A Bowl of WTH: Get on Track

A Bowl of WTH: Get on Track

Food journals. Fitness Apps. Calendars. These are a few ways health conscious people track their habits. What are they tracking? Their food relationships activity, types of activity, water, weight, and more. Why are they tracking? Fitness OCD? Thrill of goal achievement? Mostly, it’s accountability and discipline. I do get excited about those Fitbit badges. I do have specific recommendations and high suggestions as far as how and what to track in a small setting. However, one on one or reading this post, I am not in charge of your life, you are. That is a powerful authority you need to claim. This is your grab the bull by the horns moment tool to create your success and maintain it.

Simplicity & Commitment

This needs to become an almost every day investment; however, don’t over think what to use. I like Apps for the multitask that they do with minimal input from me. Quick App store search and you’ve got options. Play around with a few. There are some major players. Apple provides a health app. FitBit looks at food, activity, sleep, water, and even your menstrual cycle. Unless your manstrating- maybe a suggestion to the developers? Every one should be able to keep up with hormonal flows is my personal belief. My fav is MyFitnessPal. If inputting to an app takes away from keeping it simple, then keeping journal or calendar works too. It’s what appeals to you without over thinking it.  A factor in your tracking choice may be what helps you maintain commitment- accountability partners. It could be a physical presence of spirit, human or a virtual presence. Think beyond your front door for support. Most Apps provide communities, there are health lifestyle groups on Facebook or other social media. Create your own group/community! Even if you just spectate in these groups, seeing and having support makes making changes stick easier. Once your reach goals, use this tracking and support tool to maintain. So weight loss was my initial goal. As my food relationship shifted, my goals are now about addressing health issues and maximizing that relationship. Just participated in a group Sugar Fast. I love these transparent and empowering women! Now I am holding my water count accountable. Slipped off that wagon. I have my favorite account-abilities and connections, find yours. Join me on Fitbit, MyFitnessPal,or invite me to your Facebook/Social media group!

Head Game

Where the overwhelm may hit is: it’s new, so many goals to tackle, and comparison to others. It’s crucial to check in with your head when you develop this lifestyle habit. Defeat, self doubt, and mistrust in you can over ride any good. Your precious soul is worth more than a beat up. A new habit takes grace and when the wheels fall off, putting them back on. I will say this again and again, baby steps are steps. Creating a new habit and tackling those goals may require more time in smaller steps. When I set the goal to “loose baby weight” what made me successful this time over any others is honoring my time and one step at a time. My first focus was to drop 200 calories a day over two to three months and get active. This allowed my to focus on my how to do it and less on scale. Once I got that, then I hit my next goal. Then the next. My how became as important as what I was doing. My food relationship focus was on health not dieting. Activity exploration led to enjoyment and passion. My baby steps affected my head game in ability to create focus and see victories along the way. There was one huge stumbling block that hit. HARD. Looking at others and doing the comparing check list. Your physical body is not the same as mine. Mine isn’t the same as some one else’s. What I love about Ayurveda is the recognizing of different body types, they can all be different, and each has it’s own healthy form. This was the first enlightening of why I was struggling SO BAD. We are all so gloriously different. I had to stop, even unconsciously, aiming for an image. Stop hating for others looking a certain way and honor the image of me. Your head game needs to focus on your achievements, all of them, along the way. Your head game needs to respect and honor others along the way. Your journey from another is separate in what it looks like and common in humanity. The ability to grasp this concept is life altering. Gracefully Honor your – baby – steps and your journey cause head game is everything to your success.

Small add on. Be transparent in challenges, uplifting in words. Being authentic and honest when you struggle allows freedom in you and empowerment for others to love where they are. At the same time, I watch over and over again in some groups where we spur others to continue in harmful habits and spur on spiral. Don’t give advice or place judgement. You can honor and acknowledge a feeling or condition plus offer a nonadvice, nonjudgement uplift. “Hey I understand your struggling, we are hanging in there with you. You can do this.” This is trans-formative for you and the other soul, even if it may take a while to sink in.

Invest in your goals even when accountability seems frightening. Your changes will happen and you will find more you. I’m here to help. Follow my transparent journey of life, parenting, and wellness on Instagram. Follow Me on Pinterest for ideas, inspiration, and my love of memes. See you there!

Namaste

Juls

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A Bowl of WTH: Diet Idols and Your Diet

A Bowl of WTH: Diet Idols and Your Diet

This can become a charged discussion and topic. I am going to handle this with care and truth. Up front, I do not believe Modern Western Medicine is everything as I tend to follow eastern dietary guidelines such as Ayurveda. I do not believe in total food group eliminations or eating mostly from one group on an extended basis. You can disagree with me respectfully and your opinion has value. It’s important to address the misconceptions surrounding what we should eat or not eat, especially fad diets. Hang with me till the end.

