In the vein of New Year’s resolutions, many people will consider starting a new diet. There are many different options out there – Whole 30, Atkins, Keto, Paleo, Vegan – a large variety of popular diets which will all tout rapid weight loss. Perhaps there are celebrities endorsing these diets. These diets work, they certainly do. They are also generally restrictive, leaving many people feeling like they can’t wait for their ‘cheat day,’ which inevitably derails all the best intentions with dieting.
For anyone looking to improve their eating habits (aka ‘diet’), take a look at these simple ways to adopt sustainable practices, while enjoying delicious foods!! Yes, it is possible!
1. Drink water! The age-old standard, right? The reality is that most people live in a perpetual state of dehydration. Dehydration masks itself as hunger, triggering the urge to eat more food. Try drinking 6 oz of water when first waking up, and then 8-10 oz of water between meals. Keeping your body hydrated will stave off hunger, reduce food intake, and generally make you feel better.
2. Eat whole foods. Eating foods that resemble the way they occur in nature (versus packaged products) is going to immediately reduce the amount of salt, sugar, and preservatives in your diet. These 3 common additives are responsible for most of the retained water and fat in our bodies. Try starting out by swapping your snacks for a piece of fruit, mixed nuts, pumpkin seeds, or cut carrots/celery/cucumbers with tzatziki sauce or peanut butter. Swapping one snack per day is a great starting point, and after a couple days, look at how you can include a whole food at each meal!
3. Move your body - gently. Rigorous exercise is often another part of weight loss goals and New Year’s resolutions. This is a natural place to start, with the theory of burning more calories (output) than calories consumed (input). However, rigorous exercise can actually hurt your body versus help it. Aside from concerns about muscle strain or over-working your heart, strenuous exercise keeps your body in an elevated state of stress, when what we usually need in our busy lives is more rest. Instead, try taking quiet walks in nature, 15-30 minutes per day, or parking a little further away in the lot. Getting your body to move in other fun and lower impact activities such as dancing in your kitchen, hiking, swimming, kicking a ball around with your kids, taking the stairs when able, or a gentle yoga class are creative ways for you to stretch your muscles, add mobility, and give your body time to recover from daily demands.
It’s important to ease into change, starting with small steps to transform your habits over time. Incorporating 1 or 2 small changes per day slowly modifies your current eating and life habits. In this fashion, you are adding in new, healthy habits over time, which will begin to crowd out your current habits. Remember that you didn’t just suddenly start eating the way that you currently do; your patterns of eating occurred over months, years, decades. Training your body and brain to eat differently will also take time.
**DID YOU KNOW?** Working with a holistic health & nutrition coach is the secret sauce for making sustainable change! A coach will not only keep you on track for your weight loss and lifestyle goals, but also help you examine other components of your life, not just your diet, understanding how your habits weave through your entire life. Get started with the right support for YOUR weight loss and lifestyle success and look at Hummingbird & Dragonfly Restorative Wellness; www.hdrestorativewellness.com
All steps in the direction to a happier, healthier self are the RIGHT STEPS! Tune in here again for more healthy eating tips, which will be shared in the coming weeks. Wishing you a happy, healthy and empowered start to this new year ahead! #healthyliving #healthyeating #norestrictivedieting #transformyourlife #healthcoach #coachforsuccess #resolutions