06 Apr 18 Simple Ways to Eat More Naturally
Natural eating has exploded in popularity in recent years, and as Naturists, we should embrace a more natural lifestyle, but with so many buzzwords and jargon out there, it can often be confusing to know what natural eating really is. We’ve broken this down into 18 simple ways you can eat more naturally.
1. Think about food in the way that Mother Nature intended it to be
That means we should try and eat more fresh vegetables, fruit, herbs, nuts, seeds, meat and fish, and fewer foods that come from packets. Fresh, real foods are much healthier and taste much better than processed alternatives.
2. Shop organic & free range
Organic fruit and vegetables are grown without the use of chemicals or pesticides, which are commonly sprayed onto mass-produced foods, despite containing a cocktail of toxic and carcinogenic ingredients. Free-range refers to farming, particularly chickens/eggs, but also can refer to meat products. If a product is labelled as free-range, it means that the animal has been free to roam outside, instead of being locked in a shed or cage.
3. Grow your own
Growing your own vegetables was commonplace in the UK up until a few decades ago. But it is back on the rise again, as more people are realising the health and cost benefits, plus it’s a great activity to get all of the family involved in. Things like salad leaves, herbs, root vegetables and peas are easy to grow in the British climate and don’t need any specialised gardening knowledge or skills.
4. Read the labels
Look at the labels on the food you are buying. If it contains chemical names that you don’t recognise and can’t pronounce, then you probably shouldn’t eat it. Also look for the colour-coded warnings for sugar, fat and salt content, and definitely avoid any foods containing saturated and trans fats. Even foods that are labelled as ‘natural’ aren’t what they seem, so always read the label.
5. Go plant-based
Vegetarian or Vegan diets are not as difficult as you think. Most restaurants now cater to vegans, and you’ll find a whole range of delicious options available in the supermarket.
6. Try a Paleo diet
The Paleo diet, also known as Paleolithic, Stone-age or Caveman diet, is a diet based on the foods that early humans would have eaten. Broadly speaking, it includes meat, fish, fruit, vegetables and seeds, and avoids dairy, cereals and processed foods.
7. Look for “raw” foods
The word “raw” on food labels means that it is unrefined, unprocessed, and uncooked, meaning that it retains all of the nutrients and enzymes which are sometimes lost through cooking/processing. A raw food diet focuses on fruit, vegetables, salad, nuts and beans.
8. Be environmentally conscious
Try to think about the impact your food choices have on the environment and the world around you.
9. Reduce food wastage
Don’t throw away your leftovers – take them for your lunch the following day. Plan your weekly menu in advance, and buy only the ingredients and amounts that you need.
10. Avoid processed foods
Processed foods are mass-produced in factories, with added chemicals, preservatives, colourings, and often high levels of salt and sugar.
11. Steer clear of GMOs
GMO stands for genetically modified organism, which essentially means that it has been created in a lab. Definitely something to avoid if you want to follow a natural eating plan.
12. Forage for food
There are plenty of edible plants, berries and fungi growing in the UK countryside. Buy a guidebook and go out and explore! A word of warning though, make sure you are absolutely certain before you pick – if in doubt, leave it alone. Also avoid any plants growing in proximity to roads, as they will be covered in chemicals from car exhausts.
If you choose to eat meat and fish, think about long-term sustainability. Is this type of animal likely to become endangered? How has the animal been reared and killed? Consider some of the less-popular cuts of meat, to ensure that every part of the animal is being used and that nothing is being thrown away. Buy whole fish or whole joints of meat on the bone, and reserve the off-cuts to make soups and stocks.
14. Shop the seasons
Where does your food come from? Think about how far it has travelled around the world to reach your plate, and how long it has been in storage as it is shipped across continents. The fresher your food is, the more nutritional value it will have, and locally-grown seasonal produce is much better for the environment in terms of its carbon footprint.
15. Avoid unnecessary plastics
Anyone who takes an interest in the environment will know about the problems associated with our consumption of plastics. When you’re shopping for food, always buy loose fruit and vegetables wherever possible, use a refillable water bottle, and use cloth bags instead of plastic.
16. Be wary of “low fat” labels
Low fat or diet foods are often very misleading, as not all fats are bad for you. In fact, the body requires fats to function effectively; plus many low-fat foods are highly processed and filled with sugar and salt to add more flavour.
17. Cook from scratch
Busy, modern lifestyles often prevent us from finding the time to cook from scratch every night. But even if you cook in large batches once or twice a week, and freeze into portions then you’ll have quick and easy meals to last you all week. It doesn’t need to be difficult or complicated. Think about meals you can throw into a slow cooker in the morning, which will be ready to eat when you arrive home from work.
Natural eating all comes down to awareness. If we all make a more conscious effort to think about where our food comes from, the impact it has on the environment, and how it will affect our bodies, then it’s the best foundation for a healthier and more natural lifestyle.