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You are what you eat. We’ve heard that saying since childhood, but in recent years, the spotlight on gut health and a balanced diet (not get skinny quick crash trends) have become the movement for looking & feeling good. We had the chance to chat with Jessica Bippen, MS, RD, and registered dietitian nutritionist (@nourishedbynutrition) to get some tips on uncovering the key to a well-rounded diet and prioritizing self care.
You talk a lot about self-care on your Instagram @nourishedbynutrition and we love that! How do you take time to “fill your cup” for an instant reset? And how do you prioritize me time without spreading yourself too thin?
Self-care is a daily practice for me. I love creating daily, weekly and monthly rituals. For instance, my daily rituals include waking up early, lighting a candle and doing my gratitude practice or journal. Weekly, I buy myself flowers or greenery to spruce up our home. It makes our space feel a little more put together and always brings a smile to my face. Monthly, I reflect on my goals and treat myself to a form of self-care I enjoy. Sometimes it’s getting my nails done other times it acupuncture or a message. ⠀ These rituals are little acts of self-care. Some are more of a treat than others but they all help me feel grounded. Incorporating actions like this is a great way to show yourself some love and help fill up your cup so you don’t spread yourself too thin.
Hormone health is an overlooked practice of creating meals suitable to your specific needs, especially for certain age groups more so than others. Which types of foods do you find important for women’s health and are there specific foods women should be eating at specific times of their lives?
The key is balancing protein, healthy fats and fiber at each meal. It’s important to not feat carbs or fat, as women need these foods for their hormones to function properly. However, I recommend choosing fiber-rich carbohydrates like veggies, root vegetables, winter squash, and gluten-free grains, and healthy fats like avocados, nuts seeds, and coconut. This formula works for all ages as a way to help balance hormones.
What do you eat typically in a day and why?
The foods I eat vary from day-to-day. This is essential making sure you are getting a variety of nutrients. I also believe that if you eat the same things day after day your body can build up a sensitivity to that food. Your gut bacteria need variety especially when it comes to fiber. The more diverse your diet the better. That being said, I make sure each meal has a protein, healthy fat and fiber-rich carbohydrate. I also try to get in greens at most meals. This is the structure I follow to help keep me feeling satisfied and my blood sugar stable.
Which foods do you recommend eating prior to a workout? And afterward?
Some people can tolerate eating before a workout while others can’t. I recommend listening to your body and figuring out what works best for you! If you’re one of the people who need something on your stomach prior to a workout, I recommend a combination of a carbohydrate and a little fat or protein. A good example of this is peanut butter toast, a banana, and almond butter, or Simple Mills Crackers and hummus. The key is having some carbohydrate to keep you energized throughout your workout.
Do you have a favorite go-to recipe to share with us that’s fast, easy and best of all nutritious!?
As the weather’s getting colder I’m a huge fan one-pot meals like soups and chilis! I love making a big match of my pumpkin chili to have on hand throughout the week. It’s so flavorful and nutritious. https://nourishedbynutrition.com/vegan-pumpkin-chili/
(first written Oct 2019. special thanks to Susan Suarez and Jessica Bippen)