New Year New You
I hope you had an enjoyable break over the Christmas period. The New Year is already upon us and you may have either already set some New Year resolutions or are planning to do so and have not got around to it quite yet. Maybe you have set and broke them already or you may need some guidance on setting meaningful resolutions.
Read on for some tips for setting some goals around a healthier diet and lifestyle..………
So what is a resolution – it is an intention to do something. As part of our service we work with our clients to establish health goals. We then help our clients establish which areas they need to focus on in order to reach their goals. And from this we assist our clients in setting their personal specific action steps.
So in a nutshell we help you…………………
1. Establish health goals
what you want to achieve or what end result you want
2.Set areas of focus
areas you need to focus on to achieve your goals
3. Set Action Steps
what you are actually going to do to help you reach your goals
Action steps are basically the same as the New Year resolutions – they are basically stepping stones towards a bigger picture and end goal. So in order to set meaningful New Year resolutions you need to establish first and foremost what your overall health goal is – the end result you want and work down from that.
For example a lot of our client’s would have a goal to improve energy levels and increase vitality. 2 areas of focus could be quality sleep and introduction of nutrient dense whole food diet. Possible action steps from this could be:
“In bed, lights out by 11pm four nights a week”
“Introduce a mixed salad comprising of 2 green leafy vegetables and 3 fresh coloured vegetables 5 days a week”
To work, resolutions need to be positive rather than negative, state what you are going to do and not what you are not going to do. In terms of food concentrate on what you are adding to your diet and not on what you are giving up. Your resolutions need to be specific, realistic (baby steps), measurable, relevant to your health goals and time bound. Get them out of your head and write them down. Stick them up somewhere, where you can see them.
For example; “I am going to eat healthier and lose weight” won’t work! By being more specific and establishing a time frame increases accountability e.g. I am going to lose an average of 2 pounds a week for the next 10 weeks. Get the picture? Take a look at what I regard as some helpful and achievable resolutions below for healthy eating and a lighter weight for 2016.
1. I will shift my mindset from dieting to good health.
Give up the diets and the food restrictions. Instead think of eating to nourish your body, giving it the essential nutrition it needs. A change in mindset means that you will open your eyes to the huge variety of wholefoods available to us and endless ways to combining these foods for tasty and satisfying meals.
2. I will eat modest portion sizes and never go back for seconds.
Increased portion sizes are a huge contributor to our obesity problem. Everything now is supersized with jumbo packets of crisps, maxi bars of chocolate and huge muffins and lattes. Even freshly-squeezed juices come in mega-cups equal to 4 or 5 pieces of whole fruit!
Research by Dr Barbara Rolls from Pennsylvania State University shows that people eat according to what’s on their plate. The results showed that we don’t stop half way when our stomach signals it’s full. We do our best to eat to the bottom of the pack or until the plate is clean. When really we should stop eating when we are ¾ full.
3. I will aim to eat up to 8 portions of fresh vegetables and fruit a day which include salads.
I love leafy green salads and suggest anyone battling to lose weight eat one a day, either as a lunch meal or as a side salad with dinner.
Salads have what call dieticians call a low calorie density – in other words, there are few calories in a given volume so they fill your stomach without overloading you with too much – even with dressing.
Research has shown that a salad eaten at the start of a meal (a pre-load) reduces the overall amount of food you eat at that meal.
Salads can be just vegetables or with added protein such as chicken. steak, eggs, cheese, chickpeas or whatever you prefer. Treat yourself to a salad recipe book to inspire you to tasty, enticing salads
4. I will walk or swim four times a week for at least 30 minutes.
This is the one that gets dropped the soonest. Why? Because we have to make time to fit in exercise and that’s not always easy. Keep your exercise ambitions modest and realistic. If it’s something fun or a sport that you like, then you’re more likely to do it – often. And there are so many easy ways to get your walking in. Walk to the shops for that bottle of milk. Walk to the station a few times a week. Park furthest away from the exit in a car park. Take the stairs instead of the lift. Or take the kids for a walk in the park at the weekend. You get the idea.
5. I will be more active in my daily life
Incidental activity – taking the stairs, cleaning the house or getting stuck into the gardening – burns extra calories without having to go to the gym.
Or walk or swim. Change the way you view these ‘chores’ and you’ll suddenly see them as ‘opportunities’ to exercise.
6. I will practise mindful eating for my main meal of the day
Eat slowly, savouring each mouthful and enjoying the different flavours. Focus on the food in front of you. Put your fork and knife down between bites. Sit down to eat, even if it’s only for a snack. Turn the TV off and don’t read.
Take the first step to a healthier you…………
So if you need some help in setting meaningful new year resolutions and guidance and support in putting them into practice or if you want to jump start your new year with a positive health kick give us a call @ help2health nutrition at 086 8067832 or drop a line to firstname.lastname@example.org and we can discuss how we can help you achieve your health goals for 2016.