I’m not talking about skinny people like Lindsay Lohan who looks the way she does for a variety of unhealthy reasons. I’m talking about the people you see everyday who aren’t in a constant battle with their weight. They have unlocked the formula for a healthy life that works for them. While all people are different and no two lifestyles will produce identical results, they all share a few things in common, as detailed below.
1. No fast food. Plain and simple. Avoid the fast food to avoid the extra weight, high blood pressure, elevated blood cholesterol levels, clogged arteries, diabetes, etc. Healthy people simply avoid eating this processed junk. If you can’t get yourself to completely cut it out, no more than once a month, please.
2. Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day. Drinking water helps your body function, but equally as important, it will help curb cravings you may develop throughout the day. A lot of people eat snacks between meals, and unfortunately these snacks are typically high-fat options. By drinking water you will have less of a craving between meals to gorge yourself on unhealthy choices.
3. Have 5-6 small meals a day. Overweight people tend to have fewer meals, but really pile on the calories during the meals they do have. This causes the body to go into overdrive, and revs up your secretion of insulin. Insulin promotes fat retention in the body, which is bad news for those trying to lose weight. Keep your meals smaller and more evenly spaced throughout the day.
4. Have go to meals. Having a staple or two in your diet is a great way to positively impact your eating habits. If you know you are always having turkey on wheat with a side of greek yogurt for lunch, it takes the guessing game out of what to have. Often times when you have to make a last-minute decision about what to have, it is going to be a fast food or less healthy option.
5. Eat more vegetables. Vegetables are good for us for so many reasons. They make us feel healthy, the provide various vitamins and nutrients, and are a great source of cancer-fighting anti-oxidants. Take twice the amount of vegetables you would normally take and you will end up eating less of the high-fat foods on your dinner table.
6. Chew slowly. Chewing your food better will slow down your eating, make you feel more full, and better help your body digest. Studies have shown that overweight people chew their food 5.4 times less on average than people of a healthy weight. Know this and use it to your advantage.
7. Post-workout meal. A post-workout meal can consist of nothing more than a whey protein shake. For many people, this is the most important meal of the day as you need to feed your muscles. Make it a habit to ALWAYS have a post-workout protein shake and it will seem like less of a hassle. Adding muscle to your body increases metabolism, which helps you burn calories when at rest.
8. No meals before bed. While we all enjoy that midnight snack every now and then, for the most part healthy people avoid eating up to 3 hours before bed. The calories from these foods tend to be burned slower and will turn to fat more readily in your body. In addition, you’ll probably wake up feeling sluggish if you stuffed yourself shortly before bed the night before.