When you clicked on the link to this article you might have been thinking: “finally! The answer I’ve been waiting for” and that’s exactly what I’m going to give you. The solution to the age old question, how do I eat healthier?
Tuning into what your body is telling you gives you the opportunity to take your health to the next level
As a Health Coach and someone who is pretty active, I frequently get asked what my day of food and meals looks like, so I’m tempted to just write out a day in my life and leave it at that. Unfortunately it’s not that simple, and I have to answer your question with a question…
What makes you feel good? Life would be a lot easier if we could just eat the same things to feel and look the good, but that’s just not the case. There are so many variables that determine our dietary needs.
For instance, if you go for a 10-mile run or hit up Soul Cycle before work, your diet throughout the day is going to look a lot different than someone who doesn’t exercise or went to yoga. Even things like our cultural background, blood type, how much water we drink, and our mindset affect how we should be fueling our day.
Source: Hello Glow
Good thing I have a super simple way for you to investigate and determine your dietary needs at home. I learned this trick when I studied to at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and use it whenever I need to reassess my health.
Here it is, in just four simple steps! You’ll need a pen and some paper or the notes app on your phone:
- Every day for 7 days plan to eat various meals
- Write down how you feel immediately after eating
- 2 hours later write down how you’re feeling
- Assess what made you feel great and what made you feel lousy and start incorporating more of those things and making additional gradual changes as you make new discoveries
Here’s an example of 3 days in my life:
Breakfast: Whole wheat toast with peanut butter and banana
Immediately after: I feel satisfied but not too full
2 hours later: Still feeling good, will be hungry by the time lunch rolls around
Breakfast: Greek yogurt with honey, blueberries, and granola
Immediately after: Ok – feeling a bit bloated
2 hours later: Feeling dehydrated and still bloated
Breakfast: Green smoothie with kale, almond milk, banana and mango
Immediately after: I feel great! Enough energy to keep me going and still feeling light
2 hours later: Starving, definitely not going to make it until lunch
If I look back at these three days, it’s clear that Day 2 was no good, and perhaps I even have a dairy intolerance. In this case, I would try eliminating dairy from my diet or having it more sparingly to see how I feel.
Day 1 and 3 breakfasts both work for me. But when I have a smoothie, I should either add some protein to the smoothie like almond butter or plan to have a small snack like a handful of raw almonds a few hours after.
Tuning into what your body is telling you gives you the opportunity to take your health to the next level by figuring out what makes you feel great and start having more of that and less of the stuff that makes you feel tired, bloated, and heavy. These same principles can be applied to other meals and snacks.
In order for this to really work and achieve your health goals, you still need to make smart choices. A doughnut is not a healthy breakfast; I think we all know that.