Since problems with a person being overweight include diabetes and heart disease, it is vital that we make changes in our lifestyles to reverse this trend. Traditionally, when a person makes the decision to lose weight, it is typically starting a diet. If exercise is included, a membership to a gym is often purchased.
These are all good plans. However, they fail so often because it is too much drastic change at one time. Anybody can tough it out for awhile. But changing too many old habits all at once is overwhelming. Also, to get through a diet, a person may have thoughts of how good the forbidden foods will taste once the weight is lost.
If you’ve tried and failed and are afraid starting another diet will lead to more failure, here are some easy lifestyle changes you can make to help you get ready to live healthier and lose weight.
As our obsession with television, computers, and video games have increased, our time spent in physical activity has decreased. Fortunately, fitness shows by health gurus like Jack LaLanne have been steadily increasing over the years. Wii fitness programs are the newest addition to exercise videos while seeming like a game. Although exercising along with these programs is a great step to better health, more is needed.
We must restrict television time to 1 to 2 hours a day. It is far too easy to hear something that catches interest on the TV and sit down to watch…just for a little bit. An hour later you’re still sitting and got nothing done. How many times have you been watching a favorite program and been influenced to eat because you saw a food commercial? Turn off the tube and use the time to organize the closet, go for a walk, garden, or do anything that gets you moving.
Processed Convenience Foods
Processed foods are loaded with fat, salt, and sugars. Additionally, the processing often destroys a large amount of nutrients and enzymes. Without vital enzymes we cannot digest our food and make use of the nutrients we need. When our bodies are not getting the nutrients we need, we start craving more food and overeat. Pay attention to how much processed food you are buying because it is convenient to throw into the microwave.
Modern microwaves are better at cooking a wide variety of foods. Some even have browning elements. Microwave cookware has also evolved solving the old problem of having parts of the food hard and parts uncooked. It is possible to cook fresh foods from all food groups in the microwave.
Our family lives are rushed and stressed. Eating habits and mealtimes have deteriorated and the consumption of processed convenience foods have increased. In the last decade or two, we have learned just how important traditional family routines are. Commit to making time in your schedule so you can gather as a family during mealtimes. Eating together gives families an opportunity to talk about their days and model to children how to eat more slowly and chew their food.
Choose two or three days a month to prepare snacks and meals ahead of time. Make fruit and veggie choices convenient to access and ready to eat in Ziploc baggies (to go on the run) or plastic containers. Cereals like Frosted Mini-Wheats, crackers, pretzels, nuts and raisins can be packaged in baggies (together or separately) for easy to go snacks. Try mixing meatloaf recipes, making hamburger patties, casseroles, and trays of enchiladas and freezing them raw. A main meal can easily be popped into the oven or microwave on busy days.
Lifestyle changes are difficult to make. People like to keep doing things that are familiar to them. It’s safe. If you make changes gradually, just one at a time, and practice the new habit consistently, you will find you are living a different lifestyle in a year’s time.