There are countless quick-fix solutions out there, none of these are particularly healthy and almost all of these options entail deprivation! That is exactly the reason so many of us who are trying to slim down struggle with fluctuating weight levels, often for the better part of our lives. Doing what we’ve always done, gives us what we’ve always gotten. So why do we all keep making the same mistakes over and over again? The answer is simple, the changes imposed upon our eating and lifestyle habits are simply not sustainable. Therein lays the golden rule to success to build a healthy family, because any steps we take to improve our eating and lifestyle habits must be attainable in order to make them sustainable.
1. You can start by considering your attitude towards food. Can you remember when you first began to struggle with your weight? Identify what factors have contributed to your poor eating habits, and what steps you have taken to address your weight issues. These are very important matters to consider, and these should be addressed at the start of any weight loss program. The reason for this is that it helps you to develop a better understanding of your eating habits, and you can identify your weaknesses, your potential pitfalls and the type of relationship you have with food. It is hard to cope with these temptations without the enlightened knowledge of where your problems originate.
2. Step two is to step up your exercise routine, especially during the high risk periods. No one really feels like exercising during the holidays or festive seasons, but there are ways to keep some kind of exercise routine going during these times. And if you are just bored with exercising, you are less likely to keep it up at all, so make it interesting for you and your family. Start by introducing new activities, like brisk fun walks or jogs along the beach, take an early morning swim or have a few tennis games with friends or family. This way every one can participate and enjoy the fun, and you get a healthy family.
3. Get yourself organized by having a plan of action. You would not tackle an important work project without a plan of action would you? So why treat your weight and your families health any differently? If snack tables are your weakness, then eat a healthy meal before hand and avoid the snack area completely. Too much alcohol is also very bad for you for several reasons, it ups your calories and carries the additional risk of reducing your will power when you need it most. And what’s more, binge drinkers are twice as likely to develop STD’s, so I assume food is sure to lose the battle too. Manage you problem foods by banishing them from your pantry, and only limit them to special occasions, but even better yet, rather try and find low fat alternatives instead.
4. A very important point that we should all remember, no matter what is to not skip meals. You run the risk of over-indulging later on. We have heard this countless times, and we all agree by now that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but do you know that skipping breakfast causes you to consume more during the day? This holds true for young and old, so the whole family should start the day with a healthy breakfast, then we are well on our way to build a healthy happy family. Start your day the right way with a healthy breakfast, and follow it through with your regular meals and snacks.
5. Identify your food personality, and that of your family as well. Comfort eating is a case in point. Mindless eating is another trait that steadily leads to weight gain, as does impulse eating. For example seeing a snack in the store, and then purchasing it for immediate consumption without even thinking about it, especially for the children in the family. Identify your personality and put definite steps in place to help you make smart choices to action weaknesses before they get the upper hand.
6. Keep a food journal. By writing down everything you eat and drink, you will be amazed at how much goes into your mouth. Putting this in black and white somehow makes it more real. People who keep a food journal are more likely to control the amount of food and what they eat. Then make water your drink of choice, after all it is free and also helps with weight loss.
Food is a gift. Meals celebrate occasions. By allowing food to dominate our existence leads to unhealthy weight gain and unhappiness and an unhealthy family.
Then with every small success, whether it be you or a family member, celebrate your success. Weight loss is a journey that takes time, structure and commitment. By celebrating your milestones along the way, you acknowledge your hard work and this motivates you to keep going and build a healthy happy family.