Top 7 tips

  1. Before you eat anything, think to yourself “How will I feel AFTER I eat this?” Think about how you will feel once you have eaten candy versus a piece of fruit. Thinking ahead will help you make better choices NOW. Recall that your mood is very much related to what you eat. If you suffer from depression or anxiety, for example, you definitely want to rethink sugar and caffeine. 
  1. Make a list of healthy snacks that you can eat when you feel like you need a boost. Make sure they are readily available. To do this, make a grocery list of the healthy foods that you like (snacks and mealtime foods) and give them to the person in your house in charge of going to the grocery store. Better yet… go to the grocery store with that person that way you can help your family make better food choices that are within your family’s budget.

Paula’s list of healthful snack choices include:

almonds and cashews with a sliced pear

bananas with almond butter

oranges and pistachios

almond butter on whole grain crackers

carrots with hummus

dark chocolate (let’s be honest about this)

The trick: Eat fruit with nuts so the protein in the nuts helps break down the natural fruit sugar.

Go easy on the chocolate. (But definitely eat a little bit of chocolate when you really need it. Why deprive?)

  1. When you know you are going to be out and about, pack a healthful snack to take with you, so you don’t have to rely on a vending machine.
  1. Follow the guidelines for water and fiber consumption!!!
  1. Eat slowly!! Try to sit down and enjoy your meal rather than shoveling it down. Chewing slowly helps you to digest your food and to savor the flavors. Your body generally doesn’t register  being “full” until about 20-30 minutes after you’ve started eating, so you are LESS likely to overeat if you slow down and notice when your body feels full.
  1. Ever heard the expression “Go green?” Most people use it in reference to the environment but you would be wise to apply it to your diet as well. Greens— in particular leafy greens— are excellent for you. They provide all sorts of nutrients while helping to keep your system clean. They are also included in every diet known that promotes health and/or prevents disease. So eat up those greens! Don’t care for them? First, try lots of different lettuces—they do NOT all taste the same—so do not let your dislike of one turn you off of all. And then second, try including small amounts to begin. One leaf on a sandwich, a little shredded lettuce on your (veggie) burger, a leaf or two of spinach in your pasta sauce. The point is, you don’t have to sit down and eat a full salad to work those greens in—baby steps will get you there!
  1. One final note (not really a tip, more like a gentle command): forgive yourself when you make mistakes.  Enjoy your life.  Not everyday needs to be “candy free” or without a great tasting cheeseburger with fries! Create a balance. Exercise and eat right but don’t forget to enjoy your food along the way!

Post Question:

What tip would you add to that list?

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