With a new year up and running, chances are you are feeling a little bloated, heavy and with the scales showing a few more kilograms than you would like.
Forget extreme weight loss programs that promise the world – the easiest, cheapest and most sustainable way to get in shape is to implement your own diet overhaul, complete with whole, natural foods you can prepare at home. To give you some inspiration, here is a sample day.
The earlier you have your breakfast, the better it will be for your metabolism so try and eat by 8am at the latest.
Start with plenty of fluid – some green tea; hot water with lemon or a mixed vegetable juice to help you rehydrate.
Next, you want a protein rich option that will keep you full for at least three to four hours. An egg scramble with vegetables, cottage cheese with wholegrain toast or CHIA or some plain Greek yoghurt with banana are all protein rich options that will help to control your insulin levels throughout the morning, controlling appetite and promoting fat metabolism.
Eating substantial meals and eliminating snacks is one of the easiest ways to drop a few kilograms but if you do find yourself peckish mid-morning, this is not a bad thing as it shows your body is burning your food well.
Curb your cravings with a herbal or black tea; some berries which are low in calories and rich in nutrients or a mixed green juice that contains just one piece of fruit and three to four different green vegetables are all good options at 10am or 11am.
The green juice mix I am a fan of is a banana teamed with kale, cucumber, spinach and avocado – delicious when blended with plenty of ice.
The earlier you have your lunch the better and salad is the way to go. Mix as many vegetables as you like with some tinned fish, lean chicken breast or cottage cheese. Enjoy with an olive oil dressing which helps the salad nutrients be absorbed and feel free to enjoy some tasty additions such as pumpkin seeds; goat’s or feta cheese or a little pesto.
Remember, the better the salad tastes, the more of it you will eat. My favourite mix is spinach, pumpkin, red salmon, goat’s cheese and red capsicum.
Again, dropping the snacks is not a bad thing if weight loss is your goal, but if you are peckish by 4pm, it is the perfect time for a snack. To a handful of nuts, a frozen banana, a little Greek yoghurt with CHIA or a homemade iced tea which you can easily make with your favourite tea bag, hot water left to cool and plenty of ice - literally no calories and delicious!
The earlier you have your dinner, the better to allow 10-12 hours overnight without food. Think a white protein such as chicken breast or fish with three to four different coloured vegetables. Again, cooking the vegetables with a little fat will help the nutrients in the vegetables to be absorbed so a drizzle of pesto or olive oil is not a bad thing.
Simply having a light dinner is all you need to awake the next day feeling better in your body even after one single day of nutrient rich eating.