With the New Year comes new resolutions and many of us decide to embark on a new healthy eating campaign, either to lose a few pounds or to totally transform our shapes.  

We all try hard in January to bring some balance back into our life – after weeks of over indulgence, we promise ourselves never to eat or drink to excess again. But how long do these resolutions normally last? If you are anything like I am, by the second week in January, I am gazing at the biscuit tin in longing.

In search of some inspiration and advice, I asked Registered Nutritional Therapist, Sophie Leicester if she had any tips that would help us all. Here are her top five tips, gathered from her experience of working with her most successful weight-loss clients:

  1. Try not to think of it as yet another diet – instead, focus on it being the start of a healthy eating lifestyle. One where you eat delicious, healthy foods which will help you feel healthy and energetic – while the excess pounds gradually fall away.
  2. Eat real foods – make your main resolution that most of your food will be simple, natural foods, as minimally processed as possible. Clear out your fridge and cupboards of biscuits, sweets and diet foods, and fill them instead with healthy vegetables, nuts, seeds, fish and chicken. Save any treats for special occasions when you are out and about.
  3. Keep a food diary – or at least at first. Simply writing everything down in a notebook, or using one of the many online sites or apps that are available, will make you more mindful of what you are eating. It will also help you spot patterns – do you eat when you are bored? Or is it loneliness that means you crave those carbs? Train yourself to pick up the phone, or put on a pair of trainers and go for a walk instead.
  4. Make half your plate vegetables – they are healthily nutrient-dense, but wonderfully low in calories. Frozen, ready-prepared vegetables retain their nutrients and are incredibly quick and easy – keep several bags in the top drawer of your freezer ready to throw into stir fries and casseroles.
  5. Don’t forget the protein – Protein is digested more slowly and helps reduce hunger and cravings. Have a little protein every time you eat – and remember the vegetarian proteins such as nuts, seeds and beans as well. We don’t need a lot of protein (45g per day for a woman, 55g for a man) but spreading it throughout the day helps manage our hunger levels and also gives us energy.

Remember that making sure we get enough nutrients is vital for our health. While you are on any sort of weight reducing diet, you might want to take a good quality multivitamin and mineral to make sure that you get the nutrients you need.  It might also be worth trying Green Tea which is said to speed up the metabolism slightly, but is also full of health boosting nutrients.

I am delighted to announce that Sophie will be working with us at Good Measure on the first Monday in every month, as part of the National Face to Face Well-being scheme which is matching Registered Nutritional Therapists with Pharmacists in the community.

She will be on hand to give advice on nutrition and dietary needs for help with weight loss and digestive disorders for a healthier, happier you.

You can find out more about Sophie from her website www.nutritioninsheffield.co.uk.

If you have any specific weight loss or health concerns, please feel free to contact me at Good Measure or email me at andy@thewatsons.co.uk.

In future editions of Around Town, I hope to address your concerns.