By Nutritionist Steph Wearne
A large part of what I do is help people lose weight. Majority of these people come to see me and say they ARE eating healthy but just aren't getting results. As soon as I hear this I know exactly what's going on. Their perception of healthy is a bit different to a Nutritionists definition of healthy. These days we hear so many claims about what is healthy and what isn't I can't imagine what a mind game this is for most people. However what I have found is there are 5 main habits that are constantly considered healthy by my clients, but the truth is these habits are only holding them back. Yes we can indulge sometimes (this is what we call 80/20) but if you're serious about losing weight, it's time to ditch these 5 habits.
1. Forgetting the moderation rule - even if it is healthy!
Unfortunately that old rule of moderation can't be ignored! Foods like nuts, seeds, avocado and coconut oil are fantastic in terms of nutrient density and are definitely foods I encourage my clients to eat. However not when you're adding almonds, flaxseeds, coconut oil and avocado to your breakfast, lunch and dinner and then snacking on cashews and protein balls in between. Keep these foods in moderation and you will get enough of the essential nutrients without overdoing it on the energy front.
2. Eating well during the week, and then slipping up on the weekend.
Let's be honest, when does your weekend start? Friday after work for drinks? Friday lunch time? Or even Thursday night because it's pretty much the weekend right? Well let's do some math then...Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, maybe Thursday you eat healthy...Friday Saturday and Sunday you don't. It's going to be a looooong journey to weight loss if this is the rate your going! Consistency is the key. One of the first challenges I get my clients to work on is weekends, if you can get those two days in check the results won't be far away!
3. Allowing yourself to indulge because you've exercised.
I can't tell you how often people have the mindset that exercise is an excuse for a nutrient poor food choice. You cannot lose weight if you don't address your food intake, no matter how much exercise you do. Period! Consider exercise as a way to shape your body, improve your fitness and cardiovascular risk factors and reduce stress,...but it is not the be all and end all of weight loss if you can commit to changing your diet and it certainly doesn't give you a free pass to that coffee and muffin on your way home from the gym!
4. Skipping a meal to cheat the system.
Wouldn't it be great if there was a way to cheat the system? Well trust me if there was I'd tell you about it! Skipping a meal does not mean less calories for the day and subsequently weight loss. It messes with your blood sugar levels, your energy, your nutrient intake, and causes cravings. In most instances if people have skipped a meal they tend to overeat at the next meal anyway. It's also likely that the next meal isn't your healthiest choice because by that stage your blood sugar levels are low and you are lacking energy so you are craving sugar or refined carbohydrates. So don't fool yourself, eat regular meals that leave you feeling satisfied but not full.
5. Choosing a wrap or sushi when you're on the run and haven't planned a healthy meal.
These are the two most common options people tend to go for when on the run and clients always say to me 'they're not that bad are they? Well besides the fact that you can never be sure of exactly what is in your wrap or sushi roll, yes, they're not as bad as a burger and fries. However they're also nowhere near as good as a hearty, wholefood meal made from home. Don't settle for second best if it's not something you would eat at home. Be prepared with your meals and snacks and stop convincing yourself that these 'healthy' options on the run are okay. I bet they wouldn't be showing up in your Nutritionists food diary!
If you think your eating could do with some help from Steph, Linked is running their next Nutrition Program (Beach Bods) starting on 10th November. It is a four week clean eating program with delicious whole food recipes to get you feeling great before Summer. Click here for more details.