Eat Like The Carters?
For 2019, Beyonce and Jay-Z have issued a challenge to start eating a plant-based diet. While they don't push for a full 24/7 vegan diet, they do suggest that eating less animal-based foods is good for your health and for the environment. Healthier eating is included in a lot of New Year's resolutions but it's not often that people successfully stick to that goal. Any kind of diet change can be difficult because it's a major aspect of your lifestyle and a hard habit to change. Thankfully, there are steps you can take to make the transition to healthier eating easier and more maintainable.
The first step is changing the mentality you have about your diet. Rather than look at a diet as a means to an end, you should look at it as a lifelong decision. When you do this, you'll be able to design a more sustainable diet because the choices and goals you set will take into account the long term. There are endless diets out there that promise to work fast and yield results quickly but that's because they require extreme measures. And these extreme measures by nature make it that much harder to stick to long term. Health requires lifelong dedication and consistency which means you need to be honest and critical about how your current lifestyle can support any diet change.
Once you find a healthy diet that you think you can work with, take little steps into transitioning rather than change everything from one day to the next. Yes the initial process might be slower but this also means that you're giving yourself more time to get used to the diet changes. If you want to cut out soft drinks, quitting cold turkey is often tempting but not often as successful. Instead, vow to replace one glass or bottle of soda with water a day. When you're used to that, replace another and so on until you've successfully replaced it all with water. You might have taken longer to switch but you're less likely to revert back to old habits a couple months down the line because you've actually given yourself the chance to adjust.
With that being said, allow yourself treats. In an ideal world, you would never eat anything unhealthy and you'd never even tempted. But we don't live in an ideal world and we all know the temptation is very real sometimes. It's okay to indulge in a dessert or some fried food -or fried dessert- every once in a while. If you maintain a healthy diet regularly, occasional treats aren't going to destroy all your efforts for healthier eating.
Healthy eating tends to have a reputation of being bland and boring which is what makes it so hard to stick to but it doesn't have to be that way. Yeah if you eat unseasoned vegetables all the time, it's probably going to get boring about 3 bites in but this is far from your only option. Go online and research healthy meals and recipes. There are endless things to choose from. Try all the healthy food until you find the dishes that you actually find to be delicious and actually make you excited to eat. If you do this, then the diet change won't be nearly as hard to stick to.
Pretty much any nutritionist will tell you that the healthiest foods are the ones that you cook yourself instead of being premade/already processed. This is all good and well but obviously one of the appeals to premade and processed food is how fast and easy it is to access. When you start getting hangry, who wants to sit through another 30 minutes of preparing a snack or meal when you can just reach into your pantry and grab something that's already ready to go? Well the solution is to make your healthy food more accessible. People swear by meal prepping because it makes it so much easier to just grab and go and mimics the mindlessness that you can have with processed foods. Spend one day a week preparing all your food and snacks for the next few days and just watch how much easier it is to actually eat healthier.
Healthier eating is a great New Year's resolution for everyone. The most important thing to remember is that it's a diet change to healthier foods is to benefit you, not everyone else. That means you should go at the pace and use the method that works best for you. Like we said, good health takes a lifelong dedication so find the way that makes it easiest for you to stay dedicated. Good luck!