The word ‘diet’ used to mean ‘what we eat’. But over the past few decades, the term ‘diet’ has come to mean ‘what restrictions are you putting on yourself so you can lose weight’.
We human beings are very impatient creatures and it’s very tempting to want instant results. Many of those ads on TV and in the magazines and online are promising that, but if you’ve tried any of them, you know that crazy fad diets are pretty much destined to fail.
So, what sort of diets have you tried?
There’s the Banana Diet, the Grapefruit Diet, the Beverly Hills Diet, the Hollywood Diet, the Cabbage Soup Diet, the Lemon Diet… you get the picture.
Then there are diets that promote eating certain healthy foods or avoiding others, such as a Vegetarian Diet, Vegan Diet, Paleo Diet, Blood Type Diet, Gluten Free Diet and more.
And let’s not forget the meal replacement shakes that even some doctors recommend. It’s exhausting! In this day and age of information overload, it’s no wonder that so many people are struggling to figure out what exactly is right for them. Many of the above are obviously not.
At Satori, our women’s gym in the Adelaide suburb of Unley, our personal trainers often get asked what sort of diet is best. So what’s the answer? In a nutshell —
1. Eat whole foods.
2. Avoid or at least cut down on processed foods.
3. Try to avoid sugar as much as possible.
We’re not talking sugar in your coffee, we’re talking about the hidden sugars in the food we eat. If you don’t know what we mean, check out the label on the next packet of food you buy. You might be surprised. For example, why does tomato sauce have more sugar than chocolate topping?
Our trainers are all fit and healthy because they choose to eat whole foods. It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle choice.
8 small steps to get you started — just start with one
We understand that change can be challenging, so we’ve put together a few tips here to get you started on your journey to healthy eating. Why not choose one or two that sound easier to you. Once you’re made them part of your lifestyle, then maybe add another step…
1. If you’re living on coffee, try and have fewer cuppas a day.
2. Replace that juice drink with a glass of water — apple juice has more sugar than many soft drinks!
3. Drink 8 glasses of water a day — every cell in your body needs water.
4. Make sure you carry some healthy snacks with you. A handful of nuts or veggie sticks might just stop you grabbing a ‘health’ bar that’s full of sugar as you’re rushing through your busy day.
5. Try and include more living foods in your diet. Whole fruits and especially veggies.
6. Eat more frequently — this helps keep the blood sugars stable and hunger in check.
7. Start reading the labels on food. Google anything you don’t recognise — you might just be horrified at what’s hidden in our food.
8. Eat consciously. Enjoy what you’re eating, take the time to taste it and really appreciate it.
Warning — don’t try to be perfect!
Trying to go cold turkey on everything is almost doomed to fail. It’s just too hard for most of us. We’re human, after all. A friend of mine lets herself cheat twice a week. To her, that could be a small piece of cake at a café with a friend or a social glass of wine with dinner. She finds that it takes the pressure off. Find a way to take the pressure off yourself, while you slowly start to change your diet. Or should I say, lifestyle.
Good luck and we look forward to seeing you at our Unley gym, very soon.