Have you ever:
· followed a diet, lost weight and put it all back on again?
· purchased pills or potions to help you get into shape?
· disliked foods, so abandoned a meal plan after day three, or
· cut food groups out or felt like you were living on air?
You are not alone. Every day, there are thousands of people making the decision to change their eating habits and ultimately improve their health. This change requires planning and many are confused where to begin. Sound like you?
Don’t be disheartened, we live in a world with information at our fingertips, celebrities and models endorsing weight loss products and programs, fad diets promising quick results and buzzwords like ketogenic, macros, superfoods and counting calories. It is no wonder you are confused. So, how can you stay focused and lead a happier healthy you?
Firstly, respect what nature delivers and appreciate the food you eat. Understanding that the food you ingest provides your body with energy for cellular information to function optimally and assist with vitality and healthy aging. Healthy nutrient balance is crucial for maintaining health. For instance, if we eat too much we may put on unnecessary weight and slow our metabolism, or do not eat enough which may affect you psychologically, or if we consume the incorrect types of foods, we are not sufficiently offering our body beneficial fuel and misguiding cells into metabolic dysfunction.
My tip is to keep it simple, step back from the ‘hype’ set your own benchmarks, gain support from friends and family, make small changes regularly and offer yourself kindness. Begin with the basics, so as not to confuse yourself of what is right or wrong. The message is to be inspired to change your eating habits and I hope the following very quick and easy suggestions offer a starting point.
Begin a Happier, Healthier You without the FAD diet.
TIP: Eat a wide selection of fruit and vegetables daily – ideal intake is a serving of 1 to 2 cups to consume a total of 6 serves. This provides a broad range of vitamins and minerals and much needed FIBRE, crucial for digestion, bowel health, heart health and detoxification.
Plant foods help maintain blood pressure, protect against infections, assist to prevent free radical damage and help reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity and diabetes.
Try these suggestions out & be a Happier, Healthier You
· Boiled, poached or scrambled eggs (x 2) with (1-2 cups of veggies) such as mushrooms, baby spinach, kale, rocket, silverbeet drizzle with flaxseed oil or olive oil, sprinkle with some walnuts and pumpkin seeds and little salt and pepper.
· Wholegrain (spelt, rye, sourdough) toast with avocado, tomato, baby spinach and a squeeze of lemon – optional labnah (yoghurt balls) or goat’s feta.
· Smoothies made with almond or coconut milk and fresh fruit (banana, berries or mangoes, optional: supergreen powder for extra veg intake), add 1 tbsp plain yoghurt and 1 tsp pea protein, chia seeds and raw honey to taste.
· Vegetable sticks with protein dip (hummus, avocado dip, beetroot dip).
· Plain yoghurt with fresh berries, nuts & flaxseed and/or chia seeds.
· Mini home made almond meal & almond milk or coconut milk muffins sweetened with honey and fresh fruit. (savoury muffins including grated carrot, beetroot, zucchini).
· Tahini treats with honey, nuts & seeds and add raw cacao nibs. Combine 1/2 jar tahini paste with 1/2 jar honey and mix in your nuts/seeds/dried fruit/cacao nibs, form into small 10cent size balls and place in moderate oven for 10 minutes or until golden and let cool before eating.
· (2 cups) Stir fry vegetables, leafy mixed salad or assorted raw/steamed vegetables.
· Soups with protein e.g. chicken, beef, fish, lamb, lentils, chickpeas & vegetables.
· Lean protein (30-50g) with 1 cup mixed leafy green salad or 1 cup steamed veg (or combine both) drizzle with olive oil and season salad with salt, pepper, basil, parsley, coriander.
· Vegetables with pine nut pesto and wholegrain or buckwheat pasta.
Reduce sugar and saturated fat intake!
Processed and refined foods are normally laden with sugar, saturated fat and unwanted preservatives and additives. Sugars are sneaky and found in products under different names (dextrose, corn syrup, fructose, fruit juice concentrate, rice syrup, sucrose, caramel).
TIP: Go Brown!
· Swap refined white grains found in breads, pasta and rice with fibre-rich wholegrain alternatives.
– Drink plenty of filtered water daily, up to 2 litres if you can
Eating healthy, watching portion size and participating in physical activity will offer positive improvements towards a better quality of life.
When you feel healthy, you look healthy and this feeling reflects more beauty than what a fad diet can ever offer.