7 Tips to Spring Clean Your Diet

Eating a healthy diet after bariatric surgery is essential for long-term weight loss success. However, with cold winter weather and COVID-19 forcing everyone indoors, you may have slipped into old, unhealthy eating routines. If your weight loss has plateaued or you gained weight this winter, your food choices may be the culprit.

With winter coming to an end, you may be gearing up for spring cleaning. Now is a great time to clean up your eating habits as well. The following tips can help you get back on track with your bariatric diet:

  1. Clean out your fridge and cabinets. It’s easy to overindulge or make poor food choices when you store them in your fridge or pantry. Removing junk foods and replacing them with healthy options can help you eliminate the temptation. If you don’t like the idea of throwing away food, consider giving it away to friends and family.
  2. Keep up with your hydration. Dehydration is the leading cause of rehospitalization after bariatric surgery. During cold weather months, you may have opted for hot chocolate, coffee, or tea to keep you warm rather than reaching for your water. Unfortunately, caffeinated beverages are diuretics, and sugary drinks are empty calories. Water is hydrating, zero calories, and can help you feel full for longer.
  3. Cook at home. Between the pandemic and gloomy winter weather, you may have had limited energy for cooking. While ordering takeout or heating a microwave meal may sound appealing, they often come with excessive calories, fat, and sodium. Cooking healthy meals at home allows you to know the exact nutritional information of what you’re eating.
  4. Opt for colorful foods. Colorful foods make your meals more visually interesting, and they are usually healthy choices. Fruits and vegetables can brighten up your plate, as well as provide essential vitamins, fiber, and other nutrients. For example, if you’re tired of ho-hum scrambled eggs for breakfast, you can incorporate bell peppers and spinach to add flavor and aesthetic appeal.
  5. Avoid added sugars. It’s easy to identify sugar-heavy drinks and snacks, but many pre-packaged products include added sugars as well. While a food may have a low amount of naturally occurring sugar, the manufacturer may have added a significant amount of sugar during the packaging process. Reading labels can help you understand exactly how much sugar you’re eating. You can eliminate the confusion altogether by reaching for raw fruits when you’re craving something sweet.
  6. Eat more raw foods. It may sound odd, but scientific studies have shown that cooked foods often contain more calories than their raw counterparts. When you cook foods, you’re aiding in the process of breaking them down. Your body has to do less work to obtain the nutrients, so you burn fewer calories during digestion.
  7. Stop grazing. You may think that a bite of a cookie, one cheesy French fry, or a sip of a sugary milkshake aren’t a big deal. However, these snacking habits add up over time without you noticing it. Not only that, but grazing is usually exclusive to unhealthy foods as well, as you may think a small taste won’t hurt. Practicing mindful eating helps you recognize when you’re truly hungry and when you’re full so that you don’t overeat.

The above tips can help you overhaul your diet for a healthier spring season. Leaving poor eating habits behind can reignite your weight loss efforts and help you achieve your goals. If you’re struggling to lose stubborn weight despite cleaning up your diet, bariatric surgery may be right for you. Contact us to learn more.

 

5 Benefits of Water Workouts After Bariatric Surgery

Exercise is an integral component to weight loss success after bariatric surgery. However, excess weight can make working out painful, if not impossible. As you begin to lose weight, workouts will become easier. In the early months after surgery, though, water workouts are a great option. Whether you decide to swim laps or join a water aerobics class, you can reap the following benefits from aquatic exercise:

  1. Joint support. Joints bear the brunt of your weight, and your knees may not be ready to handle jogging right away. Water mitigates this problem because the buoyancy supports your joints and reduces impact, which allows you to exercise without pain.
  2. Body resistance. Water provides full-body resistance while exercising compared to the zero resistance of moving through air. More resistance requires you to work harder to perform exercises, which makes your workout more effective. For example, walking in the pool will burn more calories and improve cardiovascular stamina better than walking on land.
  3. Family time. You may feel guilty about exercising if it cuts into family time. While your health is a top priority, your family is also important. They are a critical component of your support network as you progress through your weight loss journey. Working out in the pool can be family time as well as exercise, so you aren’t sacrificing either.
  4. Less sweaty. Cardio workouts, especially during the warmer months, often leave you hot and sweaty. While sweat isn’t a bad thing, overheating is a real concern as you begin exercising. The pool water helps keep you cool and sweat less so you aren’t dehydrating too quickly.
  5. Increased variety. Walking is a great place to start when you first begin exercising, but the weather doesn’t always allow you to enjoy a change in scenery. Whether it’s the temperature or inclement weather, mother nature can force you indoors for your workout. While walking on the treadmill is still great exercise, it can become a bit monotonous. The pool allows you to incorporate a variety of exercises to keep things fun and interesting.

