I’m a great believer in adding things in rather than depriving yourself. Does that make you feel more positive about making changes? I hope so.
Early in January here on my Blog, I talked about the Top Tips For Healthy Weight and Boundless Energy. Did it help? Sometimes when we read these things we look at them and think, “I can do that” but we don’t. So this time my tips are to help you to implement at least one of them.
Let’s start with eating to reduce our sugar intake.
And Let’s MAKE IT HAPPEN
It’s a hard time of year and an important one to be nurturing ourselves, however, that needn’t mean indulging ourselves and digging into sweets things. What I’m suggesting is feeding yourself well so that you don’t indulge in the things that don’t serve you, your health, your hormones, your energy and your mood.
TIP NUMBER 1 – Eat Protein
Eat Protein for every meal, yes breakfast included.
Do you skip breakfast and just have a coffee, or grab a cereal bar or a piece of toast and jam?
The energy you feel when you skip breakfast is from cortisol which causes your body to produce sugar for energy, not good. You can eat carbs with your protein, but please, please don’t skip breakfast or eat carbs on their own.
Did you know?
When you skip breakfast or leave out the protein you start the day with a sugar spike, that’s the most common reason for getting tired after lunch and for craving sweet treats. Eating protein slows down the release of the sugars that you’ve eaten and keeps you fuller for longer.
I promise you that eating a protein-packed breakfast will help you to quit sugar so quickly, you’ll be amazed.
But what about Intermittent Fasting?
For those with properly stable blood sugar levels, very little stress, and no issues with insulin resistance: Intermittent fasting may be an option. However, if you are someone who needs coffee, has very low stress levels, has energy slumps and frequently craves sugar then it’s not a great idea for you.
TIP NUMBER 2 – Clever snacking
Snacking can be a stumbling block when trying to quit sugar, but it doesn’t have to be. The key is to decide early in the day when your resolve is stronger and opt for nutrient-rich alternatives. Consider preparing a small snack box at the beginning of the day, ensuring you have healthy options ready when the slump hits.
Decide what it’s going to be earlier in the day and you’ll be less likely to reach for the chocolate bar or that piece of cake.
When you crave sugar in that first week of starting your protein-packed breakfast, go for another protein hit, nuts, toast and peanut butter, carrots and hummus, even a nut bar. If you can stick to that, soon enough you won’t be feeling tired in the afternoon or craving a sweet treat. Lots of my clients have Greek yoghurt with berries and seeds as their afternoon snack.
Several of my clients had problems with snacking either at work or when stopping for fuel for their car. It’s important again to decide what you’re going to have rather than letting it be a subconscious selection.
One suggestion would be to swap your can of Coke and a chocolate bar for a bottle of water, a cup of tea and a nut bar.
If you’re someone who snacks after their evening meal, go for a square of dark chocolate with a few nuts as a dessert and then leave the kitchen and don’t go back! Don’t take snacks to the TV with you, STOP!
TIP NUMBER 3 – Find something else to do
Find things to do when you get stressed or think you’re hungry.
What time is it for you?
- Have a glass of water.
- Go for a walk.
- Talk to a friend.
- Listen to your favourite song, podcast etc.
- Do a 5-minute exercise routine or some yoga, and get moving.
- Go High 5 yourself in the mirror!
TIP NUMBER 4 – Know your why
What is motivating you to quit sugar?
Is it weight loss?
Is it tiredness?
Lack of focus?
Look for your deeper motivation.
Why do you want to lose weight?
- Is it to fit into a particular item of clothing?
- Is it for a holiday?
- Is it for your health?
Why do you want more energy?
- Is it to go out in the evenings?
- Is it for better work performance?
- Is it because you’re knackered all the time and you want to be able to exercise more?
- Is it to spend time with family and friends?
What about lack of focus?
- Do you need to perform better at work?
- Are you wanting to write a book?
- Do you want a pay rise?
- Are you keen to read more?
These are just suggestions for you, I hope you get the idea, spending some time on your WHY is a really important part of sticking to a plan, so sit down and give yourself the time and space to find out. It’s worth it, I promise.
TIP NUMBER 5 – Clear out the sugar at home
Your surroundings play a really key role in your ability to quit sugar successfully. So take a look at home, where do you keep sweet treats? Do you have a special place?
Find and remove sources of sugar or move them so that your thought process is interrupted when you go to the drawer or cupboard. Creating a sugar-free zone at home makes a difference and having them for your kids is no excuse for me I’m afraid, find something else for them to have, make them a sandwich, and leave carrot sticks and hummus in the fridge for them, then you can do the same.
How to Make It Happen:
Check food labels for hidden sugars and gradually replace sugary items with healthier alternatives. Stock up on whole foods like vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. This creates an environment where making sugar-free choices becomes easier. Remember, out of sight, out of mind!
Keep a bowl of apples or pears on your kitchen counter or a container of cut vegetables and some hummus in the fridge for easy, healthy snacking. Be sure to have nuts in the cupboard as well. Having these options readily available makes it more likely that you’ll reach for a nutritious and healthier choice when hunger strikes.
These things need to be done one step at a time so we can make them part of our day-to-day life not just a fad for a few days or weeks, so my next blog will be about tips for drinking! When and how much depending on your tipple!
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