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Why Real Food Is the Secret to You and Your Family Sticking With Healthy Habits

by | Aug 28, 2017

“The way that you look and the way that you see yourself are not one and the same.” – Jamie Dana

In this episode I talk with Jamie, a health counselor and foodist success story.

Jamie and I have similar backgrounds and a lot in common. We both had mothers who raised us on packaged diet foods and jazzercise videos. And we both had powerful “a-ha” moments at the farmers market that changed how we approached our healthstyle forever.

Jamie tells her story about how she was able to introduce healthier foods into her and her family’s lives, and the impact it has made on their outlook of the world.

Her tips on how she turned her kids into more adventurous eaters and look at food completely differently are invaluable.

We also discuss what processed foods do to your brain, how tiny steps lead to huge successes and how living in line with your core values can bring rewards that are so much larger than what you could ever have imagined.

Jamie reminds us that eating well is not complicated and that how you feel on the inside changes how you look on the outside. She is now an avid supporter of the farmers market, lives a happy and healthy life and no longer gives dieting a second thought.

Prepare to be inspired as you listen to Jamie’s journey of how she was able to find and commit to a healthstyle that both her and her family love.

Wish you had more time to listen to the podcast? I use an app called Overcast (no affiliation) to play back my favorite podcasts at faster speeds, dynamically shortening silences in talk shows so it doesn’t sound weird. It’s pretty rad.

 

Related links:

Ferry Plaza Farmers Market in San Francisco

The Hungry Brain: Outsmarting the Instincts That Make Us Overeat by Stephan J. Guyenet, Ph.D.

Rancho Gordo Beans

Weighty Matters – Yoni Freedhoff

Nutritionism 101: How to See Past Nutrition Marketing

Taste Psychology: Learning To Love Foods You Don’t Like

11 Proven Ways To Get Kids To Eat More Vegetables

Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us by Michael Moss

Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think by Brian Wansink

Jamie Dana:

Dana Therapeutic Services

Dana Therapeutic Services Facebook page

 

Listen:

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If you’d like to be a guest on the show, please fill out the form here and tell us your story.

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Why I Don’t Bargain Shop for Food

by | Mar 15, 2017

Farmers market it Portland, OR

Money is a touchy subject. Even without bringing up finances directly, people like me who encourage others to eat Real Food often get branded as elitist out of hand.

I get it. Finding and affording fresh food can be difficult or impossible for some people, and that is heartbreaking. But I don’t think that should make the entire subject off limits.

Food is a complex topic that includes issues related to health, economics, culture, human rights, animal welfare and the environment/sustainability. We also need to make food decisions multiple times a day in order to survive.

I consider all these things when deciding what to purchase for myself and my family, and know first hand what kinds of tradeoffs come up when choosing what to eat. Over the years both my priorities and financial means have changed dramatically, and ultimately evolved into the system I use today.

Here I’ll take you through my thought process in making food decisions, including how I’ve adapted to lower and higher income levels.

Of course none of this is intended as a judgement or condemnation on anyone else’s decisions. Everyone’s values are personal and equally valid, and obviously you need to do what works for you and your family.

My goal here is to shed some light on a difficult subject and hope it provides some clarity for those who are trying to make heads or tails of these issues.

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How to Be Thankful After Campaign 2016: Foodist Edition

by | Nov 16, 2016

It’s been a heck of week, hasn’t it?

Like many Americans I’ve spent the days since the election trying to process the brave new world that we live in. For me this campaign season has been about more than politics (don’t worry, I won’t go there). I’ve found myself reacting emotionally in a deep, fundamental way to many of the events that occurred over the course of the campaign season and it has caused me to reevaluate my relationship with several of the core pillars of stability in my life.

Some of the things that came up for me are issues that I write about regularly here at Summer Tomato. These are topics I’ve thought deeply about for years, but suddenly I see them in a new light. And while much of what has changed for me started with a negative emotion, the longer I sit with these feelings the more I realize the shift I’ve experienced has brought me closer to the truth. And for this I am thankful.

With Thanksgiving around the corner (and my birthday on Friday) I want to share with you some of the insights I’ve had. Unlike most of what I write here, this is not intended to be prescriptive advice you should follow. Instead my goal is to simply show the messy process of refining your own values when life makes it necessary.

If you do happen to share some of these values (there are no right or wrong values so don’t freak out if you don’t), I hope you can find something to be thankful for this week as well.

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FOR THE LOVE OF FOOD: Pilates changes your brain, all your food is fake, and the big problem with people pleasing

by | Sep 9, 2016
For the Love of Food

For the Love of Food

Welcome to Friday’s For The Love of Food, Summer Tomato’s weekly link roundup. It’s been a few weeks so I went ahead and included 15 excellent articles instead of the usual 10.

This week pilates changes your brain, all your food is fake, and the big problem with people pleasing.

Too busy to read them all? Try this awesome free speed reading app to read at 300+ wpm. So neat!

