New Year’s Resolution
I like starting the year with new goals. After the fun of the holidays I’m ready to work on self improvement. Somehow I often find making a New Year’s resolution seems too big, and perhaps too easy to abandon. If I’m realistic, I’m more likely to stick with small changes.
I started this blog in order to share my success with losing weight through intermittent fasting. Although I only struggled with weight loss for a few years, I couldn’t envision success with the long-term deprivation imposed by conventional diets. I also found all the measuring a little annoying. Nevertheless, I make better choices, because a conventional diet forced me to learn more about nutrition, portions and calories.
A Different Type of Resolution
I have always liked what most people describe as “health food.” I also enjoy desserts, pate, steak frites and cheeseburgers. While too much rich food is obviously unhealthy, the difference between simple and complex carbohydrates took me by surprise. Whole grains do eventually break down into sugar, but because they do so at a slower rate, they are significantly healthier. Replacing foods made with white flour for whole grains was the first and easiest lifestyle change I made.
Most people aren’t surprised to discover that too much sugar leads to weight gain. It’s the amount of sugar in foods that aren’t dessert that is surprising. In fact many packaged products associated with healthy eating, such as yogurt and granola bars are high in sugar. This slideshow highlights the types of products that often have high levels of hidden sugar. Once I was aware of where to look, making better supermarket choices was pretty easy.
Clean out the Pantry
Start the year by throwing out unhealthy foods in the refrigerator and pantry. Stock the shelves with whole grains, fresh fruit and vegetables. Plan some easy homemade snacks like avocado toast or smoothies. Get more ideas on how to maintain your enthusiasm for new lifestyle changes on the post, 5 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Home on The Happy Art of Moving.
Intermittent fasting has become a popular way of losing weight. There are several methods that have proved successful. When I first discovered the concept, it was through the 5/2 Diet (AKA – Alternate Day Fasting,) This plan allows only 500 ( for women) or 600 ( for men) calories a day, on two non-consecutive days a week. On my first blog post, A Healthy Way to Lose Weight, I described my experience with intermittent fasting. It works, but managing hunger is hard at first. Try my 500 Calorie Intermittent Fast Meal Plan. Spreading out the calories made it easier for me adjust. I am now more likely to use the Leangains method, which involves sixteen hours of fasting. This intermittent fast diet plan seems easier because most of the fasting occurs while I am asleep; I just skip breakfast. This Daily Burn article describes three other intermittent fasting methods. Find the approach that will work with your life.