Over the last 6 1/2 years of maintaining my 125+ pound weight-loss, I've developed guidelines for eating and staying healthy. I've stuck to these 10 food rules pretty closely because they have become part of my value system. They aren't something I constantly think about anymore. I firmly believe that many people lose weight and then gain it all back because they haven't developed a firm system of nutrition habits and beliefs.
My 10 food rules are pretty straight forward. You don't have to subscribe to any certain diet, deprive yourself, know everything about nutrition, or have a big bank account to start implementing some of these actions. You just need to start.
Do some of your own food rules make my list?
1. I NEVER skip meals.
Because a hungry Naomi is not a happy person to be around. Even if I'm not hungry, I eat at meal time so that I do not go crazy when I realize all of a sudden "I'm starving!!!!" Plus, I really love and enjoy food. Skipping a chance to eat a healthy meal is like punishing myself. Starting off the day with a protein-rich breakfast is the best way to go because you won't crash or feel hungry again as soon as you're finished eating. I love a good protein shake or scrambled eggs.
2. I always prepare my lunch ahead of time to bring to work with me.
It's not difficult to prep 5 salads for the week. 10 salads if you have a spouse. Saves money and overthinking. I never have that thought that goes something like, "Oh no… what will I eat today?"
3. I always consume at least 64 ounces of pure water a day.
Because hydration is important to many mechanisms of the body. It curbs boredom eating and headaches. And my water bottle is neon orange, so it pretty awesome to drink out of.
4. I try to have at least 2 of my 3 main meals without distractions.
Sometimes, I actually like to taste and smell my food… weird huh? It's good to appreciate deliciousness without multitasking. Eating while watching tv, surfing the internet or doing work is doing a disservice to the awesomeness of your food.
5. I never cut out entire food groups.
Because I've tried it before and it doesn't work for me. I've taken enough biology, human physiology, and nutrition classes to know that the human body operates best with carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. The ratio of these food groups will depend much more on your own genetic makeup and activity level. This is something for you to decide (if you want to get deep into that). Choose healthy fats like coconut oil, avocado, real butter, ghee, olive oil, macadamia nut oil, hemp seed oil. Eat carbohydrates in the form of lots of green vegetables, low-sugar fruits (berries), and complex grains like quinoa. And eat meats that are organic, free-range, and wild-caught.
6. Before soothing my stress with food, I ask myself if there is something else I can do instead.
Comfort can come in many sources– although food is fast and easy. Sometimes, I try to drink warm liquids, inhale essential oil scents like rosemary or peppermint, and watch a funny animal video on youtube. Google "stress relief". Sometimes, I just need to stop everything… pause… clear my mind of all of the junk… and breath really deep for a solid minute or two.
7. I don't workout so that I can eat more. Food is not a reward.
I'm not the woman that wears the tank top proclaiming "Run now, wine later" or calculating how many calories I burn on the stairmaster so I can eat more chocolate. Working out and eating healthy do tend to go hand and hand, BUT it's a mutual relationship, not conditional. When I workout, I feel better… which generally leads to better food choices. I don't workout so that I can make poor food choices. Exercise is important for good health though!
8. Highly processed foods have no place in my home.
Because I will eat them all. Seriously. I have no shame telling you that I become easily addicted to crap foods if they are kept in my home. Chemicals actually taste quite delicious if you allow yourself to eat enough of them. Because I know I have this weakness, I don't bring it into my home. If I want ice cream, I get it as dessert at a restaurant on occasion– not a pint (or two) that I can eat all of in one sitting at home. These types of foods are in high moderation for me in general… because I am prone to sugar cravings. I shop smart to keep my food consumption in check!
9. Free food isn't really "free".
I used to work for a government health organization, and there were always donuts, homemade baked goods, or candy in the break room. It's a fat woman's worst nightmare and dream come true. It's FREE and it looks SO GOOD! But it's not really free. It adds to your waistline and multiplies your chance for disease and illness.
10. The crockpot is one of my best friends.
It's true. I probably spend more time with it than I do with my closest friends. No one understands my need for tender meats cooked 8 hours better than the crockpot. It's always there waiting for me when I arrive home from work each day. It greets me with the wonderful aroma of hearty stews, succulent meats, nutrient-rich bone broths, or spicy vegetables. I can't go wrong with my crockpot.
>>Do you follow some of these food rules but still have trouble with sugar cravings and emotional eating? You're not alone! I hosted a webinar all about the reasons why we eat and why we crave sugar. Want to see the replay and get the free 18-page workbook? Click the button below for instant access!
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