Water Workout Ideas

Getting started is one of the most challenging parts of a workout. You may not know where to begin or what kinds of exercises you should do. While flexibility and range-of-motion may hinder you on land, the water’s bouncy opens several exercises that would otherwise be too difficult to perform. Consider incorporating some of the following exercises into your water aerobics routine:

  • Water walking. If your knees and ankles bother you while walking on land, walking in water is a great alternative. It provides resistance while reducing the strain on your joints.
  • Water squats. Squats are a great exercise, but joint pain may be a limiting factor for this workout as well. While the water does support much of your weight, you aren’t weightless. You’ll still build strength and stamina with water squats. Use the edge of the pool if you need to support your balance.
  • Flutter kicks. This aerobic water exercise engages the glutes, hip flexors, and core muscles. Cross your arms over the edge of the pool and use them as a rest for your chin. Extend your legs and let them float to the surface. With pointed toes, perform small, fast kicks using your entire leg.
  • Incorporate weights. If you find your water workouts are too easy, but your joints aren’t quite ready to work out on land, you can add weights to your pool workouts. You can add ankle or wrist weights to increase the resistance of the above exercises. Foam dumbbells are another great way to build strength.
  • Swimming/treading water. If you have good form, regular swimming is always an option if you don’t feel like piecing together a workout. Treading water burns calories as well.

Working out in the pool is a great option to help you expedite weight loss after bariatric surgery. If you’re not a strong swimmer yet, stick to the shallow end or use a floatation device to stay safe. Contact us to learn how bariatric surgery can help your reach your weight loss goals.

 

5 Surprising Benefits of Water After Bariatric Surgery

It’s common knowledge that water is vital for your health, but many of us reach for anything else to quench our thirst. Coffee, tea, soda, juice, and sports drinks are the typical go-to options, but they’re often counterproductive. Coffee, tea, and soda are all diuretics because they contain caffeine, which will ultimately dehydrate you.

The high sugar content of these drinks can also contribute to dehydration. When you introduce sugar into your bloodstream, your body needs more water to balance it. As a result, your brain sends out signals urging you to drink. If you don’t reach for water, the thirst cycle will continue.

The Importance of Water After Bariatric Surgery

Dehydration is the leading cause of rehospitalization after bariatric surgery. Many adults struggle to drink the recommended eight glasses of water per day, and this challenge increases after a bariatric procedure. You won’t be able to gulp down a bottle of water in one sitting due to your new anatomy. You will need to take frequent sips of water throughout the day to maintain adequate hydration.

However, water conveys several benefits beyond meeting basic health needs. Some of the greatest benefits of drinking more water include:

  1. Improved weight loss. The primary goal of bariatric surgery is to lose weight to improve your health. Drinking water can help expedite this goal for several reasons. For instance, many people often mistake thirst for hunger. They reach for a snack, which won’t solve the hydration issue. If you reach for water first, you may find your hunger was really thirst. You’ll also need to consume fewer calories after weight loss surgery, which makes water the superior beverage of choice. It has zero calories, which will help you avoid drinking empty calories.
  2. Reduced headaches and brain fog. Your body provides several subtle clues when you’re dehydrated. Feeling sluggish or irritable are early signs that you need more water. Given enough time, you’ll develop a headache from dehydration as well. Drinking enough water throughout the day can mitigate these issues, as well as boost your energy, focus, and mood.
  3. Constipation relief. Bariatric procedures alter or affect how your body digests food. Constipation is a possible side effect while you acclimate to these changes. While you can take fiber supplements or make dietary adjustments to alleviate constipation, your body needs adequate water to process food.
  4. Improved complexion. Air pollution, stress, or cosmetics can all create skin problems, and you can add dehydration to that list. Drinking enough water improves your skin’s elasticity, which means it’s less likely to crack. Cracks due to dehydration cause irritation and blemishes. While water can’t replace your skincare routine, it can make a notable difference in your skin’s appearance.
  5. Improved muscle strength and function. Regular exercise is critical for successful long term weight loss after bariatric surgery. However, muscle cramps can stop you in your tracks and dissuade you from committing to your workouts. One of the leading causes of muscle cramping is dehydration. Staying hydrated before and during your workout can prevent cramps, which will allow your muscles to function properly and improve in strength.

