Let’s get real: The past few months have been tough. We’ve found ourselves sitting at home much more often than normal, being less active than usual, and doing plenty of snacking and baking (maybe even some stress eating). I know I’ve enjoyed my (maybe a little too frequent?) wine and takeout orders.
And guess what? It’s okay! The truth is, food is a form of comfort, and we’ve all been embracing comfort in all of its forms lately. A few extra pounds is not going to make or break your health, are we are definitely NOT here to make you feel guilty or like you need to lose weight.
But you may not be feeling like the best version of yourself these days if you’ve gained a few “pandemic pounds.” And we want you to feel great! So today we are sharing some info to help you not only look better but also feel better. The best part? These aren’t quick fixes or detoxes that might work for a little while but actually set you up for failure. They are healthy, sustainable lifestyle habits that actually set you up for long term success. And just remember, we’re here for you all along the way!
Hydrate, Sleep, and Work It Out
First off, there are a few key habits when it comes to losing and maintaining a healthy weight. Those include drinking plenty of water, getting enough good quality sleep, and exercising on the regular. These three habits are some of the cornerstones of a healthy lifestyle, so make sure you aren’t forgetting them!
Eat Healthy, Carb Conscious Meals
There are so many definitions of healthy these days, it’s hard to know what it even means! Let’s break it down, according to #science.
No healthy diet is complete without vegetables, which are great sources of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Green and other non-starchy veggies are especially low in calories and carbs, so try to make at least half your plate vegetables at most meals. Depending on your individual needs and frequency of exercise, you may be able to incorporate 1-2 more servings daily of healthy carbohydrate sources, like fruit, quinoa, or sweet potatoes.
Getting enough protein is crucial for overall wellness and weight loss. Protein takes the most energy out of all the macronutrients to break down. Because of this, a diet higher in protein can actually boost the number of calories you burn in a day. Protein is also very filling, so having enough at meals will help you stay full between meals. Aim to include a source of protein at each meal, about the size of your palm, or at least 20g.
You will also want to include a source of healthy fats, like avocado, nuts, and seeds at each meal. Fats are the most satiating out of all the macronutrients and add delicious flavor to meals.
Limit Sugar, Booze, and Carbs
We won't tell you NEVER eat certain foods, but if you are looking to be your healthiest self, you’ll want to avoid sugar, alcohol, and starchy carbs for the time being.
Sugar and alcohol are simply empty calories, meaning they provide no nutritional benefit to you, but pack a lot of calories in a small serving. Sugar and booze also actually promote fat storage, so it’s best to avoid them for the most part if weight loss is your goal.
Not all carbs are evil, but all carbohydrates do raise your blood sugar and insulin levels. This is fine in normal amounts, but too many carbs can lead to fat storage. Alternatively, when you keep carbs on the low side, you are able to burn fat for energy instead of glucose. A lower-carb diet also helps you de-bloat and lose water weight in just a few days, which is encouraging and helps you stick with good habits for the long term!
Psst...we’ve got tons of recipes that have no added sugar and are very low carb!
Don't Deprive Yourself
Whenever you are trying to make some healthier lifestyle choices, you are bound to limit certain foods. That should actually feel good, but sometimes we experience cravings that don’t line up with our health goals. So if you really, really want a cookie, some chips, or that burger, eat it! Enjoy it, savor it, stop eating it when you become full, and pivot right back to your healthy habits afterward.
Depriving yourself of what you truly want tends to backfire, causing you to binge eat in order to satisfy that original craving you had. One little meal or snack will not completely derail a healthy lifestyle. It truly is what you do over the long term that counts.
One of the great things about Swerve is that you can still satisfy your sweet tooth without even straying away from your plan. You get all the delicious taste of sugary sweets without the blood sugar spike. You really can have your cake and eat it too!
We hope these general recommendations can help you look and feel your best. As always, we recommend that you consult with your healthcare professional and/or dietitian before starting a weight loss program. Let us know if you have any questions. Cheers to healthy habits and looking and feeling your best!