I’ve been dragging my feet on this post. I guess it’a because I’m really dragging my feet on getting started with new habits, and publishing makes me more accountable. Whew! That’s scary :-).
I hope you’ve thought about my last post and decided with me that the best you ever starts with fitness from head to toe–body, mind, and spirit. They are all interconnected and all contribute to wholeness and health. You were put here for great things, so please don’t underestimate the value of your health in living a fulfilled and abundant life.
If this is all new, don’t be overwhelmed. Start small and remember the old question, “How do you eat an elephant?” The answer is still the same, “One bite at a time.” Approach health habits the same. Start with what is do-able to you and when you’ve mastered it, move on to the next. Otherwise, you’ll be tempted to quit altogether.
So today, start small and move on when you’re ready. You’ll be glad you did.
1-Ditch sugar and especially sugar substitutes. Do choose more nutritional sweeteners like raw honey or stevia, keeping in mind that less is still more.
Not only is sugar highly addictive and a leading cause of obesity, it is also linked to a number of illnesses in the body. This is not new evidence so you can find a great deal of information on this, but one of the simplest sites I found was http://authoritynutrition.com/10-disturbing-reasons-why-sugar-is-bad. Beware also of hidden sugar. Search the labels for dextrin, dextrose or other “ose” words, syrups (especially high fructose corn syrup) and malts.
Sugar substitutes are not an option. These are chemicals, not food, and highly toxic to the body. They are linked to tumors, cancer, and surprisingly obesity as they inhibit the body’s ability to determine when it’s full.
2. Ditch all processed foods. Do choose instead real food, a.k.a. whole food. When you read a food label, you should see food. Crazy idea isn’t it? One of the best sites I’ve found regarding healthy food choices is http://www.whfoods.com/foodstoc.php. It’s a non-commercial site with a wealth of info. Avoid so-called diet foods such as those labeled “low fat” and “low carb”. These are most often filled with chemicals. Our bodies were meant to burn energy, not detox after every meal.
3. Ditch refined carbs. Do good carbs. No carbs are no good. Our bodies need healthy carbohydrates to function properly, so just stick with those that come from fruits, veggies, and whole grains and you will not have the spikes and crashes that come from junk carbs.
4. Ditch high-sugar drinks (which we talked about). Do drink more water. No argument from any health experts here. Our bodies need water–typically half your body weight in ounces daily. Don’t budge on this. Not only does it rid waste, but it carries necessary nutrients through the body, metabolizes fat and so much more.
5. Ditch hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils. Do choose butter and unprocessed oils like coconut and olive. This is a hard one to fully implement because these processed oils are everywhere, but they are incredibly toxic to the body and cause us to pack on the pounds. They are in virtually all baked goods and snacks on the supermarket shelves as well as refrigerated doughs and fried foods like yummy restaurant french fries. So, while it’s great to avoid them entirely, even efforts to limit them from our own cupboards will go a long way. To understand why, go to: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/09/07/ban-artificial-trans-fat.aspx
6. Ditch all processed meats. Do opt instead for grass-fed meat and wild fish. Of course, I’m a firm believer that wild salmon is the world’s perfect protein–and that is only partially because it’s what I sell for a living :-). All protein is not created equal. Again, processed meats are filled with all kinds of chemicals that keep our bodies from functioning properly while grass-fed and wild meats offer lean, healthy, Omega-3 rich protein. Want to lose fat and build lean muscle? This is a sure way to do it. And don’t forget other healthy protein sources like raw nuts and organic eggs. For easy, readable charts on this, please click this link from a site I love, http://www.eatwild.com/healthbenefits.htm
7. Ditch the idea that you have to spend hours in the gym to be lean. Do what you enjoy instead. Just DO. We were created to live life, not watch someone else’s on TV, so keep moving. Play with your kids, enjoy outdoor games, go to the park, take long walks alone to think or a jog through the neighborhood. Don’t complicate it. Just move and move every day.
You are well on your way to a healthier, happier you. You are not only shaping your own health, but little eyes are watching and you are shaping theirs as well. Give your children not only tools for a healthy life, but an example of it as well.
I’m in this for the long haul and I hope you are too. Contact me anytime and let me know how it’s going for you.