There may be light at the end of the tunnel with an easing of lockdown restrictions and some sort of a summer in sight! So, if you're like many of us and have developed some rather unhealthy habits during lockdown, there's no time like the present to start looking to get back to a healthy routine.
Our nutritionist Niamh is here to give you some tips for adopting small daily habits over the next few weeks that will help to kickstart your health regime for the summer ahead. Small sustainable changes can easily turn into long term success before you know it and lead to overall improved health and wellbeing!
Understanding your WHY
Before you do anything with building healthy habits, you need a good reason as to why you want to build them in the first place or the changes will never stick. So, dig deep and figure out what your Why is. Maybe you’ve a wedding coming up that you want to lose weight for or maybe you just want to feel good for that summer staycation you have planned - we all have a WHY and its important to identify that why so that you have a good reason to ditch the bad habits and adopt better ones!
You wouldn’t run a marathon if you’ve never run a mile, so apply that same logic to your eating habits. Don’t try and
get rid of all the bad habits in one go. Start with just one healthy habit and then build on that by adding one more, and then one more after that until you’ve created a strong foundation for healthy eating. Be careful not to berate yourself or think that one mistake “blows” a whole day’s worth of healthy habits. You can do it! It just takes one day at a time!
Clear out your cupboards
As the saying goes “Out of sight, out of mind”. This is critical especially now that we are spending so much time at home and the kitchen is a few steps away from our workspace! Clear our your cupboards and try replacing the packets of biscuits with high protein snacks that you enjoy and that will actually curb your hunger and provide nutritional value such as nuts, wholegrain crackers and hummus, a variety of fruit.
Ditch the mid-week drinking
Many of us have found we are consuming more alcohol mid-week during lockdown. According to Drinkaware, 25% of Irish people have reported drinking more during lockdown with 14% drinking four or more times during the week.
This may simply be down to boredom or for others its may be a coping mechanism in the face of an extremely stressful situation.
If you found yourself pouring a glass of wine when you are experiencing common lockdown emotions such as boredom or anxiety, try to find a different activity to do instead. You may find a quick walk, yoga class or phone call with a friend might help you feel better!
A small change such as not putting alcohol into your shopping trolley during the weekly grocery shop could be a very effective way to break the habit- if it’s not in the house you won’t be tempted!
Get up from your desk
While lockdown restrictions may be easing, it looks like working from home is here to stay. While there are so many benefits to this new way of working, it has also led to an increased sedentary lifestyle for many. From speaking to our clients, it seems that sitting at the desk all day without getting any movement in is one of the biggest struggles! Why not start the habit this week of getting some exercise in every day at your lunch break- now that the weather is getting nicer a daily brisk 15/20 minute walk in the sunshine would do you the world of good!
Drink more water
regularly sip on throughout the day. Maybe set a reminder on your phone so that every day at a certain time you get an alert to drink some water, you’re much more likely to stay on target if you have the activity scheduled ahead of time!Aim to drink a full glass of water when you get up in the morning and have a water bottle at your desk that you can
Try drinking water with your meals instead of teas/coffee. In fact, The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has recently made a specific key recommendation that people aged over the age of 65 should avoid drinking tea with their meals as tea can inhibit the absorption of many important nutrients including calcium, iron and zinc. If you are a tea-drinker, try to drink it between meals rather than with your meal.
Be prepared and plan your meals
Being prepared, mentally and physically is the make or break of a new habit so let us help you with your meal plan so that you have one less thing to worry about.
Book in for a nutrition consultation with us and we’ll help you to break those unhealthy habits and get started on a healthy eating regime!