With warmer weather here, I hope that encourages everyone to get outside and exercise! I have found that when I exercise, I tend to not want to eat junk food, but, instead healthy food. Here are some tips that I find work for ensuring healthy eating:
1. Don't keep junk food in your house!
This is a BIG one. If it's not there, you won't be tempted to eat it. Instead choose to find healthy foods to eat as a treat, such as fresh fruit or yogurt.
2. Make your own snacks.
When you make your own food, you know exactly what you are putting in it. Choose a day out of the week that you aren't as busy and make that your day to prepare snacks for the week. Go online and find some healthy recipes for granola bars and snack mixes. Or, if you find a recipe you like that isn't particularly healthy, make some ingredient changes and make it healthy.
3. Do a menu plan for the week.
This is huge!!! If you know exactly what you are going to be eating at each meal, you will be less likely to reach for something unhealthy. It also is a great way to save money. Instead of just choosing random things to put in my grocery cart, I only get the items I need to make the menu I have chosen for the week. It also helps you to intentionally add those fruits and veggies to each meal.
4. Do prep work ahead of time.
This goes along with the menu plan. Have your salad chopped up ahead of time, along with other veggies and fruits. If all you have to do is open the fridge to find something prepared to eat, you will be less likely to grab that bag of chips (which you shouldn't have in your house anyway!).
5. Instead of a whole cheat day- just have a cheat meal.
I firmly believe in not completely depriving yourself of some of the foods you really love. Most people will have a cheat day in their week, which can lead to a lot of unhealthy calories being consumed. Instead, have a cheat meal- it will still give you something to look forward to, but you won't go overboard on the calories. Thirty five hundred calories equals 1 pound. It would be fairly easy to eat 3500 calories if you had a whole cheat day! REMEMBER: EAT TO LIVE, DON'T LIVE TO EAT!!!!! If we can get our minds wrapped around that, we will want to fill our bodies with healthy foods.
6. Soup is where it's at!
Soup is a great way to eat a meal with low calories. If you are out to eat, always choose a clear broth soup, not a cream based soup. Most restaurants use heavy cream to make those types of soup. If you are home making your own soup, you can still have a creamy type of soup, but instead use skim milk and some flour or cornstarch to cream it. It works great and you save a lot of fat and calories. And, choose to make a soup that has a lot of veggies in it- they tend to pick up the flavor of the broth and even kids who don't normally like veggies will eat it.
7. Grocery shop around the outside perimeter of the store as much as possible.
Next time you are at the grocery store, look and see what is on the shelves in the middle of the grocery store as opposed to the perimeter of the store. I have readers in other countries, so this may not be true in other parts of the world, but, unfortunately here in the United States, those shelves in the middle of the grocery store are filled with processed foods. Produce, meats, and dairy are on the perimeter of the grocery store. Once I eliminated chemicals from my family's diet, I don't shop those inside aisles near as much as I used to. Obviously, things like condiments, rice, pasta and beans are in those middle aisles, and those can be healthy choices. But, there are a lot of processed foods lurking on those shelves, too!!!
I hope this helps you in getting your family on the right track with their eating!!