Simple steps to reset your diet after the holidays

The new year...a time to look forward to a year of exciting plans and new adventures. And, a time of New Year's resolutions.

The holidays are such a wonderful time – but they can also be detrimental to our “diet”. Turkey and stuffing, pumpkin pie, glasses of eggnog, all very tempting and delicious treats - most of us have a hard time not indulging. But rather than look back at our choices with regret, I prefer to look forward and to start fresh. A new way of eating for the new year – or rather a RE-newed way of eating. Something referred to as a “re-set diet”. And with this renewed way of eating, we can “re-set” ourselves and resolve to make healthier choices moving forward.

The Basics of a ReSet Diet

The first step of a reset diet is to look at our kitchen and pantry, and remove anything that might disrupt your “re-set” – left over cookies, any “refined” baking supplies (refined sugar, refined flour), soda, instant foods – anything that was bought for the holidays that wasn’t used. Or anything that well-meaning friends gave you as a treat or gift that you may not truly want (for example, chocolate, wine, liquors). This can be a tough step, but an important one: For me, I know myself too well, and after a long day, I’m going to be able to “justify” resorting to eating these foods. And I’m not going to be happy afterwards.

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Next, stock up on healthy “instant” foods – ideas include fresh fruit and vegetables, nuts and seeds, herbal teas, and my favourite: ingredients for smoothie bowls. This way, when you do return home from a long day at work, you can still save yourself from having to prepare a long meal. It is a good idea to also have ingredients for making salads, so that you can add some variety to your “instant” foods. Be sure to include good sources of protein (examples include quinoa, tempeh, raw nuts, hummus, hemp seeds). Try to eat organic as much as possible, to reduce the toxic load of pesticides and other chemicals.

A third step would be the creation of a meal plan. Be sure to include healthy versions of your comfort foods so that you are not bored following the plan. And as you are finding your recipes, build a grocery list for yourself to make it easier to shop. And be realistic – if you won’t have time on Tuesdays because you are driving your kids to hockey, don’t expect yourself to cook for an hour that night. Meal plans can take time to create, so your meal plan can be rotated, in other words, used on a repeated basis, switching out a few recipes. Remember to take your plan with you to the grocery store, and keep a copy readily available in the kitchen when you are preparing food. Saving a copy to your smart phone can help with this.

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And while you are focusing on eating clean food, help your body to get clean by drinking lots of pure fresh water – try for at least 8 glasses each day. Try to get ample sleep too – 7 to 9 hours whenever possible.

As you focus on your renewed way of eating, find rewards for yourself. Making changes like these takes effort – and you should feel proud that you are making that effort. Be sure to find some (non-junk food!) ways of rewarding yourself – a long walk, trying a new herbal tea, or treating yourself to the latest novel by your favourite author – and allowing yourself the time to read it!

In just a short time, you will feel better as a result of this renewed way of eating. And that will be the greatest reward!

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Interested in learning more about eating clean? I will be at the next Loch March open house on January 12th. Join me and learn about the benefits of nutritional consulting. I will also be sharing some of my most popular recipes. Visit the Loch March website for details.