Want to be healthier in 2014? Here are some of my favorite easy changes to get you on your way
1) Its 3pm, you’re starving and all you can think of is pouring your laundry quarters into the vending machine for something chocolaty and sweet. A lot of times we crave sugar because we need protein. Have a plain yogurt with fruit, turkey or tempeh wrapped in lettuce or no-mayo tuna salad with celery.
2) Carbohydrates get a bad wrap these days and refined carbs should definitely be consumed in moderation. Yet when you must have a piece of bread or a bagel, make a better choice. Sprouted, whole grain options will offer more nutrition and will be metabolized slower, keeping you fuller for longer.
3) At some point, it became assumed that vegetable oils are best for our health. Not true. A better choice is olive oil. Vegetable oils have a low smoke point, meaning they can burn easily and become toxic. Olive oil is much more stable when cooking over medium heat, helping your food be more nutritious. Second, vegetable oil is high in omega-6 fatty acids and low in omega-3 fatty acids. Olive oil has a much better balance, meaning your body will be more balanced as well.
4) I know you’ve heard it before, but I’m gonna say it again. Eat breakfast! Breakfast will kick start your metabolism for the day. When you starve yourself by saving your calories for the end of the day, your body goes into a state of shock and stress. Your adrenals secrete adrenaline which forces your metabolism to shut down. This ensures that everything you eat later will go straight to your hips or your stomach. No time in the morning? Cook oatmeal overnight in a slow cooker so it is ready by morning or grab a smoothie with protein powder and fresh fruit.
5) Starting an exercise program is an imperative part of any weight loss plan. My advice is to start slowly. If you go right from being inactive to exercising five times a week you will likely burn out quickly. Find a class that meets once or twice a week that excites you and build up from there. Maybe you’ve always wanted to try martial arts, belly dancing or figure skating. Make exercise something to look forward to as opposed to something you dread. Can’t afford a class? Get a group together and try different exercise DVDs. The group will help keep you accountable to your goals and will provide motivation.
These are my five tips! Give them a try!