The first few months of a new year seem to contain a fair few holidays, plus of course there is still summer socialising and various get togethers.
I would say that the majority of my clients find these occasions a real challenge and it can be quite dispiriting to have been on track with your healthy eating during the week, only to let loose at the weekend and find yourself back at square one.
What to do?
Well, most likely you can’t change the occasion, and there will always be occasions, but what you do have control over is your behaviour at the occasion.
Here are some suggestions:
- Limit the amount of alcohol you consume – better still, choose to go alcohol free that night. Remember, every two glasses of wine equals an hour’s brisk walking calorie-wise. Your body will metabolise alcohol before it deals with carbohydrates and before it gets to using much fat for fuel, so you are delaying fat burning. Also, who hasn’t had a couple of drinks and then decided What the Heck, I’ll just eat whatever tonight and start again tomorrow!
- If you are invited to a meal / BBQ offer to take a big green salad. At least then you know there is something you can pile on your plate.
- Have smaller portions if you are serving yourself.
- If you are invited out to a finger food type event that doesn’t start until 7pm or so, why not eat before you go and then just circulate at the event and don’t eat. You have had dinner and you don’t need to eat again.
- Nibbles can be a real trap. Nibbles normally come with alcohol and before dinner. So nibbles + alcohol + dinner + dessert = 4 meals in the space of time you would normally have one. If you don't start, it makes it easier to pass on the nibbles.
- If eating out, read the menu carefully and don’t be afraid to ask the waiting person to have the rice / potato / bread / noodles / sauce left off your plate.
It will always be a case of making the best choices you can and there is always something that is better than something else.
If things don’t go to plan, remember it is more about what you do at the next meal than what happened the night before. One bad day doesn’t mean the end of your healthy lifestyle. Every day you wake up with a clean slate, so make the most of the new day.
Long term health benefits of healthy eating and loss of excess fat are extensive.
Carrying extra fat raises your risk of various cancers, diabetes, heart disease and it also messes with your hormones over time. If you haven't done so already, read the article 'The Effects of Obesity' on my website.
Belly fat in particular is dangerous and increases inflammation in your body. Don’t wait until things go wrong to make changes to your diet and lifestyle. A few simple changes can make a big difference.
The top four I would suggest are:
- Reduce simple carbohydrates in your diet
- Reduce the amount of alcohol you drink
- Eat more low carb vegetables every day
- Exercise regularly. Exercise can be as simple as a 30 minute brisk walk. Put your shoes on, walk out of your door and walk for 15 minutes. Turn around and walk home. Done!
One of the main reasons people don’t start on the path of a healthy lifestyle is that they consider themselves to be too busy. It is always a case of priorities and if looking after yourself is a priority you will find a way to make it happen.
I have worked with some incredibly busy clients who were super organised and who prioritised eating right and fitting exercise in. For them, their health and managing their weight was a priority and they made it happen. You can too!
One of my clients is in her 50’s and wanted to lose a few kilos to shape up and feel better about herself. She was really focused and determined and ended up with abs to show off! Age does not have to be a barrier to getting in the best shape for you. Have a read of Lynne's testimonial here.
If you would like help with your eating plan, please do not hesitate to contact me.