Staying hydrated is essential after bariatric surgery, and you will need to make a conscious effort to drink enough water throughout the day. If you need a boost of flavor, you can try adding lemon slices or infusing your water with fruit. Your doctor will give you specific advice on your dietary and hydration needs prior to your surgery, as well as answer any questions you may have. Contact us to learn more about bariatric surgery to achieve your weight loss goals.

 

3 Questions You May Have After Bariatric Surgery

You’re likely to have many questions for your doctor before surgery. Even so, you’ll likely develop new questions as you progress through your recovery. Some of the most common questions revolve around food, exercise, and recovery time. While your questions may seem like they have simple answers, that isn’t always the case. The following are some common questions that arise after bariatric surgery.

When Can I Drink Coffee Again?

The quick answer is at least 30 days, but it’s more complicated than that in practice. Caffeine is problematic for post-op bariatric patients as it can reduce nutrient absorption. Bariatric patients consume fewer nutrients through food as is, so it’s best to avoid anything that reduces this further. Caffeine is also dehydrating. Given that insufficient hydration is the most common reason for rehospitalization after surgery, it’s best to avoid caffeine during the first month post-op.

After 30 days, you will still need to be cautious when it comes to coffee. Most commercial coffee options are a poor choice for bariatric patients. They’re often packed with sugar, fat, and excessive calories. Some smart swaps for a healthier coffee include:

  • Using low-fat or non-fat creamer
  • Using skim milk or almond milk
  • Ordering a smaller size
  • Skipping the whipped topping and syrups

When Can I Go to the Gym?

Your doctor will likely tell you to exercise in the weeks leading up to your surgery. If you’re used to hitting the gym or working out at home, you’ll likely feel the itch to jump back into it after surgery. Of course, overdoing it is a significant concern while your incisions and body are still healing.

You should limit your exercise to walking the first month after bariatric surgery. The eventual goal should be 30 minutes of walking without stopping, but you can start in increments and build up your stamina.

Most doctors will green light going to the gym two to three months after surgery. However, stick with cardio machines at this stage, as lifting weights may cause injuries. The elliptical, stationary bike, and water aerobics (assuming your incisions are healed) are good options as they are low impact. Using a variety of machines can help prevent boredom as well.

You can begin light resistance training around four to six months after surgery. You will want to start slow and use low weights to build up your strength. You will also want to pay attention to the changes happening to your body, as weight loss can affect your balance and coordination.

You’ll be able to perform all regular weight training and cardio by 6-12 months post-op. Focus on increasing frequency before increasing intensity. As your strength and stamina improve, you’ll be able to push your body a little harder. After a year, you can increase the intensity for better strength gains. You’ll also be able to incorporate core exercises so long as your surgeon approves them.

What Can I Have for Snacks?

Diet is a huge component to weight loss success after bariatric surgery. As many bariatric recipes cater to meals, it can be challenging to find easy snack options. Some healthy snack ideas include:

  • Hummus with carrot sticks
  • Peanut butter with celery sticks
  • Low-calorie protein chips
  • Low fat cottage cheese or Greek yogurt with fruit
  • Deli meat roll-ups (you can add ingredients to the rolls for more flavor, such as thinly sliced apples or a bit of cheese)
  • Popcorn (with some caveats)

Popcorn is a tricky snack as it can be a low-calorie option, but most people don’t eat it that way. Butter, powdered cheese, and other toppings can quickly transform popcorn into a poor snack choice. Another thing to keep in mind is that popcorn expands in the stomach, which can lead to dumping syndrome. To avoid this, opt for a single serving, pre-packaged bag of popcorn without high-fat toppings.