Diet Idols

AKA as fad diets or diet trends. This isn’t completely unique to the United States but runs rampant with damage. The damage of diet trends can be your health, weight management, and body perceptions. Your health and weight management may take a toll with eliminating necessary food groups in your daily food connections and yo yo weight loss and gain. Constant weight loss and weight gain can cause stress on your heart and psyche. The reason that yo yo weight happens is extreme changes are successful for a time period and cannot be maintained. Thus completely eliminating carbs, going total protein, or high amounts of fat may be too challenging. This also puts your body function and flow into over drive or dysfunction. You need the right carbs to fuel. Too much protein can tax your kidneys and adrenal systems to the point of creating kidney stones plus more. High amounts of fat over time can create acid reflux/heart burn and heart problems. The true issue with many diets and fads are the extremes which impact you and your ability to believe in making sustaining healthy choices.

However….

These trends are not wholly bad. Low carb diets have brought to light that much of our American carb consumption has been unhealthy and too much grain carb as opposed to needing fruit and veggie carbs. So yes, you need to reduce or eliminate white, bleached wheat products and aim for whole grains. The right carbs in the right amount is what is needed. Other diets have highlighted our over involvement with sugar and needing to lower sugar consumption. Some diets push more whole food and less process foods. There are times where you may need more of a certain group of food more than another. When my iron was low, I ate mostly lean proteins and vegetables. When my reflux acted up, it was half whole grains. Right now I am balanced and my food relationship reflects that. Temporarily doing a food more over another can be necessary but rarely beneficial in being permanent. Following diets of extremes are harmful. Take changes with a grain of salt and keep balance of proteins, fats, grains, and veggie/fruit.

Your Diet Choices

You need to keep balance in mind. I have been watching so many people and health professionals in these trends. Those who find balance and keep that “rainbow” vegetable and fruit food relationship are maintaining success and health with some of these diet trends. It is possible but balance is the key. They do not take extremes. A while ago, for kicks, I took a nutrition course from an Australian university. It was enlightening with global student involvement and instruction. From this and researching other countries dietary guidelines, I learned our government guidelines compares well in understanding (USA dietary link below). It is important to keep an eye on what changes in guidelines. Old enough to remember the food pyramind? Chuck that out the window. It’s more about the lean protein and veggies, while lowering (not eliminating) grains. Plus variety. And balance. Am I repeating myself? It’s that important. If you want more specific guidelines thus choosing a diet or point plan, know this needs to be a long term or permanent change. It’s not going to work long term if you go back to what you were doing before. Take note of why something is working. More often than not, its due to removing foods that were never met to be in your daily relationship to begin with and more of the good stuff. Take note when it’s not working. It could be your body needs something different. Something medically is going on. Or mental health and/or stress needs more attention. You are not a set of systems, you are a person with a soul. Your mental care affects your body’s function and ability. Your habits for your physical lifestyle affect your mental state. It’s all connected and needs to be viewed with equal importance.

I do whole heartedly believe, within reason, it’s okay to splurge every once and while. Self participation a couple of weeks ago. Certainly, semi splurge on a once a week basis (as in one meal). The reason for once a week, one meal has little to do with weight but more with it affects in how you feel afterwards. It sucks, trust me. Going to far in splurges impacts your over all emotional and mental health quicker than physical health.

Guidelines in You Daily Food Relationship

There are health professionals who can guide and help create specific plans if you find that route enhances your success. These things you need to keep in mind when making choices

  1. Am I eliminating a necessary food group? Am I eating too much of a food group? Carbs (grains & veggies & fruits), Proteins (nuts, beans, meat, and some veggies), or Fats (unsaturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated)- You need some kind of presence of these in your diet (also known as macros). Then as you go along, is it impacting your health negatively? I must watch my fat levels and keep it low but for others the recommended or slightly higher levels of fats are fine. Raw diets are not for everyone. It could impact your digestion. Too much protein and side pain? Get that checked out. Lower proteins or opt for more veggie based proteins.
  2. Is there appropriate portion control or can I achieve appropriate portion control? More than likely, Americans eat too much in a sitting but some diets call for too little and don’t accommodate for stepping down into appropriate portions. It’s okay to work into a life style change and it not happen immediately. Most likely small changes will lead to better success.
  3. How is my mental health? If you feel defeated and deal with self doubt then there is some soul/mental work to be done along side your diet changes. A counselor, wellness coach, life coach, spiritual coach, or trusted friend needs to be a part of your plan. Success in your food relationship is not wholly dependent on what you put or don’t put in your mouth. Its part mind set too. I love Louise Hay books and Mirror work she describes. EFT tapping is amazing (Tapping Solution, Donna Eden). These are two things you can invest in easily and right now. Additionally, don’t compare yourself to others. The steps you make are yours and they count. Baby steps are still steps. Concentrate on you then celebrate with others.

