5 tips to help keep your food on track.
Beware the subtle slide of daily bread and buttocks where once there was precision decision-making and hyper awareness around your food intake and energy output. Be brutally honest with yourself about your eating behaviours to see where the gaps have emerged: – larger portions? – extra snacks? – mindless eating? – less homemade meals? – the diet/blowout cycle?
All of the above can, over time, lead to poor blood sugar regulation which causes energy highs & lows, mood swings, weight gain & zero results. That’s the short term payoff. Keep at it & you could be knocking on the doors of Diabetes 2 & 3. Let’s not tempt that fate. A temporary food diary can be a powerful tool to create accountability. MyFitnessPal have a useful app to assist. (https://www.myfitnesspal.com) Simply cutting calories & moving more is an outdated, inaccurate means of changing your shape & energy levels, one that does not take into account just how sophisticated & intelligent our bodies are at adjusting to how we behave.
Get smart about your macros, adjust them according to your daily lifestyle & sally forth again.
The fastest way of falling off the food truck is to eat the same things all the time. Chowing down on a tuna salad every day for lunch can swiftly lead to boredom, not really tasting what you are eating and, before you know it, you’re on the slippery slope to a takeout food coma. Mix it up and be flexible with meal labels & conditioning, ie breakfast doesn’t have to mean toast, cereal or porridge. Try egg muffins, a chia seed pudding or whip up an energy sustaining green smoothie. Think outside the cereal box.
TUNE IN TO YOURSELF
The hardest times of the day for most people regarding food intake are mid-afternoon &/or the evening. Those impeccable intentions you began the day with have scarpered and all of a sudden you are shoe-horning industrial portions of chocolate/wine/weird-food-combinations-you’d-never-admit-to down your gullet. This could be due to not having eaten enough earlier in the day so your hormones are frog-marching your appetite into overdrive or, you could simply be bored or emotionally fried. Cue food, coffee or alcohol to (momentarily) relieve the symptoms (unaddressed emotions). Take the time to recognise emotional eating and drinking for what they are – bandaids, & replace them with new, non-food related activities.
Monday morning comes around & the world goes on a new diet/exercise regime. All too often those great intentions slide sideways along with our hips by Tuesday afternoon because we try to change too much too soon. “That’s it! I’m giving up sugar, caffeine, alcohol, carbs, dairy, gluten, small animals……!” Try making one or two small tweaks such as drinking more water & planning how you want your food landscape to look, then rinse & repeat. By simply hydrating well & eating home-cooked whole foods you will start to feel better & the knock-on effect will be better decisions in all aspects of your life. Be in it for the sustainable long haul.
There is no one way of eating and there are as many “healthy” diets as there are people. Educate yourself, use yourself as an n=1 experiment & record how you feel. Just because the latest diet is getting a lot of airtime & maybe your friends are doing it doesn’t mean it will work for you. There are NO SILVER BULLETS. Don’t underestimate what you know – avoid processed “food”, eat whole food, drink lots of water and move every day. It ain’t always easy but it’s bloomin’ simple.
Kickstart the conversation – how have you fared so far this year?
As always, Like, Share, Tweet, holler and rant……