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Behind The Spice: Eating Healthy

Feb 27, 2022

How the 80/20 Rule Became Bina’s Lifestyle

Bina Mortiram

Eating healthy can be easy, especially when you’re surrounded by family who make fresh homemade meals every day. For most of my youth my grandmother and mother cooked at home making sure we ate dinner together as a family, and most importantly, we didn't have the option to eat junk food or fast food. Because of this, I never had issues with weight, my health or lack of energy. But, like many, when I started college, my life changed and began to revolve around fast food, chips, skipping meals, and boozy beverages! I was in awe of all the options! After college, those unhealthy habits carried over into my professional life. I was traveling, going to client dinners and working crazy hours - turning to packaged meals, fast food and quick snacks. Not only did I see the difference in my body but my skin wasn’t healthy, I was always getting sick and had no energy.

After several years of this unhealthy lifestyle, I reached the point where I decided to take back control over my health. This was not me and I wanted to get back to a time when I felt healthy and energetic - a time when homemade meals and fresh food were at the center. I started small, picking just a few things I could manage and kept adding. Finally, I found some balance with the 80/20 rule, perhaps a result of my math mindset. 80% of the time I try to maintain healthy habits and healthy eating; the other 20%, let's have some fun. Over time I developed a top 10 list as my guide to this new lifestyle. I share this with you because it really has changed my life and brought me back to a healthier version of me!

  1. Drink Water – at least eight 8 oz cups. When I wake up, I drink my 1st glass of water, always before coffee. I drink water right before each meal; breakfast, lunch and dinner. Then I only have 4 more glasses to go during the day.
  2. Movement – for me, it’s all about the morning. I love an early spin class, going running, doing yoga, or getting some weight training in. If it’s beautiful out, I go on a long walk and listen to a book or podcast. My apple watch keeps me accountable to those 10k steps - there is nothing more satisfying than watching those rings close.
  3. Plan and Prepare – I have committed to eating home cooked meals at least 4 days a week. The weekend is when I prepare my menu, grocery shop, turn my music on and cook my meals for the week. Dance a little, chop a little, sing a little, cook!
  4. Breakfast Time – I used to skip breakfast. Coffee was my breakfast! Now I make oatmeal during the week. Keeping it easy – oats, blueberries, banana, peanut butter, water; mix, cook and eat.
  5. Always Add Vegetables – I make sure all of my meals have a variety of vegetables including dark leafy greens. Always adding some spinach to that curry dish, trying a smoothie with kale or adding lots of cabbage to those fish tacos.
  6. Limit Refined Grains and Sugar – go for whole grains, high-fiber breads and cereals. I love making lentil dishes or using whole-grain pasta with lots of vegetables. For dessert, I started reducing the sugar by using our Gold Milk Nu Spice blend which kicks up the flavor making that dessert more “heart-healthy” and very satisfying.
  7. Minimize Meats – I typically make 1 lb. of meat last for 8 meals. By adding lots of vegetables, I don’t need all the meat.
  8. Weekend Fun – I save my cocktails for the weekend but if I feel like having a glass of wine once in a while during the week, I go for it!
  9. Add Spice – spices like ginger, cayenne pepper, turmeric, garlic, and cinnamon are part of my daily food intake. With SugarRoti pre-measured spice blends, the work is done for me!
  10. Black Coffee – coffee is my joy! I look forward to it every morning. During the week it’s black coffee with a touch of oat milk. Then on the weekend, bring on the latte please!

Eating healthy is a personal choice – including what “healthy” means to you. There is no one right answer. For me, healthy means that I enjoy a bit of everything; follow my 80/20 rule, listen to my body and I have fun.

“Health is a relationship between you and your body” – Terri Guillemets

What’s your healthy lifestyle 80/20 rule or Top 10 List? We would love to hear from you in the comments below or share with us on Instagram.