This is all to inform and caution you for your health and best success. No judgement on what you decided to do. With the exception, DO NOT go to the extreme unless a medical professional states it is necessary for you and you are being monitored. I cannot understate how important balance is.

Namaste in Your Food Relationship

JRiley

Here is the current link for American Government Health Agency guidelines (2015-2020) https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/.  

A Bowl of WTH: We are Food Container Hoarders

A Bowl of WTH: We are Food Container Hoarders

Also known as meal prep. And we get pretty excited about it and like to take pictures. Look what I did! It takes a fair amount of effort in meal prepping. It doesn’t need to be difficult or extremely time consuming. However. Hard truth. You will pay for it one way or another. It is your choice and not my place to judge it. I make the choice to put my efforts before hand which is less costly than paying afterwards. It’s easier to get organized and create healthier options when meals are planned and prepped before hand. It makes your life easier to be well and there are hacks. It has little to do with salads. I love salads but it can get old, quick.

Foremost is understanding your ingredients and materials. Prepared foods and boxed foods can help or hurt you. Lots use terms to catch your attention in hopes you never become aware of what is actually in it. Watch sugar and salt content. Avoid chemicals as much as possible. Organic and natural is best. It’s not just a health nut lifestyle choice. Those chemicals GMOs impact your health in every possible way, physical and mental. Reduce or eliminate when possible.

Please be environmentally friendly. Avoid small packaging when you can. I get it. Prepackaged makes it easier to grab and go. Opt for recycle-able or reusable containers. Small changes make a difference!

Meal prep Hacks

Bulk it and repeat it. This is where we reduce costs in this house and it’s much less work. You need variety but it can be every other week or by season. Rice and soups can be frozen. If you need more variety. Create your own frozen meals. Just eat within a month or two (soups hold longer). Canning, if you’re in to that, is another great way to maximize your meal planning efforts. Vegetarian meals tend to be cheaper in cost. Intentionally creating left overs when you cook dinner is an excellent way to simplify meal prep.

Go raw. This isn’t recommended for everyone. For digestive issues, it may be safer to lightly cook your food for it to absorb better. However, creating raw meals cuts out cooking time. Salads, sandwiches on multigrain, or wraps in lettuce or multigrain tortillas work. Sushi grade fish with some rice and veggies works. Lunch meat wrapped with veggies works. Veggies and dip. Fruit and yogurt. It all works.

Semi done prep or prepared is allowed. I do it all the time. Buying some salt free or flavored nuts then mixing and putting in small containers is a stable in this house. I buy string cheese or spreadable cheese wedges to go with veggies and fruits work. Precooked meat with veggies, sweet potato, or pre cooked rice is done. I will buy chicken or turkey meatballs or beans to create meals. It truly is about checking the labels for sugar, salt, and chemical content.

The Snack Station in the Riley House

Stay seasonal. Many vegetables and fruits are out of season where we live. I love pea protein and buying them frozen in bulk to go with carrots, brown rice pasta (watch portions), and olive oil plus herbs. In the fall I was all about sweet potatoes, brussels. In the summer, it’s wraps and salads. Don’t think you absolutely must eat something right now that is expensive. Watch produce and a quick search about your area will let you know what is in season when.

Eat what you like within reason. If you don’t like salads, don’t eat them. If you are quesadillas like we do, there are a variety of ways to make them. It’s always beneficial to try new things. But don’t continue to eat something you know you just cannot stand.

Think Herbs, not salt. When creating flavor, stock up on herbs and spices. A link is included for the basics with expansion soon. I love my herbs! They do so much for your body. https://notjusthealthnuts.com/2018/04/17/no-salt-added-spice-up-your-food-life/

Watch fillers. That means chips. Veggie chips or home made veggie (not potato) chips or parmesan crisps are okay. I love doritos but it is in the rare occasion box. For good reason. It’s a filler food and horrible one at that.

Quick Meal and Meal Prep Ideas:

  • Baked chicken and salad
  • Pizza (limit) and salad
  • Turkey lettuce burgers and sweet potato fries
  • Some groceries offer griller veggie options
  • Breakfast
  • Quesadillas: chicken or choice meat, just veggies, avocados, and/or beans. Watch cheese portions and often I will reduce cheese amounts by mixing in a reduced fat cream cheese.
  • Burrito or taco bowls with brown rice or whole grain rice
  • Asian bowls: choice lean meat, chick peas, veggies with jasmine or basamati rice. For flavor, I love Asian sauces but go sparingly as they tend to be high in salt.

Meal planning is often cost effective and allows more healthier opportunities. The most important benefit is investing in yourself. You need well and to create your well being.

Prep on and Namaste