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Why Health Eating Does Not Always Get You What You Want
First, for those of you who want to change your eating habits but are struggling to do so, let’s look at the things that are probably holding you back.
1. The “I’ll start Monday” routine
OK, we have all done this at one time or another. We are going to start our healthy eating routine on Monday, so we eat our little hearts out over the weekend. This is a bad mindset to get into. First, you are thinking that you will be saying goodbye to all the really “good” or “delicious” food and that’s not true. You don’t want to feel deprived, instead, you want to think of this as a swap, something bad (doughnuts) for something tasty and healthy (smoothies). Also, healthy eating is a habit, and habits take some time to change. Don’t go overboard and throw everything in your kitchen into the trash.
Start by changing one meal at a time. Perhaps you want to start with lunch. Begin by making healthy lunches and taking them to work. Do that for about 2 weeks, then you might want to change your snacks. Ditch the chips and cookies for nuts or yogurt. Small changes add up and before you know it, you will find you don’t want the crap you used to eat and you will crave an avocado and tomato salad.
2. Not Planning
Besides, after you do your binge eating over the weekend, you find on Monday that you still have lots of food in the house that you bought for your little farewell party. You don’t want to waste food or money so you will start Tuesday…then it’s Wednesday…you can see where this is going, right? That’s why the Monday thing won’t work.
Instead, start small and plan your lunches for the week on Friday night or Sunday. Go shopping for everything you need for the week to prepare those lunches. A lack of preparation will mean that, when you don’t have lunch for Monday afternoon, you will hit the drive through. Plan ahead and it will work out much better.
3. Don’t Sabotage Your Efforts
Bringing junk food into your house is a recipe for disaster. Those cookie boxes talk, friends, usually late at night when you want a snack. They say things like “One little cookie won’t hurt you,” or “No one ever died from one candy bar.” Rather than reason with the candy or cookies, just don’t have the conversation to begin with. Don’t bring stuff you shouldn’t eat into the house. Just don’t do it.
4. Party Strategy
This is always difficult, but not as bad as you might think. Almost every party has something healthy you can eat, even if it’s just vegetables and salad. If it’s a pot luck, or a friend you know well, bring your own food to share, like a homemade soup. Read more about healthy eating on holidays.
Eat something beforehand so you won’t be hungry and carry a zip lock baggie with some nuts in case you find yourself tempted to eat something you shouldn’t.
SEE ALSO: 10 Healthy Eating Myths
5. Eat What You Love
Don’t eat foods because they are healthy, eat things you LOVE that are also healthy for you. If you hate salads, don’t plan on eating one every day or you will simply go back to your old habits. Eat what you love so eating is a pleasure! It’s different for everyone, of course, but almost everyone loves yogurt, berries, nuts, seeds, cottage cheese, salmon, and oatmeal, for example. Whatever it is that you really love, (and that’s healthy, of course) eat it! Food should be enjoyed!
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