While food is always a big part of our lives, it is even more so during the holidays. We go out more and eat more. Things are creamier, heavier and more buttery. It is so easy to get caught up in cocktails, appetizers, cookies and cakes that time of year, that it’s no surprise when the number on the scale is higher than it should be on January 2nd.
Eat Real Food.
Only eat food that you prepare. Summertime is the perfect time to eat fresh food – fruits and veggies are often fresh, local, and less expensive than buying them in winter. Do not eat anything from a box, restaurant or drive-thru. While you may choose to eat less by eliminating processed foods, you may find that you naturally eat just enough.
That was the recommendation for a short hiatus in the Land of Enough. I also made the recommendation during the summer, so you may have to adjust if you live in a colder climate. For a longer stay, like a lifetime, you will need to think about what you eat and why.
Ask questions like:
- Am I eating because I’m hungry?
- Am I an emotional eater?
- What emotion triggers overeating?
- Can I indulge without going overboard?
- Do I feel deprived when I should feel satisfied?
The more real food you eat, the healthier you will be. In other words, stop buying your food in boxes and bags. If you don’t understand what’s in your food, or can’t pronounce everything on the ingredient list, don’t put it in your body. If you wouldn’t feed it to your children, reconsider consuming it yourself.
5 of my favorite posts about food. (one is mine)
- A Simple Guide to Eating Like a Human
- Simple Food and Eating: 8 Tips to Get You on the Right Track Today
- Eat Colors Not Calories
- Eating Healthfully – A Long Term Vision
- The Great Moderation Hoax
5 of my favorite books about food.
- Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual
- The Kind Diet: A Simple Guide to Feeling Great, Losing Weight, and Saving the Planet
- The Raw Food Detox Diet: The Five-Step Plan for Vibrant Health and Maximum Weight Loss
- The Conscious Cook: Delicious Meatless Recipes That Will Change the Way You Eat
- The Hip Chick’s Guide to Macrobiotics: A Philosophy for Achieving a Radiant Mind and a Fabulous Body
While food is delicious and satisfying, I think we need to remember that first and foremost, it is nourishing. Food can make our bodies strong, prevent disease, and fight disease. If you are curious about how food can really impact your health, I highly recommend reading The China Study.
Just as important as eating real food is, it is also important to maintain a healthy weight. This is not an easy task for everyone, myself included. This is the first time in many years, that “lose weight” wasn’t part of my new year’s resolution. Many readers have commented that when they shed stuff and start living more simply, they shed weight more easily as well. While that has been my experience too, I work hard to be healthy. In fact, because I have struggled with food and weight, I almost didn’t write this post. But then, I knew I had to if only to clear up a few myths.
- Myth #1 – All vegetarians are skinny. Becoming a vegetarian does not guarantee weight loss or magically arriving at your perfect body.
- Myth #2 – There is a quick fix to permanently lose weight. There are a zillion programs that will help you lose weight fast, but you know it’s coming back, badder and fatter.
- Myth #3 You can’t lose weight after 40. I am living proof that fat loss and muscle gain is very possible, even after 40.
Even though I sometimes want to be that girl who only eats seasonal vegetables, that are grown locally, I do not eat perfect meals every day. I drink wine, eat chocolate, indulge my sugar cravings (sometimes too frequently) and have fat days. I strive to eat foods that keep my body healthy, and eat just enough to satisfy, but I face the same struggles that some of you do. I don’t have all the answers, but I am learning everyday, and look forward to sharing more, and hearing your advice.
Enjoy delicious food but in smaller quantities. Recognize when you’ve eaten enough and move everyday. I have a few posts in mind moving forward that will help you shed excess weight. It won’t be radical change.(You know I’m not about that.) You won’t lose 20 lbs in 30 days, but you will feel better, get stronger and look amazing with a few simple, consistent changes.