17 July 2016

FIT AND HEALTHY: A WAY THAT REALLY WORKS

A food diary. Before you stop reading right here, let me tell you something first. Not the type of a food diary that multiple diet and fitness articles advise, the one where you write down everything you have eaten throughout the day every evening. But the "future" diary of everything you are going to eat the next day. Trust me, I know what I am talking about.

Developing healthy eating habits isn't as hard and confusing as many people like to imagine. It's not about strict limitations or depriving yourself of the food you love.

In fact, restrictions are the exact opposite of healthy - at some point, it will start affecting your mood and become really stressful. Which goes totally contradictory to the very meaning of healthy, doesn't it? There is an efficient way of leading a healthy eating lifestyle, however.

You will need a brand new fancy notebook (another excuse to go shopping, I know), or a Moleskine App for your smartphone or tablet. Now, we will need to fully customise it according to your preferences, medical diet if you have got one, personal taboos and other food you can't or don't want to eat.

The first page goes for the exhaustive list of all the foods you don't eat under any circumstances, such as, for instance, crisps, soda, instant microwaved food, etc. Use the second page for the list of all the foods you probably shouldn't eat, but you are going to afford those occasionally, such as pizza, burgers, sweets, chocolates and so on. The next page is going to host the list of the foods you must eat regularly to maintain the wellbeing of your organism, such as for example, avocado, spinach, dried apricots, chia seeds, linseeds, lemon water and everything else you, in particular, need.

Now, the planner itself. Each page goes to a full plan of your food for the next day. Every evening, take some time to plan your food schedule beforehand. Try thinking of anything you are going to eat the next day, to the extent of small unexpected snacks.

You certainly won't be able to thoroughly and blindly follow it, living the busy life you must be living. But you will have an approximate idea on what your ration is going to look like.

If an unplanned meeting or event suddenly pops up, try substituting the scheduled meal with the things most similar on the menu. If something went wrong, don't stress about it, and under no circumstance do feel guilty about it. Write down everything you ate instead, and start again tomorrow. You're a human, you are allowed to make mistakes, especially when it comes to food.

You most likely spend a lot of time obsessing over what you are eating, should and should not be eating, anyway. Why not make it a habit planning if beforehand? Especially if you are someone living by the daily planner, like myself. It takes less time than it seems at the first sight.

Having ceased reflecting on what you have eaten throughout the day, feeling guilty and stressed every time you realise you have eaten something you shouldn't have had, you will feel happier and more content. Allowing yourself occasional digressions yourself, knowing for sure that you have eaten everything or almost everything you should have eaten in order to stay healthy, yet having an opportunity to still afford a variety of food usual diets strictly forbid, will rid you of unnecessary stress.

True, you will still need all the willpower to follow even your own food schedule. But it will be much easier because you decide yourself everything you are going to eat for the day, as opposed to somebody deciding it for you. Thus, you can even treat yourself to pizza and chocolate, but no more than you, yourself, had allowed yourself the day before.

Having come to terms with yourself on what, how much of it and when you are going to eat, you will realise that staying fit and healthy has become much easier and less stressful.

Don't worry if at first, it goes wrong, which it certainly will. Some time is going to pass before you get fully accustomed to eating according to your personal Food Planner. Once you have, however, mark my words, your eating habits will improve by 180 degrees.

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Have you ever tried planning beforehand what you were going to eat? What are you thoughts on keeping your everyday diet to a schedule planned by yourself?
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