Some snacks to avoid include:

  • Chips
  • Baked goods (i.e., donuts, muffins, cookies, etc.)
  • Sugary breakfast cereals
  • Poptarts and other sugary pastries
  • Spicy foods
  • Fried foods

A good rule of thumb when making diet and exercise choices is to ask yourself if it will help or hinder your long-term success. Bariatric surgery isn’t an overnight solution for weight loss, and it requires you to commit to a healthy lifestyle. For more information about the health benefits of bariatric surgery, contact us.

 

7 Tips to Prevent Weight Gain While Homeschooling

COVID-19 is forcing many parents into the role of teacher or assistant to the teacher. With many kids in homeschool and virtual school, parents are more sedentary than ever. Academia is an inherently stationary activity. While younger children can learn while being active, older students have challenging work that requires more sitting time. Without a teacher around, parents have to make themselves available to explain instructions, help with technology, and supervise to ensure their children do their work.

Weight gain while homeschooling isn’t inevitable, though. You can take several steps to take back control over your health and fitness despite an increase in sedentary time.

  1. Take several short walks. Taking 10 minutes out of your day to walk around your neighborhood can help you get moving. Find strategic times like during breaks between your children’s classes, before lunch, and so on. If your children are too young to leave unsupervised, do a 10-minute cardio circuit in your living room instead.
  2. Incorporate active time into school hours. While you have to be available to help your children, you don’t have to sit by their side waiting. Start an at-home workout during reading time, test time, or other periods that typically require more of your child and less of you. You can also always pause your workout to help and then jump back into it right after.
  3. Keep track of your calories. You need to track all your food as well as the calories you burn. It’s easy to underestimate how much you’ve eaten, especially if you graze often. People also frequently overestimate how many calories they burn during their workouts. These miscalculations add up even faster when factoring in increased inactivity.
  4. Find workouts that you love. If you hate the exercises and workouts you’re doing at home, you’re not likely to stick with them. Experiment with new workouts by browsing Pinterest or free workout channels on YouTube.
  5. Establish an accountability partner. Having someone to remind you why you’re doing this and cheerlead your progress is a great motivator. Decide what kind of accountability inspires you the most and find someone to work alongside you to achieve your health and fitness goals.
  6. Reinvent your favorite recipes. If your go-to comfort food after a long day of homeschooling is an unhealthy snack or sumptuous meal, find a healthier way to enjoy it. For example, swapping out mayo for Greek yogurt in recipes reduces calories and fat while boosting protein.
  7. Sleep right. Homeschooling or virtual schooling often means the typical school schedule goes out the window. Fewer constraints on your morning schedule may tempt you to stay up late or sleep in well past your usual alarm. However, oscillating sleep patterns wreak havoc on digestion and blood sugar levels. It can also increase your appetite.

Pandemic weight gain is a very real thing, as is homeschooling weight gain. Taking steps like the above can help you maintain good dietary and exercise habits. If you’re struggling to lose weight despite your best efforts, we may be able to help. Contact us to learn more about bariatric surgery for weight loss.

5 Tips to Enjoy Thanksgiving After Bariatric Surgery

Thanksgiving is a holiday that’s become synonymous with overindulging on decadent food with family and friends. Given how well-established this tradition is in many households, bariatric patients aren’t likely to change their family’s viewpoint on the matter. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a family Thanksgiving after weight loss surgery. With the proper planning, you can eat and mingle over the holidays without feeling left out or breaking your diet.

Some of the biggest hurdles surrounding Thanksgiving for bariatric patients relate to the nature of their new diet. Your anatomy changes after weight loss surgery, meaning your stomach may not tolerate the same foods as it could before. You’ll also need significantly less food to feel full. Sugary, fatty, and carb-heavy foods can be difficult to digest or lead to dumping syndrome, which is the last thing you want on Thanksgiving Day. However, depriving yourself of delicious food isn’t the solution either.

