Wow! What a great start to our weekly challenge. Week 1 was full of motivation and triumph. I’ve heard a lot back from a lot of you, and I’m so proud of each and every one of you who were able to implement the first weeks challenge. Don’t forget that the idea is for these challenges to become a permanent habit – something that will compound on itself over time to create a much more fit, healthier, and happier – YOU.
There will be never be any “diet” challenges, only LIFESTYLE challenges. I want you to think of each and every challenge as a lifestyle change. Something that will make you healthier and more healthier the longer you maintain this new healthy habit, formed from these weekly challenges.
Week 2 is about continuing the good habit forming foundations of living a fit and healthy lifestyle. This weeks challenge is: Know What You Consume! I want you to start reading every nutrition label of anything and everything you consume, before eating, every day. For some of you, this will be a fairly easy challenge as you may already do this here and there. My challenge to you is to do so more often. For most of you, however, this challenge will be one that may either seem inconvenient or mundane… but the idea is, that it will also be enlightening. I want YOU to make every effort possible to read what’s on the nutrition label and in the ingredients of everything you consume and/or buy at the store.
Unfortunately, we live in a world that is flooded with misguidance and marketing ploys to get your money when it comes to foods we eat. That box of cereal that touts having “8 Whole Grains” may actually have more sugar than whole grains. A food that has a “Trans-Fat Free!” label slapped to the front of the box may contain partially hydrogenated oils in the ingredient list (trans-fat, by the way), and is just a nutrition fact loophole that a manufacturer may be taking advantage of (less than 1g of trans-fat per serving doesn’t have to be listed on the nutrition facts label). The point here, is that an informed decision is always going to be a healthier decision.
So, here’s some pointers to get you started (please note, this is not an all-inclusive list):
Things to Look Out For:
- High Fructose Corn Syrup
- Partially Hydrogenated Oils (trans-fat)
- Saturated Fat
- High Sugar Content
- High Sodium Content
- Hidden Sugars such as Fructose, Sucrose, & Dextrose
- Artificial Sugars such as Sucralose, Saccharin, Aspartame, & Acesulfame
- Butter and/or Margarine
- Heavy Cream
General Guidance For Healthy Choices:
- Choose Whole Foods When Possible
- Choose Organic Foods When Possible
- Make Sure The Word “Whole” Comes Before Any Grain Listing Ingredient, and Make Sure It’s Listed First
- Keep Total Fat Intake to 20-30% of Calories
- Limit Saturated Fats to Less Than 10% of Calories (less than 200 calories from saturated fat for a 2,000 calorie diet)
- Eliminate Trans-Fats Entirely
- Consume Complex Carbohydrates (brown rice, sweet potatoes, oat meal) Over Simple Carbohydrates (white rice, baked goods, grits)
- Limit Sugar Intake as Much as Possible, Especially After 6pm
- Limit Carbohydrate Intake as Much as Possible After 6pm
- Do Not Eat For 3 Hours Before Bedtime
- Limit Red Meat Consumption to Once Weekly
- Choose Fat Free or 1% Milk over Whole Milk
- Substitute Plain, Non-Fat Yogurt for Sour Cream
- Substitute Apple Sauce for Sugar if Baking
- Substitute Stevia (all-natural sugar substitute) for Sugar
- Substitute Olive Oil for Butter or Margarine
- Eliminate Egg Yolks When Using or Consuming Eggs
- Avoid Fried Foods
- Always Choose Boiled, Broiled, Baked, Steamed or Grilled
Remember – stay informed of what you’re consuming so that you make wiser and healthier decisions. This challenge alone could potentially help you shred pounds of weight off quicker than you’d imagine, and you’ll benefit from a longer life as well. Don’t give in to temptation, and stay the course… our Facebook page is a welcoming bunch of people who are looking to both support and be supported, so make sure to post any questions, concerns, or help for others. Connect with us on Facebook by clicking here.
I’m excited that you will know what you consume more than you ever did before! See you soon. 🙂