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- Protein - I put this one first because it is the most important, and the most abundant nutrient in the body, other than water.
- Carbohydrate – Carbohydrates are second most important because they are our bodies preferred source of energy/fuel for our daily functions and workouts.
- Fat – Fats, aka lipids, are a misunderstood nutrient. They carry over twice as many calories per gram compared to carbohydrates and proteins, but its for a good reason.
- Try making around 80% or more of your diet consist of whole, unprocessed foods (i.e. animal proteins, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and whole grains).
- Enter your information into the handy-dandy healthy eating calculator and see how much food you should be eating here:
- Take ONE day to enter what you eat into an app like myfitnesspal or another calorie counter. See where you are starting, so you can know how far you need to go to get to where the calculator suggests.
- Don’t give up. Results don’t happen overnight. They take consistency, trouble-shooting, and hard work.
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- Go cold turkey. Don’t try to cut it down to “1 can a day”, because if you keep it in your diet, you are still fueling your cravings. It’s just making it harder to resist them now because you are only allowing yourself 1 can per day.
- Create options for replacement drinks. Often times we really just crave the carbonation of soda, not necessarily the sugar/chemicals. Or, we just are in a habit of drinking soda at that time of the day or at that particular restaurant we go out to eat at. So here are some options for what you can start replacing the soda with:
- Coffee – If you drink soda for the caffeine, try switching to coffee with light cream or a small amount of stevia/truvia. Coffee is completely acceptable in a healthy diet, it’s just typically the add-ons we put with coffee that create the problem.
- LaCroix – They have a ton of awesome flavors and no artificial ingredients! Find it in the soda aisle at your grocery store, but avoid the actual soda!
- Pellegrino – Carbonated water, but helps with that carbonation crave.
- Tea – Whether it’s hot or cold, just make sure its unsweetened. Nearly every restaurant has hot tea, and it’s a great way to having something special other than the soda.
- Kombucha – My favorite option! Kombucha is a little pricey, but it is carbonated and very good for you. It provides probiotics to help keep your gut bacteria levels healthy. A nice little treat to have every once in awhile, if the price tag is too much!
- Be ready for the withdrawal symptoms. Headaches, tiredness, cravings, etc. are all going to be there. Try to get some extra sleep during this time if possible, and hunker down for anywhere from a few days to 2 weeks, but rest assured, these symptoms WILL subside.
- Pay attention to your triggers. Do you always have a soda at 3 pm when you are getting groggy at work in the afternoon? Or can you just not imagine life without a nice cold Coke next to your Friday night pizza? Try avoiding the vending machine at work and pack one of the other healthy options to enjoy at 3 pm at your desk. Or try having a different restaurant/meal ritual for Friday night for the time being. Avoid your triggers to make the process easier.
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- Seeing foods as “good” or “bad”
- Eating in secret or sneaking food into your day
- “Rewarding” yourself with food
- Feeling disgusted, guilty, or upset after eating
- Set boundaries with unsafe foods – Typically, if something is a “trigger” food, these foods must be removed from the diet completely. If you tend to binge eat ice cream when you get upset or are stressed, then it’s best to not keep ice cream in the house. It must be relearned how to manage these foods in a healthier way, but before that can happen, you must abstain from them for some time.
- Learn healthier coping strategies – Start paying attention to what causes your cravings. What place are you in? What emotion are you feeling? Figure them out and start building different responses.
- Distract yourself – When you feel those cravings coming on, go watch an episode of your favorite TV show, go for a walk or to a class at OCF, organize something, take a nap, or drink a whole glass of water!
- Make yourself happy – Cravings and addictions are usually associated with negative feelings or moods. Also, it is literally impossible for your body to create cortisol (our stress hormone), when you are laughing. So do something you love!
- Try replacing it with a healthier option – Instead of eating a whole piece of Portillo’s chocolate cake, why not try just having a little square of dark chocolate to curve your sweet tooth? Or instead of a glass of wine at night, why not try some hot tea or even kombucha in a wine glass??
2016 12 02
- You are perfect as you are. Never stop striving towards the best version of you, but first you must accept and love yourself as you are. Self-love is so important in this world.
- Your body cannot produce muscle growth/development without rest. Rest days are necessary for progress. Your body produces the most HGH (human growth hormone) while at rest.
- Exercise produces high stress levels, which in small doses is helpful to the body, but as a constant can be just as harmful as a consistently stressful job.
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- You were born you. Whether that was thin, tall, short, round, black, white, or green. Embrace who you are and work to be the best version of YOU because you were not meant to be anyone else.
- Surround yourself with people who are positive forces to have in your life. Others who have a healthy relationship with food, with activity, and with themselves.
- Stand in the mirror each morning and TELL yourself out loud one thing that you love about yourself and that you are worth love.
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