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As grocery prices continue to rise, many people are reevaluating their shopping habits and reconsidering basic ingredients like flour, real butter, and full-fat meats.

The concern lingering in our mind revolves around the age-old question: how do we eliminate the worry and fear associated with the calories in these foods? Let’s explore this together.

Spoiler alert: the real ‘health food aisle’ is where you find real, whole foods. Foods that don’t cost the earth or your weekly wages… foods like vegetables, fruit, legumes, whole grains, seeds and nuts.

Eat more like your great grandparents

Think about the people a few generations ago, who didn’t have to worry about how many calories they were eating. They simply cooked at home, ate the food, and moved on with their lives. 

Back then, ‘diet’ foods didn’t exist, and a lot of people still lived long, happy and healthy lives. That’s because eating foods that are the ‘real deal’ – by having a little bit more fat from milk and butter, or using flour, was considered normal. And most importantly- actually satisfying to eat.

Think about the French way of eating

The French tend to eat butter, the full fat, delicious version of it on croissants. Then, they feel satisfied and don’t spend the entire day constantly thinking about food.

French’s unique approach to eating combines a love for satiating full-fat meals, an appreciation for their culinary heritage, a love of cooking and an untainted enjoyment of what they eat.

What we can learn from that is eating foods like potatoes, bread, pasta and butter helps us walk away from a meal actually feeling satisfied. Plus, it makes us less likely to binge later or keep going to the kitchen pantry or fridge for snacks.

I don’t know about you but when I was eating a low fat, ‘health’ idealistic way, I would constantly think about food. And I’d never feel fully satisfied after I’d eaten. So, I think there is huge a benefit in going back to basics.

Is sugar or flour worse for you?

When looking at honey versus plain sugar, our body uses them both the same way. Sugar is sugar. It’s a source of carbohydrates that our body recognises as energy. Yet, we’ve been told that honey is a healthier alternative. 

And what about refined flour? What’s so awful about that? If it helps you cook at home more and (this is important) actually enjoy it- then is it really so bad?

When we demonise these perfectly normal foods that can be part of a healthy diet, we may be heading in the wrong direction.

Eat more to eat less

Crowd in vegetables, fruit, whole grains, and embrace back-to-basics cooking. Instead of feeling like another food rule, aim for those five serves of veggies a day. Less than 4% of Aussies are eating enough vegetables and legumes. So instead of asking ourselves “is sugar bad for me” or wondering how to avoid full fat milk and butter- let’s shift the focus.

The golden answer to our health is simply to eat more- especially more vegetables. It’s about naturally crowding in more of the healthy stuff, cooking at home, making satisfying foods, and moving on with your life. That’s a truly healthy way to live.

The meaty debate: full-fat vs lean

Opting for the normal, full-fat version rather than extra lean meat is perfectly acceptable. Let’s face it, extra lean meats often lead to dissatisfaction. The idea of incorporating full-fat meat, consuming it less frequently, and enhancing meals with more vegetables and legumes is much more doable, healthy, and affordable.

Take the Mediterranean diet as an example, where meat is consumed once or twice a month, rather than a daily staple. Yet, it’s considered one of the healthiest diets.

Picture this: enjoying the full-fat meat, accompanied by a bounty of veggies and legumes, without making it an everyday affair. Find the full recipe for this delicious Middle Eastern Mezze Plate here.

Diet culture might tell you there’s only one way to be healthy, but that’s far from the truth. There are countless ways to be healthy. And if adding things like butter makes your veggies more appealing, or using milk and flour to cook at home more- consider it a win!

Find what feels good for your body. And if you ever have concerns, a blood test can give you peace of mind.

So please, let go of unnecessary worries, make more satisfying meals and recognise that there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to healthy eating.

Need help taking the guesswork out of healthy eating without silly diet rules? You can find a bunch of delicious, healthy and simple recipes inside my Back to Basics app- try it 7 days free!

What type of eater are you?

like an old school cosmo quiz