CheekyLittleCareers’ founder Sanu Miah explains why he’s giving his body a spring clean and re-evaluating eating habits.
I recently decided to treat myself to some new clothes, as I haven’t bought any in a long time, only to discover that to my shock and horror I’ve jumped a shirt size to large.
Therefore, I’m giving my body a spring clean and re-evaluating my eating habits with the aim of moving back down a size to medium. But rather than a crash diet, my goal is to achieve this in a more sustainable way, meaning I’ve got a stronger chance of sticking with it for the long haul.
Whatever your reason or motivation for shedding excess pounds, below are some simple and practical tips that have thus far worked for me, which I hope you can draw on for some ideas/inspiration. And needless to say before making any drastic changes to your diet get medical advice where appropriate.
- Start with: Operation clean up – get rid of any sugary and/or fatty snacks. I emptied out my kitchen cupboards last Saturday. My worktop looked like an episode of the BBC’s ‘How to eat well for less’ minus Greg Wallace shouting in my ear. I separated out the junk food, outdated spices, sauces, and packaged produce. I did the same with my fridge and freezer. I only put back the food items I wanted to keep and threw the rest away.
- Next: Organise your shopping list (or create one if you aren’t doing this already) – Now that you’ve cleared out your kitchen cupboards it’s time to plan the refill. I know this sounds extremely pedantic but spend some time formulating your list/order. Think about the week ahead – by that I mean breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Decide what you want for each meal and buy accordingly, allowing for any meals you’ll be eating away from home. Avoid leaving your online food order to the last minute because you’re more likely to end up adding all sorts of convenience foods and unhealthy snacks to it just to get it over with as quickly as possible. Let’s be honest, food shopping can be a pain in the nether regions. I for one am guilty of this and so I practice what I preach and started my “clean” up last Saturday. I took out crisps, sweets/sugary snacks and ready meals from my order. In doing so I saved myself a whopping £18 (or approximately 12,000 unnecessary calories) – double bonus!
- Now: Stick to 3 meals a day – I won’t lie, when it comes to snacking I’m notoriously bad at diving into the unhealthy stuff. The root cause of this for me is skipping meals, mainly lunch, which inevitably leaves me reaching into my snack cupboard at around 4pm. My advice therefore is to try avoiding missing meals because it should help you to cut down on snacking. Besides, if you’ve made a success of streamlining your supermarket order you shouldn’t have any unhealthy snacks within reach. Just wait until it’s time for lunch or dinner – you don’t need something in between. If you’re really hungry and can’t wait have a piece of fruit or some nuts which should do the trick.
- Then: Cut out “And’s” – let me explain this one by using a simple example. Next time you order or make a sandwich just eat the sandwich. You don’t need a sandwich and a packet of crisps and a fizzy drink. The only thing these “And’s” add are calories that you can probably do without. Here’s another example, how many of you have ordered a Big-Mac meal and an additional cheeseburger as a little starter? – if you’re guilty of this, ask yourself this simple question – was it necessary?
Next time you plan/prepare a meal or order food try this trick.
None of this stuff is rocket science, it’s the small incremental steps, coupled with regular exercise (I’ve recently taken up jogging), that can add up to bigger changes longer-term.