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30 Days to a New You

Welcome to SAFE’s 30 Days to a New You healthy eating and lifestyle plan. Congratulations on taking a proactive step towards good health.

In 30 days a new habit can be formed. That new habit could lead to a healthier and happier you. By following this healthy eating and lifestyle plan for 30 days, you should feel cleaner and more energised. Ideally, you will also feel that your brain and body have been rewired to crave healthier food options. Even though this is not a typical weight loss diet, you might find you manage to move some stubborn weight.

Whilst we provide some delicious and easy to prepare recipes, any food that falls within the guidelines can be eaten. So, what are the guidelines?

Guidelines:

Simply put, it is suggested that you eat only:

  • fruit (in moderation to keep blood sugar levels stable)
  • vegetables
  • legumes
  • nuts
  • seeds

Eliminating:

  • GMO (genetically modified) foods
  • non-organic foods (where possible)
  • grains/gluten (including rice, corn, oats, rye, bread and pasta)
  • soy
  • seafood
  • animal products
  • dairy
  • eggs
  • margarine/spread
  • trans fats (including commercial baked goods)
  • fast foods
  • fried foods
  • table salt
  • added sugars
  • artificial sweeteners
  • commercial fruit juice
  • soft drinks
  • energy drinks
  • alcohol
  • coffee
  • green/black/white tea
  • tobacco

This may sound difficult or limiting, but there are thousands of delicious recipes that can be made, or existing recipes can be modified. It’s a great opportunity to get creative, and discover new ingredients!

Whole foods:

Whole foods are plant-based foods that have not been processed or refined. They are as close to nature as possible. Whilst processed foods are adulterated and rarely resemble their natural form or ingredients, whole foods are easy to identify. Tomatoes, whether they are fresh, sun dried or cooked as a passata tomato puree, are all considered whole foods. Whereas, commercial pasta sauce, which generally contains added sugar and table salt, would be an example of a processed food.

When shopping, choose foods that are either a whole food, or contain only whole food ingredients. This will ensure that there are no e-codes or other unhealthy additives. Natural and organic specialty items, such as organic yeast-free vegetable stock powder, nutritional yeast and organic frozen dragon fruit may be found in the health food aisle of your supermarket or in a health food shop.

Sugar and salt:

Eating only whole foods eliminates all refined sugars. Sugar consumption has been linked to systemic inflammation (including joint inflammation), increased acidity, candida overgrowth, the proliferation of parasites, digestive imbalance, food sensitivity, obesity, headaches, arthritis, cardiovascular disease, liver damage, hormone dysregulation and an increased risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes. (Additionally, artificial sweeteners also increase acidity and inflammation, and have been linked to changes in nervous system function.) It is possible to avoid refined sugars and also satisfy a sweet tooth by including dates, whole fruits and stevia in the diet. Fruit should be eaten in moderation to avoid blood sugar imbalance.

Many people consider that salt is an unhealthy food additive; however, salt is integral to fluid balance and healthy cellular function. Whilst table salt should always be avoided, a mineral-rich sea salt, such as SAFE’s Sea Mineral Salt, is beneficial, particularly for people living in hot climates who lose a lot of valuable electrolytes, including sodium. Citramin, which is a broad-spectrum blend of both fulvic and concentrated sea minerals is another excellent way of replacing electrolytes and re-establishing mineral balance.

Raw vs cooked foods:

A raw food diet is made up of foods that have not been cooked or processed, and commonly includes fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds, fermented foods and sprouted grains. The main benefit of eating raw foods is that they tend to be richer in certain nutrients than cooked foods, since nutrients can be easily deactivated or leach out of food during the cooking process.

Cooking can improve the taste and aroma of food, which makes it much more enjoyable to eat, and activates the initial stages of digestion. Cooking softens the hard, fibrous tissues, including cellulose and collagen, helping the digestive system to process the food more efficiently. Additionally, cooking allows a greater variety of food that would otherwise be omitted, such as potatoes and pumpkin, to be incorporated into the diet. To optimise the body’s health, eating a colourful combination of both raw and cooked whole foods is best for obtaining maximum nutritional diversity.

Healthier food preparation techniques include activation, steaming, grilling and sautéing. Frying, deep frying, high temperature baking, boiling, pressure cooking and microwaving should be avoided. Typically, lower temperature cooking preserves the nutrient profile and natural integrity of whole foods.

Organic food:

SAFE always recommends eating organic where possible. Following World War II an excess of warfare chemicals were repurposed as agricultural fertilisers, herbicides and pesticides. These toxic chemicals have caused soils to become acidic, and have leached them of their natural mineral and moisture content, leading to soil infertility and erosion. Organic foods have a higher nutrient content, are non-GMO, and do not contain artificial fertilisers, herbicides or pesticides.

