There's no denying that the situation we've been in the past four months has created a perfect storm for those prone to gaining weight. Just the other day I was shocked that my pants had shrunk! I do remember putting them in the dryer on high heat the last time I did laundry, that was my excuse. But my reasoning was flawed when I tried on other pants that had not been subjected to the high heat. They were all snug, so what happened?
When I look back at what the cause may have been it was evident that I had let a few more calories slip in. That extra handful of dry roast peanuts, those low-carb chips (only 5), the 3 crackers with peanut butter. It was time to review my habits and make some adjustments before I had to buy new pants!
Those extra calories occurred within 30 minutes of returning home from the office. Do I start snacking because I’m hungry? Ask yourself the question, Was I really hungry? Perhaps it’s a conditioned response that must be changed to a positive one. I’ve replaced those chips and crackers with yogurt dip and veggie sticks.
Yogurt Dip with Veggie Stix
Ingredients-1/4 cup Spinach - loose pack, cut small
-1/4 cup 0%-Fat Greek yogurt
-1/2 tsp Dr. Sears’ Zone Extra Virgin Olive Oil
-1 tsp Fresh squeezed lemon juice - or lime or orange
-1/8 tsp Black pepper
-1/8 tsp Salt
-1/2 tsp Cumin - to taste
-1/8 tsp Garlic powder - or clove pressed, to taste
-1/2 Zucchini - quartered lengthwise for dipping
-1/2 Red bell pepper - cut in strips for dipping
1. Cut the spinach into small pieces.
2. Mix the yogurt, extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, spices and chopped spinach together.
3. Use the zucchini and pepper for dipping and a spoon for the rest.
Let Your Body Be Your Nutritional Spotter
Remember, paying attention is key. You must tune into your hunger signals. If you ignore those signals and eat when you’re not hungry or consume too much (you know, eating until you’re full) then you should be checking on how your clothes are fitting. Are they becoming a little snug?
I remember when Dr. Sears had me try one of his nutrition bars in the ’90s. I looked at it and said this isn’t going to fill me up! He smiled and said eat the bar with a glass of water and do something rather than think about consuming more. The bars and the Zone meals you prepare are hormonally balanced. It takes about 20 minutes for the satiety signal in the gut to communicate with the brain. He was right, it worked!
The Zone is a proven program that helps promote satiety without deprivation while reducing body fat and the risk factors (cellular inflammation) for all chronic diseases.
It sounds simple but for most, it’s a challenge. Technically, we consume food for nutrition
and survival but for many, it’s a form of self-medication that comes with nasty side effects: weight gain, pre-diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia, and others.
Ask yourself are you feeding your body or your emotions? What’s a better substitute when you’re not hungry? Take a walk, meditate, read a magazine, take a nap, write in your journal, or listen to a podcast.
Your Cheat Sheet for Creating New Healthy Habits
• Reduce (or eliminate) grains, rice, pasta, starch veggies (squash, potatoes), and sweet fruits (bananas, mangos, melons). Supersize your plate with colorful non- starchy veggies and mixed berries for your fruit.
• Balance every meal/snack with lean protein, non-starchy veggies.
• Avoid omega-6 fats (corn, safflower, soybean oils) – you’ll get enough on the Zone program and begin supplementing with OmegaRx2.
• Exercise – start with walking. Adopt a new routine, (Yoga, Pilates, Qi Gong).
• Reduce stress – not with another cocktail or bowl of ice cream but with a scheduled program of meditation. Check out HeartMath or Dr. Joe Dispenza.
• Practice portion control and leave the table before you’re stuffed.
• Have a food plan and work the plan! When you go off course make the correct adjustment to put yourself back on track. Becoming aware of how you look and feel is the first step to creating change. Now you must take the necessary steps to put a plan into action. It’s a process and awareness but with persistence, you will succeed!
Find out how much protein, fat, and carbohydrates you need with our Body Fat Calculator to start burning fat while maintaining muscle mass.