Day 17: Healthy Food for Busy Everyday People
The health food industry is full of bronzed, gym toned, health gods and goddesses who are paragons of virtue at all times.
I am none of the above things. I’m pasty white (allergic to sun and haven’t been able to afford a holiday since my twenties); I’m meant to go out running once a week with a friend but have been roughly twice since last October (I have a very narrow margin of acceptable temperatures to run in – it’s not my fault the weather is terrible); and I have never, ever, been a paragon of virtue.
I love chocolate, I love wine and I love lazing about on the sofa watching Masterchef (or MasterSh*t as my other half calls it).
However, despite these faults of mine, I am pretty healthy. This is because I’ve made a lot of small changes over the last few years to include healthy food in my diet. I’m not special, I’m just a normal, busy person with normal, everyday struggles. But because the changes that I made are small, and manageable, it hasn’t been difficult to do.
Incorporating healthy food
These small changes are the key to making larger, sustainable lifestyle changes (ones that you are able to keep all year and not just the first two weeks of January). Swopping white pasta for brown pasta, cooking a few extra meals from scratch a week, eating wholemeal bread instead of white bread, giving the children an apple and a cheese stick instead of a packet of crisps and a bar of chocolate, walking up a flight of stairs instead of taking a lift. All of these changes are relatively minor, they take little effort, yet they add up to something pretty significant.
Improving your health doesn’t have to mean becoming someone else. You don’t have to turn yourself into a gym bunny (if you don’t want to) and you don’t have to pretend to exist on expensive chia seeds and kale. You can still be you, looking after your children, going to work, shopping in your usual supermarket, whatever it is that you do in your normal life.
Beyond New Year
We are halfway through January now. If you are still going strong with your New Year’s resolutions then that is brilliant! If it all seems just a bit too much then cut back a bit but don’t give up completely. Think about what you wanted to achieve on the first of January. Then start making some little changes to help you towards that goal.
If you are still going strong with the 28 DAYS Challenge (I am too I promise) then you deserve huge credit. 17 days done, well over halfway!!! You might be moaning about it (I am), and you might feel like it’s the longest month ever (it is), but you are doing it and you will feel amazing about yourself when you don’t quit.
So remember, better health is achievable for all of us, no matter who we are. Just make smaller, more sustainable changes and let them build up over time, into something special.
Image credit: Creative Commons, Matt Cornock https://www.flickr.com/photos/mattcornock/. Image cropped, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/. Used in: Day 17: Healthy Food for Busy Everyday People.