“Eat your fruits and veggies and make good choices!” – Your Mom
Tips & Tricks
Perhaps you are looking for a few tips on how to gain energy, lose weight, get better sleep or just be healthier. Below are some tips that helped past participants along the way, and is sound advice from health care practitioners.
- Eat more fruits and vegetables: The USDA recommends eating five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Not sure how much is a serving? Half a cup is a generally an accepted serving. Or just try eating all the colors of the rainbow or making at least half of every meal fruits and vegetables.
- Avoid ingredients in labels you can’t pronounce or sound chemical/fake
- Research nutrient dense foods which keep you fuller longer. For example, go for the Greek yogurt instead of regular yogurt
- Be patient for the win. Changing your diet, your tastebuds and your brain takes time, usually 28-40 days. You need to rewire the hard drive of your brain so your cravings for certain foods like sugar begins to lessen and finally goes away. As you rewire these changes, your brain will begin to crave the healthy food that you are fueling it with.
- Choose what you think is best for you!
- There are lots of credible sources out there to help you in your journey, such as the Produce for Better Health and the American Heart Association
What About Alcohol?
- Restrictive programs lead people to fail because of just that – they are too restrictive. It is likely you will drink alcohol in your journey to better health, particularly since the holiday season is upon us. If you find yourself in a situation where you will drink alcohol, go with clear: vodka or gin with soda water and a lime are best. Avoid the sugary mixers (Coke, cranberry juice, orange juice, syrups). Lighter beer is better than regular or darker beer but it might make you feel a bloat you won’t feel with clear liquor
- And most of all, take this chance to have fun, learn what works and what doesn’t. This is a lifestyle, not a diet; a marathon, not a sprint. Go slow and enjoy the good changes you will experience!
There are many resources for healthy recipes for every type of lifestyle and every person’s tastebuds. Check out these delicious recipes, courtesy of HEB. If you do not have an HEB near you, all ingredients are easy to substitute with what is available to you. You can also easily remove the bread and tortilla options for less carb/less processed. Bon Appétit!
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CLEAN EATING TIPS
It can be time consuming to review all the science and find the best information for weight loss, better sleep, food selection and more. Here are some tips and tricks and sound advice provided by health care practitioners.
Be patient for the win. Changing your diet, your tastebuds and your brain takes time, usually 28-40 days. You need to rewire the hard drive of your brain so your cravings for certain foods like sugar begins to lessen and finally goes away. As you rewire these changes, your brain will begin to crave the healthy food that you are fueling it with.
Clean eating tips
- Drink a lot of water – sometimes you are thirsty and not hungry.
- Include lean proteins in your menus – seafood, turkey, chicken, etc. Again…serving size matters. Try not to exceed a 4 oz serving.
- Include other animal proteins in moderation if it fits your lifestyle – red meat, pork
- If it came from the ground or had a mother, it fits the “eating clean” bill
- Limit processed foods entirely, or as much as possible – anything that is not in its natural form. Example: Chicken nuggets, not the best choice…select skinless chicken instead
- Refined sugars and carbs can quickly derail or healthy eating progress. Limit things like sweets, cakes, breads, etc.
- Whole grains matter. Whole grains are rich in fiber and other nutrients good for heart health. Be sure to choose whole grains like brown rice and whole wheat pasta.
- MAKE HEALTHY SWAPS – Although nothing is off limits, sometimes it helps to make better choices. Choose brown rice over white rice or unsweetened almond/oat/soy “milk” over whole milk.
- Is it off limits? No food needs to be off limits if you make better choices. Restrictive programs can lead to failure because they are just that – too restrictive.
- Can I still eat dairy or butter? Yes, in moderation. Decide what you need dairy for and ask yourself is there a substitution. For example can you use avocado instead or plain unsweetened Greek yogurt instead of sour cream. If you do choose dairy like butter choose a “whole food” like butter versus a margarine product with preservatives an artificial ingredients.
- Everything in moderation. You may still need a sweet snack to curb that sugar craving, but 3 Hershey’s kisses are better than a full-size candy bar. The same goes for pizza – 1-2 pieces is a serving.