We are attempting to change to a healthier lifestyle, not just lose weight.
Healthy Eating Habits, not Perfect Eating Habits
In order to achieve the goal of a healthier lifestyle, we must change our eating habits. One thing that is important is “healthy eating habits; not “perfect eating habits”. Trying to hold yourself to some very strict, narrow diet is not realistic. We want instead to try to create some habit changes and list kinds of foods to stay away from on a regular basis.
Most people have heard of insulin. Insulin works to transfer glucose (sugar) into cells to store the energy from the sugar as fat. Insulin is released by your body when you ingest foods that contain sugar. In the days when famines were a regular occurrence, these stores of fat were used for survival.
Very simply put the more sugars or simple starches you eat, the more insulin you produce. This turns on the switch that causes your body to store fat. So the less sugar and simple starch you eat, the easier it is to get to a healthy weight. The first thing to cut out of your regular diet is sugary drinks. Please remember that the idea of this program is to build a healthier lifestyle, so do not substitute diet drinks for sugary ones. Artificial sweeteners can be more unhealthy than sugar. Water is the best thing for you to drink on a regular basis. Potatoes, white bread, and other simple starches are also converted into simple sugar. Limiting these foods will also help your weight loss efforts tremendously.
Try not to eat after 7pm. If you eat during the hours that you are still active, your body will burn the food you consume as fuel. If you take in calories and then are not active, your body will store this energy as fat.
Quality proteins like eggs, nuts, meats are very good for you. Complex carbohydrates like oats and whole grains are also good for you. You always want to start your day with at least 20 grams of protein at breakfast. Some people like to have a protein rich shake in the morning and these are excellent. This starts your metabolism up for the day. Eat as many vegetables as you want.
If you do have a day where you eat things you know you shouldn’t, getting back on track is very simple. Just add ten (or twenty) minutes to your usual exercise routine the next time you exercise. Being healthy is not about being perfect, it is about moderation and balance. By the same token if you know you can’t get your regular exercise in, decrease how much you eat to balance the scales. This way you never feel like one bad day has “ blown your whole diet”.