← Go back Healthy Eating after the Holidays
Published on Wednesday, January 10, 2018 by

healthyeating240January is one of the busiest times of year for the diet industry. After the back-to-back indulgence seasons of Halloween (let’s be honest, it’s not just the kids who eat all that candy) and winter holidays, lots of us are looking to clean up our eating habits.

However, it’s no secret that for most of women, diets don’t work. Although people start with the best of intentions, most will fall off of them in a matter of weeks.

In my experience working with moms, many have told me about how they were successful with losing weight by following a diet when they were younger. They spent lots of time and energy to follow those diets. Basically they changed their life to fit the diet. Now that they are moms, this just simply isn’t an option. Healthy eating needs to fit in their busy lives.

Instead of starting a diet, I recommend making small changes to your eating habits. Your success with one small change will inspire you to make a second. Success with your second change will inspire you to make a third change, and so on. The culmination of these small changes can have a big effect on your nutritional health. And, these changes will fit within your busy life.

I’m sharing some examples of small changes to inspire you. You’ll notice that most of these steps are about adding new things to your eating habits, not taking things away. I have a sneaking suspicion that another reason why diets usually don’t work is that diets come from a place of deprivation that we try to convince ourselves is self-care. What they don’t take into account is the fact that food isn’t just fuel for our bodies.

Food is also an amazing source of pleasure and expression of culture. Instead of depriving yourself, I recommend coming from a place of self-love and care. Choose foods that will nourish your body and satisfy your emotional and mental health. For those of you who are moms of daughters, an amazing side-effect of taking this approach is that you’ll be setting a fantastic example for your daughter. Studies show that daughters pick up on mothers’ feelings about food and bodies and apply these values to their own bodies at a really young age. In this way, taking time to care for your own eating habits is actually caring for your daughter.

Diet-Free Healthy Eating New Years Resolutions:
•Add one more serving of vegetables each day.
•Try one new vegetable or fruit each week.
•Meal plan weekly.
•Try one new whole grain each week (bulk food sections have a fantastic variety).
•Join the “Meatless Monday” movement.
•Eat one serving of nuts and/or seeds daily. Try new types of nuts and seeds.
•Create a strategy to drink more water.
•Slowly reduce the number of pumps in your coffee until you’re enjoying your daily latte without all the added sugar/artificial sweetener and artificial flavours found in syrups.
•Try one new recipe each week.
•Turn off all media during meals and snacks. Eat mindfully.
•Start family meals by saying grace/expressing gratitude (choose a mindfulness activity that fits your world view).
•Eat a fermented food/drink most days. Examples include yogurt with live cultures, kefir, kombucha, fermented sauerkraut or kimchi.

Kristen, MSc, RD is a women’s and children’s dietitian who frees picky kids to ENJOY eating. And, empowers women to LOVE our bodies (and enjoy eating). Kristen has 20 years experience studying and practicing nutrition to help find the sweet spot where eating is healthy for body, mind, and soul. Connect with Kristen at www.KristenYarker.com

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