When I first started to want to become healthy, one of the first things I realised is that my kitchen is working against me. It had teamed up with my pantry and went for the one-two punch for unhealthy eating. What’s even worse is they called in the refrigerator to help. And it worked for many years. One of the most commonly overlooked factors when it comes to trying to lose weight or just be healthier is the impact of your environment, meaning in this case, where you live and eat. And I can guarantee that your kitchen is in on it. So long story short if you want to clean up your diet, you must clean up your kitchen. Makes sense right? Let’s see a few tips to make this easier.
1. Load up on healthy stuff
This is often easier than the next step. Make sure your kitchen is stocked with healthy, whole foods. Fresh fruit and vegetables, lean protein, and good carbs are a great start. After all, if there is good food to eat, you can at least choose wisely when snacking or eating, even if you haven't totally purged out your kitchen.
2 Slowly get rid of unhealthy stuff
This is a tough one. Slowly cut back on processed food like cakes, cookies, chips, etc. If these are in your pantry, you WILL eat them. At the beginning of your healthy eating journey, I highly recommend just reducing the amount, don't go cold turkey. I had (and still have) an Oreo addiction, so I simply cut out one packet a week at the beginning. Eventually I got to zero.
3. Buy some spices and herbs
Nothing jazzes up your meal like a good dose of spice. What's more, is that many herbs and spices have additional health benefits, such as turmeric, garlic and many others. One of the biggest complaints I've heard is that healthy food is quite bland. But it doesn't have to be. Load up on spices from different cuisines and add some flavour. Buy a few cookbooks (healthy of course) to get some inspiration. Or go online. There is ton's of info.
4. Plan your meals
Planning is key to change. Set aside some time to think about the food you want to prepare for the coming week. Identify things you can prepare in advance and a few solid go to healthy meals. Think tons of vegetables, some fruit, protein and some good carbs. If you are super busy then plan on some grab and go items, like individual greek yogurt, prepared salad greens, baby vegetables, etc.
5. Shop from a list
After you have a rough plan for the week, and checked out what you have on hand, make a shopping list. And I mean write it down and bring it with you. All the planning in the world won't save you if your forget everything at the supermarket and end up rushing right to the cookie aisle. A good habit is to not buy too much, only what you can prepare and consume otherwise you may end up wasting food. If need be, try 2 small shopping trips to stock up on fresh ingredients.
I think fixing your environment is key to lasting nutritional change. Hit comment or like if you agree. As part of my nutritional coaching programs, I offer a kitchen clean-out feature where I can help you get on track.