Would you agree that healthy eating takes discipline and practice?
Especially if you were not brought up eating nutritionally valuable food.
Or if you have found yourself simply falling into patterns of unhealthy eating.
Fortunately, changing a habit is simpler than it might seem at first glance.
Are you ready and willing to make a change that is lasting?
Then you will be able to change your habits and enjoy a healthy lifestyle from here on out.
First of all, you have to identify your unhealthy habits before you can begin to change them.
This can be difficult for many people. One way is to keep journals of your regular activities and habits. That way you can begin to identify patterns that are self-destructive.
When you have identified self-destructive patterns, you can preempt them so that you do not keep repeating them. Quite often, self-destructive actions have trigger points that you can identify.
If you know what causes you sabotage your efforts, then you can look fo ways to avoid them. Or if the sabotage has already begun, you're already halfway through a bag of chips, you can check yourself before you give up and lose your progress.
Next, after you have identified your negative habits, it is time to try some intervention. This is what is called being mindful. Instead of just running on autopilot and not thinking about what you're choosing to eat or do, you take note of each action. You consider what you are doing.
Sometimes it is helpful to have an unbiased, unattached person help you identify your negative patterns and address them in a healthy way.
You have the power to change your habits.
When you know what sets you up for sabotage and you find you're on a slippery slope, you can interrupt your thoughts and actions. You can choose to move in a more positive direction.
If you found yourself standing in front of the pantry cupboard mindlessly eating chips or on the couch late a night eating Whispers. You could stop it right then. Close the cupboard. Get up off the couch.
Taking an action that moves you interuppts what happening in the now.
After you have closed the cupboard door or got up off the couch, you can take another action. have a glass of water. Brush your teeth.
I don't know about you but as soon as I have minty breath I do not want to eat or drink anything.
If you find yourself craving a food that you know will not serve you nutritionally ask yourself what is it about the food that you want it so badly.
By identifying how that food will "help" you can take steps to acknowledge underlying feelings and emotions. This is one way to physically rewire your brain so that you are no longer a slave to your impulses.
And that is how healthy eating begins!
Two reasons that are keeping you from reaching your goals.
Tea with Lee - Saturday, 18 July 2020
Two things that I keep hearing from clients that are keeping them from reaching their goals is motivation and consistency.
These go hand in hand. When you’re motivated you’ll be consistent and when you’re consistent then you are motivated.
Use the Habit Tracker to help you stay consistent.
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So this week I thought I'd focus on something that we all have...
Good news though - Fat doesn't make you FAT!
In fact it is essential to our ongoing good health.
Not only does it help our body to absorb vitamins and minerals, it also produces and releases hormones that affect your organs.
But now don't get all complacent about your body fat.
There are 2 different types of fat.
And where they are found is critical.
Just like in real estate, it's a case of Location, Location, Location!
There is subcutaneous fat.
This is the fat that lies below your skin. It keeps you warm and cushions you from a fall or bump. It stores calories.
It is PINCHABLE.
The other type of fat is Visceral Fat.
It stores calories too.
It is found deep inside your abdominal cavity. It surrounds your organs. It is Firm to press.
It is not squishy and pinchable.
When you have too much visceral fat it can increase your LDL cholesterol. That is the bad kind.
It can also increase your blood pressure.
Visceral fat makes your body less sensitive to insulin which can increase your chances of Type 2 diabetes.
How do you know if you have too much visceral fat?
It is all about apples and pears!
What does fruit have to do with it, you ask...
Well think of the shapes of these 2 fruits.
And apple is round and a pear is triangular.
They give you a picture of where fat is stored on your body.
Pears store weight on their hips, thighs and bum.
And it is subcutaneous fat.
It is surface level fat.
Apples on the other hand, store fat around their bellys. Hence the name Belly Fat.
To get a more specific confirmation of whether you could be an apple or pear, there are 2 measurements to take.
The first is your waist measurement.
Feel where your hip bone is.
Feel the top of it and measure around from this point.
Take a couple of measurements
and Don't Hold Your Breath!
You want an accurate measurement!
It is best to have a waist circumference of less than 89cm (35in) if you are a woman.
If you are a man then your waist circumference should be less than 102cm (40in).
The second measurement is your hips.
Measure 20cm down from the top of your hips. That is the point at which to measure your hips.
