The Weight Loss Mind Set
Weight loss can be confusing, but it needn’t be. Ignore the fad diets and focus on eating real food, and your body will thank you. With the launch of our new Fresh Start meal delivery service, I thought it would be a good opportunity to share my top 5 ‘tips’ on how to get into a good weight loss mindset, to help you on your journey…
- Change your mindset to the glass is half full. Think about what foods you need to add for health instead of subtract. Diets make you feel guilty about indulging in something you shouldn’t have. When you take a positive approach and include all the things your body needs to be nourished, it leaves very little room for the less healthy things. Take a few seconds before you choose a food to ask yourself if it is useful to you, i.e. does it provide lots of useful nutrients? One of my favourite things to have each day to boost my nutrient intake is my Everyday Green Smoothie – it’s delicious, and I know it is doing so much good for my body!
- Eat Nude Food. Nude Food is food that comes from the ground, sea and sky (not the highly- processed stuff in packets!). It goes off if its not refrigerated and has a limited shelf life – think of all your fresh produce! This type of food is not the enemy ever; it is what loves you the most and looks after you! It’s the food we are designed to eat, and is what our body’s recognise as food and can digest easily. These foods are nutrient-dense, providing the most bang for buck in terms of the nutrients they contain for their amount of calories. Instead of trying to decipher food labels and being fooled by health claims, make healthy eating simple by buying minimally processed food.
- Count nutrients, not numbers. This applies to calories, grams of fat, carbohydrates, and the number on the bathroom scales. If you want to count something, count the nutrients you’re getting by making sure you’re ‘ticking off’ all the food groups you need every day. I recommend people don’t weight themselves more than every 3-4 weeks as it’s important to turn your attention towards focusing on nutrition rather than weight. It’s only once you’re in a relaxed, happy (and healthy body) state that you will start to shift weight. Your food choices should be based on whether they provide useful nutrition, not their amount of calories. Measure your success by what healthy eating and exercise habits you have created. You’ll find weight loss will be a by-product of these habits later down the track. The number on the scales can sabotage your efforts and motivation, and is completely irrelevant to begin with.
- Be ready, prepared, and organised. Be ready for setbacks. They will happen. But so what? It’s what you do most of the time that makes a difference, not what happens once in a while. Don’t let little setbacks actually set you back. Planning your meals in advance means there is less chance that you’ll end up with takeaways after a long day. Fresh Start, the new weight loss range from My Food Bag helps with this, providing you with dinner or lunch and dinner for the week. You’ll get meals that are all under 450 calories, made with lean protein, lower in carbohydrates, no refined-sugars and heaps of veggies to help you hit your weight loss goals. It doesn’t get much easier than that! Use Sunday to create a healthy schedule for the week including what you’ll have for breakfast, lunch and dinner each day, as well as what exercise you’ll do (even if it’s just a walk around the block). Put your plan somewhere that you’ll see it often to ensure you stick to it. A great breakfast option that you can prepare on Sunday for the week ahead is my Avocado Super Smoothie with Berries and Spinach. Freeze portions of the berries, spinach and diced avocado flesh in zip-lock bags then simply blitz up with water each morning. These Banana Bran Muffins are perfect for a healthy afternoon snack that you can freeze, ready for when you need them!
- Listen to your body and eat with awareness. You need to work with your body, not force it, as it knows best what it needs. This means you need to eat when you are hungry (i.e. don’t starve yourself), sleep when you are tired, and stop an exercise if it hurts. Its good to push yourself out of your comfort zone, but only in ways that are kind to your body and rejuvenate it to make you feel energised; not tired, grumpy or injured. Mindful eating means consciously stopping for a few seconds to think if you really need this snack or second helping, catching you before you automatically put it in your mouth – it helps if you put everything you eat on a plate (even if its just one small biscuit), rather than eating it straight from a packet! Slow down when you eat. Take the time to chew your food well and eat slowly over at least 15-20 minutes. This allows enough time to stimulate your digestive system to release the stomach acid and enzymes needed to break down food in your gut so it can move along and be absorbed more easily. If you’re a fast eater, I suggest you simply practice putting your knife and fork down between each bite and chewing at least 20 times before swallowing (yes, count until you get used to how mashed up your food should be). Another important reason for eating more slowly is that it takes approximately 20 minutes for the hormone Leptin to signal to your brain that you are full, so by eating fast you will over-eat.
For more information on the Fresh Start meal delivery service which delivers recipes and ingredients for people who want to lose weight (or just be that extra bit healthier), check out the website here. All the meals are under 450 calories, lower in carbohydrates and are refined sugar-free.
To be doing what I am today is a dream come true. It all started when I was 12 years old. I was watching TV after school one day and Jamie Oliver was cooking up a storm on The Naked Chef.