I had the pleasure of meeting a couple of fit business colleagues for lunch over the past couple of weeks, and I have to tell you I was pretty shocked by their eating habits. Not that they had bad table manners or anything like that. What was shocking to me was what and how they ate.
You know I'm not the most fit person on earth. I could stand to lose 15 or 20 pounds, but I do take pride in knowing a thing or two about nutrition. I follow a mostly vegetarian diet, but I do eat more refined carbs than I should and I love ice cream. I think I eat more healthfully than a lot of people.
That's why eating lunch with my fit women colleagues was such a shock. On two different occasions, these two women ordered what I perceived to be snacks as their meals. They ordered SOUP and SALAD!
Whenever I eat at a restaurant, I usually order a salad or split an appetizer and then enjoy an entree. And I normally eat EVERYTHING on my plate. So this bird-like eating was a big surprise for me and it got to thinking more about portion sizes and my food choices.
To get a professional opinion about healthy eating habits, I talked to my friend and yoga student Linda Bittel, who is a health coach and who recently completed an intensive training in nutrition. Her thoughts and guidance were really interesting to me.
Here are Linda's 5 Easy Tips for Healthy Eating:
- Practice awareness. Just like we practice awareness in yoga, we should practice being aware of the signals our bodies send when we eat different kinds of foods. For example, sugars and refined carbs may give you a quick energy boost, but after they are digested you suffer an energy slump. And it may please your taste buds to finish every bite on your plate, but that heavy feeling you carry around after the meal is a good indicator you made a bad eating choice.
- Eat for your well-being! Eat for sustained energy, well-rounded nutrition, and to nourish your body and mind.
- Plan ahead so you can eat at home. Designate a couple of hours a week for menu planning, grocery shopping, and food prep. Chopping vegetables and pre-cooking meat can be time-savers when you need to get a quick dinner on the table for your hungry family.
- Don't let yourself get too hungry. Keep healthy snacks on hand for emergency situations when you're forced to go too long between meals. Extreme hunger leads to extreme eating, so it's best to plan ahead and not risk it.
- If you have to eat in a restaurant, be mindful and go back to Linda's first tip: Eat for your well-being! Restaurant food is often loaded with fat and salt that make it taste delicious. Consider sharing an entree with a friend or ordering soup and salad to stay on track with healthy eating.
After witnessing the mysterious eating habits of my fit friends and hearing Linda's 5 Easy Tips, I really feel motivated to start making some changes in my eating habits. How about you?
Do these tips motivate you to revamp your eating habits? What #1 easy change do you plan to make right away? And what are your own personal favorite tips for sustained healthy eating?
Please share your thoughts in the Comments below. I look forward to hearing from you!
Lots of love, Zelinda
P.S. If you enjoyed this post and you'd like weekly nuggets of wellness inspiration delivered to your inbox, click here to receive our weekly newsletter. And if you think a friend might enjoy this post, copy and paste the link to this page in an email and send it to them.