Our Lifelong Struggle With Food
We are at the end of the year and one thing that many people do at this time of year is creating a New Year’s resolution. I would venture to say that going on a diet or eating healthy is one of the most listed. What makes eating healthy so difficult? In my opinion, it is the change that we struggle with, change is one of the biggest struggle people have. Changing how we eat is still a change and it is so easy to just fall back on old habits. We go eat out, we go to a party, we justify falling back to our comfort foods and food is always just in front of us, whatever our reason, it is difficult. How do we flip that switch for good and maintain a better eating habit?
Here are a few questions you need to answer before you begin down this path. Why do you want to eat better? What does success look like too you? Do you plan to add exercise to your plan?
You need to determine why you want to change, what is the end goal and how you plan on achieving the goal. Do you want to maintain better health for being less tired and fatigued? Do you have a health condition that will be better managed if you lost weight and maintained it? Do you want to be able to play with your children without getting out of breath? Do you want to have confidence in your body appearance? Whatever your reason, write it down in order to keep yourself motivated, will help you change your lifestyle and be healthier.
Next, we need to form a plan that works for you, don’t fall into a plan that is too restrictive and causes you to fail. When you start eating healthy and working out to lose weight, it can seem like you are depriving yourself of everything you ever loved eating. Restriction is not healthy. Getting fit, losing weight, and improving your health is not about reducing how much you eat to nothing. We may reduce food groups depending on our goal but be careful not to move to fast. When you have an over reduction concept in your mind, it becomes hard to maintain a positive mindset to weight loss or healthy eating.
Don’t fall into fads that call for you to deprive yourself. Yes, cut down on junk food but this does not mean you can’t ever eat them again! Everything in moderation is the key.
Seeing this as a lifestyle change rather than a diet is important because we often see diets as temporary measures that will come to an end. Eating a balanced diet with wholesome good foods with all the nutrition your need will give you the space for the treats that you can enjoy. You will find a slower approach will help you be more successful.
Whatever we want to achieve, requires a road map or plan. Eating healthier also requires a plan. Meal planning for a healthy lifestyle is key to help you achieve your goals. Whether you are eating healthy to lose weight or changing your habits to feel healthy, planning your meals will help you stay on track with your changes. Lack of preparation is a one of the reasons why you struggle to eat healthy. Meal planning is a step in the right direction.
Meal planning is when you plan in advance what you will have for breakfast, lunch or dinner. You need to have a plan, a shopping list and an idea how you will succeed. To make this change you must shop differently, cook differently and this takes planning. By having an idea of what you are going to eat, you are less likely to pick up something not on your plan. Planning is half the issue – you know what you want to eat! Meal planning for busy people is a life changing technique to help you stay on track with your lifestyle changes.
Changing your eating habits and introducing an active lifestyle requires discipline. Lacking discipline can be one of the reasons why you struggle to eat healthy. Willpower is important however disciplining yourself will be how to get a lifestyle ingrained within you. The discipline of a regular routine as a child is what makes it so natural to brush your teeth before bedtime as an adult. Take control of your environment, focus on your goal and remember, it takes time, discipline and willpower with a lot of extra effort on top. Does that mean you can’t change your habits? No! But you have to outsmart your future self.
I have been on this path for almost 20 years, it is constant effort and evolution. I am much closer to a healthy lifestyle than I was in the beginning. I have failed and started over, I have changed my plan many times, but regardless of what has happened, I keep trying. I encourage everyone to find the healthy lifestyle that works for you and that is something you can achieve.