Last week, I did a post about the child obesity epidemic in the United States. In that post, the first point I wanted to make is that food is fuel. When you realize that very fact, it becomes easier to make better choices. It’s all about how you view yourself.
If you could buy yourself a brand new car and money was not an option, what kind of car would it be? Visualize that car. Imagine yourself in the driver’s seat. Take in that “new car” smell – actually don’t do that because it’s not really good for you.
Now, I want you to imagine how you would treat that car. You’d be careful about locking it at night. You might become one of “those” people taking up two spots so that nobody could park right next to you. You would be proud of that car and all it took to obtain it and you would make sure that you used the best gasoline, the best oil and then took really good care of it. Not a car person?
How about a house then? You have a brand new, gorgeous home. Whatever you like: cool apartment loft, sprawling ranch, mega mansion. I imagine you’d want the finest furnishings and would be careful about people taking off shoes and eating or drinking outside the kitchen.
The point is that we’re so much more willing to take good care of things than we are of ourselves. And that’s where we falter. Now, I’m not saying that food should not be enjoyed. It absolutely should. But it always has to come back to the one basic fact: food is fuel.
So. How do you eat for health and not overdo it? How do you shed the weight, or keep it off? Here are 7 easy tips to help you stay on course.
1. Know the difference between Real Food as opposed to Fake Food. Stay away from boxed, pre-packed foods that are high in sodium, fat and chemical preservatives. Read the labels. You are a beautiful, thriving human being and not a lab experiment. Act like it!
2. Understand what portions look like. I use a handy device from Calorie King that does the thinking for me. Use smaller plates if you have to!! When I go to a restaurant (which is not often) I always ask for the container to be brought with the meal. That way, I immediately set aside half to be eaten the next day. I get 2 meals for the price of one because restaurant portions are HUGE.
3. Never. Skip. Breakfast. As Taylor Swift would say, “like, ever.” It’s called breakfast because you are actually “breaking” the “fast” that you’ve been on all night long while you slept. They don’t say it’s the most important meal of the day for nothing.
4. Eat 3 medium size meals and have 2 snacks each day. Depending on your size and your body’s needs, you’ll want to consume 300 to 400 calories per meal and 100 to 150 calories per snack. Again, this could decrease or increase based on your age, size and gender.
5. PLAN out your meals. Sit down and plan out what you’re going to eat at what time each day. Every Saturday, I take 20 minutes and make up a plan for the following week and stick to it as best I can. If I have a guideline to follow, it’s pretty much a no-brainer for me. I consume the calories I need (calories = energy) and I’m not mindlessly grazing all day long.
6. Drink water all day long. I drink a cup of boiling water with ginger and cinnamon each morning instead of coffee. It jump starts my metabolism and starts my water cycle. I also drink a glass of water before EVERY meal and I drink a Fiber Drink an hour after dinner.
7. Move. Every single day you need to move. Walk, dance, bike…just put your body in motion. Just 30-45 minutes each day is all it takes to maintain health. If you’re looking to lose weight, you can increase that to an hour or 90 minutes per day.
There are many benefits to making a conscious decision to eat well. Here are some of them:
- You are optimizing your metabolism and, in effect, becoming a fat burning machine
- Your body is able to actually absorb the nutrients and put them to use
- You will have a better sugar/insulin response and energy to do what you need to do
- Your hair will be shinier, your eyes brighter and your skin healthier
- You will sleep so much better
- Your sex life will likely improve (oh no she didn’t! oh yes, she did!)
- You will be happier in general and much more pleasant to be around (see previous 2 points)
So, come on. You GOT this. Remember, you are a temple of GREATNESS. Step into that greatness and start treating yourself with the love, honor and respect you deserve. Until next time…
Penny at Green Moms and Kids