We all start off the day with the best of intentions. We’re going to find time to exercise, and fit three healthy meals into our schedules. But then life happens, and we’re tempted to grab dinner from the nearest drive-through on the way home.
When someone mentions eating seasonally, you might instantly think of pumpkin spice lattes or Halloween candy. After all, autumn has arrived! But autumn brings more than sugary treats and cool-weather comfort foods. If you pay attention to your local farmer’s market, you can find plenty of seasonal treats that are both delicious and healthy.
It’s a lot easier to reach your fitness and weight loss goals when you make a plan for success (and stick to it). In particular, creating an eating plan for the week can help you to avoid temptation to “cheat” on your diet, and meet nutritional goals at the same time. But a lot of people feel overwhelmed when they sit down to make a plan for the week. This quick guide can help you streamline the meal planning process.
Venture into the weight loss section of any bookstore, and you’ll discover an abundance of books promoting one eating plan or another. Turn on the TV and you’ll see advertisements for various programs, promising to help you shed unwanted pounds. Weight loss plans vary significantly in the types of foods they promote, or the amount of exercise they claim is necessary. Some are even designed to address specific body types. But one thing remains constant, in every weight loss plan that has ever provided even a small measure of success: Water is important.
We often make the mistake of viewing our weight loss plan in terms of “things we can’t eat”. That’s actually a bad habit for several reasons: Making foods “off limits” can trigger more cravings for them, it teaches you to view healthy foods as a punishment, and it trains your brain to resent your weight loss plan.
Your weight loss plan will set off a chain reaction of positive changes in your life, from improved health to the need for a new wardrobe. It should also prompt you to revamp your kitchen. However, instead of new curtains or hand towels, you should be thinking about changes that support your new, healthier lifestyle.
You know sugar is one of the worst things you can eat, and that you should avoid it if you want to lose weight. But surely just one more bite can’t hurt… Can it?
Technically, a small amount of sugar here and there is acceptable, and certainly not the end of the world. But the problem with the “just one more bite” mindset is that it can be eerily similar to having “just one more drink” or “rolling the dice just one more time”. Like drinking alcohol, gambling, and many other activities, eating sugar can actually be addictive.
Some people eat a little bit of sugar here and there, and they’re completely healthy. Others can’t seem to shake their sugar addiction. Even worse, like many other types of addicts, those who can’t say no to sugar might actually be in denial about how much they’re really eating. If any of these eight signs point to you – especially if several of them do – you might have developed a physical or emotional dependence on sugar.
- You crave sweets regularly.
- You battle skin conditions like acne.
- You feel moody, cranky, or depressed (especially when you’re craving something sweet).
- You experience memory or “processing” problems (especially after a meal).
- You’ve put on some weight, and it’s hard to lose it.
- You frequently feel tired, despite getting enough sleep.
- Foods taste bitter, even things that most other people seem to enjoy, and you don’t like many foods that don’t contain sugar.
- You’ve had several (or more) cavities in your teeth.
Does any of this sound familiar? That’s because sugar acts very similar to a drug. You crave it, you consume it, and then not long afterward your mood and energy crashes. You crave more of it, just to feel “normal” again, and then the cycle starts over. Some people even crave increasing amounts of sugar, to the point that all other foods taste bitter or bland.
If you have a sugar addiction, one of the best things you can do for yourself is either cut back gradually or go cold turkey on the stuff. Give yourself a few weeks on a healthy, balanced, and sugar-free diet, and you will start to feel like yourself again. You’ll even notice that healthy foods begin to taste better over time.
If you need help with your weight loss program, or you seek nutritional advice, give us a call. We can help you put together an eating plan that best suits your goals and lifestyle.