Eat and drink the right stuff

Healthy salmon salad, natural human food
© Ali Elangasinghe

The Happy Guide diet is a big step back to eating natural human foods — the foods we evolved to eat over millions of years; primarily fruits, vegetables, nuts/seeds, meat, poultry, seafood and eggs.

Our bodies thrive on these foods because they’re the foods we’re adapted to.

Some modern foods are allowed but the ones that cause the most damage — gluten grains and most dairy, need to be avoided by most people to be in the best of health.

A simple plan that gets the most out of your diet without feeling restrictive is a good way to go. And good diet habits means that preparing food becomes a no-brainer, and you get all the benefits without the stress. A typical day might be…

  • Breakfast: Smoothie made with a banana and black forest berries (cherries, blackcurrants, blackberries, black grapes), coconut milk , some protein powder and a handful of nuts.
  • Lunch: Papaya. Salad made with mixed leaves, tomato or pepper, olives, salmon, rice and an olive oil, garlic and lemon dressing.
  • Dinner: Tangerines. Slow cooked lamb stew with butternut squash and fresh seasonal vegetables with butter.
  • Snacks: Veg crudités with dip (guacamole, salsa, hummus etc), fruit and yogurt, nuts.

If you want to go really simple, fast and healthy, then just make up two portions of salad and have half for lunch and half for dinner. Food is fuel remember, good nutrition for your body. You can combine any cooked meat, fish or eggs, with raw or cooked veg, a source of starch like potato or rice, some salad leaves and a quick home-made dressing. Tasty food fast.

By having a consistent structure to your diet, it means that you are fueling your body in the best way without the headache of what to eat. For example here’s some quick meal ideas:

  • Plums. Salmon with sweet chilli sauce, sweet potato, salad leaves, grilled eggplant and beef tomato, fresh dill
  • Blueberry and lychee salad. Pork medallions with apple sauce, salad leaves, roast parsnips and butternut squash, fresh oregano
  • Baked cod parcels with tartare sauce, salad leaves, spicy potato wedges, quick steamed peas and carrots, fresh parsley
  • Cantaloupe. Spanish omelet with sautéed mushrooms and wilted spinach
  • Peaches. Roast beef, romaine, coleslaw, roasted yams with sage and red onion wedges
  • Figs. Chicken tajine with onion, ginger, honey, sweet potato, yellow bell peppers and mange tout
  • Watermelon. Shrimp/prawns, with butter lettuce, avocado, scallions, cherry tomatoes and black olives, Italian dressing, fresh basil
  • Your chilli beef or stir-fry favorites served with rice

The simple combination of fruit + protein + starch + vegetables + sauce can be used to create endless varieties of meals you’ll never get bored of. It’s best to work out one week of dinners to start with and get used to preparing those, and then you can add recipes/meal ideas as you go and keep your favorites.

The Happy Guide diet also comes in weight loss versions with all the quantities of each food already worked out for you. That way you can stay on track without having to count calories.

So, having a solid structure means that every single day you are fueling your body in the best way possible, that will keep you energetic, feeling good and free of diseases in the future, because what’s on your fork today, determines your health outcomes in the years ahead.

Free chapter

Michael Kinnaird is the author of Happy Guide, the result of a 20 year exploration into what works for health and happiness.

Read Chapter 1 “The Happiness Secret”
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4 thoughts on “Eat and drink the right stuff

  1. Hi
    In your book you advice to use protein powder in the morning Smoothies. Which kind of powder is the best the cheese protein or the soy protein? ( I am asking because you also advice to keep from dairy products)…


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