Top 4 Foods to Remove From Your Diet Today

Top 4 Foods to Remove From Your Diet Today

"Once I've added some nice, beautiful, healthy whole foods into my diet, which foods should I squish out first?". This is a good question, so here are my recommendations:

Lessons from the Mediterranean

Lessons from the Mediterranean

Maybe it's because I live in the Okanagan Valley with its lovely Tuscan feel. Or maybe it's because I love whole, healthy, yet simple food. Whatever it is, I love mediterranean cooking.

Why We Don’t Eat What We “Should” Be Eating

I need to start with a spotlight on the word “should”…it’s a big pet peeve of mine. We’re constantly weighed down with what we “should” or “shouldn’t” be doing. We “should” all over ourselves! This is not helpful. The moment we use the word “should” we judge ourselves.

Look at these two sentences:

  1. I should be eating more vegetables.
  2. I could be eating more vegetables.

The latter is a statement, while the former has a big weight of judgment added to it. After a while, all of these “shoulds” we fill ourselves with start spilling out and we start to tell others what they “should” be doing.

“Should” doesn’t help us move forward, it holds us down. When it comes to diet we all know what we “should” be eating, but few of us do it. Let’s throw away the unhelpful word “should” and replace it with non-judgmental words like “could”, “can”, or even “will”.

Ahhhh, that feels better :). So, why don’t we eat the healthy diet that we could be eating?

Chocolate chunks
Chocolate chunks

Our daily diet is made up from a collection of decisions, and I feel that to get to the core of our dietary dilemmas we need to look at what drives these decisions. My hypothesis is that our state of mind when we are choosing what to eat drives what we choose to eat. Let me give you some examples:

Scenario 1: You come home from work and you’re STARVING! You could eat almost anything that’s put in front of you. You’re craving a fast hit of sugar or carbs, and you want it now. Your energy is low and the prospect of spending the next hour chopping, cooking, and waiting for dinner is very unappealing. So…what do you do? Make a big healthy meal, or just grab some chocolate from the cupboard? Or, do you just pick up something quick for dinner on your way home?


Scenario 2: You come home from work and you're feeling a bit hungry. You feel like you could eat in the next hour or two. Your energy is pretty good and you would really like to eat a big pile of vegetables (yes, this scenario is possible). You look in the fridge and put together a gorgeous coconut milk curry full of veggies, chickpeas, served over brown rice. The process is enjoyable and ready in about 40 minutes.

What is the difference between Scenario 1 and 2? You might say #2 is almost impossible, or only happens once in a blue moon…or only happens for super-healthy people who don’t eat anything close to a “normal diet”. …what if I said you’re dead wrong?

What if the difference between Scenario 1 and 2 is simply the difference between an imbalance in blood sugar and balanced blood sugar? What if Scenario 2 was possible for everyone with only a few small changes to your diet?

We tend to think of blood sugar issues only in relation to Type II Diabetes or Hypoglycemia, but the fact is many of us are dealing with mild-to-moderate blood sugar issues every day. These are imbalances we feel, but don’t turn up on blood tests. These blood sugar issues lead to weight gain, low or fluctuating energy, sugar/carb cravings, and a lack of motivation. They affect our life every day and are the driving factor behind poor food choices.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Do you feel Scenario 1 at least one time per week?
  2. Is hunger immediate? Do you need to eat relatively quickly (within the next hour) when you feel hungry?
  3. Do you have energy dips throughout the day?
  4. Do you crave sugar, carbs, or sugary drinks throughout the day?
  5. Do you carry food with you all the time just in case you suddenly feel hungry?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, your blood sugar isn’t balanced.

Balancing your blood sugar is surprisingly easy and it allows you to make better decisions with your diet. Imagine having one hour or more to make a meal when you feel hungry! If you had this time, what would you make? That big healthy meal sounds more appealing now, doesn't it :)?

The first step towards finding balance is to look at how food makes you feel. How do you feel immediately after eating? How about after one hour? How long can you go before you feel like you're “starving”?

Balanced energy, weight-loss, and a healthy diet are all within reach with just a few small changes! Starting today, stop thinking about what you “should” be doing, and look at how your current diet is affecting your decisions.

Lisa Kilgour Headshot
Lisa Kilgour Headshot

Lisa Kilgour, Registered Holistic Nutritionist from, loves to help others find balance and be happy.

Lisa has clients from all over Canada and consults in person, and via phone and Skype. Contact Lisa today and take the first step towards good health!

How to Stay Healthy This Winter

At this time of the year I'm asked the same question over and over again - How do I stay healthy this winter? My answer -  trust your body. Why? Because, when we give our body everything it needs, your immune system can fight any virus that comes around. Seems too simple, right?

We all know how important our immune system is to our overall health. Everyday it's searching our body for viruses, bacteria, and anything else that doesn't belong there. Like our digestive system, our immune system functions best when we're happy and relaxed. If you're stressed, how well is your immune system working? Think about it...if there was a bear chasing you, how much would your body really care about fighting a virus? It would be a pretty low priority compared to your immediate survival. This is how your body reacts to a virus when you are stressed about anything (otherwise known as fight or flight :).

When you're stressed your body doesn't care about your long-term survival. You're either stressed OR you're fighting off a cold or flu.

Our immune system has "guards" set up in our throat to signal the arrival and trap any viruses or bacteria that are attempting entry. These guards are our tonsils and adenoids. Put your hand up if you have had your tonsils and/or adenoids removed....yup, that's what I thought. Many of us will have our hands up as this was a very routine procedure until fairly recently. As well, our immune system has its own super highway (the lymphatic system) to move immune cells throughout the body. This amazing super highway is large but doesn't have a central pump (like the heart). It moves when you move. When you're moving around your lymph is moving around as well. It's one of the many reasons why regular exercise keeps your immune system strong!

What can you do to help your body fight off any infection that comes your way? Here are some simple steps you can take: 1. Reduce Stress - you're either stressed OR you're fighting off that bug! So stressing about getting sick is very counterproductive :) 2. Remove White Sugar - completely and totally. Studies have found that a moderate intake of refined sugar will suppress the immune system for up to 5 hours! FIVE hours! Yikes! 3. Identify Food Sensitivities - Food sensitivities can overwhelm the immune system and may allow things it should be fighting (viruses and bacteria) through its defenses. 4. Exercise - Keep your lymph moving! 5. Garlic - Its a great way to keep vampires away and its a potent anti-viral and anti-bacterial...when raw. If you're worried about the smell, simply feed everyone in your household raw garlic. Believe me, no one will notice :)

Remember, your body knows how to fight off anything that comes around. If you do come down with a cold or a flu this winter, rest, drink lots of water, and stay far, far away from white sugar. You'll be better in no time - and now your body has natural anti-bodies to that virus :). And as always, feed your body with real food. Eat More Real Food (sound familiar :)