GMB Transformation: Meet Our May Wholefoodie!
It's that time of month again! We love seeing how we have helped inspire people in the GMB Fam on their wellness journey - from learning how to read nutrition labels, making healthy food swaps and adopting lifelong habits from our regular challenges. Here, we chat to member of the GMB fam and Wholefoodie, Melissa Couvret. Keep reading as she takes us through her health story!
How did you eat growing up?
Growing up my mum always cooked for the family, and we would eat together as a family at the dinner table every night. Our meals were usually carbohydrate based with lots of pasta and rice dishes, always with a protein source and a few veggies thrown in there too! Mum would also pack our school lunches which were fairly basic and a standard lunchbox meal, usually a sandwich with maybe a muesli bar and a sweeter snack as well (anyone remember roll-ups? They used to be my favourite!)
How do you feel now that you eat wholefoods?
I feel amazing and I have so much more energy and an excitement for life now that I’m fuelling my body in a new and better way. I never knew how good I could feel simply by changing my diet and my lifestyle, and I am so glad that this is now my new normal. I look and feel much better choosing nutritious options to fuel my body with. More than anything I love the way that I feel eating this way and the way that my body responds to it.
How would you describe your food philosophy?
My food philosophy is to eat a very balanced diet, and I have quite a solid routine. From Monday to Friday, I will eat very similar meals for convenience and on the weekends I add in some different recipes as I have more time to plan and cook and I also make room for more ‘soul foods’ to enjoy with friends and family. I believe that no foods are off limits, but a majority of your diet should be nutritionally balanced and rich in wholefoods.
What made you switch to wholefoods?
I used to watch what people were eating online on social media, and then I started doing more research into nutrition. I began adding healthier food choices into my diet and then I realised how much better I felt when eating a diet which incorporated a lot more wholefoods than I was previously eating. If I had days where I would go back to eating how I previously would I felt sluggish and gross, and I knew this was because of what I was putting into my body. As soon as I would go back to my newfound healthier way of eating I would feel a lot better, so knew this is the way that I needed, and wanted to eat to fuel my body.
Was the change difficult and if so how did you overcome this?
At first it was difficult because I thought I had to change everything. I saw the way people on Instagram were eating and immediately wanted to be like them. I thought cutting out everything I loved and removing meat, dairy, sugar and gluten must be the answer (it wasn’t). It took a while to find a balance in what was realistic and what made me feel my best. Making slower changes proved to be a lot easier for me to stick to and also to enjoy.
Any tips or advice for those out there trying to make the switch to a wholefood lifestyle?
Start small. Don’t think you need to overhaul your life, just make small changes. You can eat the same foods but swap for a healthier, wholefood alternative. That way you won’t feel deprived or restricted. There are so many options and it can be overwhelming to start with. I would recommend to do some research yourself, or subscribe to a box like this which will send you awesome options every month and open your eyes to what’s available. I think one of the biggest barriers for me was not knowing what was available and how many alternatives are actually out there. Once you start looking into it a bit more you realise there’s actually a lot of simple swaps and changes that can be made. Something as simple as adding in a piece of fruit or a few extra vegetables spread throughout the day can make a massive difference!
After making the switch, how did you feel after and did you notice things you could do that you couldn't do before?
Whilst I was making the switch I actually went through a health journey myself where I was diagnosed with a medical condition called Interstitial Cystitis. Overhauling my diet was exactly what I needed to help with this condition and it immediately helped to alleviate my pain, improve my wellbeing and my quality of life. I couldn’t believe something as simple as making a few dietary changes could be responsible for whether I was in constant pain within my body or not! Despite all of this though after changing my diet I also noticed that it definitely helped with my energy levels throughout the day, I have clearer skin, I sleep a lot better and my recovery after training at the gym is better as well.
Is there anything you can do now or you have done, which you once thought would have been possible?
I never thought I would be the person to enjoy living such a healthy, balanced lifestyle. I now enjoy putting time aside for planning all of my meals, grocery shopping and meal prepping every weekend. I honestly could never go back, and I’m so proud of myself for making these changes to better myself and also to honour myself and my body.
What are 4 staple products that are always in your shopping trolley?
I always buy bananas as I love to eat these as a snack, on toast, as a topping for pancakes, frozen in smoothies or even in nice cream! Berries are another staple, especially frozen berries with strawberries being my all time favourite. Brown rice is a staple carbohydrate source as it’s convenient, yummy and goes with most of my meals. My last staple choice would be fresh herbs! They are so versatile and can really elevate almost any dish. Dill and basil would probably have to be my two favourites.
How has GMB helped you on your health journey?
It’s helped to open my eyes to some new and different products that are available. It’s a better alternative than spending hours walking up and down the supermarket aisles, reading nutrition labels and spending a lot of money on products that you don’t know if you’ll like or not. I love subscribing to this box because you know that everything you receive is a wonderful, wholesome option, and it’s all specially handpicked and delicious!
What has been your all-time favourite product in our box and why?
I loved the hemp seed oil as it’s a product I may otherwise have skimmed over in the shop but was actually lovely to use, and the fact it was a full sized product was amazing! I also love any of the cookie selections because who doesn’t love a good cookie?
Ready to make the switch yourself? You can subscribe to our monthly GoodnessMe Boxes here! Don't forget to tag us on Instagram @goodnessmebox, we love seeing what you get up to!