With the start of a New Year, many people make resolutions around improving their diet, health and fitness. The New Year is a great time to plan to get more healthy and active particularly if you are feeling a little repentant about your alcohol and food intake over the Christmas period and your clothes are feeling a little tight around the waist.
But before you embark on a detox program or the latest new diet or weight loss supplement which promises to deliver spectacular results for minimal effort, please take a moment to read the following:-
It won't work. It doesn't matter whether it's a detox pill, a detox tea or a super duper fat blasting supplement – it won't work. Detox programs, diets, pills, shakes, meal replacements – they are all a rip off and they don't work. I am sorry to say that there are no magic pills or meal replacements or detox programs that will make you feel great right now or long term. The fact of the matter is that there is no short cut to sustainable weight management, improved immunity, better health, energy and wellbeing.
That being said, the good news is that anyone can embark on the road to improving their health and nutrition and achieve real, lasting health and fitness results. The key lies not in depriving yourself of what you enjoy but in learning how to eat the right foods which will nourish your body and protect you from illness and chronic diseases. By eating well and learning what foods your body needs to function at its best, diets and fixating on losing weight will cease to be an issue. Eat the food your body needs to operate at its optimal level, and the benefits just keep coming - robust immunity, energy, health, physical and mental wellbeing, weight loss and weight stabilisation and never having to worry about dieting or scales again.
So if you want to make a New Year’s resolution around your diet and health, instead of starting a new diet or detox program, resolve to learn more about the foods your body needs to function well. Here are a few tips to get you started on your path of eating well to be well:-
- Eat more vegetables – half your dinner plate should be made up of vegetables. This is because vegetables are packed with vitamins, minerals, fibre and phytonutrients which are vital for your body to function well, maintain a stable weight and to protect you from chronic disease such as Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and many forms of cancer. 90% of Australians don’t eat enough vegetables.
- Never drink soft drinks, even the diet variety. There is no nutritional value in soft drinks, in fact they are actually harmful. Full of empty calories, which quickly turn to fat, sugar has now been proven to be a major contributor to obesity, cardiovascular disease, inflammation, Type 2 diabetes and some cancers.
- Drink more water – at least 8 (250ml) glasses of water each day. This will keep you well hydrated and will maintain the balance of body fluids, control kilojoules, reduce fatigue, invigorate the skin, and help maintain normal kidney and bowel function.
- Replace refined carbohydrates such as white bread, pasta and rice with complex carbohydrates such as whole grains (and vegetables) which are important as a fuel for the brain and cells and are considered “protein-sparing”, preventing the breakdown of proteins in the muscles, heart and liver into amino acids and ultimately glucose, as fuel. Good sources include: whole oats, quinoa, brown rice, rye, barley, whole wheat/spelt.
- Try and cook meals from scratch using fresh vegetables, herbs, spices and good quality protein.
- Eat mindfully. Eat slowly, chew your food well. Eating should be an enjoyable experience, food is one of the big pleasures in life, don’t gobble down your meals. Savour your food and allow your body the time to digest it properly.
If you need to talk to someone about your diet and health and are really confused about what you should and shouldn't be eating, Alimentary has one on one consultations available in South Melbourne.