Most people would agree with this statement: food makes life better. Of course, when you hear this statement, you’re mostly thinking about scrumptious meals that impress all your senses. When we hear the term ‘diet’ though, most of us don’t feel so excited about mealtimes anymore. But it doesn’t have to be that way!
Yes, a diet plan usually requires you to change your habits of digging into your favourite dishes and drastically cutting down on portion size. But it doesn’t have to be boring, difficult and tasteless. It doesn’t have to make life less enjoyable. Simply think of innovative food items like gluten free beer and bread and use our tips below.
Know Your Motivations
Often, people get discouraged and stop following their diet plans, because they lose motivation. When you’re craving a juicy burger or you’re having a bad day it’s very easy to forget why you started the new lifestyle in the first place. Or, in a weak moment, the need for some sugar can seem much more important than a new year’s resolution.
No matter your reasons now, it can become challenging in weeks to come. For this reason, write down the exact reason for embarking on a gluten free journey or becoming a vegan. Place that list where you can see it while preparing food, reminding you of your values and helping you focus your mind on the end result.
Have Realistic Expectations
Something else that will influence your level of motivation is the results you’ll see over time. Whether it is to feel healthier or lose some weight, you’re doing this to bring about change. Simply be realistic about what kind of change is really possible:
- You won’t lose weight at the same rate as your friend or neighbour, so don’t use their goals as your goals.
- A human body often takes time to recover after years of bad eating habits, so you may only start feeling better weeks or months after changing your meal plans.
So, don’t only measure success by what you see in the mirror. Remind yourself that you’re putting in a lot of hard work that you’ll benefit from in the long run. That’s already something to be proud of.
Change Exercise and Diet Plans at the Same Time
Some will say starting a diet and an exercise routine at the same time is taking on too much at once. You know your own abilities but consider the fact that the two habits will complement each other in terms of results. This could be a great motivator to keep going when you’re feeling tired one day or you’re craving something different for dinner.
So, maximise the results by going all in, so you enjoy positive outcomes even sooner than expected.
Shop with a List
When you’re shopping with the new diet plan in mind, never go to the store without a list and even a budget to keep to. Old habits die hard and before you know it, you’ve picked out the wrong food items, telling yourself it will be rewards for sticking to a diet. Unfortunately, that ‘reward’ can quickly become a bad habit again.
Firstly, research food products so you know what will suit your new lifestyle. This makes healthy shopping less overwhelming because you won’t compare items and waste time reading labels in store. You may even be surprised at what you discover when doing some research online. Brands now cater for many diets, so meals don’t have to be boring. Buy that gluten free beer and vegan burgers, so you can enjoy mealtimes like before.
Shopping should also be seen as your tool to make this new lifestyle easier to follow. If you empower yourself to make healthy meals by having all the ingredients at home, you’ll have fewer excuses not to follow your new meal plan.
Plan Excursions Better
Whether you’re simply heading out to dinner or going on holiday, do a little research before you leave the house. Find out which of the restaurant’s meals are most appropriate for your lifestyle. You’d be surprised how many gluten free beverages and dishes are on menus these days. For a holiday, search online for stores near your hotel that have relevant ingredients.
You’ll find all this information online these days, making it easier to follow your new diet, even if you’re tired or simply want to relax on a night out.
What’s Your Greatest Challenge?
Not sold on the idea yet? You only have to do a quick online search for healthy living, and you’ll find thousands of health focused videos showing how a new diet can be enjoyable and even better than before. And with our guidelines, it will be much easier than you think.
If there’s a specific concern you have or diet question that’s holding you back, share in the comments. Let’s all support each other towards healthier living. Food can still make life better, even if ‘diet’ forms part of your new normal.