Lifestyle change is nothing more than replacing old habits with new ones.
Weight loss, fitness, and health programs all require three components to be successful… nutritional diet, exercise, and lifestyle. For most people in the current everyday world, diet and exercise alone do not have a chance to prevail without change to lifestyle.
Dietary habits: Changing dietary habits does not necessarily mean to eat less. It is more a case of changing what, when, and how you eat.
- Eating at home as much as possible gives you total control over planning, timing, and nutrition value.
- Small nutritional meals, up to six times a day at regular intervals, is much better for the metabolism than the usual three meal a day routine.
- White meat rather than red and processed meats will lower fat intake as well as cholesterol, and lessen risks of cardiovascular disease.
- Artificial sweeteners… no, sugar… no, use honey as a sweetener.
- If you must eat bread, go for the whole wheat or whole grain varieties.
- Snack only on nutritious treats such as dried fruits, etc. Cut back on anything processed with fats (trans or otherwise).
- Eggs are good for you, get into the habit of poached or boiled instead of fried or scrambled in oil or butter… (or bacon fat?).
- Water, and plenty of it. The kidneys need water to function properly, if they don’t get it, the liver tries to help out, lessening its ability to do its own job properly.
Exercise habits: In the case of dietary change, you already eat… your just changing what you eat. Starting an exercise program is a little different. You are adding a new element into your daily routine, an element that requires a time slot.
- Be prepared for big changes to your daily life. Start a habit of changing habits.
- Make a conscious effort to think about physical activity as just another part of your every day life.
- To accommodate this new time slot, your daily schedule may need considerable adjustments.
- Look for little yet obvious habits that can easily be changed… choice of stairs over escalator, etc.
- Choose to stand rather than sitting when the opportunity presents itself. Stand to tie up your shoelaces.
- Taking a walk after a meal will use up a little of the sugar in your blood and aids digestion. If you dine out, cab it there and walk home if feasible.
Note: For any weight loss or fitness program result to be lasting, all changes to habits and lifestyle must be permanent, life long transformations. To be the most effective, you will need more lifestyle adjustments than what was catalogued here, but this list should be a good place for most people to start from.