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We know a lot of our readers are moms, so today, we’re featuring Jen Udashkin, also known as Clean Eating Goddess on Instagram.

She’s got all the tips for living a healthy lifestyle – and introducing your kids to one – all while maintaining a healthy mindset. We love her outlook on health and life, so we knew we needed to sit down for a chat with her to get all of her top tips.

Question 01

Tell us a bit about yourself and your health journey! From what we've read, this has been a long road for you, starting in childhood. Can you share a quick recap of what you went through when you were younger with our readers?

Since my earliest memories, I’ve grappled with persistent bellyaches. Diagnosed at birth with lactose intolerance, it was challenging to navigate dietary choices while wanting to fit in with other kids. By my early twenties, recurring bloating, heartburn, and general malaise made me want to get to the bottom of it once and for all. Following numerous screenings, I was diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and left to manage it independently. After lots of research into ingredients and a simultaneous diagnosis of celiac disease at the time for my mom, I began to grasp the profound link between food and overall well-being.

Question 02

When was your "lightbulb moment," when you realized you could eat in a way that didn't make you feel sick and bloated?

My mom’s celiac diagnosis made me realize how deeply food can affect our overall well being. Aside from stomach discomfort, issues with food gave my mom nutrient deficiencies, fatigue, and skin issues. At the time, I remember being shocked at how long it took her to get the diagnosis. Still today, we are often given remedies to help with symptoms instead of getting to the root cause.

Question 03

If you had to choose 5 foods for vibrant health, what would they be?

Hard to choose 5! But if I had to:

  • Avocado
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Kale
  • Bell peppers
  • Nuts & seeds

Question 04

You have kids. Do you find it difficult to convince them to eat healthfully? Or do you see trends in overall kids' food leaning in a better, healthier direction?

When I began introducing solids to my twins, fostering mindfulness around food was the most important goal. Instilling a healthy relationship with food in them, even more so than the benefits of healthy food itself, was what mattered to me when I started both feeding them solid foods and discussing food with them. It’s my belief that providing them with this foundational healthy relationship will empower them to make the right decisions for their well-being and encourage them to enjoy all of the diverse cuisines the world has to offer!

I’ve embraced baby-led weaning, and seen my girls develop a true love for fresh fruits and vegetables! Research suggests that early exposure to foods increases the likelihood of acceptance later in life. With that in mind, I consistently offer these foods, understanding that children, like adults, may experience fluctuating preferences. In my experience, persistence pays off, as they often rediscover their enjoyment for previously disliked foods.

Question 05

On that note, do you have any sneaky strategies for incorporating more vegetables and superfoods into a child's diet?

Food process or blend spinach, carrots, celery, onion and add into sauces. Start them on green smoothies early, so they develop the taste for them. And of course, my chocolate zucchini loaf never fails.

Question 06

For those without kids that are totally new to a "healthy eating" journey and don't deal with any specific symptoms like bloating or discomfort, where do you recommend starting? Do you have any favorite recipes from your site that are easy to make for those dipping their toes into a healthy lifestyle?

All of my recipes are designed to be super simple to make using real ingredients. If you’re cooking at home at all, you’re already ahead of the game! If you tend to opt for frozen foods or takeout, swapping just one of those meals each week to something homemade with fresh, quality ingredients, is a huge step in the right direction.

Question 07

Outside of healthy eating, how do you take care of yourself? How about your kids?

Once you become a parent, it’s easy to lose sight of yourself. Especially early on, you’re adjusting to a new and occasionally all-consuming role. As a mother, my kids will always be my top priority, but I’ve come to realize that neglecting my own well-being doesn’t serve them either.

Nearly two years into being home with them full-time, I found myself yearning to reclaim a sense of identity beyond just “mom.” I craved the routine of work, the ritual of dressing up, applying makeup, and reconnecting with the person I was before motherhood consumed every moment.

For me, daily walks have become essential for maintaining both physical and mental health. Another passion of mine is fashion. Post childbirth and pandemic, I made a commitment to bid farewell to the sweatsuits and embrace real clothing once again. Getting dressed may seem like a small gesture, but it’s a powerful act of self-care. Most days I work from home, but I get dressed now not for other people to see, but for me. That, to me, is the essence of true self-care.


Did you take any of Jen’s tips for helping your family live a health life? Tag us on social media using #casadesuna

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