Leading a healthy lifestyle can seem overwhelming but it doesn’t have to be. Below I will share a few tips to help you on your journey.
5 Tips to Help Trigger Healthy Food Choices:
Drink a glass of water first before eating.
Many of us are walking around dehydrated. A health and fitness tip is to drink a full glass of water when you have hunger cravings; if the cravings are still there after you drink the water, then you should eat a healthy meal or snack. A large percentage of the time, they will disappear because you were actually thirsty rather than hungry! Give it a try and see what happens.
Go to bed an hour earlier.
Sleep can affect your appetite. Many studies have shown that the less sleep you get can actually cause a decrease in appetite-suppressing hormones, making you feel hungry and causing you to eat more (and when you’re tired, doesn’t all the sugar, salt, and fat look good?). Work your way to going to bed an hour earlier to start getting an extra hour’s rest each night! And then have a wonderful breakfast!
Before a food decision, think about how you will feel after eating it.
This is a simple form of aversion therapy. Start paying attention to how you feel after you eat certain foods. Will the food choice make you want to lie down and nap? Or will it give you energy and pep so you can run up a flight of stairs if you wanted top? When I switched to the Paleo diet and was having a pizza craving, I just had to remind myself that I didn’t have two hours that afternoon to feel lethargic and sleep. Once I brought that feeling to mind, I chose the healthy option of fish and veggies.
Overhaul your kitchen and pantry.
You are what you eat. So, make things easier on yourself by ensuring you don’t have any junk food in your house! The goal is to remove any and all temptations and set yourself up for success. Clean out your refrigerator, freezer, and pantry. Work with a health coach if this is an overwhelming or difficult task. It really helps to have someone knowledgeable about health who can teach you how to read labels, how to shop, healthy snacks, etc.
Overhaul your work environment.
Similar to number four above, overhaul your work environment, too! Think of how many hours a day you are at the office or traveling. Again, the goal is to remove any and all temptations and set yourself up for success. While many offices provide a cafeteria, many of the options are not great beyond the salad bar but you cannot eat salad forever. While it’s best to meal prep at home and bring meals with you to the office, it is not always doable, so take the time to scope out healthy takeout options around your workplace.
You can also stock your office or cubicle with food that you can eat and that fits with your protocol (protein bars, almond butter, healthy trail mix). You can also have prepared meals delivered to your office (assuming you have easy access to a fridge and freezer at your workplace).
And there you have it; five easy ways to trigger healthy choices to get you on the right path to leading a healthy lifestyle!
If the thought all the above is overwhelming, just take it one tip at a time or treat yourself to a Healthy Lifestyle Advisor to create an action plan customized to your needs and guide you through the transition.
You’re worth it!