I also share links on Twitter @summertomato and the Summer Tomato Facebook page. I’m very active on all these sites and would love to connect with you.

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Is One of These Limiting Beliefs Preventing You From Getting Healthy?

by | Apr 12, 2016
Photo by donnierayjones

Photo by donnierayjones

One of my hobbies is asking every random person I talk to how they feel about their health. The stories I hear range from super sad to downright hilarious. Yet despite the diversity, a few common themes emerge.

Most people agree that health is important. And while answers may vary about what actually constitutes “good health,” few people believe they have achieved it or are satisfied with where they are at.

Where things really get interesting though is when I ask someone what stops them from being healthier. Surprisingly few people give hedonistic reasons such as “I love junk food too much” or “I just don’t want to cut back on TV,” although I do hear it occasionally.

Instead, the majority of people I speak with give one of two answers:

  1. Family responsibilities take up too much time and energy
  2. Work (or school) responsibilities take up too much time and energy

Sometimes they say both.

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The Heartbreaking Story of the Joyless Splurge

by | Oct 6, 2014

Photo by Kalexanderson

Back in the early 90s I was offered a choice. Actually that isn’t quite right, because at the time it didn’t feel like a choice.

At an age when I was way too young to be thinking about these things there seemed to be two paths I could follow. One promised beauty, confidence and happiness. The other seemed boring, average and all around disappointing. Without hesitating, I swallowed the blue pill.

From the outside the dieting path seemed so glamorous. With my natural inclination toward perfectionism, the most seductive illusion––and the one that’s been hardest to break––was that of control. The myth I believed was that if I could restrict my eating enough, then I could control my weight and appearance. The confidence and happiness I envisioned stemmed directly from this control.

The sad irony is that dieting does the opposite of what I believed, and in fact robbed me of control. As humans we are not hardwired to withstand indefinite restriction and deprivation, particularly when it comes to food. The more we try to restrict and deprive ourselves of the things we crave, the harder it gets to hold onto the reigns.

But that doesn’t stop us from trying. For the truly dedicated dieters who still believe restriction offers control, we dig our heels in deeper and hold on with all our might. This manifests as some terribly odd behavior, like bingeing on foods we don’t really like.

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Sugar’s Sweet Spot: How to Eat Less Without Saying No

by | Sep 24, 2014

Photo by pamlau.com

Recently I explained how restrictive dieting makes losing weight harder than it needs to be, not easier. But one reader wondered how my advice about limiting sugar and processed foods jives with this concept:

You say that mainstream diets encourage nutritionism and cut out groups of food like fat, gluten and sugar. However, much of what you discuss also encourages limiting sugar. How do you differentiate the two?

Am I hypocrite or trying to pull a fast one? Is this just a matter of semantics? As usual in biology, the truth is more complicated.

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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Foodists

by | May 12, 2014

Photo by 55Laney69

Have you ever searched all over your house for your phone or your keys then realized they were in your pocket (or worse, your hand) the entire time?

Sometimes we are so focused on solving a difficult problem that the simple, obvious solution eludes us. This is how I felt when I discovered the solution to my life-long battle with food and body weight.

Since food caused me so much stress I assumed it was the primary cause of my problems. It took me nearly two decades to realize that since I couldn’t fight it, my only choice was to embrace it.

Now that I’ve spent over six years as a foodist the way I eat and deal with food seems so obviously correct that it feels like commonsense. Still millions of people struggle with these issues daily, searching desperately for a fix that’s right under our noses.

A foodist knows that food is the answer to, not the cause of our health and weight issues. Eating is essential to our survival and our innate drive to do it is too strong to override for long. The solution lies in constructing habits that work with us, not against us, balancing our needs for both health and happiness through food.

While there are many different paths a foodist can take to optimize our healthstyle, the most successful rely on seven core habits that have the biggest impact on our long-term success.

You might notice that none of these depend upon a specific food or nutrient.
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For the Love of Food

by | Mar 21, 2014
For The Love of Food

For The Love of Food

Welcome to Friday’s For The Love of Food, Summer Tomato’s weekly link roundup.

This week saturated fat is exonerated (again), a simple trick to motivate yourself to exercise, and how dad’s diet affects baby’s health.

Want to see all my favorite links? (There’s lots more). Be sure to follow me on on Delicious. I also share links on Twitter @summertomato,  Google+ and the Summer Tomato Facebook page. I’m very active on all these sites and would love to connect with you. (And yes, I took that pepper heart pic myself).
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For the Love of Food

by | Oct 25, 2013
For The Love of Food

For The Love of Food

Welcome to Friday’s For The Love of Food, Summer Tomato’s weekly link roundup.

This week the nutrition of raw vs cooked veggies, the tremendous benefits of sleep for health, and how personal values motivate your food choices.

Want to see all my favorite links? (There’s lots more). Be sure to follow me on on Delicious. I also share links on Twitter @summertomato,  Google+ and the Summer Tomato Facebook page. I’m very active on all these sites and would love to connect with you. (And yes, I took that pepper heart pic myself).

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