At this time of year, you are likely starting to think about how you will change things for next year. The goals you will set, both personal and business, and how you will achieve them.
There is a lot of noise around about making big changes and overcoming hurdles.
In my experience it is always more effective to make one change and then another because you build on each improvement. Making a series of small improvements can give you a much better result than making one giant improvement that you don’t keep up because it was too different!
Life really resembles the tortoise and the hare story much more that you recognize. (pic of hare sleeping while tortoise walks past).
Small Steps For Big Gains
Humans are creatures of habit and most of us don’t like big change so a more sustainable approach is to make a series of smaller changes.
Making a 1% improvement each day would mean that by the end of a year you have improved a whopping 3778%!
This means that after about 70 days you would be 100% better than where you started and the improvements only increase from there.
The other great bit about this, is that if you make a mistake or don’t improve for a day or two, you are not back to where you started. You can simply pick yourself up and continue on.
One of the most common, dare I say it, New Year’s Resolutions, is to lose weight. Another is to improve your health.
What always confuses me about these is that they are interconnected, and most people seem to think they are independent of each other.
The truth is, you are unlikely to lose weight if you don’t consider the excess weight to be part of your health picture. Nor are you likely to improve your health if you don’t address your weight.
For example, suddenly joining a gym and working out regularly, will not necessarily offset all the hamburgers you are still eating. It would take around 1-2 hours on a bike or treadmill to cancel out the calories in one hamburger! And that doesn’t include anything else you eat…
Conversely, deciding that you are going to eat celery for three weeks will certainly help you to lose weight, but it is not a healthy way to go about it, and where do you go after that?
I believe that one of the best ways to improve your health and to, potentially, lose weight if you have it to lose, is to change the food you eat.
It doesn’t seem to matter how well you think you eat already, there are a myriad of small changes you can make to your food that can have huge, long-standing effects on your health.
There are 9 main steps to improving your food and so improving your health.
1. Reducing Sugar
Your liver can only process a certain amount of sugar a day once you exceed that amount your liver turns the excess to fat and that fat gets stored in case you need it later.
2. Eating the Right Fats
You need fat or, at least, your cells need fat. That’s why you hear people talk about ‘essential fatty acids’. They are ‘essential’ because your body can’t make them. The thing is there are fats your cells can use and fats that they can’t.
3. Drinking More Good Quality Water
Humans are around 70% water on average with some things, like organs, being more, and some things, like muscles, being less. Most people don’t drink enough water let alone good quality water.
4. Meat and Protein
Protein is one of the building blocks of nutrition and many people believe that they can only get their protein from meat. In fact, there are many other sources of protein including dairy products, eggs and many vegetables and nuts.
5. Fruit and Vegetables
You probably know you should be eating your greens because they are good for you. Fruit, vegetables and nuts contain so many varied nutrients that you are doing yourself a disservice if you don’t have large portions on a daily basis.
6. Bread and Grains
You may be surprised to know that some bread contains more sugar than your liver can process in a day! There are more grains than just wheat and by varying the grains you eat you can improve a lot of health outcomes and discover a lot of new great flavours!
Coffee and tea and soft drinks make up a huge percentage of what people drink in a day and you may be surprised to know there can be a lot of sugar hidden in these. Another interesting fact is that carbonated drinks activate ghrelin, your ‘hunger hormone’, so can make you feel hungry.
When you drink alcohol, your liver pretty much stops processing everything else while it deals with the alcohol so finding some ways to manage how you drink can be helpful.
Most processed foods contain additives. Some are to make the food look better, or taste better or to make it last longer. Most additives mean more work for your body some are difficult for your body to process and can accumulate in your body. As far as I know, there has not been any testing to see if there is an interaction between different additives
If you work through these 9 steps over a number of weeks you will find that they can make a difference to how you feel and you may even lose some weight.
“Remember! Any changes are a great start and if you make them small and know why you are doing them you will find that it is easier to keep them going.
And once you have one improvement sorted out, you can add another.
You will be 100% better before you know it!”
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