Take the measurement with your feet together.
Now for a bit of maths!
Take your Waist Circumference and divide it by your Hip Circumference to get your waist to hip ratio.
WC/HC = WHR
e.g. 74cm/97cm = 0.77
Women should have a WHR of less than 0.8 and men should have a ratio of less than 1.
Having a greater ratio of visceral fat is linked to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, strokes and other chronic diseases like Alzheimers.
Belly fat also produces inflammatory molecules that go into your blooldstream.
Continuous long term inflammation puts your body under severe stress.
As a result we become one big hormonal imbalance.
And that is a topic for another day.
So since you can't spot reduce fat around your tummy what can you do?
1) Keep track of your measurements. They are far more telling than the scale ever will be.
I have been tracking my measurement for 19 years, off and on!!
When you lose cm you're losing FAT.
If you're losing Fat then your risk of Type 2 diabetes and other lifestyle diseases are decreased.
2) Sweat each day.
Belly fat responds well to endurance exercise that raises your heart rate. Running, biking, swimming, rowing are going to help.
3) Choose to eat foods that are whole i.e. they aren't packaged and processed - vegetables, lean protein and healthy fats.
4) Sleep - get 7 - 9 hours of sleep per night. Your body needs time to repair itself. Lack of sleep affects your appetite.
And now I'd like to invite you to book a Free 20 minute strategy session so that we can work out some ways to help you move forward & start losing your belly fat.
Click the button below to book your session on my scheduler. It sounds fancy but it's not really!
When you live in the moment and stop worrying about the past and future, then you can sharpen your focus on the present. This is practising mindfulness.
There are many benefits you get from being more mindful, including when it comes to eating.
Why Use Mindfulness for Eating Habits?
Mindfulness is a state of living in the moment. It is where you think about, enjoy and sense what is happening right now. You aren't worrying about the past or future.
It is not only helpful for your mental health and wellbeing, but also for your hunger and appetite.
Here are some ways to use mindfulness to help with your appetite.....
In mindfulness, you learn to exist only in the moment.
What does this mean for you and eating?
When you eat, you get rid of all outside diversions so that you are only thinking about what you are eating.
This means turning off the TV. Not using your cell phone, and not
listening to music.
You want to be in a quiet, peaceful environment where you focus on what you are eating.
Concentrate on the quality of the food, the smells, tastes, and textures.
You can learn to enjoy and appreciate food for what it is. For how it feeds your body, instead of eating without thinking.
You are changing your eating attitudes by developing a mindful eating practice.
2. Learn to Identify Hunger
Mindful eating helps you identify true hunger from other types of hunger.
There are many types, including mouth hunger, mind hunger and emotional hunger.
True hunger is when your stomach sends you cues that it is time to eat.
If you eat at regular times during the day then you would likely get these hunger pangs around the same time each day.
But, if you tend to eat and snack as and when then you might feel constantly hungry. This is because your body doesn’t have a good eating routine.
3. Live a Mindful Life
Not only will mindfulness help when it comes to eating and your appetite, but it helps in other ways too.
You learn to value each moment and focus only on how you feel right now.
You don’t stress yourself out about worries of the future or regrets of the past.
Living in the moment is about accepting your life right now. It is about using that to better yourself physically, emotionally, and mentally.
There are so many advantages to mindfulness even beyond helping with your hunger and appetite.
And when you have mastered mindfulness, you can manage your weight and have a wholesome lifestyle.
Heal Your Relationship with Food
Mindfulness while eating is very close to intuitive eating. You are going to change how you eat, what you choose to eat, and how you feel when you eat.
If you have spent years restricting food and dieting then that is an area that you would need to work.
Mindfulness can help with you that.
It is going to teach you how to recognize your hunger cues, and give you something to focus on while eating.
You won’t simply snack mindlessly. With time it can also help with any binge eating tendencies you might have.
Signs You Have a Damaged Relationship with Food
Many people have a bad relationship with food and don’t realize it. They yo-yo diet or restrict constantly and then go through periods of overeating compulsively.
This can be binge eating, or overeating of foods during certain times, like when they are stressed or have cravings.
Mindfulness is going to help you concentrate more on your eating habits, instead of on what you eat.
Join me in my Facebook group - Being Healthy Made Simple to learn more about how you can become mindful in your eating.