A Better Approach to Drinking
In my experience, a diet means sudden, radical change. I'll be highly motivated for a while, and then I hit a plateau and get discouraged.
By using tiny habits, there are many more ways to be successful.
If I think in terms of tiny habits, my focus is different. Rather than worrying if I don't lose weight one week, I can look at my success in maintaining habits. I can easily meet and exceed my tiny goals, which means I'm always making progress. Continuing to make better and better food choices should be permanently sustainable, which means that over time I will see bigger changes.
It also means that I'm not measuring the success of the entire lifestyle solely by whether I lose weight, but also by improved health in many different ways due to the gradual accumulation of new, better habits. There are many more ways for me to be successful than just a number on a scale or a piece of clothing.
There are other facets of the minimalist whole food lifestyle I haven't written about yet, so today I want to bring up the question of what to drink.
Don't drink your calories.
This is an important idea that might challenge your thoughts about what is healthy.
Smoothies are a thing right now, and many people swear by them. But with multiple servings of fruit, not to mention juices, frozen yogurt, milk substitutes, and giant servings of nut butter added to many smoothies, they are sugar, fat, and calorie bombs. Even if kale, beets, or chia seeds are in the mix, the fiber of all ingredients is torn and crushed by blending, meaning that our bodies burn fewer calories digesting a smoothie than if we simply ate the unprocessed fruit or vegetables.
As an example, one commercial smoothie has 240 calories (not enough to replace a meal) and a whopping 47 grams of sugar. With only 2 grams of fiber and no protein, those sugars are going to hit your system quickly and all at once. The insulin surge is going to help you store fat. And in spite of the fact that five different fruits were juiced (plus wheat and barley grasses), the resulting product contains less than a third of your vitamin requirements for a day and very little iron or other minerals. What a waste! And you'll still be hungry after you drink it.
12 better hydration strategies
1. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon into two cups of cold or hot water and drink it first thing in the morning.
Drinking lemon water after fasting all night stimulates your liver and helps it to detox. It provides vitamin C, freshens breath, improves skin quality, and promotes weight loss!
Dehydration is not only dangerous for all systems of your body, but it will stall weight loss.
One beer, glass of wine, or cocktail is roughly 150 empty calories. Since alcohol is one of the biggest drivers of excess food intake, abstinence will also make you less inclined to overeat. It's a win-win situation for your diet.
It will help boost your metabolism.
Caffeine also boosts your metabolism. Just be sure to limit caffeine intake to morning hours so your sleep patterns won't be disturbed.
Caffeine may boost metabolism, but no amount of metabolic boost can burn off the empty calories in energy drinks. The typical energy drink contains 1/4 cup of sugar which will hit your system all at once, triggering an insulin response and fat storage.
Add a dash of cream if you like. The fat in cream helps stabilize blood sugar.
If you crave a slightly sweeter drink, add a few drops of vanilla extract to your cup of coffee. Brew coffee or tea with cinnamon sticks. Add an orange wedge studded with whole cloves to your steeping tea.
Most sodas and candy have equal amounts of sugar.
Artificial sweeteners play havoc with the body's normal metabolic response, actually increasing appetite!
Lemon, lime, orange, cucumber, or pineapple slices are all delicious. Mint and basil leaves will also make a refreshing tonic.
You never need to feel deprived, since nothing is permanently off limits. This is your chance to indulge in a tall Frappuccino or a glass or two of wine.