10 SIMPLE HEALTH TIPS
Forget diets. Try these 10 simple health tips!
1) Drink water - and lots of it. Hot water and lemon, fruit infusion water, chilled filter water - these are all great ways to increase your water intake. Make it your mission to drink at least 2 litres a day. Drinking water helps keep you full, energized and extra focused. To help remind yourself to drink up, keep a water bottle at your desk, or set reminders on your phone!
2) Choose one thing only - no one likes restriction diets, but weigh up your day and choose wisely about what you’re going to consume. For instance - are you going to have lemonade, a cake, or a hot chocolate (opposed to having all 3!) Even if you’re going to go down the fast food route you can opt for water with your big Mac meal opposed to washing it down with a coke which is an equivalent to 8.5 tea spoons of sugar. You wouldn’t let a child have crisps, sweets and ice-cream all in the same day - so apply the same principal to yourself!
3) Fill up on nutrients - there's going to be times when you’re invited somewhere that doesn't cater to your healthy eating plan, but there is a way to make these situations more bearable by filling up first! For example - I often have to go to the Chinese restaurants with my family (and it would be rude for me to sit there not eating) so before I leave the house I eat raw carrots, peppers and such things - or I drink a green smoothie including nutrient dense items like kale, spinach, avocado and a pear - that way I’m lining my digestive system with super goodness first (and also filling myself up a bit so I don’t over indulge at the restaurant) I’ll explain the digestive process in a future blog and talk about how this helps everything move nicely through the digestive system.
4) Eat light to heavy - this is a similar principle to number 3. Think you’re being healthy having a fruit salad after your main meal? Think again - as your probably doing more harm than good - and this is all related to how your digestive system breaks downs food. For example - a banana takes approx 45 minutes to pass through the stomach. Starches remain in the stomach a few hours, and proteins even longer as they are the slowest moving and take most work to break down. Having fruit for dessert creates a bloating internal mess. The fruit is fermented by the time it reaches the intestines, where we need to absorb its nutrients, but now, there are barely any nutrients left to absorb.
The same applies to our vegetables. So next time you’re eating a roast chicken dinner – start by eating all your veggies first – honestly you will notice a difference and you will absorb the nutrients a lot better.
5) Cook with coconut oil – I could rant all day about coconut oil and all its uses (actually I have already done that on a previous blog – click here Coconut Oil) but one simple way to clean up your meals is by cooking in coconut oil. Coconut oil is very different from most other cooking oils and contains a unique composition of fatty acids. The fatty acids are about 90% saturated. This makes coconut oil highly resistant to oxidation at high heats. For this reason, it is the perfect oil for high-heat cooking methods like frying
6) Don’t start your day with sugar – I literally die inside when I see people having sugar for breakfast (my little brothers do and it bugs me so much – only because I care about their health) Special K, sugary cereals like granola, muffins, toast with nutella on, latte’s etc – all is a big NO NO! Don’t worry if you currently do though – it is a common mistake people make with their typical breakfast foods, most of which are highly processed and loaded with sugars! They satiate your current hunger but set you up for metabolic disasters and fuel excess body fat and obesity –related diseases. I could go on and on about sugar and it’s dangers but I will save that for a future blog!
7) Keep healthy snacks close by – we all love to graze on foods in between meals or on the evenings when we are cosy by the fire watching a film. That is fine, actually it is encouraged to snack between meals as it increases your metabolism but only if the snacks are good ones and obviously I don’t mean snack all day (maybe something small mid morning, or afternoon) Almond nuts, sliced apple, dark chocolate,banana, rice cakes and avocados, protein balls etc – are all good to go to snacks for when you’re feeling slightly peckish.
8) Prep your meals – thinking ahead can really help you with your healthy eating goals. Think about what you want to eat for the following week and if your lifestyle is really busy – prep some meals and freeze them away ready to take for work. It doesn’t have to be complicated. For instance I batch cook my husband’s meals and I make things like beef chilli and quinoa, or chicken, quinoa and veg! Quick and simple – and it stops him from being tempted to grab something from the countless takeaways over the road from where he works!
9) Add Veggies to everything – there’s not a day that goes by where I don’t think about my veggie intake, and if I get to the end of the day and I realise I haven’t had much (if none), I will knock myself together a quick green smoothie to ensure my body is getting some vital nutrients! Veggies can literally go into anything (sweet potato and spinach curry, kale smoothies, broccoli soups) there’s so many ways to get veggies into your diet!
10) Affirmations – now this can be done in less than 30 seconds. It doesn’t necessarily have to be true for you at this present time but affirming your health goals and visualising where you want to be is really effective. For example, ‘I am strong, lean, healthy and happy,’ ‘I am fit, energetic and focused’ – some people say them out loud or others have images of body types they may strive for. Keep the goal alive in your mind and believe you can get there! An affirmation opens the door. It’s a beginning point on the path to change. In essence, you’re saying to your subconscious mind: “I am taking responsibility. I am aware that there is something I can do to change.” When I talk about doing affirmations, I mean consciously choosing words that will either help eliminate something from your life or help create something new in your life.
I hope these tips are useful and that you can incorporate at least a few of them into your day to day life!