One of the main reasons I don’t ‘do’ Instagram is that ten minutes browsing through reams of aspirational images related to nutrition and health leave me in despair: my kitchen isn’t stylishly minimalist, I don’t hashtag all my thoughts with #eatclean and if I see one more picture of smashed avocado and poached egg I may well break the internet.
There’s a fine line between being inspirational and unrealistic and for me, so much of what is online is contrived and unachieveable. When you’re struggling to balance the stress of poor health, family needs and work demands, the last thing you need is to feel that the small changes you are making to your diet – however positive they are – are Just. Not. Enough. And this is the negative power social media can have.
So, in the interests of honesty and sharing I’m going to give you a glimpse of what my fridge looks like after the weekly shop. (You wouldn’t want to see it beforehand…the sight of a lonely lemon and scrag-end of celery inspires no one…)
Lets start at the bottom…
Salad drawers: these contain courgettes, celery, avocadoes, lemons, an aubergine and some mixed peppers. Mixture of organic and non-organic, depending on what’s available and what I can pay that week.
First shelf: packets of free range chicken thighs, bag of potatoes and a cauliflower. I do prefer to buy a whole organic chicken, roast it in coconut oil on a Sunday then use the rest of it during the week, culminating in a chicken & veg soup (I recently created a chicken, ginger and butternut squash soup..divine…) However we had friends over for dinner that day and chicken thighs were needed.
The cauliflower will be turned into cauliflower and lentil dhal which does me for several days as either breakfast or lunch, accompanied by yoghurt, mint & cucumber dip.
Second shelf: 2 cartons of coconut water; I’m currently taking Spirulina each day for it’s amazing anti-inflammatory, anti-histamine and antioxidant powers. If you’ve tried spirulina, you’ll know how strong it tastes and how it needs to be mixed with something to lift the flavour – coconut water and blueberries work perfectly!
Asparagus, spring onions, carrots, cucumber and tub of blueberries.
Third shelf: bag of spinach because my own crop has been an abysmal failure this summer; selection of cheeses (cheddar, goats cheese and lacto-free cheese to satisy everyone in the house); limes, local strawberries, free range organic eggs and a tub of butter. It’s a regular intention to make my own spreadable butter by mixing a tablesoon of olive oil into a chuck of organic butter. Sometimes I do it, more often than not I forget, so we have a tub of spreadable butter to hand.
The bottle of sweet chilli sauce is a rarity as this stuff is heaving with sugar, but the meal we cooked for friends included it as a dip. This shelf frequently holds a dessert too as Mr Nutrition In York cannot resist sticky toffee pudding.
Top shelf: broccoli, plain live soya yoghurt, ground flaxseeds – essential for mixing with my morning porridge or adding to smoothies – full fat mayonnaise and tomato ketchup.
So, no secret ingredients here, and no glamorous chic kitchen. I’m certainly not the world’s best cook (ask Mr NIY, he’ll tell all!) but I am living proof you can change how you feel with everyday foods and learn how to understand what your body needs to thrive.
Confused about what to eat?
Feeling stressed, exhausted and strung out?
Struggling with crazy hormones or erratic digestion?
Drop me a line and lets get you back on the path to vitality & wellbeing…