Healthy Eating Habits For Great Abs!Posted at August 31, 2015 by Brenazon on category Abs, Cookbooks, Featured, Healthy Breakfast, Healthy Dinner, Healthy Lunch, Healthy Recipes, Healthy Snacks
So many people have the misconception that if you do 200 crunches a day you will automatically have the abs you are looking for. In a perfect world that would be true. However, we are not living in a perfect world, we are living in the real world. I wish it were that easy and we could continue eating anything and everything we wanted all day long. We already know that is not the case. Unless you make some changes in your diet and begin healthy eating habits, you will never see the incredible abs you are longing for. There are a few simple healthy eating rules I try to follow every day that I am going to share with you.
Never eat anything 2-3 hours before you go to sleep– Your body cannot digest food properly during this time because your body slows down and is not able to digest food in your stomach the way it is suppose to. Your body will end up storing those calories at night as fat instead of burning those calories during times that you are active throughout the day. You want to burn those calories, not have those calories stored as fat around those abs. If you go to sleep your body slows down and is not able to burn those calories away. Make sure you have your last snack or meal at least 2-3 hours before you hit the sack.
Portion Control– Reduce the amount of food you put on your plate during your meals. If you feel full, stop eating. Many of us were taught as children that you don’t leave the table until you finish everything on your plate. In my opinion, that was a bad thing. How many of you today do this? I guarantee you the amount will surprise you. We have to retrain our brain that stuffing ourselves until we are sick and feel disgusting just isn’t healthy for any of us. Only eat when you feel hungry, not just because it is 5:00 and that is the time your brain tells you to eat. It is better to wait until you are truly hungry. In today’s world when we order at a restaurant the portion sizes are incredibly large and for some reason we feel the need to eat the entire plate, even if it makes us sick. Probably again going back to when we were kids and pretty much forced to eat everything on our plate. This is such a bad habit and a hard one to break, however it can be done if you set your mind to it.
- If you are eating at home, I personally use a smaller plate to trick my mind into thinking I have a lot more food than I really do. This makes my plate look full and in return I feel satisfied. I actually have less food than I normally would have on a bigger plate. I also try to fill my plate with more vegetables than any other food group because vegetables are healthy for us. Another thing I try to do, is take your time eating and chew your food well. This will speed up your digestive system.
- I suggest eating half the portion then either bring home the other half for the next day or share a plate with your significant other or a friend. You will feel better and also save money by splitting a meal in half.
Reduce Sugar Intake- Men shouldn’t have more than 9 teaspoons daily, while women shouldn’t have more than 6 teaspoons. This amounts to a max of 37.5 grams of sugar or 150 calories from sugar for men, and 25 grams of sugar or 100 calories from sugar for women. If you are a big soda drinker, thankfully I am not. By taking this out of your diet you will see huge results. Less cookies and less junk food. Eat more fruits and drink water. Drinking more water will flush out toxins and keep your bowels moving. If you do not like water you can add a few different things to make it taste better by using orange slices, lemon slices, grated ginger, cucumber, fresh spearmint, and fresh basil. The water is left to infuse overnight. This makes a great natural flavor without adding those bad sugars. Try it, it is very tasty and refreshing if you need to add a little extra zip to just plain old water.
- Eat Healthier Foods: Fruits and vegetables
- Eat Lean Protein: Beans, nuts and lean meat.
- Eat Less Sodium: Eating sodium will make you retain water and look bloated. Switch regular salt to sea salt or kosher.
- Eat Healthy Fat: All fat is not bad for you. Monounsaturated fat, which is found in avocados, nuts and fish oil can actually help you lose weight and are good for you. Stay away from trans fats that are usually found in baked goods and processed foods.
- Eat Whole Grains: Eating whole grains will help you feel full for a longer period of time. Look for labels that say 100% whole grain or 100% whole wheat.
- Eat Low-Glycemic Index Foods: These foods take longer to digest, which will result in you feeling fuller for a longer period of time. Some examples that include this are cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cucumbers, zucchini, dark leaf lettuce, onions, pears, tomatoes, watercress, broccoli, bananas, apples, and berries are all good foods to eat.
Cut down on drinking alcohol– especially wine and beer. Did you know that one bottle of wine is about 600 calories. Drinking alcohol also stimulates your appetite, which will make you eat more. When you drink alcohol it makes you crave junk food. Ugh!!!! This is a hard category for me. I enjoy having a glass of wine every night. Out of all the things I have talked about this is the toughest one for me.
In conclusion: You do not have to cut any of these things out from your diet cold turkey. It will take time. Pick one thing and go for it! See how it works out, then take on the next challenge. You will start feeling better and will love the results that these healthy eating habits will provide.
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Brenda Brennan is a "Fitness Buff" and President of Brenazon, Inc.
2054 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Cary, NC 27518