6 things to START doing
A few years ago I would never have thought it was possible to feel as awesome as I do now. Yes, I still have some weight to lose but this way of eating has given me so much already in terms of even moods, great skin, stable blood sugar, high energy levels, control over my eating and an almost invincible immune system. That is why I so passionately share what I have learned – I want you to feel awesome too! In this post I list what you can START doing to help you on your way.
(1) Start a long-lasting love affair with fat
No, I am not asking you to fall in love with your love handles, double chin or thunder thighs. I am talking about the kind that you eat. Do whatever reading, research and therapy you need to do to get over your fat phobia. This is a relationship that really is worth working on. Your body, mind and soul will be very happy you put in the effort as all 3 will benefit immensely if you do. Fat is essential to our bodies and our brains. Fat has healing and immune boosting properties . Fat is what helps us to feel nourished and satiated. Make sure that you are choosing healthy fats such as olive oil, butter, coconut oil, nuts, avocados and olives. Stay away from margarines, vegetable oils and shortenings – they are poison. Go here for more info.
(2) Start asking for what you want
If you don’t ask, you don’t get. Therefore, when eating out in restaurants, don’t be shy to ask for low carb vegetable/salad alternatives instead of the usual “chips, rice or baked potato”. Even if it is not on the menu, most restaurants are willing to oblige. The more people who ask, the more pressure for them to start offering it. Oh and grow a thick skin – people are going to think you are seriously weird when you ask for a low carb veg but with an extra serving of butter on the side. Also , let your friends and family know why you are eating this way. Spread the news and get them on the bandwagon as well – it does make life easier.
(3) Start focusing on quality rather than quantity
If you knew how most of our food is farmed and processed, you would get a huge shock. Battery chickens and feedlot cattle are pumped full of hormones and antibiotics. They are confined in squalor and fed on grains. This unnatural environment and diet makes them sick and fat (yes, grains make animals fat too). Whenever possible, opt for free-range, grass-fed meat, poultry, eggs and organic fruit and vegetables . Grow your own veggie garden, keep a couple of egg-laying hens or get your produce directly from the farmer or from farmer’s markets. You shouldn’t be eating huge amounts of protein anyway so rather focus on the quality. I promise you, eating this way actually becomes cheaper as there will be far fewer trips to the doctor and less need for medications.
(4) Start thinking “lifestyle” instead of “quick-fix”
A ‘quick-fix diet’ is a journey you embark on with high hopes of quickly getting you from A to B (Fat to Thin). But most of the time you don’t enjoy the ride and then when you are almost there, the car suddenly goes into reverse and you head back to A. Urgh – how utterly depressing! Start thinking about this way of eating (HFLC or Paleo/Primal) as a lifestyle which you will adopt and continue with for the rest of your life. It is something you will do because it is easy, nutritious, satiating and delicious. It is what your body has been designed to eat. You will be motivated to continue because you feel better, younger, healthier, slimmer and more energetic. It is not a quick fix – it’s a way of life.
(5) Start planning and preparing
Being prepared, organised and planning in advance truly is the key to success with this way of eating. Keep your fridge well stocked and cook in advance and freeze. Have non-perishable snacks on hand such as nuts, biltong, tins of tuna, salmon and pilchards. Eradicate all junk food from the house (except for some good quality dark chocolate). When you go to the shops make sure there is enough in your trolley for a few meals – just in case you can’t get to the grocery store the next day. Cook a little extra at supper to have as lunch the next day. Hearty soups and stews are brilliant for the cold winter months and keep lots of salad ingredients for the summer. Being prepared will help you to avoid the fast food outlets and processed junk food.
(6) Start observing and be present in every situation
Often we do things or eat certain foods purely out of habit. Or maybe we have triggers in our environment which derail our efforts. Do you rush for the chocolate when your kids are stressing you out? Do you reach for that beer/glass of wine the moment you step through your front door from work? Do you find it hard to imagine your afternoon cuppa without the rusk to dunk into it? The first step to changing bad habits is being aware of them. Once you have the awareness you can put strategies in place to help you manage your triggers. Be present and aware in EVERY moment of your life. Ask yourself the question, “Is this [behaviour or food item] going to help me achieve awesome health and wellbeing?” and if the answer is “No”, then don’t do it or try not to do it as much. Rather work on creating new habits and behaviours that will help you achieve your goals.
“Be present as the watcher of your mind – of your thoughts and emotions as well as your reactions in various situations. Be at least as interested in your reactions as in the situation or person that causes you to react.” – Eckhart Tolle