One of the first things you will notice is that I talk about THM or Trim Healthy Mama a lot on this blog. Since I adopted the simple concepts found in this book, I finally kicked my sugar addiction and the nightly habit of eating way too much unhealthy chocolate. In its place, is Skinny Chocolate or a bowl of Berry Whip. You will have to buy the book to find those recipes 🙂
I slowly eased our family into this new way of eating so we would not be overwhelmed and could relax as we took our time to embrace it. Changing food habits of a lifetime takes awhile and we do well to go slow, so as to form new habits.
Some of the ways you can successfully take on a healthier lifestyle, no matter how little you currently know or where you are on your journey to a healthier lifestyle are listed below. You might surprise yourself with what knowledge you already have. Remember, you are an individual and what suits you and your family will look different to what suits me and mine. With that said, let’s go!
Increase your knowledge of food and nutrition. Read widely and research the different ways foods can affect you. We all know food can have good and bad health outcomes. You will then be armed with information to make informed decisions. Take the time to read books and online health journals, subscribe to websites that blog about scientific studies relating to nutrition. When we increase our own knowledge of food and nutrition, it gives us much more control over our diet because we then know more about what is in our foods and on our plates. Over the last 15 years, my family has moved more and more towards a way of eating that resembles what was on offer 50 years ago.
Learn carbohydrate and calorie awareness, along with strategies to kick your daily sugar habit. Do you know how much sugar you eat each day? I was totally shocked when I become aware of the amount of sugar and calories I was eating. With a few simple adjustments, you can gain control of the calories and sugar you consume. Be careful not to become too rigid, as eating should not become a burden. We want to be sure we are not consuming more than we need to but we should still retain the enjoyment of eating. Eating too much was a habit I fell into while perpetually hungry during pregnancies.
Cook nutritious, wholesome meals at home. In buying take away or prepared meals from the supermarket, I was spending far too much money and my family were consuming far too many foods containing added sugar and lots of other nasties. By learning to cook more at home you can avoid added sugar and many of the nasty ingredients which are simply not needed. I enjoy grabbing popular recipes and giving them healthy makeovers. Some of my family’s favorites taste better than the original version, even when I have adjusted the ingredients to be more wholesome. You can see Aussie Mamas recipes here.
Menu planning. I have always loved filling in little menu planners. During certain times and seasons of my life, however, I frequently used the “on the hop” menu planning method. This does not work so well when it comes to getting meals on the table each night for eleven people. Nine children all claiming to be starving hungry now does not make for a calm and happy home! Of course, this “on the hop” menu planning method almost always resulted in quick ‘dinners’ from a jar or takeaway which added nothing to my desire to eat well and to lose weight. When I take the time to organise and implement a menu plan, it becomes much easier to control what is placed on our plates because I know what we were eating ahead of time and have all the ingredients on hand. Do you want to reduce your weekly food budget by a hundred dollars or more? Menu planning will help you do this and may assist you in losing weight. Since I started menu planning, we are eating healthier and spending less. Do you struggle to set aside the time to do this? I often do.
Be sure to see this post all about Aussie Mamas meal plans and shopping lists!
Employ small kitchen appliances to make preparing healthy foods easier. If you are anything like me you probably have at least one small kitchen appliance sitting somewhere in your kitchen- think slow cooker, rice cooker, flat plate sandwich press, food processor, or if you are really lucky, a Thermomix! It was not until I started to regularly utilise these tools that I was able to consistently provide healthy meals for my family, with less effort. In our family of eleven, I cannot imagine going a day without using one these time savers.
Hope this was of some help. I would love to hear your stories of why you started Trim Healthy Mama so please drop me a note in the comments below.