This is Part Two in our discussion of the best nutrition plan. Please check out our first blog if you missed it.
Now that we have a good foundation on what to eat, let’s turn our attention on how to make our lifestyle choices sustainable. We know that a diet that you can continue is the one that will provide the best results. But creating a sustainable eating pattern that can withstand the ups and downs of life is tough.
Step one is to focus on your environment. If you live, work, and play with unhealthy food surrounding you, then it will be almost impossible to avoid these temptations and reach your goals.
- Meal plan ahead of time and create a shopping list.
- Make it difficult to eat unhealthy foods! If you don’t want to eat it, don’t buy it. If you did buy it, hide it!
- Make it easier to eat healthy foods! Spend a few minutes cutting up fruits and vegetables into snack-size pieces or preparing them for a future meal. Batch cook beans or lentils to have them available throughout the week.
- If there seems to always be cake in the break room at work, bring your lunch and try to avoid this area when hungry. Or ask if your co-workers wouldn’t mind putting sweets in the fridge or a designated drawer. Out of sight, out of mind!
It’s also very important to cultivate a positive mindset and focus on the habit of eating rather than rely sheer willpower.
How to create a sustainable eating plan:
- Identify your WHY: Are you doing this for your kids? Your grandkids? To travel more? Maybe its for health reasons like weight loss, building muscle, or preventing/reversing a chronic illness? Identifying your goals and values shift your motivation from something you NEED to do into something you WANT to do. Verbally repeat this goal every time you wake up or sit down to eat.
- Stick with what brings you joy: The only way to sustain a diet is to actually enjoy what you’re eating and the efforts it took to get the food on the plate. Be mindful and intentional when you eat. Eat at the table and keep phones at bay. Eat slowly and savor the food in front of you.
- Find support: Having a community can be very impactful for long-term success. Emphasize family dinner time, find like-minded and encouraging friends, and enjoy the time spent with others around the dinner table.
- Don’t shoot for perfection. Eating properly for your body is important most of the time; but there are many other factors (both good and bad) that will cause us to make less-than-ideal food decisions. It’s ok to indulge at a holiday meal or on your birthday! By making good choices for yourself most of the time, you will still reap almost all of the benefits without feeling like you’re missing out. Consistency is more important than perfection!
How we can help:
- You can work directly with our health coach! Health coaching can be a great way to provide some guidance and accountability when making changes for your health. You can check out the health coaching packages on our website and sign up (https://wildhealthasheville.com/add-on-services/)
- Our precision medicine programs are designed to give you the most comprehensive assessment of health that is personally tailored to you. Using genetics, extensive blood work, and health coaching, you will gain valuable insights into your best diet and exercise plan, your health risks, and personalized strategies to improve your health. You can check out our precision medicine packages and sign up here (https://wildhealthasheville.com/precision-medicine-primary-care/)