Joyous Blog

What is the Healthiest Diet?

Pretty much every workshop I teach I get asked this question:

"What is the healthiest diet, Joy?"

And more often than not this is the follow-up question I get...

"Are you vegan?"

The answer to both of these might surprise you which I share in my latest video. 

I eat the healthiest diet ever! ;) Maybe you've heard of it -- it's the Joy Mary Susanne McCarthy diet!! What does that mean? I eat the foods that make me thrive.

I eat whole, unprocessed, high quality, delicious plant and animal-based foods.

You may notice that my instagram feed is full of a lot of plant-based foods and this is why many assume that I don't eat animal foods but I don't label myself "vegan". That's because I eat a lot of veggies, salads and I have a smoothie every single day. But.... I also enjoy a grass-fed burger once in a while, I LOVE fish (we eat it 2-3 times per week), I love eggs especially frittatas, I enjoy cheese, like Manchego and halloumi (both are super yummy sheep milk cheese-based) and I never feel guilty or pressured to live up to anybody, any group or any label. As my good friend Meghan has always said: Labels are for tin cans. 

There have been comments on my YouTube channel from people absolutely shocked that I would eat a chicken burger, but honestly, I don't care! Why? Because what matters is that I eat the food that makes me thrive. It doesn't matter what anyone else thinks.

If you've been eating a certain way for a long time and you're still having digestive problems or other health issues, then maybe you're not eating right for you.

So what should you eat?

To find out, insert your first name here: _________, and your last name here: _______, put them together, and that's your diet! Meaning, eat what makes you feel your best. 

If you're not sure where to start. Start here. Try my recipes! They are nourishing, delicious and there is TONS of variety and free of common allergens and food sensitivities. If you need additional guidance based on any health concerns I recommend you book a session with a qualified holistic nutritionist or Naturopathic Doctor. 

As always, I look forward to your comments and suggestions below. If there is something you want to learn about then ask me below and I will consider it for an upcoming video. 

Have a joyous day!

France   •   July 21, 2017

That is so true ... thanks for sharing . I really enjoy your articles and videos as they are very informative and interesting ๐Ÿ™‚

Rachel Molenda   •   July 24, 2017

Hey France! Thanks so much for your kind words :) We're grateful to have you in the joyous community! Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Madeleine   •   July 22, 2017

I agree, it took a long time to find what is right for me, no "diet" can do what eating plant-based does (for me), I was diagnosed celiac, 15 years ago but still, cutting off the gluten still left me "dragging". Three months ago, I decided to go plant-based - Wow - I sleep better, I'm happier (the depression subsides), the numbers of the scale are going down, my focus improved, I look younger (I'm 58), I'm healing my gut, and more, and more every day. There are great sites, like yours, many recipes, ideas, suggestions that makes this easy, and good, so good. My taste buds improved, my cravings gone. Lemon water and a smoothie to start my day, :) I may re-introduce meat, eggs, fish down the road but for now I am enjoying this journey. No "commercial diet" ever did what eating fresh, whole, unprocessed plant-based is doing, it was there all along, it's that simple and it's also great on the pocket book. Thank you for your teaching, I love the community you create.

Rachel Molenda   •   July 24, 2017

That's amazing Madeleine! So happy you found your "Madeleine" diet! It sounds like you are totally thriving and that's whats most important :) Thank you for sharing! Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Kelly   •   July 22, 2017

I 100% agree. I changed to a "vegan" diet because that is what made me feel my best. My husband eats eggs and meat which makes him feel his best. We should eat what we want and for no one else. Thank you for posting this.

Rachel Molenda   •   July 24, 2017

Yes! Love this! You go Kelly (and Kelly's husband!) :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Sara   •   July 22, 2017

Joy this video is exactly what people need to hear. It's extremely inspiring. Thanku for the message

Rachel Molenda   •   July 24, 2017

Sara! Thank you so much for the kind words! We really appreciate it :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Caroline   •   July 24, 2017

Yes yes yes!!! Yes to everything this video speaks to :) Navigating all the diets can leave people so confused!! I myself, once a plant-based eater, got caught up in all the hoopla of the most recent diet trend of ketogenic eating only to be left feeling absolutely awful 5 months later. I have since slowly returned to more or less how I used to eat and I feel a million times better!! Thank you for sharing such an important message :)


Deanna Matity   •   July 24, 2017

Awesome post Joy!

Rachel Molenda   •   July 25, 2017

Hey Deanna! Thanks for sharing :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Amber P.   •   July 24, 2017

This video makes me so happy. There are so many different ideas spinning in the various media (documentaries, magazines, online...) and it made me *feel* like I needed to choose "what I was," but at the same time confused my decision making for living the healthy lifestyle I want to live! I appreciate you putting your ideas out there and continuing to inspire others. Have a great day!

Rachel Molenda   •   July 25, 2017

Hey Amber! Totally! I understand why nutrition can be confusing for people but ultimately, we need to trust that we know our bodies best and what makes us thrive and that's whats most important :) Glad you enjoyed it! Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Ashley   •   July 28, 2017

YES! YES! YES! Love this so much. Totally agree with everything in this video.