Achieving Balance

You can use the following strategies to help you stick to your bariatric diet and enjoy a Thanksgiving meal:

  1. Offer to host Thanksgiving. This may sound like a tall order, particularly if you’ve never prepared a Thanksgiving meal before. However, it allows you to control the menu to a certain degree. You can find a plethora of bariatric-friendly Thanksgiving recipes online that use smart substitutions. You can include traditional Thanksgiving favorites that align with your new diet by using low-sodium, low-fat, or sugar-free ingredients. Resist the urge to forewarn your guests about the healthy nature of your dishes. This helps break the incorrect correlation many people hold between healthy and boring.
  2. Give away your leftovers. If you decide to host Thanksgiving Day, you will still have to deal with the leftover food. Your new stomach can only handle so much food at once, and your sides and entrees will likely spoil before you can eat them regardless. If you have takeout containers ready to go, you can load up guests with leftovers to take home with them. If you’re not hosting, bring any dishes you prepare in disposable aluminum pans rather than reusable baking dishes. This will prevent you from feeling obligated to bring the leftovers home with you.
  3. Give yourself three minutes. If your surgery was recent or you’re still learning which foods upset your new anatomy, this rule can save you from a stomachache. For new foods, take a single bite and chew it well. Use mindful eating tactics to notice the texture, flavors, and so on. Then wait three minutes. This may seem like a pain, but your new stomach will let you know within minutes if it can’t tolerate a specific food. If all goes well, proceed with caution, and stop if you start to notice any upset.
  4. Allow yourself three bites. The most important nutrient following bariatric surgery will always be protein. However, Thanksgiving meals often boast a cornucopia of starches. Denying yourself every savory side dish or sweet treat will leave you grumpy and unpleasant to be around. You can’t enjoy visiting with family and friends if all you can think about is that piece of pie you can’t eat. Assuming you’ve learned your new anatomy and what foods you can tolerate by the holidays, allow yourself three small bites after getting your protein first. If you’re not sure or don’t want to risk the temptation to overeat, you can bring a bariatric-friendly dessert as an alternative.
  5. Find good conversation. While food features heavily on Thanksgiving Day, congregating with loved ones is another critical element. Set down your fork when you’re done and catch up with a relative you haven’t seen in a while. You can also see if anyone wants to go on a post-dinner walk to be active on a typically sedentary day. If you’d rather avoid the temptation of dessert altogether, you can time the walk for when your host begins to break out the pie.

Having strategies in place like the above can help you navigate Thanksgiving Day after bariatric surgery. If you’re considering weight loss surgery or have questions about bariatric procedures, we can help. Contact us to learn if weight loss surgery is right for you.

 

How to Stop Gaining Weight During COVID-19

It’s not a secret that many Americans are noticing an alarming amount of weight gain as they remain indoors to adhere to social distancing and stay at home orders. While some are still attempting to maintain their workout routines, many are beginning to complain about the number on the scale creeping up or their clothes fitting uncomfortably tight.

Why People are Gaining Weight Even with Good Diets and Exercise

A certain demographic never seems to let anything interrupt their fitness regimen. They’re still food prepping, finding ways to maintain their exercise, and sticking to overall healthy lifestyles. Yet, these same individuals are struggling with weight gain right alongside their less active peers. There are two major culprits behind this unexplained weight gain: boredom and stress.

While many people may think their diet hasn’t changed while working from home, boredom can lead to unnecessary snacking. It helps pass the time and gives idle hands something to do besides scrolling absentmindedly through social media. Even if the snack options are healthy, calories add up no matter the source. If a person is eating more, the scale and the way their clothes fit will reflect.

Stress is also a common source of weight gain. When under stress, the body produces excess cortisol. High levels of cortisol can lead to stubborn fat that refuses to budge, particularly in the belly zone. Combine boredom eating with high levels of stress hormones, and even the best-intentioned fitness gurus are struggling to maintain their physique.

How to Implement Better Weight Loss and Nutrition Habits

Stick to a Schedule

The single biggest thing people can control to reduce the likelihood of weight gain during COVID-19 is to stay on their typical schedule. While it may be tempting to sleep in since many people are working from home and have no commute, it can derail the entire day including when they eat. Eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner at the same times as usual can cut down on excessive snacking. Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day can also ensure individuals are getting enough rest, which is critical for weight loss.

