Estimated reading time: 3 minute(s)
Are you interested in changing your life? Or, Have you already started but need extra motivation to learn how to simplify things to keep going? Everything is easier when your mind is clear, and that includes a healthy lifestyle. So, here is a list of 7 basic tips to guide you through the process.
These short but important tips will both inspire you and give you that little nudge to start eating healthier. Remember: the way to living a healthier, more simplistic, and positive life is to be determined, disciplined, and honest with yourself.
Say Goodbye to Dieting
Don’t think of this new beginning as a diet. The word “diet” has become associated with negative behavior. The strict meaning of the word refers to the amount of food we eat during a 24 hour period. Oftentimes, it’s been used to refer to trendy diets where food intake is reduced, which is unnatural. We need to forget everything that’s traditionally associated with “being on a diet”.
A correct diet goes far beyond counting calories. It’s about getting the most nutritional value out of the foods we choose to eat like, fats from meat or fish. We should also be aware that we don’t need carbohydrates to get energy but rather the base of our food pyramid should include seeds and nuts.
What makes something a lifestyle? Simply put, it’s when we develop and practice a set of behaviors and habits, such as eating, on a daily basis. Leading a natural and healthy life in regards to eating means going back to the way our ancestors ate and reconnecting with our roots.
Of course, a healthy lifestyle doesn’t just include eating relatively healthy. It’s about learning to listen to our bodies, knowing what feels best and realizing when something doesn’t make us feel good or when we might need an extra dose of something particular. Needless to say, this is all useless if afterward we stay seated all day, or don’t sleep the hours our bodies need to recover and reenergize their vital functions.
Healthy body, healthy mind, healthy life. These 3 things go hand in hand. Stress and problems ruin every attempt to be well. Therefore, it’s vital that we find time to dedicate to ourselves so we can have a healthier balance. When something upsets you, don’t let it fester, focus on a solution, and not the problem. Stress is a reason for many people’s poor health, that’s why things like yoga and other such routines can be so helpful.
Focus Your Energy on The Reward Not The Sacrifices
If you decide to start this lifestyle with the sole purpose of losing weight then, I’m sad to say, you won’t get far. This is because you don’t understand the process and the scientific reasons behind a Paleo life. Make sure that you’re doing this for the right reasons, improving our overall health and well-being. As I’ve said before, it’s not about counting calories, or obsessing over food and living in constant struggle. When you find the foods that best suit you, eating healthy will be a blessing.
Put yourself first! Take moments for yourself to do things that you enjoy and forget about your responsibilities or work problems for a while. Also, if you get a craving one day for something you wouldn’t usually eat, treat yourself. Nothing negative will happen if you sit down to rest a little, or dedicate time to an activity that you love but, might not consider productive. In fact, the exact opposite will happen, your mind will thank you!
Know That There Will Always Be Ups and Downs
Any change is a challenge. If you know that you cannot live without pizza or bread, adjust this lifestyle to your needs so that you can deal with the ups and downs effectively. If at any point you fall off the bandwagon, get back up, dust yourself off, and move on with no regrets.
Nobody is perfect. One day you might not eat the healthiest, another day you might decide to be a couch potato, and another day you might simply feel a bit depressed. It’s totally natural and we should allow ourselves to have bad days. What’s important is that you remember it’s a temporary feeling, and don’t allow yourself to get stuck. Simple enough right? However, this is something we need to train ourselves to do and put into practice. This means talking to our brain and saying, “okay, so today we don’t feel well, we’re not motivated, no worries! But tomorrow, tomorrow will be a great day”.
“Natural” isn’t always healthy: Check the ingredients.
There are such things as natural brownies, icecreams, and truffles… but that doesn’t mean you should base your diet around them. These foods have only come into existence to face the reality of the world we live in and to help us feel less guilty and happier when we eat them. Our diet should be as basic as possible: meats, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and healthy fats, just like our ancestors.
In any case, if you want to eat something that falls outside of that list, always try to make it at home yourself. That way you can control how much and what goes into each dish. The problem with buying supposedly healthy pre-made foods like, cookies or biscuits is that they’re usually loaded with sugars. Note: just because a product is considered organic in origin doesn’t mean that the process to shelf it hasn’t been altered with chemicals.
Tailor These Tips to You
A healthy lifestyle adapts to your needs if you want it to. Nothing in life has to be so strict. If you feel like dairy has nutritional benefits, eat them. Or, if you need to substitute quinoa in for a carbohydrate that usually goes with a certain dish, do it. Listen to your body and adapt and modify everything for it, without forcing yourself to any particular thing.
It’s common for many people to follow one diet or another, or do a sport because someone recommended it or they read it somewhere. Always check if it’s the best for you. If you see good results and it makes you feel good, keep it up, if not, stop.
A Long-Distance Race
Think of the changes you are going to make as a permanent change, this will help you look a little further into the future. Change your mindset and see this process as a great journey towards a healthier life. You’re not going to adopt new habits from one day to the next, it’s impossible! So don’t expect all of this to happen overnight, if you do, you’ll just become frustrated, lose motivation, and stop progressing forward.