Calories in, calories out, right? Not necessarily. There are many ways to go about getting results with our nutrition, but most commonly people tend to think it requires obsessively logging and tracking every piece of food the goes in our mouths. While this for sure is the most accurate way to do it, it doesn’t mean it’s the only way.
Not everybody is ready to commit to a big overall lifestyle change right away. This can be a very intimidating thing for some, we totally understand that. It doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing approach. Changes can be made in smaller increments that will have larger, and longer lasting effects also! Everybody has different needs, and that is partly what our Nutrition Coaches work to understand when we chat with our clients during our No Sweat Intro.
In the nutrition world, sometimes the word “balance” gets used too much. Balance means different things for different people, but we want to make sure we have covered all of the macronutrients and micronutrients that will give us those health boosting properties we need from our food.
Make sure to include a protein, carbohydrate, fibre, and a healthy fat source with every meal you consume. We want these to come from whole foods as much as possible, so we get all the essential micronutrients from them as possible. If we can focus on these pillars with every plate, your quality of food will clean itself up tremendously and start some forward progress for you.
Clean Out Your Cupboards
It goes without saying, “Out of sight, out of mind.” The easiest way to get around some of the temptations you are going to face is just to get rid of them. But that doesn’t always bode well for the rest of your family, nor for long term habit development. Real life will always have those temptations around, and we just need to learn how to manage ourselves when it comes to those situations.
We like to do this in a green light, yellow light, red light, type of way. Take a look at your cupboards and pantry currently. As you read through these categories, refer back to your cupboards and start to classify where some of those items would fit in these categories.
Green light foods: These are often things like vegetables, fruits, meats, seeds, .. all the things you know are good. Those things that don’t raise any questions about, “Well does this fit with my goals?”
Red light foods: These are foods that just don’t fit whatsoever. Items that actually have sugar listed, or ingredients that end in -ose. Things you know you shouldn’t be eating but are in your cupboards anyways – chips, chocolate, etc. These things typically stray you away from your goals. We don’t really need to flush this out, this part seems to be common sense!
Yellow light foods: The “maybe” foods. The things that can be neither here nor there. The things that we can live with in compromise — and that’s the best word used to describe yellow light foods. This is the middle ground between red light and green light foods. The things that are improvements from red light foods, but could still stand to be improved to be made green light choices. For instance, flavoured coffee creamer would be a red light food. It becomes a yellow light food when you make a compromise to change to almond milk in your coffee each morning. This could become a green light choice if we drank our coffee black.
So take a second look at your cupboards now. If you have to, go through the process of hand writing out which items fall where. And when you find some red items, either discard them, or find a way to change them to yellow items. And if you find some yellow items, how can you change them to green light foods? The more green lights you have in your cupboards, the easier this will be for you, and the better results you will have.
Remember back to a moment in your life where you felt in control. In that moment, you knew what to expect because you had a plan. That’s exactly what we’re going to work on this week: developing a plan.
Most of us don’t have a personal chef cooking for us. So eating well doesn’t happen by accident. It happens because we make a plan and we prepare and execute that plan. And right away, you might feel overwhelmed by the thought process of some kind of complicated menu, with 7 days worth of different meals. No! Let’s keep this simple.
First off, the first two steps are as simple as they come:
- What meals could you make?
- How could you ensure that you have them when you need and want them?
For some, that might be something like tacos. This would mean thinking about the ingredients and the cooking process associated with it. You would also need to plan how you could store the leftovers, because leftovers are easy to make meals out of in the days that follow!
We don’t need to research complicated recipes and make 3 different meals for 7 different days. Try to pick meals that will warrant some batch cooking, that will leave you with leftovers for 2-3 days that you can just pull from. This is keeping things simple.
Small Changes Pay Off
Start with any one of these tips, and build yourself a little momentum. Once you get comfortable with one aspect, add another layer to it. Take the next step. Your confidence will continue to build, and then before you know it, you have made the lifestyle overhaul that frightened you at the very beginning.
Our Nutrition Coaches sit down and walk through a plan that is suitable for your comfort level. And together, we’ll work to develop what that best route to success looks like. Book your Free Intro now, and get started on step one!