Diets are notoriously hard to follow. Cutting out everything that tastes good and demanding that you journal about your health visions? No thank you, please. But if you truly care about getting your health in line, you seriously have to find some balance.
I’m not saying to give up eating cake – just make changes that will benefit your health in the long run. All right, done with the pep talk. Once you make these simple changes, you will find yourself feeling great. They’re pretty dang doable, too.
Cut the INSANE amount of sugar
Spoon HQ just hosted an amazing sugar detox to kick off the school year, read about the experience here. But if you didn’t get in on that, or maybe you did, but the e-mails went straight to the barrel, have no fear.
If you’re trying to reduce that sneaky sweetener, start by turning to fruit instead of chocolate. Put honey or stevia in your tea to banish cravings, and look for alternative dessert recipes that use natural methods of sweetening if you just can’t seem to block cookies from your vision. Here’s a tasty guilt-free sweet potato brownie recipe. Need more help? Learn how to beat sugar cravings here.
Drink detox water like it’s holy
You’re hungover AF, but if your first resort is pancakes and coffee, I promise you, it will not help you resolve the Sunday morning blues. Try chopping some lemon, cucumber and mint and throw it in a giant glass of water for a bit so the flavors soak. Then chug that thing like it’s the fountain of youth. Find some more tasty detox water combos here. You’ll be surprised how much energy you’ll have.
Get some movement in every day
I’m not telling you to get yolked at the gym. Just move your body. If that means taking the stairs instead of the elevator or doing yoga in your dorm, DO IT. Your body is literally craving movement after a two-hour lecture, so give it exactly what it deserves. The best part? Stress will literally melt away with endorphin release, so try this quick HIIT combo.
Stop counting calories, start counting nutrition
Seriously, that ish doesn’t matter. If you’re choosing to eat nutritiously, calories don’t matter. A banana with peanut butter or a salad with lean protein are perfectly nutritious, so there’s no need to freak over calorie consumption. You’re doing what’s best for your body, and it’ll love you right back.
Eat your dang breakfast
Your mom probably told you this one eons ago. And she’s right. You should leave that quick-bite breakfast in 2015. It’s so important to fuel for the day, and it’s not that hard to grab a banana and a protein bar to eat in class. It will get your brain functioning for that 8 am lecture, plus you won’t be shoveling food down later, which could lead to weight gain. Check out all of the benefits of eating breakfast here, and some fast, healthy options to make when you have zero time in the mornings.
Eat WHOLE foods
Something I can’t stress enough. Just like it’s important to count nutrition over calories, stop eating so much processed junk. A hand full of almonds and a banana are a much better option than a bag of chips between classes.
You’re guaranteed a nutritious, satisfying snack, without all of the additives. It’s simple to make a lean burger at home with a salad instead of resorting to fast food with ingredients you can’t look on a package for. Who knows what the heck butylated hydroxyanisole is? Yeah, didn’t think so. If you have no idea what you’re eating, why eat it?