People often seem to think that eating clean or being on a diet involves these two things, either you eat no ‘bad’ things at all or you are failing, and this simply isn’t true. To be on a diet or to eat well and better doesn’t always mean to stop eating ‘bad’ foods totally as this would never work in the long run. Realistically cutting out all the foods you enjoy or treat yourself with completely would just make you want them more thus caving in over time. It’s important to teach yourself to cut down so you can still occasionally treat yourself without feeling guilty or ruining your diet.
Establishing your favourites
Firstly, it’s important to find out which ‘bad’ foods you like the most (for example cake or crisps) and list them all down either on paper or on a notes section of your phone so that you have a physical copy you can refer to. After this is done start to think of ways you can cut them down, selecting a cheat day is probably the best way to go about it.
My personal cheat day is Sunday and this is only because I see this as the last day of the week, a chance to reward yourself for the long hard working week you just had and a way of motivating yourself for the following week about to come. This day isn’t meant for you to eat any quantity of anything you like by any means, but a small sample of something from the list you made prior is certainly a great way to get in those ‘bad’ foods but still be on track for the progress you wish to make. Don’t let the cheat meal or snack turn into 2 or 3 days however!
This is the actual physical side of the whole process, cutting down on your ‘bad’ food intake. Saving the foods on your list until your cheat day is important for you to keep on task and for motivating yourself to get to the end of the week for the chance to eat your favourite things. Having that end goal in sight and planned will help make things seem real and should help you do the work. Throughout the week you should look to swap your usual ‘bad’ foods for healthier options, even if it means changing a canned drink for a no added sugar or flat alternative. Progression is progression no matter how big or small! It would do you a great favour to research food alternatives or even meal plans through google or libraries, even asking somebody would be a great way to gain knowledge and help put your diet on track.
Top Tips to dieting
- Eat before you go out as this will help you to stop finding the need eat out and select poor food choices such as a Mc Donald’s breakfast or that Greggs pasty you wanted for lunch. Eating a healthy sensible meal before you leave the house will make you feel full and stop those naughty habits!
- Choose foods that you are confident you actually want to be eating and not ones you will be forcing yourself to eat. For example, if you don’t like apples then don’t eat them, try another fruit or a food source that provides the same vitamins and minerals. Force eating will ruin your motivation and will lead to a decline in progress or even total failure.
- Don’t make yourself go without food for too long or you will be more inclined to take or pick up some quick, convenient comfort foods that are easily accessible. Make sure you eat well before leaving the house or that the fridge is stacked with your healthy foods to make sure you don’t have to fight temptation and give in to your own pressure.
- Cut down on sugary foods, cereals and drinks as these will give you more calories than you need and will also start to give you other ill effects such as teeth decay and in extreme cases give you diabetes issues. Using sweeteners or low sugar alternatives are a good way to stay healthy and keep those extra calories away!
- Eating Chicken and Fish are fantastic ways of getting in high amounts of protein in a tasty and relatively flexible way. Chicken and Fish can be eaten alone or put into sandwiches, salads, pies, Quiches… the possibilities are endless! With such high amounts of protein packed into these foods it would be silly not to eat them, or at least try them. Quorn mince is also a great way to pack in the protein, with a lot less fat than beef I would also recommend trying this for dinner one day. Maybe as part of a Shepard’s pie.
- Cutting down on processed foods is important as manufactures often add lots of extra ingredients in order to keep them frozen or last a longer time, often enough these additions are totally unnecessary and are bad for us in the long run. Try and stay away from the microwave meals and prepare something fresh and straight from the fridge to avoid extra preservatives and harsh chemicals.
I feel like this is a good place to leave the first post about nutrition. For a first instalment I hope this has helped and was an entertaining read. If you have any questions at all please hit up the contact section on this website, leave a comment, follow the blog and share with your friends! Thanks once again, my next post will be ‘Perseverance’ and that will be uploaded Wed 4th Jan. Don’t give up!