A new(ish) diet for the new(ish) year.
You vowed to eat healthy this year, but every time you try a new diet/app, the magic quickly wears off. So… what to do?
Listen to your body.
Although we sometimes have craving issues, we generally eat well. Too much crap food just makes us feel like crap. Lately I’ve been a tempted to Paleo it up, but I love me some cheese. Here’s what works best in my busy world:
- Eating four or five times a day. My trainer recommends noshing every four hours, so that’d be four meals a day. Our schedule doesn’t always work out that way, so sometimes dinner before six means an extra snack after eight.
- Food group combos. Each meal/snack has a protein/dairy and a fruit/veg, and sometimes an extra carb. Less blood sugar spikes, peeps.
- Proper portions. The plate method is one quarter protein, one quarter starch, and half veg/fruit. I’m a recovering pastaholic, but I try.
- Minimizing sugar. You guys remember that I blame sugar for my infertility, right? There are a zillion reasons to cut out sugar, but it’s just. so. hard. Cutting down is better than nothing, and focusing on sneaky culprits like bread and yoghurt go a long way. My resolution chart is doing an AWESOME job of keeping my over-desserting-tendency in check… just because it has two s’s doesn’t mean I have to go back for seconds!
- Eating what we like and not eating what we don’t like. Nothing’s off the table – life’s too short.
- Making our food. We eat at home and skip packaged/convenience foods most of the time. A long list of ingredients means it’s not good for us, especially if they’re unpronounceable.
- Planning. As in grocery lists, a veggie-box delivery, our meal plan, and divvying up the meal prep. It really doesn’t take long to cut up a pepper/marinate the meat/sauté the onions while the kids are free-playing.
Despite my best intentions and doing what we’ve always done, I recently learned I’m anemic… who knew? It seems my hormones that were so whack every time I was trying to get knocked up finally decided to settle down now that we’re donezo. And the result: iron deficiency. I’m taking an iron pill, which I’m not crazy about, but turns out it’s an extra awesome way to keep late night munchies at bay. My doc said to take it as soon as I wake up and then wait an hour before eating. I gave it a try, but AS IF I can spare an hour pre-breakfast when we’re hustling as it is. And even worse: it made me nauseous. Lie-on-the-floor/can’t-move/memories-of-pregnancy-with-none-of-the-happy-thoughts nauseous. I knew I needed iron and amping up my meat intake wasn’t enough (although – YUM – I was vegetarian for years but now can’t get enough steak, much to Ernie’s delight) so decided to flip it around and take it on an empty stomach BEFORE bed. Which means I can’t eat for two hours prior to hitting the hay. Awesome, right? This technique is similar to brushing your teeth/shutting down your kitchen after dinner, but for me, it just works better.
My other diet revamp for the New Year was to eat more pulses. I love those little powerhouses of protein/fiber/iron/energy… what’s not to love? Some might say the taste, but to those naysayers I say pshaw! Mix them into a frittata/pasta sauce/soup/salad/anything and they disappear. Our kids don’t like the look, but when I puree and spread the paste on a quesadilla/grilled cheese it’s all good. And nope, I don’t lie when I Sneaky Chef it – we’re all about honesty over here. The reason this was a revamp is because I like to soak/boil/freeze my beans/lentils/chickpeas (cheaper, tastier, and BPA free) but I often forget. There is only so much I can remember. But again, my resolution chart is doing an AWESOME job of reminding me, so I’m back on the bean bandwagon. Woot!
The best diet is the one that makes you feel your best. You might still have a muffin top but whatevs if you have plenty o’ energy. And really, if you’ve had kids and haven’t had plastic surgery, you deserve that muffin top. And another one for dessert.
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