New Year, New You

The New Year is upon us, but instead of setting drastic resolutions for yourself, how about making small changes to your diet that will help balance your hormones and improve your overall health? First of all, don’t set a number for the amount of weight you want to lose. Instead make a resolution to eat healthier and measure your success by the way you feel. Do you have more energy? Are your hot flashes getting better? Are you more focused at work? Are you sleeping better at night? Has your libido increased?

Here are some general guidelines to help get you on track this new year so you can feel like a whole new you:

  • Drink water! – Water is very important for our bodies to detoxify all the toxins that are stored in our fat. Drinking a glass of water prior to a meal can also help you eat less.
  • Plan your meals in advance, even snacks – If you know what you’re going to eat when you’re hungry the less likely you’ll stand in front of the fridge or pantry trying to find something. This is when “less than optimal” foods may enter your mouths.
  • Record what you eat – This helps you lose weight by showing food patterns, monitoring areas of improvement and tracking progress.
  • Eat breakfast – Breakfast is important because your body needs to restore the fuel it lost during the night. If you don’t eat breakfast your body won’t have fuel to work with and your body sees that as a stressor and your cortisol levels will rise.
  • Eat every 3 hours – Small, more frequent meals provide a consistent input of fuel, which won’t trigger an increase in cortisol demand and reduce your metabolism due to lower thyroid hormone.
  • Don’t drink your calories – Sodas (even diet), fruit juices, sports drinks, sweet tea, and specialty coffee drinks should be replaced with water, seltzer water, green tea, herbal tea and decaf coffee. The sweeteners and caffeine contribute to insulin resistance and cortisol imbalance. If you can’t function without your morning coffee, start with one cup of caffeinated and then switch to decaf.
  • Eat healthy foods 80-90 percent of the time – If you’re eating whole, nutritious foods 80-90 percent of the time, you can indulge in a little something special during the other time. If you’re too rigid, you’ll get frustrated and give up, which is why many diets fail.