I’m all about balance, moderation and consistency, but since the #1 New Year’s Resolutions seem to consistently revolve around losing weight, eating healthier and becoming fit(ter), I thought it was a good opportunity to put together a “Top Ten” list. Try making these changes and watch how they are bound to have a huge impact on your health in 2017!
- Never get too hungry – when you wait to eat until you’re starving, you will most likely always overeat. That’s because it takes 20 minutes for your satiety mechanism to kick in and tell your brain that you’re full. Oftentimes, you prematurely stuff yourself with whatever is in sight, which are most likely not the healthiest things. Also – hunger is not your friend. Don’t ignore it, because if you’re trying to decrease your calorie intake to drop fat, be aware that eating too few calories can slow down your metabolism and prevent you from shedding those extra pounds. Consistent weight loss isn’t about being overly indulgent OR too restrictive!
- Focus on nutrient balance verses calorie intake – I could go on and on about this one. Of course the amount of calories you eat matters in weight loss, but perhaps more important is the quality of food. Your brain is looking for nutrients – not calories – and will keep looking until it gets the nutrients it needs. This may explain your cravings. Most often, it’s a nutrient balance issue.
- Drink more water – Hydration is important for good health, athletic performance, and mental clarity. If you’re dehydrated, thirst often masks itself as hunger. Want to know if you’re drinking enough water? Try tracking it for a while through an app like My Water Balance.
- Start with soup – Watery foods are low in calorie density (low calories per serving size) and research shows soups increase satiety (the feeling of fullness). Soups can be an excellent weight loss tool. Just make sure your eating ones that are high in vegetables, beans and lean proteins. I like to encourage my clients to make a big batch of soup and freeze half of the batch. That way, when life gets busy you’ll always have healthy choices in the freezer. Here is a easy minestrone recipe that I made over the weekend http://therealfoodrds.com/minestrone-soup/ Feel free to make your own changes, but I added a little quinoa instead of pasta. If you don’t eat grains, add more veggies! Also, I added a dash of paprika and red pepper flakes –something to spice it up since it was a cold snowy weekend!
- Eat more fermented foods – They help you replenish your good gut bacteria. When you have good bacteria in your gut, you actually do a better job of absorbing nutrients. If you’re up for making your own fermented foods – that’s great! Still trying to figure out if you can stomach it at all? I just tried this brand – https://jacobsraw.com/product-category/krauts – it’s pretty good!! Experiment and find a brand of kraut that you enjoy.
- Use an oil mister – Olive oil is filled with antioxidants for the heart and blood cells; coconut oil is great to ramp up metabolism and lower bad cholesterol; flaxseed oil is filled with omega 3 fatty acids. But the key to oil is moderation. One tablespoon is about 120 calories so a drizzle can really add up. A mister saves on calories. If you don’t own an oil mister, invest in one!
- Drink ginger tea –There is a lot of hype around green tea (and it is amazing) but ginger tea is great too! It aids in digestion, helps reduce bloat and works to help those healthy bacteria in your gut. If you’re looking for something to sip post dinner – try ginger tea!
- Kick the salt habit for more spices – Most Americans consume too much sodium (mostly through processed food). The average American’s sodium intake is 3400mg, yet the American Heart Association recommends 1500mg. It’s not terrible to add salt to a dish, but why not try experimenting with new spices instead? Spices have so many medicinal qualities (if you haven’t read my blogs on turmeric and cinnamon, check them out here: http://reebokcrossfitbackbay.com/category/nutrition/).
- Find an accountability partner – Find a friend or family member who will go through the weight loss, healthier eating, or getting fit(ter) process with you. It’s fun and effective to have someone cheering you on and it’s wonderful to do the same for someone else. Enroll in Gino’s challenge – it’s great when there is a little $$$ at stake and huge bragging rights in the mix!
- Eat single ingredient food – Ever wonder what people mean when they say they eat real food?! What the heck is “real” food? It’s just a food that consists of a single ingredient. If you want to be a leaner, healthier person, then the best thing you can do for yourself is eat whole single ingredient foods!
We’d love to see you in our group Nutrition program or for private coaching in 2017. Make this the year that you decide to eat well and feel incredible.
To Your Amazing Health,
* This information should not be seen as medical advice and is not meant to take the place of seeing a licensed health professional. You should discuss any dietary supplement use and should not discontinue any prescription medication without first consulting your doctor.