Low carb. Low fat. Low sugar. Wheat free. Meat free. Dairy Free. Vegetarian. Vegan. Pescatarian. Intermittent fasting. Paleo. Macrobiotic………..There are numerous diets out there at the moment, with more cropping up on a daily basis. Some are featured in magazines; Some are endorsed by the medical profession; others are endorsed by celebrity slimmers. For us mere mortals, it can all be a little baffling to say the least. With each diet comes a raft of supporters who all claim that this is THE diet. If you follow this one, you will finally shed your excess pounds. You will sprout long, lithe limbs. Your skin will clear up and glow. Your hair and nails will stop breaking and shine like glitter. You will be able to complete a marathon in record time. You will prove that you are committed to saving the world…… you get the picture!
The truth of the matter is that If you’re looking for big sweeping changes that are going to have long lasting, life changing consequences, then I hate to tell you, but there is NO QUICK FIX that is going to work. Complete physical and mental remodelling takes a lot of time, effort, dedication and money. And the most soul destroying part of it is that studies have shown that over 95% of dieters will regain their weight within 1-5 years. That’s a pretty depressing stat eh?! All of that effort for such a short period of basking rights. Believe me, I KNOW first hand how soul destroying the rollercoaster feels.
But, here’s the thing……. There is a quick fix way of making your mind and body feel better. It may not provide you with a slack jawed audience who marvel at your amazing duckling to swan transformation, but it will make you feel all glowy inside and have some amazing long term advantages to your health! Are ready for the secret??? Come a bit closer and I’ll whisper it into your shell-like………………
Drink more water and eat more veg!!! Ta-daaaaaaaah!!!
No wait, come back!!!
I know you’ve heard it all before, but really, it does work. Here’s the thing, if, 3 years ago, you’d have asked me about my veg consumption, I’d have said “yeah, but the thing is, I don’t really like veg!” and it was true. Because in my mind, veg was one of two things: 1) a salad comprised of iceberg lettuce, some tomatoes and a few slices of cucumber OR 2) some soggy carrot battons and a mound of overdone cabbage. Hell, it’s hardly surprising I didn’t like veg right?!!! So what’s changed? Well, I’ve more or less stopped eating meat and and when you do that, you really do have to make peace with veg! Although to be honest with you, with the current trend towards all things “clean eating”, the supermarkets are making it pretty damn easy. Just a super speedy jaunt into any Tesco, Sainsburys or Waitrose and you will find all manner of ready prepared fab veg opportunities. From cauli rice and courgette spaghetti, to steam in the bag combos of the best green selections our fields have to offer, I have truly embraced the ready prepped veg aisle recently. On at least 3 days of the week I will make myself a dinner or lunch that looks something like this:
Not the most photogenic of dishes, admittedly, but we’re not all about the looks round here!
Melt a little coconut oil, stir fry the aforementioned veg (I know lots of them are specifically prepared to be microwave ready, but I don’t have a micro so I have to get a bit creative!), pair it with a roast sweet potato/ some mashed avocado with chilli and lime/ some cooked quinoa/ a carton of black beans cooked with spinach and tomato puree/ ANYTHING ELSE THAT IS QUICK AND EASY AND TAKES YOUR FANCY, and you’re good to go. Super fast, super tasty food that makes your taste buds cheer with delight, your cells zing and your mind burst with pride at how super – humanly healthy and brilliant you’ve been. I’ve also started adding some of pre prepared frozen fruit and veg combos to my morning smoothies. We all know that when you have kids/a job/ any semblance of a normal life, speed and ease is where its at and in my mind all of these new fruit and veg offerings are a brilliantly helpful shortcut for ensuring that we get plenty of the good stuff down our necks. Whoop!
And when it comes to good old H2O, here are my secret weapons of choice:
Yup, a cheap (I think it was £6) BPA free drinking bottle from Sainos and a water filter jug! I know it sounds a little sad, but as well as the added health benefits, filling up from the water filter rather than the tap makes drinking water feel a little more refined and special. I do realise that for most people, it probably seems a little ridiculous but I can honestly say that since buying the filter about 6 months ago, my daily water consumption has shot up. Added to which, I know that my snazzy pink water bottle holds 800ml so if I drink 3 refills per day, I’m onto a winner. I carry it with me wherever I go, sip throughout the day and bob’s your uncle, before you know it I am a well hydrated bunny, a tag which carries with it innumerable health benefits (helps digestion, treats headaches and migraines, flushes out toxins etc).
So there you have it, a couple of really simple tips which can help you to feel ultra healthy and virtuous!