Some people just appear to have life completely under control. Effortlessly thin, when presented with a novel of tempting options, they gracefully order ‘mixed green salad with dressing on the side…and water.’ Figures. Yet, when it comes your turn to order, the words ‘fettuccini alfredo with extra sauce, not on the side…and a diet coke’ leap out of your mouth and onto the waiter’s pad with reckless abandon.
How does that happen? How do some people avoid the temptations of food so effortlessly? The people that appear to have life under control seem that way because they know that consistent dedication to healthy eating behaviors make a huge difference in their everyday lives. The results of their commitment and will power behind the scenes show up in these public situations. If your goal is to be gracefully under control in high pressure situations, and to maintain your weight with a healthy lifestyle, start with these five healthy eating behaviors.
Break the Fast!
That is exactly what breakfast is. When your body does not receive fuel for an extended period of time, it gets worried and basically goes into ‘sleep mode’. Your body adjusts by using less energy, thus slowing down your metabolism. Reassure your body every morning, and give your body the all clear to kick that metabolism into high gear. Breaking that fast will get your metabolism rolling and help you to avoid starvation induced bad decisions as the day goes on.
It’s not just for elementary school. Snacks are an essential healthy eating behavior. Over the course of the day, you want to keep your body consistently fueled, therefore keeping your mind consistently happy. Eating three squares just won’t cut it. Keep healthy options like granola bars, fruit, almonds, or yogurt on hand at all times. Every 2-3 hours reward yourself with a 100-200 calorie snack. You will feel energized and satisfied throughout the day, therefore decreasing the urge to binge at dinner time.
How Much is Too Much?
When it comes to anything you consume, portion control is critical. Almonds are an extremely healthy snack, but if you eat the entire jar you may have just consumed about 500 calories! For foods that don’t come in portion controlled packaging (like almonds), ‘pre-portion’ them at home. Using sandwich bags and various sized containers will prevent you from crossing the line. At home, try using smaller plates or bowls instead of oversize dinner plates. Visually, you can fill the small plate up, giving the illusion of piles of food. And finally, eat slowly. Put your fork down in between bites and you might just realize you are full!
What You See is What You Get
Pretty cut and dry. If it’s not there, you probably will not eat it. Never go grocery shopping hungry, stick to your list, and steer clear of dangerous aisles. Load up on fruits, veggies, and healthy snacks. Pre-plan your dinners and buy only what you will need to prepare them. When you get home, you will have everything you need to stick to your plan.
There’s no denying it takes careful planning and stringent willpower to eat healthfully each and every day. If you’re accomplishing your goals, reward yourself with your favorite treat! Allowing yourself an appropriate portion size of a food that you love can give you the strength you need to go on and prevent you from resenting all the rules of your healthy lifestyle.
Stick to these five healthy eating behaviors and you might just find yourself becoming one of those people that seem to have everything under control. You might find yourself leading a healthy lifestyle, maintaining your weight, and achieving a sense of balance in your life. And then, next time you are presented with a high pressure food situation, you might just find yourself gracefully choosing the mixed green salad with dressing on the side…and water.