Log Foods to Avoid Mindless Snacking

Another great way to keep food intake under control is to keep a food log. Fitness apps often let people scan barcodes on food for simple tracking. Scanning or logging in meals and snacks allows people to remain aware of what they’re eating. This helps them be more mindful about their snack choices or reconsider munching on junk food altogether.

Find Creative and Healthy Food Options

Trips to the grocery store aren’t as simple as they used to be. Many grocery stores are limiting the number of people allowed in at once, which makes grocery shopping a much bigger hassle than it used to be. Most people are reducing how often they make trips to the store as well to avoid coming into contact with other people. This can make keeping fresh fruits and veggies on hand a challenge.

The following are some ideas for keeping well stocked in healthy snack options:

  • Canned or frozen fruits
  • Canned or frozen vegetables
  • Canned chicken or tuna
  • Greek yogurt
  • Light string cheese
  • Nuts
  • Raisins

Finding snacks that are high in fiber and protein can help people feel fuller for longer, which can reduce snacking in general.

Cut Out Caloric Beverages

Many people fail to realize just how many calories they’re consuming from their drink choices. Loading coffee up with sugar and cream can add up to hundreds of calories before individuals are even fully awake. Juices and sports drinks are usually loaded with sugar as well. Switching to black coffee or using lighter flavoring options in the morning and opting for water instead of juice throughout the day can shave off a significant number of calories from any given day.

Keeping up with fitness routines during COVID-19 requires a certain degree of planning and creativity. If you find yourself struggling to lose weight, contact us to learn how we can help you achieve your health and fitness goals.

Dieting: 3 Steps to Avoid the Temptation to “Cheat”

How do you lose weight without struggling with temptation? The reason that surgical weight loss procedures are so effective is because they remove willpower from the equation. Weight loss procedures reduce temptation by decreasing your appetite or yearning for food, as well as decreasing the size of the stomach, not only limiting your meal size, but – more importantly – limiting your indulgence. While you are considering which weight loss procedure might be best for you, here are three tricks you can take to avoid temptation in the interim.

  1. Avoid Supermarkets

You may have had the experience of going into the supermarket with the intention of getting healthy snacks, but having missed a meal, you find yourself throwing Pop Tarts into your cart. If that is you, make sure to eat before you do your shopping. Better yet, you might consider making someone else do your shopping. There are many grocery-delivery services in cities across the nation. Relying on these services to do your shopping eliminates the need for you to enter the den of inequity, your neighborhood supermarket. Remove temptation from the equation.

  1. Keep Healthy Snacks On You

As a doctor, I advise people to always keep healthy snacks available. If you do that, when hunger strikes, you have a healthy option right at your fingertips. Slide a Ziplock bag of crunchy carrots into your purse so that when you feel the urge to splurge on a greasy burger you have them available. Carry a reasonable portion of roasted almonds in your glove box. It doesn’t matter what healthy snack catches your fancy but having it easily available will mean that you don’t need to fight the temptation to fill up on that slice of cheese cake.

  1. Keep Junk Food Out of Sight and Out of Mind

A study from New York’s St. Bonaventure University helps show that people are inherently lazy. These researchers found that if you need to actually get up to grab an unhealthy snack, you tend to eat less of it. So, if you give into the temptation to bring a snack that is high in calories into your house, at the very least, you should keep it out of the pantry you have easy access to. One of our clients keeps unhealthy treats in her guest room and she finds that this helps her naturally eat less of them.

I hope that these simple, easy tricks help you.

Wishing you continued success on your weight wellness journey!

Dr. Waldrep

Does Drinking Water Really Help You Lose Weight?

Most of us have spent our entire lives with parents, friends and doctors telling us we need to drink more water.  The most common belief is we need to drink eight, 8-ounce glasses of water a day, which equals about 2 liters, or half a gallon. This is called the 8×8 rule and is very easy to remember.  However, like everything, everyone is different, and this is just conventional wisdom.  In fact, according to Snopes this belief started back in 1945:

Back in 1945 the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Research Council stated that adults should take in about 2.5 liters of water per day (which is roughly the equivalent of eight glasses of water), but it also noted most of that intake level was already satisfied through the consumption of food without the need for the additional drinking of water.

