All great things begin with small but real steps until you finally reach the destination you are aiming for. And what better moment to make new steps - or at least decisions - than the New Year. The problem with New Year’s Resolutions, decisions, steps and so on is that instead of planning the journey that would get us to our desired destination, we already want to be at the destination in 1 or 2 days since we have decided to make a certain change - and this can make things hard and not very pleasant.
But who’s to say you can’t enjoy the journey and have a little fun of your own?
Here’s a different perspective for you to consider: think of what you want to achieve, plan on how you want to get there and when, and then... just enjoy the journey! Stop making radical decisions that involve harsh measures and way too difficult approaches. Let’s take food related decisions for example: how many times have you decided you’ll change your diet? Yet somehow your habits don’t really change and you end up making the same "from now on I’m gonna eat healthier" decisions over and over again.
Are you tired? Good! It means now you are ready to make real changes in your diet that don’t involve the lack of food, or eating only salads, or even worse: a fruit per day. I mean, what is that? How could anyone leave without enjoying delicious foods? And who says that healthy foods can’t be delicious?
Don’t even get me started on the "counting calories" idiocy. You shouldn’t even waste your energy on counting calories, you should enjoy food, real food. If you eat real food, your body will recognize the compounds (vitamins, nutrients) in it and use it where needed – however if you eat a low calorie package food, with all the artificial colorants and additives, your body won’t know what to do with all those substances and will transform it into fat (regardless the package said it is low in cal). So, if you must choose between a banana that’s approx. 120 cal and a banana muffin you’ll find in the supermarket that may have only 100 cal, you make sure to choose the banana! Your body will know how to break down the nutrients and vitamins from a banana, however with the muffin you’ll be left with some fat you haven’t asked for on your thighs. So, yes, counting calories will help you get nowhere good.
How should you stick to your food related New Year’s resolution though?
Decide to eat healthier
Once you’ve done this make sure to avoid junk food or fast food and change your culinary choices. Find out what kind of food you enjoy and discover the healthy version of it.
Don’t quit on everything you enjoy at once
Don’t give up on everything you like to eat all of a sudden – this can shock your body and have a negative effect on you. Besides, chances are you will have a relapse that will discourage you regardless your great achievements so far.
Don’t count calories
As I have mentioned in the above, don’t count calories, instead choose healthy foods and real foods: such as vegetables, fruits, fish, soup, salads: shrimp, chicken, turkey. Asian food has lots of amazing food choices you can opt for. In fact, Asian food could be a wonderful alternative when trying to eat healthy. Sushi lovers know what I’m talking about! ☺
Enjoy the journey
When you are changing the way you eat, make sure to enjoy the journey that leads to a better diet. Experiment with food, get informed about the best way you could mix and match different types of foods.
Adapt the healthy food recipes to your taste
After you know your way with healthier versions of food and have plenty of recipes to try out, make sure to adapt these healthy food recipes to your taste. Doing so, you’ll enjoy the food better and this way you’ll want to eat it more often. Healthy food should taste good!
Create a foundation for a healthy lifestyle
Once eating healthy has become natural to you, it’s safe to say it has become a habit. And, healthy eating habits create a wonderful foundation for a healthier lifestyle.
Allow yourself a "treat" from the past every now and then
As long as the foundation is right, allowing yourself to eat something you really liked but isn’t so healthy (and now you know it) isn’t all that bad. With a healthy foundation, a tiny "treat" will not destroy the progress you have done so far. Besides, chances are you won’t even fill the need to have the "old treats" as time goes by and your eating habits change.
Find a good restaurant that serves healthier food
Not all restaurants are bad. Some restaurants should be avoided at all times, but some can actually have not only delicious but healthy food options as well. Asian restaurants often make for a good restaurant choice when in need to dine out. Eating healthy should not stop you from socializing and enjoying dining out when a special event occurs or just don’t feel like cooking.
Be proud of your achievements
You have made it. Experimenting with food made the journey fun, you have learned new tricks when it comes to food, you know how to make healthy food delicious in a healthy way (obviously)... so now you are at your destination. Congratulations! Your New Year’s Resolution finally makes sense and you are not frustrated.
Bring it on! It looks like it’s going to be a successful year! ☺
What’s your opinion on this? How do you fulfill your food related New Year’s Resolution? We would love to hear about it, so please share with us!