When my clients come in to see me, I hear two different things:
1. I do really well for breakfast and lunch, but when I get home from work, I eat non-stop until I go to sleep.
2. I eat really well when I am at home, but when I am at work, there are so many sweets, I can’t stay away.
These are two opposite problems but with the same solution: change your environment to work for you!
If you struggle with the first problem I listed, chances are you are likely not eating enough throughout the day. You feel like you are doing well because you had oatmeal for breakfast and half a sandwich for lunch, You didn’t notice that you were hungry because you were busy, but then you get in the car to drive home, have some time to think and realize you are starving. By the time you get home, you eat anything, so you go for the chips or the sweets, the quick things. When you are eating quickly, your body will become too full before your brain realizes it. It usually takes about 20-30 minutes after eating for you to actually feel full.
The solution is to eat more balanced throughout the day, eat your oatmeal for breakfast, but maybe add in a piece of fruit that you can eat at your desk for a mid-morning snack. Or, instead of eating a half of a sandwich, go ahead and eat the whole thing. At home, make those go-to snacks hard to get, keep the chips and sweets in hard to reach places and put a bowl of fruit on the counter or cut up vegetables in clear containers that you can see right when you open the fridge.
If the second problem sounds more like you, planning ahead may be your best option. Often times, at work or when eating out at restaurants, there are choices that you wouldn’t usually buy for yourself to eat at home such as donuts, french fries or pizza. These foods are calorie dense and nutrient deficient, but are full of those appealing components: salt and fat.
If you know there will be foods that will be tempting at your job, keep some fruit or healthy granola bars at your desk and eat that instead of heading to the break-room for a sweet treat. If lunch is being brought in, look ahead at the menu and request a meal that works for you or bring in your own meal from home. I always like to bring in leftovers from dinner the previous night.
Eating out at restaurants is another common dilemma when trying to eat better and change your lifestyle. Almost all restaurants have their menus online these days, so if you know where you are going to eat that night, take a quick peek at the menu beforehand and find something that will work for you. If that is not an option, look for words such as grilled, roasted and baked. These all indicate methods for cooking that use lower fat. Also, avoid sauces and gravies, opting for a red sauce on pasta rather than a white sauce. Many restaurants are open to substitutions as well, so ask for an additional side of vegetables or ask for your main to be prepared with no salt or oil, most restaurants want your return service, so they will work to prepare the dish the way you want it made.
When it comes to fast food, sometimes this is the only option, there are some ways to make the best choices there too. Fast food chains are required to have their nutrition facts available to the public, so if it is not posted, ask for the nutrition info before ordering. A lot of times, it may seem as though the salad is going to be the best option; however; this is not always the case. Some salads at fast food restaurants have more salt and fat than a simple hamburger. So again, it is about ordering what YOU want. Ask for a salad, but without the meat and with the dressing on the side. If I am in a pinch, I will order a kids meal, it is the right portion sizes and healthier options, such as apple slices are available in place of fries.
So if you are on the path to living better and eating well, don’t be discouraged. Going out to eat, socializing with your co-workers, or coming home to relax after a hard day at work do not need to be traps to get you off track. Simply do a bit of planning and work to make your environment fit you.
Share your tips for eating health on the go in the comments section below!
Whether you’ve fully adopted a plant-based diet or are simply dipping your toes in the water, there’s no doubt that wholesome food is at the center of one’s wellbeing.
Here we’ve rounded up five of our favorite cookbooks that are chock full of nourishing recipes and nutrition tips that are sure to assist in your healthy eating goals:
1. Forks Over Knives – The Cookbook
If you watched the Forks Over Knives documentary (read more about it here , along with the rest of our top documentary picks), you know what FOK is all about – the concept that degenerative diseases afflicting so much of the U.S. today can be controlled and even reversed by rejecting animal-based and processed foods. This cookbook features 300+ plant-based recipes which place fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes in the lime light.
2. The China Study Cookbook: Over 120 Whole Food, Plant-Based Recipes
This cookbook came to fruition thanks to The China Study; a book touting one of the most comprehensive nutrition studies ever conducted which reveals that a plant-based diet leads to optimal health and can halt or even reverse many diseases. The China Study Cookbook shares 120+ plant-based, nutrient-dense recipes that promote optimal health.
3. The PlantPure Nation Cookbook: The Official Companion Cookbook to the Breakthrough Film
PlantPure Nation, yet another noteworthy documentary created by the same producers as Forks Over Knives, provides this trusty companion cookbook boasting 150+ plant-centric recipes. It’s also filled with tips, tricks, and grocery lists for people interested in a whole food, plant-based diet.
4. Plant-Powered Families: Over 100 Kid-Tested, Whole-Foods Vegan Recipes
Inspire healthful, plant-based eating among the whole family with this must-have cookbook from Dreena Burton. From delicious school lunches to appetizing on-the-go snacks, this book supplies more than 100 kid-tested and approved recipes and serves as an excellent reference for parents raising young ones on a whole food, vegan diet.
5. Crazy Sexy Kitchen
Don’t let the risqué title of this one deter you. Author and cancer survivor Kris Carr attributes her triumph over cancer to her lifestyle changes, most especially her diet. After embracing a diet made up of whole, plant-based foods, she soon discovered the transformative power of nutrition and felt better than she ever had. This cookbook offers 150+ recipes that includes everything from fresh-pressed juices to delectable desserts.
Also recommended: Oh She Glows, Minimalist Baker, But I Could Never Go Vegan
What are some of your favorite cookbooks? Share on our Facebook page !