It was easy to fall into unhealthy habits last year when we were still working from home and finding it more tempting to put off exercise and eat more comfort foods. But the New Year is a clean slate for building a healthier lifestyle and sometimes the smallest changes can have the biggest results.
The home can be a great place to start. If you're spending most of your days at home for whatever reason then why not make things like exercise and diet more convenient. You can always create your own workout space by adding one of the best exercise bikes to your garage or office space, as exercise machines like this are great for burning fat fast.
Despite what people say eating for weight loss doesn't necessarily mean you must make drastic changes to your diet. Restricting yourself can do more damage than good, reating a "yo-yo diet" effect. You can try adding more nutrient-rich foods to your favorite meals, rather than going completely without.
Love pairing your protein of choice with a generous dollop of mashed potato? You can still enjoy a smooth and creamy mash with dinner but just swap out the potato for some more colorful vegetables.
It sounds simple but mashing up nutrient-rich root vegetables like carrot or swede is probably overlooked by many people who swear by mash as a side dish. Nutritional Therapist at the Institute for Optimum Nutrition (opens in new tab), Kate Delmar-Morgan, said that potatoes when mashed might be responsible for causing a post-meal slump, stalling our productivity as a result.
Potatoes have a high glycaemic index (GI), especially when prepared and served as mash. What this means is they release sugar fast and this can lead to a rapid rise in blood sugars, which often ends in a subsequent 'crash'. When this happens you can find yourself feeling drowsy, lethargic, and unproductive – all things we don't need getting in the way of our 2022 goals.
However, Delmar-Morgan suggests choosing a root vegetable with a lower GI volume. Celeriac, sweet potato, carrot, or swede can all offer a richer source of nutrition as well as help stabilize your blood sugar levels.
Nutritionists and dieticians frequently encourage people to 'eat the rainbow' and this is because eating a wide variety of vegetables will provide you with a large number of nutrients and increase your energy.
Delmar-Morgan explained that sweet potatoes and carrots are also a great source of beta-carotene, this is an antioxidant that the body converts into vitamin A to promote a healthier immune system, improve skin and vision. These are all wins for our overall health.
So if you do tend to fall into a bit of a slump after you eat and put off plans like going to a gym class or getting outside for a walk it might be to do with the meals you are cooking.
Another way you can increase the nutritious value of the foods you eat is by cooking with one of our best air fryer entries. This avoids frying or baking your favorite foods such as bacon, chicken, or fries in unhealthy fats and oils.
Jessica is Staff Writer at Fit&Well. Her career in journalism began in local news and she holds a Masters in journalism. Jessica has previously written for Runners World, penning news and features on fitness, sportswear and nutrition.
When she isn't writing up news and features for Fit&Well covering topics ranging from muscle building, to yoga, to female health and so on, she will be outdoors somewhere, testing out the latest fitness equipment and accessories to help others find top products for their own fitness journeys. Her testing pairs up nicely with her love for running. She recently branched out to running 10Ks and is trying to improve her time before moving on to larger races. Jessica also enjoys building on her strength in the gym and is a believer in health and wellness beginning in the kitchen. She shares all of this on her running Instagram account @jessrunshere which she uses for accountability and for connecting with like-minded fitness lovers.
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