Sunday, 12 October 2014

October Soul, Mind & Body | The importance of a balanced diet

Good Sunday my leaves,

How are we all today?

As you may have guessed from Wednesday's post this week's focus is all about food and balance. I mentioned a few weeks ago in a weekly update that I was trying to drop a few pounds to get back to a figure I am more comfortable with.

Wanting to lose weight and actually making the changes has definitely been a challenge! The first thing I had to do was review my current diet. As I also have a tendency to change moods significantly based on my diet I also recorded my mood at the beginning and end of the day to see if this had any effect.

The results were shocking! Throughout a typical day I would be well within my calorie guidance for a woman (2000kcal) but the food I had eaten would contain very little nutrition. It was largely a diet of white bread cheese sandwiches, crisps, sweets snacked on at work, pizza, takeaways and other goodies that shouldn't be part of a daily routine, chocolate I'm looking at you.

The difference in my mood was also quite alarming. On high sugar days my mood was a roller coaster, I knew that sugar affected me but I hadn't clocked just how much of an impact it was having. Some days I would arrive home mid-crash and I would be the grumpiest person you didn't want to cross. On other days I would be having, what can only be described as, a mad half hour that would last well over an hour.

With this in mind, and my food diary making me feel very sorry for myself, I decided to start out with little changes. Luckily for me my work decided to replace the sweet bowl with a fruit bowl at the same time! My lunches now would be wholemeal or granary bread to try and reduce sugar. I varied between sandwich fillings too, to reduce the fats from cheese. Despite being incredibly fussy I quite like fish, so I would have tuna salads for some lunches and salmon for tea. I decided that I wouldn't go 'cold turkey' on takeaway but instead limit myself to one indulgent day a week. I'm aiming for a lifestyle change instead of a diet.

I have a sweet tub at home but I ensure that I don't have more than one item from it a day. Crisps are still a struggle but I've switched to quavers for  now and occasionally try something different such as lentil, quinoa or pita crisps.

I'm starting to notice a difference in my mood too but the weight isn't shifting quite as quickly as I'd hoped. It's taking a lot of my strength to not do anything drastic. Weight can take time to lose but this is a much healthier way of doing it and I have to remember that it's not a race to lose weight.

I'm eating a banana a working day too and this is really boosting my potassium levels, bye bye leg cramps in the middle of the night for no apparent reason! I still try to avoid citrus fruits as they give me horrid mood swings for some unknown reason but I'm increasing my veg intake too :)

This has turned into an almighty ramble about and quite frankly it's made me hungry! I'm sat here with a snack pot of grapes instead of sweets though so at least I'm eating goodness! I shall let you know how this weight change goes and if you have any tips or tricks please share! I'm not looking for comments that are negative and these will be deleted, there's enough bad in the world without our own negativity.

Do you have any healthy recipes to share? Have you ever kept a food diary before? How did you find it?

Make your own choices.

Toodlepip x