The best nutrition advice for any fitness goal is to eat for your goals. The second best advice is to keep foods out of your house that you simply “can’t stop eating.”
Indulging is fun. You should do so as a treat, but keeping foods in your home you can’t control yourself with is only going to lead to one outcome. You’ll eat them until they are gone. There is no food you should eat obsessively.
Do yourself a favor. Write down a list of food you currently have in your home that you eat on autopilot. Then, do yourself another favor. On grocery day, don’t shop hungry. Most importantly tell your family about the food you are trying to keep out and why then find new healthier options to eat.
Write down the culprits.
No doubt, there is something in your cupboard right now that if you get it, it will be gone shortly. It may only still be there because of shame or the last strands of your will power.
The limits of your willpower rest on a tight slackline. One small variable to make all your best intentions take a dive. Rather than teeter through your days, get em on paper. Post your list on the fridge. We’ll come back to why.
The reason you write things down is to identify concretes. You know what foods are on your list, but writing them down takes them from your abstract thinking voice, putting them into your very specific written voice.
Writing makes thoughts real. It also will reveal more as you clear out cobwebs. You may be surprised how big this actually is.
Don’t shop hungry.
This is no new advice, but let’s cover what doesn’t count. Pre-buying a bag of chips or whatever on the way through the supermarket is not a good plan. This is, in fact, simply breaking the rules but outside the house.
The idea is you leave the house properly fed.
The better you feel about your pre-shopping meal, the less likely you will be to shop around the rules. You’ll carry that good feeling of being a healthy-minded adult as you shop.
You’ll also not be shopping hungry.
Tell your family.
No man or woman is an island. Your family might not understand, but without their help, you’re going to struggle.
They may take your request as judgment, so be prepared. Let them know that they can eat those foods, but that you need to keep them out of the house to better manage your nutrition.
If you’re in a weight loss goal, then it’s even more critical that they have your back. In that case, this won’t be the only aspect of your nutrition for which you’ll need help.
If all you do is cut food out of your life, then you’ll fold under your cravings.
It’s nearly impossible to do this successfully if all you think about is what you cannot have, but much easier if you can focus on the new things you get to try.
As an example, most supermarkets now appreciate a wide variety of produce from all over the world. When was the last time you cut open Filipino papaya or any of the other tropical fruits sold there?
Your produce section is a treasure trove of discoveries waiting for you to discover.
Does it always have to to be like this?
That’s up to you, but I find that when I gorge myself I’m left with negative feelings. The joy of stuffing myself is quickly lost in guilt.
On the other hand, the idea that my shopping list is always open for some newly discovered food makes me a little excited. Excited outshines guilt every day.