Before I start with today's post, I want to thank you all for an incredible support that I received from you after the publication of my weight loss story last week. You gave me great motivation to continue to write honestly and without restraint. I must admit, it was not easy to open up and tell my story. When I hit "Publish" button that day, I got scared. But when I began to receive messages and support from you, and when I saw how much it moved you, fear was gone. I want you to know that I appreciate your every like, share and comment, every kind word and message. Do not forget that! :)
I promised to give you guidance on how to start a healthy lifestyle and change your life for the better. Maybe some of you now expect me to throw out some magic formula or to sell you some secret pill that will solve all your piled up problems. I understand how you feel. I also fantasized about the magic pill that will magically erase my huge appetite, melt my excess fat and make me healthy overnight. Sorry to tell you, but there is no magic pill you can buy and just swallow and everything will be ok. The truth is, you are that magic pill, but it needs a bit of work to start things up. All starts in our heads, and I'm here as a living proof that IT CAN BE DONE! So, today I'll share with you first steps that I made and how I started living a healthy lifestyle.
Like I said, healthy eating is not some short term diet - it's a lifestyle. Healthy eating doesn't mean you have to sacrifice anything, to starve yourself. It just means you have to remove all unhealthy food from your diet and incorporate healthier eating habits. You have to start eating real food, healthy nutritious food. Why? Well simply because unhealthy food is bad for your body.
I quit refined sugar, and I like it
So the first thing that I did, I toss out refined sugar from my diet. That decision was a pure pleasure (I always secretly hated sugar), but in the same time, it was a real hell in the beginning. I went trough cold turkey like a true addict (I'll write about that experience on my blog). White (and brown) sugar or sucrose is a substance that is proved to be addictive, like nicotine, drugs, and alcohol. Refined sugar doesn't have nutritional value at all. Besides that, it's very harmful to human health and causes many diseases. I substitute unhealthy refined sugar with healthier sugars - honey and syrups (agave, rice), but I use it now in moderate amount. You wondering how I endure "cravings for sweets"? Simply. When I want to eat something sweet, instead of eating a whole bunch of store bought cookies full of unhealthy sugars, I eat fruits that are nutritious and healthy and enriched with other nutrients like fiber, minerals and vitamins.
Water is the BEST drink ever
The second thing I did, I quit drinking all sugary drinks. It was logical step to do since sugary drinks are full of unhealthy sugars, right?! So I stopped drinking Coca-cola, Sprite, Cola, all store bought juices, even flavored waters all drinks that contain refined sugar. And when I say all, I mean ALL. And what is left when you remove all sugary drinks from your life? A pure and simple water! But I was a sugar addict who didn't like to drink plain old boring water, so, in the beginning, It was hard, It was a struggle. To keep myself hydrated during that period, I started making my flavored water - infused water. I just added a few drops of lemon or lime juice to my water bottle, or I tossed sliced orange, strawberries or kiwi to my jar. It was refreshing and great, and soon I got used to drinking plain water. And I never consider sugary drinks again.
White bread - no thank you!
Next on my "naughty list" was white bread. Actually, I throw out ALL bakery products made with white refined flour - white bread, pastries, croissants, puff pastry. White bread is made of highly processed simple carbohydrate - white flour - which not only has no nutritional value, but it cause inflammation and many diseases. Despite their bad reputation in the dieting world, carbohydrates are our bodies preferred source of fuel. So I incorporated whole-wheat grains in my diet that are packed with nutrients, including protein, fibers, B vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals.
I eat in moderation, I eat balanced
The essential part of healthy eating is to eat in moderation and to have a balanced diet. So I reduced the amount of food I eat, and I started consuming foods from all five categories daily - whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, proteins, dairy, healthy fats and sugars. It took me some time to learn how to eat in a new healthier way, but it was not something so hard to do. My body adjusted quickly to the new regime. Our bodies are smarter than we think ;) Soon I started to feel better and to have more energy which motivated me even more.
These feet are made for walking
Tossing out unhealthy refined sugar, quitting drinking sodas and sugary drinks, throwing out all bakery products made with refined white flour and changing my eating habits was the best thing I did. Sounded awful in the beginning but truly it changed my life - for not only better but AMAZING. With more energy I started to move more, go to daily walks, practice power walking and yoga. That's when I began to lose serious weight which made me feel even better, even more motivated. I restored back my confidence. I felt good about myself. I started to enjoy every new day. Our body are meant to move. We need to be physically active. Regular moderate physical activity contributes to our health. So find time for some physical activity.
You may think that these changes are strict or too drastic. You may think that you are giving up on so many things, that you have to sacrifice. But think about it - what are those things you giving up? You're throwing away unhealthy stuff that damages your health, and you introduce healthy foods and healthy habits which will make you feel better and healthier. Yes, it is kind of hard at the beginning. But you need to be determined and persistent. Think about what you will gain, what you will restore - your happy life and your health. Find your own way to make the changes, but DO IT!
[Tweet "If you change nothing, nothing will change. Do you agree?! #healthy #healthlifestyle"]
You need little motivation or support?! Let me know in the comments or send me an email using the form. I love to help, and I sure love to chat ;)
This is just the beginning of what I will share with you in my upcoming posts, so stay tuned ;) Sign up for my VIP list and I'll send you a notice when I write something new. You can also follow me on my Facebook page and Instagram. If you use Snapchat, add me ;)