Other moms always ask me, what’s my diet like? It’s actually pretty straightforward. The short version is, I eat three meals a day, I drink water instead of Starbucks, and I avoid a lot of processed foods, wheat, sugar and other ingredients I can’t pronounce.
Try sticking to my basic commandments for a balanced diet and see if this doesn’t increase your energy, balance your moods, and make your favorite jeans hang just a little bit looser.
Reach for the H20. Instead of soda, juice or coffee, go for a tall glass of water. Sugary drinks have a lot of hidden calories and can leave you dehydrated.
Don’t skip breakfast. You put your metabolism behind the eight ball for the rest of the day by skipping or “forgetting” to eat breakfast. Start off your day with a good size meal. Eat some eggs or oatmeal. (And no, a bagel or muffin and a cup of coffee do not make a meal.)
Eat Something Green with Every Meal. It’s important to get enough green in our diets; it helps our pH balance and makes everything just run a little smoother.
Go Clear, Not Creamy. Choose salad dressings that are vinegar, olive oil or balsamic based rather than those made with mayonnaise or buttermilk.
Stick with Real Food. Avoid too many nuked, frozen, or fast foods. Put the stuff in your mouth that is going to give you nutritional value. A fresh chicken salad is a good choice, as is a piece of fish you grill simply, with a squeeze of lemon to bring out its natural good flavor. And remember, if you can’t pronounce it don’t eat it unless, of course, you happen to be in a foreign country.
Avoid Preservatives. If a food has a shelf life longer than the giant tortoise, AVOID it! Why would you want to eat something that can stay preserved for
12 years? Yuck.
Watch Your Portions. It’s better to eat five small meals a day then two giant ones. Avoid a huge dinner, except on special occasions, like when you’re supping out at your favorite restaurant (see below).
Don’t Cut Out All The Carbs. Don’t even try! Natural carbs, such as those found in beans, wholegrain cereals and vegetables, are a good source of brain food. If you remove all the carbs from your diet, you are liable to forget your own name. Doing this is not great for the moods either.
Eat the Good Fats. Good fats, such as those found in salmon, nuts and olive oil, are important because they make you feel full and satisfied. Don’t be afraid of healthy fats. If you put enough in your meals it can help you control your portion sizes.
Focus on Proteins. Proteins have a high nutritional value and are good for your muscle tone and development. Help yourself to sensible portions of lean meats such as fish, tofu, turkey and chicken.
Plan Your Indulgences. If you know you are going to your favorite restaurant, the one that has the dessert you die for, then be good all week and go and have a great time. Reward yourself by sucking it up on the days before and then really enjoy your special night out.
Get Tough When You Need To. If you’ve been having a little bit too much fun with your eating then set a one-week moratorium for yourself. Eat strict for one week just to keep everything under control. You can do it, and once you do, you’ll feel like you have a handle on things.
Cut Yourself Some Slack. Whatever you decide to eat, be sure to enjoy it. There is nothing worse then eating something and then feeling bad about it. It’s adding insult to injury. If it’s going to make you feel that bad to eat it, then ask yourself, “Why am I going to put it in my mouth?” One or the other, do it and love it. Don’t do it and feel good about that, too.
With that in mind, Eat Something Yummy Once a Day. Not a whole pie, but one bite. Maybe two.
Follow these simple rules, and see where it gets your body, mind and spirit.
All my best,
Want more words of wisdom from Modern Mom’s Fitness Expert Gabrielle Reece? Check out this super athlete’s website at http://www.gotogabby.com, where you can also pick up Gabby’s Prenatal First and Second Trimester DVD Workouts. Gabby has also put together “Express 15” DVDs, workouts designed for women who “have no time” to exercise. Available at gotogabby.com, and at Target stores.