If you’re like most people, creating a healthy diet – or, more specifically, following one – is an ongoing struggle. It’s not easy transforming eating patterns, and there are plenty of bad habits that can trip you up along the way. Luckily, you don’t have to develop a plan all on your own. That’s what people like chef and author Lily Simpson are for. The Detox Kitchen founder runs a health-conscious meal delivery service, operates multiple eat-in delis around London, parents (with another child on the way) and is writing an upcoming cookbook. In between it all she manages to maintain an intentional and health-conscious diet.
Her business motto is simple: the body will naturally detoxify if you are eating well and preparing food from scratch. “The idea was that you could have this really delicious, healthy homemade food that was delivered and after five days you would have significantly reduced the amount of refined sugar, wheat and dairy in your diet,” says Simpson.
Below, Simpson outlines five tips that will help you transform your diet with ease.
Keep it Basic
Don’t be overwhelmed by exotic sounding foods you’ve never heard of. The stuff you need is readily available at the grocery store. “Suddenly everyone is jumping on the phrase ‘superfood’. Superfoods are broccoli and salmon and brown rice. They are really simple ingredients that we have been eating for centuries,” explains Simpson.
Kick-start Your Day with Juice
There’s a simple way to change your diet, and it can happen first thing in the morning. Simpson frontloads nutrients into her day: “Get fruits and vegetables into your diet with juicing. I tend to have a vegetable-based drink once a day. Whether that’s a carrot-beet juice or broccoli and cucumber courgette. It’s a really good way to start your day because you have nutrients packed in right away.”
Find Your Go-to Snack
Snacking is a common downfall for people trying to eat healthy, but mini-meals aren’t inherently bad. “Having healthy snacks is really important,” says Simpson. “One of my favourite things at the moment is to take any nut or seed – pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, pistachio nuts – and roast them for a couple of minutes with some tamari sauce (wheat-free soy sauce) and sesame oil. It’s a delicious snack and it keeps you feeling full in between meals. One of my favourite superfoods is blueberries. I have them every day – they have more antioxidants than goji berries and they are half the price.”
Get Your Vegetables in at Lunch
Instead of eating celery sticks and mini carrots all day, Simpson suggests getting your vegetable fix in one go. “Everyone aspires to have five portions of veggies each day and you can do that at lunch time. Make a salad that has five different fruit and vegetables in it. Pair that with a healthy grain so it will be filling. Having balance in your lunch is very important.”
Have a Wholesome Dinner
A surefire to fail at healthy eating is to deprive yourself. Use the dinner meal to have what you want, just do it in moderation. “Do what you want at dinner,” says Simpson. “Have something wholesome and satisfying – if you want a vegetable lasagne, then have it. The most important thing is portion size and eating early – around 6:30 PM – so that you have time to digest it before bed.”