· Are you feeding your body or are you feeding your emotions?
· Do you feel sluggish throughout the day because you’ve eaten too much?
· Have you ever felt misled and confused by all the conflicting diet advice?
If so, don’t be so hard on yourself, you’re not alone; millions of people are regularly searching for these answers too. Eating for optimum health and wellness needn’t be overly complicated. If you follow these basic principles, you can learn how to develop a healthy eating plan for everyday.
No one decides what you eat except you. You have countless opportunities to head down one path or another on your journey to living a more bountiful and healthy lifestyle. Nothing outside you stops you, you stop you; it’s time to take ownership of your choices.
If you have struggled and failed to eat healthier, ask yourself where you went wrong. If you’re serious about getting healthy it’s time you be completely honest with yourself about what you’re putting in your mouth. Accept responsibility and take the steps needed to solve your problems. No more explanations, no more excuses.
Recognize that your relationship with food often changes; if you’re unhappy or stressed you may try to fix your feelings with food. Before you eat, it’s important to stop and think; clarify if it’s your stomach that’s hungry or if it’s your mind that needs attention.
If hunger isn’t the problem, food will not be the answer. Accept that your journey will require discipline and willpower, choose between what you want now and what you want the most. If you’re eating for any reason besides physical hunger, you need to reconsider it.
Portion control is the key to keeping calories in check and is the foundation for successful weight loss and weight management. For most people portion size is anything but obvious. When most people sit down to eat they tend to underestimate how much they are actually serving themselves.
Stay flexible and adjust your portions based on your hunger, fullness and level of activity. Take into account what you have just done or how active you’re going to be in the next few hours. Above all, be honest with yourself; don’t use your answer as a convenient excuse to overeat.
An empty stomach is approximately the size of your fist and can expand up to 10 times its original size. Once expanded, over time, it’s less likely to shrink back to its original size. That’s why smaller meals and smaller portions are a sensible route to take.
As well, consider the size of the plates and bowls to help limit your food intake. Most people tend to eat with their eyes and if given a large plate will be tempted to fill it and compelled to eat it. You want to be able to put your fork down when you’re 80% full, not when your stuffed or the plate is empty.
It takes roughly 20 minutes for your satiety mechanisms to kick in. Give your brain time to register that you are content and can stop eating. Start paying attention to your appetite and fullness cues; cultivate an intuitive eating style.
If you want to eat healthy you need to eat real food. Real food doesn’t have ingredients; real food is ingredients. If it ever needed sun, dirt, or water its real food. The food giants and franchises have done a really great job of convincing the American public that they can cook better than we can for ourselves. You cannot eat off of the dollar menu and look like a million bucks.
Don’t fall for deceptive advertising; be skeptical of media hype. Big Food and it’s marketing machine is not your friend. Many foods are opportunistically named “Fit”, “Free”, “Healthy”, “Lean”, “Lite”, and “Low”. Whenever you see these words think of these: “CHEMICAL SHIT STORM”.
If they have taken something out you better believe they have put something in to satisfy taste, mouth feel, and shelf life. These additives provide flavor and texture but cheat our senses into believing we are getting better food than we actually are. Even food that is labeled “organic” is not always a healthy choice if it is highly processed; think twice before purchasing “organic junk food”.
Rid your home, office, car or wherever it is that you keep an unhealthy stash of food. Some people would argue that you need to develop willpower and I agree that you do. But while you’re in the process of learning and developing a sound nutritional lifestyle you do not need to be faced with additional temptations. Why would you want to make the transition any more difficult?
It’s time to ditch processed food in a dramatic blaze of glory. Don’t try to convince yourself that you can keep bad food within reach and change your habits; breaking bad habits isn’t always that easy. You will be more likely to stick with great food choices if you don’t have your old staples to fall back on. Don’t expect to see changes unless you start making them.
Set your sights on forming and instituting a sound dietary routine; be a product of your decisions, not of your circumstances. By introducing basic daily dietary strategies you put yourself on a path to regain and maintain your health.
Eating small, frequent meals will fuel your body for optimum health; blood sugar and insulin levels will be controlled and thus your energy level. Be mindful of your portion size and the plates you are serving yourself on, it will go a long way on your journey to health.
Every living cell in your body is made from what you eat and drink. If you consistently eat and drink junk food, you will have a junk body. Food is not just calories, it is information; it talks to your DNA and tells it what to do. Food can be your medicine or your poison, choose wisely.
I am a corporate wellness consultant. As a master yoga instructor, I support in-house wellness programs, seminars, trade shows and executive retreats. I help business leaders build and maintain physical and mental well-being. If you would like to learn more about offering a health and fitness program to your busy management team contact me at [email protected] or 386.871.0582
If you're searching for clear solutions and manageable strategies that will lead you to a more energetic and fulfilling lifestyle, look no further.
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