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Posted on April 22, 2015

7 reasons your ‘diet’ isn’t working

Diets/ fitness/ Health/ health benefits

moderation

There’s nothing more annoying than spending so much time in the gym, doing calorie counts at a restaurant, avoiding all your favourite snacks and still seeing no results. Despite all your efforts and ability to maintain will-power for so long, the number on the scale doesn’t seem to want to budge– mind-boggling, right?

Luckily, you don’t have to throw in the towel right away and you might even find it comforting to know that you probably aren’t the only ‘dieter’ who isn’t seeing the desired results.

In most cases, it could just be because you’ve picked up on a few small – and extremely common – habits that are preventing you from seeing the scale drop. All it takes is making a few smart lifestyle changes that will have you shedding weight sooner than you think.

dieting

Here are some of the reasons your ‘diet’ isn’t working:

#1: Calling it a ‘diet’ to begin with

I personally don’t like the word ‘diet’. To me, it implies starvation, limitation and robbing your body of what it needs to survive – ok, that’s a bit of a stretch, but you know what I’m getting at. I think it’s better to regard your weight loss goals as creating a lasting healthy lifestyle – this also promises a lot more consistency!

#2: Not knowing your eating personality

I recently wrote a piece about knowing your eating personality. Knowing whether you’re a socialiser, a binger or an emotional eater can bring you one step closer to seeing the the results you want because you will know how to go about on making your lifestyle changes.

#3: Going cold turkey

I’ve already touched on the idea that I associate the word diet with restriction and limitation. But it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that labelling certain foods as big no-no’s will only make you want them more. Remember, moderation is key!  If you focus on having more of what your body needs i.e fruits, vegetables and water, then you can treat yourself every now and again.

one meal doesn'tmake you skinny

#4: Trying to eat as little as you can

Don’t get me started on this one. Nothing hurts me more than hearing someone say ‘I’m starving, but I can’t eat past 8pm’ it drives me absolutely insane! Some people seem to forget that food is their body’s fuel. You need it to keep energised during the day. Eating within a healthy range of foods is not bad for you – even if it is after 8.30pm!

#5: Misreading the scale

When I first started at the gym I was 50kg, then after a couple of months, I went up to 52kg. Some people would freak out about this, but I knew that it was just all the muscle that I was gaining for working out! If the scale isn’t budging, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you aren’t losing inches. You could simply getting fitter and gaining lean muscle mass.

lean

#6:  Dieting but not exercising

If you want to see results, then you need to bare in mind that watching your diet and exercising go hand-in-hand. If you’re too embarrassed to go for a jog and don’t want to join any gym classes then there are a lot of YouTube videos that can help you achieve your weight-loss goals in the comfort of your own home- you have no excuse!

#7: Giving up too soon

Anyone can have a setback, but it takes someone with real determination to get back up and try all over again. I’m not going to lie, I have my moments when I give up completely and need a few weeks to get back on track. But when I do, I get enthusiastic about it all over again!  It all comes down to being realistic about what you can achieve in the time that you have. Remember, if you can dream it, you can do it!

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Posted on December 18, 2014

6 Dairy-free milk substitutes

Diets/ fitness/ Health

dairy free milk

There are a number of reasons why you might like to eliminate cows milk from your diet. Whether it’s due to a dairy allergy or simply because you want to make more health conscious decisions about what you consume (it’s nearly that time of year again!), you can find a couple of nutritional substitutes for regular milk that aren’t heavy on the saturated fat or loaded with calories.

Soy milk

Soy milk is probably the most widely available substitute for cow’s milk. It is full of protein & fiber, and is safe for people who are lactose intolerant. However, it has been said that soy milk is a bowel irritant and if you don’t go organic, it can be quite high in sugar too! So if you’re keeping an eye on your sugar intake, do keep this mind when consuming soy milk.

Rice milk

This is by far my favourite substitute for normal milk.  Not only is it the most hypoallergenic, but it’s also the least fattening! Rice milk has a lot of hearty goodness which can help lower blood pressure. The downside to using rice milk is that it hasn’t got as much protein as the other substitutes and it can cause a spike in sugar levels too. That aside, it tastes amazing!

Coconut milk

Coconut milk is another tasty alternative and it just seems like the benefits of drinking coconut milk are endless: it is soya-free, gluten-free, cholesterol-free, nut-free and its fat content is regarded as being ‘good fat’, since it’s easily metabolised by the body and converted into energy instead of being stored as fat – oh, and did I mention it was a vegan drink?

hemp milk

Hemp milk

I bet this photo caught your eye! 🙂 Hemp milk is full of healthy omega fatty acids as well as protein. If you have a soy or nut allergy, then this is the milk for you! Since it’s much thicker and a bit nuttier than the other milk alternatives, it isn’t to everyone’s taste so if you like the taste of cows milk, but just want to stay off if for diet reasons then remember that hemp milk doesn’t taste like cows milk by any stretch of the imagination – don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Oat milk

Since it’s derived from a plant, oat milk is free from both cholesterol and lactose. It has an abundance of the antioxidant vitamin E, but is not so high when it comes to protein. Because of its oaty flavour, oat milk works really well with hot cereals or breakfast foods. A huge drawback to using oat milk is that you have to be able to take in gluten, so if you’re coeliac then this is a big no-no!

Nut milk

From cashew milk to hazelnut milk to almond milk – there are just so many to choose from! Nut milks are generally loaded with protein and vitamin E, and are usually quite thick. Almond milk is probably the most popular nut milk and because it’s so thick and creamy, it is a natural match for making sweet desserts. The main argument against nut milk is that nuts are a common allergen for people. But if this isn’t an issue for you, then enjoy!

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Posted on October 30, 2014

The truth behind unsuccessful dieting

Diets/ Nutrition

dieting fails

Summer is officially over, the New Year is approaching and you’ve already decided that one of your resolutions will be to go on a diet and stick to it – like always.

However, there’s a chance you could be wasting your time and money trying to follow diet plans that will probably never work. I’m not trying to discourage you here or anything but as it turns out, the reasons behind a lot of failed diets go beyond lacking persistence and not having enough willpower.

Instead, much of our dieting downfalls come down to our personality types and more often than not, we set out goals that we are genetically incapable of sticking to.

According to new research, the relationship you have with food actually depends on your ‘eating personality.’ Whether we’re ‘rushers’, ‘pickers’ or ‘socialisers’, our eating personality has a huge impact on whether or not we can stick to diet plans.

scale

‘Rushers’ are women who don’t make great diet choices because they don’t have enough time – they usually resort to ready-made meals.

‘Pickers’ snack in between meals, and ‘bingers’ are the ones who starve themselves for ages and then down a colossal amount of food in one go – “I had plain greek yoghurt for breakfast and then a carrot for lunch. Then I came home and ate the entire kitchen,” sound like you?

Other personalities include ‘comfort eaters’ (the type I’m all too familiar with), ‘socialisers,’ who put on weight because of their drinking habits and ‘settlers,’ who pile up on the pounds once they’ve gotten into a relationship – the get ‘em and trap ‘em kinda gals!

Although your eating personality affects your dieting, it’s no reason to use it as an excuse to why you aren’t losing weight.  Once you identify your weaknesses and work out what exactly it is that makes you want to eat (besides hunger), dieting becomes a tad bit easier!

I guess there’s always comfort in knowing that a lack of will power isn’t entirely to blame for our bad food choices…….

So tell me, which would-be slimmer do you think you are?

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