There are tons of articles on the Internet with tips and tricks to help you lose weight. The truth is that extreme diets don’t work (trust me, I’ve tried). When you limit yourself to a restricted amount of food, your body will relapse and you will start binging on the junk food that you used to eat. So instead of trying to lose weight in a short period of time, try changing your mindset. It’s about living a healthy lifestyle beyond all else. Over the years, I’ve been able to develop a healthier relationship with food and nourish my body. Call me crazy, but I consider it a spiritual relationship. I’ve recently made health my #1 priority. I’ve realized that when I didn’t treat my body well, it was impacting all the other areas in my life. Here are my top tips to becoming a healthier you where I will show you that you can still indulge in your favorite foods.
Eat at home
Nothing beats a homemade meal. In my second year of university, I was in my best shape because I cooked my own meals every week. I did my food prep on the weekend and kept it all in tupperware boxes in the fridge so when I’d come home it’ll be ready. Home-cooked meals are so beneficial to your body, because you cook with fresh ingredients which are jam-packed with the nutrients and vitamins that you need. You also control what goes into your food.
Have plant-based meals
This follows my previous point. Plant-based meals are amazing for your health. Use a lot of vegetables in your dishes because it will fill you up with plenty of good vitamins and nutrients, as well as boosting your energy levels! I enjoy having salads, because it fills me up really quickly. You can still get your greens in other ways, like in casserole dishes or curries (if you prefer hot dishes). And there are tons of recipes on Pinterest if you need inspiration.
Stop buying junk food
This is a habit that I developed early on, but I always try to avoid buying chocolate bars or packs of biscuits. If I don’t have them in my cupboard, then I know I won’t eat them. I find that when I do crave them (and this is a very specific craving) then I would buy them at the supermarket or share them with a friend. I hardly ever buy them to bring home, but instead I stock up on rice crackers, low-calorie popcorn, fruit or nuts and raisins instead.
This is a given, but staying active is really important to leading a healthy lifestyle. I find that exercising clears my head, lowers my stress levels and takes the anger out of me if I’m going through a tough time. Even if it’s just going on walks or getting some fresh air. I try to get to the gym 2-3 times a week and sometimes I’d go for runs when the weather is nice. I tend to feel very sluggish if I don’t exercise during the week. Exercise actually releases endorphins and makes you feel happier.
Never skip breakfast
I probably say this a gazillion times, but breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Why? Because it prevents you from feeling hungrier and you won’t feel like snacking the rest of the day. The best diet consists of a large breakfast packed with nutrients like oatmeal with fruit or eggs with veggies, a medium-size lunch with some carbs, veggies and lean meat, and a small-portioned dinner with healthy snacks in between your meals.
Know when to treat yourself
As I said, limiting yourself to a very strict diet with no sugar or carbs can actually be really detrimental to your body. Trust me, I’ve tried and it failed terribly. It made me eat more and gain weight because I was craving junk food so much. Allow yourself to have a treat once or twice every week to congratulate yourself to how well you’ve been doing. Of course, you can still indulge on your favorite snacks (and finish a whole pizza, like I did a few weeks ago). Just make sure you don’t do this everyday.
Avoid processed drinks and foods
Avoid anything that has ingredients that you don’t understand. Every product has its details behind the pack and if it’s with mostly chemical-based ingredients and E numbers, then you should most likely be avoiding it. Granola bars I’m looking at you! And drinking Diet Coke is actually worse for you, because as they put artificial sugar which is more addictive than real sugar. So don’t trust those ads when they put ‘Zero Sugar’! And fun fact: did you know that you can still stick a label with 100% fat free on sugar because sugar has no fat in it? So whenever you see something that says ‘no fat’, then it’s probably full of sugar.
Drink plenty of water
It’s so easy to forget this sometimes! Experts say you should be drinking 2-3 liters a day, and honestly it helps so much! Not only does it make you go to the toilet a lot (which is a bummer – *hah* see what I did there) but also it will make you feel fuller so you’ll feel less hungry. I always make sure I have a water bottle with me so it’s easier to fill it up whenever I need to.
These are the things that I’ve learned all the years. Trust me, it takes a while to develop this lifestyle. I’ve banished myself from using the scale and just trust myself on how I feel. Wellness begins from loving yourself and the skin you’re in. It makes such a difference, trust me! Although it’s taken me a very long time (which you can read about here), I’ve learned to love my body and take good care of it, because you’re stuck with it for the rest of your life!
Oh, and did I mention I started a Youtube channel? In this video, I also talk about my relationship with food and my secrets to feeling good and looking good! Hope you enjoy!
What are your top tips?