4 Tips for Junk Food Independence
Happy Independence Day! Hopefully you enjoyed your July 4th cheat meal (it's important to live a little). Now, try these tips to battle your internal rebel who wants to eat chips, chocolate and drink cocktails more often than you'd care to admit. By making just a few simple changes you'll be able to eat a whole lot healthier.
Remove your trigger foods
When I'm training for a bodybuilding competition, I have to eat clean at least 95% of the time. If my favorite junk foods were in the house this would become a truly miserable task. Why on earth would you buy chocolate chip cookies and leave them in your pantry if you know that you can't eat just one? Do yourself a favor and vow to stop the self-sabotage.
A lot of times we eat thinking that we are hungry when, in reality, we are thirsty. According to the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine women should drink 11.5 cups per day and men should drink about 15.5 cups. Drinking water aids weight loss by helping with digestion and is a natural appetite suppressor.
Have you ever had a long day then stood in front of the refrigerator wondering what to eat and then grabbed the least healthy thing? Me too! That's why preparing your food ahead of time is helpful. When you open your fridge and find meals with chicken, rice, and roasted peppers, or lean steak, baked potato, and green beans ready and waiting to be eaten you've made your life so much easier. This eliminates the need for you to draw on willpower when you're tired and saves you time on busy days. I tend to prep Wednesdays and Sundays, but find one or two days a week that work best for your schedule so you can stay consistent.
Replace junk food with healthier snacks
In my 20s, I used to drink 2 liters of soda per day. Yikes! No wonder I was overweight, that's like 820 calories and 222 grams of sugar (55.5 teaspoons of sugar) per day before I even ate a bite of food. Just switching from regular cola to diet I lost weight. I switched chocolate pudding to sugar free pudding and then eventually switched to chocolate flavored protein shakes. If you have a sweet tooth, try making baked apples instead of apple pie. Sometimes small changes are helpful because you eat healthier options without sacrificing the taste you are craving.
Just like we celebrate the 4th of July, remember to celebrate your small wins. It takes about a month to create new habits. By doing a few modifications you can make choices that will improve your overall health. Stay healthy!