A rocky start…
My New Year’s Resolution this year was to eat healthier. It didn’t work out. By the second day of January I was back to scoffing every chocolate and baked goods in sight. Well, they were left over from Christmas so who else was gonna eat them?!
Time went on and apart from the odd “healthy week” that I committed to, I was pretty much eating just as badly as normal. I wouldn’t say I’m super unhealthy or anything. Junk food tends to be an occasional treat and I try to keep on top of my sugar and saturated fat consumption. But I know that there’s more I could be doing to be healthy.
I’m really into watching food documentaries at the moment, and I’m starting to get back into exercising (were gym memberships always this expensive?!). I also attended the Balance Festival in London a few weekends ago and that really gave me the kick up the butt I needed to get my diet into gear!
Easy changes for big results!
What I noticed most since not eating very well is that I was. SO. TIRED. You really “are what you eat”, and the more stodgy food I was eating the stodgier I felt! My skin had also become blemished. My hair and nails were dry and splitting. I just generally looked and felt bleurgh. Since making a few easy changes I’ve already noticed massive results in how I look and feel. Although I can’t promise any medical miracles for you, I can say that in my experience these changes have made a big impact on me. Here they are…
1) Drink more water
Ok, don’t groan at me! I know you’ve heard this a zillion times and it’s what every celeb tells the glossy mags. But it’s so true, and I wish I had taken more notice sooner. How much water you need to drink a day depends on lots of things, but it’s certainly more than a bit of juice in the morning and a couple of hot drinks! Pure water with no additives is best to keep hydrated because the body can use it much more readily. I’ve heard both theories that frequent sipping is ideal, and that having one long drink every hour is even better. However you do it, just drink up! My dry skin seems to be fed from the inside now and my blemishes are almost all gone. If you, like me, always seem to forget to keep hydrated and rarely track your intake try investing in a water bottle that will keep you motivated. One of my favourites is a tracker bottle by HydrateM8 in a jumbo 900ml size. It has markers on the side to let you know how much you should have drunk at different time intervals – genius! Find it here.
2) Cut out sugar
A couple of years ago, the I Quit Sugar craze was everywhere. Sarah Wilson’s program helped 1.5 million people get off sugar, and I begun reading into the sugar scare and how to get off it. I had tried a few sugar substitutes but many had an odd after taste that I couldn’t get on board with. At the Balance Festival in London I had the pleasure in meeting the founder of Natvia, an Australian company that produces sugar-free sweeteners and Nutvia a tasty sugar-free Nutella-style spread that tastes delicious! I was really impressed that it had none of that horrid bitter after taste I hated, but had a really nice natural sugar flavour. Because it is made from natural sources and contains no sugar, it doesn’t have any affect on your blood sugar levels. This means I don’t have to face the slump after a sugar high! Unbelievably, since cutting out sugar I’ve had more energy and my skin has improved. Find out more about Natvia here.
3) Take plant-based protein
I heard so much about the benefits of increasing protein in your diet, especially to supplement your body as it recovers from a workout. But I’d also heard that any protein from an animal source can have side effects and can be hard to digest. At the Balance Festival, I took a sample of a vegan protein shake called The Health One by Innermost and starting walking away with it thinking it would be just like all the other protein shakes I had sampled that day. I was wrong, and I circled back. Firstly, it was the best tasting drink me and my friend had tasted throughout the festival. Secondly, it was super light on the tummy because it contained all natural, plant based ingredients that are easy to stomach. Thirdly, it also contained a host of other nutrients, vitamins, and minerals to boost your wellbeing which made it an attractive choice for someone like me who wants lots of benefits in one product. It contains nothing artificial, but also no aspartame (a big thumbs up from me). Ok, so it isn’t the cheapest protein powder I’ve seen, but it isn’t the most expensive either. Once you taste it you’ll know it was worth it. Find it here.
I hope you’ve enjoyed finding out what has helped me be healthier recently!
Which swaps or additions have you made to your diet that have helped you?