Rachel Molenda   •   July 28, 2017

Woohooo! So glad you enjoyed it, Ashley! Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Debbie   •   July 28, 2017

I agree absolutely.. Too many labels gives that feeling of restriction, which is hard to follow long term without the pressure...It should be a lifestyle, something you can comfortably live with๐Ÿ˜„ that becomes a part of you without thinking about it

Rachel Molenda   •   July 28, 2017

Hey Debbie! Yes, exactly :) You've got it! Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Sheri   •   July 28, 2017

Joy I was eating very healthy for several years enjoying you receipes very much. About a year and a half ago I started going through so much stress and anxiety in pretty much every area of my life. As I tried to deal with reducing my stress in every way possible I developed Gerd. This has turned everything about my health upside down. I now can not eat most of the healthy foods I was eating prior to this. I am really struggling with what to eat on a daily basis. I was wondering if you would consider this topic. Sometimes even when you are doing everything right stress sometimes can not be reduced enough to avoid this horrible condition. When you take away things like garlic, onions tomatos, peppers, fruit and so on it makes it really difficult to cook healthy meals. Thank you for considering different topics.

Rachel Molenda   •   July 28, 2017

Hey Sheri, Thanks so much for sharing your story. I totally understand it can be frustrating to have to eliminate certain foods that we knew to be healthy and that are delicious too! Know that GERD isn't a life-long condition and you can definitely heal yourself from it. We will definitely consider this topic when mapping out our editorial calendar in the future, but in the meantime, it may be helpful to work with a nutritionist or your natural health care practitioner to ensure you are getting the most thorough and proper care you deserve :) Let us know if you need any help with finding a suitable practitioner for you! Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Lisa   •   July 28, 2017

Great article. Definitely people need to do what works best for them, there is no 'one size fits all diet'. Sometimes it can take time and be a bit frustrating, but once you've found a lifestyle that works for you, it's totally worth it.

Rachel Molenda   •   July 28, 2017

Hey Lisa, Exactly! Couldn't have said it better :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

deb   •   July 28, 2017



K.   •   July 28, 2017

Thanks so much. I agree 100%. ... any suggestions how to eat my own healthy diet when I'm at some else's house (like spending the weekend at the inlaws?) ... and their diet may be less green?

Rachel Molenda   •   July 28, 2017

Hey K! Maybe you could bring some of your own snacks or propose to offer a dish that follows your "K Diet"? :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

VERONIQUE C.   •   July 28, 2017

Loved this :). Question : How could I check to see if "everything" is in "check"? Ex : Zink, Iron, etc. Would I need blood work? And if so, what should my dr check? I'm not labelling myself, BUT just in order for you to get a better idea, I'm vegan'ish with an occasional egg here and there. I've stayed away from meat and dairy for about 8 months now. I like to see everything is still good (on the inside). Side note : I feel great :). Thanks!!!

VERONIQUE C.   •   July 28, 2017

Typos... ugh I'd* like to see if* everything...

Lissa D.   •   July 29, 2017

You nailed it Joy! People need to accept were all on our own individual life journey and need to figure out what diet helps ourselves thrive. Try them all and add/subtract what doesn't fit, and whats left that does fit is your own unique diet for yourself!


Susan Stukes   •   July 31, 2017

Really nice post.I really appreciate it..

Rachel Molenda   •   July 31, 2017

Hey Susan! So glad you enjoyed it :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Cheryl   •   August 1, 2017

Thanks for your interesting video Most of all, it's great not to be pressured when enjoying your foods at mealtime!

Rachel Molenda   •   August 1, 2017

Hey Cheryl, Totally! That's exactly the way we feel too :) Glad you enjoyed it! Rachel - Joyous Health Team

cheryl   •   October 14, 2017

Great summation and advice. Love how you touched on the aspect of respecting others choices.

Rachel Molenda   •   October 16, 2017

Hey Cheryl, Thanks so much for your kind words! We're happy to hear you enjoyed it :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Mary Duke   •   January 9, 2018

Thank you so much for the information. I have a question, I carry the genes for iron overload and I have my Ferritin checked each year with blood test to make sure it hasn't gone over 60. Is there foods I should stay away from? I know if you eat food with Vit. C a person assorted more iron. Can you help me with this one?

Rachel Molenda   •   January 10, 2018

Hey Mary, It's tricky to advise on this without knowing your full health history. This would likely be a better question for your natural health care practitioner :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Margaret   •   May 11, 2018

Fantastic that is exactly my diet too . I am a Holistic Nitritionist and feel the same way as you do . I also get criticized at times for eating meat but I need meat to thrive so I listen to my body and eat pretty much the same as you discribed . Good for you !!!

Rachel Molenda   •   May 11, 2018

That's awesome Margaret! I'm so happy you are listening to your body and honouring what you need :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team

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