STOP THINKING OF WHAT YOU PUT INTO YOUR BODY AS FOOD, AND START THINKING OF IT AS FUEL.
This may sound like a redundant concept, but trust us when we say most people haven’t heard it enough. Too often, people react to their body’s sensation of hunger by searching for comfort instead of giving it what it really needs. Let’s be honest here, a hamburger and french fries sound way better than a salad and some veggies.
We know that it is easier and makes your body happier to settle for the comfort food that we all love. And we get it, BUT, the thing you should be asking yourself is if that food is benefiting or blessing your body.
HOW DOES THE FOOD YOU EAT MAKE YOU FEEL?
Does whatever you want in those moments make you feel good about what you’re putting into your body and will it make you feel good afterward? Will it fuel you for the rest of the day or will your tank be on E? If you want to take a nap after you eat, chances are, you are not filling your body with the food it deserves.
For those of you who are on a regimen of eating healthy food, we salute you. It takes discipline, commitment and lots of self-love to consistently eat foods that are good for you. Maybe you are pretty good at eating healthy but sometimes can give in to your cravings. We say, “Good Job.” Balance is an important part of life and even the most disciplined eaters will crave unhealthy foods from time to time. If you’re at the beginning of your healthy eating journey, we’re proud of you. You’re looking for the first step to take, and since we are all about inspiring wellness and live by our “healthy inside and out” philosophy, we’re going to share with you some steps to make it easier for you. Here are 5 tips to thinking differently about the food that you put into your body!
THE 5 TIPS TO HEALTHIER EATING
In this article, we aren’t going to waste time talking about what foods are or are not healthy for you. You know that veggies are good; chips are not; water is good, pop is not. We won’t get into it any further, but if you do have any questions about what foods are best for you, or if you want to know if there are particular ways to maximize what you’re eating to give you the healthiest outcome overall, stop into our Birmingham, MI location. We’d love to help you and answer any questions you may have. So, without further ado:
1. START SLOW
The biggest challenge to eating healthy occurs when you immediately remove all unhealthy foods from your diet. If you do this, you will set yourself up for failure. Your body needs time to adjust to the changes you make, so start by intentionally cutting out one food or food group at a time. Do this for a designated period of time such as 2-3 weeks and then continue to take out another and another.
Tip: when you are feeling like you’re starting to crave something unhealthy, look at the clock and wait for five minutes. If after five minutes, you’re still craving the snack or treat, then eat it. Simply delaying the response to your body’s craving will often show you that you didn’t really need it in the first place and you’ll pass it up.
2. MAKE CONSCIOUS DECISIONS
Going out to eat is NOT an excuse to not eat something unhealthy. No matter where you are, you are in control of what you put into your body. You’ll find that it’s easier to grocery shop for healthy foods than it is to pick something healthy from a menu. This is because you will feel more motivated to select healthy choices when preparing for the next week or two. Stay conscious of what you are eating; again, think of it as fuel.
Forewarning: you will have unhealthy cravings when you get home from the grocery store, but try to satisfy these cravings with something healthy, rather than going out and buying snacks. Eventually, once your body adjusts to the healthy choices, it will begin to crave those instead.
Additional note: When you are grocery shopping, stick to the outer ring of the store. This is where most healthy foods are kept and it will help you avoid looking at foods that don’t serve your body.
3. IDENTIFY YOUR TRIGGERS
Another one of the 5 tips to thinking differently about the food that you put into your body, is to identify your specific triggers. Everyone has things in their lives that makes them crave something. Maybe you come home from work and habitually have a drink to unwind. Maybe you get stressed at work and binge on chocolate or chips. It’s important to understand what triggers you to have those unhealthy cravings. Once you understand why you want those chips or that soda, you’ll be able to make healthier choices.
4. EAT SMALLER PORTIONS AND ONLY WHEN YOU’RE ACTUALLY HUNGRY
This is the most common one and probably something you’ve heard over and over again, but the message still rings true. Eating smaller portions more frequently will keep your metabolism active and help your body burn calories throughout the day.
Beyond that though, it’s important to note that you should only eat food when you’re actually hungry. We’re so accustomed to eating because its a certain time of day or because we’re with a friend or in a group out to dinner so we think we have to eat something. These, my friend, are LIES!
If you aren’t hungry, don’t eat! If you are really worried about sticking to a schedule or what your friends may think, order something small and only eat what you’re hungry for. Carryout boxes were invented for a reason. Take your leftovers home and eat it the next day.
5. GIVE YOURSELF GRACE
Recognize that it’s okay to give in to your cravings every once in a while. The important thing is to not use that as an excuse to tumble back down a hill you’ve worked so hard to climb up. Are fruits and veggies always going to be better for you than other snacks? Yes. Should you keep your meat consumption to a minimum? Yes. but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have some ice cream or a nice steak every once in a while. Balance is key to living a good life, and we support a good life.
Eating healthy isn’t a one-size-fits-all process. Everyone is different so what works for your best friend or your husband may not work well for you. It’s important for you to identify what your body needs most and how to achieve what healthy eating looks like for you. By following these 5 tips to thinking differently about the food that you put into your body, you will be sure to make the right choices.
For those looking for a place to get delicious, healthy food, Be Well Lifestyle Centers has an incredible vegan cafe with ample choices to choose from. With options from energizing smoothies to acai bowls and fresh meals to go, you’ll be sure to find something you enjoy! Order online or stop into our Birmingham, MI location today to get some great food and ask us about all of the other services we offer!