By Molly Patrick
Jul 29, 2014,
Last week I gave you part one of how to make healthy eating stick.
This week I give you part two on how to make healthy eating part of your daily routine. Eating healthy can feel like a Debbie Downer, especially if you only do it sporadically.
Just like most things, the more often you eat healthy, the more you’ll want to eat healthy.
If you start eating a huge green salad everyday, eventually your body will start to crave a huge green salad.
If you’ve gone two weeks without raw greens in your mouth, you likely won’t feel the urge to nosh on bunny food.
So, let’s get your mind, body and mouth ready to crave healthy, cell dancing, disease fighting, antioxidant building, meals. Yes?
BUT before I swan dive in, I want to talk to you about something.
Do you ever get freaked out by things that probably shouldn’t be a big deal?
For example, I think it’s weird that people have to lay down and sleep for so many hours each night. We all walk around and do our things during the day and then at night we do our little bedtime routines and tuck in for the night.
It’s not strange to me if I don’t think about it for too long, but if I really ponder, it’s fucking bizarre.
I also get freaked out that we all have to keep eating throughout the day, that our skin is waterproof, by the concept of gravity, by the fact that I’m human, by the fact that myself and everyone I know and love will die one day, and then what the hell happens?
This one really freaks me out.
Death. It’s just…. accepted, but wtf?
I have to intentionally fill my head with pygmy horses when I get too deep into this thought.
Also, the fact that there are billions of galaxies in the Universe is enough to make me a little nauseous.
These are just a few of the reasons why I never took LSD.
Do you ever have thoughts like these? Talk to me in the comments below. Let’s find each other.
Now I want to talk about something that is very much in my comfort zone. Ways to make healthy eating stick. That I can handle.
The fact that I’ll never be able to sniff my forehead with my own nose? Not so much.
More ways to make healthy eating part of your routine:
1) Drink plenty of water
Our body sometimes confuses thirst for hunger.
If you feel hungry, but you ate not long ago, drink a glass of water and wait 15 minutes. This could be all you need to feel satisfied. Also, did you know that when we’re thirsty, we’re already dehydrated?
Here’s a calculation that I want you to do. This will give you an idea about how much water you should be drinking everyday.
Take your body weight in pounds, divide that by two and that’s how much water in ounces you need to drink each day.
For example, I weigh 133 pounds, so I would divide that by 2 to get 66.5. So, my body needs about 66.5 ounces of water everyday. Call it 70 (or 2 liters) and pass me the agua.
After calculating your number, measure out how much that actually is and pick out a container or a glass and figure out how many of those you must drink throughout the day.
Then you can keep track to make sure you’re perfectly hydrated.
2) Re-think your snacks
Like I mentioned last week, snacking is an awesome thing.
Here’s the problem, most of us associate snacking with food items that can be purchased at a gas station. I want you to rewire your brain when it comes to snacking.
Snacking should be done because it keeps you fueled throughout the day, not because it’s an excuse to load up on salt, sugar and fat (I say that with a bundle of love).
Instead of chips, choose veggies and hummus. Choose healthy fat snacks instead of empty calories. Choose nutrient dense food instead of nutrient void food. Try the recipe below instead of cheese from a can (although, I did have a love affair with cheese from a can the summer that I worked in a Salmon packing factory in Alaska.)
Basically, I want you to think of EVERYTHING you put in your mouth as having one of two purposes:
1) To make it easy for your body to thrive.
2) To make it difficult for your body to thrive.
Choose the first.
3) Clean out your fridge
Toss out the expired condiments, wipe up any spills, throw out the leftovers that you should eat, but won’t. Make your fridge a pure delight to open and I guarantee that you’ll open it more often and eat out less.
4) Now that your fridge is clean, start buying healthy ingredients
If you don’t buy cookies, cake, potato chips, etc., you won’t be able to grab for them when you’re hungry.
Instead, stock up on healthy ingredients.
5) Set aside one day each week that you abstain
Tell me I can’t have something for the rest of my life and I’ll slap you.
Tell me to skip processed sugar for one day? I’ll do it. No problem.
Stopping something forever is scary and daunting and for most of us, it brings on panic attacks and depression.
Instead, choose one day of the week and have it be a ‘no’ day. It could be no meat, no dairy, no processed food, no alcohol, no negative self talk, no soda, no crack, whatever.
It could also be a combination of things.
I want you to take a look at your current routine and habits and choose the ones that are no longer serving you. Now pick one day out of the week and play around with abstaining from it on this day each week.
Start there and see where it takes you.
6) Make sure your healthy food actually tastes good
This might sound super obvious, but if your healthy food tastes like cardboard, then you don’t stand a chance at making it a part of your everyday.
If you’re used to eating a lot of meat and dairy, then start with recipes that are in your comfort zone.
If you already eat pretty healthy, take it a step further and try recipes that are incredibly nutrient dense, but also taste really good.
Here’s a recipe for a super yummy and totally healthy dish that you’ll want to make again and again.
- 2 cups cooked garbanzo beans aka chickpeas, 430g
- 1/4 cup red onion 35g, diced
- 1/4 cup grated carrot 30g
- 1/2 cup celery 50g, chopped
- 2 teaspoons yellow mustard 15g
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice 15ml
- 5 turns fresh black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- Place the garbanzo beans in a medium-sized bowl and mash them with a fork. You don’t have to mash them completely. If some garbanzo beans are left whole, it’s totally fine.
- Add the red onion, carrot, celery, yellow mustard, lemon juice, black pepper and sea salt.
- Stir until all of the ingredients are combined.
- Serve on toasted sprouted grain bread or on cucumber rounds as a snack or appetizer. You can also put it in a sprouted grain tortilla or blanched collard leaf with some mixed greens and avocado and make a crazy delicious wrap.