Many of us can relate to the resolution maker who vows to get healthy and start eating right. Typically, this means going on some sort of restrictive diet–maybe a meal plan that’s all over the news or Facebook–and going full steam ahead for a few weeks before the inevitable burn-out sets in. Changing our habits is never easy, but there are ways soften the blow.
Make a choice to change your habits long-term, not just for the duration of a diet
The term “diet” sends shivers up the spine of many people, and for good reason. It’s become synonymous with failure, and who wants to be set up to fail? Instead, focus on implementing small changes into your daily routine over the long term. Phase out diet soda, for example, and then when you’re comfortable with that, switch from whole milk to skim. Smaller changes over the long term won’t be as shocking to your routine and you’ll be more likely to keep them up.
Utilize social media
Maybe you join a Facebook Group made up of close friends who also want to eat better. Maybe you participate in a Twitter chat once a week focused on cooking healthy meals for a family. Maybe you pin healthy recipes from Pinterest, so you can reference them whenever you like (we’ve got some great ones on our boards). Whatever your social media platform of choice, there are ways for you to find like-minded people and tips to help you with your goal.
Get your family involved
It’s really hard to make changes to your diet when you’re cooking one way for yourself, and another way for your family. Get everyone on board and engaged. Small children love to help in the kitchen, enlist their help in cooking new things and they might just be more likely to follow along with your new habits.
Make it simple
Instead of counting calories, or carbs, why not just try to eat whole, none-processed foods more often? If it’s fresh, colorful, and comes with a very short “ingredients” list, chances are it’s better for you than anything out of a box.
Invest in a crock pot
If you don’t already have one…run, don’t walk to the nearest store and pick one up! There is no easier way to throw together simple, healthy ingredients for a healthy meal. A whole world dedicated to crock pot recipes awaits you on the web (check out the Crockin’ Girls, for example); millions of people swear by this easy-to-use device. Even I can use one, and I’m not a great cook.
If you veer off course, don’t jump ship
One bad night in front of the TV with a pint of ice cream does not ruin all of your work. It’s not an excuse to then go finish off the leftover holiday candy. Start over fresh the next day. Remember you’re in this for the long-term, and every small change for the better helps!
What are your favorite ways to eat better?