoys this meal.

Vegetable Wrap
This is similar to the pizza with veggies, cheese, and mixed greens. 
For the sauce I use our Dill Dip recipe
which includes plain yogurt, dill, fresh garlic, lemon juice, and salt.
Another hit! :)

Fruity Salad
This salad is a treat.  It's made with spinach greens, oranges, shredded carrots, shredded apples, and raisins.  We top this one with homemade French dressing.  Yum. :)

 Taco Salad
We all enjoy this salad too.  It's made with romaine lettuce, cabbage, onions, tomatoes, celery, black beans, and shredded cheese.  Then we put crushed tortilla chips on top and plain yogurt.


nicole said...

Will you share your homemade french dressing with me? :)

Mindy said...

I would love to! :)

French Dressing
3/4 cup of Olive oil
3/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup ketchup
1 tsp. Braggs liquid aminos or Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. salt


Theresa said...

I'm going to try your fruity salad tomorrow. The one I had today was with spring mix salad greens, baby spinach, shredded carrots, sliced strawberries, red onion, some seasoned croutons and a poppyseed dressing. In the summer I like to add fresh snap peas too. I eat this salad a few times a week. Mmmm

Brenda Martin Rydberg said...

I just now read this post for the first time. You are such an inspiration. These pictures made my mouth water. I love the way you explained real foods and how your compost bucket is the test!! Very creative explanation. :) What a joy you are. :)

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