In our last blog What are your health goals for 2017, we talked about changing the approach to our New Year’s dietary resolutions. What is important here to have is the right mindset to achieve ‘health goals’, rather than ‘diet goals’. Focusing on being healthy rather than on dieting is about making a life-long commitment to the healthy lifestyle. Here are some of my trade secrets and little steps you can introduce daily. Pinkie Promise- they will make the difference!
Start Small for Success
With the New Year’s arrival, we often set goals for the year ahead. Sometimes we get a little carried away. Because we want the results immediately, we often throw ourselves into our new regime at full-speed, rather than taking it bit by bit. If this works for you then keep doing it! If not…as for some people, advice follows.
Approach action incrementally to help maintain enthusiasm. Start small. Remember that every step, however small is cumulative towards your ultimate goal. For a successful start to your new regime start with one little thing at a time.
For example, if you have sugar in your tea or coffee and want to give up sugar in 2017, start by reducing the amount of sugar you put in each mug of tea or coffee by just ¼ of a teaspoon. Once you have got used to the way your drink tastes with the applied reduction- repeat the process again. The length of time it takes to get used to the new taste can vary from person to person so whether that is days or weeks, make sure you follow each stage! You should not progress until you are happy with stage one.
This approach sets you up for success. It encourages your mind to realise you can achieve goals and stick to them and makes the change less of a jump, meaning you are now more easily motivated to carry on. And by taking a small step you have already achieved health improvements and your first goal, proving you can succeed!
Start small for success!
Ditch the Cereal
For weight loss and long-term health – ditch the cereal. Make sure you still have breakfast. Research shows that eating at breakfast time kick starts your metabolism for the day and helps you make right food choices in due course.
The idea here is to ditch commercial cereals! Even the ones that are advertised as being good for you are often hiding some nasty secrets. The main culprit is sugar – check the labels. Even the ones that are free of sugar are not necessarily great. More recent research shows that too much dependence on grains, no matter how good they are, can contribute to weight gain.
If you are aiming to lose weight in 2017 start the day with a bowl of fruit or if you prefer a hearty breakfast – go back to the old fashioned way of eating eggs. If you have little time in the morning, you can always boil an egg the night before. You’ll have the perfect portable breakfast complete with its own packaging and ready to go!
Drink Water before You Eat
I’m sure you all know how important is the amount of water we consume every day. Water helps keep the body well hydrated, which is essential because almost every cell in the body needs water to function properly. My tip here is having a glass of water about 20 minutes before you eat. This will benefit you in two ways:
1.Ensures that you are hydrated. If you are dehydrated, you are likely to eat more. This is because your body will crave food in the hope that you will eat something with a high water content to rehydrate.
2. The water takes up space in your stomach so that you will feel full faster. This is a great help for people who tend to overeat as you will stop eating sooner.
Whilst we are talking about drinking – avoid drinking during your meal and immediately after. Drinking at these times dilutes your digestive juices and can create problems with the overall digestive process. Try waiting at least an hour after your meal before you have a drink.
Get Support for Success
Weight loss or healthy eating is much more likely to succeed when you surround yourself with like-minded people. If your nearest and dearest are going to support you on your journey, this is an excellent start.
On the flip side beware of being around people who sabotage your success or are negative about your goals. This will not help you!
To assist you, when you go to your friend’s house for a cup of tea and a chat and she brings out a cake, you need a strategy to deal with that situation. He or she probably knows of your big commitment for this year but still says something like “oh go on, you’ve been really good this week, one slice of cake won’t hurt”. If you decide to have the piece of cake just remember it is fine and you can jump right back onto your goal. Losing weight takes time and commitment, so if you wish to say no to the cake this will only speed up your results.
For more strategies to lose weight, eat healthier and deal with awkward situations why not join us at Beehive Healthcare for group weight loss focused sessions or individual nutritional advice.
You can do it!
Contact Sandra on 0775 801 2894 or Sandra@theessenceofhealth.co.uk for more information.