That’s right, we consume much of that needed water through food.

But what about the consumption for weight loss?  I’ve had many patients tell me they have increased their water intake with hopes of even a little weight loss, but have failed at losing any pounds with just increasing their water.  What they didn’t know was WHEN to drink it.  Fortunately, a UK-based study published in the journal Obesity found that people who drank a couple of glasses of water before every meal lost over 8.8 lbs during a three-month period.

Scientists at University of Birmingham concluded that the preliminary evidence was that “water preloading before main meals may be an effective weight loss strategy” because it helps people feel fuller and avoid pangs of hunger.

This article first appeared on PLOS Blogs.

So drink up before meals for the simplest strategy for losing pounds!

Have 50 or less pounds to lose?  My innovated approach to weight loss may be your answer.  Learn more about my innovative WRAP procedure.

A Happy New Year Boost to Help Achieve Your Goals

Happy New Year!  The best part of a new year is it gives you the opportunity for a new you and the opportunity to evaluate what is working for you and what things may need to shift in order to reach your goals….even though it sounds so cliché!

Now that we are in full swing into 2018, it’s a great time to commit to a healthy lifestyle.  Some of your 2018 goals may be to change your eating habits, increase nutritional value in your diet or increase how much exercise you get in each week.  Whatever your goal entails, it’s important to remember that practice doesn’t make perfect (since there is no such thing as perfect), practice makes permanent.  Whatever we do daily becomes what our lifestyle eventually becomes.  And it doesn’t mean you have to be perfect 24/7, it just means you must be consistent.  When you are making goals and resolutions, there is one thing that is very important to your success that will get you to your goal quicker:

Don’t just set your goals, write them down – You will find a certain kind of magic in reaching your goals if you write them down and make sure you set a date and time you will achieve them.  The most important part of building the permanent lifestyle you desire is to know where you are going.  It’s like driving to an address.  If you don’t have an address to where you are driving to, how will you get there?  To really succeed, set your goals so you know the road you need to travel to get there.

Great, so you have set your goals and have written them down.  It’s time to get busy and figure out helpful hints and tips to keep on track.

These tips will help you stay on track with your journey:

  1. Analyze your current eating habits.  As I discussed in a previous blog, calories are not like snowballs, we may think we have cut down our calories, but we didn’t count the two handfuls of popcorn at the movies or the three bity bites of cake after lunch.  We don’t even think about them because they seem so small and insignificant., but they add up!  Often times we have so many insignificant (so we think) moments that we don’t even realize it has become a habit to ignore them and once ignored…..we keep eating them.  The most important factor in changing your eating habits is to make changes that you can live with forever. Habits can last a lifetime, so make sure that your eating habits will keep you healthy and happy.  Once you know what your habits really are, you can map out your meals.  Maybe you are better at just three meals a day and just need to change food choices or maybe you are a snacker throughout the day and need six smaller meals a day.  Start small on your changes and make new habits that become permanent.
  2. Never go grocery shopping when you are hungry.  Plan to eat something before you go because if you don’t and you are starving walking the aisle, it’s so easy to get sucked in to buying bad food choices.  Make sure you also stick to the shopping list with great focus and only get those items.
  3. Slow down your eating.  Your brain takes around 20 minutes to register the chemicals that tell your brain you are full.  After your meal, the levels continue to rise over 10 to 30 minutes.  If you slow down and let your brain catch up, you will eat less.
  4. That brings me to my next tip…..don’t ever get to the point of feeling so hungry you would eat anything.  It’s nearly impossible for anyone to slow down their eating if they are so hungry anything and everything sounds good to eat.  If you need a little snack to get you to dinner time, eat a healthy one loaded with nutrition to get you to dinner.

We must eat to survive and eating really is an enjoyable experience. However, none of us like to feel overweight, tired, sluggish and foggy.  And that is what happens with unhealthy eating habits, binging, and choices that don’t serve us.  So, write down your goals, follow tips that help you stay on track with you goals and remember to celebrate each successful step no matter how small.

My trusted staff is now available to help guide you to meeting your healthy lifestyle goals.  To learn more, contact us today!