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Fitness & Wellness

How To Eat Healthy Without Depriving Yourself

I love all the enthusiasm at the Worx in Alexandria, VA. People come here to achieve fitness goals that are as different as each person is. However, in order to reach each goal, there is a common thread. It’s all about what you eat, besides how much you workout. Most people hate restrictions on their eating habits. It makes them feel hungry and deprived. Wouldn’t you like to learn to eat healthy without depriving yourself? There’s a way you can do it.

Start by identifying unhealthy food you eat and find ways to make them healthier.

You may think that some food, like that giant chocolate seven layer cake with thick frosting, simply can’t be made healthier, but it can. Focus on the unhealthy foods you like and ways to make them healthier. If you like sour cream on your baked potato, consider switching to Greek yogurt instead. It’s a small calorie savings, but increases the nutrient count, too. Consider switching out fried food for baked food, substituting applesauce for oil or sugar in baked goods, like that chocolate cake or substituting vegetables for pasta, such as spaghetti squash or zucchini lasagna.

Learn to eat mindfully.

I have a client who is lucky enough that she can consume almost anything without gaining weight, and she eats a lot of junk. When she came to me about eating healthier, she told me that she wanted to eat healthier to feel better and look better. Yes, if you want to build muscle tissue, you need a healthy diet. It’s not all about weight loss. She said when she bought a package of pastries or cookies, she always ate the whole package in a few minutes. That’s when I knew she had to learn to eat mindfully to get a healthy diet. Eating mindfully is all about savoring each bite. Rather than tossing a handful of M&Ms into your mouth, eat just one and savor the flavor. Identify every minute of enjoyment. You won’t eat as many and never feel deprived.

Take a pause while you’re eating.

Just like mindful eating, slowing the process of a meal is also important. Make more conversation at the table. Pause for a while, rather than shoveling food in your mouth just to finish. Chew…endlessly chew. The more you chew, the more you’re helping your digestive system and giving your body a chance to catch up to the feeling of fullness. Push your plate away a little earlier at each meal, so your level of comfortable fullness comes quicker.

  • Be aware of each time you eat. Are you doing it when you’re hungry or just out of boredom. If it’s boredom, have a go-to response. Some people take a short walk, even if they’re inside, find the best way for you to break your cycle.
  • You can make yourself more aware of food consumption by writing down every time you eat, even if it’s a little nibble. You can even add a note about your emotions at the time to help you identify why you eat.
  • When you’re hungry, first drink an eight ounce bottle or glass of water. Not only is it filling, often people mistake thirst for hunger.
  • Plan a healthy menu for the week, including snacks and make a grocery list. Cook all the weekly meals at once. It will help you stick with a healthy menu and avoid unhealthy snacking. The meals will be ready to heat and eat so you won’t have to stop for fast food if you’re tired.

For more information, contact us today at The Worx

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