Acid/Alkaline foods:

As SAFE members will be aware, an acid/alkaline balance is essential for the proper functioning of all the body’s processes. An acidic diet leads to inflammatory diseases, including arthritis and cardiovascular disease. This eating and lifestyle plan eliminates the most problematic acidic foods and drinks. An ideal diet follows the 80/20 rule. Approximately 80% alkaline foods to 20% acidic foods. Please refer to SAFE’s Acid/Alkaline Chart for a guide to which foods are best for the body’s pH balance. We recommend measuring your pH status using the Litmus pH Test Kit prior to commencing, and also during, this eating and lifestyle plan as a guide to whether you need to incorporate more green foods and alkalising fruit and vegetables into your diet.

Activation:

Activation is a practice that has been utilised for thousands of years, making food easier for the body to digest. Anti-nutrients, including enzyme inhibitors and phytic acid, are present in nuts, seeds, legumes and grains, and can have a negative impact on the body. Enzyme inhibitors are designed by nature to stop seeds from sprouting too soon. Phytic acids (within plants these compounds are referred to as phytates) bind with beneficial minerals, including calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc, impeding their absorption. Soaking otherwise nutrient-rich nuts, seeds, legumes and grains breaks down the phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors.

Simply cover the raw nuts, seeds, legumes and grains with luke-warm water and a pinch of Sea Mineral Salt and cover for 8-24 hours. When activating grains and seeds, adding a small amount of a natural acid, such as two teaspoons of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar, to the water will aid in breaking down phytic acid even further. Drain water and rinse thoroughly. Nuts and seeds can be dehydrated in an oven on low heat or in a dehydrator after soaking to restore texture and flavour.

Where a recipe lists ‘activated’, this refers to freshly soaked (still wet) ingredients, whereas ‘dried activated’ means soaked and then dehydrated. However, raw nuts, seeds, and legumes (toasted where necessary) will be a suitable substitute. Activation requires planning ahead of time, but reduces cooking time.

Mix and match:

As you become familiar with the following recipes, you can also mix and match elements to suit your palate. Love pesto? Why not try it with broccoli? Homemade baked beans on creamy mashed potato? Sounds delicious! The more you explore and even invent new recipes, the greater the variety of nutrients you will add to your diet.

Drinks:

It is important to drink 1-2 litres of filtered water daily. A water purifier should remove both chlorine and fluoride when tap water is fluoridated.

Commercial fruit juice is high in fruit sugars (and sometimes added sugar) and low in beneficial fibre. To retain all the nutrients found in fruit and vegetables, it is preferable to use an extractor or power blender that juices everything, including the fibre.

Tea and coffee are diuretics and cause acidity, creating dehydration and inflammation within the body. A suitable alternative is herbal tea (hot or cold). When required, milk can be replaced by coconut or nut milk.

Supplementation:

Consuming at least 2 teaspoons of Citramin and Green Barley per day will help you to feel energised and provide your body with essential nutrients. Not just nutritious, Maca Powder makes a delicious addition to smoothies.

Detoxification:

As you can see from the How to Slowly Introduce a Green Food guide, there are a few signs that you may be detoxing too quickly. Some of the most significant improvements you may experience from a detox are:

  • improved taste perception – encouraging the use of fresh herbs for enhanced food flavouring
  • reduced cellulite – as stored toxins are released from fat cells
  • clearer skin
  • brighter eyes
  • a stronger immune system
  • healthier digestion
  • improved body odour and fresher breath

Please note: If you are still experiencing body odour, try eliminating pungent foods, including onion, garlic, chives, spring onions, leeks, cumin and fenugreek from your diet. If your skin is not clearer, reducing consumption of high fat nuts, such as cashews, may be beneficial. In the case of bloating, activation and thorough rinsing of legumes, including chickpeas and lentils, should reduce symptoms; otherwise minimise their consumption.

Exercise:

We all know how important exercise is for the body and mind. Aim for 20-30 minutes daily, or at least 3 times per week. Low impact exercise, such as walking, swimming or aqua aerobics, will aid cellular health, circulation and detoxification, and boost oxygen transportation.

Is 30 days necessary?

If you find that 30 days is too long, why not try 10 or 15 days? This will provide your body with a quick and gentle cleanse.

Cautions:

If you are suffering from any health condition or allergy, including a nut allergy, please contact a SAFE Naturopath or your healthcare practitioner before undertaking this eating and lifestyle plan. Please be aware that some natural supplements and exercise may be unsuitable whilst pregnant, on pharmaceutical medications, with certain health conditions or for children. If you are currently using any medications or have a particular health condition or allergy, please contact a SAFE Naturopath prior to commencing any supplemental program. All information provided is for personal education purposes only and should not be used for prevention, diagnosing or treatment of a health condition or disease.